North Antrim Sinn Féin MLA Daithí McKay has welcomed the success of the Carrier Bag Levy Challenge Fund that is benefiting community groups across the north. April marks the first anniversary of the introduction of the Carrier Bag Levy in the north.
"My Private Members Bill in the last Assembly set up a mechanism whereby funds raised through the Carrier Bag Levy would go directly into the Department of the Environment for distribution to community groups for community and environmental projects.
"Even though the carrier bag levy has been in place for only a year it has already led to a huge reduction in the number of carrier bags used and the monies raised and given out through this community fund amount to some £2.2million.
"While we want to see less money being raised for this as we want to see carrier bag use reduce, it is great to see so many community groups benefit from my Single Use Carrier Bags Act 2011.
"Funding has been handed out to many projects in North Antrim including groups in Cloughmills, Portglenone, Rathlin Island, Ballycastle and Glenravel.
“I would also encourage other groups in the area to apply for this funding. Some groups have received £30,000 for projects in their area so it is certainly something that community organisations should consider further." ENDS