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Government handling of local government fund a farce – Stanley

13 December, 2013 - by Brian Stanley TD

Sinn Féin's Spokesperson on Environment, Community and Local Government, Brian Stanley TD, has branded the Government's handling of council budgets "an unprecedented farce." 
Stanley said:

"Local councils are trying to agree budgets for 2014. These are normally done in early December every year. This process is now being held up by the Department of Environment who have yet to notify councils of their allocation from the local government fund for 2014. This fund is money collected from motor tax. 
“This process is being delayed as Service Level Agreements between Irish Water and local councils for the provision of water have not yet been worked out.  €600 million of the local government fund will go directly to Irish Water next year.  The Minister and his Department have put Councillors in an unprecedented situation as many councils have been forced to defer or cancel budget meetings.
“The Government's handling of this is nothing short of a farce.  Under their stewardship it has been one fiasco after another, whether it's the household charge, local property tax, centralisation of driving licences or this latest fiasco of Irish Water.
“If this matter is not rectified, councillors will not be in a position to consider their budgets this month without having figures to base them on. I raised this matter with Minister Hogan this week and urged him to resolve this issue to allow Local Government to function properly." 

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