Munster calls for reinstatement of Specific Improvement Grants for road safety
Sinn Féin TD for Louth and East Meath Imelda Munster has called for the government to reinstate Specific Improvement Grants to allow local authorities to carry out necessary road projects to improve road safety.
The Specific Improvement grants allowed councils to access funding for projects such as roundabout and junction upgrades, however the government did away with the scheme during the austerity period and has yet to reinstate it.
Deputy Munster said:
“There are serious road safety issues in many towns and villages across the state which require urgent improvement. At present, local authorities are stuck in limbo as they cannot access funding to carry out the necessary works.
“Safety Improvement Scheme grants are available. However, councils are reporting that they very seldom receive the required finance to carry out works. The scheme allows for grants of up to €250,000, yet councils generally only receive a fraction of that sum.
“This has left councils in a position where they are unable to upgrade or improve junctions and roundabouts that are currently problematic or unsafe.
“This is leading to potentially very dangerous situations, and it totally unacceptable.
“The government claims that we are in recovery, yet many schemes and grants that were cut or removed entirely have yet to be reinstated.
“Minister for Transport Shane Ross needs to address this matter immediately in order to ensure that our towns and villages are safe for all road users. The Minister can now put his money where his mouth is regarding road safety.”