A boost in funding for Galway County Council has been announced with an extra €4 million allocated from the central government.
Galway West TD Hildegarde Naughton confirmed the extra funding will be delivered to the county council over the next three years.
A change in the way that the government allocates local property tax will also bring additional funds to the county when it comes into effect next year.
“It has been common knowledge that County Galway has been losing out on State funding for the last 20 years due to an error in the base calculation made at that time,” said Deputy Naughton.
Working with Minister for Local Government John Paul Phelan, the Fine Gael TD said an interim increase in funding has been arranged.
She added that this will not be lost under an amalgamated city and county, but roll over to the new combined local authority.
“I have repeatedly made the point to the Minister that our per capita budget is way off target when compared to similar Local Authorities. This has now been accepted and the Council will receive an interim increase in funding.”
“Additionally, I can confirm that changes to be made to the property tax system next year will ensure that Galway gets a bigger share of central funding in the years ahead,” she said.
“Changes to come into force next year will ensure that the distribution of property tax will be skewed towards counties, including Galway, who presently receive the least funding.”
The debate over amalgamating Galway city and county councils has been going on in the Dáil for some time.
An interim report produced by the expert advisory group claims that a unified authority would be more economically viable.
But many of Galway’s TDs have been saying that addressing long standing funding issues for Galway’s local authorities should be the first priority before considering this.