Galway TD raises concerns about underspending of Government capital funding

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East Galway TD Seán Canney has raised concerns about the €830 million underspend of capital funding in 2021 in vital infrastructure.

Deputy Canney said that some of this underspend has been carried over to 2022, with over €580 million underspent and returned to the exchequer.

He said that €161 million was earmarked for transport, while there were underspends of €276 million in housing and €104 million in health.

“It is concerning that infrastructure development is falling behind targets. I am calling on the Government to use the underspend to target projects that are shovel ready for construction. A good example in transport is Phase 2 of the Western Rail Corridor,” said Deputy Canney.

“This project can commence construction with a matter of months as it does not require planning or any other statutory consents.”

Deputy Canney also requested that the Government re-allocate some of the unspent money to Departments which can spend money and deliver projects quickly for the benefit of communities.

“I believe that unspent money can easily be used to top up the Leader Programme which remains underfunded for the next five years,” he said.

“Likewise, in the Department of Transport money could be allocated to the Local Improvement Scheme (LIS) to supplement the scheme run by the Department of Rural and Community Development as there is a huge demand for roads to be upgraded in rural areas which are not in charge of the Council.

“There are no shortage of projects, and we need to keep providing the necessary infrastructure.”