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*Photograph: Eamon Ward

A member of Cabinet has disputed claims from a Clare councillor that a Government scheme providing funding for local authorities to carry out improvement works on private and non-publicly maintained roads was “dead in the water”.

Between 2018 and 2020, 34 local improvement scheme (LIS) were completed in Co Clare with a total value amounting to €1,557,009. Across the county, there are 220 applications for the LIS that are unfulfilled, they have an estimated value of €9.04m.

On Thursday, Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys (FG) announced a total LIS allocation of €828,528 for Clare this year and believed this amount would reduce the backlog in Clare by three to four years.

“Before the allocations were made to the different counties, we asked the local authorities to identify the number of roads they could complete before the end of this year, they sent in their lists and they got their allocation based on their list, I think it will make a difference in some counties, it will reduce the waiting list by three or four years”.

She disputed previous claims by Cllr Shane Talty (FF) that the scheme was “dead in the water”.

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