There will be no cuts to local services such as libraries, museums or emergency units in the coming year, council officials have promised during a budget meeting with councillors.
The assurance came when members of the Clonmel Municipal District of Tipperary County Council held their first budget meeting since all-county amalgamation, to approve the allocation of funding for tidy towns projects, festivals, town twinning, district enhancement, development projects and town centre initiatives.
Core funding for all council services will be decided by the county council itself but each of the municipal districts has received a General Municipal Allocation (GMA), based on population.
The Clonmel district, which includes Cahir and outlying towns and villages, is to get €115,175 as part of the GMA county total of €500,000. Commercial rates remain a function of the wider county council.
A number of councillors raised the issue of funding for other services, with Cllr Michael Murphy asking for clarification on money for museums and libraries.
Finance director Liam McCarthy told the meeting: “The same level of funding will be there for our libraries that was there [previously], and our museums. They’ll all be funded centrally [from the county council].”
Asked about emergency service funding, Mr McCarthy said that would remain the same or be increased. ”
Cllr Andy Moloney called for a report on various town twinning committees to see how active they are, with an allocation of €1,500 has been given to town twinning in the area.
Other allocations are €13,000 for festivals and events; €30,000 for tidy towns; €40,175 for “district enhancement initiatives”; €20,500 for Clonmel and Cahir town centre initiatives; and €10,000 for community projects.
Meetings administrator Michael O’Brien said council officials will work on a framework to decide how the money will be divided up between communities but stressed that support will be given to different areas over the course of the council’s five-year term rather than the next 12 months.
“You have to split it in such a way that it’s fair to the whole district,” Cllr Marie Murphy commented.
Mr O’Brien said that, in the case of the tidy towns allocation of €30,000, for example, they will not be giving out 10 grants of €3,000 each to 10 community groups, but giving some money to a smaller amount of committees one year and then looking at other groups in other years of the five-year term.
“We will look at the tidy towns reports and see what gaps are there,” he said. Meetings administrator Michael O’Brien said council officials will work on a framework to decide how the money will be divided up between communities but stressed that support will be given to different areas over the course of the council’s five-year term rather than the next 12 months.
Additional Funding of €86,766 for 2015 has been allocated to the Tipperary Cashel Municipal Authority, members were informed at their October meeting.
Members were told that the allocation was to be divided into three areas; €4,000 for Town Centre projects, €30,000 for Environment and the remainder to Roads.