Council house upgrades

Carbon monoxide alarms and energy upgrades are among the works planned for council houses in Laois this year.

Carbon monoxide alarms and energy upgrades are among the works planned for council houses in Laois this year.

Carbon monoxide alarms will be installed in Laois County Council’s 2,017 council houses in a new programme this year, the council have stated in their 2015 schedule of works, released at last week’s municipal district meetings.

Many of the houses have already received energy efficiency upgrades, with 768 complete and another 364 qualifying for improvements this year, subject to grant approval from the Department of the Environment.

There is €801,000 set aside for housing maintenance.

“Repairs include electrical, plumbing, heating, chimneys and general repairs to roofs. There is a planned maintenance programme for gas and oil boiler maintenance,” the council say.

With “limited funding” they “endeavour to carry out the optimum level of works in accordance with the Tenants Handbook”.

There were 87 properties refurbished for re-letting last year, paid by the Dept of the Environment, Community and Local Government.

The council set aside €352,000 to carry out more re-let repairs to houses that become vacant this year, with an expectation of more grant aid.

Almost €60,000 was spent last year on adapting 19 properties for tenants with disabilities. No allocation has yet been received for 2015 works.