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28 May 2022

Deadline looms for Laois communities to tap into Eirgrid money

electricity laois

Electricity substation planned for Laois.

EirGrid, the national electricity grid operator is reminding community groups and not-for-profit organisations that there is still time to submit grant applications for the Laois Kilkenny Community Benefit Fund.

The Community Benefit Fund has been established with a total value of €511,500, with an initial €204,600 available for community groups to apply for.

Priority will be given to groups and not-for-profit organisations in communities adjacent (within 3km) to the line in Laois, including Coolnabacky, Timahoe, Ratheniska, Spink and Ballinakill and in Kilkenny, Ballyragget, Ballyouskill and Tinnalinton. 

The company is in the process of building a major substation in Coolnabacky in Laois which it says is part of a €110 million investment.

Earlier this January, EirGrid provided a virtual workshop and one-to-one clinics on writing a successful grant application. These workshops provided additional supports for potential applicants.

EirGrid’s Chief Infrastructure Officer, Michael Mahon, spoke about the fund.

“EirGrid is stepping up to ensure everyone has a reliable, high quality standard of electricity supply. And, while developing essential infrastructure to ensure this, EirGrid wants to make sure communities and groups are supported in their efforts to increase public wellbeing,” he said.

“We know that when communities work together great things can be achieved, and the Laois Kilkenny Community Benefit Fund is there to help make projects and initiatives a reality,” says the company.

The deadline for submission of applications is Tuesday, February 1 next, at 2pm. 

You can download an application at https://eirgridcommunityfund.submit.com or for more information contact Avril Wilson at avril.wilson@eirgrid.com.

The substation element of the project has been opposed by the Ratheniska Spink Timahoe Action Group since it was planned more than a decade ago. They claim Coolnbacky substation is a threat to the water supply of thousands of residents.

This is refuted by Eirgrid.

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