More than 90 Laois groups and clubs share out €284,032 in grants

Conor Ganly


Conor Ganly


Large sum of money found at bank ATM

Portarlington, Mountrath and Mountmellick projects are the big winners in the 2018 round of grants under the annual Community Enhancement Programme (CEP).

Funded by taxpayers money, via the Department of Rural and Community Development, the scheme will provide €284,032 of capital funding to groups in Laois to enhance facilities that are available to communities.

The application process for the CEP is administered through Laois County Council by the Laois Local Community Development Committee (LCDC).

Typical enhancements under the programme include the upgrading of community centres, community amenities, improvements to town parks, common areas and spaces, CCTV equipment, defibrillators, IT equipment and energy efficiency-type projects.

A total of 91 community groups will receive funding under this scheme, with a spread of funding across the county.
Figures obtained by the Leinster Express reveal the recommended amounts.

The Mountrath Development Association Youth Project is the biggest winner. A €12,000 grant is recommended to pay to fit out the centre.

The Tír na nÓg community pre-schoool for disadvantaged children in Portarlington is due to get €10,647 for a new kitchen.
The Mountmellick Christmas tree is likely to get €6,500 and the town's Christmas tree lights committee is due to get €8,000. Both grants are for energy efficient lights.

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County Hall says the CEP is the result of the first significant exercise in the streamlining of schemes and programmes carried out by the Department of Rural and Community Development and it is envisaged that further schemes of this type will be rolled out in 2019.

A meeting of the LCDC was told in August that there had been 94 applications this year. A sub-committee made up of Joe Thompson, Paddy Buggy and Cllr Pauline Madigan evaluated, and the applications were approved at the recent September meeting.