Revealed: Spending increase of over €1.3m in Carlow's local authority budget for next year

Members will vote on the 2019 budget on Tuesday, November 20

The fifth and final draft of Carlow's local authority budget for 2019 has been published and will come before members on Tuesday, November 20 at 2pm in the Council Chamber at the County Offices on the Athy Road. 

Expenditure included in the 2019 draft budget amounts to €50.37m, an increase of €1.36m on 2018.

An analysis of 2019 income from goods and services revealed that rent from houses will amount to a total of €5.7m of the Council's income with €4.6m coming from Irish Water out of a total of over €15m from goods and services. 

€15,000 of this will come from library fees/fines while income from grants and subsidies will be in the region of €14.2m.

Meanwhile, with regard to expenditure, a provision of €2.52m is included for the Fire Service and €581,200 for street cleaning. 

The costs are outlined in the Protection, Waste Disposal, Recycling, Litter Control, Emergency Services and Pollution Control section. 

This area relates primarily to waste management/recycling, emergency services, pollution control and burial grounds.

The Powerstown landfill site reached capacity and closed in 2018 and consequently the Council will now incur the cost of disposing of its own waste outside the county.

The civic amenity/recycling facility will continue at Powerstown on a trial basis. The net cost of €812,000 has been provided for all waste management and recycling services (an increase of €520,000 when compared with the provision required three years ago in 2016).

A remediation and aftercare fund (circa € 7.7m) is in place for Powerstown and accordingly there is no requirement to raise loan finance for that purpose.

Just over €1.3m (an increase of €410,000) is included for the housing maintenance programme conditional on the addition grants of €305,000.

The Council's local contribution to county roads in 2019 is €1.3m an increase of €56,000 on 2018.

Provision of €554,000 has been made for the upkeep and the maintenance of parks/open spaces an increase of €40,000 which relates to Duckett's Grove enhancements.

€1.3 million is provided for Library Services in Carlow, Tullow, Bagenalstown and Borris which includes an additional €128,000 in respect of the new National Library Strategy.

Library membership will be free in 2019.

€498,000 is included for Visual and the George Bernard Shaw Theatre. Provision is also included for the Arts Programme, Sports Development, and the Carlow County Museum. Total provision of €4.1m.

Miscellaneous Services - including council plant, local elections, agency services, rate collection, member's expenses and motor taxation - has a total provision of €6.69m.

Central Management - including corporate office accommodation, management services, financial management, staff training and recruitment, health and safety and information technology - received a total provision of €7.45m.

Chief executive of Carlow County Council, Kathleen Holohan, said: "This is the fifth and final draft budget the current Council will consider. The adoption of the annual budget is one of the most important functions of the elected Council.

"Stable public finances are an essential prerequisite to the long term economic well being of the county and in this regard the preparation and adoption of the annual budget is a vital component in keeping the Council on a firm financial footing.

"Notwithstanding the difficulties facing the Council the draft 2019 budget is progressive and contains multiple incentives to grow the county both in terms of the local economy and quality of life for the citizens of Carlow."

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