Gormley to adjust Department expenditure


Mr John Gormley TD, Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government has announced that he will be making some adjustments to spending by his Department in 2008, in light of the recent Government discussions on spending cuts.

Following the Government meeting, the Minister indicated that expenditure by his Department will be reduced by €48.3m this year. A reduction of some €8.3m will be made in current expenditure, together with a reduction of €40m in capital spending.

Minister Gormley said - "the reduction of €8m will be absorbed across current spending without impacting on front-line local authority services. We will achieve this by greater cost effectiveness in administration and other smaller savings.” Against a total current spend of €965m in 2008, the Minister is confident that a saving of just over €8m can be managed in the remaining period of the year.

Capital expenditure of €2,233m will be reduced by €40m in 2008. This reduction will be applied to areas where capital spending is less than expected and will not have any impact on the Local Authority Housing Construction or the Water Services Investment programmes. Savings are expected to arise in other capital programme areas during the remainder of the year.

The Minister added - “I am confident that we can maintain momentum on the main construction programmes for housing and water services. These are vital for infrastructural development and environmental protection.”

These expenditure adjustments represent the commencement of further reductions which the Government will bring forward into 2009. The challenges facing the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government in 2009 will be quite significant and the Minister will be working closely with local authorities to achieve greater efficiencies in current spending.

Concluding, the Minister said - “the Government are firmly resolved to provide effective management of the economy  and these decisions are necessary in the national interest.”