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
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.