Local flooding issues are the responsibility of county councils, says minister
Local flooding issues are a matter for each local authority to investigate and address. They may carry out flood alleviation works from their own resources or apply to the Office of Public Works (OPW) for funding under the Minor Flood Mitigation Works and Coastal Protection Scheme.
These were the sentiments expressed by the Minister of State for the Office of Public Works and Flood Relief, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran, during Dáil proceedings last week after he was asked by Fianna Fáil’s deputy Charlie McConalogue if there are grants available to assist homeowners to carry out flood defence works to protect their homes from flooding.
The minister said the purpose of the Minor Flood Mitigation Works and Coastal Protection Scheme is to provide funding to local authorities to undertake minor flood mitigation works, or studies, to address localised flooding and coastal protection problems within their administrative areas.
This scheme is not a grant scheme for individual homeowners or private property owners.
He continued: “While individual property owners may benefit from the works, the local authority must be the promoter and proposer of the project, and will be fully responsible for the implementation of the works.
“They must ensure that all relevant and necessary statutory consents are applied for and received. When funding is approved under the scheme, the progression of any works is the responsibility of the local authority.”
The minister, meanwhile, went on to say that Individual Property Protection (IPP) can be effective in mitigating against the adverse consequences for properties at risk of flooding.
It can reduce the damage caused to contents, furniture and fittings in a house or business, but it is not applicable in all situations.
“For example, it may not be suitable in areas of deep or prolonged flooding, or for certain types of properties,” he added.
“The OPW has undertaken a study of IPP to look at the potential for protecting a proportion of those properties that do not form part of the Flood Risk Management Plans (FRMPs).
“OPW will continue to explore possible options for IPP during the course of 2019.”