PEARSE Doherty has again called on the Government to release funding for the new Finn Harps stadium immediately.
Speaking in the Dáil last night, the Sinn Féin TD said that this is a shovel-ready project and that this is the type of funding that should be made available to ensure that local jobs are created and that communities are left with long-lasting improved amenities.
Deputy Doherty said: “We need to ensure that the projects which were failed by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael over the last 10 years are rectified.
“I’m disappointed that the Government is bragging about a €9 billion capital investment plan. This isn’t even nearly enough or near the level of investment that we need.
“There are shovel ready projects that need the go-ahead from the Government. The Finn Harps stadium in Donegal is one such project.
“Over €1.2 million was spent on this project years ago. It is now lying there with grass growing over it.
“It is ready. It’s got the planning permission. It could help put people to work in a county which has the highest proportion of people in the State on the Pandemic Unemployment Payment; but the Government won’t sanction it.
“The €1.2 million investment is now left withering and it is not acceptable”.
Deputy Doherty also reiterated his call today for other Donegal representatives to back the need for the remaining funding to be released by Government to get this project over the line as a matter of urgency. The Deputy has written to Minister Catherine Martin and Minister for State Jack Chambers to extend an invitation to them to visit the site of the new stadium.
Earlier this year, three months were raised at the January meeting of Donegal County Council after plans for ‘The Donegal Stadium’ in Stranorlar were left in limbo after being left off the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport funding allocation.
At the time, Mr Liam Ward, Director of Community Development & Planning Services at Donegal County Council, stated that the council is willing to meet with the Finn Harps board and continue its support for the development and completion of the Donegal Community Stadium in Stranorlar.
Harps expected the €6.7million project to be included in spite of a prior commitment from the Department to committed to 100 per cent funding of phase one: a 1,900-seater stand, changing rooms, offices, a new pitch and floodlights.
Work has stalled on the development since late 2014 when the structure of the stand was first erected.
In 2018, the Department issued a €304,000 grant to progress design work and to provide up-to-date costing for completion of the work. Previously, €1.2million was provided between two allocations by a previous Government in 2007 and 2008.Tags: