The elected Members for South Dublin County Council have voted to adopt Budget 2021.
The council say the budget provides for approximately €268 million in expenditure on service provision, an increase of nearly 5% on the 2020 budget.
The budget includes €430,000,000 for the commencement of housing projects initiated by South Dublin County Council over the coming twelve months and over €15,000,000 for the maintenance and re-letting works for nearly 10,000 homes.
Speaking following the adoption of the Budget, Daniel McLoughlin, Chief Executive of South Dublin County Council, said:
“The Budget as presented, while mindful of current circumstances, is positive in the context of the plans to support businesses and communities during this difficult time.
“Substantial plans for immediate investment in physical and social infrastructure will serve the local economy well during construction and society well for decades to come.
“The delivery of these services and the design and development of these projects have continued in as normal a way as possible by our tremendously dedicated staff.”
The Draft Budget for 2021 provides for a total expenditure of € 268,019,900 and anticipates income of € 130,796,200 from a range of services and sources including rents, fees, charges, loan repayments, grants and recoupments.
The balance totalling €137,223,700 will be funded from a combination of commercial rates and local property tax.
Specific budgetary provisions were made for:
Economic, Enterprise and Tourism Development
Provision for the current and future generations must include a focus on job retention and creation.
In this regard, investment in existing business and future opportunities are provided for including:
- The continuation of the €1,000,000 Business Support Fund
- Commitment to the delivery of the Council’s Tourism Strategy continues in 2021 with a further provision of €250,000 to help fund tourism infrastructure attractions.
- The potential of Rathfarnham Castle Courtyard and its associated outbuildings will be reviewed and be brought back to the market in 2021, subject to appropriate market conditions
- Delivery of the Tourism Event and Festival Grant scheme will continue to encourage event organisers to consider South Dublin County and ‘Dublin’s Outdoors’ in which to hold their events, building on the ongoing success of the Red Line Book Festival, Flavours of South Dublin and other ongoing events
- Provision of €50,000 has been made for a new marketing plan and associated materials for the expanded Grange Castle Business Park to be procured early in 2021
- A provision of €500,000 has been made to fund the landscape improvements of the N81.
In the context of current operations, SDCC say the following new and enhanced measures are in keeping with their intention to enhance services where possible, on an ongoing basis:
- The commencement of housing projects initiated by South Dublin County Council worth €430,000,000 in the next 12 months
- €15,288,300 on planned/response maintenance and re-letting works for nearly 10,000 homes
- An additional €1,400,000 for the Accelerated Planned Maintenance capital programme
- €2,855,000 on the housing loans service including €330,000 for mortgage protection insurance
- The homeless budget is now set at €3,876,000
- €1,808,100 for Traveller Accommodation maintenance and supports
- €3,284,500 based on anticipated 2021 allocation from the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage (DHLGH), for housing grants for adaptations, mobility aids and essential repairs for disabled, older and other persons
Recreation, Amenity and Community Development
SDCC say the development of social infrastructure in the interests of community integration, health and wellbeing and quality of life is central to their approach to community development.
- €500,000 for the general day-to-day running costs of branch libraries to include provision for North Clondalkin Library, which should open before the end of 2020 subject to public health requirements, and Castletymon Library, which will open in 2021
- €880,000 for the purchase of books, periodicals and other materials
- €96,800 Creative Ireland South Dublin programme supporting community creativity, wellbeing, and innovation
- €224,800 Arts Office programme which includes children’s, youth and community events, activities and festivals has been increased by €50,000 to include deliver a programme of street art on selected buildings in the County as well as a new Arts Resilience Bursary for artists to create a new piece of work in each Local Electoral Area
- €367,500 Music Generation South Dublin is a music education service for children and young people that provides a range of opportunities throughout the County for 0 – 18-year-olds to learn and perform music
- €650,000 for Community Development Grants (including the Community Infrastructure Fund)
- €321,000 was provided for community health and wellbeing initiatives, events, projects and festivals including a renewed Community Endeavour Awards. An additional €60,00 was included for the provision of a fund for Men’s Sheds, provision of Changing Places facilities for community groups and the provision of a mental health programme to be administered by South Dublin County Council
- Provision of €500,000 for the continuation of the teenage facilities programme
- New sports pavilions in Griffeen and Corkagh Park
- The completion of Lucan Leisure Centre in late summer 2021
- The development of new community centres in Saggart, City West and Balgaddy.
In 2019, the Council adopted the inaugural Climate Change Action Plan 2019 – 2024 which provides an opportunity for the Council to clearly illustrate its commitment in this regard, which although ongoing for years, was largely undocumented. To support this plan, the Council will:
- Continue the rollout of our County Pollinator Plan
- Plant 2,500 trees across the County in 2021 – 1,000 trees at on-street locations, 500 trees in parks and open space sites and 1,000 whips or young trees as part of the planting of an urban mini-forest programme.
- The launch of Cycle South Dublin, our ten-year strategy for the development of cycling as a travel mode of choice, into the future. In addition, a specific budget of €250,000 has been included for the upkeep of cycle lanes. A further €55,000 has been provided for data analysis including traffic counts and €40,000 for bicycle lockers. It is anticipated that 10 projects in 2021 will deliver an additional 30km of cycle lanes.
- €300,000 has again been provided for the Climate Action Innovation Fund.
- The continuation of our public lighting LED replacement plan, with plans for a further 2,000 lights to be replaced in 2021, bringing the total to 12,000 since 2015.
- The review of the County Development Plan is underway and will include the development of a Mobility Strategy incorporating plans for cycling, Bus Connects, Dart+ and park and ride facilities.