Brendan Smith welcomes blueprint to transform rural Ireland

Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan Monaghan, Brendan Smith, has welcomed the publication of the Government’s “Our Rural Future” strategy that looks to transform and develop rural Ireland.   

Deputy Brendan Smith commented, “The Our Rural Future plan is the most ambitious and transformational policy for rural regional development in decades. It will see the targeted revitalisation of Rural Ireland within 5 years.  

“We have seen how the COVID-19 pandemic has presented changes to living and working patterns and the significant opportunities this presents for communities across Cavan and Monaghan. This policy reflects those opportunities, from remote working and revitalising our town centres to job creation, developing a green economy and enhancing our outdoor amenities.   

“Putting communities first is a priority for Fianna Fáil in government and I look forward to seeing the positive impact this policy will have on communities across Ireland.”  

Deputy Smith outlined some of the key investments being undertaken to maximise investment and meet the long-term needs of villages and towns:  

  • €2.7 billion in the delivery of high-speed broadband to rural areas.  
  • €1 billion under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund to support ambitious projects to regenerate towns and settlements of less than 10,000 people.  
  • €100m for the Town and Village Renewal Scheme – addressing vacant properties and encouraging more people to live in our town centres.  
  • Over €72m in 2021 for high-quality walking and cycling infrastructure targeted at towns and villages across the country.  
  • 400 IDA investments for the regions  
  • 19 Advance Technology Buildings in regional locations by the IDA  
  • Significant investment will be made in remote working facilities, building on more than €50 million invested in the last five years by the Department of Rural and Community Development.  
  • €555m for the maintenance and renewal of the regional and local roads network in 2021 alone.