FINN Harps’ plans to develop their new stadium in Stranorlar have hit a set-back with the project left off the Government funding list.
Leas Cheann Comhairle Pat the Cope Gallagher has expressed shock that the Minister for Transport, Sport and Tourism has ‘totally reneged’ on his commitment to deliver the next phase of the stadium.
Last year an allocation of €304,000 was allocated in order to prepare the project for substantial works in 2020, this was directly advised by both Department Officials and Representatives of the Government.
€304,000 has been approved by the Department of Sport under the Sports Capital funding in 2019, the allocation was made to hire a design team and to prepare a bill of quantities for phase one of the project.
“Finn Harps delivered on their end of the bargain and completed the tasks placed on them by the Department,” Deputy Gallagher said.
“The Board of Finn Harps have put major effort and work into this project over the past number of years and none more so that in the past twelve months in preparation for this years funding stated Pat the Cope.
“A major capital application was submitted for the 2020 allocation of Sports Capital Funding, the entire purpose of the funding allocation in 2019, was to prepare an application for major funding in this year’s allocation.
“The Department clearly told Finn Harps that they wanted this project to be completed and taken off their books, but their words were not followed by direct action or the political will to deliver the project for Donegal.”
The €6.7 million project is now left in limbo by the lack of commitment of this Government to deliver this much needed facility for the county, false promises were made by Government representatives in terms of delivering this project.
Real concerns now exist that unless funding is committed to this project, the works already started will deteriorate and crumple on site, due to the fact of being left in an unfinished state for so long.
Deputy Gallagher said: “There is no logic in the decision not to fund this project, works are already commenced on the stadium and a clear commitment was given that funding would be made available in 2020, but like so many Government commitments they were half hearted and piecemeal – given only to get over the moment while no follow on or real delivery was intended.
“I am calling on the Department to conduct a full review of this debacle on their part, and I will be requesting a meeting with the Minister as soon as the Dáil reconvenes.
“Finn Harps deserve better treatment from this Government, today’s decision to leave them without funding once again is a disaster.”Tags: