Council is deciding how to spend cash


Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council has confirmed it is set to receive a windfall of approximately £150,000, but has not as yet confirmed where the money will be spent.

It is one of seven councils to benefit from £700,000 of funding restored following a cut last year. A spokesperson said: “Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council can confirm they will receive approximately £150,000 in restored funding.

“The council welcomes the complete restoration of this funding, however as the money has just been received the council has not made any decision on how this will be used.”

The rates support grant provides money to councils whose budget demands exceed their wealth and the extra money released ranges from £43,000 to Mid and East Antrim District Council to more than £150,000 for Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council.

The other authorities set to benefit are Derry and Strabane, Causeway Coast and Glens, Fermanagh and Omagh, Mid-Ulster and Newry, Mourne and Down.

Environment minister Mark H Durkan said there will be no reduction in the grant for councils in the financial year beginning in April.

“I can confirm that with further close management of my current budget I am now able to allocate a further £700,000 to the rates support grant budget this year,” he confirmed.

“This further amount, coupled with £2.1m already distributed to councils in October, is good news for councils and ratepayers.”