West Donegal councillor says spending focus is on the east

Cllr Ó Domhnaill said west Donegal railway walk projects ‘depend on goodwill of community groups’

West Donegal councillor says spending focus is on the east

A Glenties Municipal District councillor has said the council executive is not focusing enough money on west Donegal. 

"The management of the council are not focusing enough money on west Donegal, and focusing all their energies on getting money for the east side of the county,” Fianna Fáil Cllr. Seamus Ó Domhnaill said, after Tuesday’s meeting of the Glenties district.

Cllr. Ó Domhnaill had raised his concerns earlier, during discussion of a feasibility study into linking local railway walks into a long walk from Burtonport to Letterkenny.

"If you look at areas closer to the border they’re receiving millions in funding and we have to take money out of the Development Fund Initiative – 5,000,10,000, 15,000 – and depend on the goodwill of community groups to get the work done,” Cllr. Ó Domhnaill said.

“It’s a slight on the west of the county,” he said.

In December, the Special EU Programmes body announced €14.86 million was awarded to North West Greenways Network for 46.5 kilometres of new greenways connecting Donegal to Derry and Strabane.

Cllr. Ó Domhnaill said the west of the county, where the community-led Old Railway Walk in Burtonport was one of the county’s first railway walks, has been left “in the ha’penny place”. 

But Charles Sweeney, area manager for community, culture and enterprise, said the north-west funding announced in December was only available to projects that linked population centres across borders.

"We’re after any funding we can get at any time,” he said. 

Donegal County Council and Údarás na Gaeltachta have match funded a feasibility study to examine the Letterkenny to Burtonport old railway route for a possible walk. 

See Thursday's Donegal Democrat for more.

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