At this week’s meeting of Cork County Council, it was agreed that €1.25 million would be allocated to an Economic Development Fund set up by the local authority.
The funding was set aside at budget time in December 2009 and December 2010. Another approximately €700,000 was set aside for this purpose, and will be made available in the future when the first part of the fund has been allocated and used to create jobs in County Cork.
The €1.25m fund will be used for the following purposes:
- €280,000 – Capital funding in the form of financial contributions to companies that show a capacity to create jobs and have been recommended by the County Enterprise Boards or Local Development Agencies (LEADER Groups).
- €220,000 – Provision of bank guarantees for companies unable to secure adequate banking finance.
- €125,000 – Funding of a partnership between Cork County Council and the Rubicon Centre of Cork Institute of Technology to provide an Outreach Programme to specific towns in County Cork.
- €300,000 – Funding to support the establishment of Enterprise Centres and hot desking facilities.
- €60,000 – Promotion of Festivals and Conferences.
- €150,000 – Fund to be used to finance joint initiatives with Cork City Council and the Cork Chamber of Commerce.
- €115,000 – Funding of Business Events organised by Cork County Council
The funding will be allocated to ventures that are referred by the County Enterprise Boards, Enterprise Ireland, and the Local Development Companies (LEADER Groups). This will avoid duplication and dramatically reduce the length of time that enterprises will have to wait for a decision on their application for funding.
An Evaluation Committee of three members, at least one of whom will be a business representative, will be established by the County Manager, Martin Riordan to adjudicate on applications.
Theis funding is indeed very welcome, and will hopefully be a successful support for job creation across County Cork, and in particular North Cork where it is so badly needed.