Council continues to increase spending to support communities across Cork County
Cork County Council has approved its Budget for 2024 totalling over €458 million. This is the first balanced budget Council has adopted in several years and importantly ensures services are maintained and even increased despite continuing high inflation (7.8% for 2022 and 5.1% to October year on year).
Key services such as Housing and Roads will see increases of €18.4m and €22.1 million respectively. The Local Property Tax, payable by householders, remains unchanged with commercial rates also staying at 2023 levels. The SME Grant Incentive Scheme will also continue providing a 3.5% rebate up to a max of €7,000 for each Ratepayer. The increase in operational expenditure reflects Cork County Council’s commitment and ambition to deliver the services needed to enhance urban and rural communities across County Cork.
The Council continues its focus on supporting communities and outdoor resources, evidenced in the creation of a new Service Enhancement Fund, valued at €650,000 together with ongoing maintenance of the €3.3 million General Municipal Allocation, the Village Enhancement Fund and the Town Development Fun.
Climate Action legislation commits Ireland to NetZero emissions by 2050 and a 51% reduction by 2030. The recent destruction caused by Storm Babet across a number of the county’s towns and villages, and in particular the devastation in East Cork, has increased focus on the need to accelerate efforts to combat climate action. The Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications has allocated €1.2 million to Cork County Council from the Climate Action Fund (CAF) to deliver the Community Climate Action Programme (CCAP) addressing both direct climate action, climate education and capacity building. Cork County Council is committed to its current climate adaptation activities across its services.
This commitment is reflected in Council’s Capital Budget Programme through investment in rural work hubs, improving living conditions in urban and rural areas, flood and coastal protection works for vulnerable communities, energy efficiency projects in Council-owned facilities, protection of waterways and sustainable travel projects.
Cork County Council’s €1.5 billion 3-year Capital Programme encompasses current, proposed and potential infrastructural projects to be undertaken by Council between 2024 and 2026. The overall emphasis of this expenditure relates to housing provision, roads, environment, recreation & amenity, and flood programmes.