Fianna Fáil TD for Longford – Westmeath Robert Troy says many businesses affected by flooding have been abandoned by Fine Gael and Labour. He made the comments as more business owners reported that they are unable to apply for emergency Red Cross funding to help cope with the damage caused by flooding.
Deputy Troy pointed out that funding is currently only available for businesses that are located within an area that pays local authority commercial rates. Businesses outside of these areas are unable to apply for emergency funding from the Red Cross.
“The Government made a firm commitment that businesses affected by flooding would be eligible for emergency funding from the Red Cross. The purpose of this funding is to help repair the damage caused by the flooding and to help businesses get back on their feet,” said Deputy Troy.
“However the way the Government has implemented the scheme means that businesses outside of zones subject to commercial rates cannot apply for such funding. Business owners in these areas are essentially being told to fend for themselves and to stop bothering the Government. It’s a dire situation.
“These businesses are fully tax compliant, yet despite this the Government is telling them that they are not eligible for emergency funding. It’s a dangerous policy which will undoubtedly result in the closure of businesses if this decision is not changed. Fine Gael and Labour are putting jobs at risk.
“I’m calling on the Government to urgently review this decision and ensure that all businesses affected by flooding are allowed apply for emergency Red Cross funding,” said Deputy Troy.