Fianna Fáil TD for Longford-Westmeath, Joe Flaherty has welcomed the new remote working actions announced as part of the Our Rural Future development plan.
Deputy Flaherty commented, “We need to enable more people to live and work in rural communities. Part of making this happen is the setting up of remote working hubs across the country. Investing in the best broadband, tech and office infrastructure in local areas is vital for this to work.
“Targeting investment in towns and villages will ensure that they are vibrant places with the right amenities to support community activity and improve the local economy.
“Incentivising the reuse of shuttered and derelict retail units and buildings on our main streets is part of this strategy.”
The Longford TD added: “Moving public sector workers to remote working set-ups will help immeasurably here.”
Some of the key actions around remote working which will be delivered through Our Rural Future include:
- Establish a network of over 400 remote working hubs nationwide, to enable more people to live and work in rural communities.
- Pilot co-working and hot desking hubs for public servants in regional towns.
- Move to 20% remote working in the public sector in 2021, with further annual increase over the next 5 years.
- IDA, Enterprise Ireland and Údarás na Gaeltachta to promote and enable the uptake of remote working across their client base.
- Fund the repurposing of vacant buildings in town centres into remote working hubs.
- Review the tax arrangements for remote working for both employers and employees as part of Budget 2022.
- Introduce legislation in 2021 to provide employees with the right to request remote work.
- Provide funding to Local Authorities to run targeted campaigns to attract remote workers to their area.
- Examine the introduction of specific incentives to attract remote workers and mobile talent to live in rural towns.