Fianna Fáil has described the €10 million fund for homeowners affected by pyrite as inadequate.

The party’s Environment Spokesperson Barry Cowen has called on Environment Minister Phil Hogan to commit to multi-annual funding for pyrite repairs and to reimburse homeowners who have already paid for repairs to their damaged homes. 

Deputy Cowen raised concerns that the government has grossly underestimated the extent of the pyrite problem.

“We have been saying for some time that there are far more than 1,000 homes across the country damaged by pyrite.  While a fund of €10 million is certainly welcome, it is only tip of the iceberg in terms of what is needed,” said Deputy Cowen.

“It’s disappointing that Minister Hogan has failed to make any firm, specific commitments to funding beyond this year to repair homes damaged by pyrite.  His assurances beyond the current fund are far too vague.  It also appears that those homeowners who have been forced to pay for the cost of repairs themselves will not be reimbursed by this fund.  It would be deeply unfair to expect these people, who couldn’t continue to live with the pyrite damage in their homes, to pay the full costs of repairs themselves while future repairs in other homes are paid for by the State.

“It has taken far too long for the State to step in and help people whose homes have been destroyed by pyrite.  What we need now is a much more comprehensive plan, with a realistic assessment of the number homeowners affected by pyrite and a clear commitment on behalf of the State that none of those homeowners are left to bear the full cost of repairs on their own.”