I welcome the €20 million long-awaited repair scheme that has been approved by Government for homes affected by pyrite and mica. It has been a lengthy journey and I commend Minister English for keeping his word. Now, implementation issues and timeframes must be addressed.
Homeowners have been battling for years on this issue. In many cases, it was a battle to save their homes. I am mindful that many people felt they had no option but to move out. These cases showed us that time is of the essence. Announcements without fixed dates and the guaranteed delivery of funds is not the end of the story. The distress and worry has taken its toll on family life.
As we approach the good weather, many homeowners will want to get repairs underway, including time for surveying and assessing quotes. I am also concerned that there should be no delay in the passage of money directly to homeowners.
Previous schemes have seen money held up at local authority level meaning applicants had to go through multiple processes to access funds they are fully entitled to.
Today, I asked for Minister English to come to the Seanad and provide that clarity around timing and funding that will go some way to ending the nightmare facing those living in pyrite affected homes.