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Deadline for Increased Cost of Business (ICOB) Grant fast approaching

Increased Cost of Business Grant

As part of Budget 2024, the Government signed off on a package of €257m for the Increased Cost of Business (ICOB) Grant as a vital measure for small and medium businesses.

Waterford City & County Council, funded through Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE), is managing the rollout of the grant to qualifying businesses.  Closing date for businesses to confirm eligibility and to upload verification details is May 1st 2024.

Eligible businesses will receive a once-off grant payment. The amount of the grant payable to eligible businesses is based on the value of the Commercial Rates bill the business received in 2023. However, it is not a Commercial Rates waiver and businesses should continue to pay their Commercial Rates bill as normal.

What is the purpose of the grant?  The grant is available to qualifying businesses as a contribution towards the rising costs faced by businesses. The grant is intended to aid businesses but is not intended to directly compensate for all increases in wages, or other costs, for every business.

How much is the grant?  The grant is based on the value of the Commercial Rates bill received by an eligible business in 2023.

– For qualifying businesses with a 2023 Commercial Rate bill of <€10,000, the ICOB grant will be paid at a rate of 50% of the business’s Commercial Rate bill for 2023.

– For qualifying businesses with a 2023 Commercial Rate bill of between €10,000 and €30,000, the ICOB grant will be €5,000.

– Businesses with a 2023 Commercial Rates bill greater than €30,000 are not eligible to receive an ICOB grant.

What businesses are eligible to receive the grant?  The following are the main qualifying criteria:

  • Your business must be a commercially trading business currently operating from a property that is commercially rateable.
  • Your business must have been trading on 1st February 2024 and you must intend to continue trading for at least three months from the date you verify your information.
  • You must provide confirmation of your bank details.
  • Your business must be rates compliant. Businesses in performing payment plans may be deemed to be compliant.
  • Your business must be tax compliant and must possess a valid Tax Registration Number (TRN).

Please note that Waterford City & County Council reserves the right to claw back any grant payment which is later found to be incorrect. This includes any circumstances such as error by the recipient business or the local authority making the payment, or where a business makes a false declaration of eligibility.

What is the closing date?  The closing date for businesses to confirm eligibility and to upload verification details is May 1st 2024.

Where can I find out further information?  Correspondence and guidance have been issued to qualifying commercially rateable businesses.  In addition, an FAQ is available online and you should refer to this guidance and FAQ prior to making your submission.

For further information about the ICOB Grant visit https://bit.ly/Waterford-ICOB

If you have queries regarding your Commercial Rates account including outstanding balances, contact Waterford City & County Council at rates@waterfordcouncil.ie.  Our team are happy to discuss any balances outstanding on your rates and what steps can be taken to ensure compliance with the scheme.

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Scoláireachtaí Gaeltachta 2024

Scoláireachtaí Gaeltachta 2024

Tá áthas ar Oifig na Gaeilge, Comhairle Cathrach & Contae Phort Láirge a fhógairt go bhfuil sé i gceist Scoláireachtaí Gaeltachta a bhronnadh ar dhaltaí meánscoile ó Phort Láirge i mbliana.

Bronnfaidh Oifig na Gaeilge scoláireacht(aí) ar dhalta(í) a chónaíonn i gCathair nó i gContae Phort Láirge (laistigh de limistéar riaracháin na Comhairle) chun freastal ar Chúrsa Samhraidh* de chuid Choláiste na Rinne i Rinn Ó gCuanach.

*Braithfidh dátaí an chúrsa ar an saghas scoláireachta a bhronnfar – scoláireacht lae nó scoláireacht chónaithe.

Is féidir foirmeacha iarratais agus sonraí iomlána na scoláireachta a fháil trí theagmháil a dhéanamh le:

Máire Seosaimhín Breathnach, Oifigeach Gaeilge, Comhairle Cathrach & Contae Phort Láirge, Oifigí Cathartha, Dún Garbhán, Co Phort Láirge Teil: 058 22001 R-phost: msbreathnach@waterfordcouncil.ie

Sé an t-am agus an dáta deiridh a nglacfar le hiarratais ná 5.00i.n. ar an Aoine, 3 Bealtaine 2024


The Irish Office, Waterford City & County Council is delighted to announce Gaeltacht Scholarships for second level student(s) from Waterford this summer.

A Scholarship(s) from the Irish Office will be available for a student(s) living in Waterford City or County (within the Council’s administrative area) to attend one of Coláiste na Rinne’s two-week summer courses* in the Gaeltacht area of west Waterford.

*The dates of the course will depend on the type of scholarship received – a day scholarship or a boarding scholarship.

Application forms and full details of the terms and conditions of the scholarships are available by contacting:

Máire Seosaimhín Breathnach, Irish Office, Waterford City & County Council, Civic Offices, Dungarvan, Co Waterford Tel: 058 22001 E-mail: msbreathnach@waterfordcouncil.ie

The final time and date for receipt of applications is 5.00pm on Friday, 3rd May 2024

Open : Community Recognition Fund 2024

Community Recognition FundOn 15th March 2024, Minister for Rural and Community Development Heather Humphreys and Minister of State Joe O’Brien announced details of a €50 million Community Recognition Fund. The allocation for Waterford is €1,436,394, including €71,819 for administration.

This major initiative follows on from the 2023 Community Recognition Fund and aims to support the development of community infrastructure and facilities for the benefit of the entire community, in recognition of the contribution being made by communities across the country in welcoming and hosting significant numbers of arrivals from Ukraine and other countries. It is separate in its objectives and scope to any other public funding streams which aim to support the development of public service needs arising from the significant number of arrivals from Ukraine and other countries.

The scheme details set out that only areas which have high levels of new arrivals will be deemed eligible for this scheme.

The minimum level of funding for an individual project is €50,000 and the maximum is €500,000, with those in excess of €200,000 requiring a specific business case. Projects must be capital in nature, address needs in their areas and deliver medium-long term benefits for the entire community.

It will be competitive with specific evaluation criteria. Interested groups will need to outline their capacity to deliver their projects including details of the track record of project partners and experience of delivering similar projects.

Groups should consider their respective project requirements, clear projected costs, planning dependencies and demonstrate how their project will benefit the entire community.  Projects must be achievable within the allowed timeframes.  Favourable consideration will be given to groups who can provide match funding.

Smaller projects cannot be artificially combined to meet the minimum threshold of €50,000 – while the 2023 scheme provided funding for small scale investment in clubs and communities (e.g., for small scale equipment), the focus of the 2024 scheme is on projects of greater scale and impact.

The possible types of capital projects that can be funded under the scheme include:

  • development, enhancement or refurbishment of community or cultural facilities including play areas, walkways, parks, community/sensory gardens including communication boards, allotments, and recreational areas;
  • development, enhancement or refurbishment of local club and sports facilities including facilities such as community swimming pools, changing rooms, toilets, digital aids such as score / information boards etc.
  • enhancement to school/parish facilities which are open to use by all of the community after school hours;
  • purchase of larger scale equipment for local clubs, festivals, community events and organisations e.g., music, arts or sports equipment that benefit the full community;
  • transport infrastructure such as the purchase of community vehicles, bus shelters and attendant information boards;
  • projects that help address dereliction and/or wider local economic and community development objectives;
  • purchase and refurbishment of vacant or derelict buildings for community use where a clear need is identified.

Deadline : Wednesday, May 15th 2024 at 4:00 PM

Reminder: Expressions of Interest sought for 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme

Town & Village Renewal logo

Waterford City & County Council will administer the 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme funded by the Department of Rural & Community Development. The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is funded under Project Ireland 2040 and is a key initiative of Our Rural Future – Ireland’s Rural Development Policy 2021-2025. The objectives of the 2024 Town and Village Renewal Scheme are focused to align with the commitments within Our Rural Future and the Town Centre First policy documents.

The focus of the Town & Village Renewal Scheme is on ensuring the development of Waterford’s rural towns and villages and making them more attractive places to live and work and increase their economic potential.

Waterford City & County Council now seeks expressions of interest from towns and villages, for funding of suitable projects under this initiative. Expression of interest form and details of the Scheme’s outline can be obtained by e-mailing townvillagerenewal@waterfordcouncil.ie and completed expression of interest forms are to be returned before 5.00pm Friday 19th April 2024.

All applications will be subject to a selection process using National Criteria.  Selected expression of interest applications will be developed into detailed bids for consideration for the 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme.

Meabhrúchán : Scéim Athnuachana Bailte & Sráidbhailte 2024 Léiriú Spéise

Town & Village Renewal logoRiarfaidh Comhairle Cathrach & Contae Phort Láirge Scéim Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte 2024, arna maoiniú ag an Roinn Forbartha Tuaithe agus Pobail. Maoinítear an Scéim Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte faoi Thionscadal Éireann 2040 agus is príomhthionscnamh í de chuid Ár dTodhchaí Tuaithe — Beartas Forbartha Tuaithe na hÉireann 2021-2025. Tá cuspóirí Scéim Athnuachana na mBailte agus na Sráidbhailte 2024 dírithe ar ailíniú a dhéanamh leis na gealltanais laistigh dár gcáipéisÍ pholasaí Ár dTodhchaí Tuaithe agus Tús Áite do Lár an Bhaile.

Tá an Scéim Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte dírithe ar a chinntiú go bhforbrófar bailte agus sráidbhailte tuaithe i bPort Láirge agus áiteanna níos tarraingtí a dhéanamh díobh chun cónaí agus oibriú iontu agus chun a n-acmhainneacht eacnamaíoch a mhéadú.

Tá léirithe spéise ó bhailte agus ó shráidbhailte á lorg anois ag Comhairle Cathrach & Contae Phort Láirge chun tionscadail oiriúnacha a mhaoiniú faoin tionscnamh seo. Is féidir foirm léirithe spéise agus sonraí faoi imlíne na Scéime a fháil trí ríomhphost a chur chuig townvillagerenewal@waterfordcouncil.ie agus tá foirmeacha léirithe spéise comhlánaithe le seoladh ar ais roimh 5.00i.n. Dé hAoine 19 Aibreán 2024.

Beidh gach iarratas faoi réir próiseas roghnúcháin a úsáideann Critéir Náisiúnta. Forbrófar iarratais léirithe spéise roghnaithe ina dtairiscintí mionsonraithe lena mbreithniú do Scéim
Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte 2024.

Supporting Waterford Communities Fund 2024 recipients

Waterford City and County Council, at its plenary meeting on 14th March 2024, approved the attached allocations under the Supporting Waterford Communities Fund 2024. There are a total of 288 recipients of the scheme.

The funding was available to residents associations, community groups and sports clubs which are engaged in providing community services or carrying out improvement works to local communities.  The initiative provides funding to support groups, with their running costs such as utility or insurance bills, as well as with improvements of local facilities. Groups can use the funding to carry out necessary repairs and to purchase equipment such as tables and chairs, tools and signage, laptops and printers, lawnmowers, canopies and training equipment.

Reminder: Expressions of Interest sought for 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme

Town & Village Renewal logo

Waterford City & County Council will administer the 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme funded by the Department of Rural & Community Development. The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is funded under Project Ireland 2040 and is a key initiative of Our Rural Future – Ireland’s Rural Development Policy 2021-2025. The objectives of the 2024 Town and Village Renewal Scheme are focused to align with the commitments within Our Rural Future and the Town Centre First policy documents.

The focus of the Town & Village Renewal Scheme is on ensuring the development of Waterford’s rural towns and villages and making them more attractive places to live and work and increase their economic potential.

Waterford City & County Council now seeks expressions of interest from towns and villages, for funding of suitable projects under this initiative. Expression of interest form and details of the Scheme’s outline can be obtained by e-mailing townvillagerenewal@waterfordcouncil.ie and completed expression of interest forms are to be returned before 5.00pm Friday 19th April 2024.

All applications will be subject to a selection process using National Criteria.  Selected expression of interest applications will be developed into detailed bids for consideration for the 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme.

Waterford receives €506,693 in funding for Built Heritage

Department logo

Malcolm Noonan TD, Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform at the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage has announced funding under 2 schemes for Protected Structures and historic buildings – the Built Heritage Investment Scheme (BHIS) 2024 and the Historic Structures Fund (HSF) 2024.

In Waterford, funding of €242,400 will be provided for 27 projects under the BHIS scheme and will support  works such as   the repair of historic  roofs,  walls and chimneys, repair of joinery and  repair of historic stained glass  for private and public buildings in the city and county . This includes  €73,793  which has been ring- fenced  specifically for thatch house projects

Funding of €264,000 has been allocated  for 4 projects under the HSF  €50,000  for Mount Melleray  €50,000  Whitfield Court, €50,000  for  Curraghmore House  and €114,000 for St Augustine’s Church, Abbeyside, Dungarvan.

Reminder: Town Centre First funds available for Waterford town and villages

Waterford City & County Council are seeking expressions of interest from established village/town committees seeking assistance with developing their local town/village development.

Town Centre First funds are available for a project development measure; development of these proposals must be undertaken in consultation with the Councils appointed Town Regeneration Officer and local town/village community and business interests. Ideally, projects will have been identified as part of a town plan, health check or similar study, produced for the town or village. Projects that cannot demonstrate that a consultative process has been undertaken to ascertain the views of local community and businesses will not be permitted.

Funding may be awarded for costs such as detailed design, planning, procurement, professional fees, assessments, and other development costs.
This initiative will compliment other funding initiatives within the Department, including the Town and Village Renewal Scheme and the Rural Regeneration Development Fund.

Maximum funding amount available is €50,000 per project with a grant rate of 90% of the total project costs.  Two applications from Waterford will be forwarded to the Department of Rural and Community Development for consideration of approval.

The expression of interest form should be completed with supporting documentation etc and emailed back to tcf@waterfordcouncil.ie by 4.00pm, Wednesday 20th March 2024.  Late applications cannot be considered.

Scéim Athnuachana Bailte & Sráidbhailte 2024 Léiriú Spéise

Town & Village Renewal logoRiarfaidh Comhairle Cathrach & Contae Phort Láirge Scéim Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte 2024, arna maoiniú ag an Roinn Forbartha Tuaithe agus Pobail. Maoinítear an Scéim Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte faoi Thionscadal Éireann 2040 agus is príomhthionscnamh í de chuid Ár dTodhchaí Tuaithe — Beartas Forbartha Tuaithe na hÉireann 2021-2025. Tá cuspóirí Scéim Athnuachana na mBailte agus na Sráidbhailte 2024 dírithe ar ailíniú a dhéanamh leis na gealltanais laistigh dár gcáipéisÍ pholasaí Ár dTodhchaí Tuaithe agus Tús Áite do Lár an Bhaile.

Tá an Scéim Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte dírithe ar a chinntiú go bhforbrófar bailte agus sráidbhailte tuaithe i bPort Láirge agus áiteanna níos tarraingtí a dhéanamh díobh chun cónaí agus oibriú iontu agus chun a n-acmhainneacht eacnamaíoch a mhéadú.

Tá léirithe spéise ó bhailte agus ó shráidbhailte á lorg anois ag Comhairle Cathrach & Contae Phort Láirge chun tionscadail oiriúnacha a mhaoiniú faoin tionscnamh seo. Is féidir foirm léirithe spéise agus sonraí faoi imlíne na Scéime a fháil trí ríomhphost a chur chuig townvillagerenewal@waterfordcouncil.ie agus tá foirmeacha léirithe spéise comhlánaithe le seoladh ar ais roimh 5.00i.n. Dé hAoine 19 Aibreán 2024.

Beidh gach iarratas faoi réir próiseas roghnúcháin a úsáideann Critéir Náisiúnta. Forbrófar iarratais léirithe spéise roghnaithe ina dtairiscintí mionsonraithe lena mbreithniú do Scéim
Athnuachana Bailte agus Sráidbhailte 2024.

Sláintecare Healthy Community Seed Fund 2024

Sláintecare Healthy Communities Programme

Sláintecare Healthy Communities Programme is inviting applications for its € 75,000 Seed Fund that is available to projects tackling Health Inequalities and address the Social Determinants of Health in Waterford City areas covered by the project.

There will be maximum of 4 projects funded, and priority will be given to partnership projects where other partner(s) will provide funding and should show the sustainability and long-term impact of the project.

Criteria and Eligibility

• Only one application allowed per group, collaboration with other groups is encouraged.

• Applying organisations must be formally constituted and registered with CRO.

• Applicants must provide evidence of relevant policies/safeguards if the funding will be used in relation to children, young people or vulnerable adults.

• Funded projects should be available to wider community use.

• Group/organisations must have a bank/credit union account in their own groups name. Applicants will no longer be able to use an umbrella account.

• Proposed project area/ recipients/ beneficiaries should be within the Electoral divisions in Waterford covered by the Sláintecare Healthy Communities Programme (see the map).

Applications should be submitted through this link:  https://forms.office.com/e/n3GAGGMHDW and the deadline for applications is 5pm Friday 5th April 2024.

For more information or to receive a paper-based application form please contact Ovi: OMatiut@waterfordcouncil.ie

Expressions of Interest sought for 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme

Town & Village Renewal logo

Waterford City & County Council will administer the 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme funded by the Department of Rural & Community Development. The Town and Village Renewal Scheme is funded under Project Ireland 2040 and is a key initiative of Our Rural Future – Ireland’s Rural Development Policy 2021-2025. The objectives of the 2024 Town and Village Renewal Scheme are focused to align with the commitments within Our Rural Future and the Town Centre First policy documents.

The focus of the Town & Village Renewal Scheme is on ensuring the development of Waterford’s rural towns and villages and making them more attractive places to live and work and increase their economic potential.

Waterford City & County Council now seeks expressions of interest from towns and villages, for funding of suitable projects under this initiative. Expression of interest form and details of the Scheme’s outline can be obtained by e-mailing townvillagerenewal@waterfordcouncil.ie and completed expression of interest forms are to be returned before 5.00pm Friday 19th April 2024.

All applications will be subject to a selection process using National Criteria.  Selected expression of interest applications will be developed into detailed bids for consideration for the 2024 Town & Village Renewal Scheme.

Increased Cost of Business (ICOB) Grant

As part of Budget 2024, the Government signed off on a package of €257m for the Increased Cost of Business (ICOB) Grant as a vital measure for small and medium businesses. Waterford City and County Council, funded through Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE), will manage the rollout of the grant to qualifying businesses.

Eligible businesses will receive a once-off grant payment. The amount of the grant payable to eligible businesses is based on the value of the Commercial Rates bill the business received in 2023. However, it is not a Commercial Rates waiver and businesses should continue to pay their Commercial Rates bill as normal.

What is the purpose of the grant?

The grant is available to qualifying businesses as a contribution towards the rising costs faced by businesses. The grant is intended to aid businesses but is not intended to directly compensate for all increases in wages, or other costs, for every business.

How much is the grant?

The grant is based on the value of the Commercial Rates bill received by an eligible business in 2023.

– For qualifying businesses with a 2023 Commercial Rate bill of <€10,000, the ICOB grant will be paid at a rate of 50% of the business’s Commercial Rate bill for 2023.

– For qualifying businesses with a 2023 Commercial Rate bill of between €10,000 and €30,000, the ICOB grant will be €5,000.

– Businesses with a 2023 Commercial Rates bill greater than €30,000 are not eligible to receive an ICOB grant.

What businesses are eligible to receive the grant?

The following are the main qualifying criteria:

  • Your business must be a commercially trading business currently operating from a property that is commercially rateable.
  • Your business must have been trading on 1st February 2024 and you must intend to continue trading for at least three months from the date you verify your information.
  • You must provide confirmation of your bank details.
  • Your business must be rates compliant. Businesses in performing payment plans may be deemed to be compliant.
  • Your business must be tax compliant and must possess a valid Tax Registration Number (TRN).

Please note that Waterford City and County Council reserves the right to claw back any grant payment which is later found to be incorrect. This includes any circumstances such as error by the recipient business or the local authority making the payment, or where a business makes a false declaration of eligibility.

How soon can businesses avail of the grant?

An online system is being developed to manage the submission of essential information. Waterford City and County Council will write shortly to businesses with further details, including how to register and how to submit information online. The system is expected to be available in mid-March.

What is the closing date?

The closing date for businesses to confirm eligibility and to upload verification details will be 1st May 2024.

Where can I find out further information?

Further correspondence and guidance will be issued to commercially rateable businesses in the next few weeks. In addition, an FAQ will be available online when the grant scheme opens. You should refer to this guidance and FAQ prior to making your submission.

If you have queries regarding your Commercial Rates account including outstanding balances, contact Waterford City and County Council at rates@waterfordcouncil.ie. Our team are happy to discuss any balances outstanding on your rates and what steps can be taken to ensure compliance with the scheme.

Funding available for heritage projects in Waterford

The Heritage Council is now accepting applications from community groups and not for profit non-governmental organisations in Waterford for its Community Heritage Grant Scheme 2024. All relevant information is available from the Heritage Council’s website here.

A broad range of project types are eligible for funding under the scheme including:

  • Conservation works to collections, objects or places, including natural heritage projects e.g. control of invasive species or habitat restoration works; conservation works to buildings, including churches; stabilisation works to ruined structures;
  • Surveys, reports, plans, and audits to inform the future management of buildings and monuments, habitats, collections, or objects.
  • Accessibility projects that make heritage activities more accessible for people with disabilities e.g. building ramps, automatic doors, handrails, tactile interpretation
  • Projects that help people engage more with their heritage e.g. interactive maps, videos, virtual exhibitions, podcasts, websites
  • Purchase of specialised equipment e.g archival boxing for vulnerable documents, monitoring equipment for humidity or light, interpretation/multimedia equipment, specialised software
  • Projects that address the heritage of minority groups e.g an oral history project documenting Traveller heritage
  • Training in traditional skills and crafts e.g. workshops on skills such as roofing, thatch, dry stone walling etc.
  • Citizen science projects on environmental conservation

Last year, seven Waterford-based projects were funded through the scheme. These included the restoration of an 18th century oil painting of the Medieval Cathedral in Waterford, and the funding conservation management report of a Well House at Mount Malleray Abbey (photos available below). For an overview of all projects funded under the scheme in previous years, see list of 2023 recipients here and 2022 recipients here.

The minimum grant that can be requested through the scheme is €500. The maximum is €25,000.

The closing date for applications is Monday, 25th of March 2024 at 5pm. Applications must be made via the Heritage Council’s online grants management system. Funded projects must be completed by 15th of November 2024. Full details are available here

The Heritage Council will host a Zoom information webinar on the scheme at 12 noon on the 4th of March with general application advice followed by a question and answers session. The event will be recorded and available on our website for viewing afterwards. Registration details are available on the site above.