Spending on Kildare County County’s services for the homeless is estimated to rise this year but it could be hit by cuts in national budgets, Kildare county councillors were told at their annual budget meeting,
In 2013, the annual Budget estimate report said, spending on the homeless service was €873,000 but the Council has agreed that a 15% rise to €1,006,000 for 2014.
In addition service support costs are to rise from €86,321 to €102,925. On the income side, grants from central government for the service are set to rise from €785,700 to €905,400, leaving a gap of €100,600, if one excludes service support costs.
The Council employs Homeless Outreach workers to help homeless people with emergency accommodation issues and assist them get long term care.
The running of the homeless service has been regionalised with Kildare the lead of the group including itself, Meath and Wicklow. A representative regional forum has been set up and meets four times a year.
Cllr. Fiona O’Loughlin said she had concerned her that funds Kildare County Council had earmarked to help homeless people were going towards Sr. Consilio’s addiction service.
She understood these addiction services were funded by the Health Service Executive.
Director of Service, Peter Minnock, said KCC was now the lead authority for dealing with regional homeless people.
He said it remained to be seen whether they would get the full budget from the Department.
Mr. Minnock said they would have to look at the Cuan Mhuire funding in an attempt to bridge any shortage which would occur between income and spending.
He said the three local authorities in the region, Kildare, Wicklow and Meath, would have to carry the difference.