By Dominic McGrath, PA
The Agriculture Minister has declined to say exactly when a much-anticipated Government proposal on a mica redress scheme will be considered by Cabinet.
Charlie McConalogue, a Donegal TD whose constituency has been at the centre of the mica crisis, said on Sunday that he believed that any proposal brought to Cabinet would deliver 100 per cent redress to homeowners.
However, he was unable to say when the long-awaited scheme would come to Cabinet for approval.
Defective building blocks containing excessive deposits of the mineral mica have seen thousands of properties start to crumble across the country.
An estimated 5,000 homes in Co Donegal are affected, with thousands more understood to have faulty blocks in counties Sligo, Clare and Limerick, with campaigners calling for 100 per cent redress from the Government.
“There has been ongoing engagement right across Government over the last number of weeks in terms of finalising this scheme and getting the details right,” Mr McConalogue said on Sunday.
“The key objective is to ensure that the scheme we put in place is one that is right, fully thought out and covers all the different aspects in terms of the support that homeowners will need.”
He said that he was engaging with Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien and other ministers on the shape of the eventual scheme.
“We don’t want to make the mistake of putting a timeline of when exactly it will go to Cabinet,” he said.
“Everyone is working to make sure it comes to Cabinet as quickly as possible.”
“Homeowners want us to ensure that the scheme is right and it stands the test of time.”
He said that the expects the plan to come to Cabinet “very soon” and re-iterated his backing for a scheme that meets the demands of campaigners.
“I absolutely believe it needs to be 100 per cent and that’s what I’m working with Minister O’Brien to achieve and I’m confident that we will get a scheme that will achieve that.”