GOVERNMENT TD Joe McHugh has anounced that 135 people have availed of Stage 1 Humanatarian Aid funding since the Inishowen flood on August 22.
Figures given to the Donegal TD by Social Protection Minister Regina Doherty also show that 13 householders have received Stage 2 payments with another 23 payments currently being processed.
The first of the Stage 3 payments was made this week.
Minister McHugh said Social Protection Staff have also made 36 home visits at the request of homeowners.
“In the days immediately after the flood it was important that those affected got the initial emergency funding under Stage 1 of the programme of relief set up by the Government,” said the Donegal TD.
“The initial stage was to provide emergency income support payments for things like food and clothing in the aftermath of the flood and payments were made immediately.
“So far 13 people have received payments under the second stage with another 23 being processed – and payments pending – to cover items like furniture and other essential household items. It is important that those affected know this stage is open now and they should contact the DSP offices in Buncrana and Carndonagh to make a claim.
“The third stage is also open with longer term financial support to carry out works such as plastering, dry-lining, relaying of floors, re-wiring and painting. Many homeowners won’t be at this stage yet but it’s important they know it is there for them when they are ready to to avail of the scheme.”
Minister McHugh said leaflets explaining the financial supports across a range of areas have been sent to every home in Inishowen.
He said while the payments are means-tested, the level of access is high – with full payments made for those earning €70,000 or less; with even those above that threshold seeing just small adjustments in the benefits.
The recently announced aid package to farmers will see claim forms available early next week, with payments of up to €15,000 available.
The Red Cross will administer aid to small businesses and voluntary groups.
The Fine Gael TD for Donegal added: “It’s very important that all those affected by flooding in Inishowen know we are there to support them and help them, not just now but in the weeks and months ahead. As a Government we will do everything possible to deliver that help. I once again want to urge all those affected by flooding to seek financial support in the days ahead.”