Harkin ‘gutted’ by minister’s response on essential funding for Sligo Airport

A Sligo/Leitrim Independent TD has told the Dail that she was ‘gutted’ by the response of a government minister to her request for essential funding for Sligo Airport.

Deputy Marian Harkin says it is astonishing that any TD would have to stand up and plead for money for Sligo Airport, given the essential services it provides.

Sligo Airport has not received any government funding for the past ten years.

And it seems it’s unlikely it will receive any funding soon, judging by the response of Junior Transport Minister Hildegarde Naughton to Deputy Harkin in the Dail.

Deputy Harkin began her Dail speech by outlining the current situation at Sligo Airport.

Deputy Harkin added that given the essential nature of services at Sligo Airport, it was astonishing that she or any other TD would have to stand up and say the services will not survive in a safe or sustainable way unless it gets the funding it now needs.

She told the Dail that the airport needs €500,000 but will commit €200,000 itself, meaning that all it is looking for is €300,000, plus €100,000 per annum for the next three years to maintain services.

However, the response from Minister Hildegarde Naughton brought little comfort to Deputy Harkin.

And it seems that the improvement of major roads has militated against airports such as Sligo getting funding.

Deputy Harkin said she was ‘just gutted’ by what the minister had said.

And she laid out clearly what she believes will happen if Sligo Airport does not get the funding it desperately needs to keep its services going.