Deputy Michael Ring

  • €3.3 million has been allocated to the LEADER Programme in Mayo under the Transitional LEADER Programme for the period 2021-2022.

    Deputy Michael Ring says it is an important component of “Our Rural Future”– the Government’s five year strategy for Rural Ireland.  The funding will support locally-led projects which focus on many of the key themes of “Our Rural Future” such as building capacity and empowering local communities, embracing opportunities in the green economy, supporting remote working and the digital transformation, developing our outdoor amenities and creating jobs in rural areas.

    The new programme is now open for applications and deputy Ring is encouraging communities and local enterprises who wish to avail of funding to make contact with their Local Development Company to discuss their plans.

  • Businesses in County Mayo have, to date, received just short of 5 million euro from the Government’s COVID-19 Restart Grant to help them get back on their feet.

    Mayo County Council is responsible for administering the Government’s Restart Grant. 

    Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring says the total funding to Mayo businesses to date from the scheme is €4,800,000 and he claims the funding is crucial to help businesses to make a come-back after what has been such a difficult few months.

    “The funding is designed to help businesses with the costs associated with reopening and re-employing workers following COVID-19 closures. Businesses can avail of between €2,000 and €10,000 for this purpose”, he explained.

    Applications for the Restart Grant are available from Mayo County Council and the deputy is urging all small business owners in Mayo to apply for the grant to help them get up and running again after COVID-19.


  • The Hot School Meals programme is set to be significantly expanded this year.

    Some 35,000 students across 189 schools will benefit from hot meals - an almost 5 fold increase on the number last year.

    Five primary schools in Mayo are to benefit from the programme, according to Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring.

    He says the Hot Meals Programme is a major initiative to encourage school attendance and consequently can facilitate better educational outcomes for children  

    The schools in Mayo selected for the Hot Schools Programme are:-


    Roll Number

    School Name

    Address 1

    Address 2

    Address 3


    S N An Tsraith

    Bun Na Habhann

    Beal An Atha

    Co Mhaigh Eo


    Barnatra N S


    Co Mayo



    S N Dubh Thuama

    Gaoth Saile

    Beal An Atha

    Co Mhaigh Eo


    Beannchor N S



    Co Mayo


    Gaelscoil na gCeithre Maol

    Aonad 3, Pairc Gno

    Bothar Cill Alla Beal an Atha

    Co. Mhaigh Eo



  • Almost 80 million euro has been allocated to Mayo County Council for national roads in the county in 2021.

    Mayo deputy Michael Ring says €78,313,699 has been granted for improvement works and €1.3 million has been allocated for maintenance works on the county’s national roads.

    He says the monies will allow for maintenance and improvement works and will significantly improve the condition of the roads.


    The official opening of Bofeenaun Playground takes place tomorrow(Tuesday). The development of the playground was supported by funding from the 2019 CLÁR Programme. 

     Deputy Michael Ring says the playground is a wonderful resource in the community and will provide hours of fun for the children of Bofeenaun and the surrounding areas, and also for visitors to the area.

    The Fine Gael Deputy says the passion and commitment of local people delivering these types of projects really aids in making rural Ireland a place where people want to live, work and prosper.

  • NPHET are making up the rules as it goes along and it’s not acceptable, that’s the view of Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring. He is calling for NPHET meetings to be made open to the public, insisting that other voices in addition to NPHET need to be heard as the country now tries to re-open from the severe Covid Restrictions.

    As the teaching Unions meet in national conference this week, the Mayo deputy strongly believes that any commitments given by government to teachers in terms of vaccination prioritisation now needs to be honoured.

    He believes that NPHET has too much power, as a body that has not been elected by the people.

    Deputy Ring has been speaking to Midwest News Editor Teresa O'Malley this lunchtime about why he wants the National Public Health Emergency Team –NPHET’s meetings to be open to the public


  • Mayo deputy Michael Ring is confident that Joe Biden as US President will be back in Ballina, Castlebar and Westport over the term of his office.
    In 2016, the people of Mayo came out on to the streets in these towns, in their thousands, to meet and shake hands with Joe Biden as US Vice President.
    Deputy Ring told Midwest News that today is a great day for Joe Biden and his family, and for Mayo, and for Ireland.
    He described Joe Biden as a gentle and friendly man who never misses a chance to refer to his Irish heritage. 
    "He now faces a very tough job leading a very divided US and I certainly wish him well with the many challenges ahead of him", deputy Ring stated.
    There’s excitement and pride across county Mayo today as Joe Biden is set to become the  46th US President at a scaled-back ceremony in Washington this evening.
    US flags are flying high outside the homes of members of the Knockmore based, Blewitt family as they are related to Mr Biden. The family link is through his mother, Jean. Her grandfather Edward Blewitt’s parents travelled from Ballina to the United States during the Famine in the 1840s. The incoming President visited with his Knockmore cousins when he travelled to Mayo as US Vice President in 2016.
    The formal US Presidential Inauguration ceremony today has been stripped of its usual pomp, due both to the Covid 19 pandemic, as well as security concerns following the 6 January assault on the US Capitol building  by supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump.
    Last night at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington Joe Biden led a Remembrance service for the 400,000 Americans who have died with the virus over the last 10 months.
    There will only be a small number of attendees present today when Joe Biden will take the oath of office before US Chief Justice John Roberts just after noon (5pm Irish time), placing his hand on an heirloom Bible that has been in the Biden family for more than a century.
    His running mate, Kamala Harris will become the first woman, first Black person and first Asian American to serve as vice president after she is sworn in by US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
    The support and delight for Joe Biden’s Presidency in Ireland extends well beyond Ballina and county Mayo. The lead organiser of the Irish for Biden Campaign, Paul Allen told Midwest News today that "it’s a great day for Ireland, as Joe Biden a friend of Ireland, takes the helm in the US".


  • The Sacred Heart School, Westport has been approved for funding under the Emergency Works Scheme.

    Local deputy Michael Ring says the school has been approved funding in respect of structural works. The funding will go towards the replacement of the gym floor in the sports / general purpose hall.

    He hopes the works will get underway shortly.


  • Fáilte Ireland has announced funding of over €20 million euro for Westport House Estate & Gardens.

    It's part of a €73 million euro investment in four major projects in Mayo, Cavan, Donegal and Dublin.

    The largest allocation - €20.2 million - goes to Westport House to ensure it's developed as a world-class visitor attraction.

    The total investment in Westport House will be over €36 million, and a key element will be the "Wild Realms" project, which will allow visitors to connect with nature, and enjoy the wild flora and native woodlands across the 300-acre estate.

    The 18th century Westport House and Gardens will also be restored.

    For over 300 years, the Browne family- who built the house - lived there before it was sold in 2017 to the Hughes family in Westport.  

    Westport-based FG Deputy Michael Ring has welcomed the substantial investment....

  • Coláiste Pobail Acla, Achill Soundhas been granted funds under the Emergency Works Scheme.

    Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring says funding has been approved for electrical works to the original school area.  This follows periodic inspection reports.

    The deputy says he is looking forward to the works being completed as quickly as possible for the Health & Safety of the pupils and teachers in this school.

  • “It’s good to have friends in high places, and Joe Biden is a friend to Mayo and Ireland", according to Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring.

    Deputy Ring says the Democrats have been good friends to this country in the past, and he hopes that with Joe Biden as US President, we have a welcome ally in our future dealings with the UK before and after Brexit.

    Michael Ring met Joe Biden in Westport during his Vice Presidential visit to county Mayo in 2016.

    Deputy Ring told  Midwest News this lunchtime that the county and the country needs friends anywhere in these turbulent, pandemic days.

  • This government and its Cabinet members need to stop giving mixed messages to the general public about the way forward in the present pandemic. That was the clear view expressed by former Minister, Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring at last night’s Fine Gael Parliamentary meeting.

    He said the general public are fed up with the failure of the present government to provide a clear message about the way forward out of this present Covid 19 Lockdown.

    The electorate, he argued are fed up. They have generally complied with the regulations and yet over the past two weeks, all they got from this government is conflicting messages on the way forward.

    The message, he claimed, is changing over any given 24 hour period depending on what Minister is speaking, and from which of the three coalition parties in government he/ she represents.

    Deputy Ring again completely condemned the 5km travel restriction in place at present. He says it’s simply not realistic in rural Ireland and needs to be lifted now.

    Michael Ring has been speaking to Midwest News Editor Teresa O’Malley today about why he expressed his anger with the government’s mixed messaging at last night’s parliamentary party meeting.




  • The government should not have made the decision it made yesterday, pausing the re-opening of indoor hospitality. That’s the clear view of Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring.

    The former Minister insists that if he was still a Minister he would not have agreed to the Cabinet decision yesterday morning, to halt the reopening of indoor dining and drinking, that was due to get underway again from Monday next.

    He says the Cabinet said it is acting on advice from Nphet about the potential spread of the Delta variant, but it has not shown members of the Oireachtas the evidence that supports the pausing of indoor hospitality.

    Deputy Ring is now calling on the Cabinet to reverse its decision yesterday and allow indoor hospitality to open on Monday next.

    Midwest News Editor Teresa O'Malley  asked deputy Ring how as a member of government and Fine Gael could he accept what Micheál Martin announced at lunchtime yesterday


  • Tourism and hospitality businesses in the West are welcoming Government confirmation that the 9% VAT rate is being extended until September 2022.

    This is one element of the National Economic Recovery Plan approved today by Cabinet, which sets out how Ireland is expected to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic over the coming months and years.

    The Pandemic Unemployment Payment will be cut by 50 euro in September, and again in November, before being scrapped by February 8th next year, while the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme has been extended to the end of this year.

    It also extends the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme until the end of this year and extends the Commercial Rates Waiver for another 3 months until the end of September.

    The aim of the plan is to have 2.5 million people across the country in work by 2024.   

    Meanwhile, houses built after 2013 are set to be brought under the local property tax under the changes approved by cabinet today.

    A review will take place in November to revalue all homes and end the practice where properties built after 2013 were not being charged property tax.

    Mayo FG Deputy Ring says today's plan is focused on helping people back into work, rebuilding sustainable enterprises and ensuring sustainable public finances.

  • Mayo FG Deputy Michael Ring has admitted that he's very disappointed not to have been appointed either a senior or junior Minister in the new Government.

    The Government has confirmed the full list of Ministers of State, with eight from Fianna Fail, seven Fine Gael and three Green Party TDs.

    With no Ministerial job for former Minister Michael Ring, the Westport-based TD says he's very disappointed, and is also angered at the fact that neither his own party or Fianna Fail appointed a senior Cabinet Minister in Connacht, Donegal or Clare.

    However, he has vowed to continue to be a strong voice for Mayo from the Fine Gael backbenches.

    Deputy Ring says he's proud of the fact that he got over 15,000 votes in the February general election and was elected on the first count- whereas his party Leo Varadker was elected on the 5th count.

    Deputy Ring says he is steeped in Fine Gael tradition and would not consider leaving the party, despite being disappointed at being dropped from Cabinet, but will continue to be a voice for Mayo and for rural Ireland in Dáil Eireann.

    Hear the full interview on our lunchtime news at 1pm...


  • Mayo deputy Michael Ring has today been informed by the National Transport Authority (NTA) that funding of €3,349,500 has been approved to Mayo County Council for the provision of sustainable transport projects in Mayo.

    The funding approved for Mayo projects is as follows:-


    Project Code:

    Project Name

    2021 Allocation


    Transport / Mobility Plans: Ballina, Castlebar



    Urban Mobility Plans / Network Plans: Including Westport, Belmullet, Bangor, Newport, Louisburgh, Charlestown, Claremorris, Swinford, Foxford, Kiltimagh, Ballyhaunis,



    Pedestrian crossings: Ballina, Westport, Crossmolina & Aughagower



    Footpaths Improvements Package A: Ballina Town & Killala Town Centre



    Footpaths Improvements Package B: Castlebar Turlough Road



    Footpaths Improvements Package C: Kilkelly, Carracastle, Cong, Foxford & Kiltimagh



    Footpaths Improvements Package D: Westport - The Mall, Carrowteigue Village, Newport & Louisburgh



    Castlebar Moneenbradagh cycling scheme



    Castlebar, Lannagh Cycle Track Link



    Westport Town signage and road markings for Walking and Cycleways



    Belmullet, Shore road/Convent Walk



    Swinford urban loop/linkage



    Claremorris new footpath and cyclelane on Chapel lane



    Safe to Schools Programme - Support Infrastructure: Castlebar



    Low Cost Permeability Measures: Castlebar and Westport



    Light Segregation Cycle Schemes: Claremorris and Castlebar







  • Funding of over €66,000 has been announced today for four archaeological heritage projects.

    Mayo FD Deputy Michael Ring says the grants are being allocated under the Community Monuments Scheme, which supports the conservation, maintenance and protection of local monuments and historic sites.

    Today's funding includes over €37,000 for Kill Abbey, with over €11,000 for Kilgeever Abbey, almost €10,000 for Kilmovee Heritage Trail, and over €6,800 for the Knockatemple Ecclesiastical Site.


  • A public consultation process has now opened into the River Deel drainage scheme in Crossmolina.

    Following devastating flooding in the town in 2015 and 2016, plans were developed for a bypass channel for the River Deel, and the OPW has recently submitted the scheme to the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform.

    Before the Minister can give formal confirmation for the scheme to proceed, an Environmental Impact Assessment Report requires a public consultation process, which has now opened.

    Mayo FG Deputy Michael Ring says people can make submissions until 11th January.

  • Three Mayo groups are to receive a total of 67,000 euro in Covid 19 Stability Funding

    Ballindine Community Centre Ltd.

    Services for Older Persons


    Mindspace Mayo

    Mental Health Services


    Claremorris Social & Family Centre Company Limited By Guarantee

    Social services and supports to disadvantaged individuals and communities



    Mayo Fine Gael deputy Michael Ring says the  funding is being awarded to qualifying organisations that provide critical services to those most vulnerable in society to help with short term cash flow issues being suffered due to the COVID crisis.