RTÉ’s current affairs programme, Prime Time, has conducted an investigation into a funding issue relating to the Mary Robinson Centre in Ballina. The programme makers have informed Mayo County Council that it intends to broadcast its report this evening, (Thursday), at 9.35 pm, during which its findings will be revealed.

It’s understood that the programme will highlight a sum of €800,000 outstanding to Mayo County Council from the Victoria House Foundation, in respect of the project. The matter was raised in the Local Government Auditor's Report, which came before the December meeting of Mayo County Council.

Westport based Fine Gael councillor Peter Flynn had sought a meeting with the Local Government Auditors in 2022 about an outstanding debt to the local authority from the Victoria House Foundation.

The accounts for the Foundation to the end of 2022, show it has just under 4,000 euro in its bank account but owes just over 6,000 euro to creditors, with no assets.

The auditor's report set out how Mayo County Council is engaged in a project to transform Victoria House in Ballina, into the Mary Robinson Centre, at a cost of €5.4 million, excluding fit-out costs.

Committed income sources to date include funding from the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht for €2 million, of which €1.74 million has been received towards the construction phase, and €1.1 million from the Mary Robinson Foundation/Community Group, of which €300,000 has been received by the council to date.

The remaining €250,000 for the department grant is allocated towards the fit-out and the council is currently preparing a proposal for a fit-out on a phased basis.

Councillor Flynn told Midwest News Editor Teresa O’Malley that if Mayo County Council in left to subsidise the 800,00 euro outstanding, than it will have a direct impact on funding for other projects across the county…


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