No fare for Offaly under new rural taxi scheme

Funding has been made available to drivers

Justin Kelly

Reporter:

Justin Kelly

Email:

news@offalyexpress.ie

No fare for Offaly under new rural taxi scheme

No fare for Offaly under new rural taxi scheme

Offaly has not been included in a new pilot taxi service aimed at connecting rural areas across the country.

The National Transport Authority (NTA) is making funding available for the provision of localised hackney services in each of 15 Local Link areas nationwide.

Under a pilot scheme, the NTA is offering grant funding of €6,000 to individual drivers over twelve months to operate a localised hackney service in each of the areas.

The areas included in the pilot programme were selected by the NTA in conjunction with Local Link offices, as ones where a full-time taxi or hackney service may not be currently sustainable. Applications for the funding are now being accepted by the NTA.

Plans for this pilot programme were first announced in May of this year by Minister for Transport Tourism and Sport Shane Ross and the Minister of State with responsibility for Sport and Tourism, Brendan Griffin, along with the NTA.

The announcement was made in response to the low take-up of the Local Area Hackney Scheme which was first introduced in December 2013. The pilot programme announced this week seeks to simplify the application process and make the provision of a service in rural areas sustainable.

The outcome of this pilot programme will help inform the NTA’s local transport plans over the next five years.

The 15 designated areas for the pilot programme are:

Cork, Adrigole area
Donegal, Lettermacaward
Galway, Dunmore
Kerry, Glencar
Kildare, Kilberry area
Kilkenny, Windgap
Laois, Shanahoe area
Limerick, Martinstown/Ballinvrena area
Longford, Cullyfad
Mayo, Louisburgh area
Meath, Cormeen area
Monaghan, Newbliss
Tipperary, Annacarty
Waterford, Knockanore
Wexford, Ballyfad

Wendy Thompson, Head of Taxi Regulation at the NTA said: “If you are interested in providing this vital local service to your community and if you have a vehicle that meets the basic requirements, we would like to hear from you. You don’t even have to be a current holder of a Small Public Service Vehicle driver licence to apply."

Further information and application forms are available at www.DLAH.ie. Alternatively, you can call the SPSV Information Line on 0761 064 000 or go to your nearest Local Link office.