At the first meeting between the Board of Údarás na Gaeltachta and the Minister for Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs, Pat Carey, T.D. in Na Forbacha today (23 July), the Údarás board members emphasised the importance of Údarás na Gaeltachta retaining its enterprise function when the organisation is restructured in the context of the 20 Year Strategy for the Irish Language.
The Board members also stressed that it was important for the Údarás to have the flexibility to spend its capital budget on the basis of the employment needs of the Gaeltacht as opposed to the current rigid constraints of the Department of Finance.
A strong case was made to the Minister for the mainstreaming of funding for third level education through Irish in the Gaeltacht.
The Minister told the Board that he recognised the important role of an tÚdarás in relation to the Irish language and enterprise, that he understood how important it was for the organisation to have an enterprise function into the future and that all these issues would be discussed and resolved when the 20 Year Strategy for the Irish language comes up for discussion by the Cabinet Committee at the end of September.
Minister Carey confirmed that talks were taking place at Departmental and Ministerial level regarding the funding of third level education through Irish in the Gaeltacht.