Funding of up to €200,000 is available for rural towns and villages across Laois through the 2019 .
This is according to Laois/Offaly TD and Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan.
The scheme is specifically targeted at rural towns and villages with populations of less than 10,000.
The minimum grant which is available is €20,000 and the maximum is €100,000.
A higher maximum of €200,000 will be considered for a limited number of projects where a strong case can be made demonstrating exceptionally strong benefit to a town and/or its outlying areas.
In order to avail of funding through the scheme, Laois County Council will be required to advertise for expressions of interest from towns and villages and will select proposals for development into detailed applications to be submitted to the Department by the end of June.
Two categories of Town/Villages are eligible for support under the scheme.
Category one is for towns/villages with a population of less than 5,000 people. At least of 60 of the funding available will be awarded to category one towns and villages.
Category two is for towns with a population of 5,000-10,000 people.
Successful proposals will demonstrate close collaboration between communities and business interests in the design and delivery of proposed projects, and must have the support of the Local Authority.
Minister Flanagan said: “To ensure the vitality of our rural areas, a significant proportion of national population and economic growth will be targeted at building up the fabric of smaller towns, villages and rural areas.
“Since the Town and Village Renewal Scheme was introduced in 2016, almost €53 million has been approved for over 670 projects across the country.
“I strongly encourage towns and villages in County Laois to work with Laois County Council in preparing innovative and well thought-out projects under the scheme and I look forward to the announcement of the successful recipients of funding in the coming months.”
Full details of the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, along with the Application Form, are available on the Department of Rural and Community Development website here.