Christmas Bonus will be paid to Kerry social welfare & PUP recipients this year – Griffin Deputy Government Chief Whip, Brendan Griffin TD said: “I am pleased to say that the full Christmas Bonus will be paid to social welfare recipients in Kerry the week beginning 7th December. This year, due to the challenges of COVID-19, the Christmas bonus will also be paid to recipients of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment. “This was confirmed to me by my colleague the Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys, who has announced the details of the largest ever Christmas Bonus. “As always, people on long term social welfare benefits such as pensioners, people with disabilities, carers and lone parents will receive the 100% Christmas bonus. “Those who have been in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) continuously or otherwise – for at least 4 months (17 weeks) since March will also receive the Christmas Bonus this year. “Minister Humphreys has also taken care to ensure that anyone returning to work next week as restrictions ease, will not be excluded from the Christmas Bonus. Any person in receipt of PUP for any one day from Friday 27th November to Thursday 3rd December will still receive the Christmas Bonus provided they also meet the 17 week requirement. So anyone returning to work this Monday or Tuesday will still receive the Christmas Bonus as they worked at least one day during the said period. “The same criteria is also being applied to those on Jobseeker’s payments, who in previous years would have only received the Bonus if they had been out of work for at least 15 months”, Deputy Griffin concluded. Announcing the record Christmas Bonus, Minister Humphreys urged people to spend it locally in order to support small businesses: “Christmas brings many extra financial pressures and I am particularly pleased to provide a 100% Christmas Bonus this year for over 1.6 million people. “I would strongly encourage people to spend their Christmas Bonus locally this year and support our local shops and businesses in our towns and villages throughout the country. This will be a €390 million injection into the Irish economy at a time when many small businesses will be reopening their doors as restrictions are eased.” ENDS For further information please contact Brendan on 087-6528841 Notes for Editor A 100% Christmas Bonus will be paid in December 2020 to recipients of long-term Social Welfare payments (minimum payment of €20). People in receipt of the following payments will receive the Bonus: • State Pensions and Widow’s/Widower’s/Surviving Civil Partner’s Pensions • Invalidity Pension, Blind Pension, Disability Allowance, Carer’s Allowance, Carer’s Benefit, Partial Capacity Benefit, Disablement Benefit, Domiciliary Care Allowance and Guardian’s payments • One-Parent Family Payment, Long-term Jobseeker’s Allowance, Jobseeker’s Transition Payment, Deserted Wife’s Benefit and Allowance and Farm Assist • Back to Work Enterprise Allowance, Community Employment, Rural Social Scheme, TÚS, Gateway and Job Initiative, Supplementary Welfare Allowance, Daily Expenses Allowance, Magdalene Commission Scheme • On an exceptional basis this year, recipients of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment and equivalent recipients of Jobseeker’s Payments who have been on these payments for four months or more.
November 26, 2020
February 1, 2021 New investment by Fáilte Ireland will provide welcome boost for tourism business in Kerry – Griffin A new nationwide €55 million investment by Fáilte Ireland will provide a welcome boost for tourism businesses in Kerry, Deputy Government Chief Whip, Brendan Griffin TD has said. Deputy Griffin said the funding for the Tourism Business Continuity Scheme was secured in Budget 2021 and Fáilte Ireland is responsible for developing and administering the scheme. Deputy Griffin said: “The scheme will support those tourism businesses that were not eligible for the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) payment or previous Fáilte Ireland continuity grant schemes. “I am confident this will have a positive impact on the industry in Kerry and will be key to helping it survive and thrive in the year ahead. “The first phase of the Scheme opens for applications on the 11th February 2021 to businesses including outdoor activity providers, visitor attractions not eligible for CRSS, caravan and camping providers registered with Fáilte Ireland and Cruise Hire companies who meet the eligibility criteria. “The Government will continue to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy and ensure that appropriate supports are in place. We are now developing tourism for survival through the pandemic and recovery in the medium and long term.” The National Tourism Development Authority also announced its heavyweight domestic marketing plans, investment commitments in outdoor dining and urban animation and its strategic priorities for the year ahead. The event entitled ‘Survive to Thrive’, provided industry with details of Fáilte Ireland’s plans that will help support resilience and survival in the short term and the recovery of the sector in the long-term. Deputy Griffin said: “Amongst its key projects for 2021, Fáilte Ireland has also committed to the enhancement of urban areas through the 31 Destination Town projects across the country and two new funding schemes. “The Outdoor Dining Grant Scheme will improve the quality of outdoor dining spaces and offer reassurance around safety and comfort, and the Urban Animation Grant Scheme will animate our cities and towns with innovative lighting and art installations. “Fáilte Ireland has also committed to preparing for the return of tourism by working with industry to build improved websites and online booking capability through a new digital transformation programme and continuing to keep Ireland front of mind for overseas buyers through a range of virtual sales events, including Meitheal, one of Ireland’s largest travel trade shows.” ENDS Note for editor €55million Tourism Business Continuity Scheme • The first phase of the €55million Tourism Business Continuity Scheme opens for applications on the 11th February 2021 to businesses including outdoor activity providers (e.g. Bike tours, Surf Schools, Kayaking tours, Angling, tourist boat tour operators, Hop on Hop off Bus tours with onboard tourism experiences, walking tours, instructor led/guided tourism equestrian experiences and golf courses with a tourism offering), Visitor attractions not eligible for CRSS (e.g. attractions with charity/not for profit status or that are primarily outdoor attractions), Caravan and camping providers registered with Fáilte Ireland and Cruise Hire companies who meet the eligibility criteria. To be eligible for the scheme: • a business’ monthly turnover from October 2020 to January 2021 must be less than 25% of its average monthly turnover in 2019; • the business must have a minimum annual turnover of €50,000 and minimum fixed costs of 10% of turnover; • the business must not be eligible to apply for the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) or have received funding through the Fáilte Ireland Coach Tourism Business Continuity Scheme or Ireland Based Inbound Agents Business Continuity Scheme. The minimum grant is €3,750 and the maximum grant is €200k. Full details and eligibly criteria will be available on www.failteireland.ie from the 11th February 2021. Phase 2 of the scheme will be launched in March 2021. Destination Towns Scheme • In 2019, Fáilte Ireland launched the Destination Towns Scheme to boost the attractiveness and tourism appeal of towns nationwide. Over €15million was allocated to 31 towns and Fáilte Ireland continues to implement projects to improve public realm and visitor experience in these locations. For further information please contact Brendan on 087-2549116
February 1, 2021