Local Community Development Committee (LCDC)

DRCD Community Enhancement Programme 2018

The Community Enhancement Programme (CEP), which is funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development, will provide €284,032 of capital grant funding to community groups in County Laois in 2018, to enhance facilities available to communities.

Typical enhancements under the programme include the upgrading of community centres, community amenities, improvements to town parks, common areas and spaces, CCTV equipment, defibrillators, IT equipment and energy efficiency-type projects.

A total of 92 community groups in County Laois will receive funding under this scheme, with a good spread of funding across the county.

The CEP is the result of the first significant exercise in the streamlining of schemes and programmes carried out by the Department of Rural and Community Development and it is envisaged that further schemes of this type will be rolled out in 2019.

The application process for the CEP is administered by Laois Local Community Development Committee (LCDC).

In addition €10,145 was also provided to support the work of Men’s Sheds through the Community Enhancement Programme.  7 Men’s Shed groups in Laois will receive Funding under the programme.

Please find the full list of successful applicants here: Community Enhancement Programme Grants 2018



  • The Local Government Reform Act 2014, provides for the establishment of Local Community Development Committees (LCDC) in the 31 local authority areas.
  • This is one of the main alignment reforms of local government.
  • LCDC’s replace County Development Boards, and while retaining the collaborative nature of CDBs, have an enhanced role and different structure.


  • LCDCs key function is to achieve a more strategic, joined up approach to local and community development.
  • LCDCs will have oversight and responsibility for local development and community related funding in their county.
  • The LCDC is responsible for the rollout and monitoring of delivery of social inclusion programme Social Inclusion Community Activation Programme 2018—2022 (SICAP).
  • The LCDC will also be responsible Rural Development Programme and is currently preparation a Draft Local Development Strategy for the county.
  • Each LCDC will develop a six year Economic and Community Plan (LECP).   This plan will agree the strategic framework for economic and community development for the county.  It will inform community and local development resource allocation, and inform other planning processes.
  • The community element of the plan will be prepared by the LCDC, with the economic element prepared by the SPC for Economic Development and Enterprise Support.
  • There is a requirement that both elements are prepared concurrently and form the basis for one overall LECP.  This plan will be presented for approval by Council in early 2015.


  • LCDCs are based on membership from statutory and non-statutory bodies (who hold the majority of seats).  Administrative and secretariat support is provided by the local authority.

County Laois LCDC is based on a seventeen member committee.  The first meeting was held on Wednesday, 17 September 2014.


Statutory Interests

  • Cllr John King, Laois County Council
  • Cllr Paschal McEvoy, Laois County Council
  • Cllr , Laois County Council
  • Mr John Mulholland, Chief Executive, Laois County Council
  • Ms Evelyn Reddin, CEO, Laois Local Enterprise Office
  • Mr Colm Purcell, Dept of Social Protection
  • Ms , Health Services Executive
  • Mr Tony Dalton, Laois/Offaly Education & Training Board


Non Statutory Interests

  • Ms Anne Goodwin, CEO, Laois Partnership Company
  • Mr Michael Bergin, Farming Pillar
  • Mr Joe Thompson, Youth Work Ireland Laois
  • Mr Kieran Finane, Business Sector
  • Mr Dave Fingleton, Laois Public Participation Network (Environment Pillar)
  • Mr Paddy Buggy, Laois Public Participation Network (Social Inclusion Pillar)
  • Ms Mary White, Laois Public Participation Network (Social Inclusion Pillar)
  • Mr PJ Campbell, Laois Public Participation Network (Community/Voluntary Pillar)
  • Mr Robbie Quinn, Laois Public Participation Network (Community/Voluntary Pillar)


A/Chief Officer, Laois LCDC – Ms Georgina Ireland, A/Senior Executive Officer, Laois County Council

Tel No:  057 86 64000

Laois LCDC Minutes of Meetings





Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP)

The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) 2018-2022 is a national programme funded by the Department of Environment, Community & Local Government and co-funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) and includes a special allocation under the Youth Employment Initiative.

This programme commenced on 1st January 2018 and will run until 31st December 2022. It is the successor programme to the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) 2015-2017.

SICAP is a community development programme which aims to tackle poverty, social exclusion and long-term employment through local engagement and partnership between disadvantaged individuals, community organisations and public sector agencies.

This is done using community development approaches, targeted supports and interagency collaboration, where the values of equality and inclusion are promoted and human rights are respected.

The SICAP programmes provide supports to the following people:

  • The Unemployed
  • The Roma Community
  • One Parent Families
  • People with a disability
  • Those living in communities which are less well off than others
  • Those on a low income
  • Migrant; refugees or asylum seekers and
  • Young people looking for a job or training

Programmes provided under SICAP include:


To improve the life chances and opportunities of those who are marginalised in society, living in poverty or in unemployment through community development approaches, targeted supports.

In Laois, the Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) monitors the roll out of SICAP on behalf of DECLG and POBAL, which monitors funding of the programme.

Programme Implementer in Laois is Laois Partnership Company who can be contacted as follows:

Laois Partnership Company, Head Office, County Hall (Áras an Chontae), Portlaoise, Co Laois

Tel: 057 8661900    Fax: 057 8678043

Email: info@laoispartnership.ie

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Rural Development Programme (LEADER)

The LEADER programme was launched in 1991 and has provided rural communities, across the EU, with the resources to enable local partners to actively engage and direct the local development of their area.

The current LEADER Programme 2014 – 2020 will provide €250 million (7% of the RDP) in funding to rural communities over the next 5 – 6 years throughout Ireland. During this period, almost €8m of LEADER funding will be invested in innovative community and private enterprise projects throughout Laois.

Laois Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) has responsibility for the delivery of LEADER 2014-2020 in the county.  The key Implementation Partner (IP) is Laois Partnership Company (LPC).

Decisions on LEADER funding are made at a local level by a Local Action Group (LAG) which is made up of people from the local community as well as from the local public and private sector

It is responsible for selecting and approving projects in accordance with the Local Development Strategies (LDS) developed for the area.

The LDS is a plan that is developed by rural communities to support sustainable development of their sub-regional area.


LEADER 2014-2020 

The Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs is the programme manager for LEADER. Pobal supports the Department in elements of the programme including managing the LDS selection process, financial verification checks and the roll out of the ICT system.

The LEADER programme is included under priority 6 of the Rural Development Programme 2014-2020 (RDP): “promoting social inclusion, poverty reduction and economic development in rural areas.”

To facilitate a more effective targeting of resources, the requirements of the RDP were identified through consultation and research.  The RDP outlines a series of themes that were identified as overarching needs in rural Ireland.

LEADER has three RDP and nine sub-themes:

Theme 1:   Economic Development, Enterprise Development and Job Creation.

Sub-themes: Rural Tourism, Enterprise Development, Rural Town and Broadband.

Theme 2:   Social Inclusion

Sub-themes: Basic services targeted at hard to reach communities and Rural Youth.

Theme 3: Rural Environment

Sub-themes: Protection and sustainable use of water resources, Protection and improvement of local bio-diversity and Development of renewable energy.


How To Apply for LEADER Funding

For further information on LEADER funding in Laois, including how to apply, please contact the Implementing Partner (IP) ie Laois Partnership Company (LPC) at:

Laois Partnership Company, Head Office, County Hall (Áras an Chontae), Portlaoise, Co.Laois

Tel: 057 8661900 Fax: 057 8678043

Email: info@laoispartnership.ie

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Local Economic & Community Plan

The Laois Local Economic and Community Plan (LECP) is a statutory Plan which was prepared to promote the economic and community development of County Laois from 2016-2021.

The LECP was prepared by Laois County Council and the Laois Local Community Development Committee (Laois LCDC) in consultation with other agencies, organisations and groups.

The plan was adopted by the Laois Local Community Development Committee (Laois LCDC) and Laois County Council in March 2016 and was formally launched at the National Ploughing Championships in Tullamore in September 2016.

The LECP provides a guide to the development of Laois up to 2021 and one of its main objectives is to ensure the effective co-ordination of publicly funded programmes such as SICAP – Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme and LEADER Rural Development Programmes.

Laois LCDC is responsible for implementing the community elements of the plan and the Strategic Policy Committee, or SPC, for Economic Development, Enterprise and Planning is responsible for implementing the economic element of the plan.

Both elements were developed in tandem and combined in the final LECP.

The plan comprises of 2 principal parts:

Part 1 – Laois Socio-Economic Statement

This statement includes some background information about the preparation of the LECP. It comprises a profile of County Laois including some key facts, trends, strengths and opportunities relevant to economic and community development. It also sets out 10 High-Level Goals and a context for each Goal.

Part 2 – Detailed Objectives and Actions

This section comprises specific, measurable and time-bound objectives and actions to promote economic and community development. The organisation or group responsible for delivering each action is specified, the committee responsible for overseeing the delivery of each action is also specified. Many actions are collaborative in nature involving a number of partners in these instances the lead agency is identified.

Adopted LECP Plan

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