National Library funding announcement due in coming week

Heather Humphreys says Government aware of challenges facing cultural institutions

Minister for Culture Heather Humphreys: to make “positive announcement. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Minister for Culture Heather Humphreys: to make “positive announcement. Photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

 
Heather Humphreys

Ms Humphreys said in the Dáil she was acutely aware of the challenges facing the library and other cultural institutions following the significant reduction in resources because of the economic crisis.

She was responding to Fianna Fáil culture spokesman Seán Ó Fearghaíl, who highlighted the RTÉ report of a letter the library’s outgoing board wrote to the Minister in July saying it needed €500,000 more to operate effectively.

Mr Ó Fearghaíl suggested to the Minister she should make her announcement in the Dáil, rather than wait for the weekend.

In the letter the board expressed deep concern about the library’s “inability to fulfil its statutory function of protecting and preserving the nation’s documentary heritage”.

Mr Ó Fearghaíl said the board was concerned about the unsuitability of the storage space, fire safety, staffing and funding for acquisitions.