The Transport Minister Shane Ross has awarded €5m to an airport that does not operate any commercial flights.
Waterford Regional Airport has not had a single passenger jet land or take off in the last three years.
According to the Irish Independent, the Department of Public Expenditure advised against the allocation, suggesting it is unjustified.
The Department of Transport was told that additional funding for the airport must come from within the existing transport budget.
John Halligan, who is Mr Ross’s Independent Alliance colleague and holds a Dáil seat in the constituency, said: “If people want to say it’s parish-pump politics, I don’t care. It’s a big hit for the south-east.”