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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 1345-1354
 Header Item Commencement of Legislation
 Header Item Archaeological Sites
 Header Item National Parks and Wildlife Service
 Header Item Heritage Schemes
 Header Item Departmental Funding
 Header Item Architectural Heritage
 Header Item Seismic Surveys
 Header Item EU Data

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 970 No. 1

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Written Answers Nos. 1345-1354

Commencement of Legislation

 1345. Deputy Mattie McGrath Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan the sections and parts of all legislation brought forward by her Department in each of the past four years that have yet to be commenced; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25174/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan There are no sections or parts of legislation brought forward by my Department in the last four years that have yet to be commenced.

Archaeological Sites

 1346. Deputy Peadar Tóibín Information on Peadar Tóibín Zoom on Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if a community heritage and tourism facility will be put in place at Mayne in view of the High Court decision to cease the destruction of the Mayne Bog (details supplied). [25257/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan I refer the Deputy to my reply to Questions Nos. 660 and 661 on 28 March 2018 in which I set out my Department’s significant input and involvement in the safeguarding of the toghers, or ancient trackways, discovered at Mayne.

Over the years the Department has liaised with and provided archaeological advice and information to local heritage groups, the local authority and the landowner and has itself commissioned a series of archaeological surveys of the finds. The fundamental objective has been to protect and preserve the toghers and I am satisfied that the measures being taken represent the best approach to securing an optimal outcome in that regard.

The provision of visitor facilities by the State at archaeological monument sites is a function of the Office of Public Works (OPW) rather than of my own Department. Such facilities are put in place by OPW at the more significant locations that are in my ownership or guardianship, as Minister, under the National Monuments Acts. The Mayne togher site is not in state care and is privately owned. I am advised that the Glendalough and Ballycroy facilities instanced by the Deputy, which are managed by OPW and my Department's National Parks and Wildlife Service respectively, both involve substantial capital investments with significant ongoing running costs.

I fully appreciate the local and wider public interest there is in the Mayne toghers and it may be that the local authority, assisted perhaps by local groups, might be interested in helping with the presentation of the site. I am happy to confirm that my Department’s National Monuments Service will be available to assist and guide the Council in that regard if required.

National Parks and Wildlife Service

 1347. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if she will examine a matter (details supplied) on refugees who wish to volunteer; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25290/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan My Department regularly has volunteers assisting in the work of the National Parks and Wildlife side, and I have drawn the attention of local management in Killarney to this welcome offer.

Heritage Schemes

 1348. Deputy Thomas Byrne Information on Thomas Byrne Zoom on Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan the reason the heritage in schools scheme was recently closed for bookings. [25349/18]

 1349. Deputy Thomas Byrne Information on Thomas Byrne Zoom on Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if funding for the heritage in schools scheme was reduced in 2018; if so, the extent of the reduction; the reason for same; and the budget for the scheme following this reduction. [25350/18]

 1350. Deputy Thomas Byrne Information on Thomas Byrne Zoom on Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if costs relating to oversight of the heritage in schools scheme increased in 2018; and if so, the reason for same. [25351/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan I propose to take Questions Nos. 1348 to 1350, inclusive, together.

  The Heritage Council, which is funded by my Department, is independent in the performance of its functions.

  In 2018, I allocated funding of €6.377M to the Heritage Council. This is an increase of €123,000 on the 2017 allocation, which, in turn, had been increased by over €1 million on the 2016 allocation.

  The Heritage in Schools Programme is very popular and successful in raising awareness and appreciation of our national heritage.

  I am informed by the Heritage Council that the amount allocated for Heritage in Schools increased from €255,000 in 2016 to €300,000 in 2017. On the basis of information currently available, and depending on uptake of planned bookings in the course of the year, the Council expects to spend over €315,000 on the scheme in 2018. That's an increase of almost 24% in two years.

   It is a matter for the Heritage Council to decide how its funding is allocated across the range of research, education and conservation programmes it supports.

  I understand that Heritage in Schools is fully booked for this year. I also understand, however, that the Heritage Council is examining whether it can identify further funding to allow the Programme to expand and meet increased demand. The Heritage Council plans to develop the Programme further as part of its new Strategic Plan which will be published shortly.

  In relation to the costs of oversight of the programme, I am informed that there has been no increase in 2018 compared to 2017. Changes were made to the programme in 2017, arising from the recommendations of an independent review of the scheme commissioned by the Heritage Council and completed in August 2016. These included the appointment of a project manager.

More detailed information on this Programme and the Heritage Council’s other activities is available on its website www.heritagecouncil.ie   or by contacting the Council directly.

Departmental Funding

 1351. Deputy Jonathan O'Brien Information on Jonathan O'Brien Zoom on Jonathan O'Brien asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan her Department's capital allocation in each of the years 2019 to 2023; and the areas to which funds will be allocated in each of those years. [25567/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan The capital allocation for my Department in each of the years 2019 to 2022 is as follows:

- €75 million in 2019;

- €76 million in 2020;

- €80 million in 2021; and

- €110 million in 2022.

  Details of the specific capital allocation for 2023 are not currently available.

With regard to the break out of capital allocations for the years 2019 – 2023, this has not yet been finalised as investments over the period are subject to appraisal and evaluation in line with the Public Spending Code. The broad capital allocations for projects and programmes are set out in my Department’s 10 Year Plan, “Investing in our Culture, Language & Heritage 2018 – 2027”, at https://www.chg.gov.ie/app/uploads/2018/04/capital_plan_april3-8.pdf   which explicitly recognises that our culture, language and heritage are an essential part of the sustainable development of the country.

  More details on the individual projects and programmes will emerge as we go through the process of appraising, evaluating and planning for these important investments. The final disaggregation will be completed as part of the annual Estimates process for each of the years in question.

Architectural Heritage

 1352. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if a building that is deemed not to have significant architectural heritage value can be removed from the national inventory of architectural heritage list; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25617/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan The National Inventory of Architectural Heritage (NIAH) was established by the Architectural Heritage (National Inventory) and Historic Monuments (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1999. It is a national initiative administered by my Department.

The purpose of the NIAH is to identify, record, and evaluate the post-1700 architectural heritage of Ireland as an aid in its protection. NIAH surveys provide the basis for the recommendations made by me, under Section 53 of the Planning & Development Act 2000 (as amended), to the planning authorities for the inclusion of particular structures in their Record of Protected Structures (RPS).

Under the Architectural Heritage (National Inventory) and Historic Monuments (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1999 an entry in the NIAH may be amended or deleted. This can be done by the owner of the structure making a case to my Department. Each case is considered on its individual merits.

Seismic Surveys

 1353. Deputy Eamon Ryan Information on Eamon Ryan Zoom on Eamon Ryan asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if her Department will be making changes to National Parks and Wildlife Service guidelines for ocean seismic testing in view of new evidence published in 2017 and 2018 on the deadly impacts it can have on krill and zooplankton populations; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25696/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan My Department published guidelines in 2014 on the assessment of risk and mitigation measures in regard to high intensity noise in the marine environment and its impact on protected cetacean species. Neither krill nor zooplankton are protected under the Wildlife Acts or EU Nature Directives but are of course an important constituent of the food and food chain of protected cetaceans.

My Department is not the regulatory authority for ocean seismic activity. It takes on board new scientific information on impacts on protected species and can, when the evidence is fully scientifically reviewed, provide advice to the appropriate authorities.

EU Data

 1354. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan the EU fines paid in each of the years 2015 to 2017, in tabular form; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25729/18]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan I am advised that my Department has not been subject to any EU fines during the period specified by the Deputy.


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