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Donohoe, Paschal

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.

Budget Statement 2018

Budget day offers the opportunity to reflect on a journey made, to recognise both what our country has achieved and what we want to achieve. On this budget day, we build on progress that would hav...More Button

Budget Statement 2018 (Continued)

It means we will be doing the right thing at this point in our economic cycle, the right thing for those who want sustained investment in our public services and the right thing by those who will b...More Button

When combined with the local authority matching contribution, this fund has the potential to provide approximately 5,000 more homes at more affordable levels by 2021.

Addressing the Fin...More Button

Some €90 million is being allocated to roll out a new access plan which will ensure that patients can avail of the medical care they need in the most appropriate setting for them. This will partic...More Button

The budget will also provide for a reduction in prescription charges for all medical card holders aged under 70 from €2.50 per item to €2 per item with a consequent reduction in the monthly cap f...More Button

Some €40 million is being provided for primary care developments, which will allow a number of initiatives to go ahead. In particular, the Government looks forward to further progress in relation ...More Button

Accordingly, I am introducing a tax at a rate of 30 cent per litre on drinks with over 8 g of sugar per 100 ml and a reduced rate of 20 cent per litre on drinks with between 5 and 8 g of sugar per ...More Button

This means that over 1,000 additional special needs assistants, SNAs, can be recruited in time for September 2018, bringing the total number of SNAs to over 15,000.More Button

The quality of the Irish education system, our students, research and graduates has been a cornerstone of our economic success. It attracts investment, nurtures local business and fosters innovati...More Button

Another 500 civilians will also be hired. The additional allocation for the justice sector in 2018 is €63 million. The rationale for this investment is to continue to invest and develop a modern ...More Button

Encouraging Participation in Sport and Culture

Investments in our cultural and sporting life are vital to supporting the vibrancy of our country. As part of the total package to th...More Button

-----in households and business.

Ireland at the Centre of the World

I share the Taoiseach’s view that Ireland is not a country at the edge of Europe, but at the centre of t...More Button

We are conscious in particular that everyone should have the opportunity to share in the benefits of an economy emerging from recession. Last year we were in a position to increase all weekly soci...More Button

I am also pleased to announce that a Christmas bonus payment of 85% will again be paid to all social welfare recipients in 2017.More Button

I am conscious of the need to facilitate working families and ensure that being at work pays. Accordingly, from the last week in March I am increasing the earnings disregard for the one parent f...More Button

There will also be improvements in other areas including an additional 250 places for the rural social scheme and an increase in the free travel scheme and the fuel allowance. In addition we are...More Button

Separately, and in recognition of the work undertaken by our charities, I propose to introduce a scheme to compensate them for the VAT they incur on their inputs.More Button

Thanks, Mattie. The scheme will be introduced in 2019 in respect of VAT expenses incurred in 2018. Charities will be entitled to a proportion of VAT based on the level of non-public funding they ...More Button

Our position is clear. The 12.5% tax rate is, and will remain, a core part of our offering.More Button

I also recognise the value of stability. With so much change ahead, Ireland must compete, not only on the rate, but on the ability to offer certainty. Last month I published the Seamus Coffey rep...More Button

Later this year, as has already been announced, the Government will publish the national investment plan and the national planning framework. These initiatives, which will work together, will outl...More Button

-----seeks to renew opportunity in our Republic and create new opportunities for our Republic. The budget achieves sustainable and affordable tax reform, delivers improvements in services and ensu...More Button

Insurance Coverage

Was asked: the steps he will take to ensure proper and effective regulation of insurance companies on the issue of refusing flood cover; if it will be ensured that cover cannot be refused after adequate flood...More Button

I am conscious of the difficulties that the absence or withdrawal of flood insurance cover can cause to homeowners and businesses, and that is one of the reasons the Government has been prioritisin...More Button

However, the provision of insurance cover and the price at which it is offered is a commercial matter for insurance companies and is based on an assessment of the risks they are willing to accept...More Button

Government policy in relation to flooding is focused on the development of a sustainable, planned and risk-based approach to dealing with flooding problems.  This in turn should lead to the incre...More Button

- prioritising spending on flood relief measures by the Office of Public Works, OPW, and relevant local authorities;More Button

- development of plans by the OPW to implement flood relief schemes; and More Button

- improving channels of communication between the OPW and the insurance industry in order to reach a better understanding about the provision of flood cover in marginal areas.   More Button

Insurance Ireland has informed me that its members, since 1 June 2014, have factored data on all completed flood defence schemes, provided by the OPW, into their assessment of flood risk within t...More Button

While it is not possible for me to comment on individual cases without the full facts, I am advised by the OPW that Bath Avenue Gardens, Dublin 4 is within the benefiting area of the River Dodder...More Button

I note however, that the River Dodder Tidal Scheme contains three demountable defences. The most recent Insurance Ireland survey (December 2016) of approximately 85% of the property insurance ma...More Button

Finally, the Deputy should be aware that a consumer can make a complaint to the Financial Services Ombudsman in relation to any dealings with a Financial Services or Insurance provider during whi...More Button

Tribunals of Inquiry Expenditure

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 122 of 20 September 2017, the parties that received reimbursement under the section reimbursements to the State Claims Agency in respect of third-party claims,...More Button

The State Claims Agency have advised me that it is not possible, at the present time, to divulge the full details of the seven third-party costs settlements comprising the sum of €5,493,524.00, on ...More Button

However, when all Moriarty Tribunal third-party costs have been agreed, it may be possible, at that time, to furnish the details the Deputy has requested..More Button

Property Tax Assessments

Was asked: if consideration will be given to basing property tax on income for pensioners similar to the French system; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The 2012 report of the Interdepartmental Group on the Design of a Local Property Tax (the "Thornhill Group") comprehensively examined the basis of assessment for the Local Property Tax , LPT. The ...More Button

At the request of the Minister for Finance, the operation of the LPT was reviewed in 2015 by Dr. Thornhill. A number of submissions to the review favoured changing the basis of determination of ...More Button

The Finance (Local Property Tax) Act 2012, as amended, provides for a system of deferral and partial deferral arrangements in certain circumstances to assist individuals who may have difficulty p...More Button

Where a liable person does not qualify for, or does not wish to avail of, a deferral, phased payment of LPT can be used to assist with budgeting. The Government is aware of the difficulties faci...More Button

Property owners who wish to avail of the deferral option or require clarification in regard to their particular circumstances should contact the LPT Helpline at 1890 200 255 to make the necessary...More Button

NAMA Reports

Was asked: if he will publish the seven yearly reports regarding NAMA's use of post acquisition powers submitted to the European Commission and Irish competition authorities in each of the years 2010 to 2016;...More Button

I wish to advise the Deputy that as outlined in my response to Dáil Question No. 80 of 26 September, 2017, a stipulation of the European Commission's decision, of 26 February 2010, on the, "Establi...More Button

As was outlined in my response to this question, a total of seven reports have been prepared and submitted to the European Commission and the Irish Competition Authorities for the years 2010-2016...More Button

State Claims Agency

Was asked: the avenue of appeal open to persons that have applied to the State Claims Agency and have had their claim turned down; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The NTMA is designated as the State Claims Agency, SCA, when managing claims against the State and State Authorities and carrying out related risk management functions in order to reduce the costs ...More Button

The SCA’s remit covers personal injuries and third-party property damage claims made against approximately 146 State Authorities including the State itself. It also manages third-party costs ari...More Button

The SCA’s claims management objective is, while acting in the best interests of tax payers in matters of personal injury and property damage litigation, to act fairly and ethically in its dealing...More Button

Where the State Claims Agency successfully defends a claim following a Court Trial, it is open to the unsuccessful plaintiff to Appeal that Court’s decision to a higher Court and, in appropriate ...More Button

Help-To-Buy Scheme Eligibility

Was asked: if a person that purchases a new build with a local authority mortgage is eligible for the help-to-buy scheme if that new build matches all the criteria for the help-to-buy scheme; and if he will m...More Button

In order to be successful, claims under the help-to-buy incentive must satisfy a range of criteria, including that the qualifying loan is secured by the mortgage of a freehold or leasehold estate o...More Button

Nursing Homes Support Scheme

Was asked: the funding received from the nursing home support scheme in each of the years 2011 to 2016 and to date in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Revenue’s role in the Nursing Home Support scheme is confined to that of collection agent for the Health Service Executive, HSE, in respect of loan funding provided under the Ancillary State Suppor...More Button

NAMA Operations

Was asked: the persons or organisations that are the 51% owners of the NAMA group; the shareholding of each of these persons and organisations; the amount of dividend paid to each in each year to date since N...More Button

I wish to advise the Deputy that in its decision issued in July 2009, Eurostat (the statistical office of the European Union) ruled that special purpose vehicles, SPVs, which were majority owned by...More Button

Public Services Card

Was asked: the agencies within his remit that plan to make services or payments dependent on the public services card; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I am advised that of the 18 bodies under the aegis of my Department, 17 have no plans to make services or payments dependent on the public services card.More Button

In line with Government policy to develop a single authentication mechanism for customers to access public services and to get their due entitlements, the Office of the Revenue Commissioners is i...More Button

Help-To-Buy Scheme

Was asked: if studies have been carried out to investigate the impact of the help-to-buy scheme on house prices; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

An independent assessment of the help-to-buy initiative with the following terms of reference was commissioned by my predecessor earlier this year:

  - Undertake a general evalua...More Button

Primary Medical Certificates Provision

Was asked: if a primary medical certificate will issue in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The provision of a primary medical certificate is based on a professional clinical determination by the Senior Medical Officer for the relevant local Health Service Executive. To qualify for a pri...More Button

Mortgage Schemes

Was asked: his plans to reintroduce the key worker mortgage scheme as part of Budget 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

It appears that the Deputy’s question may refer to a UK initiative, the, "Key Worker Living Programme”, for public sector workers, as a, "key worker mortgage scheme", has never exist...More Button

Approved Housing Bodies

Was asked: if long-term leasing or other similar agreements to pay rent by local authorities to approved housing bodies is included as a liability or as a debt on the Government balance sheet; the rules surro...More Button

The Social Housing Current Expenditure Programme provides a means whereby properties can be built or bought by Approved Housing Bodies, AHBs, with the combined use of State and private funding, and...More Button

Rental payments from Local Authorities to AHBs are classified as government expenditure in accordance with the European System of Accounts (ESA 2010). .More Button

Employment Investment Incentive Scheme

Was asked: the timeframe for small business to be approved by the Revenue Commissioners for the EII scheme; if he will address the delay for a company (details supplied) in County Longford; and if he will mak...More Button

The Employment and Investment Incentive, EII, scheme, found in Part 16 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997, is a tax incentive whereby individuals who invest in certain qualifying companies obtain ...More Button

The entitlement to relief under the scheme is determined after the SME has issued shares to a qualifying investor. However, I am advised by Revenue that as an administrative measure, they provid...More Button

The company referred to by the Deputy applied for outline approval on 18 August. That application is awaiting attention and will be dealt with in due course.  Revenue has informed me that all corr...More Button

I am advised by Revenue that they are experiencing some backlog in processing requests for approval under this scheme and that there has been an increase in the volume of correspondence on the sc...More Button

Revenue has put in place procedures to reduce the backlog, and it is anticipated that the application by the company referred to will be processed within the next six weeks. In addition, a revie...More Button

VAT Rate Application

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 94 of 22 February 2017, the status of his consultations with other Member States in advance of the publication of the proposal regarding the reform of VAT rate...More Button

The European Commission is due to publish a proposal on the reform of VAT rates in November 2017, after which technical and political discussions on the proposal will commence at EU Council among a...More Button

Earlier in the year preliminary details of the proposed changes were discussed as part of the EU Commission's Group on the Future of VAT - a forum for consulting VAT experts from Member States on...More Button

Was asked: his plans to retain the 9% VAT rate for businesses involved in tourism; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, it is a longstanding practice of the Minister for Finance not to comment, in advance of the Budget, on any tax matters that might be the subject of Budget decisions.More Button

Budget 2018

Was asked: the regulatory impact assessment he has carried out prior to tax changes he plans announcing in Budget 2018. More Button

The Deputy will be aware that Budget tax changes are generally implemented by means of the Finance Bill. The Regulatory Impact Assessment, RIA, Guidelines advise that it is not compulsory to apply...More Button

State Aid Investigations

Was asked: the reason the State has not collected the billions of euro due to it under a ruling (details supplied); his plans to do so; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if the EU is, or is threatening to, take Ireland to court to force it to collect billions of euro owed to the State under a ruling (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the cost to date of advice received by his Department regarding the establishment of an escrow account in which to hold the billions of euro owed to the State as a result of a ruling (details suppl...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 37 to 39, inclusive, together.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, on 4 ctober 2017, the European Commission announced its intention to refer Ireland to the European Court of Justice in respect of the recovery of the alleged State Ai...More Button

While the Government has never accepted the Commission’s analysis in the Apple State Aid decision, we have always been clear that we are fully committed to ensuring that recovery of the alleged A...More Button

Officials and experts from across the State have been engaged in intensive work to ensure that Ireland complies with all its recovery obligations as soon as possible. Significant progress has be...More Button

With regard to the cost of advice in relation to the recovery process, over €1 million (including VAT) has been spent by the State (including the Department of Finance, the Revenue Commissioners,...More Button

Ministerial Functions

Was asked: the powers he has delegated to the Ministers of State in his Department; the date on which such delegation was made; if there were changes in powers delegated relative to the situation in place pri...More Button

As I indicated in my response to Parliamentary Question No. 84 of 27 September 2017, there are two Ministers of State appointed to the Department of Finance: 

  - Deputy Michael ...More Button

Was asked: the powers he has delegated to the Ministers of State in his Department; the date on which such delegation was made; if there were changes in powers delegated relative to the situation in place pri...More Button

There are three Ministers of State appointed to the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform:

  - Deputy Patrick O’Donovan is Minister of State at the Department of Finance a...More Button

EU Treaties

Was asked: his views on the proposal to enshrine the fiscal compact, now an inter-government treaty, into the EU Treaty; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Following a referendum on 31 May 2012, Ireland deposited its instruments of ratification of the Treaty on Stability, Coordination and Governance in Economic and Monetary Union done at Brussels, 2 M...More Button

At present, the European Commission has not brought forward any legislative proposal to enshrine the fiscal compact into an EU Treaty..More Button

NAMA Portfolio

Was asked: the housing and commercial properties in the possession of NAMA in County Tipperary; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Deputy will be aware that NAMA does not, in general, own property.  Rather, NAMA acquired loans for which the properties act as security. More Button

Under Sections 99 and 202 of the NAMA Act, NAMA is prohibited from disclosing confidential debtor information, including information on the location and type of assets owned by debtors. It is th...More Button

I am advised by NAMA that its debtors and receivers control only a small number of properties in County Tipperary; as at 31 December 2016, just 0.05% (€586k) of the remaining NAMA-secured propert...More Button

Public Sector Pensions

Was asked: if calculations have been carried out on the tax forgone by not taxing accruing public sector pensions; the reason for not including such estimates in a future tax expenditure review in view of the...More Button

With some minor exceptions, public sector pensions are paid from current expenditure and specific funds are not maintained. There is no capacity therefore to tax or to derive estimates of notional...More Button

Vehicle Registration

Was asked: if the VRT grant for fully hybrid vehicles of €1,500 will be extended to 2020; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

It is the long-standing practice of Ministers for Finance not to comment on what may be contained in upcoming budgets.More Button

Rent Controls

Was asked: if a company (details supplied) can avail of the rent a room relief; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The rent-a-room relief was introduced with the aim of increasing the availability of rented residential accommodation. The room or rooms must be used for the purposes of residential accommodation,...More Button

Under the scheme, sums arising to an individual in respect of the letting, for residential purposes, of a room or rooms in his or her home, including, for example, sums arising from lettings to s...More Button

Income from the provision of accommodation to occasional visitors for short periods, including, for example, where the accommodation is provided through online accommodation booking sites, does n...More Button

I am not favourably disposed to the extension of rent-a-room relief to income earned from the provision of accommodation through platforms such as the company in question, I am mindful such an ex...More Button

Financial Services Ombudsman Remit

Was asked: if, in relation to the complaints process of the Financial Services Ombudsman and in general when a person is making a complaint to a financial service provider, he will ensure that a legal persona...More Button

Firstly, I must point out that the Financial Services Ombudsman is independent in the performance of his statutory functions, and it would not be appropriate for me to comment on how he performs th...More Button

The Financial Services Ombudsman deals independently with complaints from consumers about their dealings with financial service providers. Any private individual or any business, club, charity, ...More Button

On the issue more generally, the Central Bank has informed me that Chapter 10 of the Central Bank’s Consumer Protection Code 2012 (‘the Code’) sets out how regulated firms must handle complaints ...More Button

Tax Code

Was asked: the reason a person (details supplied) living in Portugal cannot avail of the NHR status enabling those who become tax resident in Portugal the opportunity to receive qualifying income tax-free, bo...More Button

I am advised by Revenue that it is not its practice to comment on the application of the provisions of the national law of other countries. I am also advised that if the Deputy supplies identifyin...More Button

Was asked: the steps his Department and the Revenue Commissioners have taken in order to be prepared for the introduction of a sugar tax in 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Following the announcement in Budget 2017 of the introduction of a tax on sugar-sweetened drinks in April 2018, a public consultation was opened until 3 January this year.  The consultation invited...More Button

To further assist with the development of the tax, an implementation team composed of officials from Revenue and my Department was established together with a steering committee with representati...More Button

Extensive stakeholder engagement took place throughout the process to take into account industry views on the design of the tax. This included site visits to manufacturing plants, face-to-face m...More Button

Engagement with the European Commission was established to ensure compatibility of the tax, when implemented, with EU State aid law.  Similarly, discussions have taken place on a variety of polic...More Button

As well as being engaged with the above, Revenue has carried out the following preparatory steps for the introduction of a Sugar Sweetened Drink, SSD, tax:More Button

- Engagement with the State Laboratory and Food Safety Authority of Ireland on product classification and labelling issues relating to the identification of products liable to the proposed tax;More Button

- Development of draft legislative provisions that would be required to support the proposed tax; More Button

- Development of proposals on Revenue IT infrastructure, payments processing and other tax administration, accounting and collection issues relating to the proposed tax. .More Button

EU Issues

Was asked: the action he is taking at EU level to promote the need for persons living in one EU Member State to be allowed to purchase financial services products such as home loans and business loans from fi...More Button

The EU treaties provide for the free movement of capital and services between EU Member States.  As part of this EU common market for financial services, the “passporting” provisions in the Capital...More Button

However, despite these free movement provisions, differences remain between the credit and financial markets of Member States, and the EU has taken some further steps to more positively promote a...More Button

Also, in 2015 the European Commission launched its Capital Markets Union Action Plan that set out a programme of 33 measures, focused on six objectives, which aim to establish the building blocks...More Button

However, the level and scope for the further integration of credit and financial markets is being kept under review.  Specifically in relation to mortgages, the Mortgage Credit Directive requires...More Button

VAT Rate Reductions

Was asked: his plans to introduce a VAT reduction on animal vaccines in order to help support better animal welfare on farms; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: his plans to reduce the rate of VAT on animal vaccines; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 50 and 55 together.

  As the Deputy will be aware, it is a long-standing practice of the Minister for Finance not to comment, in advance of the B...More Button

Retail Sector

Was asked: the percentage of transactions in retail outlets across the country in which persons pay with a debit or credit card; the arrangements in relation to the transaction fees that apply to the retailer...More Button

I am informed by the Central Bank that it does not collect data on the percentage of transactions in retail outlets where individuals pay with a debit or credit card, or on the transaction fees tha...More Button

In terms of fees paid by retailers, in order to be able to accept payment cards a retailer appoints an acquiring company and agrees a merchant service charge with that company. The amount of the...More Button

Budget 2016 introduced measures to support retailers by reducing costs and incentivising electronic payments. Changes were made to the interchange fees faced by retailers accepting cards, includ...More Button

The Central Bank does provide other credit and debit card statistics, including the number of debit and credit cards currently in issue to Irish residents, and these are available on the website ...More Button

Both of these sources of information evidence strong growth in the use electronic payments, particularly debit cards. The number of debit cards stood at 4,779,448 and the number of credit cards ...More Button

Lobbying Data

Was asked: the number of occasions on which he has been lobbied in respect of the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill since March 2016; the persons he has met with; the dates of these meetings; the details of the ba...More Button

Since March 2016, my Department has received nine Representations from a number of organisations regarding the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill, as follows:

  - IBEC;

 ...More Button

Was asked: the number of occasions on which he has been lobbied in respect of the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill since March 2016; the persons he has met; the dates of these meetings; the details of the basis o...More Button

Since March 2016, there have been seven Representations received from a number of organisations regarding the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill, as listed below:

  - Alcohol Health Al...More Button

Banking Sector

Was asked: the legacy losses outstanding from a tax perspective in banks (details supplied); the length of time into the future these losses can be carried forward to reduce tax; if an analysis has been carri...More Button

S396C was a provision to the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997, introduced by the NAMA Act 2009, which limited the amount of trading losses incurred by a NAMA participating bank that could be set off ag...More Button

Tax Credits

Was asked: his plans to increase the earned income tax credit to the same level as the PAYE credit; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Earned Income Credit was introduced in Budget 2016 and then increased in Budget 2017. The tax credit is available to taxpayers with active self-employed trading or professional income and to b...More Button

In Budget 2017, the Earned Income Credit was increased in value from €550 to €950.More Button

As the Deputy will appreciate, with less than a week to go to Budget 2018, it would be inappropriate for me to comment at this point on what may or may not be contained in that Budget..More Button

Question No. 55 answered with Question No. 50.More Button

Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement Investigations

Was asked: if the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement or the Financial Regulator has carried out investigations into a company (details supplied) regarding the way in which it has operated and dea...More Button

The Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement is under the aegis of the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation. Furthermore, section 949(3) of the Companies Act 2014 provides that ...More Button

Tax Reliefs Data

Was asked: the level of uptake to date on the improved CGT entrepreneur relief introduced in Budget 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

I am advised by Revenue that as the change to Capital Gains Tax entrepreneur relief took effect from 1 January 2017 and, as the tax returns for 2017 are not due to be filed until late 2018, it is n...More Button

Small and Medium Enterprises Supports

Was asked: if he has received the approval of the European Commission for the introduction of a share based incentive scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, on a foot of a review of share based remuneration conducted in 2016, it was announced in the Budget 2017 that work had commenced on the development of a new, SME-focuse...More Button

It was noted that such an incentive would require the approval of the European Commission and that officials would be engaging with the Commission to ensure that the incentive would comply with S...More Button

The Deputy will be aware that it is not the practice of the Minister for Finance to discuss in advance the details of measures which may be under consideration as part of the Budget and Finance B...More Button

Budget 2017

Was asked: the work that has been done since the announcement in budget 2017 on the possible introduction of a VAT compensation scheme for registered charities; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Following the Budget 2017 announcement by my predecessor, officials of my Department re-engaged with the Charities Institute to examine options in this regard.

  However, the De...More Button

Excise Duties Yield

Was asked: the excise duty on tobacco products collected in each of the years 2014 to 2016; the estimated amounted to be collected in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I am advised by Revenue that the excise duty collected on tobacco products in the years 2014 to 2016 is available on the Revenue's website at: More Button

Help-To-Buy Scheme Data

Was asked: the number of approved applications under the help-to-buy scheme to date in 2017; the estimated cost of the scheme in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I am advised by Revenue that statistics on the help-to-buy, HTB, scheme are available on the Revenue Statistics webpage at: More Button

Budget Measures

Was asked: the estimated amount to be collected in 2017 from the compliance measures specified in the summary of budget measures 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Budget 2017 specified three compliance measures: amendments in relation to Section 110 and fund changes (projected yield of €50 million); tackling offshore tax evasion (€30 million); and increased ...More Button

I am informed by Revenue that it is too early to accurately assess the impact of, or collection under, these headings for 2017. This will not be possible until after the end of the year. I am, ...More Button

Revenue will undertake detailed analysis of the Budget 2017 measures when data are available..More Button

Central Bank of Ireland

Was asked: the cost of regulation in the Central Bank per year in the past five years; the portion of these costs obtained from levies on financial institutions; his plans for the funding model for regulation...More Button

Sections 32D and 32E of the Central Bank Act 1942 (as amended by the Central Bank Reform Act 2010) provide that the Central Bank Commission may make regulations prescribing levies and fees to be pa...More Button

NAMA Social Housing Provision

Was asked: if he has received approval from the European Commission to reform NAMA in order to allow it to develop social and affordable housing on State-owned land; and if he will make a statement on the mat...More Button

The Deputy will be aware that NAMA is a wind-down vehicle, which is repaying its debt and maximising the value of its remaining assets. More Button

There are valuable expertise and skills in NAMA which may have a role to play in future housing delivery. Work is ongoing in considering how this expertise may be best utilised, giving due cogni...More Button

Excessive Deficit Procedure Implementation

Was asked: the State's final structural deficit in percentage terms in 2016; and if he expects changes at this point.More Button

The estimated structural deficit for 2016 was 1.4% of GDP, as published in the Summer Economic Statement 2017. 

  As the structural balance is a function of the general governmen...More Button

Data Collection

Was asked: the position regarding the public service records management plan; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

In July this year, I brought a joint memorandum to Government on behalf of myself and Minister Humphreys seeking approval of a Public Service Records Management Plan. The Government has approved t...More Button

Flood Prevention Measures

Was asked: if he will consider in conjunction with relevant Departments and other agencies introducing a pilot initiative for the clearance and upkeep of water courses, channels, streams and rivers in areas s...More Button

Heritage Sites

Was asked: the number of complaints received from the unions and safety representatives based at a location (details supplied); the nature of the complaints; his plans to deal with the matters raised; if ther...More Button

Public Sector Pay

Was asked: his views on whether PeoplePoint has sufficient resources to process all the incoming information; the number of persons in the Civil Service waiting on salary adjustments; the length of time they ...More Button

All payments are made with regard to the provisions of Payment of Wages Acts. 

  There are approximately 600 pay adjustment cases with PeoplePoint related to acting up allowance...More Button

Was asked: what pay rises public servants are due to receive under the Lansdowne Road agreement and its recently agreed successor, by salary bands and dates; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

The Public Service Stability Agreement runs from 2018-20 and has a cost over that period of €887 million. The overall benefits to different income groups range from 7.4% to 6.2% over three years. ...More Button

Superannuation Schemes

Was asked: if it is a breach of the Employment Equality Acts in relation to terms and conditions of employment on the ground of disability to oblige disabled civil servants to be members of the 1984 Civil Ser...More Button

The Civil Service Spouses’ and Children’s Scheme is a contributory scheme, membership of which is compulsory for men appointed on or after 1 January 1969 and women appointed on or after 1 June 1981...More Button

The Commission on Public Service Pensions, which examined a range of public service pension issues in its 2000 report, concluded that:More Button

"The spouses’ and children’s contributory pension schemes are key components in the public service pension system. We consider that the former, in particular, have proved to be one of the more i...More Button

The Pensions Commission stated that it accepted the view that public service spouses’ and children’s schemes are structured on a group insurance basis and that member contribution rates take acco...More Button

I am satisfied that the Civil Service Spouses' and Children's Contributory Pension Scheme meets the requirements of the Employment Equality Acts, 1998–2015 in relation to all of the grounds of di...More Button

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Telecommunications Infrastructure

Was asked: if the planning permissions for communication masts on sites need to be regularised to comply with planning regulations in instances in which a Garda station has been closed; the number of Garda co...More Button

Proposed Legislation

Was asked: the date on which the Data Sharing and Governance Bill will be introduced; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The draft general scheme of the Data Sharing and Governance Bill was approved by Government and published in August 2015. The purpose of the Bill is to promote and encourage data sharing between p...More Button

Pre-legislative scrutiny hearings on the Bill were held in April and May 2017 by the Joint Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, and Taoiseach with officials from my Department and...More Button

Work is well underway on the drafting of the Bill, which will be informed by the findings and recommendations contained in the Committee's report. The Bill must also take into account the provis...More Button

I intend to submit the text of the Bill to Government for approval to publish and commence passage through the Oireachtas by the end of this year or shortly thereafter..More Button

National Monuments

Was asked: the arrangements in place for visitors to the homestead of the 1916 signatory Seán Mac Diarmada; the months, days of the week and opening hours of the monument; his plans to extend these hours; the...More Button

Civil Service Staff Data

Was asked: the number of principal officer grade positions in the Civil Service; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The latest reconciled figures relating to end-Q2 2017 are that there were 771 serving Principal Officers at end June 2017 (in full-time equivalent or FTE terms), made up of 472 FTEs serving at PO s...More Button

Was asked: the number of Secretary General, Deputy Secretary, Assistant Secretary and Principal (Higher) Officer grade positions in the Civil Service respectively; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The information requested by the Deputy on the numbers of personnel serving in particular senior grades in the Civil Service is set out in the table (in full-time equivalent or FTE terms). 

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Was asked: the number of positions above Principal Officer grade in the Civil Service; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

On the basis of the latest reconciled data which relates to end-Q2 2017, there was a total of 269 (full-time equivalent) personnel serving in grades above Principal Officer in the Civil Service. ...More Button

Departmental Budgets

Was asked: the position regarding his Department's gender-proofing departmental budgeting processes; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Programme for a Partnership Government contains a commitment to develop the process of budget and policy proofing as a means of advancing equality, reducing poverty and strengthening economic a...More Button

A policy paper prepared by my Department in relation to equality budgeting is being published today alongside the Expenditure Report. This paper sets out the pilot approach that will be adopted ...More Button

In preparation for the introduction of a pilot programme of gender budgeting, my Department has hosted a workshop focused on gender budgeting which was attended by officials from across the Civil...More Button

Flood Relief Schemes

Was asked: if persons (details supplied) in County Kerry can be relocated in view of the persistent flooding problem at their home; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Garda Stations

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 98 of 4 October 2017, what companies are subletting a space or fixing to a Garda telecom mast and their location by Garda station, in tabular form. More Button

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 98 of 4 October 2017, the location in which the income from rental space on telecoms masts is lodged to; if An Garda Síochána keeps the income; if he is satisf...More Button

Was asked: the location of the site for the new Garda headquarters (details supplied) in County Sligo; if it has been procured; the status of the project; the timeframe for planning, construction and completi...More Button

Revised Estimates Publication

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 76 of 21 September 2017, when he expects to present a new Revised Estimates Volume for 2017 to Dáil Éireann; and if he will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Following the decision in relation to re-organisation of Government Departments, the composition of a number of Departments has changed particularly with the establishment of the Department of Rura...More Button

Question No. 84 answered with Question No. 82.More Button

Garda Station Refurbishment

Was asked: the status of the OPW's discussions on the refurbishment of a Garda station (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Pharmaceutical Sector

Was asked: when pharmacists and other self-employed persons will have their pay restored in view of the fact that FEMPI has been unwound in many sectors; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Under Section 9 of the Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Act 2009 (as amended), the power to vary fees paid to pharmacists and other health professionals is the responsibility in ...More Button

Arts Funding

Was asked: the discussions and meetings he has had with the local authority in Cork city regarding extra funding for the event centre; and if other Ministers have discussed it with him.More Button

Issues related to the Cork Event Centre are a matter for the Minister of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in the first instance. I have not had discussions or meetings with Cork City Council in...More Button

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