Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to oireachtas.ie

 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 86-103
 Header Item Water and Sewerage Scheme Grants
 Header Item Water Charges Introduction
 Header Item Appointments to State Boards
 Header Item Job Losses
 Header Item Cabinet Committee Membership
 Header Item Migration Data
 Header Item Economic Data
 Header Item Ministerial Adviser Appointments
 Header Item Ministerial Adviser Appointments
 Header Item Constitutional Convention Agenda
 Header Item Departmental Expenditure
 Header Item Departmental Staff Sick Leave
 Header Item Programme for Government Priorities
 Header Item Departmental Funding
 Header Item Cabinet Committee Meetings

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 774 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 162 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 86-103

Water and Sewerage Scheme Grants

 86. Deputy Denis Naughten Information on Denis Naughten Zoom on Denis Naughten asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Alan Kelly Zoom on Alan Kelly his plans to enhance the group sewerage scheme grant; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [38779/12]

 1060. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív Information on Éamon Ó Cuív Zoom on Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Alan Kelly Zoom on Alan Kelly if he intends increasing the maximum grants under the group sewerage and group water schemes; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [37855/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan I propose to take Questions Nos. 86 and 1060 together.

The rate of grant available for Group Sewerage Schemes is €2,031.58 per house or 75% of the cost of the scheme, whichever is the lesser. The National Rural Water Services Committee, which has a role in advising me on rural water policy, proposed that the rate of grant be reviewed during 2012. As a result of a review carried out by my Department I propose, in the first instance, to carry out a number of pilot schemes based on an increased grant level. Work on selection of the pilot schemes and related funding arrangements will be completed as soon as possible. I have no proposals to increase the existing grant for group water schemes.

Water Charges Introduction

 87. Deputy Micheál Martin Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Alan Kelly Zoom on Alan Kelly his views on whether it will now be 2016 before water charges are introduced; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [38807/12]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The Programme for Government and the Memorandum of Understanding with the EU, the IMF and the ECB provide for the introduction of domestic water charges. The Government considers that charging for water based on usage is the fairest way to charge for water and it has decided that water meters should be installed in households connected to public water supplies. International evidence has shown that where meters have been installed significant reductions have been achieved in the level of consumption and this is also borne out by the water savings achieved with metering in the group water sector. The Memorandum of Understanding with the EU, the IMF and the ECB requires the introduction of domestic water charges during the programme period.

Appointments to State Boards

 88. Deputy Gerald Nash Information on Gerald Nash Zoom on Gerald Nash asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he intends to undertake a review of the initiative taken by the Government to advertise publically positions available on the boards of semi-State companies and statutory agencies; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37165/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny There are no plans currently to undertake a review of the initiative to publicly advertise positions available on the boards of semi-State companies and statutory agencies.

Job Losses

 89. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the key sectors in which jobs have been lost in each quarter of 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [37683/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Taoiseach (Deputy Paul Kehoe): Information on Paul Kehoe Zoom on Paul Kehoe The exact information requested by the Deputy is not available. The Quarterly National Household Survey (QNHS) is the official source of estimates of employment in the State. It should be noted that the specific information regarding job losses requested by the Deputy is not available as the QNHS is a measure of the level of employment only. Changes in the level of employment are a function of both jobs lost and jobs created over the period in question. The most recent figures available for employment levels are for the first quarter of 2012.

  Estimates of the level of employment by sector up to and including the first quarter of 2012 are presented in Table 1 below. Given the seasonal nature of changes in employment across the year the estimates presented have been seasonally adjusted. Between the fourth quarter of 2011 and the first quarter of 2012 the level of employment fell by 7,300 on a seasonally adjusted basis. There was some level of fluctuation in numbers employed across all sectors of the economy with increases being recorded in some cases and decreases being recorded in others. As the QNHS is a sample survey the CSO urges some caution in interpreting changes of relatively low orders of magnitude.

Table 1   Seasonally Adjusted Series of persons aged 15 years and over in employment (ILO) classified by NACE Rev. 2 Economic Sector.

Quarter 1 2011 - Quarter 1 2012

Economic sector

- (NACE Rev. 2) Q1 2011 Q2 2011 Q3 2011 Q4 2011 Q1 2012
- All persons          
A Agriculture, forestry and fishing 83.9 85.6 81.1 81.3 81.4
B-E Industry 234.9 232.8 232.2 237.5 234.6
F Construction 108.0 106.3 107.5 106.8 103.1
G Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles 262.8 264.5 265.4 263.8 264.8
H Transportation and storage 94.6 94.7 94.4 91.1 89.7
I Accommodation and food service activities 102.7 108.3 111.1 115.7 111.3
J Information and communication 70.5 73.5 74.0 76.2 75.3
K-L Financial, insurance and real estate activities 101.1 102.9 97.9 102.2 100.3
M Professional, scientific and technical activities 101.9 100.7 96.8 94.7 94.2
N Administrative and support service activities 63.0 65.3 64.6 63.8 61.2
O Public administration and defence; compulsory social security 107.1 99.9 101.1 102.3 100.3
P Education 147.4 144.5 142.6 141.1 144.2
Q Human health and social work activities 232.9 237.9 236.1 237.2 236.9
R-U Other NACE activities 103.9 98.4 95.1 95.3 97.2
  Total Employment 1,818.1 1,816.1 1,796.5 1,807.6 1,800.3


Reference period: q1=Jan-Mar, q2=Apr-Jun, q3=Jul-Sep, q4=Oct-Dec.

Source: Quarterly National Household Survey, Central Statistics Office.

Cabinet Committee Membership

 90. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the composition of the Cabinet sub-committee on the children's referendum; the number of times it has met; the persons present at those meetings; the dates of those meetings; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [38439/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The Cabinet Committee on the Children's Referendum comprises the Taoiseach, the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources, the Minister for Justice and Equality, and the Attorney General.

  The Committee has met on two occasions to date - 23 August 2012 and 31 August 2012.

Migration Data

 91. Deputy Pearse Doherty Information on Pearse Doherty Zoom on Pearse Doherty asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the actual net migration to this State between April 2006 and April 2011; the estimated intercensal estimate of net migration between those same two dates and the reason for the difference; the steps that have been taken by the Central Statistics Office to improve the accuracy of its intercensal estimates.  [38529/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Taoiseach (Deputy Paul Kehoe): Information on Paul Kehoe Zoom on Paul Kehoe Net migration for the period 2006 to 2011 was 116,000. This was derived as the difference between the total usually resident population as measured at both censuses less the natural increase in the population (that is the births less the deaths) for the intervening period. The preliminary estimate of net migration over the 2006 to 2011 period, published as part of the annual population estimates series, was 29,000, giving a difference of 87,000 compared with the census figure.

To put the difference in context it is important to bear in mind that the estimated gross migration flows over this inter-censal period account for about one-sixth of the total 2011 population. The principal source of information for the inter-censal estimates of both immigration and emigration is the Quarterly National Household Survey (QNHS). The published estimates, which are classified by sex, broad age group, origin and destination, and nationality are subject to sampling variability. A revised series of inter-censal population estimates will be published on 27th September. This will incorporate data from a number of sources, such as: a more detailed analysis of the number of Personal Public Service (PPS) numbers allocated to non-Irish nationals in a given year who still had either employment (P35) or social welfare activity the following year; census results on one year inflows by age and sex, and the recorded years of arrival of immigrants.

Revisions to emigration data will incorporate details of work permits issued to Irish nationals in respect of a number of destinations including Australia, US, Canada and New Zealand. In addition, the number of National Insurance numbers (equivalent to PPS numbers) issued to Irish nationals in the UK will be incorporated in the revisions.

This new analysis will form part of ongoing work aimed at improving the methodology used to measure migration. The next issue of the Population and Migration Estimates to be published on 27th September 2012 will provide estimates of the population for April 2012 along with estimated immigration and emigration in the year to April 2012, and also revised estimates for immigration, emigration and total population for the years 2007-2011.

Economic Data

 92. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the input-output models that are used in the calculation of the national accounts for the years these are available in tabular form; and if he will set these tables out.  [36120/12]

Minister of State at the Department of the Taoiseach (Deputy Paul Kehoe): Information on Paul Kehoe Zoom on Paul Kehoe Supply and Use tables are compiled annually for Ireland, in line with EU regulations (Regulation (EC) No. 2223/96), which require their publication within a 3-year time lag. The tables, in their current format, have been published for the years 2000 to 2008 (2003 and 2004 on the web-only). Input-output tables are published at five-yearly intervals, also in line with EU regulations (Regulation (EC) No. 2223/96), most recently for the year 2005. Input-output tables for the year 2000 are also available. The compilation of the tables is coordinated with the publication of the National Accounts and the main National Accounts aggregates in the Supply and Use tables correspond with those in the latest National Accounts publication available at the time of the release of the Supply and Use tables.

The latest Supply and Use publication in respect of 2008 is available in the Dáil Library. The results can also be viewed on the CSO website.

Ministerial Adviser Appointments

 93. Deputy Jerry Buttimer Information on Jerry Buttimer Zoom on Jerry Buttimer asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will provide details of the number of political advisers employed by each of his predecessors in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36933/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny Details of the Special Advisers employed by my predecessors, Brian Cowen and Bertie Ahern, in the five year period from 2007 to 2011, are set out in the following table.

Year * Number of Special Advisers Former Taoiseach Responsible for Appointments
2011 6 Brian Cowen
2010 7 Brian Cowen
2009 7 Brian Cowen
2008 5 Bertie Ahern
2007 7 Bertie Ahern


* Position as at 1st January for each year.

Ministerial Adviser Appointments

 94. Deputy Jerry Buttimer Information on Jerry Buttimer Zoom on Jerry Buttimer asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will provide details of the number of political advisers employed by him or his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36934/12]

 105. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald Information on Mary Lou McDonald Zoom on Mary Lou McDonald asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will provide a list of all special advisers appointed by him or his Ministers of State since March 2011 whose salary exceeds the first pay point of the principal officer standard scale; the special advisers' names and salaries and salary increases awarded the aforementioned special advisers since March 2011. [36952/12]

 128. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the number and names of all special advisers, special press advisers, or any other type of ministerial adviser in his Department; the name of the Minister or Minister of State to whom they report; the salary of each adviser now; the salary of each adviser at the time he or she was appointed; if any salary increase was asked for; if it was granted; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [37500/12]

 133. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the political activities of each special adviser, special press advisers, or any other type of ministerial adviser in his Department; if any of them were members of a political party; if so, the parties to which they belonged; if any of them are or have been elected local authority members; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [37581/12]

 142. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the names of special advisers for whom salary increases have been requested; the amount requested; the details of those granted increases and the amount of that increase; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [40026/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny I propose to take Questions Nos. 94, 105, 128, 133 and 142 together.

  There are five Special Advisers employed by my Department, four of whom are my Special Advisers and one of whom is Special Adviser to the Government Chief Whip. The details requested in relation to their salaries and who they report to is set out in the following table.

Name Title Reports To Current Salary Salary at Time of Appointment
Mark Kennelly Chief of Staff Taoiseach €168,000 €168,000
Andrew McDowell Special Adviser Taoiseach €168,000 €168,000
Paul O'Brien Special Adviser Taoiseach €83,337 €80,051
Angela Flanagan Special Adviser Taoiseach €83,337 €80,051
Mark O'Doherty Special Adviser Government Chief Whip €83,337 €80,051


  Where salary increases occurred it was due to incremental progression in line with Department of Public Expenditure and Reform guidelines on remuneration for Special Advisers.

  Under the supervision of my Chief of Staff, the Special Advisers working in my Department provide briefings and advice on a wide range of policy matters, as well as performing such other functions as I may direct from time to time. They also liaise with other Special Advisers in each Government Department so that I remain informed on developments across Government.

  The restrictions under the terms of the Civil Service Code of Standards and Behaviour on civil servants engaging in political activity do not apply to Special Advisers and they can engage in political activity or join political parties if they wish.

  These are not matters for which my Special Advisers are accountable to me under their contracts of employment. For the Deputy's information, my Department provides office accommodation to three Special Advisers assigned to the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade and one Special Adviser assigned to the Minister of State for European Affairs.

Constitutional Convention Agenda

 95. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will extend the agenda of the Constitutional Convention to include the abolition of ground rent property rights and ensure that all freeholds are unencumbered by the medieval ground rent; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36935/12]

 96. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will extend the agenda of the Constitutional Convention to include the right of citizens to a home; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36936/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny I propose to take Questions Nos. 95 and 96 together.

As I said in my speech to the Dáil on 10 July last, when moving a Resolution approving the calling of the Constitutional Convention, the Government is of the view that the Convention’s work programme is appropriate and the issues that will be before it are not light matters. However, the Government would be prepared to consider whether other topics could be considered at a later date. The Government will review this matter in the light of experience and the Tánaiste and I will consult with Opposition representatives and the chairperson of the Convention at the appropriate time.

Departmental Expenditure

 97. Deputy Dara Calleary Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will provide a breakdown of costs, including autocue, make-up, consultants and other costs, incurred in his addresses to the nation in December 2011 and in May 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36937/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny My Department incurred no costs in respect of my addresses to the nation on Sunday 4th December 2011, and Sunday 27th May 2012.

Departmental Staff Sick Leave

 98. Deputy Niall Collins Information on Niall Collins Zoom on Niall Collins asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny the number of sick days taken by staff in his Department in 2009, 2010 and 2011; the average number of sick days per staff in total across his Department and broken down by Department section in 2009, 2010 and 2011; and the median number of sick days per staff in total across his Department and broken down by Department section in 2009, 2010 and 2011, in tabular form.  [36938/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The information sought by the Deputy in relation to sick absence statistics for the staff of my Department is listed in the following table.

Year Number of sick days taken by staff Average number of sick days per staff member Median number of sick days
2009 2,057.05 9.75 5.5
2010 1,247.47 6.15 5
2011 1,402.60 8.20 7


  In recent years, my Department has undergone considerable reorganisation and therefore it is not possible to provide accurate information on sick absence per section.

Programme for Government Priorities

 99. Deputy Terence Flanagan Information on Terence Flanagan Zoom on Terence Flanagan asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will outline his priorities for the year ahead and the achievements from the programme for Government to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36942/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny Last March, the Tanáiste and I launched the Programme for Government Annual Progress Report 2012 , a copy of which can be found on my Department’s website. The report sets out the Government’s work and achievements in its first year in office and outlines key Government prioirities for the year ahead. As outlined in the report, there has been significant activity across all Government Departments with particular attention and progress in stabilising the economy and our finances, improving our international reputation and focusing on the creation of jobs.

The prioirities set out for the Government in 2012 includes action on job creation and economic growth, mortgage arrears and driving the programme of public service, health and Constitutional reform. I can report that work is progressing well with recent developments being the publication of the the Personal Insolvency Bill, the second Action Plan for Jobs Progress Report showing 93% of measures delivered, announcement of the €2.25 billion investment in job-rich public infrastructure projects and progress towards the establishment of the Constitutional Convention. It is my intention to publish a second progress report next March.

Departmental Funding

 100. Deputy Dominic Hannigan Information on Dominic Hannigan Zoom on Dominic Hannigan asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny if he will provide details on moneys provided under any funding scheme by any section of his Department or any State agency under his Department's aegis to any group, scheme or project in County Meath in the years 2011, and up to July 2012 under the following headings: address, amount, purpose and under the funding scheme it was granted or awarded; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36943/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny My Department provided no funding to any group, scheme or project in County Meath from 1st Jan 2011 to the end of July 2012.

  Questions Nos. 101 and 102 answered with Question No. 1.

Cabinet Committee Meetings

 103. Deputy Micheál Martin Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny when the Committee on Economic Recovery and Jobs met recently; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [36949/12]

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The last meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Recovery and Jobs was on 3rd July. The Committee will next meet on Thursday 20th September.


Last Updated: 06/05/2020 09:09:41 First Page Previous Page Page of 162 Next Page Last Page