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 Header Item Broadcasting Sector Regulation (Continued)
 Header Item Energy Regulation

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 806 No. 1

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Deputy Michael Moynihan: Information on Michael Moynihan Zoom on Michael Moynihan We expect the highest standards from the national broadcaster and have seen the disastrous consequences when it has not adhered to best practice. That is a debate which has taken place in committee rooms and elsewhere. As the Minister said about the licence fee, society is changing and RTE, for all its technical advice and backup systems which were seen as the leaders in technology, seems to be somewhat behind the curve. Advertisers have moved away from it. Huge changes will take place in broadcasting in the next five to ten years. We often hear commentators in RTE talking about fat in the system in other businesses or State bodies. Are the Minister and the Department completely satisfied that every efficiency has been achieved in RTE, in terms of backroom staff, producers, researchers and so forth working on particular programmes? After his discussions with RTE and given the changing face of broadcasting, is the Minister satisfied that it is up to speed in what will be a completely changed system in the next five to ten years?

Deputy Pat Rabbitte: Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte It must be very disappointing for senior management in RTE that, having engaged in the serious restructuring it has carried out in the last couple of years and having had pay reductions and redundancies before similar companies, first quarter revenue income from commercial advertising has fallen. In the discussions I have had with the director general and the chairman of the board I have emphasised that the break-even objective for the end of this year has to be met, and the board accepts this. Unfortunately, this may mean management will look for more efficiencies. It is important to acknowledge the progress that has been made, at a cost of some hardship for persons who have left employment prematurely and those who have had changes in income and so on. However, the board and the director general are aware that they have to effect efficiencies wherever they can. It is also important to point out that they have used online services in coping with the changes in technology to which the Deputy pointed and have been doing so from the beginning. They are focused on the digital future of the company. My answer to the Deputy's question on whether there is an awareness and appreciation of the fact that they have to continue to make savings and achieve efficiencies where they can is yes. However, we come back to the net point that it is the diminishing commercial revenue that is causing the problem for the company.

Energy Regulation

 56. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett Information on Richard Boyd Barrett Zoom on Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte if he will outline all the processes and conditions surrounding the establishment and management of windfarms, both on and offshore, including required permissions, environmental stipulations, licensing, taxes, royalties and other benefits to the State; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27898/13]

Deputy Pat Rabbitte: Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte The development and operation of wind farms in Ireland require planning permission from the relevant planning authority and, in the case of offshore wind farms, a foreshore lease from the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government.

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