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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 360-384
 Header Item Capital Expenditure Programme
 Header Item Capital Expenditure Programme
 Header Item Departmental Funding
 Header Item Open Government Partnership
 Header Item State Bodies Abolition
 Header Item Public Procurement Regulations
 Header Item Departmental Expenditure
 Header Item Employment Rights
 Header Item National Partnership Agreements
 Header Item Insurance Coverage
 Header Item Public Sector Pensions Data
 Header Item Departmental Staff Data
 Header Item Public Sector Pensions Data
 Header Item Insurance Coverage
 Header Item Trade Agreements
 Header Item Local Enterprise Offices Remit
 Header Item Capital Programme Expenditure
 Header Item Contracts of Employment
 Header Item Capital Expenditure Programme
 Header Item Science Foundation Ireland Grants
 Header Item Departmental Funding
 Header Item EU Conventions
 Header Item Enterprise Support Services Provision
 Header Item Work Permit Criteria

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 791 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 84 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 360-384

Capital Expenditure Programme

 360. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin if he will provide a breakdown of the €31 million of capital funding spent by his Department during December; the reason 28% of his Department's overall capital spend was held until December; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5141/13]

: Information on Brian Hayes Zoom on Brian Hayes A breakdown of capital expenditure on the OPW Vote for 2012 including December is as follows:

F.S. Description/Subhead January to November Expenditure - € December Expenditure - € 2012 Total Expenditure - €
15 C.4 Grant Zoological (C1) 278,000 122,000 400,000
16 C.5 Grants for Refurbishment (C2) 191,750 58,250 250,000
20 C.6 Purchase of Sites & Bldgs (D) 544,697 500,000 1,044,697
25 C.7 New Works (Excluding C/F)(E) 24,828,836 6,623,586 31,452,423
28 C.13 EU Presidency Capital 2,837,150 1,115,779 3,952,929
36 C.11 Unitary Payments Capital (F6) 18,534,275 1,687,193 20,221,468
40 A.3 CEW Capital (G) 519,457 198,645 718,102
51 A.5 Flood Relief (H2) 33,952,908 18,062,342 52,015,250
- Gross Expenditure 81,687,074 28,367,795 110,054,869


  Capital expenditure on the OPW Vote in 2012 was broadly in line with profiled expenditure for the year including a significant level of expenditure profiled for December.

  Expenditure in December included payments for numerous projects including capital works for the EU Presidency and payments to Local Authorities for flood risk management works.

Capital Expenditure Programme

 361. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the amount of his Department’s €101 million capital spending for 2013 that will go towards construction projects; the projects are involved; he details of these projects; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5279/13]

Minister of State at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brian Hayes): Information on Brian Hayes Zoom on Brian Hayes Over €70m of the OPW’s €101m Capital allocation in 2013 will go towards construction projects. The estimated distribution of the capital allocation is as follows:



VOTE 13 Capital Estimates 2013
VOTE 13 2013 Allocation Comment
Flood Risk    
A3 Purchase of Machinery 500 Not Construction
A5 Flood Risk Management 44,500  
to include construction works at    
Mallow,Clonmel, Fermoy, Carlow, Bray, Ennis, Wateford, Tullamore, Dodder   catchment flood risk

assessment studies –

non construction work €10m.
Estate Portfolio Management    
C5 Culture Grants 250  
to include construction works at    
Glasnevin Cemetary    
C6 Purchase of Sites & Buildings 500 Not Construction
C7 New Works to include estimated construction works on Government Sites and Buildings including Office Rationalisation, Garda Programme, Built Heritage Programme, Cultural Programme 33,950  
C11 Unitary Payments 20,300 Not Construction
C13 EU Presidency 876  
Total 100,876

Departmental Funding

 362. Deputy Damien English Information on Damien English Zoom on Damien English asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin if he will provide details of all funding programmes in his Department that community, voluntary and sporting organisations may apply to for funding; if he will provide a brief overview of each programme; the opening and closing dates of each programme; the minimum and maximum amounts of funding that may be applied for; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5388/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin In response to the Deputy’s question I wish to confirm that my Department has no funding programmes that community, voluntary and sporting organisations can apply to.

Open Government Partnership

 363. Deputy Stephen S. Donnelly Information on Stephen Donnelly Zoom on Stephen Donnelly asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin if he will confirm a timeline for entering the Open Government Partnership, as indicated in the his Budget 2013 speech; if he will indicate the way he intends to structure the public consultation between the Government and civil society on development of the action plan; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5429/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin I envisage that the question of participation in the Open Government Partnership shall be put to government shortly.

  Subject to approval, a letter of intent will be issued to the co-chairs of the Open Government Partnership. Within 30 days of the letter being issued the public consultation phase shall begin. While the exact structure has yet to be finalized the public consultation will be a multi-stakeholder process, with active engagement of citizens and civil society.

  Work is underway within my department in meeting interested parties to determine the most appropriate structure for the public consultation.

State Bodies Abolition

 364. Deputy Brendan Griffin Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the number of quangos that have bee abolished since 9 March 2011; the savings that have been achieved as a result; the number of quangos that still exist; the annual cost of same; if there are any more planned to be axed during the duration of the 31st Dáil; if so, the savings that will be achieved through this; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5499/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin The streamlining of State Bodies is a key deliverable of the Public Service Reform Plan. The Plan included 48 rationalisation measures to be implemented by the end of 2012, as well as a further 46 critical reviews to take place by the end of June 2012, details of which are set out in Appendices IIa and IIb of the Plan which can be found on the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform’s website.

  With regard to the 48 agency rationalisation measures outlined in Appendix IIa of the Public Service Reform Plan, significant progress has been made by the responsible parent Departments on the implementation of these measures. The latest position on these measures to reflect progress to end Q4 2012 is included in the table in Appendix 1. Further detail or queries on this progress should be sought from the relevant Minister.

  As the Deputy will see from the table, the Commission on Public Service Appointments merger with the Ombudsman’s Office, both of which are under the aegis of my Department, was completed and is legislated for in the Ombudsman (Amendment) Act 2012.

  Other rationalisation measures may also have occurred outside or prior to the Public Service Reform Plan, these rationalisation measures are a matter for the individual Departments and should be directed to the relevant Ministers.

  With regard to further rationalisation measures to be introduced, I refer the Deputy to my answer to PQ 2813/13 answered on Wednesday 23rd January, 2013, which outlines the results of the critical review process and further rationalisation measures to be implemented by end 2013.

  Regarding savings, from the outset, I have maintained that the real benefit from the rationalisation of State Bodies will be a less crowded administrative landscape resulting in greater democratic accountability, less duplication of effort and clearer lines of responsibility for the citizen. This will be of real and lasting benefit to all citizens, regardless of any headline figure on savings.

  Specifically, the Public Service Reform Plan aimed to secure €20 million in enhanced service efficiencies and value-for-money from the rationalisation programme. The bulk of the savings are derived from a reduction in the number of public servants working in the State Bodies affected. This rationalisation programme is just one of the reform measures announced in the PSR plan and the Programme for Government which facilitates the Government in ensuring delivery of critical services while still being able to reduce public service numbers.

  There will of course be other cash savings realised over time as organisations, financial systems, office accommodation etc. are rationalised into leaner, more coherent structures. These savings, some of which will be once-off, will be factored into the overall budgetary framework as they arise.

  With regard to the Deputy’s question regarding the number of State Bodies that still exist, as I have stated before in previous PQs, there are three broad categories of State Bodies.

  Firstly, there are a number of Offices of State which typically are staffed by Civil Servants and have their own Vote for the allocation of public monies and which are within a Vote Group. A list of these bodies is set out in Appendix 2.

  Secondly there are non-commercial State Bodies who are usually staffed by Public Servants and funded (or part funded) through a grant-in-aid from their parent Department. Details of such bodies are set out in the Detailed Expenditure Information on Non-Commercial State Agencies included in the Revised Estimates for Public Services 2012, which can be found on my Department’s website at:

http://per.gov.ie/wp-content/uploads/REV-2012-Final.pdf  

  Beyond that within each Department there are many other executive offices, divisions and directorates, operational or consultative groupings, task groups or forums that exist for various purposes that might or might not meet the definition of ‘entity’. Many of these groups are transient in nature in response to the needs and business pressures of particular Departments and sectors and details of which would not be held centrally. Questions on such bodies should be directed to the relevant Ministers. The internal organisation of my own Department is set out at Appendix 3.

Appendix 1 - 47 Measures to be implemented by end 2012 (Progress to end Q4 2012)

  Bold text reflects those measures implemented fully

Department Ref No. * See Appendix IIa of the Public Service Reform Plan Body and Action Status
Education and Skills 1 to 3 Amalgamation of Further Education and Training Awards, Higher Education and Training Award Council and National Qualifications Authority of Ireland Amalgamation completed - Quality and Qualifications Ireland was established on 6 November 2012 under the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act 2012.
  4 Reduce Number of VEC’s from 33 to 16 The Bill completed the Committee Stage on 17 January 2013 and the Minister expects the Bill to be enacted before end March 2013
  5 & 6 Merge Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology and Council for the Humanities and Social Science into consolidated single council under HEA. Merger completed March 2012
Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation 7 & 8 Amalgamate the Competition Authority and National Consumer Agency The Bill is now included in the A List of the Government's Legislative Programme. Plans for the amalgamation are progressing in advance of the publication of the legislation.
  9-13 Rationalise the industrial relations / employee rights institutions The General Scheme of the Workplace Relations Bill has been approved by Government for priority drafting. The Cabinet approved the inclusion of the Workplace Relations Bill in the A list of the Spring Legislative Programme. The Minister is committed to enactment of the legislation at an early date, with a view to having the proposed new structures in place in 2013. Significant progress has been achieved to date on an administrative basis in terms of building the new two tier-model.
  14 Establish the scope to merge Forfás into the Department An Implementation Group, comprising senior management from the Department, Forfás and D/PER is overseeing the integration project.
  15 Review of City and County Enterprise Boards The Bill to dissolve the existing CEB structure and transfer their functions to Enterprise Ireland is included in the A List of the Spring Legislative Programme.
Environment, Community and Local Government 16 & 17 Merge Local Government Computer Services Board & Local Government Management Services Board Completed. Local Government Management Agency established in August 2012.
  18 & 19 Merge Regeneration Agencies in Limerick into Local Authorities (and extend remit of regeneration to certain city centre areas) Completed in July 2012.
  20 Subsume An Comhairle Leabharlanna into existing public body Completed. Provided for in the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act.
  21 Comhar to be integrated into the National Economic and Social Council. Completed January 2012.
  22 Interim Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency incorporating the Affordable Housing Partnership, National Building Agency and Centre for Housing Research Housing and Sustainable Communities Agency established in August 2012.
  23 Discontinue the Dormant Accounts Board DAB dissolved in December 2012.
Public Expenditure and Reform 24 Merge Commission on Public Service Appointments with Ombudsman Completed
Health 25 Merger of National Council for Professional Development of Nursing and Midwifery. Completed
  26 Merge Opticians Boards with the Health and Social Care Professionals Council Working Group advancing proposal. It is envisaged that the drafting of the Bill to subsume the Opticians Board will commence this year and finalised in 2014.
  27 Merge National Cancer Registry into HSE is not proceeding as decided by Government on 31 October 2012  
Justice and Equality 28 & 29 Merge Equality Authority with the Human Rights Commission to form new Commission The Bill has been approved by Government for priority drafting in the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel.  Aim is to have a draft Bill in February 2013. The measure is currently being progressed on an administrative basis prior to enactment of the necessary legislation.
Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht 30, 31 & 32 Combine Irish Museum of Modern Art, Crawford Art Gallery & National Gallery of Ireland. Framework for Co-operation & Improved Services agreed and endorsed by Government.
  33 & 34 Merge National Archives & Irish Manuscripts Commission, into National Library In order to achieve the greatest possible savings and efficiencies, it was decided that these rationalisation measures would be best implemented by deploying the existing National Archives (NAI) governance model to the National Library (NLI) and the National Museum (NMI). Draft Heads of Bill to amend current legislation have been drafted in consultation with the Institutions.
  35 Merge functions of An Coimisinéir Teanga with Ombudsman Office. Proposals to amend the Act will be brought to the Cabinet Committee on the Irish Language and the Gaeltacht in Q1 of 2013.
  36 & 37 Examine the issue of shared services and Board structure of both the National Library and Museum The NLI and NMI and the Department are working on an SLA to implement shared services on an administrative basis. Roll out of a HR shared service is well underway and it is envisaged that an SLA will be in place by end Q 1 2013.
Transport, Tourism and Sport 38 Merge NRA with Railway Procurement Agency General Scheme of Bill will be submitted to Government in Q1 2013
  39 & 40 Merge Irish Aviation Authority & Commission for Aviation Regulation It has been agreed that a restructuring of two agencies as opposed to a merger should take place.  This restructuring will take place by end 2014. 
  41 & 42 Legislation to be published in 2012 to enable the merger of National Sports Campus Development Authority with the Irish Sports Council in 2013. Draft General Scheme of Bill to be submitted to Government in Q1 2013
  43 Review Role of Shannon Development (Tourism) and possible merger into Fáilte Ireland The tourism functions of Shannon Development, together with the associated staff, will transfer to Fáilte Ireland during the 1st and 2nd quarters of 2013
  44 Dublin Regional Tourism Authority and possible merger into Fáilte Ireland Completed January 2012.
Defence 45 Merge Civil Defence Board into Department Completed January 2013.
CENR 46 Merge the Digital Hub Development Authority with Enterprise Ireland / IDA A review on proposed merger found that Dublin City Council would be a better merger partner for DHDA.  The merger was implemented on an administrative basis with necessary legislation to be progressed in 2013.
Children and Youth Affairs 47 Merge back-office functions of Ombudsman for Children with Information Commissioner A number of shared service opportunities are already realised. Discussions are ongoing between Ombudsman for Children’s Office and Ombudsman/Information Commissioner in relation to identifying further opportunities for back office functions to merge.
  48 Child and Family Support Agency  / Family Mediation Service transfer to Legal Aid Board The Government has approved the Heads of the Child and Family Support Agency Bill and has also agreed to the priority drafting of this Bill. The necessary legislative and organisational preparations are being prioritised so that the Agency can be established as a priority.


Appendix 2
- Offices of State etc. with their own Vote
Vote Service
1 President's Establishment
3 Office of the Attorney General
4 Central Statistics Office
5 Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions
6 Chief State Solicitor's Office
8 Office of the Comptroller & Auditor General
10 Office of the Appeal Commissioners
14 State Laboratory
16 Valuation Office
17 Public Appointments Service
19 Office of the Ombudsman
23 Property Registration Authority
    Note:  The above table does not include the Revenue Commissioners, the Office of Public Works, the Courts or the Prisons Services all of which are generally understood to be part of the Civil Service, the Garda or HSE Votes each of which are specific sectors, or the National Gallery which is a cultural institution with its own Vote.

Appendix 3
    Internal Organisation of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform

      Office of the Chief Medical Officer

      Remuneration and Industrial Relations

      Human Resources/Corporate Support Units

      Public Service and Reform Delivery (including Shared Services Transformation Unit)

      Expenditure policy Evaluation and Management

      Labour Market and Enterprise Policy

      Health, Pensions Policy and EU/NI

      Government Reform unit

      Centre for Management and Organisational Development (CMOD) and eGovernment

      Civil Service Human Resources

    Note all of the above report to the Secretary General of the Department.

      

    Other bodies under my Department include Top Level Appointments Committee (TLAC), Outside Appointments Board, Public Service Agreement Implementation Body, Civil Service Arbitration Board, the Valuation Tribunal, Special EU Programmes Body. Separately, both the Institute of Public Administration and the Economic and Social Research Institute receive Grant-in-aid from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.

Public Procurement Regulations

 365. Deputy Dara Murphy Information on Dara Murphy Zoom on Dara Murphy asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the guidelines and practices in force in dealing with public procurement contracts in awarding contracts to private enterprises and individuals; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5506/13]

 367. Deputy Dara Murphy Information on Dara Murphy Zoom on Dara Murphy asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the rules and regulations in relation to the public procurement for goods, services and contracts; if the regulations are the same for all public procurement; if it is a requirement that semi-State bodies apply the same rules; and if not, if he will outline the leeway or guidelines are required by law or otherwise to the semi State sector. [5849/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin I propose to take Questions Nos. 365 and 367 together.

  Public procurement is the acquisition, whether under formal contract or not, of works, supplies and services by public bodies. Public procurement in Ireland is governed by legal requirements, rules and guidelines set both at national and EU level. The general requirements are set out in the Public Procurement Guidelines - Competitive Process 2004 (revised). This guidance incorporates key elements of EU legislation that have been transposed into Irish law and is complemented by circulars and guidance issued by my Department and the National Procurement Service.

  The full range of regulations, circulars, guidelines and relevant template documents (e.g. standard forms of contract, model tender documentation) are available on the Government’s eTenders website at: www.etenders.gov.ie/guides/guides_main.aspx  

  Public procurement rules apply to: Central Government Departments and bodies under their aegis; Commercial or non-commercial state bodies; Local and regional authorities; and, entities that are substantially state-funded (over 50 per cent).

  Certain categories of contracts are excluded from the scope of the general EU public procurement Directive (EU Directive 2004/18/EC). These categories include:

  - contracts covered by the utilities rules (there is a specific regime for entities operating in the water, energy, transport and postal services sectors - EU Directive 2004/17/EC);

  - property transactions;

  - employment contracts;

  - public service concession contracts; and,

  - contracts dealing with defence.

  The utilities sector has a more flexible regime as entities operating in these sectors are more likely to be in direct competition with private sector suppliers.

  The aim of European and national rules is to promote an open, competitive and non-discriminatory public procurement regime which delivers best value for money.

Departmental Expenditure

 366. Deputy Thomas Pringle Information on Thomas Pringle Zoom on Thomas Pringle asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin if he will outline in tabular form the total cost of all conferences and seminars attended by his Department in 2012; the purpose of each conference/seminar; the location; the number of delegates that attended from his Department/agencies or otherwise that were represented; the total cost of each conference/seminar; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5641/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin In response to the Deputy’s question the following table outlines the number of staff in my Department/agencies that attended conferences or seminars in 2012:

Name & Purpose of Conference Location Number of delegates T&S Cost
The 8th National Health Summit Dublin 1   €362.85
Legal Professional Privilege and the Protection of Communications Dublin 1   €295.00
Judicial Review Law Conference Dublin 1   €150.00
Health Management Institute Conference Dublin 1   €100.00
Planning and Environmental Law Conference Dublin 1   €395.00
Enforcing European Union Environmental Law Cork 1 €134.99  
IPA - Economic Recovery & Public Sector Reform Dublin 4   €760.50
Judicial Review and Statutory Appeals Dublin 1   €295.00
Grief at Work Seminars Dublin 1   €350.00
Data Protection Conference -  Practical Compliance Dublin 4   €1,650.10
Justice Conference 2012 – Delivering Efficient, Affordable and Efficient Services Dublin 3   €595.00
Good Governance - Responsibilities of Managers Dublin 1   €180.00
Governance Forum- Responsibilities of Managers Dublin 1   €225.00
IPASS Annual Update Day Louth 2   €575.00
ACCA Debate - Irelands President’s Debate Dublin 1   €20.00
Mindful Leader Conference - Leadership Qualities Dublin 1   €120.00
Excellence Through People Information Day Dublin 1   €50.00
Saville Wave Seminar - Personality Questionnaires Belfast 1   €33.00
ACCA Conference - Mortgage Arrears into perspective Dublin 1   €35.00
ACCA Conference - Employee Rights & Employer Duties Dublin 1   €35.00
ACCA Taxation Conference - Taxation Update Louth 1   €35.00
Public Sector Reform Conference - Public Sector Reform Dublin 1   €240.00
Excellence Through People Conference - Getting Peoples Buy-In to Quality Portlaoise 1   €75.00
ACCA Breakfast Conference - Joe Durkin speaking Dublin 1   €35.00
Achilles Conference - Getting the content of OJEU & National Notices right Dublin 1   €75.00
Achilles – Choosing the Best Selection & Award Criteria Dublin 1   €75.00
Achilles -  Contract Management for General Procurements Dublin 1   €75.00
9th UN Careers Roundtable Brussels 1   €318.00
IPA Conference – Accounting Reform for the Irish Public Service Dublin 1   €295.00
ACCA Budget Briefing Dublin 1   €35.00
Future of HR in the Public Sector – Development in Public Sector Human Resource Management Dublin 1   €301.35
Society of Forensic Toxicologists (SOFT) Conference – Developments in Forensic Toxicology Boston 1   €3,194.59
United Kingdom & Ireland Association of Forensic Toxicologists (UKIAFT) Conference – Developments in Forensic Toxicology Belfast 1   €329.04
Employment Law Seminar – Developments in Employment Law Kildare 1   €44.70
Inaugural Willing Able Mentoring (WAM) Seminar – Debate on Disclosing Disability in the Workplace Dublin 1   €8.00
Pathways to Work Dublin 1   €116.85
Public Internal Control Seminar Dublin 2   €12.40
County & City Librarians Association Seminar – Public Service Reform Wicklow 1 €39.30  
Annual Institute of Internal Auditors Conference Meath 3   €2,408.98
Internal Audit Conference (EU) – Developing cross-EU Internal Audit liaison Brussels 2   €1,290.61
Internal Audit Conference Dublin 7   €208.44
Achieving Reform for the Public Sector Conference Dublin 2   €731.23
State Aid Rules for National & EU Funds – Update Berlin 1   €2,459.96
Technical Group Meeting – Update on technical issues for EU Structural Funds Brussels 2   €1,779.40
IFRS Update Course – Update on Financial Reporting Standards Dublin 1   €353.41
IBEC – HR Conference Dublin 2   €971.70
IPA Housing Practitioners Conference Limerick 1 €102.78 €250.00
Institute  of Chartered Accountants – Euro Zone Crisis Dublin 1   €239.85
Total     €277.07 €22,184.96
  Details regarding conferences and seminars attended by OPW in 2012 are currently being compiled and will be forwarded to the Deputy shortly.

  Question No. 367 answered with Question No. 365.

Employment Rights

 368. Deputy Peadar Tóibín Information on Peadar Tóibín Zoom on Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the systems in place to ensure that all contractors and sub-contractors employed on construction, refurbishment and maintenance projects funded by the State are fully compliant with Irish and European labour laws and regulations; if he will give an assurance that no contractor or sub-contractor employed on such contracts is currently in breach of any aspect of Irish or European labour law and regulations. [5862/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin In relation to the general issue of employment law and its enforcement, these are matters for my colleague Mr. Richard Bruton, T. D. Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and the National Employment Rights Authority (NERA) respectively.

  Under a public works contract the contractual relationship is between the public body and the main contractor. The public body does not conduct the procurement process for each sub-contract package under a public works contract; this is carried out by the main contractor who is not subject to the rules governing public procurement.

  The public works contracts include a clause on pay and conditions of employment which require the main contractor to ensure that all those employed on the works (including those employed by sub-contractors) are paid in accordance with the Registered Employment Agreement (Construction Industry wages and conditions of employment). This is enforced through a number of measures which include the display of the relevant clause on the site in a location that is readily accessible to all those employed on the site, a requirement for a certificate from the contractor with each payment application stating that all those employed on the works are paid in accordance with the REA, withholding of any payment if the certificate is not provided, a deduction from sums due to the main contractor of the amounts due to workers in accordance with the REA if a certificate is subsequently found to be false and termination of the contract in the case of a persistent breach.

  The Deputy will be aware of the grounds upon which an applicant may be excluded from a public tender from my reply of the 16th January 2013 to a series of recent Parliamentary Questions on the same subject (Reference Numbers 57826/12, 57828/12 and 57830/12). It is possible that following a public tender a company could be awarded a public works contract where a contracting authority may not be aware of any outstanding judgements by the Labour Court made against a tenderer.

  The management of a public works contract is a matter between a contracting authority and a main contractor. It is the responsibility of each contracting authority to ensure that contractors comply with all the requirements of the contract. If the Deputy is aware of any non-compliance he should contact the relevant contracting authority directly.

National Partnership Agreements

 369. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin if he will consider inviting the Irish Postmaster Union to join Croke Park 2 discussions; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5873/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin The Public Service (Croke Park) Agreement was negotiated and agreed as an Industrial Relations Agreement between public service employers and the public service committee of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions as representatives of employees in the public service. Current discussions in relation to an extension of the Public Service Agreement are being conducted on a similar basis. The Irish Postmasters Union is the representative body for postmasters employed with An Post, which as a commercial semi-state body, is not a party to the Public Service Agreement.

Insurance Coverage

 370. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the position regarding home insurance in respect of residents (details supplied) in Dublin 3 who are having problems as the seafront is considered a potential sea flood issue. [5881/13]

Minister of State at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brian Hayes): Information on Brian Hayes Zoom on Brian Hayes I am well aware of the difficulties some people have been experiencing in securing insurance cover for flood risk at affordable prices or at all.

  Homeowners experiencing difficulties can contact the Irish Insurance Federation free Insurance Information Service. Their service can be contacted at (01) 676 1914 or by email at iis@iif.ie.

  If they need to pursue the matter further they can contact the Financial Services Ombudsman who deals independently with unresolved complaints from consumers about their individual dealings with all financial service providers. The Office can be contacted at http://www.financialombudsman.ie/ and is a free service to the complainant.

  On foot of my constructive engagement with the insurance industry last year, I indicated that I wished to see an agreement reached as quickly as possible between the Office of Public Works and the IIF on a sustainable system of information sharing in relation to completed flood alleviation schemes and works undertaken by the OPW or, in certain instances, by local authorities with OPW funding, and where the standard of protection afforded by these works could be verified.

  Work has been ongoing in OPW on compiling information on such completed flood defence works in an appropriate format. A working group has been established between OPW, the IIF and representatives of several insurance companies to progress the work further. The first meeting of this working group took place in January.

  I am confident that good progress can be made on the exchange of information in order that the insurance industry can be better informed as to the extent and standard of investment by the OPW in flood protection measures and that that investment is taken fully into account in assessing flood risk for insurance purposes

  As the Deputy is aware, Dublin City Council developed proposals for a flood defence scheme to provide protection against coastal flooding in the Clontarf area, for which the OPW agreed to provide funding. However, when the proposals were exhibited to the public by the Council there were a number of objections and as a result the scheme did not proceed. If alternative proposals are developed by the Council, they will be considered for funding by the OPW having regard to the overall availability of resources for flood risk management.

Public Sector Pensions Data

 371. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the number of former public servants recruited before 6 April 1995 who are currently receiving a public sector pension including both pensions funded by the Exchequer and through the Local Government Fund, and those pension schemes for which he has responsibility; the age profile of those public servants; if he will provide in tabular form the numbers of public sector pensioners in the following parameters between €1,000 intervals up to €20,000 and those on more than €20,000. [5896/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin The response hereunder relates to Established and Unestablished Civil Servants only. Details in respect of other categories of Public Servants should be sought from the relevant Minister (eg Minister for Environment and Local Government in respect of Local Government pensioners).

Annual Pension Range No of payees
0 - 1000 25
1001 - 2000 58
2001 - 3000 96
3001 - 4000 150
4001 - 5000 174
5001 - 6000 146
6001 - 7000 197
7001 - 8000 185
8001 - 9000 187
9001 - 10000 235
10001 - 11000 223
11001 - 12000 203
12001 - 13000 205
13001 - 14000 195
14001 - 15000 223
15001 - 16000 245
16001 - 17000 240
17001 - 18000 233
18001 - 19000 310
19001 - 20000 191
20001 + 7621
  11342


  Annual Pension figures quoted refer to annual pension after deduction of PSPR.

  It is not possible to provide the breakdown between each age bracket and pay bracket.

  Within the figure of 11,342 Civil Servants the breakdown is as follows:
Civil Servants -
Under 60 2718
60-65 2484
Over 65 6140
- 11342

Departmental Staff Data

 372. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin if he will provide details in tabular form of the limits applied to each Government Department/sector under the Employment Control Framework for each year since its inception and for the coming years; the basis on which these limits are set; the process by which they are determined; if such decisions are based on impact assessments; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5925/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin The data requested by the Deputy in relation to reductions in public service numbers in 2013 is set out in Expenditure Report 2013, Table 6 Public Service Staff Numbers (Whole Time Equivalents) page 132. A copy of this publication was given to all Deputies on Budget day. It is also available on my Department’s website http://budget.gov.ie/Budgets/2013/2013.aspx.

  A similar table is published each year in the Revised Estimates for the Public Services Volume which again are made available to Deputies.

  I would also request Deputies to note that the historical data public service numbers is available on my Department’s website (http://databank.per.gov.ie/) from 1994 to Quarter 3 2012. This data is regularly updated and I would urge all Deputies to utilise this resource.

  The Government is committed to reducing public service numbers to 282,500 by the end of 2014 as part of its Reform Agenda. The overriding objective is to have a more customer focused, leaner, more efficient and better integrated public service which delivers maximum value for money. Number ceilings are set by Government for each Sector/Department, it is then a matter for individual Ministers to allocate staffing resources, within his or her own area of responsibility, with due regard to Government policies and priorities.

Public Sector Pensions Data

 373. Deputy John Paul Phelan Information on John Paul Phelan Zoom on John Paul Phelan asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin the number of persons on State pensions that have worked in semi-State companies and in the following bands, between €50,000 and €60,000, between €60,000 and €70,000, between €70,000 and €80,000, between €80,000 and €90,000, between €90,000 and €100,000 and over €100,000; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [5928/13]

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has responsibility for administering Pensions to Established and un Established Civil Servants only. The responsibility for persons on State Pensions is with my colleague the Minister for Social Protection.

  The responsibility for persons who have worked in Semi State Companies is a matter for the Minister whose Department/aegis the Semi State Company is under.

Insurance Coverage

 374. Deputy Maureen O'Sullivan Information on Maureen O'Sullivan Zoom on Maureen O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin further to Parliamentary Question No. 147, the progress he has made in addressing the issues faced by communities who cannot secure insurance for flooding, especially for those where remedial work has been done; if he will consider State intervention on this matter; if he will address the implications for those homes when it comes to property tax; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6052/13]

Minister of State at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brian Hayes): Information on Brian Hayes Zoom on Brian Hayes As I advised the Deputy in October 2012 I am conscious of the difficulties some people have been experiencing in securing insurance cover for flood risk at affordable prices or at all.

I have been pressing the Irish Insurance Federation for agreement on a sustainable system of information sharing particularly for locations vulnerable to flooding and for identifying flood alleviation schemes and works completed and where the standard of protection afforded by these works could be verified.

A working group has now been established between the Office of Public Works, the IIF and representatives of several insurance companies to progress this work. I am confident that a system of information sharing can be agreed which will enable the insurance industry to be more fully informed as to the extent of the OPW investment in flood protection measures and to take that investment fully into account in assessing flood risk for insurance purposes. The first meeting of this working group took place in January.

My colleague the Minister for Finance has recently reiterated that the issue of provision of new flood cover or the renewal of existing flood cover is a commercial matter for insurance companies, which has to be based on a proper assessment of the risks they are accepting. These are often considered on a case by case basis and it is important to be clear that neither the Government nor the Central Bank has any influence over this matter.

The Local Property Tax (LPT) is a matter for the Minister for Finance and I understand the Deputy has tabled a separate Parliamentary Question to him on whether LPT applies to these properties.

Trade Agreements

 375. Deputy Brendan Smith Information on Brendan Smith Zoom on Brendan Smith asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton if he will ensure during the Irish Presidency of the EU that any proposed EU/Canada Trade Deal does not threaten the viability of Irish and EU Agriculture; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that an agreement of large tariff-free volumes of Canadian imports would cause significant market damage for Irish exports to the European Union, particularly for the beef and pigmeat sectors; if he will ensure that any moves to liberalise trade for sensitive products including beef and pigmeat are resisted; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5526/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton A Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement between the EU and Canada has been under negotiation since 2009. There is a very real prospect that deal could be concluded shortly. This should open up opportunities for Irish and EU businesses, and provide economic benefits in the medium to longer term.

As with any set of negotiations, each side has its own set of interests. Throughout the negotiations, I have consistently emphasised to the Commissioner, the EU Commission and the other Member States, the importance for Ireland and the EU that the Agreement with Canada, would reflect the economic importance of the agriculture sector, and that any agreement reached with Canada must be balanced and fair.

I will continue to look for an Agreement that is comprehensive and balanced and one that delivers real trade and economic potential for our economy. In this context I recognise the need to take into account the impact of trade liberalisation and market opening on sensitive areas of the economy and will continue to express and press our case that any agreement respects our broad trade interests and especially those of the agriculture sector.

Local Enterprise Offices Remit

 376. Deputy Nicky McFadden Information on Nicky McFadden Zoom on Nicky McFadden asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton if he will ensure that the structure of local enterprise offices established to support business startups and enterprise will include representation from the local business community; if the services provided by LEOs will be judged using clearly stated indicators; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5064/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton The ultimate aim of the reform of the micro and small business support infrastructure is to rejuvenate and enhance the current national model. This will ensure that the micro and small business sector is properly positioned to be a lead player in relation to job creation and to the economic recovery process.

This new model is designed to deliver enhanced tailored supports to the highest standards, benchmarked by Enterprise Ireland (EI) through its Centre of Excellence, delivered in partnership with the Local Authorities. A series of metrics are being developed which will be tailored to suit the size and capacity of each Local Enterprise Office (LEO) and will be included in a local Enterprise Development Plan that will be agreed annually between each LEO and EI which addresses the development needs of micro-enterprises in their respective counties.

An Implementation Working Group, chaired by my Department, charged with implementing the reform process, is close to finalising a Framework Service Level Agreement (SLA) between Enterprise Ireland and the Local Authorities. This SLA will provide for the establishment of an Evaluations and Approvals Committee for each LEO. Individuals from the local business sector with specific business experience and expertise will be invited to serve on the Committees.

In November last year, Minister Perry and I published a Consultation Paper which sets out the road map for the implementation of the reform process. Over 80 submissions were received and these responses will assist in shaping the policy and operational scope of the new LEOs. Many of the submissions make positive suggestions on how the reform could be rolled out effectively across a range of issues, including mentoring, training, staff development and structure of the LEO. The submissions will be published on my Department’s website in due course.

Capital Programme Expenditure

 377. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton if he will provide a breakdown of the the €150 million of capital funding spent by his Department during December; the reason 30% of his Department’s overall capital spend was held until December; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5139/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton My Department’s Exchequer allocation supports the transition to an economy based on exports, enterprise and innovation through Capital funding to its Agencies and Programmes such as IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, the County Enterprise Boards, Shannon Development, InterTrade Ireland, INTERREG, the National Standards Authority of Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland, the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions (PRTLI) and the Temporary Partial Credit Guarantee Scheme.

My Department adopts a very careful and prudent approach in relation to the spending of taxpayers' money and disburses monies in line with the drawdown requirements of the various Agencies and Programmes. In this regard, the Programmes supported through Capital expenditure are generally demand-led and, as a result, the pattern of disbursement is essentially determined accordingly. By the end of December 2012, €482 million in Capital was expended from my Department’s overall Capital allocation of €514m to fund the on-going enterprise support activities of the various Bodies mentioned above. In addition, an amount of €25 million of Capital was carried over into the Department's 2013 Capital allocation in line with the provisions of the Government's Multi Annual Expenditure Framework.

This Framework and budgetary approach enables Departments to manage Capital Budgets on a multi -annual basis and facilitates the Department in managing the challenges associated with the demand-led nature of grant payments and issues relating to the timing of expenditure and ensures that the Capital allocation is utilised to maximum effect.

The Provisional Outturn figures for 2012, on an individual Agency and Programme basis, are currently being finalised for publication as part of the Revised Estimate Volume for 2013.

Contracts of Employment

 378. Deputy Brendan Griffin Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton the progress that has been made with employers regarding extending contracts of employees beyond the age of 65 years to allow them to remain in the workforce. [5250/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton Generally a contract of employment will contain a specific retirement age and this is a matter of contract between the relevant parties.

I understand that the Department of Social Protection is chairing an inter-Departmental Group on Working and Retirement issues, on which my Department is represented. This Group has been initiated to consider cross-departmental policy issues that will support longer working. In this regard, the Department of Social Protection arranged a Working and Retirement Forum in Croke Park on 12 December 2012 at which a broad range of interest groups were represented, including those interest groups representing older persons.

Capital Expenditure Programme

 379. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton the amount of his Department’s €458 million capital spending for 2013 that will go towards construction projects; the projects are involved; the details of these projects; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5278/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton The Gross Exchequer Capital Allocation for 2013 for my Department is €458 million.

  This Capital funding is primarily expended through various agencies under the remit of my Department, including IDA Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland, Shannon Development, Inter Trade Ireland, INTERREG, the National Standards Authority of Ireland, and the 35 City and County Enterprise Boards. Capital funding has also been allocated for expenditure by my Department in 2013 in respect of the Temporary Partial Credit Guarantee Scheme and the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions.

  The funding provided to the agencies is used to operate programmes that provide a range of grants, supports and financial facilities to clients. Capital funding also covers the maintenance and development of the agencies’ buildings and upgrading of equipment.

  Details of the Capital funding provided towards construction projects by a number of the agencies/programmes under the remit of my Department in 2013 are provided below:

Programme for Research in Third-level Institutions (PRTLI)

  Under the Programme for Research in Third-level Institutions (PRTLI) Capital funding is being provided through my Department in 2013 to meet expenditure commitments and to maintain continued support to 20 research projects that are construction related. These infrastructure projects cover buildings, research laboratories and some research equipment. These strategically important projects will enhance Ireland’s competitive offering in a range of research and innovation areas spanning ICT, pharmaceutical, medical devices/technologies, energy and environment, food, culture and creative sectors, and nanotechnology. The PRTLI also includes matching private and EU co-funding with most projects having multiple academic and industry partners.

  The Deputy should also note that the PRTLI element is often part of bigger infrastructure projects supported across the various colleges. The PRTLI programme is administered on behalf of my Department by the Higher Education Authority.

  The specific PRTLI capital infrastructural projects being supported by my Department (with lead higher education institution listed) at this time are:

  Centre for Research in Advanced Therapeutic Engineering – Cork IT;

  Nano-BioAnalytical Research Facility – Dublin City University;

  Environmental Health Sciences Institute – Dublin IT;

  Advancing Medicine through Discovery – NUI Galway;

  Arts Humanities Social Sciences Research Building – NUI Galway;

  Innovation Value Institute – NUI Maynooth;

  NUI Maynooth ICT Infrastructure Development;

  Irish Transgenic Network – Trinity College Dublin;

  The TCD Biomedical Sciences Development – Trinity College Dublin;

  Translating Biosciences into Health – University College Cork (UCC);

  Environmental Research Institute at the Maritime and Energy Cluster, Ireland – (now rebranded as IMERC) – UCC;

  Generating Wealth through Innovative & Collaborative Research – UCC;

  BSI West – UCC;

  Tyndall FlexiFab for Applied Convergent Nanotechnologies – Tyndall National Institute, Cork;

  Nanomechanical Approaches and Functional Materials for Regenerative Medicine – University College Dublin (UCD);

  UCD Science Centre - CASL and CLARITY;

  UCD Science Centre - Earth Systems Institute;

  UCD Science Centre - Systems Biology Ireland;

  UCD Science Centre - Radiopharmaceutical Research and Service Centre;

  National Centre for Applied Materials Research – University of Limerick.

  These projects, being supported primarily under PRTLI Cycle 5 which was initiated in 2011, amount to a public/private investment of approximately €259m. The investment is expected to provide employment of close to 2,000 construction related jobs over the course of this Cycle of funding.

  Enterprise Ireland

  A vibrant start-up culture is essential to the dynamism of the Irish economy. Stimulating the flow of new high-potential start-ups (HPSUs) is one of the fundamental building blocks in Enterprise Ireland’s overall strategy for indigenous industrial development.

  To this end Enterprise Ireland, through its Research and Innovation Programme, has supported the development of campus incubation centres in the Universities and Institutes of Technology with the objective of fostering spinouts from research in the colleges, and spin-ins from outside the college environment which leverage third-level expertise to develop their start-up venture. The Campus Incubators are particularly important in providing a halfway house for academics who are transitioning towards launching a research spin-out, as well as providing initial incubation space for the entrepreneurs emerging successfully from Enterprise Ireland’s New Frontiers entrepreneur development programme.

  At present, there are 330 companies in campus incubation units across the country, employing about 1,500 people. These start-ups are operating across a range of areas including software, environmental technologies and digital media.

  EI has invested €50m to date in the provision of campus incubation facilities across the state. At this stage, all Universities and Institutes of Technology have on-campus incubators already built and operational, with the exception of the National University of Ireland Maynooth where an incubation facility is at the design stage, and DIT, who plan to build a facility on the Grangegorman campus.

  In total in 2013 €1m is expected to paid in respect of campus incubation activities.

  IDA Ireland

  IDA Ireland’s Capital allocation for 2013 provides funding towards IDA’s property function and grant payments.

  The grant payments provided for in 2013 are in relation to projects which have been approved in previous years. The majority of grants paid in 2013 will be in the areas of Research, Development and Innovation, Training and Employment Projects and a small number of New Industry (Capital) Projects. These latter grants are paid in the main for construction projects by client companies. Grants are drawn down by Client Companies on reaching the relevant grant payment milestones and targets.

  Commercial sensitivities and the demand led nature of payments preclude IDA Ireland from providing details of payments that will be made for New Industry Grants in 2013 until they are drawn down. However, as an example of payments made in previous years, a table of New Industry Grants paid over the last five years is listed below:

Year  Total New Industry (Capital) Grants Paid
2011 €11.774m
2010 €10.366m
2009 €2.203m
2008 €2.760m
2007 €11.650m


  INTERREG

  My Department co-funds a range of Enterprise projects under an INTERREG North-South programme. It is anticipated that approximately €800,000 of my Department’s expenditure under this programme in 2013 will be incurred on construction projects, which will involve the provision of various facilities to assist the development of specific enterprise initiatives in the border region.

Science Foundation Ireland Grants

 380. Deputy Peter Mathews Information on Peter Mathews Zoom on Peter Mathews asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton the amount of money disbursed in grant aid in each of the years 2000 to 2012 by Science Foundation Ireland, and to detail such disbursements by scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5286/13]

Minister of State at the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Sean Sherlock): Information on Seán Sherlock Zoom on Seán Sherlock Science Foundation Ireland was formally established through the Industrial Development (Science Foundation Ireland) Act 2003 and its remit covers the provision of research grants to Ireland’s higher education institutions to support research in strategic areas of scientific endeavour that concern the future development and competitiveness of industry and enterprise in Ireland.

  Prior to its statutory establishment, SFI operated as a sub-committee of Forfas and disbursed grants during the period 2001 until its statutory establishment on 25 July 2003 as follows:

  2001 - €10.90m

  2002 - €31.00m

  2003 - €17.60m.

  Details of the disbursement of SFI grants for the period 2003 – 2011 are outlined in the following tables. Further detailed information, for example on the nature of the programmes listed in the tables, is provided for in each of SFI’s Annual Reports 2003 – 2011 inclusive, which are available on www.sfi.ie. SFI systems and programme offerings have evolved quite significantly over that period, hence the more detailed provision of material at programme level from 2008 onwards. SFI grant offerings typically span a three to five year term.

  The SFI Accounts for 2012, where total grants expenditure amounted to €156m, require final approval and sign-off by the Comptroller and Auditor General. Consequently it is not possible to provide a definitive breakdown of expenditure per programme for 2012 at this point.

  Table 1 – SFI grants expenditure by Biotechnology, ICT and Research Frontiers
Research Area 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003*
Biotechnology Grants 60,010 56,712 46,205 44,887 13,342
Information & Communications Technology Grants 70,252 63,680 60,234 54,587 19,628
Research Frontiers Grants 26,360 19,473 15,716 9,082 14,416
TOTAL 156,622 139,865 122,155 108,556 47,386
  *From 25 July 2003-31 Dec 2003

  Table 2 – SFI programme expenditure 2008 – 2011
Programme 2011 2010 2009 2008
Principal Investigators 51,973 53,098 51,663 43,081
Centres for Science, Engineering & Technology 32,090 36,891 29,264 31,197
Strategic Research Clusters & Other Centres 31,654 23,941 28,661 22,447
Research Frontiers Programme 11,030 12,748 27,418 26,228
STOKES 8,044 9,238 6,391 8,515
TIDA-HIPA  (Technology Innovation Development Awards/Health Innovation Development Awards) 5,695 1,892 585 -
ETS Waltons 2,377 153 1,736 2,089
President of Ireland Young Research Awards 2,107

2,587


4,231


3,202
Maths Initiative 1,990 3,409 4,072 2,463
SIRG – Starter Investigator Research Grants 1,784 717 1,581 -
Short Term Travel Fellowships 1,020 - 158 498
US Ireland R&D Partnership 994 769 725 25
Engineering - Professorship and Lectureship Programme 832 832 873 98
Conference & Workshops 507 236 341 349
Translational Research Awards 500 - - -
UREKA 424 1,274 1,687 2,551
NanoSCi-E+ Transnational Call 329 40 254  
PICA 139 287   1,137
WISER 84 93 89 76
Joint Programming Initiatives 49 - - -
Research Professorship - 1,346 4,638 6,390
Research Supplements provided on a range of STAR, Industrial, North-South Awards 427 584 1,322 1,313
E-Journals - - - 8,250
European Research Council - - - 230
Charles Parsons Energy Research Grants - - 5,612 -
TOTAL 154,049 150,135 171,301 160,139

Departmental Funding

 381. Deputy Damien English Information on Damien English Zoom on Damien English asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton if he will provide details of all funding programmes in his Department that community, voluntary and sporting organisations may apply to for funding; if he will provide a brief overview of each programme; the opening and closing dates of each programme; the minimum and maximum amounts of funding that may be applied for; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5386/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation funds only one programme open to the type of organisations in question, namely in the area of Consumer Support. It is an annual programme and funding is provided to support appropriate projects which enhance the capacity of organisations in the area of consumer protection. Funding of €47k was provided for in 2012.

EU Conventions

 382. Deputy Gerald Nash Information on Gerald Nash Zoom on Gerald Nash asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton his plans, in view of Italy's status as the first EU member to ratify ILO Convention 189 on Domestic Workers, to ratify the Convention during the EU Presidency; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5497/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton I welcomed the adoption of the Decent Work for Domestic Workers Convention and Recommendation at the International Labour Conference of the International Labour Organisation.

The issue of ratification by Ireland of Convention No. 189 on decent work for domestic workers is being considered in the context of our standard approach to the ratification of international instruments. Ireland does not ratify international Conventions until any necessary amendments to domestic legislation have been identified and effected. It is not for me to comment on the approach adopted by other Member States.

My officials have carried out an initial assessment of the implications of ratifying the International Labour Organisation’s Convention 189 on Domestic Workers. The Assessment includes an Article-by-Article examination of the extent to which domestic legislation provisions already provide for the rights and entitlements enunciated in each Article, as well as the extent to which any legislative amendments will be required. This assessment is being forwarded to the Attorney General’s Office for their examination.

I intend to progress the ratification of this Convention both nationally and at EU level during our Presidency.

It is important to note, however, that domestic workers are protected by virtue of the fact that the full suite of employment rights legislation, including that of redress for violations of their employment rights, apply to domestic workers in the same way as they apply to other categories of employees in Ireland. Also it is worth pointing out that NERA has carried out a programme of inspections involving Domestic Workers as well as continuing to respond to any complaints it receives from Domestic Workers.

A voluntary Code of Practice for Persons Employed in Other People’s Homes was developed under the Industrial Relations Act 1990. The Code sets out certain employment rights and practices for persons employed in other people’s homes and encourages good practice and compliance with the law in such employment situations. In any proceedings before a court, or a workplace relations dispute resolution body, a code of practice shall be admissible in evidence and any provision of the code which appears to the court, body or officer concerned to be relevant to any question arising in the proceedings shall be taken into account in determining that question.

Enterprise Support Services Provision

 383. Deputy Brendan Griffin Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton if he will introduce measures to support established businesses who are finding it difficult to compete with new businesses who are availing of enterprise supports grants; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [5598/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton The enterprise support agencies of my Department, in particular Enterprise Ireland and the County and City Enterprise Boards, provide a suite of programmes to assist companies to develop their enterprises and support both start up and established businesses. All companies eligible for support from the Agencies have the same access to State services regardless of their location or status.

While grant support is focussed in the main, on the manufacturing and internationally-traded sectors, for reasons of the potential for deadweight and displacement, many locally trading, established firms can avail of soft supports, such as mentoring and training, etc.

Since coming into office, this Government has demonstrated our determination to fundamentally address the challenge of supporting micro and small businesses. For example, we have introduced the Microenterprise Loan Fund and the Credit Guarantee Scheme to assist both new and established businesses in gaining access to much-needed credit. These Schemes are available to all businesses, including those trading locally.

I am currently in the process of reforming the national micro and small business support infrastructure by dissolving the City and County Enterprise Boards and establishing new Local Enterprise Offices that will operate from within Local Authorities, but with clear oversight by Enterprise Ireland. To this end, a new Microenterprise Division has been established within Enterprise Ireland and this will become the national Centre of Excellence for supporting micro and small businesses, benchmarked to international standards.

This fundamental reform offers the opportunity to revisit and refocus national policy in relation to the micro and small business sector with a view to ensuring that the State supports are properly targeted at that sector and that the LEOs become a “First Stop Shop” for micro and small businesses for the range of supports available across the system.

The LEOs will engage with all local businesses and will offer a range of soft supports to those that are locally trading with a viable business proposition, including help with applying for a Microfinance Loan. They will also be well positioned to assist in the early identification of start-ups with the best potential to move into the Enterprise Ireland portfolio.

Work Permit Criteria

 384. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton the position regarding a work permit in respect of a person (details supplied) in Dublin 11; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5629/13]

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Information on Richard Bruton Zoom on Richard Bruton An application for an employment permit was refused in this instance on 4th April 2012 as new employment permit applications are currently only considered for highly skilled, highly paid positions or for positions where there is an officially recognised scarcity of supply in relation to a particular qualification or occupation type. New and renewal applications may also be considered in respect of non-EEA nationals already legally resident in the State on a valid employment permit.

  The application did not appear to meet a number of criteria. Firstly, new employment permit applications are normally only considered where it is established that a minimum salary of €30,000 per annum is on offer based on a 39 hour week and where the position on offer is one of the occupations currently eligible for a new employment permit. The application indicated a salary below this level. Also, the occupation of machine worker listed in the application is one of the occupations considered ineligible for a new employment permit.

  Secondly, the Employment Permits Act 2006 requires that employment permits will not issue where more than 50% of the employees in the company are non EEA nationals. It appeared from the information submitted that more than 50% of employees in the company, at the time of application, were non EEA nationals.

  Finally, supporting documentation in respect of this application indicated that the proposed employee's immigration status at the time the application was made was not one which permitted them to enter full-time employment in the State.

  An appeal against this decision was received on 25th April 2012 and the decision was upheld on appeal on 3rd July 2012. If the circumstances that pertained to the application change in future in line with criteria governing employment permits then it is open to the applicant to submit an application afresh.


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