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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 449-464
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments
 Header Item Agriculture Schemes Eligibility
 Header Item Fish Quotas
 Header Item Fisheries Protection
 Header Item Departmental Funding
 Header Item Child Care Services Provision
 Header Item Adoption Legislation
 Header Item Child Care Qualifications
 Header Item Departmental Expenditure
 Header Item Foster Care Supports
 Header Item Child Poverty
 Header Item Departmental Expenditure
 Header Item National Lottery Funding Disbursement

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 824 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 82 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 449-464

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 449. Deputy James Bannon Information on James Bannon Zoom on James Bannon asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the number of applicants for disadvantaged areas payments in County Longford last year that had penalties imposed on them; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [53112/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 26 September 2012 and, to date, payments worth €210.1 million have issued nationally, to some 96,105 applicants. The details in respect of payments which have issued to farmers in County Longford to date are set out as follows.

County Longford.

Year Numbers applied Number paid Number of penalty cases
2012 2,388 2,299 187

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

 450. Deputy James Bannon Information on James Bannon Zoom on James Bannon asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the number of applicants for disadvantaged areas payments in County Westmeath last year that had penalties imposed on them; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [53113/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Payments under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme commenced, on schedule, on 26 September 2012 and, to date, payments worth €210.1 million have issued nationally, to some 96,105 applicants. The details in respect of payments which have issued to farmers in County Westmeath to date are set out as follows.

County Westmeath

Year Numbers applied Number paid Number of penalty cases
2012 2,648 2,524 156

Agriculture Schemes Eligibility

 451. Deputy Seán Kyne Information on Seán Kyne Zoom on Seán Kyne asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney his views on whether a case could be made under the rules of stacking of entitlement to allow for stacking in the case of reduced forage areas for lands previously in an agri-environment options scheme or for commonage or for Natura land in an acknowledgement that an interference in these lands to maintain forage areas is ordinarily not permitted; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [53146/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Consolidation of Entitlements was introduced in 2005 under the Single Payment Scheme and is provided for in Council Regulation (EC) No 73/2009.

  Consolidation (stacking) of entitlements means that in certain circumstances a farmer may give up to the National Reserve his/her own existing entitlements. The farmer is then re-allocated a lower number of entitlements with a higher net unit value.

  Farmers who satisfy certain conditions are eligible to apply to have their entitlements consolidated. The reduction in the number of hectares must have arisen because of one or more of the following circumstances:

- The acquisition of land by a public authority under a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) for non-agriculture.

- Lands leased in/rented in during all or part of the reference period (2000-2002) where the lease/rental agreement has expired or will expire and the land parcels in question are no longer available.

  Lands declared by farmers under the Single Payment Scheme, the Disadvantaged Areas Scheme and other Direct Payment Schemes must be eligible if these lands are to benefit from payment under one of more of these Schemes. Ineligible features such as houses, scrub, roads, rivers etc must be excluded. Consolidation may not be applied following such exclusions.

Fish Quotas

 452. Deputy John Browne Information on John Browne Zoom on John Browne asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the steps he has taken, if any, to promote the transfer of the total allowable catch between member states; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [53148/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Each year a number of swaps of fishing quotas and effort are arranged with other Member States. Swaps are normally initially proposed or organised by the fishing industry lead by the Federation of Irish Fishermen (FIF) and completed in a transaction between Member States. This may happen for a number of reasons. Firstly at the start of each year when the TAC and Quota Regulation is published, quotas for a number of fisheries which are of little interest to the Irish fleet are swapped for quotas for stocks which are of interest to our fleet.

Secondly throughout the year, the industry lead by the FIF works closely with the Department to recommend to me effective monthly management regimes for pressure stocks. In this monthly process the Industry recommends that some quotas or effort be swapped in order to maintain a supply of a particular quota for a stock of particular importance to the Irish fleet. In addition, where such proposals are received from other Member States, the FIF recommends the amounts and species to be swapped. These swaps are completed by the Department using the EU FIDES fishery database system.

The third reason for swaps is at the end of year where a quota has been exceeded and any opportunity to address this overfishing is used through completing swops with other Member States.

Fisheries Protection

 453. Deputy John Browne Information on John Browne Zoom on John Browne asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the steps he has taken to date to address the suspension of the fishing fleet in Kilmore, County Wexford; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53149/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney Operational issues in relation to sea fisheries control are a matter for the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA). I have asked the SFPA to respond directly to the Deputy.

Departmental Funding

 454. Deputy Billy Timmins Information on Billy Timmins Zoom on Billy Timmins asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney the amount of funding that his Department gives to Irish charities; the names of each organisation that receive funding; the amount of funding each organisation receives; the number that are open and transparent regarding salaries; and the steps he is taking to deal with non-disclosures.  [53544/13]

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Information on Simon Coveney Zoom on Simon Coveney My Department made ex gratia payments of €1.365 million in 2012 to 140 animal welfare organisations which are registered charities.

  My Department also made a contribution to Gorta in support of their 2012 World Food Day Conference of some €16,680.

- RECIPIENTS NAME AWARD
1 A Dog's Life, Glenmore, Co Kilkenny €2,000
2 Ainmhithe Animal Rescue, Ballina, Co Mayo €5,000
3 An Cat Dubh Sanctuary, Loughrea, Co Galway €2,000
4 Animal Heaven Animal Rescue (AHAR), Gneeveguilla, Co Kerry €10,000
5 Animal Help Net Kerry, C/o Beechlawn, Tralee, Co Kerry €2,000
6 Animal Magic T/A Rosie Campbell, Kilmallock, Co. Limerick €6,000
7 Animal Rescue Skibbereen, Co Cork €10,000
8 Animal Trust Fund, Passage East, Co Waterford €1,000
9 Animals in Need, Donegal Town, Co Donegal €15,000
10 Athlone Animal Welfare, Athlone, Co Westmeath €4,000
11 Athlone, West Midlands SPCA, Feevaghmore, Co Roscommon €3,000
12 Audrey Quinn, " Fur Babies ", Edenderry, Co. Offaly €2,000
13 Avalon Greyhound Sanctuary Pro Animale Ireland Ltd, Co. Galway €6,000
14 Bilberry Goat Heritage Trust, Rockmount, Co. Waterford €4,000
15 *Burren Animal Rescue, Tubber, Co Clare €1,500
16 Carrick Dog Shelter, Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan €11,000
17 Cat and Dog Protection Association, Dublin 1 €15,000
18 Cat Concern Wicklow, Greystones, Co Wicklow €2,000
19 Cats Aid, C/O " Murrisk ", Mulhuddart, Dublin 15 €8,000
20 Cavan SPCA, Co. Cavan €21,000
21 Chippers Sanctuary, Gorey, Co. Wexford €2,000
22 Clare SPCA, Clonloghan, Newmarket-on-Fergus, Co. Clare €10,000
23 Clifden Animal Rescue, Co Galway €2,000
24 Clondalkin Animal Aid Ltd, Clondalkin, Dublin 22 €4,000
25 Collon Animal Sanctuary, Collon, Co. Louth €9,000
26 *Community Cats Network, Kilbrittain, Co Cork €1,000
27 Cork Animal Care Society, Kilmichael, Co Cork €4,000
28 Cork Cat Action Trust , Blackrock, Co Cork €9,000
29 Cork SPCA, Mahon, Co. Cork €10,000
30 Cork Dog Action Welfare Group Ltd (DAWG), Macroom, Co Cork €8,000
31 Cottage Rescue, Cashel , County Tipperary €6,000
32 Cry for Help Cattery, Mullingar Co. Westmeath €5,000
33 Deise Animal Sanctuary, Ballymacarbry, Co Waterford €4,000
34 Dog Rescue Ireland, The Ward, Co Dublin €4,500
35 Dogs Aid Animal Sanctuary, Meaktown, Co Dublin €5,000
36 Dogs in Distress, Ash Hill, Dunboyne, Co Meath €6,000
37 Donegal Donkey Sanctuary, Castledooey, Raphoe, Co Donegal €2,000
38 Dr. Homes Moate Dog Rescue, Moate, Co Westmeath €5,000
39 Drogheda Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 159, Drogheda Co. Louth €15,000
40 Dublin Animal Rescue Group, Dublin 9 €2,500
41 Dublin SPCA (Dogs & Cats Home), Rathfarnham, Dublin 16 €150,000
42 Dundalk Dog Rescue, Castlebellingham, Co. Louth €5,000
43 Dungarvan SPCA Rescue Kennels, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford €10,000
44 East Galway Animal Rescue, Loughrea, Co. Galway €4,000
45 Enniscorthy SPCA , Enniscorthy Co. Wexford €8,000
46 Fairy Glen Community Animal Sanctuary, Co. Roscommon €8,000
47 *Fellenberg Foundation Irl Ltd, Woodford, Co Galway €1,000
48 Fingal SPCA, Portrane, Co Dublin €2,000
49 *Forgotten Horses Ireland, , Kilcolgan, Co Galway €1,000
50 Friends for Wildlife, Letterfrack, Co. Galway €2,000
51 Friends of Animals, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath €4,000
52 Galway and Claddagh Swan Rescue, Knocknacarra, Galway €3,000
53 Galway Cat Rescue, Knocknacarra, Galway €2,000
54 Galway SPCA, St. Augustine’s Street , Galway €26,000
55 *Great Hounds in Need, Clonmel, Co Tipperary €1,000
56 Hollys Horse Haven, Omeath, Co Louth €7,000
57 Homes for Unwanted Greyhounds Beaufort, Co. Kerry €3,500
58 *Hungry Horse Outside Ltd, Newtownforbes, Co Longford €1,000
59 Inistioge Puppy Rescue, Inistioge, Co. Kilkenny €7,000
60 *Irish Equine Welfare, Ardnacrusha, Co Clare €1,500
61 Irish Horse Protection League, Blessington Co. Wicklow €5,000
62 Irish Horse Welfare Trust, Arklow, Co. Wicklow €35,000
63 Irish Raptor Research Centre (Eagles Flying), Ballymote, Co Sligo €6,000
64 Irish Red Grouse Association, Oakpark Avenue, Carlow €2,000
65 Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, , Kilrush, Co Clare €1,500
66 ISPCA (Head Office), Derryglogher Lodge, Co. Longford €150,000
67 ISPCA Carlow Branch, Tullow, Co Carlow €3,500
68 ISPCA Victor Dowling, Mallow, Co. Cork €10,000
69 Joan's A.R.C, Glangevlin, Co Cavan €4,000
70 *Kathleen Barrett, Athea, Co Limerick €1,000
71 *Kath's Kitty Corner, , Ballymote, Co Sligo €1,000
72 Kerry SPCA, Rackett Lane, Tralee, Co. Kerry €6,000
73 Kildare & West Wicklow SPCA, Kilcullen , Co. Kildare €11,000
74 Kilkenny SPCA, Unit 39, Hebron Road, Kilkenny €8,000
75 KLAWS, Kenmare, Co. Kerry €2,000
76 Laois SPCA, Portlaoise, Co Laois €10,000
77 Last Hope Animal Charity, Navan, Co Meath €6,000
78 Leitrim Animal Welfare Centre Ltd, Drumkeeran, Co. Leitrim €15,000
79 Littlehill Animal Sanctuary, Ballymore Eustace, Co. Kildare €1,000
80 *Lilys Dog Rescue, Shercock, Co Cavan €1,000
81 Limerick Animal Welfare Ltd, Greystones, Limerick €28,000
82 *Limerick Feral Cat, Corbally, Limerick €1,000
83 Limerick SPCA, The Secretary, Hyde Road Limerick €10,000
84 Longford SPCA , No.2 Market Square, Longford €15,000
85 Louth SPCA Ltd , Dundalk, Co. Louth €15,000
86 MADRA , Connemara Kennels, Co Galway €3,000
87 *Mallow Animal Rescue, Mallow, Co Cork €1,000
88 Mayo Animal Welfare, Westport, Co. Mayo €2,500
89 Mayo SPCA Ltd, Ballyhaunis, Co. Mayo €7,000
90 Meath SPCA, Duleek, Co Meath €9,000
91 *Mo Chara Animal Rescue Centre Ltd, Thurles, Co Tipperary €6,000
92 Monaghan SPCA, Emyvale, Co. Monaghan €18,000
93 Monkey Sanctuary Ireland Ltd, Rathdrum, Co. Wicklow €2,000
94 Munster Lost and Found Pet Helpline, Ballinhassig, Co Cork €4,000
95 National Exotic Animal Sanctuary, Ballivor, Co. Meath €5,000
96 New Ross SPCA, Foulksmills, Co. Wexford €10,000
97 North County Dublin SPCA, Drumcondra, Dublin 9 €15,000
98 North West Pet Protection Ltd./ Donegal Pet Rescue, Co. Donegal €15,000
99 North West SPCA Ltd, Carrowreagh, Ballina, Co. Mayo €19,000
100 North Wexford SPCA, Parkville 4 Glen Courtown, Co. Wexford €14,000
101 Offaly SPCA Ltd, 5 Arden Vale,Tullamore, Co. Offaly €14,000
102 Pauline's Rescue, Lauragh, Milford, Charleville, Co Cork €9,000
103 Paw Pourri Animal Rescue, Cronin's Yard, Ennis, Co Clare €1,500
104 PAWS Animal Rescue, Mullinahone, Co Tipperary €20,000
105 Petwatch Ltd, 132 Rialto Cottages, Dublin 8 €4,500
106 *Precious Paws Animal Sanctuary, Gurteen, Co Sligo €1,000
107 *Red's Sanctuary, Mountain View, Kiltimagh, Co Mayo €1,000
108 Remi le Mahieu T/A Animal Sanctuary Hubasha, (ASH), Co. Wicklow €15,000
109 Renvyle Cat and Dog Rescue, Connemara, Co Galway €2,000
110 Roscommon SPCA , P.O. Box 10, Castlerea, Co Roscommon €10,000
111 Roscrea SPCA, Rosemount House Roscrea Co. Tipperary €11,000
112 Rover Rescue, Ennis Co Clare €3,000
113 Rural Animal Welfare Resources (RAWR), Bantry, Co Cork €9,000
114 Sathya Sai Sanctuary, Trust for Nature, Castlebaldwin, Co. Sligo €9,000
115 Second Chance Animal Rescue Ltd, Shannon, Co Clare €7,000
116 Sligo Dog Welfare Services, Drumcliff, Co. Sligo €2,000
117 South East Animal Rescue, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford €3,000
118 *South Tipperary Dog Rescue, Farranacliffe, Co Tipperary €1,000
119 St Francis Dispensary for Sick and Injured Animals, Inchicore, Dublin 8 €8,000
120 Sylvia Muhlbachler, Shean, Edenderry, Co Offaly €2,500
121 *Taffy's Friends , Ballinlough, Co Roscommon €1,000
122 The Daisy Fund , Tralee, Co Kerry €1,000
123 The Donkey Sanctuary, Mallow, Co. Cork €60,000
124 The Equus Foundation, Naas Co Kildare €3,000
125 The Inner City Cat Rescue Group, Ballybough, Dublin 3 €2,500
126 The Irish Blue Cross, Inchicore , Dublin 8 €57,000
127 The Sunset Appeal, "Panwa", NewRoss , Co. Wexford €2,000
128 Tipp Friends of Animals SPCA , Nenagh , Co. Tipperary €4,000
129 Tipperary SPCA, Savannah House, Clonmel Co. Tipperary €10,000
130 Tipp-Off Animal Rescue, Birr, Co. Offaly €10,000
131 Traveller Animal Welfare, Rathdrum, Co Wicklow €3,000
132 Waterford Animal Welfare, Tramore, Co Waterford €10,000
133 Waterford SPCA , Yellow Road, Co Waterford €15,000
134 West Cork Animal Welfare Group, Clonakilty , Co. Cork €10,000
135 Westmeath SPCA, Killucan, Co. Westmeath €10,000
136 Westown Animal Shelter, Naas, Co. Kildare €4,000
137 Wexford SPCA, Distillery Road, Co Wexford €28,000
138 Whiskers New Park Animal Sanctuary , Leatra, Williamstown, Co Galway €4,000
139 *Wicklow Cats, 15 Broudlough View, Greenhill Road, Wicklow €1,000
140 Wicklow SPCA, Ballygannon Mor, Rathdrum, Co. Wicklow €26,000
- - €1,365,000
*   First time applicants

Child Care Services Provision

 455. Deputy Brendan Ryan Information on Brendan Ryan Zoom on Brendan Ryan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald the future plans for a unit (details supplied) in County Dublin; if the unit will remain open in its current form; if not, the changes that will be made; the rationale behind such planned changes; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [52847/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald I have been advised by the HSE that Crannóg Nua in Portrane, Co. Dublin will cease providing High Support services in May 2014 once the current residents complete their interventions and move on to their next placements. Crannóg Nua will then undergo a period of refurbishment and enhancement in order to bring the standard of the current facilities up to the level of security required to provide Special Care services from that location. In addition, a further building is being added.

The HSE has also advised that Children and Family Services are committed to designing and developing a comprehensive continuum of care services to meet the divergent and complex needs of all children in care. In 2012, Children and Family Services initiated an in depth review of all residential care services for children and young people. This review will assist in mapping and reinforcing the various stages along the continuum of care provision in Children and Family Services as well as identifying where maps may exist. A National Director of Residential Services is now in post to take the review forward and ensure the strategic development of such services with all necessary allied supports necessary.

Adoption Legislation

 456. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald Information on Mary Lou McDonald Zoom on Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald if she intends to amend the Adoption Act 2010; and if these amendments will be published before the end of the current year.  [52482/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald The Adoption Act, 2010, which entered into force on 1 November 2010, gives force of law to the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption. The Act was written against the backdrop of the of the Hague Convention and a commitment to improving standards outlined in the Convention. The Hague principles of subsidiarity, support for birth families, free and informed consent for birth parents, and international adoption as a resource for the permanent care of children, are a means for improving standards in intercountry adoption and mitigating against some of the risks inherent in intercountry adoption.

The Adoption Act 2010 has been in operation for nearly three years now. Since the implementation of the Act, as is often the case with complex legislation, issues have arisen in relation to the operation of the Act. There are also more general policy questions around the nature of our adoption regime. In the circumstances I think it is timely to consider a review of adoption. Given the range and complexity of the issues this will require a preliminary examination following which decisions will be made on the extent and time scale for the review. I do not know at this stage if proposals for legislative change will emerge from this review or the nature of such proposals. Based upon the many domestic and international legal aspects to adoption the issue of further legislative development will certainly be considered. This review will inform future operational and legislative considerations regarding the Adoption Act 2010.

Child Care Qualifications

 457. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald the selection criteria that was used when awarding a €900,000 training fund; the number of training agencies that were approached regarding this fund; if a cost benefit analysis was carried out on the successful agencies; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [52627/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald As part of my Pre-School Quality Agenda, I will be introducing new qualification requirements for childcare workers. All staff caring for children in a pre-school service will be subject to a minimum qualification requirement of FETAC Level 5, while pre-school leaders delivering the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) programme will require a Level 6 qualification. These requirements will come into effect from September 2014 for new services, and from September 2015 for existing services.

In light of these timeframes, my Department has sought to work with the childcare sector to accelerate the process for training and upskilling its staff and improving the quality of care delivered to children. It is considered that, to achieve the required qualifications in the limited timescale available, staff in the childcare sector, who are on modest pay, should not have to pay the full cost of undergoing accredited training from their own resources.

For 2014 a learner fund totalling €1.5 million will be made available through the CCCs so that existing staff can choose a suitable training provider to upskill to Level 5 or 6 as applicable.

Early Childhood Ireland (ECI), which is the largest of the voluntary childcare organisations funded by my Department, and the Border Counties Childcare Network (BCCN), which provides quality supports including training in the Border counties area, have been asked as part of their 2013 work plan to offer additional training to the existing childcare workforce in relevant training modules at FETAC Levels 5 and 6. Additional grant funding will be made available to ECI and the BCCN in 2013 to provide for this.

Both ECI and BCCN submitted proposals to my Department outlining their plans to provide the increased level of training support to the childcare sector in line with their roles as voluntary childcare organisations.

242 childcare workers are currently participating in two FETAC Level 5 and ten FETAC Level 6 training modules provided by ECI. A further 278 childcare workers will commence training across fifteen courses (four Level 5 and eleven Level 6), in January 2014, with another 94 commencing training across five courses (one level 5 and four level 6) in February 2014. Some of the training courses are being delivered online, with the remainder being delivered face-to-face.

BCCN has identified approximately 60 childcare practitioners who will avail of their training programme with some of these commencing training as early as next week. The training modules for remaining participants will commence in January 2014.

Departmental Expenditure

 458. Deputy Peadar Tóibín Information on Peadar Tóibín Zoom on Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald if she will provide a breakdown of the annual infrastructure and capital expenditure by her Department on a regional basis and a county basis over the past five years.  [52795/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald The information sought by the Deputy is currently being collated and I will provide the information directly to the Deputy later this week.

Foster Care Supports

 459. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald further to Parliamentary Question No. 385 of 3 December 2013, if statistics will be collected on the nature and extent of training received by relative foster carers before children are placed with them; the number of children placed with relative carers on an emergency basis in the years 2012 and to date in 2013 before approval was provided by a foster care committee.  [52863/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald The information requested by the Deputy has been sought from the HSE and I will be in further contact with the Deputy later this week.

Child Poverty

 460. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald the reason an application from a group (details supplied) was not put forward to the design stage for the ABC programme - area based response to child poverty funding; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [52877/13]

 461. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald the reason the list of successful applicants approved for design stage as part of the ABC programme - area based response to child poverty funding does not include rural areas; her plans for rural children and their families; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [52878/13]

 462. Deputy Charlie McConalogue Information on Charlie McConalogue Zoom on Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald the reason a county (details supplied) was not considered one of the most disadvantaged areas when the proposals for the ABC programme were short-listed for design stage; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [52879/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald I propose to take Questions Nos. 460 to 462, inclusive, together.

  On 27 November last, with my colleague the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Mr. Eamon Gilmore T.D., I announced that an additional nine areas have been selected to enter the design stage of the Area Based Childhood (ABC) Programme 2013-2016, in line with a key Programme for Government commitment.

  This brings the total number of areas that will participate in the ABC programme to 13, as three existing projects which participated in a forerunner Prevention and Early Intervention Programme (PEIP) in Tallaght, Ballymun and Darndale were approved for entry earlier this year. In addition, a further project, linked to the existing ‘Preparing for Life’ project in Darndale, is also being included.

  The evaluation process was undertaken by a Working Group of the Project Team which was set up in February of this year to oversee the implementation of the new programme. The Project Team is chaired by my Department and includes representatives from seven other Government Departments, our co-funders The Atlantic Philanthropies as well as two organisations, Pobal and the Centre for Effective Services, which have been designated to manage the programme on behalf of my Department.

The application and evaluation process was concerned with ensuring that the ABC Programme focused on disadvantaged areas whether rural or urban.   The term "area" was defined broadly as ‘A geographical territory, in which the resident population identifies with each other as a community on the basis of natural boundaries, common history or experience or other factors .'. This was intended to encourage consortia from a wide range of areas to apply to the new programme.

  Applications had to prove that children in their target area were particularly disadvantaged. The highest ranking criterion included in the application guidelines was Evidence of Need. It was concerned with high levels of poor outcomes for children in the target areas. 40% of the overall scoring weight was assigned to this criterion. The other criteria were Quality of the Proposal (30% of overall scoring weight), Additionality & Sustainability (20% of the overall scoring weight) and Understanding and Capturing Outcomes (10% of overall scoring weight).

  50 applications were received from consortia wishing to participate in the Area Based Childhood (ABC) Programme, including three from the existing PEIP participants which were evaluated first and approved for entry to the programme earlier this year. The remaining 47 proposals were then evaluated against the programme criteria and nine were selected. These did not include the application referred to by the Deputy as it did not score sufficiently highly against the programme criteria to be invited to proceed at this point to the next stage of development and design work. With 50 proposals received from among the most disadvantaged areas in the State, it was a very competitive process.

  I would like to thank the Donegal consortium for its application to participate in the ABC programme and for its commitment to evidence-based programmes and early intervention and prevention services for children and families.

Departmental Expenditure

 463. Deputy Kevin Humphreys Information on Kevin Humphreys Zoom on Kevin Humphreys asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald of the €11 million in capital spending recorded as not spent under the expenditure profile at end November in the most recent analysis of gross voted expenditure Exchequer figures, the reason for the underspend; if he will provide a breakdown of the capital projects or outlays that have not commenced as yet as per the profile; if any of the total €107.2 million in total capital carryover in Government for 2012 relates to her Department; the amount of same; if it has been spent; on what it has been spent; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [52949/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald A total of €25.76m in capital funding is available to my Department for 2013 and over 80% of this relates to the development of the National Children's Detention facility at Oberstown in Co. Dublin.

When profiling this expenditure at the start of this year, it was anticipated that the building work would begin earlier than has actually been the case. This was primarily due to detailed contractual discussions and negotiations and I am happy to confirm that building work has now started. However, as a result of these timing issues, the cash flow for the project has been adjusted and it is now anticipated that only €10m will be expended in 2013 as opposed to the original estimate of over €20m. It is still expected that 3 new units will be delivered by the 3rd quarter in 2014 to prioritise the accommodation of 17 year old boys currently the responsibility of the Irish Prison Service. The remaining units, to replace existing buildings, will be delivered by the 3rd quarter 2015. The overall project cost will not be impacted on by this cash flow adjustment with the balance of overall funding now being required in 2014 and 2015 to meet contractual commitments.

The Deputy might also note that there was no carryover of 2012 funds to the Vote of my Department for capital projects.

National Lottery Funding Disbursement

 464. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald Information on Mary Lou McDonald Zoom on Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald the position regarding the application for national lottery funding in respect of an organisation (details supplied) and when they may expect a decision.  [52972/13]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald My Department has a funding provision of €500,000 in respect of National Lottery Funding for 2013 and the closing date for applications was the 18th October 2013. Over 600 applications, totalling over €7.5m, were received and the organisation to which the Deputy refers is one of these applications. As the volume of applications far exceeds the available resources it may not be possible to assist all applications. The assessment process is ongoing and all applicants will be informed of the outcome as soon as final decisions have been made.


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