Houses of the Oireachtas

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

Go to oireachtas.ie

 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 91 - 110
 Header Item Redundancy Payments
 Header Item Rent Supplement Scheme Data
 Header Item Disability Allowance Eligibility
 Header Item Domiciliary Care Allowance Applications
 Header Item Invalidity Pension Appeals
 Header Item State Pension (Contributory) Eligibility
 Header Item National Parks Projects
 Header Item National Library
 Header Item Broadband Service Speeds
 Header Item Tyre Labelling
 Header Item Rental Accommodation Scheme Administration
 Header Item Rental Accommodation Scheme Expenditure
 Header Item Local and Community Development Programme Planning
 Header Item Local and Community Development Programme Planning

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 845 No. 2

First Page Previous Page Page of 77 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 91 - 110

Redundancy Payments

 91. Deputy James Bannon Information on James Bannon Zoom on James Bannon asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if she will clarify a situation in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Longford in respect of employment law and entitlements; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27553/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton Section 12 of the Redundancy Payments Act 1967, as amended, provides that where an employee has been in a lay-off situation or on short-time for 4 consecutive weeks or more, or for six weeks in the last 13 weeks, he/she may give his/her employer notice, in writing, of his/her intention to claim a statutory redundancy payment. Short-time arises where there is a reduction in the weekly earnings to less than half the normal weekly earnings or a reduction in the hours worked to less than half the normal weekly working hours. Where a full-time working employee, i.e., an employee working 40 hours per week, is put on a three or four day week by his/her employer such an employee is considered to be on reduced working hours. There is no provision under the aforementioned Act for an employee on reduced hours to give notice to his/her employer of his/her intention to claim a statutory redundancy payment. From the information provided by the Deputy it would appear that the person concerned may be an employee on reduced working hours.

  Question No. 92 answered with Question No. 90.

Rent Supplement Scheme Data

 93. Deputy Aodhán Ó Ríordáin Information on Aodhán Ó Ríordáin Zoom on Aodhán Ó Ríordáin asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if she will provide in tabular form the number of persons currently in receipt of rent allowance broken down by county. [27427/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The Government has provided over €344 million for the rent supplement scheme in 2014, the purpose of which is to provide short-term income support to assist with reasonable accommodation costs of eligible people living in private rented accommodation who are unable to provide for their accommodation costs from their own resources. There are currently approximately 76,000 customers in receipt of rent supplement. The tabular statement provides the detail of the number of recipients on a county basis at the end of May 2014.

  Tabular Statement - Rent Supplement Recipients by County – May 2014

CountyRecipients
CARLOW1,088
CAVAN424
CLARE1,464
CORK8,736
DONEGAL1,948
DUBLIN28,431
GALWAY3,794
KERRY1,845
KILDARE3,842
KILKENNY1,204
LAOIS1,037
LEITRIM344
LIMERICK2,830
LONGFORD465
LOUTH2,361
MAYO1,723
MEATH1,855
MONAGHAN375
OFFALY1,085
ROSCOMMON711
SLIGO485
TIPPERARY2,019
WATERFORD1,484
WESTMEATH1,540
WEXFORD2,920
WICKLOW2,227
Total76,237

Disability Allowance Eligibility

 94. Deputy Ciara Conway Information on Ciara Conway Zoom on Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if her attention has been drawn to the difficulties being faced by children with additional needs, having reached the age of 16 years and having been assessed as having an intellectual disability, to receive disability allowance; if she will examine correspondence (details supplied) and if she will advise as to the options available to persons in this situation and her views on plans to address this anomaly; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27434/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton Disability allowance (DA) is a payment for persons between the ages of 16 and 66 with a specified disability which is expected to last at least 1 year who, by reason of that disability, are substantially restricted in undertaking work suitable to their age, qualifications and experience. Applicants must also satisfy a means test and be habitually resident in the State. The application form for DA collects all the relevant information necessary to determine the eligibility of an applicant in relation to his/her identity, means, habitual residence and medical condition. Application forms for all Departmental schemes are regularly reviewed and updated to reflect any changes in conditionality and to improve clarity.

Domiciliary care allowance (DCA) is a payment made to parents/guardians of certain children up to the age of 16 years who, by reason of a disability, require care substantially in excess of a child of similar age without a disability. It is not means tested. The conditions for receipt of these payments differ significantly; DA reflects a work focus ‘substantially restricted in undertaking work suitable to their age, qualifications and experience’ and DCA reflects a care condition, ‘require care substantially in excess of a child of similar age without a disability’.

Medical eligibility for DA is determined by a deciding officer (DO). The Department employs a team of doctors, called medical assessors (MAs) to provide advice to DOs in relation to medical eligibility for DA and other medical-related schemes. The MAs are fully qualified and experienced medical practitioners who must have at least 6 years satisfactory experience in the practice of medicine since registration with the Medical Council. Many of the MAs have specialist post-graduate qualifications and all have experience/training in Human Disability Evaluation.

Applicants for DA are required to provide medical and other evidence from their own doctor(s) or other therapists etc. to demonstrate their eligibility. In forming his/her opinion, the MA does not question the applicant’s diagnosis/es rather s/he evaluates, based on the evidence provided, to what extent the applicant’s disability restricts his/her employment potential by reference to the severity and expected duration of the disability and any other relevant factors.

To assist the DO to make a quality decision on a DA application and to avoid unnecessary delay it is important that the applicant submits at the outset good quality information in support of his/her claim. It is often not until an applicant is found to be medically ineligible that they send in full and comprehensive information on their medical circumstances for consideration. If a person is found to be ineligible for DA, whether for medical, means or habitual residence reasons, it is open to them to request a review of that decision with or without the submission of additional supporting information and, in addition, they have a statutory right to appeal the decision to the Social Welfare Appeals Office.

As at the end of May 2014, there were approximately 40 DA applications for DA from persons under 17 years awaiting decision.

Domiciliary Care Allowance Applications

 95. Deputy Jim Daly Information on Jim Daly Zoom on Jim Daly asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the position regarding a social welfare application in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [27455/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton An application for domiciliary care allowance was received on the 24th March 2014. The application was not allowed as it was considered that the child does not meet the eligibility criteria for the allowance. A decision letter issued to the person concerned on 23 June 2014 advising of this decision. In the case of an application which is refused on medical grounds the applicant may submit additional information and/or ask for the decision to be reviewed, or they may appeal the decision directly to the Social Welfare Appeals Office within twenty one days.

Invalidity Pension Appeals

 96. Deputy Michael Creed Information on Michael Creed Zoom on Michael Creed asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if a decision has been made on an invalidity pension appeal in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Cork; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27463/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton I am advised by the Social Welfare Appeals Office that an Appeals Officer, having fully considered all of the available evidence, decided to disallow the appeal of the person concerned by way of a summary decision. Notification of the Appeals Officer’s decision issued to the person concerned on 16 June 2013. However, in light of the Deputy’s request for an oral hearing of this case the file has been recalled from the Department and will be referred back to the Appeals Officer for consideration of this request. The Social Welfare Appeals Office functions independently of the Minister for Social Protection and of the Department and is responsible for determining appeals against decisions in relation to social welfare entitlements.

State Pension (Contributory) Eligibility

 97. Deputy Sean Fleming Information on Seán Fleming Zoom on Seán Fleming asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton in respect of the State pension transition that a person must have at least a yearly average of 24 contributions, the previous yearly average that existed prior to this change; when that change was made; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27471/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The Social Welfare and Pensions Act 2011 provides that State pension age will be increased gradually to 68 years. This began in January 2014 with the abolition of the State pension (transition) available at 65, thereby standardising State pension age for all at 66 years. Claims to the State pension (transition) are therefore made in respect of people who turned 65 before 1 January 2014.

The State pension (transition) was introduced in 1970 when it was known as the retirement pension. It was designed to bridge the gap between the standard social welfare pension age, which at that time was 70 years of age, and retirement age. Over time, the age for State pension (contributory) was reduced to 66 years. When the retirement pension was introduced, the minimum yearly average of contributions paid or credited required was 26. This was reduced to 24 contributions from 5 October 1972, and this was the minimum record required for people who are currently in receipt of the payment.

  Question No. 98 withdrawn.

National Parks Projects

 99. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Jimmy Deenihan Zoom on Jimmy Deenihan if he will put a three year plan in place in Killarney National Park to re-establish control over the areas cleared of Rhododendron by groundwork volunteers since 1981. [27530/14]

 101. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Jimmy Deenihan Zoom on Jimmy Deenihan if he will reintroduce the line method of systematically checking the woods in Killarney National Park, County Kerry, to locate all rhododendron plants for removal, thereby ensuring thoroughness. [27590/14]

 102. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Jimmy Deenihan Zoom on Jimmy Deenihan when dealing with Rhododendrons in Killarney National Park, County Kerry if he will register seed-source plants before removal in order to allow an accurate return visit to uproot all new plants. [27591/14]

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Jimmy Deenihan): Information on Jimmy Deenihan Zoom on Jimmy Deenihan I propose to take Questions Nos. 99, 101 and 102 together.

  I refer to my reply to Question No. 11 of 11 June 2014, which sets out my Department's overall approach to Rhododendron clearance in Killarney National Park. The focus of the Rhododendron management programme and the control methods used are regularly reviewed and refined to respond to the dynamic and vigorous nature of the plant in order to mitigate its impact at different locations throughout the Park. While a wide range of control methods are considered for this purpose, those chosen are generally selected on the basis of optimum efficacy, having regard to the most effective use of available resources. My Department will continue to keep its approach to this issue under review.

National Library

 100. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Jimmy Deenihan Zoom on Jimmy Deenihan when the post of director of the National Library of Ireland will be filled. [27560/14]

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Jimmy Deenihan): Information on Jimmy Deenihan Zoom on Jimmy Deenihan The post of Director of the National Library was advertised in January of this year in the Public Appointments Service. Candidates were interviewed in April and no candidate was recommended to the Board of the National Library for appointment to the post. The post is currently being filled on an Acting basis by the senior Keeper in the National Library. It is understood that consideration is being given by the Board of the National Library to re-advertising the post later in the year.

  Questions Nos. 101 and 102 answered with Question No. 99.

Broadband Service Speeds

 103. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte if his attention has been drawn to the poor standard and quality of broadband and mobile phone technology in many areas throughout the country; the action taken or proposed to address the situation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27453/14]

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (Deputy Pat Rabbitte): Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte Since market liberalisation, the provision of telecommunications services, including broadband services are delivered in the first instance through private sector operators who operate in a fully liberalised market, regulated by the independent regulator, the Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg). The market has developed into a well-regulated market, supporting a multiplicity of commercial operators, providing services over a diverse range of technology platforms. Details of broadband services available in each County can be found on a number of websites, including the websites of individual commercial operators.

  In terms of the quality of mobile coverage throughout the country, licences issued by ComReg require Mobile Network Operators to provide a minimum level of national population coverage. There are no Universal Service Obligations attached to mobile phone licences. The design of the network is a matter entirely for the operator concerned although operators tend to exceed their minimum coverage requirements for commercial reasons. However, given that mobile telephone services are a radio based technology, services can be affected by several factors including topography, the capacity of the network and more generally the quality of access customers have to mobile telephone antennas.

  ComReg's 2012 multiband spectrum auction has released additional radio spectrum previously unavailable for mobile operators. This is expected to further improve the coverage and quality of mobile service throughout the country. Since the auction, three mobile operators have launched 4G high speed mobile broadband services and rollout is continuing. There has also been continued investment by all operators in enhancing and broadening 3G services and network improvements.

  I would also point out that Local Authorities have a strong role to play in facilitating the roll-out of the necessary telecommunications infrastructure to help enable service availability throughout the country. This is a matter which has been raised by telecommunications services providers and is reflected in the Government's National Broadband Plan, which commits to addressing barriers to deployment of services. The Plan, which I published in August 2012, aims to radically change the broadband landscape in Ireland by ensuring that high speed broadband is available to all citizens and businesses. This will be achieved by providing:-

  - a policy and regulatory framework that assists in accelerating and incentivising commercial investment; and

  - a State-led intervention for areas where it is not commercial for the market to invest.

  Since publication of the Plan, investments by the commercial sector are underway and in some instances have been accelerated in both fixed line and wireless high speed broadband services. Commercial operators combined have either invested, or committed to invest, over €2 billion in their Irish networks, delivering high speed broadband to homes and businesses.

  As a result of this accelerated investment the addressable area required by the State-led intervention has been reduced by 30% since the National Broadband Plan was launched. While the commercial developments are welcome the acceleration of investment is largely contained to cities and towns. Consequently, the speeds that are available in these areas are demonstrably better than those that are available in more rural areas.

  On 25 April last, I signalled the Government's commitment to a major telecommunications network build-out to rural Ireland, with fibre as the foundation of its investment, as part of the State-led intervention under the National Broadband Plan. This commitment is a clear expression of Government’s determination to address the connectivity challenge in rural Ireland in a meaningful and sustainable way.

  Central to the strategy will be a fibre build-out to locations in every county in the State identified as having no existing or planned enabling fibre network. It is intended that the fibre will be delivered directly to access points for homes and businesses, where service providers can utilise the fibre to provide high speed services to end users. The fibre build out will be part of an end-to-end strategy that will address all parts of Ireland that cannot access commercial high speed broadband services.

  A comprehensive mapping exercise is underway in my Department which will identify those areas that will require a State intervention. I have published a county-by-county list of towns and villages which have already been identified for a fibre build-out. This list is available on my Department's website, www.dcenr.gov.ie. This is an indicative list and is subject to the completion of the mapping exercise. Further locations may be identified as this process continues. Similarly, it may be determined that some locations on the list will be addressed by the commercial sector and will therefore not require State intervention. I expect that this mapping exercise will be concluded in the autumn. I would point out that the EU Commission’s guidelines on State aid for high speed broadband infrastructure preclude Member States from intervening in regions in which private investors have demonstrated plans to roll out their own infrastructure within the following three years.

  In tandem with the completion of the mapping exercise, intensive design and planning work is ongoing in my Department with a view to producing a detailed end to end strategy for the State led intervention. It is my intention to conduct a full public consultation on the outcome of the mapping process and the proposed strategy. EU State aid clearance will also be required for the intervention once finalised. This will be followed by a detailed procurement process with a view to commencing construction of the fibre network and provision of services in identified areas as quickly as possible.

Tyre Labelling

 104. Deputy Ciara Conway Information on Ciara Conway Zoom on Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte if he will improve tyre labelling in view of the fact that there is no independent body assessing each tyre and awarding the rating; his plans to establish such a body. [27500/14]

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (Deputy Pat Rabbitte): Information on Pat Rabbitte Zoom on Pat Rabbitte The Tyre Labelling Regulations (S.I. 342 of 2012) set out the national rules for implementing Regulation (EC) No. 1222/2009 on the labelling of tyres. These regulations are in place to ensure consumers are provided with information on the fuel efficiency, wet grip and external rolling noise of the tyre. This information is provided in the form of a label which, since 1 November 2012, must be displayed on or in close proximity to the tyre at the point of sale.

Under the Regulations, it is the responsibility of the tyre supplier (manufacturer or EU importer) to produce a label in the correct format for each tyre. Technical documentation must also be produced for the tyre to verify the accuracy of the information contained in the label for inspection purposes. No independent assessment is required for the production of the label. Compliance with the Tyre Labelling Regulations is monitored by national Market Surveillance Authorities (MSAs) which, for the purposes of tyre labelling, is located in my Department . My Department's market surveillance programme for 2014 – 2015, which also includes the Ecodesign and Energy Labelling Regulations, has been published in Ireland’s biennial national market surveillance programme compiled by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. Through this programme, which includes an awareness, inspection, testing and enforcement regime, my Department is committed to ensuring that levels of compliance improve.

Promoting and raising awareness, especially among retailers and distributors, is essential to ensuring compliance and in June 2013 my Department wrote to tyre suppliers and distributors informing them of their responsibilities. A training programme has also been put in place whereby, in advance of a formal inspection, each retailer receives a pre-inspection visit by an Authorised Officer to provide advice and assist them in meeting their obligations. We have also engaged the assistance of the Irish Tyre Industry Association. My Department's market surveillance programme will see 200 inspections of retail outlets carried out and a number of risk-based testing campaigns completed. It is expected that approximately one quarter of these surveillance activities will focus specifically on the Tyre Labelling Regulations.

Rental Accommodation Scheme Administration

 105. Deputy Brendan Ryan Information on Brendan Ryan Zoom on Brendan Ryan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan in relation to the rent allowance scheme, the restrictions that are placed on local authorities on the size of properties acceptable under the scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27445/14]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan The operation of the rent allowance scheme is entirely a matter for my colleague, the Minister for Social Protection. The Rental Accommodation Scheme on the other hand is administered entirely by local authorities and is intended to provide an additional source of good quality rented accommodation for eligible persons. Individual authorities enter into contractual arrangements on behalf of tenants with accommodation providers, primarily in the private rented sector to secure medium to long-term availability of rented accommodation.

  When a local authority sources a property, or enters into a RAS arrangement with a property provider, it is based on a number of factors, namely that the property meets minimum standards for private rental accommodation, that it meets with the housing needs of the household concerned, and that the rent sought represents value for money. In that context there is no restriction per se on the size of a property entering the scheme where it meets the needs of the household concerned provided the household is not over accommodated in the property. It is a matter for each local authority to determine its own needs and those of the household when considering units under the scheme.

Rental Accommodation Scheme Expenditure

 106. Deputy Catherine Murphy Information on Catherine Murphy Zoom on Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will provide the amounts, for each local authority from 2005 to date, that have been paid in rental accommodation scheme payments; the amount that has been paid out on long-term leases; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27469/14]

Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Jan O'Sullivan): Information on Jan O'Sullivan Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan The table sets out the annual amount recouped to local authorities by my Department in respect of the Rental Accommodation Scheme from 2005 to end of March 2014.

-2014201320122011201020092008200720062005
Carlow Co Co€24,844€3,300,979€2,875,606€2,610,479€2,191,375€1,605,883€607,521€124,354€9,2860
Carlow TC00000€31,8440000
Carrick-on-Suir TC€90,675€347,272€353,554€340,765€277,382€136,082€53,544€350€7000
Cashel TC€99,810€325,338€232,432€140,173€71,108€47,229€27,281€13,995€2000
Cavan Co. Co.€704,804€2,101,024€1,815,162€1,370,899€1,034,119€735,235€234,055€177,045€34,2990
Clare Co. Co.€578,516€2,144,252€2,286,016€2,304,906€2,094,278€1,753,730€1,329,723€746,028€118,160€6,450
Clonmel BC€370,488€1,598,442€1,453,672€1,394,382€1,189,611€857,764€515,725€105,042€4500
Cork City€1,584,004€6,384,234€5,368,399€5,529,933€4,124,435€2,877,982€2,214,202€816,919€268,456€50,121
Cork Co.Co. €1,734,651€6,626,771€6,654,151€6,007,795€5,170,850€4,371,606€1,935,806€411,87200
Donegal Co. Co.€650,716€2,260,124€2,047,163€1,845,267€1,446,341€963,255€549,087€239,808€189,486€111,036
Dublin City Council€173,163€17,597,165€16,833,718€16,865,668€16,863,126€15,232,771€11,768,390€6,733,141€2,182,975€122,654
DLR Co. Co.€1,437,830€5,273,841€5,174,389€5,050,385€4,186,477€3,829,371€1,947,590€1,025,626€29,5650
Fingal Co. Co.€2,013,947€7,781,917€8,261,414€7,637,302€6,614,818€4,996,837€3,505,423€917,710€91,0600
Galway City€1,110,985€4,413,857€4,415,560€4,715,581€4,708,379€4,690,538€3,620,315€2,706,788€652,676€88,576
Galway Co. Co.€618,560€2,415,814€2,527,919€2,487,071€2,026,461€1,444,423€800,524€333,084€44,9980
Kerry Co. Co.€51,533€4,384,854€4,767,187€2,853,441€3,194,341€2,647,282€1,944,390€782,920€33,5560
Kildare Co. Co.€1,303,981€5,365,990€4,756,217€4,174,122€2,414,550€2,404,520€1,567,191€562,36200
Kilkenny Co. Co.€987,525€3,345,241€2,991,551€2,384,622€1,992,475€1,648,005€1,251,862€552,362€192,7160
Laois Co. Co.€306,143€1,107,941€1,114,935€1,050,291€784,127€622,414€488,247€267,255€25,5670
Leitrim Co. Co.€109,328€419,036€435,586€386,331€210,459€22,785€13,284€3,91000
Limerick City€64,512€3,872,452€3,905,608€3,409,132€2,958,361€2,445,542€1,831,591€814,203€284,526€77,022
Limerick Co. Co.€32,960€2,180,358€2,058,890€1,905,091€1,525,403€1,277,387€684,081€413,101€38,7490
Longford Co. Co.€8,674€1,157,357€1,441,226€1,759,035€1,726,280€1,506,487€993,580€480,854€25,7700
Louth Co. Co.€223,801€816,711€1,347,881€1,526,791€1,452,167€1,290,795€1,085,043€787,647€201,847€27,300
Mayo Co. Co.€1,216,468€4,179,591€4,101,799€3,925,484€3,272,119€2,853,462€1,823,576€596,965€31,4830
Meath Co. Co.0€1,999,630€1,664,806€1,197,172€562,631€407,633€241,877€100,691€24,2600
Monaghan Co. Co.€362,224€1,289,674€1,222,347€1,184,460€890,223€607,715€277,812€175,819€42,3270
North Tipperary Co. Co.€9,090€2,218,580€2,079,673€1,899,971€1,539,798€1,227,592€942,922€428,590€34,0040
Offaly Co. Co.€301,625€1,151,451€1,135,938€1,075,662€1,052,116€941,523€576,841€403,149€153,845€44,799
Roscommon Co. Co.€574,674€1,954,522€1,916,963€1,817,058€1,574,188€1,278,518€863,601€261,132€24,5580
Sligo Co. Co.€765,128€2,454,217€2,233,549€1,776,530€1,330,975€957,854€378,263€193,377€55,9230
South Dublin Co. Co.€3,888,731€14,570,207€13,375,087€12,606,223€11,521,903€10,009,000€4,419,082€3,903,114€714,518€39,786
South Tipperary Co. Co.€367,937€1,426,486€1,320,445€1,095,286€948,204€697,836€358,405€211,601€174,009€76,708
Tipperary TC€128,795€458,763€356,087€264,170€207,317€152,970€97,006€60,950€14,5000
Waterford City€735,970€2,605,933€2,437,118€2,332,756€1,903,898€1,367,877€929,870€672,239€263,5320
Waterford Co. Co.0€1,590,111€1,482,836€1,305,751€1,023,175€692,274€241,994€40,672€2,3000
Westmeath Co. Co.€530,178€1,905,250€1,793,833€2,002,197€1,772,940€1,477,868€880,077€485,663€52,280€7,500
Wexford Co. Co.€1,138,218€3,633,984€3,124,686€2,615,555€1,746,534€1,153,264€620,807€242,501€94,1810
Wicklow Co. Co.€1,084,851€4,227,239€4,066,565€3,069,630€2,437,866€1,950,843€1,260,851€455,774€48,2190
           
Total€25,385,339€130,886,608€125,429,966€115,917,366€100,040,810€83,215,994€52,881,439€27,248,611€6,154,980€651,951


  The table under sets out the amount recouped to local authorities by my Department in respect of the Social Housing Leasing Initiative from 2009 to end April 2014.
Local Authority201420132012201120102009
ATHLONE TOWN COUNCIL162,170521,352269,08840,225  
ATHY TOWN COUNCIL20,74383,200104,36870,615  
BIRR TOWN COUNCIL56,942258,34462,47312,505  
BRAY TOWN COUNCIL53,421213,94394,9424,108  
BUNCRANA TOWN COUNCIL61,056233,158255,879133,09337,726 
BUNDORAN TOWN COUNCIL1,1914,7774,7774,587  
CARLOW COUNTY COUNCIL26,022106,205137,04089,795  
CARLOW TOWN COUNCIL13,71254,31279,48466,961  
CASHEL TOWN COUNCIL3,97319,86511,9855,9371,368 
CASTLEBAR TOWN COUNCIL29,918115,501136,054145,756117,411 
CAVAN COUNTY COUNCIL10,73740,42124,90911,440  
CLARE COUNTY COUNCIL74,044314,996225,180135,5365,331 
CLONMEL BOROUGH COUNCIL18,923115,65083,94269,2813,289 
CORK CITY COUNCIL225,801877,593809,524918,515255,440 
CORK COUNTY COUNCIL865,7782,636,2002,142,6021,192,54297,824 
DONEGAL COUNTY COUNCIL112,659452,047510,375234,593 3,038
DROGHEDA BOROUGH COUNCIL65,856216,267163,71335,12313,482 
DUBLIN CITY COUNCIL1,046,5474,304,4303,279,5352,919,9511,200,719279,694
DUN LAOGHAIRE/RATHDOWN COUNTY COUNCIL388,1721,559,673684,636224,005  
DUNDALK TOWN COUNCIL386,6421,390,4241,210,358157,57123,868 
ENNIS TOWN COUNCIL53,780175,31897,54039,3035,101 
ENNISCORTHY TOWN COUNCIL 44,51723,031   
FINGAL COUNTY COUNCIL797,8912,422,5731,999,2921,100,914120,175 
GALWAY CITY COUNCIL267,7351,068,190978,508764,849  
GALWAY COUNTY COUNCIL39,646158,24858,617   
KERRY COUNTY COUNCIL78,631215,68038,839   
KILDARE COUNTY COUNCIL356,925860,514566,470463,599321,809 
KILKENNY COUNTY COUNCIL60,192338,861235,06788,181110,710 
LAOIS COUNTY COUNCIL166,099616,890550,694454,484213,98440,968
LEITRIM COUNTY COUNCIL8114,0552,183   
LETTERKENNY TOWN COUNCIL74,730335,487169,796153,33841,437 
LIMERICK CITY COUNCIL16,583128,625    
LIMERICK COUNTY COUNCIL27,243123,45792,368103,8245,337 
LONGFORD COUNTY COUNCIL17,61076,159116,23470,1059,768 
LOUTH COUNTY COUNCIL79,892219,579105,30897,949  
MAYO COUNTY COUNCIL134,459385,362193,68161,3016,580 
MEATH COUNTY COUNCIL130,031516,449458,617414,163175,0419,466
MONAGHAN COUNTY COUNCIL1,1256,7622,2623,267  
NENAGH TOWN COUNCIL30,182108,64695,18748,167  
NEW ROSS TOWN COUNCIL 7,713    
NORTH TIPPERARY COUNTY COUNCIL112,166381,830111,26924,313  
OFFALY COUNTY COUNCIL135,211433,623312,073243,68595,27928,939
ROSCOMMON COUNTY COUNCIL8,57134,03034,91542,2603,792 
SLIGO BOROUGH COUNCIL32,040102,75373,87357,339  
SLIGO COUNTY COUNCIL25,909102,300115,61539,671  
SOUTH DUBLIN COUNTY COUNCIL1,237,6882,552,5572,183,7921,851,388470,410206,306
SOUTH TIPPERARY COUNTY COUNCIL36,987189,80091,81432,1731,752 
TEMPLEMORE TOWN COUNCIL91,394450,031228,279160,891  
THURLES TOWN COUNCIL49,623171,76468,99520,967  
TIPPERARY TOWN COUNCIL11,18349,5503,863   
WATERFORD CITY COUNCIL76,465231,410261,78364,9754,924 
WATERFORD COUNTY COUNCIL80,463321,735317,978297,3798,428 
WESTMEATH COUNTY COUNCIL159,114540,938511,934406,100170,79950,697
WESTPORT TOWN COUNCIL4,58717,48030,33615,806  
WEXFORD BOROUGH COUNCIL 64,60126,7633,894  
WEXFORD COUNTY COUNCIL116,624307,902287,684191,34958,528 
WICKLOW COUNTY COUNCIL6,49227,789 6,602  
Total8,142,38927,311,53620,735,52413,794,3753,580,312619,108

Local and Community Development Programme Planning

 107. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn Information on Pádraig MacLochlainn Zoom on Pádraig MacLochlainn asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the chaos surrounding the rolling out of the social inclusion and community activation programme; if he has received reports of the insufficient information supplied to voluntary and community organisations currently delivering local community development programmes; if he understands that this process and the uncertainty generated thereby are causing grave damage to local and community development across the country; the steps he will take to rectify the situation; if he will reconsider his decision to tender the programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27477/14]

 112. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the chaos surrounding the rolling out of the social inclusion and community activation programme; if he has received reports of the insufficient information supplied to voluntary and community organisations currently delivering local community development programmes; his views that this process and the uncertainty generated thereby are causing grave damage to local and community development across the country; the steps he will take to rectify the situation; if he will reconsider his decision to tender the programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27492/14]

 116. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the chaos surrounding the rolling out of the social inclusion and community activation programme; if he has received reports of the insufficient information supplied to voluntary and community organisations currently delivering local community development programmes; his views that this process and the uncertainty generated thereby are causing grave damage to local and community development across the country; the steps he will take to rectify the situation; if he will reconsider his decision to tender the programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27496/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan I propose to take Questions Nos. 107, 112 and 116 together.

The Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) currently being established in all local authority areas will develop, co-ordinate and implement a more coherent and integrated approach to local and community development than heretofore, with the aim of reducing duplication and overlap and optimising the use of available resources for the benefit of citizens and communities. My Department’s Local and Community Development Programme is the largest social inclusion intervention of its kind in the State. The current Programme having officially ended at the end of 2013 is being implemented by the Local Development Companies (LDCs) on a transitional basis for 2014 pending the roll out of the new Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP) in January 2015.

SICAP is one of my key priorities and in accordance with the Public Spending Code, best practice internationally, legal advice and in order to ensure the optimum delivery of services to clients, the Programme will be subject to a public procurement process, which is currently underway. My Department has already been involved in a high level of engagement with the Irish Local Development Network (ILDN) and other key stakeholders in relation to the new Programme. A number of consultation events were held, and an on-line survey was conducted to give all interested parties an opportunity to input to the new Programme framework.

I am satisfied that the procurement process underway is in line with best practice and that the procurement documentation on e-Tenders contains all the relevant information on the process. I look forward to the outcome of the process and the roll out of SICAP in January 2015.

Local and Community Development Programme Planning

 108. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn Information on Pádraig MacLochlainn Zoom on Pádraig MacLochlainn asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the directive he cites, 2004/18/EU, to justify the tendering of the social inclusion and community activation programme was repealed before the notice of the tender was issued; if the tendering of the programme still has a safe legal basis; if he will outline the nature of that legal basis; in view of this legal uncertainty if he will abandon the tendering process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27478/14]

 109. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn Information on Pádraig MacLochlainn Zoom on Pádraig MacLochlainn asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan in respect of the tendering of the social inclusion and community activation programme, if he has read European Directive 2014/24/EU; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that it is now the current law on public procurement in Ireland; if he has read preamble seven which sets down that the directive is without prejudice to the freedom of member national, regional and local authorities to provide, commission and finance services that pursue public policy objectives and which specifies that the directive does not apply to systems of grant aid in particular in the social field; if he has read preamble 114 which sets down that member states and public authorities remain free to organise social services in a way that does not entail the conclusion of public contracts; if he has contrasted these preambles with his earlier statements to Dáil Éireann that he was legally obliged to tender the programme; in view of current European law if he will abandon the tendering of the social inclusion and activation programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27479/14]

 110. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn Information on Pádraig MacLochlainn Zoom on Pádraig MacLochlainn asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Ireland is the only country in the European Union which has put its national local community development programme or analogous programme out to public tender; the reason this is necessary in Ireland but not in any other member state; if he asked for or commissioned any advice, impact statement or study on the consequences of such a decision; if he will make any such papers available to the Houses of the Oireachtas; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27480/14]

 113. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the directive he cites, 2004/18/EU, to justify the tendering of the social inclusion and community activation programme, was repealed before the notice of the tender was issued; if the tendering of the programme still has any safe legal basis; the nature of that legal basis; if he will in view of this legal uncertainty abandon the tendering process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27493/14]

 114. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan in respect of the tendering of the social inclusion and community activation programme, has he read European Directive 2014/24/EU; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that it is now the current law on public procurement in Ireland; if he has read preamble seven which sets down that the directive is without prejudice to the freedom of member national, regional and local authorities to provide, commission and finance services that pursue public policy objectives and which specifies that the directive does not apply to systems of grant aid in particular in the social field; if he has read preamble 114 which sets down that member states and public authorities remain free to organise social services in a way that does not entail the conclusion of public contracts; if he has contrasted these preambles with his earlier statements to Dáil Éireann that he was legally obliged to tender the programme; if he will in view of current European law abandon the tendering of the social inclusion and activation programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27494/14]

 115. Deputy Finian McGrath Information on Finian McGrath Zoom on Finian McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Ireland is the only country in the European Union which has put its national local community development programme or analogous programme out to public tender; the reason this is necessary in Ireland but not in any other member state; if he asked for or commissioned any advice, impact statement or study on the consequences of such a decision; if he will make any such papers available to Dáil Éireann; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27495/14]

 117. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the directive he cites, 2004/18/EU, to justify the tendering of the social inclusion and community activation programme which was repealed before the notice of the tender was issued; if the tendering of the programme still has any safe legal basis; the nature of that legal basis; if he will in view of this legal uncertainty abandon the tendering process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27497/14]

 118. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Ireland is the only country in the European Union which has put its national local community development programme or analogous programme out to public tender; the reason this is necessary in Ireland but not in any other member state; if he asked for or commissioned any advice, impact statement or study on the consequences of such a decision; if he will make any such papers available to Dáil Éireann; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27498/14]

 119. Deputy Clare Daly Information on Clare Daly Zoom on Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan in respect of the tendering of the social inclusion and community activation programme, has he read European Directive 2014/24/EU; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that it is now the current law on public procurement in Ireland; if he has read preamble seven which sets down that the directive is without prejudice to the freedom of member national, regional and local authorities to provide, commission and finance services that pursue public policy objectives and which specifies that the directive does not apply to systems of grant aid in particular in the social field; if he has read preamble 114 which sets down that member states and public authorities remain free to organise social services in a way that does not entail the conclusion of public contracts; if he has contrasted these preambles with his earlier statements to Dáil Éireann that he was legally obliged to tender the programme; if he will in view of current European law abandon the tendering of the social inclusion and activation programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27499/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan I propose to take Questions Nos. 108 to 110, inclusive, 113 to 115, inclusive, and 117 to 119, inclusive, together.

  The proposals outlined in Putting People First - Action Programme for Effective Local Government seek to position local government “as the primary vehicle of governance and public service at local level – leading economic, social and community development, delivering efficient and good value services, and representing citizens and local communities effectively and accountably”. As part of the programme of reform of local government, Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) are being established in all local authority areas. These Committees, comprising public-private socio-economic interests, will have responsibility for local and community development programmes on an area basis, including the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme (SICAP). They will develop, co-ordinate and implement a more coherent and integrated approach to local and community development than heretofore, with the aim of reducing duplication and overlap and optimising the use of available resources for the benefit of citizens and communities.

  My Department’s Local and Community Development Programme is the largest social inclusion intervention of its kind in the State. The current Programme officially ended at the end of 2013 having operated for four years with funding of €281m over that period. It is being implemented by the Local Development Companies (LDCs) on a transitional basis for 2014 with a budget of €47m pending the roll out of the new SICAP. In accordance with the Public Spending Code, best practice internationally, legal advice, and in order to ensure the optimum delivery of services to clients, the Programme is subject to a public procurement process, which is currently underway. My Department is obliged to adhere to the rules under Directive 2004/18/EC. Directive 2014/24/EU on public procurement comes into effect on 18th April 2016. I am satisfied that the process underway takes account of all recent developments in the law of procurement.


Last Updated: 27/09/2016 16:12:35 First Page Previous Page Page of 77 Next Page Last Page