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Written Answers. - Public Transport.

Wednesday, 6 February 2002

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 547 No. 4

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 107. Mr. Naughten Information on Denis Naughten Zoom on Denis Naughten  asked the Minister for Public Enterprise Information on Mary O'Rourke Zoom on Mary O'Rourke  her proposals to provide a public transport service to pensioners in receipt of a travel pass who cannot avail of free transport due to the lack of a service; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [3804/02]

Minister for Public Enterprise (Mrs. O'Rourke): Information on Mary O'Rourke Zoom on Mary O'Rourke The responsibility for the free travel scheme rests with the Minister for Social, Community and Family Affairs. Under the national development plan, substantial progress is being made in improving public transport services in the main urban areas. Significant improvements have also been made in inter city, commuter and regional public transport services. While progress continues in these areas, it is acknowledged that there remain some transport shortcomings in certain parts of rural Ireland. However, initiatives to address the rural public transport problem are well advanced.

On 21 January, I announced the names of 19 community transport groups selected by Area Development Management Limited for funding under the rural transport initiative. This initiative aims to promote and support the development of innovative, community based pilot public transport projects in rural areas. An interdepartmental committee on rural public transport, chaired by my Department, is currently developing recommendations for a rural public transport policy. One of the issues being considered by the committee is the operation and availability of rural public transport services in respect of older people-pensioners. I expect to receive the committee's report shortly.

Question No. 108 answered with Question No. 105.

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