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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 518-533
 Header Item JobsPlus Scheme
 Header Item National Internship Scheme Eligibility
 Header Item Youth Guarantee
 Header Item Unemployment Data
 Header Item Departmental Staff Data
 Header Item Private Rented Accommodation Provision
 Header Item Social Welfare Offices
 Header Item Social Welfare Benefits Data
 Header Item Social Welfare Appeals Status
 Header Item Carer's Allowance Appeals
 Header Item Invalidity Pension Appeals
 Header Item Work Placement Programmes
 Header Item Social Insurance
 Header Item Ministerial Staff

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 835 No. 1

First Page Previous Page Page of 118 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 518-533

JobsPlus Scheme

 518. Deputy Luke 'Ming' Flanagan Information on Luke 'Ming' Flanagan Zoom on Luke 'Ming' Flanagan asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the reason single mothers who want to work cannot work under the JobsPlus scheme (details supplied), as they are not considered unemployed until their child is of seven years of age and are thus the recipient of a single parent payment and deemed not eligible to work; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13519/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton JobsPlus is a pilot incentive which encourages and rewards employers who offer employment opportunities to the long term unemployed. It takes the form of a cash grant payable monthly in arrears to the employer. In line with commitments made in the Pathways to Work   strategy, it is an activation support exclusively targeted at long-term jobseekers who are on the Live Register. Persons in receipt of the One Parent Family payment (OFP) are, therefore, not eligible for the incentive.

  However, recipients of OFP can avail of a number of activation supports including employment programmes such as JobBridge, the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance Scheme and Community Employment, as well as educational supports such as the Back to Education Allowance Scheme, Springboard, VTOS and Skillnets. They can also undertake SOLAS training courses.

National Internship Scheme Eligibility

 519. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the reason a recipient of a widow's pension would be excluded from taking part in the JobBridge scheme; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13532/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton JobBridge, the National Internship Scheme has made significant progress since it came into operation on the 1st July 2011. As at 13th March 2014, 26,874 internship placements have commenced to date with 6,602 participants currently undertaking internships and over 1,908 internship posts available on the JobBridge website www.jobbridge.ie.    

  Independent research indicates that over 60% of interns progress into paid employment within five months of completing their internship. These progression outcomes are exceptionally positive and compare very favourably with European averages in this area.

  Participation on JobBridge requires an applicant to have a live qualifying claim in their own right and to have accumulated three months (78 days) in the previous six months on an eligible claim (Jobseekers Allowance, Jobseekers Benefit, One Parent Family Payment, Disability Allowance, or signing for credits.)

  The eligibility criteria for the JobBridge scheme is based on the overall objective of labour market policy in ensuring a pathway to appropriate employment, training and education opportunities, in particular, for those on the Live Register. Accordingly, JobBridge targets scarce exchequer resources in a balanced and effective way to meet the needs of unemployed individuals rather than those in receipt of pension payments.

Youth Guarantee

 520. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the progress of the implementation of the youth guarantee scheme; the amount pledged to this scheme; the number of participants who have taken part in this scheme to date; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [13533/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton Implementation of the Youth Guarantee is a medium-term policy of the Irish Government. It is envisaged that the guarantee as it affects those aged under 18 years will be implemented within 2 years, i.e. by the end of 2015. The guarantee of an offer of training, education or work experience for those aged 18-24 years after a four month period should be implemented on a phased basis.

  Starting in 2014, and for completion by the end of 2014, processes and programmes will be progressively rolled out to ensure that all of those young unemployed people who need most support (i.e. are assessed as having a low probability of securing employment in the absence of support from the Public Employment Services) will receive a Youth Guarantee offer within four months.

  Additional planned supportive measures are now being developed and implemented: Jobfairs have been initiated in Q 1 2014; Intra-EU Mobility and Language Skills is being designed in Q1 2014 for implementation in Q2 2014; JobBridge for Disadvantaged Youth will be implemented in Q2 2014; The JobPlus variant for Youth Guarantee will be implemented in Q2 2014; Youth Entrepreneurship/CEBs and Microfinance Ireland is being initiated in Q1 2014.

  The Youth Guarantee also incorporates many initiatives which are already in place.

  Taking existing and planned provision together, the current estimate of programme uptake by young people in 2014 is approximately 28,000, with associated programme costs of €336 million. If all Post-Leaving Certificate course and apprenticeship provision is included, the total programme uptake rises to approximately 52,000, with associated programme costs of €528 million.

  The following table displays the total number of under 25s who have started across the various programmes outlined in the Youth Guarantee Implementation Plan in the first two months of 2014. Over 2,300 young people are known to have started on various programmes since the start of 2014, excluding those programmes for which figures are not available. Where figures are not yet available, this is generally because some programmes, such as the Vocational Training Opportunity Scheme (VTOS) and Back to Education Allowance (BTEA) have intakes in September as per the academic calendar, and therefore figures are not available on a year to date basis. In other cases, programmes have not yet commenced.

  Under 25 starters on Youth Guarantee programmes, January/February 2014

Programme2014 YTDNote
Youthreach/CTC219Only CTC starters – Youthreach

figures not available for 2014
JobBridge (including planned reserve)545-
Tus3 
JobsPlus77 
Momentum*13 
BTEA (excl Momentum)**Not available  
BTWEA51Including 2 persons on STEA
VTOSNot available 
FAS/Solas1166Based on SST, Traineeship & LTI starters YTD
CEB youth Entrepreneurship

Training and Mentoring supports
-Not yet commenced
CEB/MFI micro-loans for young people-Not yet commenced
International Work Experience and Training-Not yet commenced
GatewayNot available  
Community Employment230-
Total 2,304Excluding where figures are not available

Unemployment Data

 521. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the number of under 25s who have been out of work for four months or more; the number of under 25s who are classified as underemployed; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [13534/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The information requested by the Deputy in respect of the number of under 25s that have been out of work for four months or more is not collated by my Department. I am however informed that at the end of February 39,101 persons under the age of 25 years old were on the live register for three months or more.

  The total number of persons under the age of 25 years old on the live register at the end of February 2014 was 60,232. A tabular statement detailing this number by duration follows for the Deputy’s information.

~Less than 3* Months3 to 6 Months6 to 12 Months1 to 2 Years2 to 3 YearsMore than 3 YearsTotals
Jobseeker's Allowance18,0878,5578,8518,9234,7946,98456,196
Jobseeker's Benefit2,94762513819103,730
Jobseeker's Credits97696850139306
Totals21,1319,2519,0578,9924,8086,99360,232
*  Includes all casual registrants

Departmental Staff Data

 522. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the number of employment service officers and or advisers currently employed in her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [13535/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton Case officers employed by my Department deliver activation and case management services through Intreo centres and through the network of Departmental offices which are currently transitioning to a full Intreo service. Activation and case management services are also delivered via the Local Employment Service (LES) with 22 Local Development Companies and 1 community group across the country, on contract to my Department.

The number of staff carrying out case officer duties is changing due, for example, to on-going retirements and staff movements. I will be in touch with the Deputy shortly with the number currently in place.

Private Rented Accommodation Provision

 523. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton her views on the number of landlords who will not accept tenants in receipt of rent allowance; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13536/14]

 536. Deputy Peadar Tóibín Information on Peadar Tóibín Zoom on Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the provisions being put in place to deal with the rent allowance shortfall and the fact that many hard-pressed tenants are forced to make additional monthly top up payments to secure the rental property in the first instance; and the way this impromtu solution leads to a distortion of actual rent figures and the allowances needed by social welfare recipients to secure a home.  [13768/14]

 540. Deputy Terence Flanagan Information on Terence Flanagan Zoom on Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the safeguards that are in place to ensure that landlords of rent allowance properties receive the rent allowance from their tenants; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13819/14]

 569. Deputy Kevin Humphreys Information on Kevin Humphreys Zoom on Kevin Humphreys asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the amount that was paid in rental supplement in Dublin 2, 4, 6 and 8 respectively in each year from 2007 to date in tabular form; the number of individual claims for each year in those areas; the rental limits that applied; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [14160/14]

 570. Deputy Kevin Humphreys Information on Kevin Humphreys Zoom on Kevin Humphreys asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton her plans to increase the rent supplement levels in the Dublin city area due to the increase in market rents and the difficulties persons are having in securing accommodation; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [14161/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton I propose to take Questions Nos. 523, 536, 540, 569 and 570 together.

  The purpose of rent supplement is to provide short-term support to eligible people living in private rented accommodation, whose means are insufficient to meet their accommodation costs and who do not have accommodation available to them from any other source. The overall aim is to provide short-term assistance, and not to act as an alternative to the other social housing schemes operated by the Exchequer. There are currently approximately 78,000 rent supplement recipients for which the Government has provided over €344 million for 2014.   Following an extensive review of the private rental market revised maximum rent limits were introduced from Monday 17 June 2013 until 31 December 2014. Despite the overall pressures on the social protection budget, there have been increases in the rent limits in some areas including Dublin. The fact that approximately 78,000 people are currently in receipt of rent supplement, of which almost 30,000 are in the Dublin area, shows that a significant number of landlords are accommodating applicants on the scheme.

  A breakdown of rent supplement expenditure in Dublin by postal code is not available. Rent supplement recipients in Dublin each year since 2007 is provided in the following tabular statement. Rent supplement recipients in Dublin 2, 4, 6, 6W and 8 at end 2012 and 2013 are also provided, however this information is not available for earlier years. The maximum rent limits in operation in Dublin since 2007 are also provided.

  All prospective tenants, including those seeking to access rent supplement, are finding it increasingly difficult to secure appropriate accommodation due to the reduced availability of rental properties, particularly in Dublin. Increasing the maximum rent limits for rent supplement will not resolve this difficulty, due to the reduced level of supply, and would result in further increases in rental costs for all persons renting including those on reduced incomes and students. The Department continues to monitor trends in the private rental market to determine the impact on rent supplement recipients and is working closely with Dublin City Council and Threshold to ensure that the necessary arrangements can be put in place in respect of vulnerable families in receipt of rent supplement.

  Department officials administering rent supplement have considerable experience in dealing with customers of the scheme and will continue to make every effort to ensure that their accommodation needs are met and that the residence is reasonably suited to their residential and other needs.

  Under the legislative provisions governing rent supplement, the Department’s relationship is with the tenant; the tenant makes the application for rent supplement and payment is made to the tenant to assist them with their accommodation needs. There is no direct relationship between the landlord and the Department in the administration of the scheme. However, social welfare legislation provides for the payment of a rent supplement payment to a nominated payee such as a landlord on behalf of the tenant. This arrangement is entered at the tenant’s request and subject to the consent of the Department.

  It is open to the landlord to bring to the attention of the Department any instance where they suspect that a tenant is receiving rent supplement and is not paying their rent. Where the Department becomes aware that a person is not using rent supplement to meet the accommodation costs, payment of the supplement is suspended and the matter investigated. Where a landlord has a grievance in relation to the non-payment of rent by a tenant, s/he may apply to the Private Residential Tenancies Board to have the dispute resolved through the Board’s dispute resolution process.

  Rent supplement is calculated to ensure that an eligible person, after the payment of rent, has a minimum income equal to the rate of supplementary welfare allowance (SWA) appropriate to their family circumstances, less a minimum weekly contribution of €30 for a single person or €40 for a couple. Where a person has an additional income above the rate of SWA they are, in certain circumstances, required to top up their rent.

  The tenant, landlord or landlord’s agent must complete the rent supplement application form declaring that the information provided is accurate. The form clearly states that making a false statement or withholding information may lead to prosecution.

  The Department, in June 2012, introduced powers of enquiry for staff to formally request and oblige landlords to provide information in respect of rent supplement tenants, principally to verify the agreed rent and tenancy.

  Any instance of false declarations of the amount of rent payable should be reported to the relevant Department representatives who have specific legislative powers to deal with such offences. In such cases the Department’s representative will discuss the circumstances of the case with the tenant before making any decision in relation to ongoing entitlement.

  The Department’s strategic policy direction is to return rent supplement to its original purpose of a short term income support. In July 2013 the Government approved the introduction of the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP). Under HAP, responsibility for recipients of rent supplement with a long-term housing need will transfer from the Department of Social Protection to local authorities. Payments will be made direct to landlords under the HAP scheme. Officials in the Department are working closely with those in the lead Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, to pilot HAP in Limerick local authority in early 2014 with further roll out to selected local authorities during the year.

Table 1: Rent Supplement Recipients in Dublin.    

YearRecipients
200720,498
200824,119
200931,261
201033,818
201134,425
201232,584
201329,541
  Table 2: Rent Supplement recipients in Dublin 2, 4, 6 and 8
~End 2012End 2013
Dublin 2246201
Dublin 4349265
Dublin 61,7521,436
Dublin 6W403320
Dublin 82,4222,225
Table 3:   Maximum Monthly Rent Levels in Dublin since 2007
Maximum

Rent Levels
DublinDublin Dublin FingalDublin

Not Fingal
Dublin FingalDublin

Not Fingal
Dublin FingalDublin

Not Fingal
Single Shared425399350390250300300350
Couple Shared425399390400330370350400
Single 563529529529475475520520
Couple867806770800650700700750
Couple/One Parent Family -

1 Child
1,000930930930775875850950
Couple/One Parent Family -

2 Children
1,2001,1101,0001,050825925900975
Couple/One Parent Family -

3 Children
1,2001,1101,0501,1009009509501,000

Social Welfare Offices

 524. Deputy Willie O'Dea Information on Willie O'Dea Zoom on Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if she will provide an update on the roll out of the Intreo offices; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13537/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The Intreo Project requires the acquisition and development of some new properties and the re-modelling and refurbishment of others. All of this also entails the re-accommodation of staff including the transfer and set-up of IT, furniture and other utilities across multiple locations.

Notwithstanding the complexity of such a large property programme, the Intreo service is fully operational in forty four offices and the Department is working with the OPW towards a target of completing the roll-out of the Intreo service to all local offices by the end of 2014.

Social Welfare Benefits Data

 525. Deputy Timmy Dooley Information on Timmy Dooley Zoom on Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the number of persons who are benefiting from the back to work enterprise allowance scheme that have entered the taxi industry; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13545/14]

 526. Deputy Timmy Dooley Information on Timmy Dooley Zoom on Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the number of persons who have benefited from the back to work enterprise allowance scheme who entered the taxi industry as part thereof since she entered office; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [13546/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton I propose to take Questions Nos. 525 and 526 together.

  A breakdown by occupation, or the nature of the self-employment enterprise, of recipients of the back to work enterprise allowance scheme (BTWEA) is not available from the records held centrally by the Department.

An eligible person wishing to commence a business as a taxi driver, as with any other business, may apply for the BTWEA. To qualify for the scheme, a person must set up a self-employment business that has been approved by a Local Integrated Development Company or one of this Department’s Case Officers.   The business venture must be deemed to be viable and sustainable and must not involve displacement of existing business in the same industry. Each application for BTWEA is decided on its merits, within the criteria set down for the scheme. In assessing viability, cognisance is taken of the demand for, and supply of, the particular service at local level.

  The Deputy will appreciate that it is not a function of the Department to regulate entry into any specific business. Each application for the BTWEA is examined on its own individual aspects and local demand and supply must be considered, regardless of the particular industry.

Social Welfare Appeals Status

 527. Deputy Michael Ring Information on Michael Ring Zoom on Michael Ring asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the reason the file of a person (details supplied) in County Mayo has not yet been forwarded to the social welfare appeals office despite the fact that an appeal was registered on 10 December 2013; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13569/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton  The Social Welfare Appeals Office has advised me that an appeal by the person concerned was registered in that office on 10th December 2013. It is a statutory requirement of the appeals process that the relevant papers and comments by or on behalf of the Deciding Officer on the grounds of appeal be sought from the Department of Social Protection. These papers were received in the Social Welfare Appeals Office on 14th March 2014 and the case will be referred to an Appeals Officer who will make a summary decision on the appeal based on documentary evidence presented or, if required, hold an oral hearing.

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.

Carer's Allowance Appeals

 528. Deputy Seán Ó Fearghaíl Information on Seán Ó Fearghaíl Zoom on Seán Ó Fearghaíl asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if she will allow an appeal of an application for carer's allowance in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13570/14]

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 appeal from the person concerned was registered on 13th   March 2014. In accordance with statutory requirements that Office have written to the person concerned and asked him to set out the complete and up to date grounds of his appeal. On receipt of his response the relevant papers and comments by the Deciding Officer on the grounds of appeal will be requested from the Department of Social Protection.    

  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.

Invalidity Pension Appeals

 529. Deputy John O'Mahony Information on John O'Mahony Zoom on John O'Mahony asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton when a person (details supplied) in County Galway will receive a decision on their appeal for invalidity pension; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13614/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The Social Welfare Appeals Office has advised me that an appeal by the person concerned was registered in that office on 13th January 2014. It is a statutory requirement of the appeals process that the relevant Departmental papers and comments by the Deciding Officer on the grounds of appeal be sought. When these have been received from the Department, the case in question will be referred to an Appeals Officer who will make a summary decision on the appeal based on the documentary evidence presented or, if required, hold an oral appeal hearing.

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.

  Question No. 530 withdrawn.

Work Placement Programmes

 531. Deputy Derek Nolan Information on Derek Nolan Zoom on Derek Nolan asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton if persons with a disability will be eligible to participate in the new Government initiative gateway scheme; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13618/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The purpose of Gateway is to focus on those people who are long-term unemployed. For this reason, eligibility is at present confined to those on the Live Register for 24 months and in receipt of jobseeker’s allowance. These provisions are to ensure a targeted approach to those currently affected by long-term unemployment.

Persons in receipt of disability payments are not, therefore, eligible for participation on Gateway. I currently have no plans to extend the qualifying criteria beyond that identified above.

Social Insurance

 532. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the current estimate of future liabilities her Department is facing in respect of the State pension contributory and State pension non contributory; and if she will make a statement on the matter.  [13632/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton Section 10 of the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 requires my Department to commission an actuarial review of the position of the Social Insurance Fund (SIF) at 5-year intervals. The third Actuarial Review of the SIF was published in 2012 and covers the period to 2066. Projections in respect of the State pension (contributory) are as follows:

-20152016201720182019202020302040205020602066
State Pension (contributory)(€ Billion)4.7835.1725.5846.0126.4866.92711.00917.95626.74633.23336.562
  These projections were made on a ‘no policy change’ basis.

  The increase in State pension contributory expenditure reflects changing demographics with older people living longer. The number of State pension contributory recipients at the end of 2013 was 329,531 and this number is increasing by approximately 17,000 each year.

  State pension (non-contributory) is a means tested payment, funded directly from the Exchequer, rather than the SIF and there are no corresponding projections. As a consequence, in addition to the variables such as demographic change, it is also impacted by other pressures such as: social Insurance coverage (increases in this result in higher numbers qualifying for the contributory pension, thereby reducing the number of non-contributory pensioners); private pension coverage (again, increased coverage would be expected to reduce pressures on the non-contributory pension); general economic trends, which are likely to increase or decrease the means available to those over 66, thereby impacting on the numbers who qualify for non-contributory pensions.

  The widening of the applicability of PRSI in recent decades has seen a small downward trend in the non-contributory pension. In 2009, the cost of this payment amounted to €1.0 billion, whereas by 2012 this had declined to €963 million (96,129 recipients), and this reduction is expected to continue as the numbers qualifying for the contributory pension increases. It is, of course, significantly less than the corresponding increase in the State pension (contributory).

  The increase in the expenditure projected for the contributory pension would be expected to increase future shortfalls in the SIF, and in time become unsustainable without pension reform. In order to provide for sustainable pensions and to facilitate a longer working life, a number of significant reforms to State pensions have recently been introduced as follows: the standardisation of State pension age to age 66 began in 2014. While the current State pension age of 66 remains, the State pension (transition) which applies for one year for persons of age 65 has ceased from 1st   January 2014; State pension age will increase further to 67 in 2021 and 68 in 2028; with effect from April 2012, and as provided for in legislation in 1997, the number of paid contributions required to qualify for a State pension increased from 260 paid contributions to 520 paid contributions; as provided for in Budget 2012, from September 2012, new rate bands for State pension were introduced. These additional payment rate bands more accurately reflect the social insurance history of a person and ensure that those who contribute more during a working life benefit more in retirement than those with lesser contributions; as announced in Budget 2012, the period for which a claim for State pension can be backdated is six months. This change came into effect in April 2012.

  Following considerable policy analysis, it is planned to introduce a ‘total contribution approach’. The level of pension paid will be directly proportionate to the number of social insurance contributions made by a person over his or her working life. The proposed date for the introduction of a move to a total contributions approach is 2020, but this may be subject to change.

Ministerial Staff

 533. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald Information on Mary Lou McDonald Zoom on Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Social Protection Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton the number of civil servants engaged in constituency work on her behalf; and the salaries, accommodation costs and expenses involved or associated with these duties.  [13690/14]

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): Information on Joan Burton Zoom on Joan Burton The information requested by the Deputy is set out in tablular format.

  The number of staff and costs involved are in line with Government policy in this area. There are no other expenses or accommodation costs specifically associated with these posts as both officers are based in the headquarters of my Department.

  Salaries with effect from 1 July 2013 (Post Haddington Road Agreement)

  Minister Burton

  Grade                                                                              Salary Scale

  Established civil servants

  1 Executive Officer                                                     €30,516 - €47,975

  1 Clerical Officer                                                          €23,177 - €37,341

   Salaries 2011 to 30 June 2013 ( Pre Haddington Road Agreement)

  Minister Burton

  Constituency Office

  Grade                                                                                   Salary Scale              

  Established civil servants

  1 Executive Officer                                                               €30,516 - €47,975*

  1 Clerical Officer                                                                  €23,177 – €37,341*

  March 2010 – March 2011

  Minister Ó Cuiv,

  Constituency Office

  Grade                                                                                   Salary Scale

  Established civil servants

  1 Executive Officer                                                               €30,516 - €47,975*

  2 Clerical Officer                                                                   €23,177 - €37,341*

  01 Jan 2010 to March 2010

  Minister Hanafin, T.D

  Constituency Office

  Grade                                                                                   Salary Scale             

  Established civil servants

  1 Executive Officer                                                               €30,516 - €47,975*

  2 Clerical Officer                                                                   €22,015 - €35,515

  1 Clerical Officer                                                                   €23,177 - €37,341*

  Pre Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Service legislation

  2009 Minister Hanafin

  Constituency Office

  From 01 September 2008 (Wage Increase 2.5%)

  Grade                                                                                 Salary Scale                  

  Established civil servants

  1 Executive Officer                                                               €32,179 – €51,054*

  2 Clerical Officer                                                                   €24,397 - €39,558*

  1 Clerical Officer                                                                   €23,174 - €37,584


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