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. 679-695
 Header Item Departmental Funding
 Header Item Housing Assistance Payments Administration
 Header Item Water Services Provision
 Header Item Environmental Regulations
 Header Item Environmental Policy
 Header Item Social and Affordable Housing Provision
 Header Item Animal Breeding Regulations
 Header Item Community Development Initiatives
 Header Item Building Regulations Amendments
 Header Item Waste Management
 Header Item Local Authority Staff
 Header Item Local Authority Expenditure
 Header Item Foreshore Licence Applications
 Header Item Departmental Reports

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. 679-695

Departmental Funding

 679. Deputy Barry Cowen Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the total funding provided to Philanthropy Ireland in 2013 and estimated in 2014, broken down by expenditure; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13347/14]

 680. Deputy Barry Cowen Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will provide the name of companies that were hired by Philantrophy Ireland for public relations works in 2011, 2012, 2013 and to date in 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13348/14]

 683. Deputy Barry Cowen Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the number of times his Department received requests by Philanthropy Ireland to meet in 2011, 2012 and 2013; the number of times his Department met with Philanthropy Ireland in those years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13387/14]

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. 679, 680 and 683 together.

Funding of approximately €1.9 million over a three-year period, beginning in 2012, is being allocated to Philanthropy Ireland (on the basis that it is matched with funding from philanthropic sources) to support the work of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising. During 2013 my Department provided €631,635 to Philanthropy Ireland; this covers core costs for the organisation (€60,000), the roll out of the National Giving Campaign (€551,635) and the set-up of the Social Innovation Fund (€20,000). To date in 2014, funding of €315,817.50 has been provided to the organisation, representing 50% of the annual allocation in support of Philanthropy Ireland forum-related work, as outlined above.

  Philanthropy Ireland recently provided a report to my Department on the National Giving Campaign which shows that Drury Communications were contracted by Philanthropy Ireland from the middle of 2012 to provide public relations support for this campaign. As the remaining funding provided by my Department to Philanthropy Ireland is in respect of core costs priority, my Department does not hold other information relating to Public Relations Companies hired by Philanthropy Ireland.

  My Department met with Philanthropy Ireland on a number of occasions through the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising and separately in respect of the contractual arrangements and progress in respect of the Organisation’s delivery on the recommendations of the Forum to grow and develop philanthropy in Ireland. Details of these meetings are set out in the following table.   

Meeting Date Meeting Description
21/04/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy
18/05/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy
29/06/ 2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy
5/09/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy
21/09/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
06/10/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
15/11/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
6/12/2011 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
25/04/2012 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
04/07/2012 Launch of Forum Report in National Library – An Taoiseach and Minister Hogan in attendance.  80 attendees. Pre-launch briefing meeting with Minister Hogan in Leinster House
17/07/2012 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, contract negotiations
26/07/2012 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, contract negotiations
13/11/2012 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government – Social Innovation Fund meeting with Paul Carttar of Social Investment Fund USA
06/06/2013 Minister Hogan – Forum Update meeting
19/06/2013 Launch of One Percent Campaign in Smock Alley Theatre.  MInister Hogan and Department officials in attendance – total approximately 300 attendees.
08/07/2013 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, National Giving Campaign
24/07/2013 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, National Giving Campaign
16/09/2013 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
26/11/2013 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising
16/01/2014 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, progress report on National Giving Campaign.
03/02/2014 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, progress report on National Giving Campaign.
11/02/2014 Official – Dept Environment, Community and Local Government, progress report on National Giving Campaign.
25/02/2014 Meeting of the Forum on Philanthropy and Fundraising

Housing Assistance Payments Administration

 681. 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, in respect of the proposed housing assistance payment, an estimate of rental top-ups currently being paid has been factored into the calculations on the new payment arrangements that will be introduced; if he will further indicate that the staffing allocation in the pilot areas for the HAP scheme has been increased to allow for efficient administration, or will existing staff be expected to administer the scheme; the number of staff in the various local authorities expected to be assigned to the project; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13363/14]

 682. 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, in respect of the proposed housing assistance payment, he is concerned that the new system is being fully tested if it is only being rolled out in local authorities with low staff to population ratios; if extra staff will be assigned to assist local authorities who are presently struggling to cover existing services with current staff compliment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13364/14]

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 I propose to take Questions Nos. 681 and 682 together.

I understand that ‘top up’ payments under the rent supplement scheme fall into two specific categories – those that are specifically approved by the Department of Social Protection where a person has additional income above the rate of supplementary welfare allowance which would allow additional rent payments to be made and still have sufficient income to meet their basic needs, and those that occur when ‘false declarations’ of rent supplement are made through the use of illegal top - ups. While the matter of both authorised and illegal top - ups in rent supplement have been discussed in the context of developing the business processes for the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) my Department has not included an estimate of rental top-ups for the purposes of HAP in terms of what currently might be paid by tenants under the rent supplement scheme.

In respect of the staff resources, the business process design exercise for HAP which was completed in 2013 involved input from all the relevant key stakeholders. This process included a preliminary examination of the organisational structure that will be required for HAP, including any change management issues that may arise. In the context of that exercise the County and City Managers’ Association (CCMA), as part of the wider local government reform agenda, is considering the delivery possibilities including the costs and resource requirements. The CCMA, in conjunction with the local authorities involved in the first phase of HAP, are providing on-going advice to my Department in relation to the resources that will be required by local authorities to implement HAP. Limerick City and County Council as lead authority has led on preparation of a business case, under the direction of the HAP Project Board, for the delivery of HAP by local authorities. The business case is at an advanced stage of drafting.

  Question No. 683 answered with Question No. 679.

Water Services Provision

 684. Deputy Simon Harris Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if good advice-education and grant schemes will be provided to help families install water conserving features in their houses; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [13401/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan From 1 January 2014 Irish Water assumed responsibility for the delivery of water services capital infrastructure, including water conservation measures. Irish Water is committed to installing 1.05 million domestic meters across Ireland between now and 2016. International experience shows that water meters can reduce consumption by between 10 - 15 %. Understanding how much water you consume is an important step in conservation.  As part of the metering programme, my Department is currently working on proposals regarding customer-side leakage but the detailed arrangements are not yet finalised.

  I understand that Irish Water has placed information on water conservation for householders on its website (www.water.ie) and is also supporting the An Taisce Green Schools programme, which is providing water conservation education to schools throughout Ireland. My Department has asked Irish Water to put in place specific arrangements to address the queries which public representatives may have in relation to matters pertaining to the operation of water services under the new utility. I understand that Irish Water has made contact with Oireachtas members to outline the arrangements for addressing such queries in a timely manner.

Environmental Regulations

 685. Deputy Simon Harris Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will provide an update on the introduction of a ban on smoky coal; the parts of the country that are not covered by such a ban; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13435/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The ban on the marketing, sale and distribution of bituminous fuel (or ‘smoky coal ban’ as it is commonly known) was first introduced in Dublin in 1990 in response to severe episodes of winter smog that resulted from the widespread use of smoky coal for residential heating   .

Air quality monitoring carried out by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) showed that the ban proved very effective in reducing particulate matter and sulphur dioxide levels in Dublin. As well as bringing air quality levels into compliance with the then EU standards, the ban had the effect of significantly improving human health in the capital. Research indicated that the ban in Dublin resulted in over 350 fewer annual deaths. The ban was subsequently extended to other urban areas. On 31 August 2012, following a public consultation process, I gave effect to consolidating solid fuel regulations, S.I. No. 326 of 2012, that introduced a number of improved and updated provisions with the aim of ensuring that the smoky coal ban remains fit for purpose in safeguarding air quality by limiting harmful emissions of air pollutants arising from the use of certain residential solid fuels. The updated provisions included the following -   

- the boundaries of most existing smoky coal ban areas were reviewed to take account of urban development in the intervening years since the regulations were originally made;   

- a complementary ban on the burning of smoky coal inside ban areas was introduced, to better support the established ban on its marketing, sale and distribution; and   

- the ban was extended to sev en new towns with effect from May 2013, including Greystones and Wicklow   .

The ban now applies in 27 cities and towns nationwide, including all towns with a population greater than 15,000 people, bringing the ban areas broadly into line with national EPA air quality management zones.   Maps of all smoky coal ban areas are available on my Department’s website –

www.environ.ie/en/Environment/Atmosphere/AirQuality/SmokyCoalBan/

  Monitoring by the EPA has shown that air quality is poorer in towns where the smoky coal ban does not apply, although there is evidence that smaller smoky coal ban areas tend to be less effective. The further extension of the ban to smaller towns on an individual basis may not be the most effective solution to addressing the problem of emissions from residential solid fuel use in these areas. Similarly, the border with Northern Ireland would present enforcement challenges if a national ban on smoky coal were unilaterally introduced. However, it is recognised that having different regulations between urban and rural locations is not ideal, as it results in different levels of environmental protection and clean air benefits for citizens in different locations.

  Under the auspices of the North South nisterial Council, and in conjunction with the Department of the Environment for Northern Ireland, my Department has commissioned a study to inform a discussion on policy options to further address emissions from resid ential solid fuel use on an all- island basis. The study will include-

  - an assessment of the solid fuel market and barriers to the use of cleaner fuels;

  - consideration of the role and impacts of biomass (primarily wood and wood-based products) and the links to climate policy; and

  - an economic analysis addressing the potential positive and negative effects on the consumer, for example, resulting from potential fuel switching, the availability of smokeless fuels to supply an all-island market and job creation opportunities in the manufacture and supply of smokeless fuels.

   A final report is due in August 2014.

Environmental Policy

 686. Deputy Simon Harris Information on Simon Harris Zoom on Simon Harris asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the way the smokeless fuel policy is policed by local authorities; the resources local authorities have to ensure such a scheme is policed; the number of persons that have received fines or warnings in relation to smoky coal from 2012 to date in 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13440/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The regulatory provisions of the ban on the marketing, sale, distribution and use of bituminous fuel in specified ban areas are set out in the Air Pollution Act (Marketing, Sale, Distribution and Burning of Specified Fuels) Regulations 2012. The Regulations are enforced by authorised local authority personnel who may undertake inspections of premises and vehicles being used for the sale and distribution of solid fuel , as well as collect samples. A local authority may bring a prosecution under section 11 of the Air Pollution Act 1987 for breaches of the Regulations. The maximum penalty for breaches of the Regulations is a fine of €5,000 and/or imprisonment for up to six months on summary conviction.

The Regulations also require that each local authority submits annual returns to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), detailing activities undertaken relating to the implementation and enforcement of the Regulations in their functional areas. EPA figures show that in 2012, a total of 331 enforcement actions were initiated by local authorities. The returns for 2013 are not yet available. My Department has established a local authority implementation group (LAIG) for solid fuel enforcement. The LAIG serves as a forum to facilitate an exchange of information and intelligence between local authorities, the EPA and other interested parties with the aim of improving the consistency of implementation and enforcement of the Regulations. The LAIG meets 2-3 times per year and is attended by most local authorities, the EPA and my Department.

With regard to resource allocation for enforcement, it is a matter for each local authority to determine its own spending priorities in the context of the annual budgetary process, having regard to both locally identified needs and available resources.

Social and Affordable Housing Provision

 687. 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 if he will detail all the moneys collected from private residential housing developers in lieu of those developers not providing Part V social and affordable housing; the way that money was collected; the amount of money that was collected; if he will provide the answer by breakdown of every local authority for the period 2002 to 2007 inclusive; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13448/14]

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 My Department publishes a wide range of housing statistics, including data, broken down by local authority and on an annual basis, on the number of land transfers, and payment amounts in lieu of land transfers, under Part V of the Planning and Development Acts. The statistics concerned are available on my Department’s website at http://www.environ.ie/en/Publications/StatisticsandRegularPublications/HousingStatistics/FileDownLoad,15291,en.xls.

  As with all local charges, the invoicing and collection of due amounts is a matter for the local authority concerned to manage in the light of prevailing local circumstances and in accordance with normal financial procedures.

Animal Breeding Regulations

 688. Deputy Derek Nolan Information on Derek Nolan Zoom on Derek Nolan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan his plans to change the legislation on dog breeding so that it encompasses a more breed neutral system than the breed specific system currently in place; if he will provide further information on a number of reports that have highlighted the short-comings of the current system; if he will consult with experts and organisations such as Dogs Trust and Veterinary Ireland for their current understanding, guidance and expertise; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13485/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The primary legislation in relation to the control of dogs – the 1986 Control of Dogs Act - is already dog breed neutral , in that it requires all dog owners or persons in charge of a dog to keep the dog under effectual control. Specific control requirements in relation to certain dog breeds were set out in the Control of Dogs (Restriction of Certain Dogs) Regulations 1991 and updated in 1998. The decision to introduce these further specific control requirements was taken as a balanced and workable arrangement which recognises the rights of dog owners versus the needs of society to be protected from dogs with a significant capability to inflict very serious injury.

Several jurisdictions have addressed the matter of restrictions of particular breeds of dogs in a similar way to Ireland. It is worth noting that England, Northern Ireland, France and New Zealand all have similar restrictions on specific breeds of dogs. My Department is, and will continue to be, in regular contact with interested parties such as Dogs Trust and the ISPCA on several matters, including the regulations in question. It is not my intention at present to amend the relevant legislative provisions.

Community Development Initiatives

 689. Deputy John Halligan Information on John Halligan Zoom on John Halligan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan his plans regarding the aligning of community projects like Waterford Traveller Community Development Project; the number of social inclusion officers that will be available to Waterford City Council to cover city and council areas (details supplied). [13488/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan The vision and focus underpinning the enhanced alignment of local government and local development is to achieve a more joined-up approach to service delivery at local level. This will be underpinned by new local governance arrangements that will seek to enhance involvement by citizens and communities in the implementation and targeting of services. The new measures will see the establishment of Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) in each local authority area over the coming mont hs in line with the provisions of the recently enacted Local Government Reform Act 2014.

These Committees will bring together both statutory and not-statutory partners, including the community sector, to bring greater co-ordination to area-based activity in their respective areas. Each LCDC will be tasked with developing the community elements of a 6-year Local Economic and Community Plan for its area, encompassing State funded local and community development programmes and interventions, including the Local and Community Development Programme (LCDP) which currently funds the Waterford Traveller Community Development Project, through the National Traveller Partnership (NTP).

I am confident that the new committees, working with a wide range of local community groups, including also with local Traveller Interagency Groups, will bring a strong, strategic focus to the implementation of the Local Economic and Community Plan as well as the LCDP. This implementation will involve local development actors including development workers engaged in Local and Community Development Programmes in the Waterford area, and, therefore, the skills and experience that has been built up will continue to be available and utilised locally.

The social inclusion unit that currently operates in Waterford City Council will be part of the new unified city and county local authority when the merger is complete.  Waterford is one of 16 local authority areas with a social inclusion unit, and while the area of operation of the Waterford Social Inclusion unit will be greater following the merger, it will remain a valuable resource for the area, ensuring a continued strong focus on social inclusion.

Building Regulations Amendments

 690. Deputy Tony McLoughlin Information on Tony McLoughlin Zoom on Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if he will consider adding chartered architectural technologists to the list of registers identified under the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations 2014 here; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13506/14]

 703. Deputy Nicky McFadden Information on Nicky McFadden Zoom on Nicky McFadden asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if the criteria for supervising engineers and architectural technologists will be widened under the Building Control Regulations (SI 9/2014) 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13712/14]

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. 690 and 703 together.

New Building Control Regulations have come into effect on 1 March 2014 requiring, inter alia, that statutory certificates of compliance be given by construction professionals in respect of the design and construction of new buildings.

The statutory certificates of compliance must be signed by a registered professional i.e. a person who is included on the statutory registers of architects or building surveyors maintained in accordance with the Building Control Act 2007 or on the register of chartered engineers established under the Institution of Civil Engineers of Ireland (Charter Amendment) Act 1969. Architects, Building Surveyors and Chartered Engineers are the construction professions typically involved in the design of construction works in Ireland and reference to these professions in regulation is entirely appropriate.

Depending on their personal circumstances, it may be open to persons who are members of the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (CIAT) and who possess the requisite experience and competence in the design of buildings, to seek inclusion on one of the statutory registers referred to, which would enable a person to sign statutory certificates of compliance as provided for under the new regulations.

There is no question of persons who are not included on the statutory registers being permitted to sign statutory certificates of compliance.

Waste Management

 691. Deputy Patrick O'Donovan Information on Patrick O'Donovan Zoom on Patrick O'Donovan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan his plans to address the situation as outlined in the recent Environmental Protection Agency report on urban waste water, which states that up to forty two urban areas have untreated or partially treated effluent being discharged into water courses; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13522/14]

 711. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan Information on Thomas P. Broughan Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan the actions that will be taken by his Department in consultation with the newly established Irish Water to address the recommendations made by the Environmental Protection Agency in its report entitled Focus on Urban Waste Water Treatment in 2012, particularly to increase the number of treatment plants in compliance with European Union directives on secondary treatment for waste water; and if he is concerned that the EPA identified, among other things, that forty two areas had no waste water treatment plants and are discharging raw sewage. [13773/14]

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. 691 and 711 together.

  In its report Focus on Urban Waste Water Treatment in 2012, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) records the continuation of the trend of improved performance in waste water treatment over recent years but it also underlines the need for continued investment to address enduring infrastructural deficiencies and for improvements in operational performance. While there has been considerable Exchequer investment in waste water treatment infrastructure in recent years, clearly that investment has not been sufficient and the report confirms where future investment is required.

  On 1 January 2014, Irish Water assumed responsibility for public water services. The establishment of Irish Water and the reform of water services provision are intended to deliver a new more sustainable funding model for the sector. Irish Water will be able to source much needed finance which can then be invested to address the remaining infrastructure deficits highlighted by the EPA report. I am also confident that Irish Water will eliminate the inadequate management practices which the EPA’s report has highlighted as contributing to one third of sewage plant incidents.

  The Water Services (No. 2) Act 2013 requires Irish Water to put in place an investment plan setting out where it considers investment in infrastructure is necessary for the effective performance of its functions. In developing investment plans, Irish Water are required to take account of the water services strategic plan prepared under the legislation and a range of other policy considerations including river basin management plans and local area plans. Before preparing an investment plan, Irish Water is required to consult with the Environmental Protection Agency and with the planning authorities.

  Irish Water is currently preparing an investment plan for 2014 – 2016 that will provide for the transition of projects previously included in my Department’s 2010 - 2013 Water Services Investment Programme.

Local Authority Staff

 692. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan further to Parliamentary Question No. 277 of 4 March 2014, if he will clarify the term "established practice" in this case; and if he will clarify whether a general operative can apply for a promotional grade post where a third level qualification has been achieved.  [13550/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan In this case the established practice is the process by which a recruitment procedure is carried out by or on behalf of an employer, from the advertisement stage right through to the offer of a contract of employment.  At all times the employer must fulfil the requirements of employment legislation and all other legislation that may be relevant, such as that pertaining to Data Protection. As previously stated, every applicant who satisfies the minimum requirements outlined in the relevant qualifications declared by the nister is eligible to apply.

Local Authority Expenditure

 693. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan if money in a council's housing and building capital fund may be diverted and spent on other purposes including, for example, land acquisition; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13555/14]

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 Under my Department’s Social Housing Investment Programme (SHIP), capital allocations are not ified to local authorities in respect of the various housing measures, including housing construction and acquisition, regeneration of run-down social housing estates and flat complexes, the energy retrofitting of older properties and estate-wide remedial works. The allocations are specific to each measure and intended to fund approved projects and work programmes. In the case of construction projects, the capital allocations may include the cost of land where appropriate.

Foreshore Licence Applications

 694. Deputy Joan Collins Information on Joan Collins Zoom on Joan Collins 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 Sligo County Council intends to carry out dredging at the channel to Sligo Harbour; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that an application from Sligo County Council for a licence under the Foreshore Act 1933 to undertake the dredging works at the harbour was submitted to his Department on 28 February 2013; when he will grant the licence; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Sligo County Council cannot proceed to seek grant aid for the dredging until such time as the foreshore licence is granted by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter.  [13560/14]

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 application by Sligo County Council for a licence under the Foreshore Act 1933 to carry out dredging works at Sligo Harbour is currently being assessed by my Department. The application is being assessed in the context of the relevant regulatory framework including obligations arising under the EU Birds and Habitats Directives. Following the conclusion of that assessment and subject to my Department agreeing recommended site specific conditions and financial considerations with the applicant, I expect to be in a position to make a determination on the application before the end of April. Funding of the project is a matter for Sligo County Council.

Departmental Reports

 695. Deputy Billy Kelleher Information on Billy Kelleher Zoom on Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan further to Parliamentary Question No.139 of 12 March 2014, the reason he has not referred the question asked to the agencies under the aegis of his Department as is done by other Ministers in receipt of the question; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13591/14]

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Phil Hogan): Information on Phil Hogan Zoom on Phil Hogan I refer to the reply to Question No. 139 of 12 March 2014. Reports/reviews/studies commissioned by the agencies under the aegis of my Department are a day-to-day operational matter for the bodies concerned and are therefore not collated centrally by my Department.


Last Updated: 24/10/2016 15:31:07 First Page Previous Page Page of 118 Next Page Last Page