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 Header Item Written Answers Nos. 590-609
 Header Item Housing Provision
 Header Item Planning Issues
 Header Item Housing Provision
 Header Item Housing Policy
 Header Item Home Loan Scheme
 Header Item Public Spending Code
 Header Item Planning Guidelines
 Header Item Irish Water Remit
 Header Item Housing Assistance Payment
 Header Item Local Authority Contracts
 Header Item Hedge Cutting Season
 Header Item Údarás na Gaeltachta
 Header Item National Monuments
 Header Item National Monuments
 Header Item Údarás na Gaeltachta

Tuesday, 5 March 2019

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 980 No. 4

First Page Previous Page Page of 91 Next Page Last Page

Written Answers Nos. 590-609

Housing Provision

 590. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the number of units funded under the social housing current expenditure programme, SHCEP, at the end of 2018, in tabular form; the number of units that will end in the ownership of an approved housing body, AHB, or local authority; the annual cost of these leases in 2018; the number of units that will remain in the ownership of private interests; and the annual cost of these leases in 2018. [10498/19]

 594. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the type of leases used in SHCEP leases of privately owned units; the length of time of the lease or range of times in use; if the leases allow the owner to withdraw from the lease before its due date; if so the grounds for same; whether the leases include an option to buy; and if so, the point at which such options can be included. [10575/19]

 595. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the number of social housing current expenditure programme, SHCEP, leases brought on stream each year since the funding schemes inception by those units permanently in private ownership and those that will end up in the ownership of local authorities and approved housing bodies; and the annual cost of each category of lease. [10576/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy I propose to take Questions Nos. 590, 594 and 595 together.

  The Social Housing Current Expenditure Programme (SHCEP) supports the delivery of social housing by providing financial support to local authorities for the leasing of houses and apartments. Dwellings under the scheme come from a number of different sources including private owners, Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs), Part V and the NAMA Special Purpose Vehicle (NARPS).

  Long term lease arrangements, including the enhanced lease, of privately owned dwellings can be entered into by either local authorities or AHBs. Under these arrangements the local authority or AHB acts as the landlord to the tenant. The terms of these agreements are set out in standard template agreements provided by my Department which must be used by all local authorities and AHBs. Agreements may be entered into for periods of between 10 to 25 years in duration; availability agreements under the CALF scheme can be up to 30 years in duration. There are no break clauses provided for in the lease and there are only limited circumstances in which the lease can be terminated by either party. These relate to the performance of the obligations set out in the lease clauses, e.g. a local authority can terminate a lease where the property is uninhabitable due to fire or flood damage; an owner can terminate a lease where the rent is not paid by the local authority.  

  Under the long term leasing arrangement, the dwelling can be sold by the owner during the lease term, subject to the leasehold interest and the consent of the local authority or AHB. As such, the owner of the property changes but the lease, and the tenant, are unaffected. There is no option to purchase the property under the long term lease or enhanced lease arrangements; however, an option to purchase may have been included in some long term leases by local authorities in the early stages of the leasing programme. It is a matter for each local authority if they wish to purchase the property at the end of the lease term, should it become available to buy. 

  Local authorities may also enter into availability arrangements with private owners whereby an owner makes their property available to tenants of the local authority for a defined period. Under this type of arrangement, the owner of the property acts as the landlord to the tenant and performs all the landlord obligations. These agreements are for periods of between 1 to 10 years and termination of the agreement is governed by the provisions of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (as amended). There is no option to purchase the property in these agreements; however, as with the long term lease, it is a matter for each local authority if they wish to purchase the property at the end of the lease term, should it become available to buy. 

  Of the total number of dwellings supported under SHCEP at end 2018, 36% (or 4,210) were owned by a private owner and leased by either an AHB or a LA. The remaining dwellings funded under SHCEP at end 2018 are either owned by AHBs (36% or 4,195 dwellings) or by local authorities and NARPS (28% or 3,279 dwellings). Details of the total number of dwellings funded under SHCEP at end 2018, by ownership, and cost of each category of ownership in 2018 (a breakdown for prior years is not readily available), are set out in Tables 1 and 2.

  Table 1: Total operational dwellings supported under SHCEP 2018

Year Private Ownership  LA Ownership AHB Ownership  NARPS  TOTAL 
End 2018 4,210 2,049 4,195 1,230 11,684


  Table 2: SHCEP Spend 2018 
Year  Private Ownership LA Ownership AHB Ownership NARPS TOTAL 
2018 €33,472,522 €7,112,669 €46,312,548  €12,126,909  €99,024,648*


   * Excludes administrative costs. The total SHCEP spend for 2018 was €100,392,780. This figure represents the ongoing contractual commitments of existing leases and availability arrangements at end 2017 together with the phased cost of new commitments that came into SHCEP in 2018.

  Details of the dwellings included in each category of ownership are set out as follows:

  - Private Ownership: dwellings secured by AHBs and local authorities under long term leases and availability arrangements; Part V leases (excluding NARPS Part V); the Repair and Leasing Scheme.

  - LA Ownership: unsold affordable dwellings tenanted by social housing tenants and funded under the SHCEP.

  - AHB Ownership: dwellings owned by AHBs including those that have benefited from an element of capital funded support, including CALF, MTR and the Housing Agency Acquisitions (HAA) programme.

  - NARPS: dwellings leased to AHBs and local authorities from the NAMA SPV – NARPS.

  Data in respect of additional dwellings delivered each year from 2014 to 2018 is set out in Table 3. Data in the format requested is not available before 2014.

   Table 3: Dwellings delivered 2014-2018
Year Private Ownership  LA Ownership AHB Ownership  NARPS  TOTAL 
2014 504  89  352  120  1,065 
2015 518  96  430  433  1,477 
2016 503  637  218  1,358 
2017 502 6 1,344 374  2,226 
2018 754 1 2,463 107  3,325 

Planning Issues

 591. Deputy Catherine Martin Information on Catherine Martin Zoom on Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy if he will consider making regulations requiring a person signing a consent form for a planning application on their land to provide contact details in order that the council can contact them to ascertain if the consent is genuine or not; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10506/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy The legal interest of an applicant for planning permission in the land or structure concerned has to be stated in the completed planning application form. Where the applicant is not the owner of the land or structure, the name and address of the owner has to be stated on the planning application form, and the written consent of the owner to the making of the planning application must also be submitted as part of the application.

Furthermore, an applicant for planning permission or an agent acting on behalf of the applicant is required to sign a declaration as part of the planning application form, stating that to the best of their knowledge and belief, the information provided on the completed form is correct and accurate and fully compliant with the Planning and Development Act 2000, as amended, and Regulations made thereunder.

In considering a planning application, it is a matter for the planning authority to decide if the information it receives is correct, accurate and fully compliant with planning legislation.  A planning authority may invalidate an application if it does not comply with the relevant requirements under the Planning and Development Regulations 2001-2019. 

In addition, where considered necessary, a planning authority may request further information in relation to a planning application, and also further request clarification of that information, under the 2001 Regulations. Such a request may include the submission of any information from the applicant concerning any estate or interest in or right over land, which the authority considers necessary to enable it to deal with the application, or any evidence, which the authority may reasonably require, to verify any particulars or information given in, or in relation to, a planning application.

I consider that the current Regulations provide sufficient safeguards to protect the interests of landowners in this regard. Where a landowner has reason to question the validity of a decision on a planning application, there are procedures available for appealing the decision of a local authority to An Bord Pleanála and for Judicial Review in the Courts.

Housing Provision

 592. Deputy John Brassil Information on John Brassil Zoom on John Brassil asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy if a facility (details supplied) is being used for housing allocation or emergency accommodation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10521/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy My Department's role in relation to homelessness involves the provision of a national framework of policy, legislation and funding to underpin the role of housing authorities in addressing homelessness at local level.  Under Section 10 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009 housing authorities are responsible for the provision of housing supports to households for the purposes of meeting their accommodation needs, including homeless services provided in accordance with section 10 of the Housing Act 1988. 

The allocation of dwellings is a matter for the relevant housing authority, in accordance with section 22 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009.  However, my Department has been advised by Kerry County Council that no allocations have been made to properties, nor is emergency accommodation being provided, at the address referred to by the Deputy.

Housing Policy

 593. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the original targets for housing schemes; and the number of units delivered under each scheme to date in tabular form (details supplied) [10556/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy Data in relation to social housing targets and delivery on a local authority basis, across all delivery streams under Rebuilding Ireland, can be found on my Department's website at the following link:

  https://www.housing.gov.ie/housing/social-housing/social-and-affordble/overall-social-housing-provision

  The overall social housing targets set for 2016-2021, include homes to be delivered through a range of delivery mechanisms. This includes rapid build, buy and renew delivery and the repair and leasing scheme (RLS), along with all other delivery streams, which will contribute to the delivery of 50,000 homes over the lifetime of Rebuilding Ireland. It should be noted that it is a matter for individual local authorities to determine the most suitable mechanism for delivery at local level. The focus is on delivering homes, as quickly as possible, and utilising the schemes and delivery mechanisms that work best at local level.  

Scheme Published Rebuilding Ireland Target Delivery to end 2018
Repair and Leasing (RLS) 3500 89
Rapid Build 1500 423
Buy and Renew No specific target published 350
Housing Agency Acquisitions 1,600 517


  These targets and outputs must be taken in the context of overall delivery to date under Rebuilding Ireland, which at the end of 2018 was ahead of target. 
Programme Target 2016-2018 Delivery 2016-2018
Build 10,429 11,830
Acquisition 3,905 6,781
Lease 2,825 2,620
Total  17,159 21,231

Questions Nos. 594 and 595 answered with Question No. 590.

Home Loan Scheme

 596. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the number of Rebuilding Ireland home loans drawn down in each local authority area at the end of 2018, in tabular form. [10610/19]

 600. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the Rebuilding Ireland home loan budget allocated to each local authority in 2018; the drawdown of these budgets by local authorities in 2018; and the allocations for this loan scheme to each local authority in 2019, in tabular form. [10815/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy I propose to take Questions Nos. 596 and 600 together.

  My Department publishes information on the overall number and value of (i) local authority loan approvals and (ii) local authority loan drawdowns.  Information up to the end of Quarter 3 2018, including in relation to number and value of mortgage drawdowns, is available on the Department's website at the following link: http://www.housing.gov.ie/housing/statistics/house-prices-loans-and-profile-borrowers/local-authority-loan-activity. As part of the Review of the operation of the Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan scheme my Department obtained information form the local authorities on loans drawn down to the end of January. The details are in the following table.

Local Authority Loans issued to end January 2019
Carlow County Council 5
Cavan County Council 1
Clare County Council 14
Cork City Council 1
Cork County Council 25
Donegal County Council 3
Dublin City Council 111
Dún Laoghaire - Rathdown County Council 5
Fingal County Council 82
Galway City Council 11
Galway County Council 17
Kerry County Council 6
Kildare County Council 68
Kilkenny County Council 6
Laois County Council 12
Leitrim County Council 0
Limerick City & County Council 2
Longford County Council 5
Louth County Council 10
Mayo County Council 8
Meath County Council 57
Monaghan County Council 1
Offaly County Council 0
Roscommon County Council 2
Sligo County Council 8
South Dublin County Council 29
Tipperary County Council 15
Waterford City & County Council 14
Westmeath County Council 6
Wexford County Council 33
Wicklow County Council 18
Total 575


  The final allocations assigned to each local authority for mortgage and home improvement loans in 2018 are detailed in the following table.  These final allocations are reflective of an internal rebalancing exercise carried out by my Department in respect of the approved allocations notified to the local authorities based on estimated drawdowns for 2018 as notified by the authorities.
County Councils Final Allocation 2018
Carlow 5,200,000
Cavan 2,100,000
Clare 4,500,000
Cork 6,000,000
DL/Rathdown 10,020,000
Donegal 2,000,000
Fingal 19,276,000
Galway 3,924,000
Kerry 3,075,000
Kildare 8,000,000
Kilkenny 6,080,000
Laois 5,500,000
Leitrim 500,000
Longford 1,200,000
Louth 4,300,000
Mayo 5,456,036
Meath 9,300,000
Monaghan 5,000,000
Offaly 1,700,000
Roscommon 1,500,000
Sligo 3,375,000
South Dublin 25,000,000
Tipperary 1,978,470
Westmeath 4,576,000
Wexford  7,000,000
Wicklow 4,000,000
City Councils  
Cork 1,520,000
Dublin 50,000,000
Galway 3,000,000
City & County Councils  
Limerick 2,545,916
Waterford 2,000,000
TOTAL 209,626,422


  The Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan scheme has proven to be more successful than was initially anticipated. In relation to allocations for 2019, discussions are ongoing with the Departments of Public Expenditure and Reform and Finance with regard to further funding for the scheme. My Department will be in touch with local authorities once these discussions have concluded.

Public Spending Code

 597. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy his plans to raise the threshold for the single stage approval process for social housing from €2 million to €7 million; if such a proposal is consistent with the public spending code; the engagement his Department has had with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on the matter; and if this proposal was agreed as part of the pre-budget 2019 negotiations. [10687/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy A raising of the threshold for the single-stage approval process for social housing construction projects is currently being examined in the context of a review of the Public Spending Code. This review  by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform is well underway and my Department is liaising with that Department on the matter. 

In the meantime, the existing arrangements, which covers social housing construction projects with an all-in budget up to €2 million and up to 15 homes, remain in place and available to local authorities.

Planning Guidelines

 598. Deputy Jackie Cahill Information on Jackie Cahill Zoom on Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the changes to planning guidelines he will introduce to speed up and encourage the provision of accommodation in town centres and above existing retail units in view of the fact that the current guidelines are not achieving same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10706/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy My Department has introduced a number of initiatives aimed at encouraging and facilitating the provision of residential accommodation in town centres, including above existing retail units.

  In December 2018, the Report of the Working Group on the Reuse of Existing Buildings and the Bringing Back Homes Manual for the Reuse of Existing Buildings were published. The Manual is available to download at: https://www.housing.gov.ie/housing/home-ownership/vacant-homes/vacant-homes. 

  The Manual is aimed at property owners, members of the public, local authorities and stakeholders in the construction industry who are interested in developing spaces within vacant buildings and bringing them into use for residential purposes.  It provides clear and detailed guidance on current policy and regulatory requirements that apply to this form of development.

  The manual complements new planning regulations - the Planning and Development (Amendment)(No.2) Regulations 2018 - which came into effect on 8 February 2018 and allow for the change of use of certain vacant commercial buildings to domestic use without having to go through the planning process. A copy of the Regulations is available on the Irish Statute Book website at the following link:

  http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/eli/2018/si/30/made/en/pdf.

  Furthermore, in August 2017, I announced the establishment of a new Vacant Homes Unit in my Department to drive and co-ordinate actions at central and local government levels in addressing vacancy and to support local authorities in their actions.  The Vacant Homes Unit has been supplemented by the appointment of Vacant Homes Officers in each of the 31 local authorities who have been mandated to quickly identify vacancy hotspots, particularly in areas where there is a high demand for homes, and to engage with property owners in terms of advising them of the opportunities available, including through the Repair and Leasing Scheme and the Buy and Renew Scheme, to assist in bringing vacant properties into productive use for housing purposes.

  The Bringing Back Homes manual will also support the work of the Vacant Homes Officers in helping them to clarify for developers and property owners the regulatory requirements that need to be complied with in converting vacant commercial spaces into residential use, thereby helping to maintain safe, sustainable and quality standards for homes while simultaneously reducing uncertainty and complexity.

  I am satisfied that there are a range of measures and supports available to encourage and facilitate the provision of residential accommodation in town centres, including the conversion of vacant commercial spaces over retail units for residential use.

Irish Water Remit

 599. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy if responsibility for further development and expansion of the Edenderry wastewater treatment plant rests with Irish Water or Offaly County Council. [10724/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy Since 1 January 2014, Irish Water has statutory responsibility for all aspects of water services planning, delivery and operation at national, regional and local levels including responsibility for the Edenderry Waste Water Treatment Plant.   

  Irish Water has established a dedicated team to deal with representations and queries from public representatives.  If Deputies have any queries on specific issues in relation to water services, the team can be contacted via email to oireachtasmembers@water.ie or by telephone on a dedicated number, 1890 578 578.

Question No. 600 answered with Question No. 596.

Housing Assistance Payment

 601. Deputy Robert Troy Information on Robert Troy Zoom on Robert Troy asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy the status of plans to make changes to the HAP system (details supplied). [10820/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy In terms of the administration of the Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) scheme, Limerick City and County Council provide a highly effective transactional shared service on behalf of all local authorities. This HAP Shared Services Centre (SSC) manages all HAP related rental transactions for the tenant, local authority and landlord. Once a HAP application has been received and confirmed as valid by the relevant local authority, it is then processed by the HAP SSC. On average, HAP applications are processed by the SSC within 2 working days of receipt. Any rental payment arising for a given month will then be made to a landlord on the last Wednesday of that month.

At the end of Quarter 4 2018, there were over 43,400  households having their housing needs met via HAP and over 25,000 landlords and agents in receipt of monthly HAP payments.

Local Authority Contracts

 602. Deputy Eoin Ó Broin Information on Eoin Ó Broin Zoom on Eoin Ó Broin asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy if his attention has been drawn to the allegations that Meath County Council paid moneys to a company (details supplied) for work carried out by another company from the 2008 and 2009 period that subsequently led to a Garda investigation and resulted in a conviction in relation to fraud; if his Department has carried out an examination of the circumstances which led to this instance; if he is satisfied that Meath County Council and all other local authorities have updated procedures to ensure that a similar case does not reoccur; if he is satisfied that Meath County Council has ensured that the moneys due have now been recouped from the company and that the company which carried out the works has been paid for same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [10860/19]

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Information on Eoghan Murphy Zoom on Eoghan Murphy Local authorities are independent statutory bodies with responsibility for their day-to-day operations in accordance with the governing legislation and codes. Local authorities must adhere to the rules for financial procedures and procurement in the same way as all public bodies. 

In relation to the matter raised, I understand that a review of the payments involved was undertaken in 2018 as part of the 2017 audit by the Local Government Audit Service and the auditor was satisfied that the case did not indicate any additional reasonable measures that the Council could have had in place given that the issues which arose were outside the Council's control or knowledge. The matters involved have  been the subject of an investigation by An Garda Siochana and have come before the Courts. These are the appropriate avenues for issues of the kind involved to be pursued and it would not be appropriate for me to comment further on the matter.

Hedge Cutting Season

 603. Deputy Mattie McGrath Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan the status of the introduction of regulations to provide for managed hedge cutting on roadsides and burning of vegetation; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [10358/19]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan Section 40 of the Wildlife Acts 1976, as amended, prohibits the cutting, grubbing, burning or destruction of vegetation, with certain strict exemptions, from 1 March to 31 August.

Following a review of Section 40, which included consideration of submissions from interested parties, proposals were announced in December 2015 to introduce legislation to allow for managed hedge cutting and burning at certain times within the existing closed period on a pilot two year basis.  The relevant legislation was included in the Heritage Bill 2016, which was enacted in July last year.

Section 7(1) of the Heritage Act 2018 provides that I may make Regulations to allow the burning of vegetation during such periods in the month of March and in such parts of the country as specified in the Regulations.  

I recently made a decision not to make Regulations to extend the season for the burning of vegetation into March.  This decision was taken as there would have been no basis for me to do so given the fact that the relatively dry weather during the six month period when the burning of vegetation could have been undertaken under the law (September to February inclusive) would not have precluded landowners from burning vegetation. Therefore, the existing provisions in the Wildlife Acts on burning remain in force.

In relation to hedgerows, Section 7(2) of the Heritage Act 2018 provides for the cutting of roadside hedges only during the month of August under Regulations.  Ireland has some 300,000 kilometres of hedgerow mainly surrounding fields and properties across the country and only roadside hedges are subject to the provisions of the Heritage Act - a fraction of the entirety of the total hedgerow resource in this country.  I fully recognise that hedgerows are a very important wildlife habitat, providing food, shelter, corridors of movement, nesting and hibernation sites for many of our native flora and fauna.  The change in timing of cutting set out in Section 7 of the Act should not interfere with any of these functions.   To that end, and to ensure that any birds' nests that might still be active by August will not be at risk, any Regulations made under Section 7(2) will require that any cutting in August may only be of the current year's growth and should not involve the use of heavy flails.  It is the intention that my Department will carry out studies to determine what, if any, effects there are during the pilot phase.  

I would also point out to the Deputy that both the burning and hedgerow provisions will expire after a two-year pilot period, and it follows that there will be an ongoing assessment throughout the pilot.

Údarás na Gaeltachta

 604. Deputy Dara Calleary Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if Údarás na Gaeltachta will be strengthened via legislative changes in the same capacity as Enterprise Ireland will be under Part 3 of the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2019 in order to support Údarás na Gaeltachta client companies through investment, loans and regional development and innovation grants in order to mitigate the harmful effects of Brexit.  [10398/19]

 605. Deputy Dara Calleary Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if Údarás na Gaeltachta will be strengthened via legislative changes in the same capacity as Enterprise Ireland will be under Part 3 of the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2019 and allow Údarás na Gaeltachta client companies to avail of the EU General block exemption regulation on state aid permitting maximum aid intensities for research and development projects of up to 70% for small and medium enterprises which is not permitted currently under Irish legislation.  [10399/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Seán Kyne): Information on Seán Kyne Zoom on Seán Kyne I propose to take Questions Nos. 604 and 605 together.

At the outset I wish to assure the Deputy that Údarás na Gaeltachta are working in cooperation with all other relevant organisations on a coordinated approach to Brexit. In that context, Údarás na Gaeltachta continue to work in tandem with Enterprise Ireland [EI] on an ongoing basis to ensure that their client-companies receive the same supports as those that are available to client-companies of EI. 

It should be noted that, since 2012, both agencies operate under an mutually agreed memorandum of understanding [MOU] which ensures that client companies of Údarás na Gaeltachta have access to the same range of schemes being provided by Enterprise Ireland. 

In light of this, I am satisfied that Údarás client-companies will have access to the same level of supports and resources as will be available to clients companies of EI on foot of the enactment of the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2019. 

Finally, I wish to reassure the Deputy that there is regular and ongoing contact between officials from my Department and officials from the Department of Enterprise, Business and Innovation in relation to this matter and that both Departments recognise the need to ensure that both Údarás na Gaeltachta and Enterprise Ireland are in a position to offer the same level of supports to their respective client companies. 

In these circumstances, I am of the view that there is no need to specifically include Údarás na Gaeltachta in the provisions of Part 3 of the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union (Consequential Provisions) Bill 2019.

National Monuments

 606. Deputy Jackie Cahill Information on Jackie Cahill Zoom on Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if she will request the OPW to carry out an assessment on a protected historical structure (details supplied) to ascertain its current condition and to prepare a plan for its restoration; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [10402/19]

 607. Deputy Jackie Cahill Information on Jackie Cahill Zoom on Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if she will request the OPW to remove the cover on a protected historical structure (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. [10403/19]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan I propose to take Questions Nos. 606 and 607 together.

I refer the Deputy to my reply to PQ No. 1434 of 7th September 2018 which is copied below.

The site referred to by the Deputy is protected under the National Monuments Acts and any person proposing to carry out works at or in relation to it is required to give the Minister two months’ advance notice. Any such works would also be subject to applicable planning and development legislation, for which the planning authority has specific responsibility.

I am advised that a representative from my Department’s National Monuments Service has visited the site in question on a number of occasions with the Parish Priest and the local authority Heritage Officer to discuss and advise on particular work proposals and that the Department is now awaiting the formal statutory notification required for the works.

I understand that Tipperary County Council's Heritage Officer has been in regular contact with my Department's National Monuments Service in the meantime and that proposals for conservation works at the site are currently being developed.  Once these plans have been finalised they will be submitted to my Department in compliance with the requirements the National Monuments Acts. 

As the monuments are not in the ownership of guardianship of the State, the Office of Public Works would have no function in relation to their management and upkeep.

National Monuments

 608. Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh Information on Aengus Ó Snodaigh Zoom on Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan if Ireland is a signatory of the International Charter for the Conservation and Restoration of Monuments and Sites (The Venice Charter 1964); and if so, if Ireland complies with the principals and objectives contained within. [10426/19]

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan The 1964 Venice Charter is not an agreement between State parties and there is therefore no mechanism for State ratification, signature or accession to it.

  Conservation theory and practice is continually evolving and Ireland is guided by the most up to date principles and objectives of international best practice.

Údarás na Gaeltachta

 609. D'fhiafraigh Deputy Aindrias Moynihan Information on Aindrias Moynihan Zoom on Aindrias Moynihan den Aire Cultúir, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta Information on Josepha Madigan Zoom on Josepha Madigan eolas maidir leis na na nithe seo a leanas a thabhairt cothrom le dáta i dtáblaí (sonraí tugtha).  [10452/19]

Minister of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Seán Kyne): Information on Seán Kyne Zoom on Seán Kyne Tá na sonraí atá iarrtha ag an Teachta leagtha amach sa tábla thíos:

Contae Líon Iarratais Ceadaithe Líon Iarratais nár Ceadaíodh Iomlán an mhaoinithe a ceadaíodh 
Dún na nGall 1 0 €5,000
Maigh Eo 0 0 0
Gaillimh 2 0 €10,000
Ciarraí 0 0 0
Corcaigh 0 0 0
Port Láirge 0 0 0
An Mhí 0 0 0
Iomlán 3 0 €15,000


  Mar atá ráite agam roimhe seo, tuigim ó Údarás na Gaeltachta go mbíonn siad ag bualadh lena gcuid cliantchomhlachtaí go rialta chun aon ábhar imní i dtaca leis an mBreatimeacht a phlé agus chun tacú le comhlachtaí agus iad a spreagadh le hanailís a dhéanamh ar thacaíochtaí margaíochta agus forbairtí straitéiseacha ar a ngnó a phlé.

  Ar ndóigh, san idirbheartaíocht leanúnach atá ar siúl ag an Údarás lena gcliaint, tá gach comhlacht curtha ar an eolas faoina scéimeanna atá ar fail, ach is beag comhlachtaí atá ag baint leasa as an scéim ‘Bí Réidh’ féin.

  Tuigim go bhfuil an líon beag iarratas a fuarthas faoi scéim ar aon dul leis an éileamh go ginearálta atá faighte ag Fiontraíocht Éireann ar a macasamhail de scéim Be Prepared. 

  É sin ráite, tuigim go bhfuil leas agus spéis bainte ag cliaint an Údaráis as scéimeanna eile atá ar fáil dóibh agus ceadaíodh €1.8m de thacaíocht in iomlán in 2018 do scéimeanna i leith Taighde & Forbairt, Rochtain ar Mhargaí, Tacaíocht d’Eochair Phostanna agus an Scéim Céimithe.


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