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Madigan, Josepha

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.


Wildlife Conservation

Was asked: the steps she has taken on foot of the recommendations from the curlew task force; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I thank the Deputy. In January 2017, a national curlew task force was formed, to include various stakeholders with an interest in the management of the curlew and its habitat. The National Parks ...More Button

The curlew conservation programme, which was established in 2017 to pioneer curlew conservation efforts in Ireland, will continue in 2020, co-ordinated by the National Parks and Wildlife Service....More Button

Landowners and local communities have been central to the success of the programme so far and co-operation with stakeholders will continue to be crucial to the programme's success. The efficacy ...More Button

Was asked: the extent to which she continues to be actively involved in conservation measures to protect various species of birds or other wildlife now deemed to be near extinction; the degree to which audits...More Button

My Department is responsible for implementing the Wildlife Acts 1976 to 2018, the primary legislation underpinning the protection of biodiversity and nature in Ireland. The Wildlife Acts afford pro...More Button

The legislative framework in place to protect our natural heritage is further strengthened by the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 SI No 477/2011, which also fal...More Button

Under Article 12 of the EU Birds Directive (2009/147/EC), Member States report on the implementation of the directive and the trends in bird populations. My Department submitted Ireland’s 3rd ass...More Button

These very thorough assessments were undertaken by the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) of this Department, Inland Fisheries Ireland and external experts.More Button

The aim of the EU Habitats Directive is to contribute towards the conservation of biodiversity by requiring Member States to take measures to maintain or restore natural habitats and wild species...More Button

My Department continues to drive targeted conservation work throughout the country and co-ordinates a number of EU-funded LIFE nature projects. KerryLIFE, a project worth over €5 million to suppo...More Button

The NPWS Farm Plan Scheme of my Department offers a mechanism for engaging with individuals in a joint conservation effort. The scheme will be enhanced in 2020 to support measures to protect biod...More Button

Was asked: the steps she has taken on foot of the recommendations from the Curlew task force; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I refer the Deputy to my reply to her earlier Priority Question No. 19.More Button

Wildlife Conservation (Continued)

There are two main pillars within the curlew conservation programme, one of which delivers on-the-ground action and another that progresses research on a species that has received little attention ...More Button

I thank the Deputy for her comments. I commend Our Lady's secondary school on its efforts in respect of the conservation of the curlew. The recommendations of the report are being strongly consid...More Button

Arts Council

Was asked: the details of the additional responsibilities given to the Arts Council following budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Under the Arts Act 2003, the arts are defined as any creative or interpretative expression and include the visual arts, theatre, literature, music, dance, opera, film, circus and architecture. The...More Button

These functions have not changed. In budget 2020, I announced an increase in council funding of 6.7%, bringing its annual allocation to €80 million. In consultation with the council, a number o...More Button

The funding breakdown remains a matter for discussion with the council and we are in ongoing discussion with it. The precise breakdown of the €5 million remains under consideration but we have sta...More Button

In general, the Arts Council, where possible, should be delivering all initiatives relating to the arts. That would allow the council to ensure interventions in the arts sector are complementary...More Button

It is a bit disingenuous of the Deputy to make that comment when her party cut funding for the arts by €67 million, from €206 million to €139 million, which was a cut of 33%.More Button

Given the difficult budgetary environment in the context of Brexit, the Arts Council is pleased, as it stated in its press release, with the announcement of €80 million in funding for 2020. The pr...More Button

Was asked: the additional responsibilities given to the Arts Council following budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I refer the Deputy to my reply given to her earlier Priority Question No. 21.More Button

Traveller Culture

Was asked: the funding provided for the Travellers' Journey exhibition at the National Museum in Turlough Park, County Mayo, in each of the years 2017, 2018, and to date in 2019; the funding provided for tins...More Button

Traveller Culture (Continued)

The Traveller community has a rich culture, with unique traditions and crafts which are an integral part of the heritage of this community. My Department and several of the bodies under its remit ...More Button

There is nothing to apologise for in the context of the question to which Deputy Burton referred, which was transferred from my Department to the Department of Justice and Equality. The Deputy ref...More Button

I will just finish, a Leas-Cheann Comhairle.More Button

The details were provided, for example, in reply to Question No. 102 of 23 January 2018 from Deputy Bríd Smith.More Button

I am sorry Deputy Burton feels that way, but it is a technical matter between departmental-----More Button

I beg to differ with Deputy Burton. It is certainly not coloured by my own views on Travellers. I am sure Deputy Burton is not suggesting that. We have written back to the Ceann Comhairle on the...More Button

This is extremely important for the Traveller community.More Button

Just to finish-----More Button

I just want to finish by saying-----More Button

-----I was present in the Dáil in March 2017 when the previous Taoiseach, Deputy Enda Kenny, allowed ethnicity for the Traveller community.More Button

I was just finishing my sentence.More Button

He recognised it.More Button

Yes, it was recognised.More Button

It was recognised.More Button

Noted.More Button

Urban Development

Was asked: if she has held discussions with Dublin City Council regarding the renovation of a number of historic markets in Dublin such as the Iveagh Market on Francis Street; and if she will make a statement...More Button

My role with regard to the protection and management of our architectural heritage is set out in the provisions of relevant legislation, as are the roles of local authorities and the responsibiliti...More Button

Part IV of the Planning and Development Act gives the planning authorities primary responsibility for identifying and protecting architectural heritage by including particular structures on their...More Button

The Iveagh Market is a protected structure in the ownership of Dublin City Council. It is currently on lease from the council to a private developer. Therefore, the matter is primarily one betw...More Button

Urban Development (Continued)

The Department also provides financial support for the protection of heritage buildings and historic structures through the historic structures fund and the built heritage investment scheme, which ...More Button

My officials will remain in contact with Dublin City Council about the Iveagh Market.More Button

I thank the Deputy for her comments. The Iveagh Market is not a matter for our Department, plain and simple. That is a matter for Dublin City Council and it is through the council that the Deputy...More Button

The cost of refurbishment, renovation and restoration is exacerbated, as the Deputy said, through the years of inaction from the council and the lessee. It is not fair to shift the burden of tha...More Button

We have received the recommendations about Moore Street and I know the Moore Street advisory group is of the view that there is an urgency to securing the national monuments at Nos. 14 to 17 Moore ...More Button

I know the area around the Iveagh Market well and I know the Coombe having had both my sons in the Coombe Hospital. I have made it clear that my role is only advisory on this matter and, ultimat...More Button

National Biodiversity Plan

Was asked: the measures she is taking to protect the Dublin Bay biosphere in the coastline of Fingal County Council, Dublin City Council and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council.More Button

The Dublin Bay biosphere encompasses over 300 sq. km of marine and terrestrial habitat and is managed by the Dublin Bay Biosphere Partnership, which is led by the three relevant local authorities, ...More Button

Biospheres are internationally recognised for their natural resources and biodiversity, where nature and human activities connect. They are actively managed to promote a balanced relationship be...More Button

Another important goal of biospheres is promoting research and learning. Biosphere status is a designation granted by UNESCO, as part of its man and biosphere programme, launched in 1971, where ...More Button

Was asked: the additional funding provided for nature conservation and biodiversity in budget 2020 with a particular focus on initiatives in County Clare; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Over the course of the last year I have listened very carefully to the extensive public debate on biodiversity loss and the threats to nature. The National Biodiversity Conference in Dublin this ye...More Button

Total funding for our Built and Natural Heritage sector in 2020 will amount to €62.5m, up from €54m last year – an increase of over €8m – comprising additional capital provision of €6.75m (up 44%...More Button

This funding includes €7m in funding to embark on an accelerated programme of peatlands restoration and conservation works. This programme will result in 1,800 hectares of restored peatland in 2...More Button

Additional funding of €1m is also being provided to accelerate key nature conservation and biodiversity programmes under the National Parks and Wildlife Service, which includes the recruitment o...More Button

The NPWS Farm plan scheme will also be enhanced in 2020 by doubling the fund available to €1m to support measures to protect biodiversity and assist farmers with lands designated as Special Areas...More Button

My Department continues to provide grant funding for local authority projects that promote actions contained in the National Biodiversity Action Plan (NBAP) 2017-2021. This funding includes a gra...More Button

National Biodiversity Plan (Continued)

Areas are awarded biosphere reserve status by UNESCO and are managed in partnership by communities, NGOs and local and national governments. It should be noted, however, that there are no specific...More Button

As I said, the biospheres already have statutory protection but I understand the Deputy's concerns, particularly regarding the Ringsend waste treatment facility. The latter is operated by Irish Wa...More Button

The NPWS does, and will continue to, investigate breaches of EU regulations and the wildlife Acts and, therefore, there is statutory protection. The NPWS undertakes to visit Natura 2000 sites as...More Button

We have a core role in terms of the protections in existence but Dublin Bay Biosphere Partnership is the management group responsible for the Dublin Bay biosphere. Areas are rewarded biosphere res...More Button

Ireland has two biospheres. The one in Dublin Bay is managed by Dublin Bay Biosphere Partnership, which comprises the three local authorities. The NPWS does not own any part of the area making ...More Button

Heritage Promotion

Was asked: the additional funding available for heritage measures under budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter. More Button

Over the past year, I have listened carefully to the extensive public debate on biodiversity loss and the threats to nature. The very first national biodiversity conference, which I hosted this ye...More Button

Heritage Promotion (Continued)

I thank the Deputy. Regarding bog rehabilitation and restoration, I will be working closely with Deputy Bruton on the issue of the Bord na Móna workers. Some 100 jobs will be created. This issue...More Button

We are putting significant funding towards the issue of invasive species, on which Deputy Burton has also tabled a question. Invasive species that originate in other countries are a scourge from...More Button

I am delighted to hear about the blueway. It is really important to the constituency Deputy Heydon represents. Jobs will be created in the detailed design and construction stages. As the Deputy ...More Button

The Deputy also mentioned the built heritage investment scheme and the historic structures fund. I note that in Kildare the Sean Chill and the Grattan Vault in Celbridge, the Mill Cottage in Sal...More Button

Artists' Remuneration

Was asked: the measures she is planning to take to combat employment and income insecurity across the arts sector; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: if her attention has been drawn to research by an organisation (details supplied) into pay and conditions for performing artists that showed that a third earn less than the minimum wage and that wo...More Button

I thank the Deputy. One of these questions was tabled by Deputy Penrose, who is not here. His question is linked to that of Deputy Boyd Barrett.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 27 and 29 together.More Button

 I am aware of the research Deputy Boyd Barrett has raised. Since becoming Minister, I have put in place a number of initiatives and additional supports for the arts that will make a significant ...More Button

Total funding for the arts and culture sector in 2020 will increase by more than 2%, from €189 million to almost €193 million, an increase of €4 million.  This funding will comprise €153 million ...More Button

The Deputy mentioned the Arts Council of Ireland, through which primary support for the arts is delivered. Its funding has increased in recent years and will reach €80 million in 2020.  This is ...More Button

The cumulative impact of these funding increases is further testament to the commitment to double Government spending in the arts, culture and heritage sector by 2025, which the Deputy mentioned....More Button

In July of this year I announced the completion of a review of the per cent for art scheme.  The outcome of this review led to changes to the scheme’s bands and limits which will make significant...More Button

I am re-establishing an interagency group to improve information-gathering and the collation and sharing of best practice within the per cent for art schemes.  This group will also be linked to t...More Button

Artists deserve our full support and have my full support, particularly given the significant income challenges they face. With regards to artists' pay and conditions I would like to draw the at...More Button

In addition, my Department has also worked to address conditions and employment rights in the performing arts and screen industry in conjunction with the relevant agencies under its remit. Centr...More Button

In tandem with securing additional funding, my Department has also worked to address conditions and employment rights in the performing arts and screen industry in conjunction with the relevant a...More Button

Artists' Remuneration (Continued)

My Department has also worked to address conditions and employment rights in the performing arts and screen industry in conjunction with the relevant agencies under its remit.

  ...More Button

I remind both Deputies of the Arts Council's press release on the budget. Deputy Boyd Barrett said the increase was a miserable one. The Arts Council stated that it welcomes the increase of €5 mi...More Button

Deputy Boyd Barrett mentioned our international reputation and I agree with him wholeheartedly. Our artists speak volumes about our global reputation. I wrote a novel and understand how difficu...More Button

I did not say the Arts Council was happy with the increase but rather that it welcomed it-----More Button

-----under the difficult circumstances of this budget. On the report that was cited, it should be noted that the category in question is much wider than just the arts sector. It also includes gam...More Button

I did not interrupt Deputy Burton.More Button

I will answer the Deputy's questions on the national minimum wage. Thus far, the Low Pay Commission's recommendations have been accepted by the Government, with the result that the national minimu...More Button

Cultural Policy

Was asked: the progress she has made towards establishing pilot projects to help identify the way in which a night-time culture initiative will work; the local authorities her Department has approached to par...More Button

On April 17th, I held a symposium to investigate the possibility of creative nightlife and cultural activity after hours as an alternative and complementary option to Ireland's existing rich night ...More Button

This work has significant potential to create a family friendly vibrant cultural night life to add to cultural events already taking place and to complement existing night life across the country...More Button

My Department has been working with key partners to develop an approach to support a sustainable and forward looking infrastructure to facilitate the development of after-hours cultural events. ...More Button

Officials in my Department have recently written to selected local authorities with a view to establishing local interest groups to examine the potential for night time cultural events.More Button

The main goal of these local groups will be to produce a report on what supports and impediments are currently impacting on opportunities for creative and cultural activity at night, both positiv...More Button

Was asked: the way in which she will prioritise redevelopment and renovation projects in each of the national cultural institutions under Project Ireland 2040; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Under Project Ireland 2040 - the National Development Plan, €1,188 million in capital expenditure has been allocated to my Department for 2018-2027. The detailed breakout of this investment progra...More Button

Capital projects undertaken by bodies under the aegis of my Department are appraised, planned, designed, implemented and evaluated in line with the Public Spending Code and best practice guidance...More Button

My Department is working with the NCIs to progress individual capital projects through the project life-cycle of the Public Spending Code. Decisions with regard to sequencing of investment in the...More Button

Budget 2020

Was asked: the additional funding available for the Heritage Council under budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

While the allocation for 2020 has not yet been published I can confirm that the Heritage Council will receive funding of over €6.5 million under Budget 2020. This is similar to the amount it receiv...More Button

Was asked: the way in which budget 2020 will improve income streams for those working in the arts; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

In 2020, total funding for the arts and culture sector will increase by over 2 per cent from €189m to just under €193m composed of €153m in current expenditure and €39.7m in capital. More Button

Primary support for the arts in Ireland is delivered by the Arts Council. Funding for the Arts Council has been increasing steadily in recent years and it will reach €80 million in 2020. This i...More Button

In addition, over €7m will be available from my Department next year to support the European City of Culture, Galway 2020. This is a significant sum to support artistic and creative activities i...More Button

The remit of Culture Ireland, a division of my Department, is to promote and advance Irish arts worldwide thus strengthening Ireland’s cultural profile and global reputation. Strategic prioritie...More Button

This Budget has been framed in the context of Brexit and additional funding for our arts and culture, at a time of prudent budgetary management reflects the Government’s continued commitment to s...More Button

My Department and I will continue to work with all of my Government colleagues towards delivering on the commitment to increase Government spending in the arts and culture sector on a trajectory ...More Button

Was asked: the additional funding provided for nature conservation and biodiversity in budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The total funding for my Department allocated in Budget 2020 is €354m – an increase of 5% on 2019 – which represents a cumulative increase of 17% for our culture, language and heritage over the las...More Button

Total funding for our Built and Natural Heritage sector in 2020 will amount to €62.5m, up from €54m last year – an increase of over €8m or 15.5% on 2019 – comprising additional capital provision ...More Button

I have allocated €7m in funding to embark on an accelerated programme of peatlands restoration and conservation works. This programme will result in 1,800 hectares of restored peatland in 2020,...More Button

Restoration and rehabilitation of raised bogs will provide multiple additional ecosystem services such as water and air quality improvements, flood mitigation, enhancing biodiversity, opportuniti...More Button

I have also provided for an additional €1m to accelerate key nature conservation and biodiversity programmes under the National Parks and Wildlife Service to include the recruitment of front line...More Button

The Biodiversity Grants for Local Authorities scheme which I introduced in 2018 will continue in 2020 with €700,000 allocated to assist local authorities with projects that support actions in the...More Button

The NPWS Farm Plan programme will also be enhanced by doubling the fund available to €1m to support measures to protect biodiversity and assist farmers with lands designated as Special Areas of C...More Button

I have also ensured that funding is available to continue to support Ireland’s national parks and reserves including the Tourism Interpretative Masterplan under which the Government is investing ...More Button

Over the past year, I have listened carefully to the extensive public debate on biodiversity loss and the threats to nature. The National Biodiversity Conference in Dublin in February, which I ho...More Button

Invasive Species Policy

Was asked: if her attention has been drawn to the number of invasive plants, animals and insects in the ecosystem here; her plans to assess the ecological risks of invasive species; her plans to assess the es...More Button

My Department is responsible for the implementation of the Wildlife Acts and the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 477/2011), both of which prohibit the s...More Button

Departmental Schemes

Was asked: her plans for the built heritage investment scheme and historic structures fund for 2019 and 2020; the levels of interest in both schemes in County Clare; and if she will make a statement on the ma...More Button

In April 2018 I announced a €1.2bn capital investment in culture, language and heritage under Project Ireland 2040. The capital funding for built heritage under this plan will run from 2018-...More Button

Was asked: her plans for the built heritage investment scheme and historic structures fund for 2019 and 2020; the level of interest in both schemes in counties Carlow and Kilkenny; and if she will make a stat...More Button

In April 2018 I announced a €1.2bn capital investment in culture, language and heritage under Project Ireland 2040. The capital funding for built heritage under this plan will run from 2018-...More Button

National Orchestras

Was asked: the reason she favoured moving the National Symphony Orchestra to the National Concert Hall over establishing it as a national cultural institution in its own right; and if she will make a statemen...More Button

As the Deputy will be aware, RTÉ commissioned a report from independent consultants Helen Boaden and Mediatique on the RTÉ Orchestras entitled RTÉ Orchestras Ensuring a Sustainable Future. The Rep...More Button

My Department, the Department of Communications, Climate Action and the Environment, the National Concert Hall and RTÉ considered the Report and were all of the view that the RTÉ National Symphon...More Button

The main reasons for this are as follows:More Button

- The NSO has been located in the NCH since it opened in 1981 and it provides the backbone to the Hall's orchestral music programme. More Button

- To the public at large the NCH and the NSO are already intrinsically linked and the aims of both are entirely compatible. More Button

- The recently announced capital investment plan for the NCH includes enhanced and additional facilities for the NSO, incorporating a dedicated rehearsal studio. More Button

- The support services for an orchestra and a concert hall significantly overlap: programming, education and outreach, finance, operations, marketing and communications, personnel, and fundraisi...More Button

- Finally a combined creative and imaginative overall programme strategy will greatly enhance the offering of both organisations to the public.More Button

At its meeting on 5 July 2018 the Government agreed in principle that the NSO should come within the remit of the National Concert Hall. The Government also authorised the initiation of discus...More Button

The overall aim of the Government decision in relation to the proposed transfer of the RTÉ NSO is to enable the orchestra to be established as a world class orchestra which would, with the NCH, p...More Button

In addition to this there are currently a number of other musical organisations located at the National Concert Hall - the Chamber Choir Ireland, the Irish Baroque Orchestra, Crash Ensemble, Musi...More Button

Invasive Plant Species

Was asked: the action she is taking to rid Ireland of invasive species and noxious weeds in national parks and in other parks and lands controlled by the OPW or local authorities.More Button

My Department is responsible for the implementation of the Wildlife Acts and the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 477/2011), both of which prohibit the s...More Button

Under the current legislative framework, responsibility for invasive alien species rests, in the first instance, with landowners. Throughout my Department’s 87,000 hectare network of National Par...More Button

Since 2011, my Department has invested circa €1.4m to tackle rhododendron clearance in Killarney National Park alone. This is in addition to separate investments throughout Glenveagh, Connemara a...More Button

Clearance work is carried out across various NPWS sites directly by our staff and also in certain instances by contractors. With regard to combatting these invasive species, glyphosate is one of...More Button

Eradication of invasive alien species, once they become established, is usually difficult to achieve and resources are best used to promote awareness, prevent introduction of invasive alien speci...More Button

Raising awareness of invasive alien species and the threat that they pose to native biodiversity is an important component of my Department's work in this area. In 2018, a new stream of grant fun...More Button

Wildlife Protection

Was asked: the activities of the National Parks and Wildlife Service in combatting wildlife crime; the successes in counties Galway and Mayo in respect of same; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Wildlife Acts 1976 to 2018 are the primary statutes designed to afford protection to the various species in the State and which set out the framework for dealing with wildlife crime. In additi...More Button

Wildlife crime takes many forms ranging from persecution of badgers, illegal hunting of deer species, illegal hunting of hares with packs of dogs generally known as lurchers, trapping of wild bir...More Button

While much wildlife crime is local we should not underestimate the dangers involved in investigating it as many perpetrators have links with other more serious crime. More Button

Within my Department, the National Parks and Wildlife Service has responsibility for the protection and conservation of Ireland’s natural heritage, including species protection and biodiversity a...More Button

In the period 2013 to date in 2019 some 80 prosecutions were taken by my Department for breaches of the Wildlife Acts. As far as counties Galway and Mayo are concerned thirteen individuals have...More Button

Given the concerns that I have surrounding the apparent widespread nature of wildlife crime, an internal Wildlife Crime Group staffed by field staff and senior Departmental officials which meets...More Button

I am also committed to ensuring that we continue our covert actions with other agencies, including An Garda Síochána and the I.S.P.C.A to counteract these illegal activities.More Button

Arts and Culture Capital Scheme Funding

Was asked: if the examination of options for a new round of arts and cultural capital funding has been completed further to the review of the arts and culture capital enhancement support scheme; if so, when t...More Button

I am pleased to inform the Deputy that I have recently announced a new €4.7m capital investment scheme for arts and culture centres across the country. Applications are now being invited for the C...More Button

Culture Ireland

Was asked: the funding allocated to Culture Ireland in each of the years 2017 to 2019; the projected funding for 2020; if her attention has been drawn to comments from the arts community (details supplied) th...More Button

The funding allocated to Culture Ireland in 2017 was €3.5m, in 2018 €4m and in 2019 it was €4.6m. Funding for 2020 is being finalised in the context of the Revised Estimates to be published in Dec...More Button

Culture Ireland provides support for Irish artists to travel and present their work internationally and in 2018 audience numbers of 5.5m were reached in 55 countries worldwide. In 2019 those num...More Button

Total funding for the arts and culture sector in 2020 will increase from €189m to almost €193m. This funding will comprise €153m in current expenditure and €39.7m in capital investment. This Bu...More Button

National Monuments

Was asked: the status of progressing the recommendations of the Moore Street report, Securing History 2, of 31 July 2019; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the status of her plans for Moore Street; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the actions taken by her on foot of the recommendations contained in the Moore Street report of 2 July 2019 from the Moore Street Advisory Group.More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 44, 45 and 52 together.More Button

As the Deputies are aware, the Moore Street Advisory Group (MSAG) was established to represent and work with all stakeholders (including the owner of the development site surrounding the State ow...More Button

I received the report of the MSAG - Securing History 2 - in August and would like to sincerely thank the members for their invaluable contributions during their time on the Group. I am conscious...More Button

Among the main recommendations of the report are that:More Button

- there is an urgent need to secure the fabric of the national monument at Nos. 14 to 17 Moore Street and that the MSAG confirms its support for the OPW to advance this process as soon as possib...More Button

- my Department should develop a scoping document on the potential for an increased State and State supported heritage and culture presence in the area;More Button

- an expert group should be appointed by Dublin City Council to lead the urgent regeneration of the Moore Street market; andMore Button

- the MSAG should be reconfigured to a smaller more focussed group in order to move the process forward as quickly as possible.More Button

Work is in progress on all of these recommendations. My Department is liaising with the Office of Public Works with a view to progressing the completion of the conservation of the national monum...More Button

I regard the Securing History 2 report as a significant milestone in the revitalisation of this crucial part of our capital city. The proposals put forward by Hammerson are sympathetic to and emb...More Button

I welcome the prospect there now is for reviving the Moore Street area and its market and to give Dublin a national main street and historic area to be proud of. More Button

Offshore Islands

Was asked: the status of the interdepartmental committee on offshore island development; and if she has reconsidered that island communities should be directly represented.More Button

National Heritage Plan

Was asked: if she will consider making the Curragh a national heritage area; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department, has no role in the designation of national heritage parks, which are managed by the Office of Public Parks (OPW). Any queries in respect to such a designation should be pursued with...More Button

The IUCN, also known as the World Conservation Union which is affiliated to the United Nations, is the international authority which sets the criteria for the protected areas of the world. All of...More Button

Our 6 existing National Parks account for circa 65,000 hectares with another almost 22,000 hectares of nature reserves and other heritage sites. The existing National Parks are managed from a con...More Button

However, as part of my Department’s continuing commitment and contribution to protecting our heritage and improving our tourism and recreation product, we have been exploring ways to optimise the...More Button

In this context, it should be noted that in late 2016 my Department negotiated the extension of Wicklow Mountains National Park by purchasing almost 4,900 acres of Dublin Uplands at Glenasmole in...More Button

In 2017 the entire Wild Nephin area was consolidated into the ownership of the National Parks and Wildlife Service. This creates a State – Owned wilderness project of over 11,000 hectares and aim...More Button

My Department, in conjunction with Fáilte Ireland, launched a strategic partnership in 2017 with a view to growing tourism revenues in the rural areas where the parks are located and increasing I...More Button

The investment in our National Parks will create memorable and meaningful experiences of Ireland’s landscapes, wildlife and culture. This will be done though sensitive design and the development ...More Button

In this regard, a provision of some €5million in funding, for 32 individual projects across the network of NPWS sites, was announced earlier this year as part of the Rural Regeneration Developmen...More Button

City of Culture Initiative

Was asked: the status of progress in respect of Galway 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

I was delighted to officiate at the launch of the Galway 2020 cultural programme on 18 September last. It was wonderful to see Eyre Square come to life with the large crowd in attendance and the br...More Button

As the Deputy is aware, the cultural programme that was launched that evening is arranged according to the old Celtic calendar with over 1900 events spread over the course of the year, starting w...More Button

Following the recent third and final review by the EU Expert Monitoring Panel, Galway 2020 was also recommended for the prestigious Melina Mercouri Prize of €1.5 million. The EU Commission will m...More Button

Under the terms of the Performance Delivery Agreement between my Department and Galway 2020, a quarterly financial and management report is received in advance of a formal monitoring meeting betw...More Button

At the most recent meeting in September, my Department was advised that the cultural projects are proceeding according to target; the major sponsorship drive is continuing with over the 500 compa...More Button

As we are now a little over 100 days out from the Opening Ceremony for Galway 2020, I am looking forward to a truly memorable, once in a lifetime year for all concerned.More Button

Was asked: further to Parliamentary Question No. 62 of 16 January 2019, the breakdown of sponsorship raised by Galway 2020 to date; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Galway 2020 commenced the rollout of a largescale fundraising drive earlier this year with leading cultural production company, Artichoke, working with Galway 2020 to secure fundraising and sponsor...More Button

To date, over €1.7m has been secured in sponsorship. This includes both cash and in-kind support. More Button

Notable amongst these was the announcement on 31 July last that Galway 2020 had entered into a significant corporate partnership with Medtronic. The partnership sees Medtronic become the officia...More Button

In addition to this, the current value of the fundraising and partnerships pipeline is €3.2m – this includes a combination of commercial as well as trusts and foundations, comprising funds propos...More Button

Galway 2020’s fundraising team continues to engage with local, national and international businesses very positively and effectively, following up on pledges of support made as well as contacting...More Button

The process to negotiate and agree packages with fundraising partners continues to take time to finalise for each individual business, however the overall feedback from partners is positive and t...More Button

Waterways Ireland Funding

Was asked: the capital funding allocated to Waterways Ireland for 2019; the projected expenditure at year end; the proposed allocation for 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Waterways Ireland is responsible for the management, maintenance, development and restoration of 1,000 km of the inland navigable waterway system throughout the island, principally for recreational...More Button

Waterways Ireland is co-funded by my Department and the Department for Infrastructure in Northern Ireland. The current expenditure of the body is funded 85% by my Department and 15% by the Depart...More Button

Waterways Ireland's work programmes are critical to providing a safe and high quality recreational environment for the public, whilst also preserving the industrial and environmental heritage of ...More Button

The amount of capital funding allocated to Waterways Ireland from my Department's Vote for 2019 is €4,380,000 - an increase of €800,000 on the 2018 allocation.More Button

Waterways Ireland anticipates spending the full allocation by year end. More Button

The Estimates for 2020 provide for an allocation of €25,663,000 for Waterways Ireland, made up of €21,283,000 in Current funding and €4,380,000 in Capital funding. This is an overall increase of ...More Button

  Question No. 52 answered with Question No. 44.More Button

Departmental Policy Reviews

Was asked: the status of the draft national policy for architecture and the built environment.More Button

My Department is currently preparing a discussion document for consultation on a new National Policy on Architecture and I intend to launch the public consultation phase in the coming weeks. This o...More Button

The discussion document for the consultation phase was prepared by my officials of my Department in close consultation with a committee representing the Department of Housing, Planning and Local ...More Button

The Policy will be informed by the feedback we receive from the consultation phase as well as by a review of the previous policy, which placed an emphasis on sustainable development of the enviro...More Button

It is my intention that a new National Policy on Architecture will play an integral part in implementing the Project Ireland 2040 vision, providing policy actions that will encourage best quality...More Button

Heritage Sites

Was asked: the degree to which she can maximise the use of national heritage sites for educational and tourism purposes while ensuring the protection of sites involved and their integrity in line with nationa...More Button

I thank the Deputy for his ongoing interest in my Department's efforts to conserve, present and promote the unique range of cultural and heritage assets, both natural and built, that Ireland is for...More Button

My replies to the Deputy's previous Question No. 65 on 16 January 2019, Questions Nos. 216, 217 and 220 on 10 April 2019 and Question No. 31 on 19 September 2019 provide a good insight into the w...More Button

My reply to Question No. 33 on 19 September 2019 highlighted the work being done in relation to our National Parks, including investment in Wild Nephin-Ballcroy National Park and Connemara Nation...More Button

My Department frequently liaises with other relevant bodies and agencies on an ongoing basis to determine what potential projects could benefit from available funding schemes such as the RRDF, an...More Button

My Department’s Built Heritage Investment Scheme (BHIS) assists the repair and conservation of protected structures - in public and private ownership - on the local authority Record of Protected ...More Button

As the representative for the World Heritage Convention on behalf of Ireland, my Department is responsible for the submission of nomination documentation to UNESCO for inclusion of properties on ...More Button

Arts Funding

Was asked: the funding allocated to the Arts Council in each of the years 2017 to 2019; the projected funding for 2020; if her attention has been drawn to comments from the arts community (details supplied) t...More Button

The table below shows the funding allocated to the Arts Council in each of the four years 2017 to 2020.

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Special Amenity Areas

Was asked: if she will report on conservation measures in the special amenity wilderness areas of the Howth peninsula; and if further consideration is being given to designating this unique landscape and topo...More Button

With regard to my Department's function and remit, there is no such designation as a Special Amenity Wilderness Area. However, I understand that in 1999 the local authority, as part of the Plannin...More Button

Nevertheless, the area the Deputy refers to is designated as both a Special Area of Conservation and a Special Protection Area (Howth Head SAC and Howth Head Coast SPA) and as such is afforded st...More Button

As previously outlined to the Deputy in my response to his parliamentary question no 8549/19 earlier this year, my Department has no plans to create a national park in the wilderness area of How...More Button

Departmental Funding

Was asked: the funding that has been provided to arts and culture centres in counties Carlow and Kilkenny; the capital investment that will be available in the coming years; and if she will make a statement o...More Button

The table below shows the funding provided by my Department to arts and culture centres in counties Carlow and Kilkenny since 2016.

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Was asked: the status of the refurbishment of a centre (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The centre to which the Deputy refers was awarded a significant capital grant for the enhancement and refurbishment of this cultural venue in 2017. This grant was awarded under the Arts and Cultur...More Button

Officials in my Department are in active correspondence with the project developers in relation to the progress on the project, which is currently at planning and tendering stage. As with all ca...More Button

Capital Expenditure Programme

Was asked: the details of each State infrastructure project that is in development or is due for completion in 2019 in which it is in excess of the budget assigned to the project for its current stage to date.More Button

My Department has been allocated nearly €1.2 billion in capital expenditure over the course of the National Development Plan, 2018-2027, as part of Project Ireland 2040. To direct this investment, ...More Button

  Question No. 59 answered with Question No. 30.More Button

Abbey Theatre

Was asked: her plans and the proposed timeline for the renovation of the Abbey Theatre; the funding allocated to the theatre arising from budget 2020; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

In April last year, I launched my Department's sectoral Plan - Investing in Our Culture, Language and Heritage 2018 – 2027 in which the Abbey Theatre's redevelopment project is included. The plan s...More Button

This capital investment is especially important in relation to the Abbey Theatre, as the building in which the National Theatre is housed is over 50 years old and is widely recognised as deficien...More Button

Last week, I was delighted to announce the progression of the Abbey Theatre Redevelopment Project to detailed appraisal stage. The €80m indicative investment in the project will facilitate a fitt...More Button

The project is still at an early stage but the Abbey Theatre will now engage experts to prepare the detailed appraisal documentation required under the Public Spending Code, which will include ec...More Button

Having a world-class cultural and heritage infrastructure will strengthen our international reputation and I look forward to seeing the Abbey Theatre Redevelopment Project progress over the comin...More Button

Ulster Canal Restoration Project

Was asked: the capital funding allocated for the restoration of the Ulster Canal in 2019; the expenditure to date; the works undertaken; the expected expenditure by year end; the funding proposed for further ...More Button

In July 2007, the North South Ministerial Council agreed to a proposal to restore a 13km section of the Ulster Canal from Upper Lough Erne to Clones. This project is important for the border region...More Button

Government approval for Phase 1 of this project, to restore a 2.5 km stretch of the Ulster Canal from Upper Lough Erne in County Fermanagh to the International Scout Centre at Castle Saunderson n...More Button

Work on Phase 1 is nearing completion and includes dredging works to the River Finn, construction of a new navigation arch at Derrykerrib Bridge and installation of a new mooring facility at Cast...More Button

Waterways Ireland anticipates expenditure in 2019 of €53,500 to complete payment for works at Derrykerrib and €100,000 for construction works for Castlesaunderson public moorings.More Button

The expenditure to date, including commitments amounts to €3,960,000 which is fully funded by my Department.More Button

Waterways Ireland has worked with Cavan County Council in relation to recreational amenities at the Council site at Castlesaunderson, including a public jetty. A contract for the construction of...More Button

In relation to the Ulster Canal Phase 2 - Restoration of Ulster Canal Lough Erne to Clones – The Clones Terminus Project is under development with anticipated cost of €433,000 of which 75% is fun...More Button

Waterways Ireland is also continuing work with the partners Monaghan County Council, Armagh City Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, East Border Region Ltd. and Mid Ulster District Council t...More Button

Public consultation events were held in three locations in August and September 2019. Waterways Ireland and partners have also produced an Ulster Canal Greenway strategy which sets out how this g...More Button

Commemorative Events

Was asked: when she will publish an indicative programme of State and State-sponsored commemorative events under the decade of centenaries, 1913-1923, programme.More Button

Plans are well underway to mark the significant forthcoming centenaries over the remainder of the Decade of Centenaries, which include the Struggle for Independence, the Civil War, the Foundation o...More Button

My particular focus at this time is to ensure that the significant historical events that occurred during 1920 and related themes, are remembered with a rich diversity of commemorative initiative...More Button

My Department has built significant partnerships with key stakeholders, including local authorities, the national cultural institutions, institutions of learning and custodians of records, the tr...More Button

The approaching centenaries present particularly sensitive and complex challenges. I firmly believe that the cultural heritage and stories of all traditions on the island of Ireland must be pres...More Button

My plans for the forthcoming period will continue to be informed by the guidance of the Expert Advisory Group on Centenary Commemorations and developed in consultation with the All Party Consulta...More Button

National Parks

Was asked: if her attention has been drawn to the fact that the residents in the Glenamole region of the Dublin Mountains use parts of the national park in that area to graze animals and that there have been ...More Button

The National Parks and Wildlife Service was asked by representatives of the local community to endorse the installation of cattle grids at Glenasmole, Co. Dublin and issued a letter of support in t...More Button

The sites in question are at the location of previously existing, now defunct, commonage gates. Such systems were designed in an Ireland where there was very little traffic so the presence of a g...More Button

The National Parks and Wildlife Service has no issues with the installation of cattle grids at these sites. The area is designated a Special Area of Conservation for its mixture of heathland type...More Button

Hare Coursing Regulation

Was asked: if the definition of regulated coursing matches requires clubs to comply with rules 11 and 13 of a club (details supplied) regarding the open seasons order for which she has sole responsibility.More Button

Was asked: if the definition of regulated coursing matches requires clubs to comply with directive 11 of a club (details supplied) regarding the open seasons order for which she has sole responsibility.More Button

Was asked: if the definition of regulated coursing matches requires greyhounds to be wearing the proper collars in line with rule 109 of a club (details supplied) regarding the open seasons order for which sh...More Button

Was asked: the reason 19 affiliated clubs of a club (details supplied) referred to in a recent meeting of the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine were not listed in the licence sche...More Button

Was asked: her views on the interpretation and extent of the open seasons order set out in paragraphs 6.0 to 6.3 of a submission to the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine in respec...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 224 to 228, inclusive, together.

  The legislative base for both parkland and open hare coursing is the Wildlife (Wild Mammals) (Open Seasons) Or...More Button

Tourism Promotion

Was asked: the extent to which visitors from overseas are encouraged to visit cultural and-or heritage sites on a co-ordinated basis; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My Department fully supports the appropriate conservation of Ireland’s rich portfolio of heritage sites, both as important assets in their own right and to optimise their contribution to economic d...More Button

Wildlife Data

Was asked: the degree to which the number of species of migratory small birds has diminished in recent years; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the degree to which the number of various species of native birds or animals has diminished in recent years; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Was asked: the extent to which her Department monitors the number and species of migratory birds spending winters or summers here; the degree to which the species have altered; and if she will make a statemen...More Button

I propose to take Questions Nos. 231 to 233, inclusive, together.

  My Department is responsible for the implementation of the Wildlife Acts and the European Communities (Birds a...More Button

Architectural Heritage

Was asked: the extent to which reinstatement or preservation works are proposed or are in hand in respect of buildings of cultural or historical significance; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

My role with regard to the protection and management of our architectural heritage is set out in the provisions of relevant legislation, as are the roles of local authorities and the responsibiliti...More Button

In this instance I understand that the Deputy is asking primarily about supports provided by my Department for buildings of historical significance. My Department provides financial support for t...More Button

I will shortly be announcing details of the Historic Structures Fund 2020 and the Built Heritage Investment Scheme 2020. More Button

Details of these schemes, including the amounts being allocated to each local authority are published on my Department’s website and on local authority websites. More Button

In 2019, my Department has provided €350,000 of funding to the OPW to assist in the conservation and presentation of historic buildings and national monuments in State ownership. My Department’s ...More Button

The Heritage Council, which my Department funds, also provides grants for the protection and preservation of the built heritage. It is primarily a matter for the Heritage Council to decide how i...More Button

Was asked: the number of round towers in existence nationally; if each is in good or restorable condition; her plans to address issues arising; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Details of eighty six round towers are included in the records maintained by my Department under the National Monuments Acts. Those that form part of national monuments in my ownership or guardians...More Button

Other round towers may also be in local authority ownership, or may be in the ownership of other organisations or individuals. The upkeep of such structures is the responsibility of the relevant ...More Button

As they are a distinctively and primarily Irish monument type, round towers have attracted study and care from antiquarian times. I am advised that, because of this longterm interest in and commi...More Button

Arts Promotion

Was asked: the degree to which she supports the arts through the Arts Council or directly through local community groups; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

Total funding for the arts and culture sector in 2020 will increase by over 2% from €189m to almost €193m.

  Primary support for the Arts is delivered through the Arts Council....More Button

Was asked: the degree to which she continues to support the arts through musical or dramatic societies nationally in 2019 with specific reference to County Kildare; and if she will make a statement on the mat...More Button

Support for the arts is a key focus of the supports provided by my Department and its agencies. I will outline some key initiatives of relevance to 2019 in this reply.    
...More Button

Was asked: the degree to which she encourages or promotes the arts through schools; and if she will make a statement on the matter.More Button

The Creative Ireland Programme is a 5-year initiative which places creativity at the centre of public policy. The Programme is a high-level, ambitious, all-of-government initiative to mainstream c...More Button


 

 

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