88. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Education and Skills when a decision will be made on an application by a school (details supplied) which requires an extension due to overcrowding; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44345/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Schools Building Projects Applications)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I can confirm to the Deputy that the school in question has submitted an application for capital funding for the provision of additional accommodation. My Department is currently considering the application and will convey a decision to the school authority as soon as the assessment process has been completed.
 ...

137. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív den an Aire Cultúir, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta cén fáth, faoi na tairiscintí nua don tseirbhís farantóireachta chuig na hoileáin, ar féidir leis an gcomhlacht farantóireachta aon táillí calafoirt a ghearrfaidh an tÚdarás Áitiúil a ghearradh ar lucht úsáidte na seirbhíse; cén fáth nach bhfuil an Roinn sásta glacadh leis na táillí sin mar chostais inghlactha ón té atá ag déanamh tairiscintí; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 44460/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Seirbhísí Farantóireachta)

Minister of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Joe McHugh): Táim ag glacadh leis gur ag tagairt do na táillí atá leagtha síos ag Comhairle Chontae na Gaillimhe dóibh siúd a thagann i dtír ar bháid farantóireachta ag Cé Chill Rónáin, Árainn, atá an Teachta.
Mar gur táillí iad seo a thiteann ar úsáideoirí na cé seachas ar an gcomhlacht farantóireachta a bhailíonn iad ar son na Comhairle Chontae, ní féidir iad a áireamh d’fhonn fóirdheontas a fháil.
 ...

138. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív den an Aire Cultúir, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta an bhfuil i gceist aici líon na scoláireachtaí atá ar fáil do na meánscoileanna ar Oileáin Árann a mhéadú go dtí 20 scoláireacht an scoil don scoilbhliain 2018/2019; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 44461/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Scoileanna Oileáin)

Minister of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Joe McHugh): Níl aon iarratas i leith na scéime seo don scoilbhliain 2018/19 faighte ag mo Roinn.
 ...

139. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív den an Aire Cultúir, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta an bhfuil i gceist aici airgead a chur ar fáil d’oibreacha creimthe cósta ar Inis Meáin an bhliain seo chugainn; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 44462/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Creimeadh Cósta)

Minister of State at the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Joe McHugh): Is cúram do Chomhairle Chontae na Gaillimhe déileáil leis an tsaincheist maidir le creimeadh cósta ar an oileán luaite.  Níl aon iarratas faighte ag mo Roinn ón gComhairle Chontae ar chúnamh chun dul i ngleic lena leithéid d’fhadhb. 
 ...

208. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the policy of his Department regarding the development of the road transport links linking Waterford and Limerick and Tuam and Letterkenny; if these roads will receive priority in the national capital programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44344/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Road Network)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): The draft National Planning Framework which is the subject of public consultation at present looks at planning policy over the time horizon to 2040.  Once the Framework is finalised, it is envisaged that the proposed 10 year investment plan will set out the projects/programmes which can be undertaken over the next capital planning period.  In the interim, the extra allocations being made available as a result of the Capital Plan Revi...

232. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if Transport Infrastructure Ireland has informed him of the projects on national primary and secondary routes that will be going to construction in 2018 based on the funding provided for TII in the budget; if it has the details of these projects; if not, when it is likely that TII will inform him of the projects going to construction in 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44458/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Road Projects)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): As Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport, I have responsibility for overall policy and funding in relation to the national roads programme and in this context my Department is liaising with TII in relation to the outcome of Budget 2018 and the Capital Plan Review.  
Within its budget, it is a matter for TII for decide on individual allocations, with the approval of its Board. I have, therefore, referred the Deputy’s question to TI...

238. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the reason it is his plan to pre-pay local authorities for work on LIS roads, as per Parliamentary Question No. 163 of 12 October 2017; if the approval of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has been given for this decision; his views on whether local authorities may not live up to commitments they may give regarding the completion of works, particularly in view of the fact that a considerable amount of the funding given to local authorities in December has not yet been spent or accounted for; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44459/17 asked on 19 Oct 2017 - Local Improvement Scheme Administration)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): In the past, Local Improvement Schemes were mainly run towards the end of the year when the main public roads programmes were winding down. The LIS roads were completed through a concentrated effort over a relatively short period of time. 
In September of this year, I re-launched the Local Improvement Scheme, with an allocation of €10 million for 2017. Funding was allocated to Local Authorities on the basis of listings of proj...

41. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of ceremonial public events that the Defence Forces have participated in alongside members of other military forces, excluding those events associated with our peacekeeping obligations, to date in 2017; the locations where these events took place; the military forces involved; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43812/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Defence Forces Ceremonies)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The Defence Forces have provided ceremonial support alongside members of other military forces in a number of ceremonial public events both here and abroad to date in 2017.
The level of participation is determined by my Department in consultation with the Military authorities and is dependent on the scale of the event in question and the availability of Military resources.
On 30 March 2017 in Ballyhaunis, the Defence Forces part...

46. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the contacts he and his Department have had with the EU institutions and also with other EU member states in the past six months; the nature of their discussions on defence matters; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43811/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Common Security and Defence Policy)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): There is significant ongoing engagement by Ireland with the EU Institutions and with other EU member States on the important area of security and defence. These meetings take place both bilaterally, and within the institutional framework of the European External Action Service, the EU Military Committee and the European Defence Agency.
My officials participate in all meetings of the Political and Security Committee (PSC), the P...

66. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the policy of her Department regarding the development of crèches and preschools in the Gaeltacht which operate through the medium of the Irish language; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43467/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Child Care Services Provision)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): I propose to take Questions Nos. 66 and 67 together.
My Department recognises that there is a need to provide supports in the Gaeltacht, and throughout the country, in relation to Irish language needs in the early years sector. This will include appropriate education and training materials and resources for practitioners and services. 
I established a subgroup of the Early Years Forum, which includes members from Comhar Naíonra...

67. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the policy of her Department regarding the development of crèches and preschools inside and outside the Gaeltacht which operate through the medium of the Irish language; the discussions she has had on this matter with the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43466/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Child Care Services Provision)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): I propose to take Questions Nos. 66 and 67 together.
My Department recognises that there is a need to provide supports in the Gaeltacht, and throughout the country, in relation to Irish language needs in the early years sector. This will include appropriate education and training materials and resources for practitioners and services. 
I established a subgroup of the Early Years Forum, which includes members from Comhar Naíonra...

564. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection when payment will issue in respect of a carer’s allowance application by a person (details supplied) in County Galway; the reason for the delay in issuing the payment in view of the fact that it has been with the payments and maintenance section for a significant period of time; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43481/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Carer’s Allowance Payments)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): Carer’s benefit (CARB) is a payment made to insured people who leave the workforce to care for a person(s) in need of full-time care and attention. 
A person can be considered to be providing full-time care and attention where they are engaged in employment, self-employment or on training courses outside the home for a maximum of 15 hours per week, provided that they can show to the satisfaction of a deciding officer ...

569. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if she will examine a case in which a person (details supplied) was awarded disability allowance but had the contributions to apply for invalidity pension; if she will take into consideration that the person has subsequently been awarded invalidity pension following the advice from this Deputy’s office to apply for same; if arrears will issue in respect of invalidity pension in view of the fact the person had the contributions for invalidity pension and was on a reduced rate of disability allowance due to means; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43548/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Invalidity Pension Payments)

Minister of State at the Department of Social Protection (Deputy Finian McGrath): Backdating of the Invalidity Pension claim of the lady concerned has been considered and the claim has now been awarded from 08 November 2012, i.e. from the first Thursday following receipt of her Disability Allowance application. Arrears for the period 08 November 2012 to 10 May 2017 (less any overlapping social welfare payment and/or outstanding overpayment) will issue shortly to her nominated bank account. She...

587. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if she will examine a case in which a person (details supplied) was awarded an increase for a qualified adult; if the fact the person did not know they were entitled to an increase for a qualified adult will be considered; if backdating can be made on same; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43944/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - State Pension (Contributory) Eligibility)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): Increase for a Qualified Adult on a State Pension (contributory) payment is a means tested payment. 
The person concerned applied for an increase for qualified adult on their state pension (contributory) on 2 August 2017. The increase was awarded with effect from 2 June 2017, as prior to that date the qualified adult was in receipt of state pension (non-contributory) in their own right at a higher rate. 
I hope thi...

9. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the amount drawn down under the microfinance scheme for businesses since its inception; the number of businesses assisted; the number of jobs created to date by this scheme; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42761/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Small and Medium Enterprises Data)

Deputy Thomas P. Broughan: When the Minister and the Minister of State are rambling around the country, they always say that access to working capital is the key issue for SMEs. How are Microfinance Ireland and credit schemes for indigenous companies performing, in particular the credit guarantee scheme, CGS, 2017? The counter guarantee scheme still awaits the publication of a statutory instrument.
The Government announced a new €300 million Brexit fund. How will that operate in particular to...

24. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the policies she has to ensure that employment is increased outside the five main urban centres; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42760/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Action Plan for Rural Development)

Tánaiste and Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): The Regional Action Plan for Jobs initiative is one of the Department’s key policy responses to supporting job creation in all areas of the country, and is crucial to the Government in meeting the ambition to create an additional 200,000 jobs – 135,000 of which are outside Dublin – by 2020. 
The Regional Action Plans do not distinguish between urban and rural areas – their focus is on specific initiatives ...

76. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív den an Aire Oideachais agus Scileanna an bhfuil meastóireacht déanta ag a Roinn ar an iarratas ó Bhord Oideachais agus Oiliúna na Gaillimhe agus Ros Comáin ar aitheantas do Choláiste Naomh Eoin, Inis Meáin, mar mheánscoil neamhspleách dara leibhéal; cén uair a dhéanfar cinneadh ar an iarratas sin; agus an ndéanfaidh sé ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 43264/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Pátrúnacht Scoileanna)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Tá iarratas faighte ag an Roinn maidir le Coláiste Naomh Eoin, Inis Meáin, le go ndéanfaí machnamh ar stadas neamhspleách a bhronnadh ar scoil an oileáin. Tá an t-iarratas á mheas faoi láthair.
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77. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív den an Aire Oideachais agus Scileanna an bhfuil i gceist aige pacáiste faoi leith a chur ar fáil do na meánscoileanna atá ag feidhmiú ar oileáin Árann mar atá iarrtha ag Bord Oideachais agus Oiliúna na Gaillimhe agus Ros Comáin; cén uair a dhéanfar cinneadh air sin; agus an ndéanfaidh sé ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 43265/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Oideachas Gaeltachta)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Aithníonn mo Roinnse an ról ríthábhachtach atá ag scoileanna na n-oileán i gcothabháil phobail agus chultúr na n-oileán, agus tá sé tiomanta go láidir do na scoileanna a choimeád ar na hoileáin. Is ar an gcúis sin agus mar aitheantas ar na dúshláin atá rompu go bhfuil tacaíocht bhreise á tabhairt cheana féin ag an Roinn do na scoileanna ar na hoileáin.
Tá na meánscoileanna ar Oileáin Árann sa Ghaeltacht. Tá sé mar aidhm ag Polasaí don Oi...

78. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív den an Aire Oideachais agus Scileanna an aithníonn sé go bhfuil dúshlán faoi leith le sárú ag na meánscoileanna atá ag feidhmiú ar na hoileáin amach ón gcósta agus an bhfuil i gceist aige soláthar speisialta a chur ar fáil do na scoileanna sin; agus an ndéanfaidh sé ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 43266/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Scoileanna Oileáin)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Aithníonn mo Roinnse an ról ríthábhachtach atá ag scoileanna na n-oileán i gcothabháil phobail agus chultúr na n-oileán, agus tá sé tiomanta go láidir do na scoileanna a choimeád ar na hoileáin. Is ar an gcúis sin agus mar aitheantas ar na dúshláin atá rompu go bhfuil tacaíocht bhreise á tabhairt cheana féin ag an Roinn do na scoileanna ar na hoileáin.
Tá sé mar aidhm ag Polasaí don Oideachas Gaeltachta 2017-2022 de chuid na Roinne tacaí...

116. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Health the number of persons waiting for MRI scans in Galway University Hospital; the average waiting time by priority one, two and three cases respectively at the hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43263/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Hospital Waiting Lists)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): In response to the particular query raised, as this is a service matter, I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly.
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155. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if special provision has been made in the tender for the national broadband scheme to ensure that the offshore islands will have priority access to high speed broadband at an early date in view of their dependence on telecommunications; if it is planned to ensure that they are provided with broadband of 100Mb or more; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43268/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - National Broadband Plan Implementation)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): My Department is engaged in an on-going procurement process to select a company or companies who will roll-out a new high speed broadband network for the State led intervention under the National Broadband Plan. This procurement process has now reached its final stages following receipt of “Detailed Submissions” from two bidders last month. Following the conclusion of the procurement process my Department will...

163. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development when the list of roads in each county to be repaired under the local improvement scheme recently announced by him will be published; the latest date for county councils to make claims to his Department in order to receive payment for these road works in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43262/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Local Improvement Scheme Administration)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): On 21st September, I announced the provision of €10 million for a Local Improvement Scheme which supports improvement works on private and non-public roads.  The funding granted was based on lists of eligible roads submitted to my Department by the Local Authorities. 
Within the budget available for 2017, it was not possible to fully support the level of demand which the Local Authorities stated they could deliver in 2017.  It i...

164. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the reason an application (details supplied) under the measure three outdoor and rural recreation scheme was not successful; the score achieved by the project; the lowest score achieved by successful projects; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43267/17 asked on 12 Oct 2017 - Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): The Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme was launched in April 2017 to provide funding for the development of new outdoor recreational infrastructure or the necessary maintenance, enhancement or promotion of existing outdoor recreational infrastructure in Ireland.  In total, 219 projects to the value of €11.4 million were approved under the scheme, to be implemented over a period of 15 months.
As the number of applications s...

51. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he met a campaign group over summer 2017 in relation to the N59 in Galway; the result of the meeting; the actions he has taken to address the issues raised by the group; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 41987/17 asked on 11 Oct 2017 - Road Projects)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, I have responsibility for overall policy and funding in relation to the national roads programme.  The planning, design and implementation of individual road projects is a matter for the Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) under the Roads Acts 1993-2015 in conjunction with the local authorities concerned. 
Within its capital budget, the assessment and prioritisation of individual proje...

55. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport his plans to re-establish CERT to ensure adequate training resources in the catering sector; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30220/17 asked on 11 Oct 2017 - Tourism Industry)

Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Brendan Griffin): There are no specific plans at present to re-establish CERT or to create any new dedicated training organisation for the tourism and hospitality sector.  Rather, projected skills demands across the economy are being addressed through a combination of measures involving various key stakeholders.  
In line with provision for other sectors, education and training for the hospitality sector is primarily fun...