42. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the status of the statutory review as required by the Dormant Accounts (Amendment) Act 2012 of the disbursements scheme in relation to the dormant accounts funds due in December 2016; his plans to carry out such a review; if the review has commenced; if not, the reason therefor; if the review has been completed; if not, the reason therefor; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8725/18 asked on 21 Feb 2018 - Dormant Accounts Fund)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): The legislation governing the Dormant Accounts Funds provides a framework for the disbursement of funds for measures targeted at socially, economically and educationally disadvantaged people, and people with a disability. 
The principles underlying the allocation of funding from the Dormant Accounts Fund and the strategic objectives to be pursued by measures nominated for funding by Government Departments are set out in three-ye...

53. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the work carried out to date to establish the reason for the level of underspending by implementing Departments in relation to community programmes of the Dormant Accounts Fund; if such work has been undertaken; if not, the reason therefor; when he plans to undertake such work; the measures that have been taken or are planned to address the situation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8726/18 asked on 21 Feb 2018 - Dormant Accounts Fund)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): The legislation governing the Dormant Accounts Funds provides a framework for the disbursement of funds for measures targeted at socially, economically and educationally disadvantage people, and people with a disability. The funding is allocated through a three-year Disbursement Scheme, underpinned by annual Action Plans which set out specific programmes to be funded each year. 
My Department coordinates the preparation of the ...

97. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Education and Skills the sum of moneys allocated by the Irish Research Council in each of the years 2012 to 2017 and to date in 2018 under the enterprise partnership schemes or employment led schemes; the amount recouped from employers in each of those years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8856/18 asked on 21 Feb 2018 - Irish Research Council)

Minister of State at the Department of Education and Skills (Deputy John Halligan) (Deputy John Halligan): The information requested by the Deputy for the years 2012 to 2017 is outlined in the table. The information for 2018 is not readily available at this stage. 
Irish Research Council funding of enterprise programmes and co-funding collected from enterprise partners, 2012-2017.
 2012 Amounts Allocated 2012 Amount Collected 2013 Amounts Allocated 2013 Amount Collected 2014 A...

98. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Education and Skills the amount spent by the Irish Research Council on public relations firms, publicity, sponsorship, promotional or advertising material in each of the years 2012 to 2017 and to date in 2018; the proportion this represents of its overall budget; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8857/18 asked on 21 Feb 2018 - Irish Research Council)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The information requested by the Deputy for the years 2012 to 2017 is outlined in the attached document. The information for 2018 is not readily available at this stage.
It is important that the IRC is in a position to communicate regarding the programmes which it operates, and to promote new programmes to prospective applicants, both at home and abroad.
Irish Research Council Expenditure on Promotion 2012-2017.
 2012 Per...

189. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the membership, names and qualifications of the selection panel for the collaborative forum in relation to the Commission of Investigation into the Mother and Baby Homes; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8920/18 asked on 21 Feb 2018 - Mother and Baby Homes Inquiries)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): As I advised the House last week, I am in the process of setting up the Selection Panel to oversee the independent selection of representatives to a Collaborative Forum of former residents of mother and baby homes and related institutions.
The establishment of the Collaborative Forum is a new approach in the State’s response to the theme of “nothing about us without us” which emerged from my consultations with former residents a...

33. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if his attention has been drawn to the progress made on the roll-out of park and ride facilities in Galway city; the sites identified; the completion date for the roll-out in view of the fact these objectives were first identified in the city development plan in 2005; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7742/18 asked on 15 Feb 2018 - Park and Ride Facilities)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to public transport. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including provision of park and ride facilities across the country.  
As the Deputy is aware, Park & Ride is a key component of the Galway Transport Strategy (GTS)published by Galway City Council and Galway County Council in 2016...

52. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if his attention has been drawn to correspondence copied to the NTA on 25 October 2017 by the ambassador of France to Ireland outlining serious concerns about the bicycle scheme in Galway city; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7741/18 asked on 15 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.  
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and expansion of existing and proposed bike schemes fall under the remit of the National Transport Authority (NT...

128. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Education and Skills the extent to which each of the recommendations of the report of the expert group, Higher Education Authority, HEA, national review of gender equality in Irish higher education institutions, has been implemented in each institution, in tabular form; the timeframe for the implementation of each recommendation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7851/18 asked on 15 Feb 2018 - Gender Equality)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 128 and 129 together.
The HEA national review of gender equality in Irish higher education institutions, which was published in June 2016, contained a list of 61 recommendations; 22 of which were for implementation by higher education institutions. None of the recommendations was mandatory. I have attached a list of these recommendations and their associated timelines for the Deputy’s information. 
It w...

129. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Education and Skills the consideration given to a retrospective analysis of gender equality issues in third level institutions; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7852/18 asked on 15 Feb 2018 - Gender Equality)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 128 and 129 together.
The HEA national review of gender equality in Irish higher education institutions, which was published in June 2016, contained a list of 61 recommendations; 22 of which were for implementation by higher education institutions. None of the recommendations was mandatory. I have attached a list of these recommendations and their associated timelines for the Deputy’s information. 
It w...

149. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality further to Parliamentary Question No. 170 of 1 February 2018, the details of the 10,000 advice and assistance services provided to distressed borrowers up to mid-January 2018 by the Abhaile scheme in terms of court circuits, numbers of vouchers provided to solicitors and the average value of the vouchers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7887/18 asked on 15 Feb 2018 - Mortgage Resolution Processes)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): As the Deputy will be aware, Abhaile is the Government’s national Mortgage Arrears Resolution Service. It provides insolvent borrowers who are at risk of losing their home with a range of free expert services and supports, including professional legal and financial advice and assistance, to help them identify and put in place solutions to their arrears, and wherever possible, to remain in their homes.  
Up to 19th of January 2018, Abh...

117. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Education and Skills the status of all gender discrimination proceedings involving female lecturers at NUI Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7625/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Gender Equality)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): NUI Galway is an autonomous body within the meaning of the Universities Act 1997. Under the Act, the University is an autonomous body for the purposes of staffing, appointments and dispute resolution in relation to personnel matters subject to the provisions of the Equal Status Acts 2010-2015 and other general employment legislation.  Therefore, I am not in a position to comment on the status of any proceedings of the type referred to by...

163. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Health when Parts 2 and 3 of the Children and Family Relationships Act 2015 will be commenced; the reason for the delay in enactment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7609/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Commencement of Legislation)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): I propose to take Questions Nos. 163, 190 and 202 together.
Officials in my Department are undertaking the work necessary to facilitate the commencement of Parts 2 & 3, including Sections 20 - 23, of the Children and Family Relationships Act 2015. We are working to resolve a small number of technical issues in order to ensure that the processes associated with Parts 2 & 3 of the Act can be commenced. I hope to be in a position to lay the Regulations bef...

270. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, the updated subscriber and usage figures for 2017 for Galway, Cork and Limerick; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7795/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

271. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, the cost and location of the eight new bicycle docking stations in Galway city; the agency that bore the cost; the cost and location of new docking stations in counties Limerick and Cork; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7796/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

272. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, the key performance indicators in relation to the scheme for Galway, Limerick and Cork cities; the extent to which each has been met, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7797/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

273. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, the number of docking stations in Galway, Limerick and Cork cities which required relocation; the original location of each; the new location of each; the cost of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7798/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

274. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, the number and location of all docking stations in Galway city; the number and location of those in use; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7799/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

275. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, the review mechanism in place in advance of exercising the option to extend the contract; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7800/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

276. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport further to Parliamentary Question No. 82 of 22 November 2017, if there was a subsequent substitution of one or more of those companies following the award of contract on 24 April 2014 to a consortium comprising three companies; if so, the name of the company; when the change took place; the process involved in the substitution; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7801/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Public Bike Schemes)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): I propose to take Questions Nos. 270 to 276, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to cycle and public transport infrastructure. However, I am not involved in the day-to-day operations of public transport, including the management of public bike schemes.
Decisions regarding contracts, operation and any proposed expansions of the bike schemes...

58. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the extent to which each of the 29 recommendations contained in a report (details supplied) has been implemented; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7115/18 asked on 13 Feb 2018 - Fishing Communities)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): The Joint Sub-Committee on Fisheries Report on Promoting Sustainable Rural Coastal and Island Communities (published in 2014) to which the Deputy refers made a number of recommendations which concerned a range of Government policies including natural resources, marine safety and social protection.  I intend to address progress on aspects relevant to my remit as Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine.  
A number of the r...

400. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary Question No. 307 of 5 December 2017, if he has arranged for the HSE to reply; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7123/18 asked on 13 Feb 2018 - Services for People with Disabilities)

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Finian McGrath): The Government is committed to providing services and supports for people with disabilities which will empower them to live independent lives, provide greater independence in accessing the services they choose, and enhance their ability to tailor the supports required to meet their needs and plan their lives. This commitment is outlined in the Programme for Partnership Government, which is guided by two principles: equality ...

603. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs when redress under the existing scheme will be extended to former residents of a home (details supplied) in view of the finding of a report; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7234/18 asked on 13 Feb 2018 - Residential Institutions Redress Scheme Eligibility)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): The Commission’s Second Interim Report made a recommendation that the decision to exclude certain institutions from the Residential Institutions Redress Act should be re-examined by Government. The Deputy may wish to note that policy responsibility for this scheme is within the remit of my colleague the Minister for Education and Skills and his Department.
The Government did examine these matters very carefully last year on foo...

692. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the progress made in resolving the regulatory licensing issues that pose an impediment to the development of the seaweed industry; the research carried out on the production of a sustainable management plan; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7116/18 asked on 13 Feb 2018 - Seaweed Harvesting Licences)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): There are two Departments with responsibility for the regulation of seaweed. My Department has responsibility under the Foreshore Act for the regulatory regime applying to the harvesting of wild seaweed while responsibility for the licensing of seaweed cultivation, and policy in this area is a matter for my colleague, the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine.
While I have responsibilit...

25. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Health if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the repairs at Merlin Park University Hospital have been completed for some time while at the same time the process of procuring modular theatres is continuing; the reason for same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 6373/18 asked on 08 Feb 2018 - Hospital Services)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): I propose to take Questions Nos. 25 and 89 together.
The Deputy will be aware that leaks in the roof of the building that houses Merlin Park University Hospital’s orthopaedic theatres occurred last September, necessitating the closure of both theatres in the interest of patient safety. An engineer’s report found that, in order to secure the integrity of the building, a full repair to the membrane of the roof was required. 
As the Deputy has noted, the...

28. Deputy Catherine Connolly asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary Question No. 89 of 15 November 2017, if the ambulance base has returned to UCHG; the status of discussions in respect of the base at Merlin Park University Hospital; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 6372/18 asked on 08 Feb 2018 - Ambulance Service Provision)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): The Galway City Ambulance Base has been situated on a temporary site on the grounds of Merlin Park Hospital since the summer of 2014, to facilitate the construction of a car park on the grounds of the University College Hospital Galway. The relocation initially was to be of temporary duration of 6 – 8 months. However, due to other developments at University College Hospital Galway in the interim, the hospital is not in a position to accommodate the re...