489. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the legal advice he has received in relation to the basis of the Pyrite board’s narrow interpretation of section 15(3) of the Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 (details supplied). (Question 20123/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Pyrite Remediation Programme Implementation)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): I propose to take Questions Nos. 489 and 490 together.
The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board, and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board with support from the Housing Agency. The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope. ...

490. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government his plans to improve the pyrite remediation scheme in view of documented shortcomings. (Question 20124/18 asked on 08 May 2018 - Pyrite Remediation Programme Implementation)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): I propose to take Questions Nos. 489 and 490 together.
The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board, and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board with support from the Housing Agency. The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope. ...

236. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the number of applications under the pyrite remediation scheme which have been accepted for inclusion under section 17 of the Pyrite Resolution Act 2013. (Question 18429/18 asked on 26 Apr 2018 - Pyrite Remediation Programme Implementation)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board with support from the Housing Agency. The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” for affected homeowners who have no other practical option to obtain redress and is limited in its app...

1554. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the options available to persons, who had hoped to obtain a house purchase loan from a local authority and had saved the 3% deposit required, since the abolition of the house purchase loan and its replacement with the Rebuilding Ireland home loan which has a 10% deposit requirement (details supplied). (Question 15641/18 asked on 17 Apr 2018 - Home Loan Scheme)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Following a review of the two existing local authority home loan schemes, the House Purchase Loan and the Home Choice Loan, a new loan offering, the Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan, was made available from 1 February 2018. The new loan will enable credit worthy first-time buyers to access sustainable mortgage lending to purchase new or second-hand properties. The low rate of fixed interest associated with the Rebuilding Ire...

1556. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the recent 27% year-on-year increase in rent at a student residence (details supplied) in a rent pressure zone, bringing total rent per annum to €8,695; and his plans to ensure that rent caps of 4% per annum apply to purpose built or contracted student accommodation. (Question 15735/18 asked on 17 Apr 2018 - Rent Controls)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1491, 1556 and 1579 together.
Rent Pressure Zones have their legal basis under the Residential Tenancies Act 2004, as amended.  This legislation regulates the landlord-tenant relationship in the private rented residential sector.  Pursuant to section 3(1), this Act applies to every dwelling that is the subject of a tenancy. The provisions of the Act, ...

1027. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the fact that a contractor engaged by the Housing Agency to provide samples of underfloor fill for tests to prove heave inducing pyrite is not sampling in accordance with the sampling procedures (details supplied); and his plans to address this issue. (Question 12135/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Pyrite Remediation Programme Implementation)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board with support from the Housing Agency. The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope. The full conditions for eligibility under the scheme ar...

1066. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if it is Government policy to encourage city and county councils to apply for European Investment Bank loans which are subject to interest for capital projects rather than having Exchequer funding made available to them for same; and if this policy is being pursued to keep capital investment by city and county councils off balance sheet. (Question 12936/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Local Authority Funding)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): The elected members of local authorities have direct responsibility in law for all reserved functions of the authority, including adopting the annual budget and authorising borrowing, and are democratically accountable for all expenditure by the local authority. It is a matter for each local authority to determine its own spending priorities in the context of the annual budgetary process, having regard to both locally id...

44. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government his plans to initiate an independent inquiry into potential planning irregularities at a location (details supplied) in County Wicklow in each of the years 2001 to 2012. (Question 9582/18 asked on 27 Feb 2018 - Planning Issues)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 44 and 79 together.
The compulsory acquisition of land at Three Trouts, Charlesland, Greystones, by Wicklow County Council was the subject of an independent review by a Senior Counsel that was commissioned in June 2012 by the then Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government. This review was undertaken following representations made by three elected members of Wicklow Cou...

79. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if he has satisfied himself that all potential irregularities concerning the planning process at a location (details supplied), in County Wicklow were fully addressed by the review conducted on the behalf of his Department by a person. (Question 9583/18 asked on 27 Feb 2018 - Planning Issues)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 44 and 79 together.
The compulsory acquisition of land at Three Trouts, Charlesland, Greystones, by Wicklow County Council was the subject of an independent review by a Senior Counsel that was commissioned in June 2012 by the then Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government. This review was undertaken following representations made by three elected members of Wicklow Cou...

634. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the number of secondees from companies (details supplied) who are working in his Department. (Question 5837/18 asked on 06 Feb 2018 - Departmental Staff Data)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): There are no secondees from the companies listed in the Question working in my Department.
 ...

101. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if he is satisfied that those provisions in the Electoral Acts in regard to donations to third parties for political purposes are fit for purpose. (Question 4487/18 asked on 31 Jan 2018 - Election Expenditure)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy John Paul Phelan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 101 and 109 together.
The Electoral Act 1997 (as amended) provides the statutory framework for dealing with political donations and sets out the regulatory regime covering a wide range of issues such as the funding of political parties; the reimbursement of election expenses; the establishment of election expenditure limits; the disclosure of election expendit...

109. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government his plans to amend the Electoral Acts to address the difficulties identified by the Standards in Public Office Commission in regard to supervising the provisions of the Acts regarding third parties. (Question 4486/18 asked on 31 Jan 2018 - Election Expenditure)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy John Paul Phelan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 101 and 109 together.
The Electoral Act 1997 (as amended) provides the statutory framework for dealing with political donations and sets out the regulatory regime covering a wide range of issues such as the funding of political parties; the reimbursement of election expenses; the establishment of election expenditure limits; the disclosure of election expendit...

359. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the reason the Residential Tenancies Board, when advised of a rent in a rent pressure zone that is in excess of the allowable cap, does not take enforcement or other action against the landlord, instead leaving responsibility with tenants to raise a case with the RTB and potentially face retaliatory eviction or other retaliatory action by the landlord in view of the fact that landlords are obligated to advise the RTB of revised rents in rent pressure zones. (Question 2633/18 asked on 18 Jan 2018 - Residential Tenancies Board Enforcement)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): In September 2017, as part of the review of the Rent Predictability Measures, I announced a series of measures in relation to the rental sector, including a two-year change plan to develop and strengthen the role of the Residential Tenancies Board (RTB), particularly with regard to enforcement.
Charging rents above those permitted by Residential Tenancies Acts 2004-2016 will become an offence and the RTB will be provided...

1734. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if he will request the pyrite board to increase the allowances for accommodation costs during remediation in view of the substantial rise in rents since the scheme was introduced. (Question 54807/17 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Pyrite Remediation Programme Expenditure)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the Pyrite Remediation Scheme and while the Act provides that the scheme can be amended, replaced or revoked, this can only be done in accordance with the scope of the Act.  In this regard, any proposal to revise the pyrite remediation scheme is ultimately a matter for the Pyrite Resolution Board and would require detailed cons...

262. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the local authorities that have taken advantage of part 5 of the Local Government (Financial and Audit Procedures) Regulations 2014, which provides discretion to the elected members of a council to vary the level of rate refunds on vacant properties; the steps his Department is taking to encourage local authorities to take advantage of the regulations to alter the rate of refund on vacant properties; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 53292/17 asked on 13 Dec 2017 - Commercial Rates)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): Local authorities are under a statutory obligation to levy rates on the occupiers of rateable property in accordance with the details entered in the valuation lists prepared by the independent Commissioner of Valuation under the Valuation Acts 2001 to 2015.
Legislative provision is made for the refund of rates paid on vacant commercial properties in certain circumstances.  The Local Government Act 1946 provides that wher...

263. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the claims by Sligo County Council that it submitted details of a wind farm (details supplied) to the Valuation Office for revision in 2004; if his attention has been further drawn to claims by the executive of Sligo County Council that it was unable to levy rates on the windfarm since it became operational seven years ago due to the fact that the council did not receive the valuation from the Valuation Office until January 2017; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Sligo County Council lost approximately €89,000 income in rates from the wind farm each year due to the delay in it being valued; his plans to intervene to ensure that properties are valued promptly; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 53293/17 asked on 13 Dec 2017 - Valuation Office)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I refer to the reply to Question No. 549 of 12 December 2017 which sets out the position in this matter.
 ...

267. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government further to Parliamentary Question No. 518 of 6 December 2017, the cost of services stated to be provided by a company (details supplied) to deal with defects not associated with pyrite; and the reason these costs are not borne by a scheme. (Question 53459/17 asked on 13 Dec 2017 - Pyrite Resolution Board Expenditure)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 267 and 268 together.
The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board, with support from the Housing Agency.  The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope.  The full conditions for el...

268. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government further to Parliamentary Question No. 518 of 6 December 2017, the reason €975,000 has been accumulated from a company (details supplied) in services for 1,400 houses verified for acceptance into the pyrite remediation scheme with 900 of those completely remediated. (Question 53460/17 asked on 13 Dec 2017 - Pyrite Resolution Board Expenditure)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 267 and 268 together.
The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board, with support from the Housing Agency.  The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope.  The full conditions for el...

548. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if the Secretary General and Assistant Secretary of his Department attended a meeting with a person (details supplied); if Secretary General or the assistant secretary of his department gave a commitment at the meeting to remit the previously withdrawn €750,000 local government fund allocation to Sligo County Council; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 53175/17 asked on 12 Dec 2017 - Local Authority Funding)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 532 to 534, inclusive, and 548 together. 
It is a matter for each local authority, including Sligo County Council, to determine its own spending priorities in the context of the annual budgetary process having regard to both locally identified needs and available resources. The elected members of a local authority have direct responsibility in law for all reserved functions of the autho...

549. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the claims by Sligo County Council that it submitted details of a wind farm (details supplied) to the Valuation Office for revision in 2005; if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that the executive of Sligo County Council claims it was unable to levy rates on the wind farm since it became operational 11 years ago due to the fact that the council did not receive the valuation from the Valuation Office until January 2017; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Sligo County Council lost approximately €24,000 income in rates from the wind farm each year due to the delay in it being valued; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 53176/17 asked on 12 Dec 2017 - Valuation Office)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 549 to 551, inclusive, together. 
Local authorities are under a statutory obligation to levy rates on any property used for commercial purposes in accordance with the details entered in the valuation lists prepared by the independent Commissioner of Valuation under the Valuation Acts 2001 to 2015. The levying and collection of rates are matters for each individual local authority. 
The...

550. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the claims by Sligo County Council that it submitted details of a wind farm (details supplied) to the Valuation Office for revision in 2004; if his attention has been further drawn to claims by the executive of Sligo County Council that it was unable to levy rates on the wind farm since it became operational seven years ago due to the fact that the council did not receive the valuation from the Valuation Office until January 2017; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Sligo County Council lost approximately €89,000 income in rates from the wind farm each year due to the delay in it being valued. (Question 53177/17 asked on 12 Dec 2017 - Valuation Office)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 549 to 551, inclusive, together. 
Local authorities are under a statutory obligation to levy rates on any property used for commercial purposes in accordance with the details entered in the valuation lists prepared by the independent Commissioner of Valuation under the Valuation Acts 2001 to 2015. The levying and collection of rates are matters for each individual local authority. 
The...

551. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government if his attention has been drawn to the claims by Sligo County Council that it submitted details of a wind farm (details supplied) to the Valuation Office for revision in 2004; if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that the executive of Sligo County Council claims it was unable to levy rates on the wind farm since it became operational 11 years ago due to the fact that the council did not receive the valuation from the Valuation Office until January 2017; if his attention has been drawn to the fact that Sligo County Council lost approximately €24,000 income in rates from the wind farm each year due to the delay in it being valued; if he will intervene to ensure that properties are valued promptly; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 53178/17 asked on 12 Dec 2017 - Valuation Office)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): I propose to take Questions Nos. 549 to 551, inclusive, together. 
Local authorities are under a statutory obligation to levy rates on any property used for commercial purposes in accordance with the details entered in the valuation lists prepared by the independent Commissioner of Valuation under the Valuation Acts 2001 to 2015. The levying and collection of rates are matters for each individual local authority. 
The...

30. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government his plans to resolve the difficulties brought to his attention regrading the manner in which in-fill testing is being conducted by a company (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 52265/17 asked on 07 Dec 2017 - Pyrite Remediation Programme Implementation)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the Pyrite Remediation Scheme. The Pyrite Resolution Board, with the support of the Housing Agency, is responsible for the implementation of the pyrite remediation scheme.  
In accordance with the provisions of the Act, the Board is independent in the performance of its functions, and as Minister, I have no role in the operati...

513. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the steps being taken to ensure that all persons sleeping rough are accommodated as a long-term measure rather than a short-term and reactive one over the Christmas 2017 season. (Question 51471/17 asked on 05 Dec 2017 - Homeless Accommodation Provision)

Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government (Deputy Eoghan Murphy): At last September’s Housing Summit, I emphasised the need for all housing authorities to have sufficient capacity in emergency accommodation and to have appropriate facilities in place for every person sleeping rough, on any night of the week. I also instructed the Dublin Region Homeless Executive, at that time, to set about ensuring the delivery of 200 additional permanent emergency beds by Christmas, in a range of new ...

518. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the percentage of the €2 million pro bono work that a company (details supplied) was to contribute to the Housing Agency that has been expended to date; the costs that make up this figure; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 51594/17 asked on 05 Dec 2017 - Pyrite Resolution Board Expenditure)

Minister of State at the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government (Deputy Damien English): The Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 provides the statutory framework for the establishment of the Pyrite Resolution Board and for the making of a pyrite remediation scheme to be implemented by the Board with support from the Housing Agency. The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope. Further information on pyrite and the scheme...