24. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine in view of the fact that the normal practice in sports is to make public all doping tests, both positive and negative, and to disqualify those who test positive as it provides them with an unfair advantage, the reason this is currently not the standard practice in the Irish dog-racing industry; if new legislation to implement these rules is currently being formulated; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48395/14 asked on 18 Dec 2014 - Bord na gCon Remit)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Bord na gCon has statutory responsibility under the Greyhound Industry Acts 1958 &1993 for the control, development and improvement of the greyhound racing industry.
Bord na gCon refers positive tests for prohibited substances to the independent Control Committee for adjudication. The findings of the Control Committee can be appealed to the Control Appeals Committee. These are statutory committees established under the Greyh...

25. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if, in its reply to the Indecon report published earlier this year, Bord na gCon outlined a schedule for the implementation of the recommendations contained in the report; if he will shed light on progress made in the implementation of recommendations; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48394/14 asked on 18 Dec 2014 - Bord na gCon Administration)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): I am pleased to inform the Deputy that Bord na gCon submitted their response to the Indecon report on 10 October 2014. 
That response included a programme of action and a timeline for implementation of the recommendations in the report. The action plan is published in the “news” section on the Bord na gCon website. Bord na gCon has indicated to my Department that it is on track to meet the vast majority of its objectives for...

454. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if the Irish authorities sought a deletion of any references to Ireland in the CIA torture report in view of the fact that it has been established that Britain’s intelligence agencies were deleted at their request from the report. (Question 49034/14 asked on 18 Dec 2014 - International Terrorism)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I wish to confirm that the Government did not seek any redactions to the report referred to by the Deputy.
 ...

533. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government further to Parliamentary Question No. 181 of 11 December 2014, when he will issue a decision on the application in view of the fact that the appeal was lodged in July and that Show Racism the Red Card carries out vital racist educational programmes. (Question 49033/14 asked on 18 Dec 2014 - Departmental Funding)

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Alan Kelly): It is assumed that the Deputy is referring to Question No. 181 of 11 December 2014 regarding my Department’s Scheme to Support National Organisations.
Pobal were asked to undertake the appraisal and management of the Scheme to Support National Organisations, and, in that context, put in place a dedicated team to deal with any inquiries from applicants and to provide detailed feedback. Furthermore, an appeals proces...

20. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the way he plans to deal with the anticipated substantial extra workload on Labour Court-LRC staff arising from the Workplace Relations Bill and his plans to increase staff numbers to ensure an efficient, accessible and timely service is delivered. (Question 47998/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Departmental Bodies)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Workplace Relations Bill provides for the establishment of a statutory Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) with a full range of functions formerly carried out by the Labour Relations Commission (LRC), including Rights Commissioner Service, the Equality Tribunal, the Employment Appeals Tribunal and the National Employment Rights Authority (NERA). The Bill will also provide for the Labour Court to be the appellate body to ...

23. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the discussions he has had with his European counterparts on the transatlantic trade and investment partnership; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 47999/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - International Agreements)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership was discussed at the last EU Council of Trade Ministers on 21 November which I attended. The Council was briefed by Commissioner Malmström and took stock of the current state of play. The Council adopted a set of policy conclusions that give clear, unambiguous and reasoned political support for the TTIP negotiations. The conclusions which were agreed at Council highlight sus...

47. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Finance the reason a company (details supplied) was fined only €105,000 for breaching the Consumer Credit Act 1995, despite the fact that it has a turnover of €4.5 billion. (Question 48552/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Central Bank of Ireland Investigations)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 47 and 48 together.
The Central Bank has informed me that in any circumstance where it engages an external law firm to assist it, the Bank will ensure prior to the engagement of the firm that all appropriate checks are carried out, including a check to ensure that no concerns regarding conflicts of interest arise.
I have asked the Bank for further details in relation to these questions and it has not been able to resp...

48. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Finance the legal firm that advised the Central Bank of Ireland regarding their determination in relation to the breaches of the Consumer Credit Act 1995 by a company (details supplied); and if his attention has been drawn to conflicts of interest there. (Question 48553/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Central Bank of Ireland Investigations)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 47 and 48 together.
The Central Bank has informed me that in any circumstance where it engages an external law firm to assist it, the Bank will ensure prior to the engagement of the firm that all appropriate checks are carried out, including a check to ensure that no concerns regarding conflicts of interest arise.
I have asked the Bank for further details in relation to these questions and it has not been able to resp...

112. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of professional drivers prosecuted to date for not complying with the requirement to have acquired a Driver CPC card. (Question 48538/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Driver Licence Data)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am making enquiries with An Garda Síochána and the Road Safety Authority in relation to the matter referred to by the Deputy. I will contact the Deputy directly as soon as the information is to hand. 
 ...

126. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the objective of the incentivised regime in relation to remission of sentence is to provide tangible incentives to prisoners to participate in structured activities and to reinforce incentives for good behaviour, leading to a safer and more secure environment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48702/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Prisoner Rehabilitation Programmes)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 126 to 129, inclusive, together.
I can inform the Deputy that the Incentivised Regimes Policy was introduced on a phased basis across all prisons in 2012 and is now operational in all institutions. Incentivised Regimes provides for a differentiation of privileges between prisoners according to their level of engagement with services and quality of behaviour. The objective is to provide tangible incen...

127. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if there is a differentiation of levels of privilege, that is, basic, standard and enhanced currently in operation on the E2 landing of Portlaoise prison, County Laois, and that enhanced privileges are not a right and are in fact dependent on meeting certain criteria, for that level, notably by exemplary behaviour and satisfactory engagement in structured activities. (Question 48703/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Prisoner Rehabilitation Programmes)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 126 to 129, inclusive, together.
I can inform the Deputy that the Incentivised Regimes Policy was introduced on a phased basis across all prisons in 2012 and is now operational in all institutions. Incentivised Regimes provides for a differentiation of privileges between prisoners according to their level of engagement with services and quality of behaviour. The objective is to provide tangible incen...

128. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality her views that the progression of a person (details supplied) to the enhanced level was dependent on them meeting the criteria for that level, notably by exemplary behaviour and satisfactory engagement in structured activities. (Question 48704/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Prisoner Rehabilitation Programmes)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 126 to 129, inclusive, together.
I can inform the Deputy that the Incentivised Regimes Policy was introduced on a phased basis across all prisons in 2012 and is now operational in all institutions. Incentivised Regimes provides for a differentiation of privileges between prisoners according to their level of engagement with services and quality of behaviour. The objective is to provide tangible incen...

129. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the incentivised regime scheme regarding one third remission is mandatory for each prison and for all prisoners. (Question 48705/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Prisoner Rehabilitation Programmes)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 126 to 129, inclusive, together.
I can inform the Deputy that the Incentivised Regimes Policy was introduced on a phased basis across all prisons in 2012 and is now operational in all institutions. Incentivised Regimes provides for a differentiation of privileges between prisoners according to their level of engagement with services and quality of behaviour. The objective is to provide tangible incen...

130. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the decision-making process she relied upon to reach her decision to deny one third remission in respect of a person (details supplied); if the incentivised regimes status and reports factored in reaching her decision in these matters, or if it was a political decision. (Question 48706/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Prisoner Releases)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I wish to advise the Deputy that the application by the prisoner (details supplied) for enhanced remission was considered under Rule 59 (2) of SI 252 of 2007 (the Prison Rules). This occurred prior to my recent amendment to the Rules.
While the prisoners incentivised regime level was not taken into account, the application was considered by reference to a number of other factors including his behaviour and conduct while incarcerate...

132. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality with regard to Garda appointments, the reason there seems to be a preference provided to sergeants who were involved in office-bound duties being promoted to the rank of inspector ahead of their peers who carry out front-line duties on a day-to-day basis. (Question 48715/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Garda Promotions)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Promotion competitions within An Garda Síochána are run in strict compliance with An Garda Síochána (Promotion) Regulations 2006, as amended.
I have been informed by the Garda Commissioner that all members who apply for and are eligible for promotion are invited to take part in a competency based interview. This interview is conducted by an independent interview board comprising two civilian members and one Garda member.
The intervi...

135. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality her views on statements from her Department that there is no evidence of Irish involvement in CIA renditions when they have been provided evidence of CIA rendition planes passing through Shannon. (Question 48747/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Military Aircraft Landings)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am aware of reports going back some time that Irish airports, particularly Shannon, have been used for the unlawful inter-state transfer of detainees (‘extraordinary rendition’) by the US authorities.
The Government has repeatedly made it clear that extraordinary rendition is an illegal practice which Ireland will not accept. The US authorities have provided clear and unambiguous diplomatic assurances, at the highest level, that I...

197. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Health further to Parliamentary question No. 295 of 9 December 2014, in circumstances where a person aged over 70 years wishes to remain with his or her non-public sector general practitioner rather than parading around with his or her personal medical file to other GPs, if the non-public general practitioner’s prescription will have the same recognition and equal status as that of a public sector GP, in other words, the prescription would be completed at the same cost at the pharmacy as would be the prescription of a public sector GP. (Question 48759/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Medical Card Eligibility)

Minister of State at the Department of Health (Deputy Kathleen Lynch) (Deputy Kathleen Lynch): A medical card, as issued by the Health Service Executive (HSE), confirms that the holder is entitled, free of charge, to a range of Health Services, including:
- A choice of General Medical Practitioner from those doctors who have a contract with the HSE; and
- The supply of prescribed approved medicines, aids and appliances, subject to prescription charges.
A GP visit card holder is also entitled t...

207. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade his views on statements from his Department that there is no evidence of Irish involvement in CIA renditions when they have been provided evidence of CIA rendition planes passing through Shannon. (Question 48748/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Shannon Airport Facilities)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The Programme for Government states that the Government will enforce the prohibition of the use of Irish airspace, airports and related facilities for purposes not in line with the dictates of international law. Ireland does not tolerate and will not tolerate the use of our airspace or airports for any illegal purpose, including torture, rendition or the unauthorised detention of any individual. It has been made clear by the cur...

224. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills her views that it is appropriate that her Department is paying a connection fee to Irish Water of €1,650 for school extensions even where the pipe work is in place; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48752/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Water Charges Administration)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): I wish to advise the Deputy that the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government is the lead Department relating to Irish Water. With respect to the Deputy’s question, Irish Water has indicated to my Department that the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) in its role as economic regulator of Irish Water, will introduce a national connections policy to which Irish Water will adhere. This Connections Policy is expected i...

225. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills the reason a person (details supplied) can overcome Student Universal Support Ireland queries regarding their place of residence, in view of the fact that they share the dwelling, have no utility bills in their name, but are capable of providing a sworn affidavit from the owner of the property regarding the fact that they have resided there for the relevant time. (Question 48756/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Student Grant Scheme Eligibility)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): When considering whether a student meets the conditions to be assessed independently of his or her parents, grant awarding authorities are obliged to satisfy themselves beyond doubt that an acceptable degree of proof of independent living in the relevant period has been submitted by the grant applicant.
In exceptional circumstances, where it is not possible to produce such proofs of residence for demonstrable reasons, the awarding body m...

248. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the reason schools are being charged a €1,650 connection fee with Irish Water for their school extension. (Question 48753/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Water Charges Administration)

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Alan Kelly): Since 2001, national water pricing policy has required local authorities to recover the costs of providing water services from all non-domestic users of these services, including schools. This policy provided for charges based on actual metered consumption and is consistent with the requirements of the Water Framework Directive.
The Water Services (No. 2) Act 2013 provided for the transfer of responsibility for the...

256. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the reason the members of the Road Safety Authority driver CPC review groups which sat in 2013 were overlooked at the RSA Leading Light Awards in both 2013 and 2014, when a precedent had been set in 2012 when members of the RSA driver CPC groups, prior to that, received special recognition awards at the Leading Light ceremony for their voluntary efforts in sitting on the review committees. (Question 48535/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Road Safety Authority Campaigns)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): The Leading Lights in Road Safety Awards are organised and presented by the Road Safety Authority to celebrate the outstanding efforts of people to improve road safety in their communities. Neither I nor my Department has any role in the operation of the system or in the selection of Award recipients.
I have referred the Deputy’s question to the Authority for direct reply. I would ask the Deputy to contact my office if a respon...

257. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of professional bus drivers, category D and category D1, who were issued with a Driver CPC card in September 2013 and the number of those drivers who completed a relevant module of their periodic training prior to 9 September 2014. (Question 48536/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Driver Safety)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): The operation of the Certificate of Professional Competence system is the statutory responsibility of the Road Safety Authority.  I have therefore referred this question to the Authority for direct reply.
I would ask the Deputy to contact my office if a response has not been received within ten days.
 ...

258. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of professional truck drivers, category C and C1, who were issued with a driver CPC card in respect of those categories before 9 September 2014. (Question 48537/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Driver Safety)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): The operation of the Certificate of Professional Competence system is the statutory responsibility of the Road Safety Authority. I have therefore referred the question to the Authority for direct reply.
I would ask the Deputy to contact my office if a response has not been received within ten days.
 ...

259. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of candidates who sat and successfully passed the transport management CPC by venue to date in 2014. (Question 48539/14 asked on 17 Dec 2014 - Driver Safety)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): The information for 2014 is set out in the following table.
 CPC Centre - 2014 No. of Candidates No. of Passing Candidates Bus Éireann 10 10 Galway 30 24 Athlone 7 6 Birr 26 22 Mullingar 6 6 Letterkenny 24 17 Cavan 6 4 Dublin (Green Isle) 110 86 Dublin (Sheldon Park) 64 45 Limerick 30 22 Cork 37 31 LIT Limerick Students 42 22 DIT Students 13 4 Curragh (Armed Forces) 16 15 Enniscorthy 6 6 ...