172. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Pearse Doherty den an Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta maidir leis an liúntas is déanaí a fógraíodh an 9ú Bealtaine 2017 le cuidiú le soláthraithe seirbhíse luathoideachais Gaeltachta ó thaobh tacaíochtaí teanga, cad chuige nach raibh deontas curtha ar fáil do sholáthraí i gContae Dhún na nGall (sonraí curtha ar fáil) mar chuid den scéim seo; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 30727/17 asked on 29 Jun 2017 - Oideachas Gaeltachta)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Joe McHugh): Tógfaidh mé Ceisteanna Uimhir 172 agus 173 le chéile.
I 2014, cheadaigh mo Roinn deonta is trí bliana don dá sheirbhís luathoideachais atá luaite ag an Teachta faoin Scéim Seirbhísí Réamhscoile agus Iarscoile. B’ionann na deonta is a ceadaíodh agus deonta is suas le €15,000 in aghaidh na bliana don dá sheirbhís faoi seach.
Tá na hiarratais reatha a rinneadh i leith an dá sheirbhís ...

173. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Pearse Doherty den an Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta maidir leis an liúntas is déanaí a fógraíodh an 9ú Bealtaine 2017 le cuidiú le soláthraithe seirbhíse luathoideachais Gaeltachta ó thaobh tacaíochtaí teanga, cad chuige nach raibh deontas curtha ar fáil do sholáthraí i gContae na Gaillimhe (sonraí curtha ar fáil) mar chuid den scéim seo; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 30728/17 asked on 29 Jun 2017 - Oideachas Gaeltachta)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Joe McHugh): Tógfaidh mé Ceisteanna Uimhir 172 agus 173 le chéile.
I 2014, cheadaigh mo Roinn deonta is trí bliana don dá sheirbhís luathoideachais atá luaite ag an Teachta faoin Scéim Seirbhísí Réamhscoile agus Iarscoile. B’ionann na deonta is a ceadaíodh agus deonta is suas le €15,000 in aghaidh na bliana don dá sheirbhís faoi seach.
Tá na hiarratais reatha a rinneadh i leith an dá sheirbhís ...

331. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the reasons an application for the CLÁR programme 2017 submitted by a school (details supplied) in County Donegal was not successful; if she will provide information regarding the score awarded to the aforementioned application as per the formal assessment and evaluation of applications; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 30138/17 asked on 27 Jun 2017 - CLÁR Programme)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The 2017 CLÁR programme was launched on 31 March last, with a closing date of 5 May. The programme provides funding for small scale infrastructural projects in disadvantaged rural areas that have experienced significant levels of de-population.
Funding for the 2017 CLÁR programme was available this year under four separate Measures:
Measure 1: Support for School and Community Safety Measures
Measure 2...

148. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the expenses incurred by her Department relating to insurance of all types in each of the past five years; the cost of each insurance policy held by her Department over the same time period per annum; if she will provide the same data for all bodies under the aegis of her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26280/17 asked on 01 Jun 2017 - Insurance Data)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): As I recently informed the house in response to Parliamentary Question No 305 of 28 March, my Department and a number of the bodies under its aegis operate under State Indemnity, a self-insurance model whereby the State bears the financial risk associated with the cost of claims. This approach is set out in the Public Financial Procedures at C8 Section 11 whereby the general rule is that no insurance ...

403. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs her plans to simplify the Leader application form; if her attention has been drawn to the concerns of community groups which have expressed frustration at the complex nature of the questions asked and the length of time it takes to complete same; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 24517/17 asked on 23 May 2017 - Leader Programmes Administration)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): With a budget of €250 million up to 2020, the LEADER programme is a key part of the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development and has the capacity to deliver significant outcomes for rural areas. I am committed to implementing the LEADER 2014-2020 programme as efficiently and as effectively as possible. However, I am also aware that concerns have been expressed regarding some of the administrati...

470. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Pearse Doherty den an Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta an bhfuarthas comhfhreagras ó choiste i gcontae Dhún na nGall (sonraí curtha ar fáil) ina bhfuil drochstaid an bhóthair L1413 curtha in iúl don Aire; an gcuirfear maoiniú ar fáil chun an bealach seo a dheisiú; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 18196/17 asked on 11 Apr 2017 - Scéim na mBóithre Pobail)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Seán Kyne): Is féidir liom a dheimhniú don Teachta gur cuireadh mo Roinn ar an eolas, tríd Comhairle Chontae Dhún na nGall, faoin mbóthar atá luaite aige. Mar is eol don Teachta, tá forfheidhmiú na Straitéise 20 Bliain don Ghaeilge 2010-2030 a foilsíodh i mí na Nollag 2010 áirithe go sonrach mar sprioc i gClár an Rialtais Rannpháirtíochta. 
Tugann Acht na Gaeltachta 2012 feidhm reachtúil don ...

471. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the reason a person (details supplied) in County Donegal has not received compensation for the accommodation of controlled sheep grazing and the subsequent unavailability of commonage during periods in 2013 and 2014; if officials from the National Parks and Wildlife Service will contact the person directly in order to discuss same; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18210/17 asked on 11 Apr 2017 - Commonage Land Use)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): It is my understanding that there was no formal agreement, farm plan or contract put in place between the individual referred to in details supplied and the National Parks and Wildlife Service of my Department, although there had been discussions about improved grazing management. 
There is also a lack of clarity as to whether this individual has applied to join the GLAS scheme which would then norm...

382. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the EU funds her Department accesses; the plans she is putting in place to access these funds to a greater degree in view of Brexit; if she will outline initiatives she is pursuing to establish access to new funds in view of the challenge of Brexit; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8800/17 asked on 21 Feb 2017 - EU Funding)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The only EU funding directly accessed by my Department are LIFE Programme funds. The LIFE programme is the EU’s funding instrument for the environment and climate action. The general objective of LIFE is to contribute to the implementation, updating and development of EU environmental and climate policy and legislation by co-financing projects with European added value. The Department receives fundi...

377. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the details of all projects for which funding and business supports have been approved by Údarás na Gaeltachta, including details of the business type and activities carried out with respect to each; the details of the funding type and headings under which funding was granted with respect to each, for each of the years 2014 to 2016 and to date in 2017 to date, in tabular form; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 2685/17 asked on 24 Jan 2017 - State Bodies Data)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Seán Kyne): The information sought by the Deputy is published by Údarás na Gaeltachta in its Annual Report and Accounts which are laid before the Houses of the Oireachtas each year. The body’s 2014 and 2015 Annual Report and Accounts have already been laid before the Houses and that those in respect of 2016 and 2017 will be laid in due course.
 ...

275. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Pearse Doherty den an Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta agus tagairt á déanamh do Dhíospóireacht na Saincheisteanna Tráthúla ar an 13 Deireadh Fómhair, an gclúdófar na scoileanna breise uile atá fógartha ag an Aire mar chuid de Scéim na gCúntóirí Teanga; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 33263/16 asked on 08 Nov 2016 - Scéim na gCúntóirí Teanga)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Seán Kyne): Beidh a fhios ag an Teachta go bhfuil suim beagnach €781,242 ceadaithe ag mo Roinn don togra seo le haghaidh 2016/2017. Níl aon ghearradh siar déanta ar an maoiniú ó 2015/2016. Ina dhiaidh sin, tá sé suas do na heagraíochtaí atá ag feidhmiú na scéime ar an talamh an maoiniú atá ar fáil a roinnt, ag brath ar an éileamh agus na tosaíochtaí a athraíonn ó bhliain go bliain. Mar atá ráite agam cheana, tá mé...

166. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Pearse Doherty den an Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta an bhfuil sé de rún aici reachtaíocht níos déine a thabhairt isteach chun cosaint níos fearr a thabhairt do shuímh ina bhfuil oidhreacht thógtha lonnaithe; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 31307/16 asked on 20 Oct 2016 - Tionscadail Oidhreachta)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): Tá mé sásta go bhfuil an tAcht um Pleanáil agus Forbairt, 2000, arna leasú, éifeachtach ó thaobh ár n-oidhreacht thógtha a chosaint.  Tá athbhreithniú leanúnach á dhéanamh ag mo chuid oifigigh ar fheidhmiú an Achta, a mhéid a bhaineann sé leis an gcosaint seo. Go ginearálta, bíonn athruithe ar an reachtaíocht pleanála faoi chaibidil leanúnach ag mo Roinnse agus an Roinn Tithíochta, Pleanála, Pobail agu...

335. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the progress made on implementing the programme for Government commitment to thoroughly investigate the German Sparkassen model for the development of local public banks that operate within well defined regions. (Question 29594/16 asked on 11 Oct 2016 - Financial Services Regulation)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Michael Ring): The Programme for a Partnership Government envisages that An Post, the League of Credit Unions and other interested stakeholders will be asked to investigate and propose a new model of “community banking” which could be delivered through the Post Office network. In this regard, the Government Programme includes a commitment to investigate, amongst other options, the German Sparkassen model for the dev...

167. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the number of persons outside the payroll shared service centre, in increments of €5,000, in receipt of lump sums on retirement from the public service; and the corresponding amount of the lump sum in each of the years 2013 to 2015 granted by her Department. (Question 28761/16 asked on 05 Oct 2016 - Public Sector Staff Retirements)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I assume the Deputy is referring to lump sums paid in the case of bodies/agencies under the aegis of my Department. Details in this regard are set out in the table in the format requested. Details regarding lump sums paid to civil servants are a matter for the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. 
 Band (€) 2013Number paid 2014Number paid 2015Number paid 0 – 4,999 1 3 0 5,000 –...

345. D’fhiafraigh Deputy Pearse Doherty den an Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta, Gnóthaí Réigiúnacha, Tuaithe agus Gaeltachta an gcuirfear níos mó cuidiú airgid ar fáil mar chuid de scéim na gcúntóirí teanga i bhfianaise na scoileanna breise atá ag glacadh páirte ann; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 28203/16 asked on 04 Oct 2016 - Scéimeanna Teanga)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Seán Kyne): Bunaíodh Scéim na gCúntóirí Teanga i 1999 ar bhonn píolótach chun an Ghaeilge a láidriú mar theanga labhartha i measc aos óg na Gaeltachta agus iompar teanga scoláirí scoile a chur i dtreo na Gaeilge. Tá infheistíocht shuntasach déanta ag mo Roinn sa scéim seo ó shin i leith.
Tá deontas gur fiú €718,578 in iomlán ceadaithe agam do Mhuintearas Teo agus d’Oidhreacht Chorca Dhuibhne don...

523. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs to outline the efforts being made to facilitate a request from landowners (details supplied) for a formal meeting at which she, the designated areas appeals advisory board, and personnel from the National Parks and Wildlife Service have been requested to attend to discuss a proposed site designation; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26466/16 asked on 27 Sep 2016 - Special Areas of Conservation Designation)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): Officials of my Department and I have met with landowners representing the special protection area in question. My Department also wishes to move forward with a management plan for the site, to be developed in full consultation with landowners and the relevant local authority.
My Department has recently been in contact with a representative of the landowners with a view to arranging another meeting.
 ...

971. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs the landlords that her Department or bodies under her aegis paid rent to in each of the past three years; and the sums paid in each case. (Question 25411/16 asked on 16 Sep 2016 - Lease Agreements)

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Heather Humphreys): In general, matters relating to the acquisition and leasing of property for my Department are the responsibility of the Office of Public Works. However, I am advised that my Department is itself currently renting one property. This is the Burren Information Point in Corofin, owned by Clare Heritage Centre. The annual rent payable in each of the past three years is €8,370.
In addition, my Department ...

462. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the amount of pre-financing by programme her Department has applied for with regard to the current phase of EU funding programmes; the amount that is likely to be reimbursed to the European Commission; the reasons this money will be reimbursed; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20573/16 asked on 12 Jul 2016 - EU Funding)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): In terms of Programme expenditure, my Department received €3.923 million in pre-financing for the LEADER programme in December 2015. None of this amount will be reimbursed to the EU Commission and further funding will be drawn down based on actual expenditure (at the rate of 63%) over the course of the programme which is due to run until 2020. My Department also received €2.969 million in pre-financing from the EU Commis...

146. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht if she will continue to provide supports to an Údarás na Gaeltachta client company (details supplied) following the company having had its certified approval to deliver industry specific training withdrawn; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18751/16 asked on 29 Jun 2016 - Údarás na Gaeltachta)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Seán Kyne): I understand from Údarás na Gaeltachta that the company referred to by the Deputy has been a valued client and tenant of an tÚdarás since 2009. Údarás na Gaeltachta is aware of the present difficulties that the company has in relation to certification of its core industry specific training courses. I am informed that the management of the company has kept in regular contact with an tÚdarás as the compan...

209. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the reason a person (details supplied) in County Donegal has not yet received an information pack pertaining to the designation in respect of the special protection area in which Inis Meáin Island is located; if he will make arrangements to have this person furnished with these documents; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17578/16 asked on 22 Jun 2016 - Special Protection Areas)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): Inis Meáin Island forms part of the West Donegal Islands special protection area (Site Code: 004230). A site pack was sent to the individual referred to in the Deputy’s Question when this site was proposed for designation in July 2011. I understand that this individual has had his appeal, in relation to the inclusion of his land within the special protection area, referred to the Designated Areas Appeals Advisory Board f...

161. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the co-ordinates of all reported sightings of the corncrake on Inis Meáin Island, County Donegal, over the past five years; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7879/16 asked on 21 Apr 2016 - Wildlife Conservation)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): My Department will forward the details of located corncrakes by letter to the Deputy in the coming days.
 ...

162. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to provide maps of the areas which it is planned will be designated as an area of conservation as part of the Falcarragh-Meenlaragh special protection area; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7880/16 asked on 21 Apr 2016 - Special Protection Areas Designation)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 162 and 163 together. 
The intention to designate the Falcarragh to Meenlaragh special protection area was advertised in July 2011. Notifications, including maps and other information, were sent to those identified as having an interest in the land at that time. In addition, notices of the intention to designate the site were published to further raise awareness. 
Maps and other informati...

163. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht regarding the Falcarragh-Meenlaragh special protection area, the reason a person (details supplied) in County Donegal has not yet received an information pack pertaining to the designation; if arrangements will now be made to have this person furnished with these documents; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7881/16 asked on 21 Apr 2016 - Special Protection Areas Designation)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I propose to take Questions Nos. 162 and 163 together. 
The intention to designate the Falcarragh to Meenlaragh special protection area was advertised in July 2011. Notifications, including maps and other information, were sent to those identified as having an interest in the land at that time. In addition, notices of the intention to designate the site were published to further raise awareness. 
Maps and other informati...

601. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to review the designation of the Meenlaragh Falcarragh special protection area in County Donegal; if she is aware of the ongoing controversy and resentment among communities within the region as a result of the area’s designated status due to the associated restrictions placed on landowners; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 5081/16 asked on 22 Mar 2016 - Special Areas of Conservation Designation)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): The Court of Justice of the European Union made a judgement against Ireland in 2007 in case C-418/04, for failing to implement in full the EU Birds Directive. In a significant element of the judgement, the court found that Ireland had not designated sufficient special protection areas for the corncrake and in paragraphs 101-102 of the judgement referred specifically to the Falcarragh to Mín an Chladaigh area. This area had...

603. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the number of vacancies which exist within her Department for candidates who must display competence in the Irish language; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 5428/16 asked on 22 Mar 2016 - Departmental Staff Data)

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Heather Humphreys): I am advised that as gaps arise across my Department they are assessed through the workforce planning process, having due regard to Department of Public Expenditure and Reform directives, guidelines and circulars on staffing. 
Irish is the working language of my Department’s Gaeltacht Division which provides a full service through Irish to members of the public. There are currently 49 staff assigned to the Gaeltacht Divi...

487. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht an bhfuil plean aici níos mó tacaíochta a thabhairt do Mhná Tí i gceantair Ghaeltachta chun dul i ngleic leis na costais ollmhóra a bhaineann le lóistín na mac léinn Gaeilge agus le costais ghaolmhara; agus an ndéanfaidh sí ráiteas ina thaobh. (Question 1987/16 asked on 19 Jan 2016 - Scéim na bhFoghlaimeoirí Gaeilge)

Minister of State at the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht(Deputy Joe McHugh): Tá áthas orm a rá go bhfuil sé i gceist go leanfaí ag íoc cúnamh faoi Scéim na bhFoghlaimeoirí Gaeilge don bhliain atá romhainn. Agus cúinsí airgid mar a bhí, tá ríméad orm fosta go raibh ar chumas mo Roinne an deontas a íoctar a choinneáil ag an ráta céanna le cúpla bliain anuas. Ní miste a lua, ar ndóigh, go bhfuil aon airgead a shaothraíonn na teaghlaigh saor ó chain. Ní chuirtear san áireamh ach oirea...