7. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the position regarding the replacement of Air Corps Cessna aircraft; the position regarding the replacement of CASA maritime patrol aircraft; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 12152/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Air Corps Equipment)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): My priority as Minister with Responsibility for Defence is to ensure that the operational capability of the Defence Forces is maintained to the greatest extent possible so as to enable the Defence Forces to carry out their roles as assigned by Government. 
The White Paper provides for the replacement of the current Cessna fleet with three larger aircraft which will be equipped for Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition a...

129. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence his plans for investment in infrastructure in Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnel, in 2018; the investment for each project; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 1802/18 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Air Corps)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): Infrastructure projects are developed at military installations as part of the ongoing Defence Forces Built Infrastructure programme.  The programme  is designed to modernise and enhance the training, operational and accommodation facilities available to members of the Defence Forces.  It is based on operational requirements and is compiled on a priority basis by my Department in conjunction with the Military Authorities.
The ca...

439. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the amount of funding necessary to replace or upgrade aircraft within the Air Corps; if new aircraft will be purchased in 2018; the number of aircraft deployed with the Air Corps; the age of each aircraft; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44993/17 asked on 24 Oct 2017 - Air Corps Equipment)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): My priority as Minister with Responsibility for Defence is to ensure that the operational capability of the Army, Air Corps and Naval Service is maintained to the greatest extent possible so as to enable the Defence Forces to carry out their roles as assigned by Government as set out on the White Paper on Defence. Equipment priorities for the Army, Naval Service and Air Corps are being considered in the context of the lifetime o...

633. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence if there will be a general service recruitment campaign for the Air Corps launched before the year end; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43911/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Air Corps Recruitment)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The Government is committed to maintaining the establishment of the Permanent Defence Force at 9,500 personnel, comprising of 7,520 Army, 886 Air Corps and 1,094 Naval Service as stated in the 2015 White Paper on Defence.
The manpower requirements of the Permanent Defence Force are monitored on an ongoing basis in accordance with the operational requirements of the three services. Personnel are posted on the basis of operationa...

684. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence if a recruitment drive for the Air Corps will occur in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 31065/17 asked on 04 Jul 2017 - Air Corps Recruitment)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The Government is committed to maintaining the stabilised strength of the Permanent Defence Force at 9,500, comprising of 7,520 Army, 886 Air Corps and 1,094 Naval Service personnel, as stated in the 2015 White Paper on Defence.
The Air Corps (Pilot Officer) Cadetship competition was launched at the end of March 2017. There are currently 3 Cadet Classes, comprising 26 personnel, at various stages of their Pilot Officer ‘Wings C...

1468. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the reason the Casa Maritime Patrol Aircraft, Casa CN235, was not dispatched when top cover was originally requested on the night of 13 March 2017 which led to the Rescue 116 helicopter being dispatched in its place; the change in circumstances which allowed CN235 to be dispatched later that same night in view of the earlier unavailability of the Air Corps rescue service; the investigations his department is making into the matter; when the findings of such an investigation will be reported to Dáil Éireann; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19827/17 asked on 02 May 2017 - Air Corps Operations)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The Irish Coast Guard, which operates under the aegis of the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, has overall responsibility for the provision of Search and Rescue services within the Irish search and rescue region. The Coast Guard search and rescue services can request the support of the Air Corps on an ‘as available’ basis under a Service Level Agreement between the Department of Defence and the Department of Transport...

658. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence when additional air traffic controllers and Air Corps pilots will be recruited for Baldonnel Airport; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8430/17 asked on 21 Feb 2017 - Air Corps Recruitment)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe) (Deputy Paul Kehoe): Currently in the Air Corps there are 28 cadets, in 3 classes, undergoing the various stages of the Air Corps cadetship to become pilots. There are currently 8 Air Corps cadets in the final stages of their training with commissioning of these cadets likely to take place in Quarter 4 of this year. In addition, a Cadet Recruitment campaign is due to commence in the coming weeks, with a view to the commencement...

59. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence the number of vacancies in the Air Corps, by role, in 2016 and to date in 2017; the length of time required to fill each role; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7102/17 asked on 15 Feb 2017 - Air Corps Strength)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The serving strength of the Air Corps as at 31 December, 2016 was 704 personnel (whole time equivalent). The overall establishment figure for the Air Corps (as set out in Defence Forces Regulations CS4) is 887.
Due to the complexity of the task and the resources required, it is not possible to provide a complete breakdown of vacancies for all roles in the Air Corps for a specific given period of time. The following table is a ...

72. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence if he will report on the progress made with filling personnel vacancies in the Air Corps which are urgently required for the transport service for transplant patients; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7101/17 asked on 15 Feb 2017 - Air Corps Strength)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): The HSE’s Aeromedical Desk in its National Emergency Operations Centre is responsible for the co-ordination of transport arrangements for paediatric organ transplant transfers to the UK. Air transport for these patients is currently provided in three ways: Air Corps fixed-wing and rotor-wing aircraft; Irish Coast Guard rotor-wing aircraft; and private air ambulance providers.
As one of the components of the Defence Forces, the ...

933. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence if there will be a recruitment drive for the Air Corps later in 2016; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 22366/16 asked on 19 Jul 2016 - Air Corps Recruitment)

Taoiseach and Minister for Defence (Deputy Enda Kenny): The Government is committed to maintaining the stabilised strength of the Permanent Defence Force at 9,500 personnel, comprising of 7,520 Army, 886 Air Corps and 1,094 Naval Service as stated in the 2015 White Paper on Defence.
The manpower requirement of the Defence Forces is monitored on an ongoing basis in accordance with the operational requirements of each of the three services. As there is significant turnover of personnel in the Per...

76. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Defence the consideration that has been given by his Department to additional replacement and further modernisation of the Air Corps fleet. (Question 32390/15 asked on 23 Sep 2015 - Air Corps Equipment)

Minister for Defence (Deputy Simon Coveney): The equipment priorities for the Army, Air Corps and the Naval Service will be considered in the context of the lifetime of the recently published White Paper. The White Paper recognises that there are several new and or enhanced platforms to be procured. 
In the context of the Air Corps fleet, this includes the replacement of the Cessna fleet with three larger aircraft suitably equipped for Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnai...

160. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Defence the number of vacancies in the Air Corps Apprentices that have been currently filled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48881/12 asked on 07 Nov 2012 - Air Corps Recruitment)

Minister for Defence (Deputy Alan Shatter)(Deputy Alan Shatter): I have been advised by the Military Authorities that no Air Corps apprenticeship vacancies have been filled in 2012. However, an Air Corps apprenticeship competition which was advertised on 27 September 2012 is on-going, from which it is planned to enlist 20 apprentices by the end of the year.
This recruitment will be carried out within the resource envelope allocated to Defence.
 ...