191. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality to outline his plans to introduce a reduction for those on low income, social welfare or senior citizens regarding the fixed fee when applying for naturalisation; his further plans to abolish the penalty that applies at present to those that are not in a position to pay the fixed rate within a set period; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 48160/17 asked on 14 Nov 2017 - Naturalisation Applications)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The fees to be paid by an applicant for a certificate of naturalisation are governed by the provisions of the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Regulations 2011 (S.I. No. 569 of 2011). The application fee, stipulated at €175, is payable on application for a certificate of naturalisation and a certification fee is payable on the issue of a certificate of naturalisation. The standard certification fee is set at €950, while a reduced fe...

608. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the financial allocation for An Garda Síochána in 2010 and in 2015; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 37705/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Garda Resources)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The gross financial allocation for the Garda Vote in 2010 inclusive of a supplementary estimate was almost €1.53 billion. The allocation in 2015 was €1.51 billion which also included a supplementary estimate.
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81. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality if she will consider establishing a branch of the Valuation Office in Tipperary town in view of the fact that her Department has office space available at this location and a number of advantages would ensue from such a move; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 38919/16 asked on 07 Dec 2016 - Valuation Office)

Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am informed by the Commissioner of Valuation that the introduction of a regional structure for the Valuation Office is not in line with the current operational requirements and work programmes of the organisation and is not, at present, under consideration.
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78. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality when she will appoint the criminal injuries compensation tribunal and when it will hear appeals; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 16964/16 asked on 21 Jun 2016 - Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal)

Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I can inform the Deputy that vacancies were advertised on the Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal in April and I expect the process of making appointments to be finalised in the near future. I am informed that the Tribunal, which is independent in the exercise of its functions, will then plan the scheduling of appeal hearings.
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233. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when she will allocate funding to the Moyross Development Company for urgently required health and safety upgrades to recommence services provided by the Irish Youth Justice Service; the date the funding will be released and the amount that will be made payable; if services will not be denied to the youth of the area as has been the case for some months now; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 4805/16 asked on 22 Mar 2016 - Irish Youth Justice Service)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): The Department of Justice and Equality through the Irish Youth Justice Service (IYJS), funds the national network of Garda youth diversion projects (GYDPs) and young persons probation projects (YPPPs). The projects are managed on the ground by community based organisations (CBO). The IYJS is familiar with the details of the works required to be carried out at the Moyross premises where a GYDP and a YPPP are operated by the Moyro...

62. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the additional resources that will be made available to An Garda Síochána in Limerick city under Operation Thor; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42423/15 asked on 01 Dec 2015 - Garda Operations)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Operation Thor is a multi-stranded national operation which builds on previous and current Garda operations to tackle crime, particularly burglaries the number of which, as we know, increase with the advent of the long winter nights, in both urban and rural communities nationwide. In excess of €5 million is being committed to support Operation Thor. This allocation, which includes funding for Garda overtime will support a combinatio...

70. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of gardaí in the Henry Street and Roxboro districts on 1 November 2010 and on 1 November 2015; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42424/15 asked on 01 Dec 2015 - Garda Deployment)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of personnel, among the Garda Regions, Divisions, and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continuing review taking into account crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the best possible use is made of these resources.
I have been informed by the Garda Commissioner that list of stations and the number of Gar...

323. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of Garda personnel in the Limerick Garda Síochána Division in each of the years 2011 to 2015 to date; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 41521/15 asked on 24 Nov 2015 - Garda Strength)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of personnel, among the Garda Regions, Divisions, and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continuing review taking into account crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the best possible use is made of these resources.
I have been informed by the Garda Commissioner that the numbers of Garda personnel in the ...

457. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality further to Parliamentary Question No. 303 of 10 March 2015, the reason a decision has not been reached regarding Garda Síochána vetting of a person (details supplied) in County Limerick who now faces the real possibility of losing his business; if she considers this time frame to be appropriate; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 28676/15 asked on 14 Jul 2015 - Garda Vetting of Personnel)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am informed by the Garda authorities that in respect of the application for Garda Vetting which has been made in respect of the person to whom the Deputy refers, further enquiries were required to be made and those enquiries are still continuing. On completion of these enquiries a vetting disclosure will be returned to the relevant authorised signatory.
In general, Garda Vetting processing times can fluctuate depending on seasonal...

381. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when the matters of concern and proposals submitted in regard to firearms licensing by the Sports Coalition will be decided upon; when the review will conclude in view of the impending renewal process commencement at the end of July 2015; if she will respond to the Sports Coalition’s proposal and allay the suspicion that absence of engagement creates; if she is aware that the Sports Coalition has found it necessary to meet legal advisers to discuss a contingency in the event that any currently licensed firearms are capped or banned; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 24976/15 asked on 23 Jun 2015 - Firearms Licences)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As part of the consultation process for the ongoing review of firearms licensing I have given a commitment that I would not make any decisions until I had met the key stakeholders, including the organisations who represent those who use firearms for sporting purposes. I had a useful meeting with the key stakeholders on 29 April 2015. Consideration of the issues involved, including the Sports Coalition proposal made last month, is c...

303. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when a decision will be made by the Garda vetting office regarding an application for a contractor’s licence (details supplied) in County Limerick; the reason for the delay; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 9883/15 asked on 10 Mar 2015 - Garda Vetting Applications)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will be aware, the Private Security Authority (PSA), established under the Private Security Services Act 2004, is the regulatory body with responsibility for regulating and licensing the private security industry. The Authority is an independent body under the aegis of my Department and so the processing of licence applications is a matter solely for the Authority. The Deputy will appreciate that Garda vetting is an i...

432. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of handguns or rifles stolen from licensed firearm holders excluding firearm dealers and blank deactivated firearms since 2009; when the current enhanced security arrangements were put in place; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 1271/15 asked on 14 Jan 2015 - Control of Firearms)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I have asked the Garda Commissioner for a report on these matters and will write to the Deputy when it becomes available.
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267. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if she will implement the recommendations of her Department’s An Garda Síochána working group on review of firearms and licensing; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44915/14 asked on 25 Nov 2014 - Firearms Licences)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 262, 266, 267, 274, 279 and 296 together.
In light of public safety concerns highlighted by An Garda Síochána and difficulties in the interpretation of the legislation expressed by members of the Judiciary, a joint Department of Justice and Equality/An Garda Síochána Working Group was established by my Department to review firearms licensing. The Report of this Working Group was published on 13 Novem...

270. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality further to Parliamentary Question No. 293 of 7 October 2014 when this Deputy will receive a reply; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44984/14 asked on 25 Nov 2014 - Garda Strength)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will be aware, one of the primary functions of the Garda Commissioner under the Garda Síochána Acts, is to direct and control An Garda Síochána. In this regard, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of all resources, including fully sworn members and Reserve Gardaí, among the Garda Regions, Divisions and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continuing review in the context of se...

95. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the ministerial transport costs for the years 2010 to 2013, inclusive, for each Minister and Minister of State in her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 44894/14 asked on 19 Nov 2014 - Ministerial Transport)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will be aware, the Government introduced a number of changes for the provision of Office Holder transport during 2011. One of the consequences of that decision was that the transport arrangements in place for Ministers of State became applicable to Government Ministers, subject to very limited exceptions on security grounds. In addition, it was decided that former Presidents and Taoisigh would only be supplied with of...

293. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if she will provide the numbers of Garda personnel in the Limerick Garda division in 2011, 2012, 2013 and to date in 2014; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 38052/14 asked on 07 Oct 2014 - Garda Data)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of personnel among the Garda Regions, Divisions, and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continuing review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the best possible use is made of these resources.
I have asked the Garda Commissioner for the information requested and will correspond direct...

431. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if her attention has been drawn to the fact that an Irish citizen (details supplied) is presently incarcerated in Beateberg prison, Stockholm, has applied to be transferred to prison in Ireland and the procedure has already been initiated; the length of time this procedure will take; if same will be expedited in view of the fact that the person’s imprisonment is due to terminate at the end of the year; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 24271/14 asked on 10 Jun 2014 - Prisoner Transfers)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am advised by the Irish Prison Service that an application by a prisoner (details supplied) for a transfer to a prison in this jurisdiction, under the Council of Europe Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons, was received in May 2014. Requests for the reports necessary to make a decision on the application were subsequently issued and upon receipt of same, the application will be processed in the normal manner.
Each case i...

694. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if a person (details supplied) will be transferred from Maghaberry Prison to Portlaoise; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 23080/14 asked on 27 May 2014 - Prisoner Transfers)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I wish to advise the Deputy that the application received under the Transfer of Sentenced Persons Act 1995 and 1997 from the person referred to is currently receiving the attention of the Chief State Solicitor’s Office.
I decide on all such requests following the collation of a number of reports from various agencies setting out the consequences of such a transfer. 
For any such transfer to take place, the consent of all three parti...

568. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when a decision will be made on an application for a residency card in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Limerick; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18955/14 asked on 30 Apr 2014 - Residency Permits)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I am informed by officials in the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) that the person referred to by the Deputy was granted permission to remain in the State for a period of five years on the 20 January, 2009 on the basis that she was the spouse of an EU citizen who was residing and in exercise of his EU Treaty Rights in the State in accordance with the provisions of the European Communities (Free Movement of Persons) (No.2...

548. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the €1 million plus sum of money seized near Castleconnell, County Limerick recently is deemed by Criminal Assets Bureau to belong to the State; if it will be allocated to organisations in Limerick dealing with the scourge of drugs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 55331/13 asked on 15 Jan 2014 - Criminal Assets Bureau)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): As the Deputy will appreciate the question relates to a matter which is the subject of ongoing investigation and in such circumstances it would not be appropriate for me to comment further on this matter. More generally, with regard to the destination of monies collected by the Criminal Assets Bureau, I can inform the Deputy that all such monies are returned to the Exchequer in accordance with the provisions of the Proceeds of Crime Acts ...

364. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality following a request for Garda clearance, the way it occurred that a person (details supplied) in County Clare was assigned the criminal convictions of a person in County Tipperary; when this matter will be rectified; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 52742/13 asked on 10 Dec 2013 - Garda Vetting of Personnel)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I am informed by the Garda authorities that a Data Protection Access request under Section 4 of the Data Protection Act was received by the Garda Central Vetting Unit (GCVU) on behalf of the individual concerned. The application was processed and a reply was returned to the individual concerned on 17 May 2013. I am informed that as a result of further correspondence, the matter is currently under investigation by the Garda Central Vetti...

298. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the criminal injuries compensation tribunal is at present unable to adjudicate on cases as members have not been appointed to same; when he proposes to rectify same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 51723/13 asked on 03 Dec 2013 - Criminal Injuries Compensation Tribunal)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I can inform the Deputy that under the terms of Paragraph 17 of the Scheme of Compensation for Personal Injuries Criminally Inflicted I am at present in the process of appointing a new Tribunal to administer the Scheme. As the Deputy may be aware I have recently appointed a Tribunal Chairperson, Mr. John Cheatle, B.L. I also can inform the Deputy that under the terms of the Scheme the Tribunal Chairperson can determine applications and i...

523. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the reason his Department has requested proof of evidence for the past three months to be provided again when it had previously been provided to the citizenship unit in respect of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 49145/13 asked on 19 Nov 2013 - Naturalisation Applications)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that an application for a certificate of naturalisation has been received from the person referred to by the Deputy.
The application is being processed with a view to establishing whether the applicant meets the statutory conditions for the granting of naturalisation, such as good character and lawful residence, and will be submitted to me for decision...

737. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he will consider exempting reserve members of An Garda Síochána from the application process required for the general public when applying for positions with the force; if he will take the two year probation period completed by reserve members into account; the courses completed by the reserve members under consideration; if he will give first consideration for full-time posts when they arise to reserve members due to their prior training; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 45787/13 asked on 05 Nov 2013 - Garda Recruitment)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): The Deputy will be aware that recruitment to An Garda Síochána is governed by statutory regulations. The current regulations expressly provides that the Public Appointments Service will take into account any satisfactory service by a person as a reserve member of the Garda Síochána when they are applying to join the full time force. These regulations are currently being consolidated and revised and the same provisions for Reserve members w...

998. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current total strength of An Garda Síochána including the Garda Reserve; if he will provide in tabular form the strength of each district and division broken down by rank for the years 2010, 2011, 2012 and to July 2013; and in view of the success of the Haddington Road Agreement, when he intends to follow through with his commitment to commence recruitment into An Garda Siochana; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 36929/13 asked on 18 Sep 2013 - Garda Strength)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): The tables show the strength of the Garda Reserve and the strength of each Station, District and Division, broken down by rank, for the years 2010, 2011, 2012 and as of 31 July 2013. 
Before recruitment can commence, there are a number of procedural issues that need to be finalised prior to the formal commencement of the process which is expected to get underway in the coming weeks, with the first students entering the Garda College in...