104. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the status of the provision of the new male and female facilities for Limerick Prison; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19363/18 asked on 03 May 2018 - Prison Facilities)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I am advised by the Director General of the Irish Prison Service that an Invitation to Tender for the construction of a new wing for 100 male prisoners and a new unit to accommodate 50 female prisoners at Limerick prison was issued by the Irish Prison Service on my behalf on July 20th last. The original date for receipt of tenders was set as November 30th 2017 and this was extended to January 25th 2018. 
Four tenders were received by ...

487. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when legislation will be introduced regarding parental leave; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 15267/18 asked on 17 Apr 2018 - Parental Leave)

Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality (Deputy David Stanton): As the Deputy will be aware, the Programme for Partnership Government includes a commitment to increase paid parental leave during the first year of a child’s life, as research shows that parental care is of particular importance in the first year of life. 
To further this commitment, the Government has established an interdepartmental working group to develop proposals to give effect to the programme commitments...

183. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if his attention has been drawn to the fact the position for superintendent for the Nenagh district, County Tipperary, is still vacant; when this position will be filled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14512/18 asked on 29 Mar 2018 - Garda Promotions)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 and 202 together.
As the Deputy will appreciate, the distribution of personnel is a matter for the Garda Commissioner and I, as Minister have no direct role in the matter. I am assured by the Commissioner that Garda personnel assigned throughout the country, together with overall policing arrangements and operational strategies, are continually monitored and reviewed. Such monitoring ensures that op...

202. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if his attention has been drawn to the fact that there is a vacant position for superintendent in Nenagh, County Tipperary; when this position will be filled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14763/18 asked on 29 Mar 2018 - Garda Promotions)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 and 202 together.
As the Deputy will appreciate, the distribution of personnel is a matter for the Garda Commissioner and I, as Minister have no direct role in the matter. I am assured by the Commissioner that Garda personnel assigned throughout the country, together with overall policing arrangements and operational strategies, are continually monitored and reviewed. Such monitoring ensures that op...

179. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the reason it has been decided without consultation that there will only be one service provider per Garda division; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14411/18 asked on 28 Mar 2018 - Garda Youth Diversion Projects)

Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality (Deputy David Stanton): As the Deputy may be aware, my Department is obliged to carry out a Call for Proposals process during 2018 in relation to the provision of Garda Youth Diversion Project (GYDP) services, to fully comply with requirements related to the co-funding of projects by the European Social Fund Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning 2014-2020.
To ensure State-wide coverage of GYDP services for young people, (w...

182. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the reason the Irish Youth Service has not included a project (details supplied) in the European tender regulations covering protection of employees on transfer of undertakings; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14481/18 asked on 28 Mar 2018 - Garda Youth Diversion Projects)

Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality (Deputy David Stanton): As the Deputy will be aware my Department is obliged to carry out a Call for Proposals process during 2018 in relation to the provision of Garda Youth Diversion Project (GYDP) services, to fully comply with requirements related to the co-funding of projects by the European Social Fund Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning 2014-2020.
I can assure the Deputy that my Department is committed to ensuring...

257. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if his attention has been drawn to the fact that a number of programmes that involve giving assistance to vulnerable young persons and special needs children on an occasional basis have been discontinued due to the host organisations wrongly interpreting the Children and Vulnerable Persons Act 2016; the action he will take to clarify the situation to enable these interactions to resume; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8780/18 asked on 20 Feb 2018 - Garda Vetting of Personnel)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): Employment vetting is carried out by An Garda Síochána primarily in accordance with the provisions of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012-2016. The Deputy will understand that the primary purpose of the employment vetting carried out by the Garda National Vetting Bureau is to seek to ensure the safety of children and vulnerable adults.
In accordance with the legislation, registered organisations must ...

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.
 ...

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.
 ...

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.
 ...

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.
 ...

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...