27. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if there will be an increase in the number of staff in his Department in 2018 particularly in the areas covering Brexit in Dublin and Brussels; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11818/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Simon Coveney): My Department is taking steps to reinforce existing missions, including in key partner countries, to address the impact of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. Already sixteen additional staff members have been assigned to our Embassies in London, Paris and Berlin and to Ireland’s Permanent Representation to the European Union in Brussels.
There are plans to significantly enhance Ireland’s networks over the coming years in ...

176. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of persons holding Civil Service positions above clerical officer grade in his Department who entered the Civil Service via a route other than through an open competition run by the Public Appointments Service or its predecessors; the grades of each; and the basis for the non-standard recruitment (Question 11856/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Under the terms of the Guidelines for Ministerial Appointments published by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform my Department presently employs five special advisers and six civilian drivers which are non established Civil Servants. The five special advisers and six civilian drivers are assigned to the Minister, and to the two Ministers of State in the Department. The special advisers were appointed by Government and the ci...

690. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the number of persons holding Civil Service positions above clerical officer grade in his Department who entered the Civil Service via a route other than through an open competition run by the Public Appointments Service or its predecessors; the grades of each; and the basis for the non-standard recruitment (Question 11850/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): Following the easing of the moratorium on recruitment in the Public Sector in late 2014, my Department secured delegated sanction from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in relation to overall staffing resources in May 2015.   This removed the necessity for compliance with Employment Control Framework (ECF) targets, and provided the Department with the flexibility to fill critical resource needs subject to adheren...

963. Deputy Martin Kenny asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of persons who have been hired by her Department from the Public Appointments Service panels in counties Sligo and Leitrim in each of the years 2013 to 2017 and to date in 2018; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 12488/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): The information requested by the Deputy is as follows:
Temporary Staff
 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 (to date) SLIGO 100 82 150 159 142 14 LEITRIM 20 24 29 27 24 2 

Permanent staff 
 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 (to date) SLIGO 0 0 3 5 34 0 LEITRIM 0 0 1 6 9 1 
 ...

964. Deputy Martin Kenny asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of vacant, full and part-time positions in her Department that have been filled by persons on temporary contracts in counties Sligo and Leitrim in each of the years 2013 to 2017 and to date in 2018; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 12489/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 964 and 965 together.
Temporary clerical officers (TCOs) are recruited to cover absences of permanent staff on maternity leave, long term sick leave, and other statutory leave and also to provide cover for some staff availing of the shorter working year scheme They are also recruited to alleviate work pressure in certain areas, special projects and to assist in the roll-out of the Publ...

965. Deputy Martin Kenny asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of persons in her Department who are on temporary contracts that have been renewed; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 12490/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): I propose to take Questions Nos. 964 and 965 together.
Temporary clerical officers (TCOs) are recruited to cover absences of permanent staff on maternity leave, long term sick leave, and other statutory leave and also to provide cover for some staff availing of the shorter working year scheme They are also recruited to alleviate work pressure in certain areas, special projects and to assist in the roll-out of the Publ...

6. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Taoiseach and Minister for Defence if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11716/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister of State at the Department of Defence (Deputy Paul Kehoe): There is no role of Head of Communications within my Department and no panel for communications officers. There are no current plans to make such appointments within my Department. There is a post of Technical Communications Officer with the Civil Defence Branch to support the operations of radio and the other communications infrastructure of Civil Defence.
 ...

80. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Finance if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11719/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): I wish to inform the Deputy that the Department of Finance has no panel in place for Head of Communications or a similar role nor are there any plans to make such an appointment.
 ...

114. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11724/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): I wish to advise the Deputy that the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has no panel in place for Head of Communications or a similar role nor are there any plans to make such an appointment. 
 ...

178. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Education and Skills if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11717/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): No panel has been established at my Department for the position of communications officer as mentioned by the Deputy. Similarly no civil service position as head of communications has been appointed. Overall responsibility for the Press Office within the Department resides within the Corporate Services Division of my Department.
 ...

233. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11723/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): No panel has been established in my Department for the position of communications officer. I can confirm that arising from recommendations of the Toland Report and the implementation of the Change Programme in response to the Toland Report an officer at the grade of Principal Officer was assigned as Head of Communications in January 2015. The current occupant of this position has overall responsibility for communications as well as fo...

252. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation if a panel has been established in her Department for communications officers; if a civil service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in her Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; her plans to make such an appointment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11712/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Heather Humphreys): My Department has not established a panel for communications officers. However a Head of Communications was appointed on July 17th, 2017 at Principal Officer level, following an open competition by the Public Appointments Service. The Department made the appointment as part of a wider drive to strengthen professional expertise within its corporate functions, which is a key objective of the Civil Service Renewal Plan.
 ...

445. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the number of staff assigned in his Department to the press office, public relations or communications roles in each year since 2015; the positions by staffing grade and designated role; when each new position came into existence; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11695/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): I propose to take Questions Nos. 445 and 446 together.
The Press and Information Office in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine consists of the Press Officer and six support staff members. 
The breakdown of staff is: 1 Press Officer, appointed internally at Assistant Principal Officer level, 1 Higher Executive Officer, 1 Administrative Officer, 2 Executive Officers and 2 Clerical Officers. Since 2015, the only ad...

446. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11711/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Michael Creed): I propose to take Questions Nos. 445 and 446 together.
The Press and Information Office in the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine consists of the Press Officer and six support staff members. 
The breakdown of staff is: 1 Press Officer, appointed internally at Assistant Principal Officer level, 1 Higher Executive Officer, 1 Administrative Officer, 2 Executive Officers and 2 Clerical Officers. Since 2015, the only ad...

465. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11714/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The Public Appointments Service is currently undertaking a recruitment competition for a Head of Communications for the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment.  As part of the Department’s workforce planning, a Head of Communications role was deemed necessary by the Department’s Management Board to develop and implement a comprehensive external communications strategy to support the deliver...

505. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11726/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport (Deputy Shane Ross): No panel for Communications Officers has been established in my Department and no Civil Service position of Head of Communications or similar role or description been appointed.
 ...

528. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if a panel has been established in her Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in her Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; her plans to make such an appointment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11713/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): No panel has been established in my Department for communications officers. My Department does not have a designated civil service role of head of communications or similar. I have no plans to make such an appointment.
The day-to-day press office function in my Department has usually been serviced by an Executive Officer in recent years; in 2017, a clerical officer was assigned to assist in that role.
One of my Special Advisors ...

542. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development if a panel has been established in his Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in his Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; his plans to make such an appointment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11725/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): My Department was established on 19 July 2017, to deliver on the Government’s commitment to bring a greater degree of coordination and cohesion to all of the work of Government in so far as it impacts on rural Ireland and communities.
I can confirm that there is no panel in my Department for the position of Communications Officer. Furthermore, all Corporate functions, including communications and press office functions are mana...

616. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if a panel has been established in her Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in her Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; her plans to make such an appointment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11718/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): My Department is continuously engaging with its broad customer and stakeholder base to increase public awareness of its many schemes and services.
With this in mind, a dedicated Communications and Customer Services Unit exists within my Department whose role is to ensure information about the Departments schemes and its work is effectively communicated with customers and stakeholder using a wide range of communication...

700. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht if a panel has been established in her Department for communications officers; if a Civil Service position of head of communications or similar role or description has been appointed in her Department; if so, when the appointment occurred; the grade at which it occurred; the reason for same; the policy basis for same; the person that approved the appointment; her plans to make such an appointment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 11715/18 asked on 08 Mar 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Deputy Josepha Madigan): I am advised that no panel for communications officers has been established in my Department.  My Department does not currently have a head of communications role and has made no decision at present to make such an appointment.
 ...

416. Deputy Billy Kelleher asked the Minister for Health if the post of independent appeals officer for his Department, as advertised in the autumn, has been filled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 9493/18 asked on 27 Feb 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): Following a recruitment competition conducted by the Public Appointments Service in October 2017, a preferred candidate to fill the position of Independent Appeals Officer has been selected. My Department is finalising contractual arrangements with that candidate who is expected to be appointed to the position in early April.
 ...

159. Deputy John McGuinness asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform further to Parliamentary Question No. 121 of 29 November 2017, the process by which external members of the top level appointments committee, TLAC, are appointed; the qualifications and skill sets sought in this regard; the level of professional human resources qualifications of each member; the rationale behind the decision to have two ex-officio members; the skill sets required by the two Secretaries General appointed; the process by which they were selected and appointed; the attendance record of each member; the number of occasions when a split decision occurred in terms of an appointment; the way in which such a decision is dealt with; the number of persons appointed to vacancies that had no connection with the civil of public service out of the 615 appointments; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8475/18 asked on 20 Feb 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): I would direct the Deputy to my answer to PQ 52475/17 of 6th December 2017.
“The Top Level Appointments Committee (TLAC) operates in an independent manner and strictly on the basis of open competition and merit. TLAC is responsible for determining its own procedures and remit, subject to Government decisions as appropriate. All TLAC interviews are conducted by sub-panels of the Top Level Appointments Committee each comprising t...

116. Deputy Brendan Smith asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if additional staff will be recruited for the passport office to try to minimise delays in the processing and issuing of passports; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 6593/18 asked on 08 Feb 2018 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Simon Coveney): The number of Full Time Equivalent (FTE) staff permanently employed by my Department and currently assigned to the Passport Service is 322. In addition, the Passport Service has received sanction for 210 Temporary Clerical Officers (TCOs) this year to respond to the seasonal demand for passports, which is normally between February and September annually. Training for the first intake of TCOs has already commenced, with...

71. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the reason the OPW recently advertised in the national press for guides and sought information on age and marital status on the application form in breach of equality legislation; and the steps he has taken to ensure it does not happen again; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 52460/17 asked on 07 Dec 2017 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

Minister of State at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Kevin Boxer Moran): In their standard annual application process for Seasonal Guides for Heritage visitor sites, the OPW routinely seeks key information from prospective candidates in order to progress the selection process. The online application form for the 2018 season can be viewed at https://www.opw.ie/en/seasonal-guide-recruitment-form/
Information in relation to specific date of birth is sought in order to ensur...

8. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach the number of staffing vacancies in his Department. (Question 47899/17 asked on 22 Nov 2017 - Departmental Staff Recruitment)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 8 to 10, inclusive, together.
With the exception of politically appointed staff such as special advisers, all staff assignments, appointments and recruitment in my Department are the responsibility of the Secretary General and senior management of the Department. My Department uses workforce planning and succession planning to ensure there are sufficient staffing resources in place to deliver the Department’s strategic goals. The number of vacanc...