18. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if ongoing sustainability issues at An Post will be addressed; the reason many small communities are likely to lose post offices; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18304/18 asked on 25 Apr 2018 - Post Office Network)

Deputy Timmy Dooley: In light of An Post outlining a rationalisation programme in recent days, will the Minister, Deputy Naughten, update us on concerns that exist in rural communities where there is now a real prospect that post offices will close?
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29. Deputy Willie Penrose asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the measures he is pursuing to protect and enhance rural post offices; the responsibilities he has in this area; the action he has planned; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8508/18 asked on 25 Apr 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 29 and 33 together.
As Minister, I am responsible for the postal sector including the governance of An Post.  Operational matters relating to the company’s retail business, including the post office network, are matters for the Board and management of An Post. Nonetheless, I am acutely conscious of the value placed by communities in both rural and urban areas on services provide...

33. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the policy in terms of progress towards changes in services available through the post office network or broadening services to maintain a viable network of post offices and maintain an efficient postal delivery service. (Question 18029/18 asked on 25 Apr 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 29 and 33 together.
As Minister, I am responsible for the postal sector including the governance of An Post.  Operational matters relating to the company’s retail business, including the post office network, are matters for the Board and management of An Post. Nonetheless, I am acutely conscious of the value placed by communities in both rural and urban areas on services provide...

73. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the date by which he will publish An Post’s strategic plan for the future of the post office network; if he is satisfied with the implementation of the An Post business network development group report; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 7466/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The Strategic Plan referred to in the Question is An Post’s Strategic Plan and publication of same is a matter for An Post. Government was briefed on the plan in November last.
The strategic plan harnesses the company’s existing strengths such as its nationwide reach, trusted brand and the relationship of postmasters with communities, both rural and urban. At the same time, An Post has recognised that it must em...

77. Deputy Sean Sherlock asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the interaction he has had with an organisation (details supplied) on the future sustainability of the post office network. (Question 7341/18 asked on 14 Feb 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector including the governance of An Post.  Operational matters relating to the company’s retail business, including the post office network, are matters for the Board and management of An Post. Nonetheless, I am acutely conscious of the value placed by communities in both rural and urban areas on services provided b...

555. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the amount budgeted for the preparation and publication of the post office business network development group report. (Question 7494/18 asked on 13 Feb 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): The total amount paid by my Department for the preparation and publication of the Post Office Network Business Development Group Report, which was Chaired by Mr Bobby Kerr, was €41,327. This Report was published on 20 January 2016 and is available on my Department’s website at www.dccae.gov.ie.
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465. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the conditions of the €30 million granted to An Post in 2017, in particular the conditions regarding the operation of post offices; the position regarding the future provision of post offices across the country; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 2866/18 asked on 23 Jan 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): In response to the challenges facing An Post, the Board has overseen the preparation of a comprehensive strategic plan, the objective of which is to secure the long term viability of both the post office and mails businesses and return the company to a sound financial footing. Government is fully supportive of An Post in its endeavours. Reflecting its commitment to sustaining a nationwide post office network and...

1266. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the measures his Department is taking to ensure the viability of the rural post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 54555/17 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1266 and 1267 together. 
In response to the challenges facing An Post, the Board has overseen the preparation of a comprehensive strategic plan, the objective of which is to secure the long term viability of both the post office and mails businesses and return the company to a sound financial footing.  Government is fully supportive of An Post in its endeavours. Reflecting its c...

1267. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the status of discussions that are taking place between his Department and postmasters with regard to ensuring the post office network is protected; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 54556/17 asked on 16 Jan 2018 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1266 and 1267 together. 
In response to the challenges facing An Post, the Board has overseen the preparation of a comprehensive strategic plan, the objective of which is to secure the long term viability of both the post office and mails businesses and return the company to a sound financial footing.  Government is fully supportive of An Post in its endeavours. Reflecting its c...

517. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the details of the recent approval to provide €30 million of funding to protect the future of the post office network and the continuation of a five-day week postal delivery service, in particular regarding key performance indicators; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 50124/17 asked on 28 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 517, 520 and 523 together.
As I indicated to the House last week, the Government has agreed to make €30m available in State funding to An Post. The funds will be provided by way of a long term loan advanced from the Exchequer. The €30m will be used to support the renewal of the post office network (€15m) and the continued fulfilment of a 5 day per week mails delivery service (€...

520. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the position regarding his investment plans for the post office network (details supplied); the timeframe for their introduction; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 50389/17 asked on 28 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 517, 520 and 523 together.
As I indicated to the House last week, the Government has agreed to make €30m available in State funding to An Post. The funds will be provided by way of a long term loan advanced from the Exchequer. The €30m will be used to support the renewal of the post office network (€15m) and the continued fulfilment of a 5 day per week mails delivery service (€...

523. Deputy Joan Collins asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment further to his statement on 21 November 2017 (details supplied) if this type of community banking is linked in with the model (details supplied) of public banking in Germany. (Question 50521/17 asked on 28 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 517, 520 and 523 together.
As I indicated to the House last week, the Government has agreed to make €30m available in State funding to An Post. The funds will be provided by way of a long term loan advanced from the Exchequer. The €30m will be used to support the renewal of the post office network (€15m) and the continued fulfilment of a 5 day per week mails delivery service (€...

37. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications; Climate Action and Environment the implementation status of the Kerr report and the date by which the strategic plan for the network will be published. (Question 49411/17 asked on 21 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Deputy Timmy Dooley: The Minister will be aware of the report which Bobby Kerr was commissioned to write with the Government’s blessing and possibly its financial support, with the acquiescence of the postmasters and with An Post. Bobby Kerr wrote a comprehensive report which was aimed at securing the future of the post office network. When the report was published, it was strongly supported in this House and the Government gave commitments here, both in writing and orally. Scarcely anything ...

40. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Communications; Climate Action and Environment the policy in terms of progress towards changes in services available through the post office network or broadening services to maintain a viable network of post offices. (Question 49250/17 asked on 21 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Deputy Timmy Dooley: The Minister will be aware of the report which Bobby Kerr was commissioned to write with the Government’s blessing and possibly its financial support, with the acquiescence of the postmasters and with An Post. Bobby Kerr wrote a comprehensive report which was aimed at securing the future of the post office network. When the report was published, it was strongly supported in this House and the Government gave commitments here, both in writing and orally. Scarcely anything ...

79. Deputy Brendan Smith asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the measures he plans to implement to support the post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 49038/17 asked on 21 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I refer to the reply to Priority Questions Nos. 37 and 40 on today’s order paper.
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386. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the action he has taken to implement the recommendations of a report (details supplied); and the allocation he will include in his budget for 2018 to support the recommendations included in the report designed to put the post office network on a sustainable footing. (Question 47695/17 asked on 14 Nov 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector including the governance of An Post. Operational matters relating to the company’s retail business, including the post office network, are matters for the Board and management of An Post. I appreciate that there is concern regarding the potential closure of post offices and the potential number involved. How...

525. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his views on reports in the media (details supplied) which report 400 post office closures throughout the country; his plans regarding same; if an assurance can be given to postmasters on this issue; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42234/17 asked on 10 Oct 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 525 and 528 together. 
I refer to the reply to Question No 22 of 4 October and to the topical issues debate on post offices in the House on the same date.
It is Government policy that An Post remains a strong, viable company in a position to provide a high quality, nationwide postal service and that it maintains a nationwide customer-focused network of post offices in the commun...

528. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the outstanding recommendations of the post office network business development group; the estimated cost of implementing all recommendations; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42337/17 asked on 10 Oct 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 525 and 528 together. 
I refer to the reply to Question No 22 of 4 October and to the topical issues debate on post offices in the House on the same date.
It is Government policy that An Post remains a strong, viable company in a position to provide a high quality, nationwide postal service and that it maintains a nationwide customer-focused network of post offices in the commun...

22. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans to address concerns that wholesale closures of post offices are imminent; his further plans for the post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 42100/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - Post Office Network)

Deputy Timmy Dooley: A procurement process has been under way for some time around the national broadband plan. The national broadband plan has been in the offing since 2012. At this stage, could the Minister give us some indication as to the date on which every premises in the country will be connected and can he give us some idea of a date when, or even within a range within which, the contractor might begin work on the roll-out of the plan?
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62. Deputy Brian Stanley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his views on changes with An Post, both retail and mail businesses; and the steps he plans to take in the coming months to ensure that services are protected. (Question 41833/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 62 and 81 together.
As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector including the governance of An Post to ensure that the company is fully compliant with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies and the governance functions included in the statutory framework underpinning An Post.  Operational matters relating...

81. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment his plans to address concerns that wholesale closures of post offices are imminent; his further plans for the post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 41898/17 asked on 04 Oct 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 62 and 81 together.
As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector including the governance of An Post to ensure that the company is fully compliant with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies and the governance functions included in the statutory framework underpinning An Post.  Operational matters relating...

183. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the way in which his Department plans to invest in the post office network to secure local access to services in both urban and rural communities; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39926/17 asked on 21 Sep 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 to 185, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector, including the governance of An Post to ensure that the company is fully compliant with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State bodies and the governance functions included in the statutory framework underpinning An Post.  Operational ma...

184. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he will liaise with the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection to prevent the promotion of commercial banks by his Department to the detriment of the post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39927/17 asked on 21 Sep 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 to 185, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector, including the governance of An Post to ensure that the company is fully compliant with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State bodies and the governance functions included in the statutory framework underpinning An Post.  Operational ma...

185. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment when he plans to authorise the implementation of the government services identified in a report (details supplied) through the post office network; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39928/17 asked on 21 Sep 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment (Deputy Denis Naughten): I propose to take Questions Nos. 183 to 185, inclusive, together.
As Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment, I am responsible for the postal sector, including the governance of An Post to ensure that the company is fully compliant with the Code of Practice for the Governance of State bodies and the governance functions included in the statutory framework underpinning An Post.  Operational ma...

676. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development if his attention has been drawn to a matter (details supplied) that could impact on the survival of rural post offices; his plans to address this; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39673/17 asked on 20 Sep 2017 - Post Office Network)

Minister for Rural and Community Development (Deputy Michael Ring): This matter is not within my remit. The organisation referred to by the Deputy is a statutory body under the remit of the Minister for Education and Skills.
The Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment is responsible for policy matters related to An Post.
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