1. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Taoiseach if he will report on his Department’s plans to conduct market research. (Question 41633/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Departmental Communications)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 to 6, inclusive, together. The strategic communications unit in my Department represents a step change in how we as a Government communicate with our people. It is about informing people of the work of Government in a co-ordinated, focused and cross-governmental way so that it becomes easier for people to understand what the Government is doing and the full range of State services, benefits and entitlements available to people, both new and cur...

2. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach if he will report on changes to his Department’s website; and if changes are being made to merrionstreet.ie. (Question 41863/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Departmental Communications)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 to 6, inclusive, together. The strategic communications unit in my Department represents a step change in how we as a Government communicate with our people. It is about informing people of the work of Government in a co-ordinated, focused and cross-governmental way so that it becomes easier for people to understand what the Government is doing and the full range of State services, benefits and entitlements available to people, both new and cur...

3. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach if he will report on plans in his Department to conduct market research. (Question 42741/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Departmental Communications)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 to 6, inclusive, together. The strategic communications unit in my Department represents a step change in how we as a Government communicate with our people. It is about informing people of the work of Government in a co-ordinated, focused and cross-governmental way so that it becomes easier for people to understand what the Government is doing and the full range of State services, benefits and entitlements available to people, both new and cur...

4. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Taoiseach if he will report on the advertising undertaken by his Department. (Question 43749/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Departmental Communications)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 to 6, inclusive, together. The strategic communications unit in my Department represents a step change in how we as a Government communicate with our people. It is about informing people of the work of Government in a co-ordinated, focused and cross-governmental way so that it becomes easier for people to understand what the Government is doing and the full range of State services, benefits and entitlements available to people, both new and cur...

5. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach if he will report on changes to his Department’s website; and if changes are planned in respect of the website of the Government Information Service, merrionstreet.ie. (Question 43823/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Departmental Communications)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 to 6, inclusive, together. The strategic communications unit in my Department represents a step change in how we as a Government communicate with our people. It is about informing people of the work of Government in a co-ordinated, focused and cross-governmental way so that it becomes easier for people to understand what the Government is doing and the full range of State services, benefits and entitlements available to people, both new and cur...

6. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach the status of the commitment in his own Department’s strategy statement to examine the balance of power and responsibility between the government and the civil service. (Question 43829/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Departmental Communications)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 to 6, inclusive, together. The strategic communications unit in my Department represents a step change in how we as a Government communicate with our people. It is about informing people of the work of Government in a co-ordinated, focused and cross-governmental way so that it becomes easier for people to understand what the Government is doing and the full range of State services, benefits and entitlements available to people, both new and cur...

7. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach when Cabinet Committee A (Economy) last met. (Question 41642/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Cabinet Committee Meetings)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 7 to 10, inclusive, together.
Cabinet Committee A held its first meeting on 12 September. Its focus is on economic issues, including implementation of the Action Plan for Jobs 2017 and preparation of a new, more focused, action plan for next year; labour market policies, including implementation of Pathways to Work and responding to emerging skills pressures; competitiveness and productivity challenges for businesses, including pressures from rece...

8. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach when Cabinet Committee A (Economy) last met; and when it is scheduled to meet again. (Question 42742/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Cabinet Committee Meetings)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 7 to 10, inclusive, together.
Cabinet Committee A held its first meeting on 12 September. Its focus is on economic issues, including implementation of the Action Plan for Jobs 2017 and preparation of a new, more focused, action plan for next year; labour market policies, including implementation of Pathways to Work and responding to emerging skills pressures; competitiveness and productivity challenges for businesses, including pressures from rece...

9. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Taoiseach when Cabinet Committee A (Economy) last met. (Question 43751/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Cabinet Committee Meetings)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 7 to 10, inclusive, together.
Cabinet Committee A held its first meeting on 12 September. Its focus is on economic issues, including implementation of the Action Plan for Jobs 2017 and preparation of a new, more focused, action plan for next year; labour market policies, including implementation of Pathways to Work and responding to emerging skills pressures; competitiveness and productivity challenges for businesses, including pressures from rece...

10. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Taoiseach when Cabinet Committee A (Economy) will next meet. (Question 43786/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Cabinet Committee Meetings)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 7 to 10, inclusive, together.
Cabinet Committee A held its first meeting on 12 September. Its focus is on economic issues, including implementation of the Action Plan for Jobs 2017 and preparation of a new, more focused, action plan for next year; labour market policies, including implementation of Pathways to Work and responding to emerging skills pressures; competitiveness and productivity challenges for businesses, including pressures from rece...

11. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach if he will report on his attendance at the EU digital summit in Tallinn, Estonia, on 29 September 2017. (Question 41635/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - EU Summits)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 11 to 16, inclusive, together.
The digital summit in Tallinn was an important opportunity for EU leaders to discuss the evolution of digital technologies and their wide-ranging implications in a less formal setting than regular European Council business. The Estonian Presidency prepared a very useful, forward-looking agenda to stimulate discussion on how Europe can develop its competitive advantages in a fast-changing digital world which is re-sha...

12. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach if he will report on the informal EU meeting he attended in Estonia; the issues that were discussed; the bilateral meetings he attended; and if bilateral meetings were held. (Question 42454/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - EU Summits)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 11 to 16, inclusive, together.
The digital summit in Tallinn was an important opportunity for EU leaders to discuss the evolution of digital technologies and their wide-ranging implications in a less formal setting than regular European Council business. The Estonian Presidency prepared a very useful, forward-looking agenda to stimulate discussion on how Europe can develop its competitive advantages in a fast-changing digital world which is re-sha...

13. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach if immigration to the EU was discussed in Estonia at the informal EU meeting. (Question 42459/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - EU Summits)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 11 to 16, inclusive, together.
The digital summit in Tallinn was an important opportunity for EU leaders to discuss the evolution of digital technologies and their wide-ranging implications in a less formal setting than regular European Council business. The Estonian Presidency prepared a very useful, forward-looking agenda to stimulate discussion on how Europe can develop its competitive advantages in a fast-changing digital world which is re-sha...

14. Deputy Paul Murphy asked the Taoiseach if he will report on his meetings at the recent European digital summit in Tallinn. (Question 43748/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - EU Summits)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 11 to 16, inclusive, together.
The digital summit in Tallinn was an important opportunity for EU leaders to discuss the evolution of digital technologies and their wide-ranging implications in a less formal setting than regular European Council business. The Estonian Presidency prepared a very useful, forward-looking agenda to stimulate discussion on how Europe can develop its competitive advantages in a fast-changing digital world which is re-sha...

15. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Taoiseach if he will report on his attendance at the EU digital summit in Estonia. (Question 43750/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - EU Summits)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 11 to 16, inclusive, together.
The digital summit in Tallinn was an important opportunity for EU leaders to discuss the evolution of digital technologies and their wide-ranging implications in a less formal setting than regular European Council business. The Estonian Presidency prepared a very useful, forward-looking agenda to stimulate discussion on how Europe can develop its competitive advantages in a fast-changing digital world which is re-sha...

16. Deputy Eamon Ryan asked the Taoiseach further to Parliamentary Question Nos. 1 to 7, inclusive, of 4 October 2017, the outcome of his meeting with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte on the margins of the European digital summit. (Question 43767/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - EU Summits)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 11 to 16, inclusive, together.
The digital summit in Tallinn was an important opportunity for EU leaders to discuss the evolution of digital technologies and their wide-ranging implications in a less formal setting than regular European Council business. The Estonian Presidency prepared a very useful, forward-looking agenda to stimulate discussion on how Europe can develop its competitive advantages in a fast-changing digital world which is re-sha...

75. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach the number of young persons aged 18 to 24 years of age signing on the live register at each of the 25 Intreo offices in the Dublin city and county area, in tabular form. (Question 44159/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - Live Register Data)

Minister of State at the Department of the Taoiseach (Deputy Joe McHugh): The Live Register series provides a monthly breakdown of the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Benefit, Jobseeker’s Allowance and other registrants as registered with the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection. 
The most recent Live Register figures available are for September 2017.
The following table shows the number of persons under 25 years of age on the Live Register in Dublin City and County Intre...

76. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Taoiseach when the vacancies on the National Economic and Social Council will be filled. (Question 44165/17 asked on 18 Oct 2017 - National Economic and Social Council)

The Taoiseach: I appoint members to the National Economic and Social Council (NESC) in accordance with the provisions of the National Economic and Social Development Office Act 2006. The legislation provides for nominations from five sectors - business and employer, ICTU, farming and agricultural, community and voluntary, and environmental. I also appoint up to 6 public servants and 8 independent members.
All appointments to the Council with the exception of a small number of independent memb...

1. Deputy Michael Moynihan asked the Taoiseach if he will report on the newly formed Cabinet committees.. (Question 40543/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Cabinet Committees)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 and 2 together.
I have reorganised the Cabinet committee structure to streamline political oversight and to focus the work through a smaller number of Cabinet sub-committees which are convened as necessary. 
The Government has established the following six Cabinet committees, all of which I chair: 
Cabinet committee A, dealing with the economy; Cabinet committee B, dealing with social policy and public services; Cabinet committee C, on the Europ...

2. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach if he will report on the reorganisation of the Cabinet committee system. (Question 41637/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Cabinet Committees)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 1 and 2 together.
I have reorganised the Cabinet committee structure to streamline political oversight and to focus the work through a smaller number of Cabinet sub-committees which are convened as necessary. 
The Government has established the following six Cabinet committees, all of which I chair: 
Cabinet committee A, dealing with the economy; Cabinet committee B, dealing with social policy and public services; Cabinet committee C, on the Europ...

3. Deputy Michael Moynihan asked the Taoiseach the status of the reform of Seanad Éireann. (Question 40544/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Seanad Reform)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 3 and 15 together.
As the Deputy will be aware, in A Programme for a Partnership Government, the Government stated its commitment to pursuing the implementation of the report of the working group on Seanad reform, also known as the Manning report. That report was published in 2015 and it is available on my Department’s website. One of the recommendations of the report was the establishment of an implementation group to oversee implementation of t...

4. Deputy Brendan Howlin asked the Taoiseach to set out the number of political staff and advisors he has employed; and the role of each. (Question 41631/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Departmental Staff)

The Taoiseach: I look forward to the proponent explaining what a great idea it all is.
 ...

5. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach for details on the political staff and advisors employed by him in his Department; and the name, title, function, salary, terms of employment and location of each. (Question 41636/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Departmental Staff)

The Taoiseach: I look forward to the proponent explaining what a great idea it all is.
 ...

6. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Taoiseach to outline the policy areas that his appointed advisors have. (Question 41864/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Departmental Staff)

The Taoiseach: I look forward to the proponent explaining what a great idea it all is.
 ...

15. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Taoiseach the status of the implementation group on Seanad reform. (Question 42740/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Seanad Reform)

The Taoiseach: I propose to take Questions Nos. 3 and 15 together.
As the Deputy will be aware, in A Programme for a Partnership Government, the Government stated its commitment to pursuing the implementation of the report of the working group on Seanad reform, also known as the Manning report. That report was published in 2015 and it is available on my Department’s website. One of the recommendations of the report was the establishment of an implementation group to oversee implementation of t...