106. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed by her Department or in agencies funded by her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46412/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): My Department has undertaken no costing of the initiative outlined by the Deputy as the introduction of any such scheme would necessarily have to take place on a cross Governmental basis and costs determined centrally as part of the estimates budgetary process. On a purely indicative basis it is not anticipated that the introduction of such a scheme in my own Department would incur significant cost as the majority of staff are on...

107. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection the cost of extending social protection supports to the self-employed and permitting such persons to opt into the existing class A structure, paying the rate corresponding to their income level. (Question 46422/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Social Welfare Benefits Eligibility)

Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 76 and 107 together.
Self –employed persons who earn €5,000 or more in a contribution year are liable for PRSI at the class S rate of 4%, subject to a minimum payment of €500. These contributions entitle them to access social insurance benefits, including State pension (contributory), widow/widower or surviving civil partner’s (contributory) pension, guardians payment (contributory), maternity ben...

108. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection if she has examined a scheme that focuses on early-stage companies and rewards growth by offering exemptions from and reductions in employers’ pay-related social insurance relative to the number of staff employed or the company’s payroll bill, in 2016; the cost for the first additional employee taken on to be exempt from employers pay-related social insurance for a period of two years and for the next five employees, subject to a reduction of 50% on the first €50,000 of gross salary. (Question 46423/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Social Insurance)

Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): As my Department does not hold data on the stage of development of particular companies employing workers, it is not possible provide a cost for a scheme to exempt or reduce employer PRSI costs, to reward growth or additional employments in early stage companies. 
The issue of supporting companies in the early stages of their development needs to be considered in the broader context of the multitude of expenditure and tax instrume...

174. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Finance the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46406/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): I wish to advise the Deputy that based on the gross hours per week of 43.25 hours 16 of my staff are currently earning less than €11.50 an hour. If these salaries were raised to a minimum threshold of €11.50 an hour then the total additional cost to my Department per annum would be €62,670.63.
In relation to employees employed in agencies funded by my Department, there would be no additional cost if a minimum threshold of €11.50 was implemented. 
I c...

175. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Finance the steps he has taken to reduce shadow economy activity and to increase electronic payment transactions to counter such activity; if he has set targets for increased electronic payment transactions; the cost of meeting such targets; and if he will make a statement on the matter (Question 46418/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Black Economy)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Individuals and businesses that operate within the shadow economy gain an unfair competitive advantage compared to legitimate, tax compliant businesses and deprive the Exchequer of much needed revenues.  The Deputy will be aware that I have introduced a number of legislative measures in recent years aimed at countering the effects of shadow economy activity.  These include:
- the licensing regime for auto fuel traders which was strengthened to limit ...

176. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Finance the cost of extending the new self-employed tax credit introduced in budget 2016 to the 173,000 self-employed persons who will miss out and to persons omitted to an amount equal to the pay as you earn credit over a three year period; if this will encourage entrepreneurism; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46421/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Tax Credits)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): As the Deputy will be aware, the Earned Income Credit (EIC) of €550 for self-employed persons introduced in Budget 2016 will be available to an estimated 111,600 persons.  The EIC is available to taxpayers with active self-employed trading or professional income, and to business owner-managers who do not have access to the PAYE credit on salary income from their business.  
The figure of 173,000 quoted by the Deputy appears to be the difference betwe...

177. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Finance if he has examined adjusting the online betting duty level and the tax yield that would be raised by adjusting the duty to 1.5%, 2% and 2.5%. (Question 46426/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Tax Code)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that the estimated annual duty from online betting at the rates quoted is as outlined in the table. 
The deputy will be aware that the provision only commenced in August 2015, so full year amounts are still estimated. 
 Rate €m 1.5% 27 2.0% 36 2.5% 45 
 ...

205. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed, or in agencies funded by, his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46411/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): In response to the Deputy’s question the table below provides the annual cost of introducing a living wage minimal threshold gross salary of €11.50 for all employees in my Department, and those under my remit, are as follows:
 Organisation Annual Cost Department of Public Expenditure and Reform €685,539 Valuation Office €11,897 Institute of Public Administration As the lowest salary offered exceeds the living wage, ...

206. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the cost of transposing European Communities (Award of Public Authorities’ Contracts) Regulations 2006 (SI 329 of 2006). (Question 46416/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - EU Directives)

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): There was no cost over and above a proportion of the salary costs of the officials involved in the transposition of Directive 2004/18/EC via Statutory Instrument (S.I. No. 329 of 2006) during the period 2004 to 2006. At that time an experienced Assistant Principal was primarily involved in the transposition process along with support staff under the supervision of a Principal Officer. The Statutory Instrument itself was drafted ...

207. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if he has examined European Union guidance regarding social considerations for public procurement and enhancing opportunities for procurements in the small and medium sector and the cost of implementing such guidance (Question 46417/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Public Procurement Regulations)

Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): The inclusion of social considerations in public procurement contracts encourage suppliers to perform actions focussed on broader policy considerations. They can be used in public procurement in cases where they are targeted at factoring into the procurement process consideration of social issues such as employment opportunities, equal opportunities and social inclusion.  In order to be compatible with EU law, they must be made ...

232. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46409/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): I can advise the Deputy that remuneration of the staff of the Department is as sanctioned by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in line with Government policy.
Within the time available it has not been possible to calculate an exact figure. However, I can advise the Deputy that the annual additional salary cost to the Department of introducing a minimum hourly rate of €11.50 per hour is estimated to be approximat...

233. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the cost of prohibiting zero-hour and low-hour contracts in the workplace regulatory regime. (Question 46414/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Employment Rights)

Minister of State at the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Gerald Nash): Given the lack of uniformity around the definition of zero hour contracts and low hour contracts and the limitations of the data that exists in relation to such contracts, as highlighted in the recently published University of Limerick (UL) study, it is not possible to put a figure on the cost of prohibiting zero hour and low hour contracts in the existing regulatory regime.
I am currently engaged in a p...

234. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the cost incurred to meet the regional job targets as outlined in Enterprise 2025. (Question 46415/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Job Creation Data)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): Enterprise 2025, the Government’s long-term enterprise policy was launched in November this year. It is an ambitious strategy, with the objective of delivering growth over the next decade that is sustainable, led by strong export performance, builds on our sectoral strengths, and that is underpinned by innovation, productivity, cost effectiveness and competitiveness. We aim to build resilience into our economy so that we do ...

235. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the number of properties that have been established as development units for enterprise start-ups and the costs incurred in acquiring these, by county. (Question 46420/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Enterprise Ireland)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): There are a range of initiatives for the provision of space for start-up companies. These include community enterprise centres, incubation centres and business innovation centres.
I should point out that Enterprise Ireland does not have the management of a portfolio of industrial buildings available for leasing and letting within its remit. However to support the delivery of property solutions for entrepreneurs and micro-ent...

236. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation if he will establish a stand-alone national office to support young business entrepreneurs of 18 to 25 years of age that would provide training, mentoring and financial assistance; and the cost of establishing such an office. (Question 46424/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Youth Enterprise Initiatives)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 236 and 237 together.
The National Policy Statement on Entrepreneurship was published in October 2014. It sets out the Government’s strategic objectives as a facilitator within the Irish entrepreneurship ecosystem. It covers the six key elements that impact on entrepreneurs and start-ups and signposts the direction that policy will take in the coming years. This Policy Statement has as one of ...

237. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation if he will establish a programme for first-time young entrepreneurs of over 18 years of age to provide training and counselling for persons interested in a self-employment career path and the cost of establishing such a programme. (Question 46425/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Youth Enterprise Initiatives)

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation (Deputy Richard Bruton): I propose to take Questions Nos. 236 and 237 together.
The National Policy Statement on Entrepreneurship was published in October 2014. It sets out the Government’s strategic objectives as a facilitator within the Irish entrepreneurship ecosystem. It covers the six key elements that impact on entrepreneurs and start-ups and signposts the direction that policy will take in the coming years. This Policy Statement has as one of ...

292. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46399/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine (Deputy Simon Coveney): Based on introducing a minimal threshold hourly rate of €11.50, the estimated additional annual cost in 2016 for staff employed by my Department would be approximately €77,000, after the sanctioned increase of 2.5% under the Lansdowne Road Agreement is taken into account.
The parallel information in respect of State Bodies under the aegis of my Department is a matter for the Bodies themselves. 
 ...

311. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Defence the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46403/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Defence (Deputy Simon Coveney): The Defence Organisation includes military personnel, civil servants and civilian employees attached to military installations.
The pay structures and conditions of service of members of the Permanent Defence Force contain professional and technical remuneration elements in addition to allowances in the nature of pay which reflect the unique aspects of military life both at home and abroad. As such, the non-standard time and attendance patterns of mi...

390. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46410/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I can inform the Deputy that based on current staffing figures, the additional annual salary cost to my Department of implementing a living wage of €11.50 per hour is estimated to be €592,301 for 171 staff. 
These figures include bodies under the aegis of my Department with the exception of An Garda Síochána. I have asked An Garda Síochána to provide the information directly to the Deputy as soon as it is available.
 ...

403. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46401/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): My Department has not undertaken a specific costing exercise to determine the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for its employees and those employed in its agencies. However, on a purely indicative basis, it is not anticipated that the introduction of such a scheme in my own Department would incur significant cost as the majority of staff are on salary points above that mentioned by the Deputy.
 ...

488. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Health the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46408/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Health (Deputy Leo Varadkar): There would be only very minimal if any additional cost in respect of staff of my Department as the lowest gross annual salary would be at or about the equivalent of the €11.50 per hour referred to in your question. 
Information in respect of bodies under the aegis of my Department is being collated and will be forwarded to you as soon as possible. I have asked the HSE to respond to you directly on the matter. If you have not received a reply from the H...

535. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46407/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The potential cost of introducing an hourly rate of €11.50 per hour within the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade could be up to €500,000 per annum. This is dependent on the number of temporary staff employed in the Passport Service during the peak season and therefore very difficult to estimate. 
The remuneration of the staff of my Department is as sanctioned by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform in line with G...

592. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Education and Skills the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46404/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): The data requested by the Deputy is not collected or collated by my Department. There are over 3,700 individual employers in the education and training sector and it would require a disproportionate amount of time and administrative resources to gather the data sought by the Deputy.
 ...

668. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed by or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46405/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government (Deputy Alan Kelly): Payment of salaries to staff of my Department is made in line with pay scales approved by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. If a minimum payment of €11.50 an hour were introduced, the additional costs for my Department are estimated to be in the region of €10,850 (not including Employer’s PRSI). This figure reduces as and when the staff concerned progress along an incremental scale.
Material in respe...

687. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources the cost of implementing a living wage of €11.50 for all employees directly employed or in agencies funded by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46402/15 asked on 17 Dec 2015 - Living Wage)

Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (Deputy Alex White): My Department currently has 10 staff members who earn less than €11.50 gross per hour. The cost to my Department of introducing a minimum wage of €11.50 would be in the region of €42,000 per annum.
The salaries paid to employees of the bodies under the aegis of my Department are generally matters for those bodies. 
 ...