An Garda Síochána and the Courts Service due before PAC to discuss expenditure

Officials from An Garda Síochána and the Courts Service will be before the Public Accounts Committee tomorrow when the Committee meets to deal with the Garda Appropriation Accounts 2015, specifically, Vote 20 (Garda Síochána) and Vote 22 (Courts Service).

12 July 2017

The Committee will consider the 2015 expenditure of An Garda Síochána and the Courts Service, which amounted to €1.5 billion and €107.1m respectively.

Committee Chairman, Seán Fleming TD, said, “Tomorrow’s meeting will give  the Committee an opportunity to discuss the 2015 expenditure of An Garda Síochána and Courts Service and how they finance their work.”

“There are a number of issues Members will wish to raise with An Garda Síochána, such as, the proper management, recording and storage of property taken into the possession of An Garda Síochána, both evidential and non-evidential. This was the most frequently occurring financial and reputational risk identified by Internal Audit in 2015. Procurement and what measures have been taken to minimise the level of procurement that takes place without a competitive process is another area of significant concern to the PAC.  Payroll overpayments seem to be increasing within An Garda Síochána and we will want the reasons for these overpayments addressed, so as to ensure efficiency and accuracy at all times. Legal costs and the increased level of civil claims other than those involving Garda vehicles is another area Members will want to examine.”

“When we turn to the Courts Service, we will wish to raise issues around commercial bank accounts and where these accounts are located; how oversight and control is exercised over these funds. There is also the matter of a refurbishment loan for Washington St (Cork) courthouse. The expected total spend on the project is €25m and PAC Members will be keen to know the details of the loan arrangement and assess the rationale for this  approach, as a commercial loan is not the normal way Departments or Votes finance these types of projects.  Members will also be interested in raising  matters in relation to Wards of Court, on which we have received considerable correspondence“

The meeting will start at 9am in Committee Room 3.

ENDS/

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Committee Membership:

Chairperson: Seán Fleming (Fianna Fáil)

Bobby Aylward  (Fianna Fáil)
Peter Burke (Fine Gael)
Shane Cassells  (Fianna Fáil)
Catherine Connolly  (Independent)
David Cullinane  (Sinn Féin)
Alan Kelly (Labour)
Marc MacSharry  (Fianna Fáil)
Mary Lou McDonald (Sinn Féin)
Noel Rock (Fine Gael)
Catherine Murphy (Social Democrats-Green Party Group)