Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Forestry Pensioners.

29.

asked the Minister for Lands if he will state in respect of forestry pensioners for each county (a) the number of pensions in payment; (b) the number of pensions with the Paymaster-General for payment and awaiting payment; (c) the number of pensions in process; and (d) the amount of the first pension paid by his Department.

The answer to (a) and (b) of the Deputy's question is in the form of a tabular statement which with the permission of the Ceann Comhairle, I propose to circulate with the Official Report.

The Paymaster-General's office have been notified of a total of 82 supplementary pensions so far. Of this number 69 are being paid and the remainder will be paid on receipt of applications at the Paymaster-General's office from the men concerned. There are another 70 cases approximately awaiting examination and assessment. It is not possible to give the amount of the first pension paid as there were a number paid simultaneously, the amounts ranging from £233.16 per annum to £47.28 per annum.

Following is the statement:

County

Number of pensions being paid

Number of pensions awaiting payment

Carlow

1

Cavan

Clare

3

Cork

13

Donegal

6

Dublin

Galway

1

1

Kerry

1

1

Kildare

4

Kilkenny

1

Laois

3

1

Leitrim

1

Limerick

Longford

Louth

1

Mayo

2

Meath

Monaghan

1

Offaly

1

1

Roscommon

Sligo

Tipperary

10

4

Waterford

4

1

Westmeath

1

Wexford

4

1

Wicklow

11

3

Total

69

13

Will the Minister not agree that it seems very ridiculous that those people, some of whom have retired two years ago, are still awaiting pension and gratuity from his Department? If the Paymaster-General's Office is responsible for the delay, would he attempt to get his colleague, the Minister for Finance, Deputy Colley, to do something about it? Only today I had 20 applications from people who are almost 12 months out who have not got either gratuity or pension yet? It is a damn disgrace.

Mr. Flanagan

I will do the best I can.

I thank the Minister.