Written Answers. - Court Accommodation.

Michael Creed

Question:

160 Mr. Creed asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the position regarding the proposed repairs to Macroom courthouse, County Cork; and the timeframe he envisages for these repairs to be completed. [22286/98]

My Department funds the courts building programme which enables court-houses to be refurbished throughout the country in conjunction with local authorities which act as agents. Refurbishment projects are prioritised on the basis of certain criteria, including office locations, the number of sittings, caseload, etc. On this basis the venues located in county towns are getting priority as they usually accommodate the District and Circuit Courts and the High Court on Circuit and the offices of the District and Circuit Courts. On this basis, the old Model School in Cork was refurbished to accommodate the District Court and major refurbishment work is under way on the courthouse in Washington Street. Work will begin shortly on the refurbishment of Mallow courthouse, which accommodates the staff of the District Court office.

I understand minor improvement works were recently carried out at Macroom courthouse, mainly to the judge's chamber. Macroom courthouse will be fully refurbished as part of the courts building programme and, while it is at the planning stage, it is not possible to say when this work will be undertaken. I am committed to providing modern court facilities in the area in question as quickly as possible.