Written Answers. - IT Programme.

Bernard J. Durkan

Question:

58 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Education and Science if it is his or his Department's policy to reply to parliamentary questions via the Internet; his plans regarding further proposed extensions for the use of the Internet to conduct parliamentary business; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21866/02]

The answer is "No". As a member of the Committee on Procedure and Privileges the Deputy should be aware that such a major change in practice would require extensive consultation and agreement before being implemented. It could not be done on a unilateral basis.

It is arguable whether seeking information by way of parliamentary question which is freely available on a website is in fact parliamentary business and the best use of Oireachtas and Department resources.