In advance of the announcement of details of the decentralisation programme in budget 2004, I received submissions on behalf of over 130 centres throughout the State. Some 53 locations, including Monaghan, have been designated for the relocation of approximately 9,000 posts.
Locations for a further 1,300 or so jobs will be identified at a later stage. As I said in my budget speech, I believe that the total number of posts to be relocated should be closer to 12,000 and I will examine further options in this regard once the programme is well under way.
The case for Monaghan receiving a second decentralised office can be given due consideration in the decision making process leading to the identification of locations for the remaining posts.