I propose to take Questions Nos. 102 and 125 together.
The decision to relocate the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism in Killarney will not affect the plans to develop and manage information technology in support of delivering the Department's objectives. The relocation will mean that the application and use of information technology will become central to the efficient delivery of services and communications.
The first statement of strategy 2003-05 of the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism provided for a review of the two information technology strategies of the former Departments of Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands and Tourism Sport and Recreation, and for the development of a new IT strategy for the period 2003 to 2006. This review has been carried out and a new IT strategy has been agreed.
The new strategy identifies a number of new projects to support delivery of objectives set out in the Department's mission statement. These comprise a specially made and developed management information system comprising a sophisticated financial accounting database system, the estimated cost of which to 2008 is €1.1 million; a new human resource management system comprising an enhanced database system developed on PeopleSoft-HRMS software — the PeopleSoft product was selected by the Department of Finance for development as the human resource management system for the Civil Service — the estimated cost of which is €172,000; and the installation of a new suite of security products for the Department's local area network to enhance the Department's ability to protect itself from potentially damaging scenarios associated with the world wide web. The main elements of the improved security resource comprise a superior anti-virus product with filtering capability and a firewall system capable of meeting the security requirements of the Government's data virtual private network link completed at the end of 2003, the cost of which was €23,000.
Additionally, the IT strategy provides for the ongoing replacement of network hardware and software as dictated by normal end-of-life scenarios, and an annual budget allocation of €150,000 is available to meet this need. If the Department is decentralised to a building in Killarney equipped with a modern networking architecture, it should be possible to relocate all the existing software and some of the hardware and systems to the new location. It is not anticipated that significant additional costs will accrue to the projects that can be attributed to decentralisation. Some additional hardware and connectivity costs may arise but it is too early to quantify these.