Thursday, 26 February 2004

Questions (99)

John Deasy

Question:

98 Mr. Deasy asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform if the meetings of bodies referred to in section 31(2)(a) of the Garda Bill 2004 will be principally held in public. [6291/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform)

The working arrangements for the joint policing committees, which it is proposed to establish under section 32, will be addressed in guidelines to be agreed between my colleague, the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government and myself. I will have particular regard, in agreeing guidelines, to the desirability of the greatest possible degree of openness and transparency consistent with effectiveness in the operation of the committees.

I have to respect the fact that the Garda Síochána Bill will be debated next week in the Seanad and it would be inappropriate if in this House were to pre-empt its discussions on any aspect of the Bill. I do not wish therefore to start going into any more detail on items which are appropriate to the Second Stage or Committee Stage debate on the Bill.