EU Directives

Questions (564)

Dara Calleary

Question:

564. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his plans to extend parental leave from 14 to 18 weeks. [8440/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I refer to the reply to Question No. 663 of 5 February 2013 where I indicated that I will shortly publish my proposals to transpose Parental Leave Directive 2010/18/EU which will extend parental leave from 14 to 18 weeks.

"I assume the Deputy is referring to the revised Parental Leave Directive 2010/18/EU which gives legal effect to the revised Framework

Agreement on Parental Leave, concluded by the European social partners (BUSINESSEUROPE, UEAPME, CEEP and ETUC).

At previously indicated, the Government approved the drafting of a Family Leave Bill to consolidate with amendments all such

leaves including maternity, adoptive, parental and carer's leave into one legislative act. This has been included in the

Government's legislative programme.

I will shortly publish my proposals in relation to the transposition of this Directive."

Garda Strength

Questions (565, 566, 567, 568, 569)

Frank Feighan

Question:

565. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current complement of gardaí working in the Longford Garda Division and the way in which that figure compares to figures from 2010, 2011 and 2012. [8592/13]

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Frank Feighan

Question:

566. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current complement of gardaí attached to the Roscommon part of the Roscommon/Longford Garda Division; and the way in which that figure compares to the figures in 2010, 2011 and 2012. [8593/13]

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Frank Feighan

Question:

567. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current complement of gardaí attached to Boyle Garda District; and the way in which that figure compares to the figures in 2010, 2011 and 2012. [8594/13]

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Frank Feighan

Question:

568. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current complement of gardaí attached to Castlerea Garda District; and the way in which that figure compares to the figures in 2010, 2011 and 2012. [8595/13]

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Frank Feighan

Question:

569. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current complement of gardaí attached to Roscommon Garda District; and the way in which that figure compares to the figures in 2010, 2011 and 2012. [8596/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 565 to 569, inclusive, together.

The Deputy will be aware that the Commissioner is responsible for the detailed allocation of resources, including personnel, throughout the organisation and I have no direct function in the matter. This allocation of resources is constantly monitored in the context of demographics, crime trends, policing needs and other operational strategies in place on a District, Divisional and Regional level to ensure optimum use is made of Garda resources and the best possible Garda service is provided to the public.

I have been informed by the Commissioner that the strengths of each Garda District in the Roscommon/Longford Garda Division for the years requested by the Deputy are as shown on the following table.

Division/District

2010

2011

2012

Longford/Roscommon Garda Division (Total)

301

286

280

Boyle Garda District

41

35

36

Castlerea Garda District

50

46

45

Roscommon Garda District

92

90

87

Granard Garda District

42

41

39

Longford Garda District

76

74

73

Garda Transport Data

Questions (570)

Frank Feighan

Question:

570. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the date the new consignment of Garda vehicles for the Roscommon/Longford Garda Division is scheduled to arrive; the number of vehicles in this new consignment; and the current allocations for the Roscommon/Longford Garda Division on a county basis. [8597/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

In the time available it has not been possible for the Garda authorities to supply the information requested by the Deputy. I will be in contact with the Deputy when the information is to hand.

Garda Transport Data

Questions (571, 572)

Frank Feighan

Question:

571. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the separate allocations in numerical terms of the new Garda vehicles allocated to Roscommon, Castlerea and Boyle Garda Districts. [8598/13]

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Frank Feighan

Question:

572. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of Garda vehicles currently attached to the Roscommon, Castlerea and Boyle Garda Districts; the breakdown for each of these Garda districts and the way in which these vehicle numbers compare to the figures in 2010, 2011 and 2012. [8599/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 571 and 572 together.

Decisions in relation to the provision and deployment of Garda transport are matters for the Garda Commissioner. Responsibility for the efficient deployment of all Garda vehicles in each Division is assigned to the Divisional Officer, who may allocate vehicles between Stations as required by operational circumstances.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that the allocation of Garda vehicles to the Roscommon, Castlerea and Boyle Garda Districts in the periods referred is provided in the following table:

District

18 February 2013

Dec. 2012

Dec. 2011

Dec. 2010

Roscommon

13

14

14

15

Castlerea

7

7

6

7

Boyle

7

6

5

4

Total

27

27

25

26

The Deputy will be aware that I made an additional €3 million available to An Garda Síochána towards the end of last year which enabled the Force to procure an additional 171 vehicles, bringing the total number of vehicles procured in 2012 to 213. The roll out of these vehicles to Garda Divisions throughout the country is ongoing and in that context, I have been informed by the Garda authorities that 30 of the vehicles are due to be allocated to the Garda Western Region which includes the Roscommon/Longford Division. A more detailed breakdown is not currently available and the Deputy will appreciate that the vehicles will be deployed in line with operational requirements.

A further allocation of €5 million has been provided for the purchase and fit-out of Garda transport in 2013. This represents a very considerable financial investment in Garda transport, particularly at a time when the level of funding available across the public sector is severely limited. It is a clear indication of my commitment to ensure that, to the greatest extent possible, An Garda Síochána are provided with sufficient resources to enable them to provide an effective and efficient policing service.

Garda Districts

Questions (573)

Frank Feighan

Question:

573. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his plans to amalgamate Boyle and Castlerea Garda Districts. [8600/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

In accordance with the provisions of the Garda Síochána Acts, proposals to change Garda District geographical boundaries are a matter in the first instance for the Garda Commissioner, in the context of his Annual Policing Plan.

The Garda Policing Plan for 2013 sets out the Commissioner's proposals to amalgamate a number of Garda Districts, including the Castlerea and Boyle Districts. The decision to amalgamate the relevant Districts follows on from a comprehensive review of current District structures carried out by the Garda authorities. This review was designed to identify strategic reforms which would lead to increased efficiencies, improved operational capacity and enhanced Garda service delivery.

In that context, I am advised by the Garda authorities that, following the amalgamation, a full and comprehensive policing service will continue to be delivered to the communities concerned.

Court Accommodation Refurbishment

Questions (574)

Charles Flanagan

Question:

574. Deputy Charles Flanagan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the total amount of money expended in the past ten years in respect of renovation and refurbishment works at the Court House, Edenderry, Co. Offaly; and if having regard to such sum and to the large catchment area currently served by Edenderry District Court that every consideration will be given to its continued operation. [8635/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy may be aware, under the provisions of the Courts Service Act 1998, management of the courts is the responsibility of the Courts Service. The Act provides that the Service is independent in the performance of its functions, including the maintenance and provision of courthouse facilities.

In order to be of assistance to the Deputy, I have had enquiries made and have been informed that the Courts Service has not expended any funds in relation to the refurbishment and renovation of the courthouse in Edenderry in the past ten years. However, a total of €430,000 was spent on completing a capital project in Edenderry Courthouse in 1998.

The Courts Service has indicated that it has been reviewing all aspects of its organisational and operational structures throughout the country with the specific objective of ensuring that the Service can continue to maintain the delivery of front line court services and an appropriate level of service to court users. I understand that no court venue has been singled out for or indeed exempted from the review and that Edenderry courthouse has been identified as a venue to be considered for closure subject to a detailed assessment and the preparation of a business case.

In this context the Courts Service has established a general framework within which such venues are being assessed taking into account a range of criteria such as caseload, proximity to an alternative venue, physical condition of the building, availability of cells etc. The likely impact on other Justice agencies, such as An Garda Síochána and the Irish Prison Service, is also taken into account. The review identified a range of venues nationwide which, based on the criteria applied, could be considered for closure subject to a detailed assessment and the preparation of a business case in respect of each identified venue which has now commenced.

However, the Courts Service has assured me that no decision in relation to the future of Edenderry Courthouse will be taken without prior consultation with local interested parties and court users. This consultation has commenced and the views received will be taken into account in the decision making process which will be a matter for the Courts Service Board.

Sentencing Policy

Questions (575)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

575. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his views on the current indefinite detention of a person (details supplied); the circumstances of their detention; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8674/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

The prisoner in question is detained on a committal order made by the High Court on 4 February 2013. In such circumstances, the Deputy will appreciate that it would be entirely inappropriate for me to comment on the case.