Land Issues

Questions (551)

Finian McGrath

Question:

551. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if he will provide statistics for the number of hectares of leased and rented land by county for the most recent years available. [13111/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The data requested by the Deputy are set out in the table.

2011 2012

COUNTY

RENTED

LEASED

RENTED

LEASED

CARLOW

10,679.11

6,002.27

10,784.21

5,537.73

CAVAN

18,680.98

12,504.11

19,062.82

12,531.53

CLARE

17,571.11

15,310.27

18,126.59

15,389.48

CORK

69,897.30

61,937.69

69,768.51

62,168.77

DONEGAL

33,590.00

24,688.35

32,832.48

24,848.46

DUBLIN

14,496.83

1,869.65

13,904.61

1,872.79

GALWAY

32,544.58

27,653.47

32,496.87

27,704.69

KERRY

29,262.20

33,412.51

28,860.74

32,973.34

KILDARE

23,662.94

6,436.77

23,809.91

7,081.08

KILKENNY

21,865.30

15,130.00

21,457.21

16,340.81

LAOIS

14,892.24

9,815.59

14,624.26

9,850.24

LEITRIM

13,252.41

9,026.33

13,932.80

9,124.50

LIMERICK

29,263.78

17,771.91

30,237.27

17,517.09

LONGFORD

9,355.66

6,301.75

9,652.79

6,137.40

LOUTH

17,565.15

3,831.21

17,529.45

4,039.36

MAYO

25,243.76

22,933.65

25,908.16

23,179.56

MEATH

43,093.15

12,157.28

43,224.28

12,288.03

MONAGHAN

14,782.41

10,507.03

14,957.25

10,860.99

OFFALY

15,894.23

10,005.24

16,090.90

10,012.41

ROSCOMMON

20,509.05

10,853.99

21,212.30

10,931.05

SLIGO

13,948.84

8,399.42

14,203.19

8,424.59

TIPPERARY

45,683.79

36,971.81

46,306.91

35,627.76

WATERFORD

17,573.63

16,020.10

17,311.44

16,439.79

WESTMEATH

18,143.96

10,533.90

18,389.79

10,215.29

WEXFORD

29,114.56

20,727.39

29,379.23

20,099.46

WICKLOW

25,649.27

8,047.08

26,100.29

8,363.04

TOTAL

626,216.24

418,848.77

630,164.26

419,559.24

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

Questions (552)

Finian McGrath

Question:

552. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if he will list in tabular form the disadvantaged areas scheme payments made on a county basis for the years 2010, 2011 and 2012. [13113/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The data sought by the Deputy is set out in the tables.

Table 1

Payments under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme

County Name

Net Amount

Carlow

€1,447,162.32

Cavan

€9,916,121.36

Clare

€13,871,261.29

Cork

€15,231,294.03

Donegal

€17,421,595.26

Dublin

€247,016.28

Galway

€23,883,077.09

Kerry

€17,496,204.20

Kildare

€820,916.23

Kilkenny

€3,471,688.59

Laois

€3,168,473.23

Leitrim

€7,151,434.59

Limerick

€5,344,532.90

Longford

€4,957,667.42

Louth

€1,134,320.80

Mayo

€22,580,308.10

Meath

€2,290,167.01

Monaghan

€7,628,109.20

Offaly

€4,460,518.75

Roscommon

€11,840,792.34

Sligo

€8,017,168.92

Tipperary

€8,974,475.92

Waterford

€2,699,416.18

Westmeath

€5,033,067.18

Wexford

€2,338,061.74

Wicklow

€3,865,788.64

Table 2

Payments under the 2011 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme

County Name

Net Amount

Carlow

€1,635,191.24

Cavan

€10,279,604.74

Clare

€14,545,337.31

Cork

€16,679,768.94

Donegal

€19,296,783.22

Dublin

€289,283.80

Galway

€25,971,767.23

Kerry

€18,755,079.94

Kildare

€983,569.32

Kilkenny

€3,929,837.12

Laois

€3,529,075.80

Leitrim

€7,688,253.54

Limerick

€5,969,534.96

Longford

€5,157,189.81

Louth

€1,294,359.20

Mayo

€24,584,500.48

Meath

€2,521,204.54

Monaghan

€7,981,280.13

Offaly

€4,867,596.85

Roscommon

€12,367,572.41

Sligo

€8,633,227.04

Tipperary

€9,925,801.81

Waterford

€3,199,150.26

Westmeath

€5,401,438.86

Wexford

€2,755,646.70

Wicklow

€4,254,934.29

Table 3

Payments under the 2010 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme

County Name

Net Amount

Carlow

€1,629,820.60

Cavan

€10,298,662.95

Clare

€14,546,087.69

Cork

€16,702,743.56

Donegal

€19,088,055.70

Dublin

€280,997.91

Galway

€25,988,942.31

Kerry

€18,734,236.42

Kildare

€995,520.87

Kilkenny

€3,935,858.59

Laois

€3,535,752.39

Leitrim

€7,619,949.45

Limerick

€5,961,662.63

Longford

€5,139,259.97

Louth

€1,292,690.90

Mayo

€24,413,531.40

Meath

€2,496,096.49

Monaghan

€7,987,685.32

Offaly

€4,878,658.93

Roscommon

€12,395,621.24

Sligo

€8,643,591.20

Tipperary

€9,935,861.08

Waterford

€3,206,670.74

Westmeath

€5,379,865.73

Wexford

€2,781,923.44

Wicklow

€4,253,970.64

Disadvantaged Areas Scheme Payments

Questions (553)

Éamon Ó Cuív

Question:

553. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine when a decision will be made on a derogation appeal in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; the reason for the delay in deciding this appeal; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [13120/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The person named is one of a number of applicants under the 2012 Disadvantaged Areas Scheme, whose cases are impacted by the requirement of a minimum stocking density of 0.3 livestock units per forage hectare in 2011 and who applied for and were refused derogation in this regard. The person named subsequently submitted additional information to my Department which showed that this requirement had been satisfied, thereby allowing processing to be recently finalised. Payment will shortly issue to the nominated bank account.

Child Care Services Inquiry

Questions (554)

Mary Lou McDonald

Question:

554. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will provide in tabular form the number of child minders advisory officers posts that she has withdrawn here by 28 February 2013 broken down by city and county; and the measures she will take to provide the necessary training and supports lost to providers of child minding services. [12796/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

In 2002, the Health Service Executive (HSE) agreed to fund a Childminding Advisory Officer post in each county, who would work with the 33 City and County Childcare Committees (CCCs) funded under the Childcare Programme, implemented by the then Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. While Childminding Advisory Officers were established in most county areas they were not always located with the local CCC.

In recent years, HSE funding for the Childminding Advisory Officer posts has gradually decreased, and is no longer in place in some areas. I asked officials in my Department to engage with the City and County Childcare Committees (CCCs) on this issue and to establish the position in relation to these posts in each city and county childcare committee area. A table which outlines the position as indicated by the CCCs is being collated and will issued directly to the Deputy in the coming days.

The responses received do reflect the reduction in support for these post which I understand is due to pressure on HSE resource and the need to prioritise funding to other areas of front-line services. While this is not a welcome development, I would point to the fact that the CCCs are now well-established and effective bodies at local level, and that supporting the childminding sector is an integral part of their work. I am satisfied that childminders continue to have access to support, training and advice.

My Department provides annual funding to each CCC to enable them to support and advise all childcare providers at local level. In 2012, the total amount allocated to the CCCs was €11.3m. In addition, in 2012 my Department provided €220,000 to the CCCs for Childminding Development Grants. My Department also provides annual funding, totalling €2.85m in 2012, to seven National Voluntary Childcare Organisations to provide support at a local level to their members. This included €358,000 for Childminding Ireland, the representative body for childminders.

My Department has commenced work on Ireland's first Early Years Strategy. I have received Government approval for the approach I am taking in developing this Strategy as an innovative and dynamic blueprint for the future development of our Early Years sector, aimed at providing a coherent approach to seeking to improve the lives of children from birth to the age of six. One of the policy issues which I have identified for consideration in the preparation of the Early Years Strategy is the development of the child minding sector as a fully-integrated component of early childhood care and education, in particular for the under-one age group.

Child Protection Issues

Questions (555)

Mary Lou McDonald

Question:

555. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will provide in a tabular form the cuts she has imposed to the Empowerment Plus child protection services since she took office in 2011; the areas affected; and the measures she has taken to support or replace the lost services for vulnerable at risk children. [12797/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I have requested the information from the HSE and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.

Departmental Expenditure

Questions (556, 557)

Robert Troy

Question:

556. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the costs of providing hardware and software to her home and the home of Ministers of State in her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12362/13]

View answer

Robert Troy

Question:

557. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the costs of providing telephone in the homes of Ministers and Ministers of State in her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12380/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 556 and 557 together.

My Department does not incur any costs in relation to the provision of landline telephony services to my home. Equally there are no specific hardware or software costs associated with IT services as there are no personal computers, printers, faxes or broadband services provided in my home by the Department.

Departmental Expenditure

Questions (558, 559)

Robert Troy

Question:

558. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the cost of telephones and ICT provided to the constituency offices including monthly telephone bills of Ministers and Ministers of State in her Department since March 2011; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12399/13]

View answer

Robert Troy

Question:

559. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if any additional costs other than telephones, ICT and monthly telephone bills are being paid to constituency office by her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12417/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 558 and 559 together.

A total of €1,926 has been paid by my Department in respect of landline telephone services to my constituency office in Clondalkin, Dublin 22 since my Department was established in June 2011. There are no other direct costs incurred by my Department associated with the running of this office.

Departmental Expenditure

Questions (560)

Robert Troy

Question:

560. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of mobile telephones in use by her, Ministers of State and politically appointed staff; the total costs of the mobile telephones since March 2011; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12435/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

The information sought by the Deputy is currently being collated and will issue to the Deputy in the coming days.

Departmental Expenditure

Questions (561)

Robert Troy

Question:

561. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the cost of drivers of each vehicle assigned to her and Ministers of State in her Department since March 2011; the mileage and other costs claimed in respect of each since March 2011; the overall yearly costs of ministerial cars in 2010; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12453/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

In line with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform guidelines on ministerial appointments, I employ two civilian drivers on a week on/week off basis to drive my private car on official business. Each driver receives €631.75 per week in respect of these duties and are not entitled to claim overtime. A total of €118,800 has been paid in civilian driver salaries since 2011. Civilian drivers are entitled to claim subsistence payments in respect of certified official travel at the appropriate Civil Service rates and under the regulations applying to such subsistence. A total of €9,271 has been paid since 2011 in this regard.

In addition, mileage claims totalling €26,956 in respect of the use of my personal car have been paid since 2 June 2011. As my Department was only established in June 2011, figures relating to the cost of Ministerial transport in 2010 are not available.

Departmental Expenditure

Questions (562)

Robert Troy

Question:

562. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of credit cards issued to staff and Ministers in her Department and the total costs of each card since March 2011; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12472/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

There are two corporate credit cards currently in use in my Department for official business purposes only. A Bank of Ireland Visa credit card is issued to my Private Secretary and a second card is issued to a designated officer in my Department's Finance Unit. These cards are typically used to cover a range of costs such as that relating to official entertainment, accommodation, seminar and conference fees, annual membership fees, publications and software purchases.

The total cost of the cards since the establishment of the Department is currently being collated and will issue directly to the Deputy

Aftercare Services

Questions (563)

Colm Keaveney

Question:

563. Deputy Colm Keaveney asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her plans to provide for after school care funded or part funded from the Exchequer; if she is considering sub-letting, or some arrangement, school facilities to private operators to accommodate this care; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12598/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

As part of Budget 2013, together with my colleague, the Minister for Social Protection, I was pleased to announce a new After-School Childcare initiative, to be managed jointly by both Departments, which will be targeted at low-income families and supporting parents availing of employment opportunities.

Lack of access to affordable, quality childcare can be a barrier to low income and disadvantaged families when seeking to avail of work and training or educational opportunities. This new initiative, which is expected to receive full year funding of €14 million, will support parents to take up employment by providing over 6,000 quality after-school places for children attending primary school. This initiative is in line with the Government's overall strategy to support parents of low income families to take up employment and demonstrates how Departments are working together to deliver the Government's agenda on promoting employment and supporting children's development.

The after-school places, as with those funded under the Childcare Education and Training Support (CETS) and Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) programmes, are expected to be available in both commercial and community providers.

Officials in both my own Department and the Department of Social Protection are currently working to finalise the details of the after-school scheme and its operational arrangements including such matters as accountability and eligibility, and responsibility for same. As soon as this work has been completed, further information will be made available.

It is intended to encourage the provision of after school services in primary school settings. I understand that it is the policy of the Department of Education and Skills, who have responsibility for primary school education, to encourage schools to share their facilities with community groups and organisations. My Department also favours the location of pre-school facilities and after-school facilities on or adjacent to primary school grounds where possible.

However, the vast majority of national schools are not owned by the State and while I understand that the Trustees and Boards of Management of these schools have been encouraged to respond positively to requests for school facilities to be shared, their right to prioritise the interests of the principal school users must be recognised. Therefore any decision in relation to the use of school premises for an after-school or pre-school programme ultimately lies with the relevant Board or Trustees and my Department would not have a role in this matter.

Child Protection Issues

Questions (564)

Róisín Shortall

Question:

564. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her views on the role of child art psychotherapy in Child Welfare and Protection Services; if she intends to make such psychotherapeutic services available to children who are involved with child protection social workers; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12670/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I have requested the information from the HSE and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.

Youth Services Provision

Questions (565, 566)

Róisín Shortall

Question:

565. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will provide details of the funding allocation made to the CDYSB for each of the past five years with details of the element of this which was for the running of the CDYSM itself in each year; and if she will outline the steps that are being taken to ameliorate the most negative impacts on youth services of the significant funding allocation for the current year. [12733/13]

View answer

Róisín Shortall

Question:

566. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will explain the circumstance surrounding the recent downward revision of the 2013 budget allocation agreed last December with the CDYSB; and if she will outline the way it is proposed to achieve a further €600,000 in cuts in a manner that does do significant damage to existing services and where the burden is equitably shared. [12734/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 565 and 566 together.

Some €53.173m is being provided in 2013 by my Department to support the delivery of a range of youth work programmes and youth services for all young people, including those from disadvantaged communities, by the voluntary youth work sector. Youth work programmes and youth services are delivered to some 400,000 young people by over 1,400 youth work personnel, who in turn support a large volunteer base of some 40,000.

Having regard to the savings requirements identified in the Comprehensive Review of Expenditure (CRE) my Department has tried to ensure that, in the determination process for the funding allocations, the front line youth services, particularly those for the most vulnerable young people are protected as far as is possible from the impact of any necessary reductions in funding. The savings required under the Comprehensive Review of Expenditure in respect of this year amount to €5.393m which equates to almost a 10% reduction on 2012 funding.

The reduced allocation in the youth budget in recent years has required much tighter budget management and prioritisation. In the course of recent months I, along with officials of my Department have met with representatives of the youth sector on an ongoing basis with a view to determining how best to minimise the impact of the reduction in the 2013 budget on youth services in the challenging budgetary situation that we face at this time.

The funding is administered on behalf of my Department by some 33 bodies including Vocational Education Committees (VECs), Local Authorities, HSE and some sporting bodies. These administering bodies were notified of the 2013 funding allocation to projects in their respective areas in recent weeks.

In order to try and maximise the use of the funding available for youth services and programmes, my Department has afforded flexibility to the bodies administering funding on behalf of my Department to propose the reconfiguration of the allocations provided having regard to the knowledge available to these bodies about the needs of young people at local level. Any proposals or recommendations made by a body administering funding on behalf of my Department, in relation to the distribution of funding in its locality, requires the approval of my Department before they are implemented.

In this context the City of Dublin Youth Service Board (CDYSB), as the local grant administering body in the Dublin City area, submitted proposals last week to my Department requesting that percentage reductions, different to those outlined in the CRE, would be applied to the projects in the Dublin City area. CDYSB's proposed rationale is to seek to minimise disruption to frontline youth provision and to protect smaller projects.

It should be noted that under the CDYSB proposals the majority of projects would receive a significantly lower reduction than 10 per cent. However, as a consequence of that, CDYSB have proposed that some larger projects would receive greater reductions.

The CDYSB proposals and the final allocations which will be made to each project, are currently being considered by my Department and at my request officials of my Department met with CDYSB on Friday 1st March to discuss the proposals. My Department will advise CDYSB of the outcome very shortly.

Details of the overall funding allocations to CDYSB for the years 2008 to 2012 for the projects administered by that body under the Special Projects for Youth Scheme, the Young People’s Facilities and Services Fund Rounds 1 and 2, the Local Drugs Task Force scheme together with the operational central administration costs in respect of CDYSB for the years 2008 to 2012 are outlined hereunder in tabular form.

Funding Schemes

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

14,891,663

15,266,221

14,733,827

14,053,650

13,107,529

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

226,126

173,099

179,990

212,037

153,180

Central administrative costs of the City of Dublin Youth Service Board provide for the following:

- IT and computer maintenance

- Wages for 1 cleaner

- Utilities, light and heat

- Equipment

- Maintenance of premises

- Staff travel

- Telecommunications

- Office expenses

It should be noted that under the CRE there has been no cut to the funding being provided to support local voluntary youth clubs. This modest funding (in excess of a million euro) plays an important role in supporting volunteer-led youth groups and in promoting and leveraging valuable voluntary activity in youth work.

In addition to the current funding provided by my Department, €1.5 million in capital funding is also being provided in 2013 for youth cafés and youth projects. My Department will be announcing further details regarding the application process for the 2013 funding programmes very shortly. This follows on from funding of €500,000 which was provided in 2012 for the development of a number of youth cafés which had applied for previous youth café funding schemes

With respect to future funding provision, my Department has commenced a comprehensive Value for Money Review of youth funding and this is expected to report later this year.

My Department has also prioritised the improvement of quality provision in youth work through publication and ongoing implementation of a National Quality Standards Framework for youth work. The Department has also developed National Quality Standards for Volunteer-led youth groups which were launched on Monday of last week.

Child Care Services Inquiry

Questions (567)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

567. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will provide a list of all private residential child care centres including the names of the providers and the owners of the centres; the number of staff in each of the centres; and the level of training and qualifications attained by each member of staff in such centres. [13031/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I have requested the information from the HSE and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.

Children in Care

Questions (568)

Thomas P. Broughan

Question:

568. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will provide, in tabular form, the number of children in the care of the State placed in private residential child care centres at present; the cost of each placement; the reasons for the selection of private providers for each placement; the duration of each placement with private providers; the level of inspection carried out by the Health Service Executive or the Health Information and Quality Authority of such services; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [13032/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Children)

I have requested the information from the HSE and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.