IDA Site Visits

Questions (286)

Paudie Coffey

Question:

286. Deputy Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation if he will provide in tabular form the number of Industrial Development Agency site visits made to Waterford in the years 2010 to 2013, inclusive; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5371/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

I have been informed by IDA Ireland that there were 62 agency sponsored site visits by potential investors to County Waterford from 2010 to 2013 inclusive. Details of these site visits made to Waterford in each of the years from 2010 to 2013 are set out in the following tabular statement.

There are currently 28 IDA client companies employing over 5,000 people in Waterford city and county. I should also like to say that during 2013 there were two significant IDA investment announcements for Waterford. In February, Sanofi announced plans to invest €44m in Genzyme’s biotechnology campus in Waterford. This investment will increase the site’s diversity of products and comes on top of a €150m investment a little more than a year previously. The investment ensures that the Waterford facility, which currently employs approximately 500 people, can produce the company’s latest products and provides an indication of the Waterford site’s value to the company. In March, Nypro Healthcare announced plans to establish an additional state of the art medical devices facility in Waterford. This will result in the creation of over 200 new high quality jobs in the coming years. Furthermore, IDA Ireland has announced plans to build a new advanced manufacturing facility in Waterford to enhance the offering in the region to win new business.

There are many complex factors influencing investor location decision-making such as the increasing preference of investors globally for cities of scale with 1 million plus population, significant challenges from lower cost locations in the UK and Eastern Europe and attractive regional aid. To support IDA Ireland’s marketing efforts for the Region and Waterford, IDA Ireland has rolled out a dedicated digital marketing initiative for inward investment focusing on the South East Region and Waterford (Connect and Invest Waterford). Initiatives such as this can enhance the marketability of the location for investment at a very early stage in a perspective client’s decision-making process.

IDA remains a key supporter of the South East Employment Action Plan which brings together a number of stakeholders in addressing the persistent employment challenges faced in the South East Region. I have requested IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland to work with my Department so that we can explore what further initiatives we can take to ensure we have a better approach to enterprise development in regional locations. This exercise will complement the in-depth analysis of our FDI strategy which is currently being undertaken by Forfás and which will take account of factors such as key trends emerging in FDI best practice internationally, Ireland’s strengths in attracting FDI and any changes to the EU’s State Aid Rules, which will come into effect on 1 July 2014. The results of these two exercises will form the basis of IDA’s strategy from 2015 onwards.

It is important to note that the employment strategy for Waterford and the South East has not just focused on foreign investors. Companies such as Eistech, Dawn Meats, FeedHenry and Danone have been supported by my Department to create almost 900 jobs over the coming year.

Table showing the number of IDA Ireland sponsored site visits by potential investors to County Waterford in each of the years 2010 to 2013 inclusive

County Waterford

2010

2011

2012

2013

11

11

26

14

Intellectual Property Management

Questions (287)

Paudie Coffey

Question:

287. Deputy Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the number of jobs here supported by the protection of intellectual property rights; the importance of IP protections as part of Ireland’s offering for foreign direct investment; and the role he envisages for IP protections in Ireland’s future economic development. [5375/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

I can advise the Deputy that while it is not possible to place a quantum on the actual number of jobs in Ireland supported by Intellectual Property rights protection, a study carried out in 2013 establishes a clear link between Intellectual Property rights protection in terms of stimulating innovation and creativity leading ultimately to job creation.

The EU-wide study published in September 2013 was undertaken jointly by the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) and the European Patent Office and looked at the impact of Intellectual Property Rights on the European economy. Ireland’s rating in that study is very favourable. This can be attributed to the level of high quality foreign direct investment that we have successfully attracted to locate here. In the study, Ireland was rated first in terms of GDP share in all IPR-intensive industries in the EU, first for GDP share of copyright-intensive industries and, first for GDP share of trade mark-intensive industries. Ireland performs well also in relation to other rankings, positioned third in the EU for GDP share of patent-intensive industries and above average employment share in copyright-intensive industries. Ireland has the highest percentage of IP-intensive employment from industries based outside the European Union.

Corresponding to this study, it is encouraging and provides positive affirmation of our capabilities in this area that Ireland was ranked 10th in the context of the Global Innovation Index 2013 published in June 2013. This is the 6th edition of the Global Innovation Index and it evaluated 142 economies worldwide, using 84 indicators. Ireland had relative strengths in Knowledge & technology outputs, including knowledge creation, impact and diffusion, Business sophistication including knowledge workers, innovation linkages and knowledge absorption, Human capital & research, including education and research & development and the capacity of our Institutions, in particular the favourable regulatory and business environment.

In general, Intellectual property rights are an increasingly important aspect of how many companies are trading and doing business worldwide, adding value, branding recognition and ensuring certainty for creators and innovators. Through the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs, we have targeted key sectors to encourage job creation and growth in our economy with intellectual property rights forming an integral part of operations in many of these sectors.

This Government is conscious of the central role that IP protection plays in further economic development and has therefore focussed on ensuring that Ireland’s Intellectual Property regime compares favourably with best international practice. Late last year, an independent review Committee published a Report entitled “Modernising Copyright” and my Department is currently examining the 60 plus recommendations in this Report with a view to bringing forward proposals for legislative reform in this area later this year.

Information and Communications Technology

Questions (288)

John Deasy

Question:

288. Deputy John Deasy asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the apps his Department or attached agencies have been involved in developing for smartphones and other multimedia devices in the past three years; the cost and the software developer employed in each case. [5462/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

My Department has had two smartphone Apps developed during the period on question, both for internal use. The first is an Android app to support the annual scanning of assets. It was developed by Fujitsu (Ireland) Ltd. at a cost of €3,595. The second was a Blackberry app to allow travelling staff access the Department's internal phone directory using official Blackberry devices. It was developed by System Dynamics as part of a wider package of work. The estimated cost of this piece of the project, based on the number of days' development, testing and deployment required is €6,088. The development of apps by my Department’s Agencies would be a day to day matter for those Agencies. However, I am asking those Agencies to provide me with the information requested and will forward this to the Deputy on receipt.

Job Creation Data

Questions (289)

Damien English

Question:

289. Deputy Damien English asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the total number of jobs created and lost in 2013 by companies supported by the IDA, Enterprise Ireland and other agencies under the aegis of his Department in County Meath; if he will provide the information in tabular form for each agency; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5480/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

The Forfás Annual Employment Survey reports on job gains and losses in companies that are supported by the industrial development agencies. Analysis by IDA on the preliminary results released in respect of 2013 show that a total of 68 jobs were created in IDA supported companies in County Meath while 58 jobs were lost. In addition, there are 14 IDA supported companies in County Meath employing 1,200 people.

I am informed by Enterprise Ireland that they are currently not in a position to provide employment details for 2013. While the preliminary results for 2013 have been released, further analysis on the data is being undertaken on a county by county basis. It is intended that this material will be available by the end of February. However, in their End of Year Statement published on Monday 13 January 2014, Enterprise Ireland reported that 18,033 new jobs were created nationally in Enterprise Ireland supported companies in 2013.

Similarly, statistics in relation to job gains and losses on a county by county basis in 2013 in the companies that are supported by the County and City Enterprise Boards County are currently being compiled as part of the CEB Annual Employment Survey of client companies. It is expected that the information will be available later this quarter.

IDA Site Visits

Questions (290)

Jack Wall

Question:

290. Deputy Jack Wall asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation further to Parliamentary Question No. 297 of 15 January 2014, the actual towns visited during each itinerary visit; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5552/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

IDA sponsored itinerary visits by potential investors include visits to multiple locations where there are greenfield or current turn-key property solutions for them to consider. The majority of these solutions with the exception of Dublin and to a lesser extent Cork, are usually situated on the outskirts of towns and cities. For reasons of client confidentiality and commercial sensitivity, such as the potential impact on any future property transactions that may arise from a possible investment, it is prudent to provide details of such visits on a county by county basis only.

State Bodies

Questions (291, 292)

Terence Flanagan

Question:

291. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation if an assessment has been made of the amount of money that will be saved as a result of the dissolution of Forfás; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5553/14]

View answer

Terence Flanagan

Question:

292. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the amount that was spent on consultants' fees when assessing plans for the dissolution of Forfás; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5554/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 291 and 292 together.

As part of the Public Service Reform Plan, I undertook to review how the functions currently carried out by Forfás might be integrated with the resources of my Department in order to further enhance the formulation and implementation of national enterprise policy. Following consideration of the matter and engagement with the Board of Forfás, I decided, in May 2012, to proceed with the proposed integration.

This move forms part of a broader reform programme which I have been progressing across the Department and its Agencies, which includes:

- the merger of the National Consumer Agency and the Competition Authority;

- the reform of the 5 workplace relations bodies into two organisations;

- restructuring the enterprise support model for micro and small businesses, including the dissolution of the 35 CEBs and the creation of the new Local Enterprise Offices;

- restructuring transport and enterprise development bodies in the Shannon region.

The rationale for integrating Forfás into the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation is to strengthen my Department’s capacity to develop and implement enterprise policy. The integration will, facilitate improvements in the use of existing resources against the backdrop of the moratorium on Public Sector recruitment. Some savings may arise when the integration process is complete, especially in the Corporate Services area. However, it is not possible to quantify these potential savings at this stage of the project.

I did not consider it necessary to engage external consultants to assist in the assessment of plans to integrate Forfás into the Department, or in the integration project itself, and accordingly no such related costs arose. The project has been managed by an Implementation Team chaired by my Department’s Secretary General and comprising representatives from Forfás, my own Department and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.

State Bodies

Questions (293)

Terence Flanagan

Question:

293. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the steps that will be taken to safeguard the independent reporting process of Forfás when it moves to his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5555/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

Forfás has been of enormous value to my Department and to the Government in the development of appropriate policy responses to the many enterprise and jobs-related challenges that have confronted the country, particularly throughout the economic crisis of the last few years. The overarching objective of integrating Forfás into my Department is to strengthen our capacity to develop and implement enterprise policy. Integrating Forfás in to the Department will streamline the process between policy development and its implementation, serving to strengthen my Department's role in driving economic recovery.

Forfás's policy and research functions will form the core of a new Strategic Policy Division in my Department. My objective is to maintain, within the Strategic Policy Division, the independent research and analysis that is associated with Forfás. There are precedents in the Civil Service for this type of independent analysis being conducted within a Department. Examples include the Structural Funds Evaluation Units which, in the 1990s, were established in the lead Departments responsible for the European Social Fund, the European Regional Development Fund and the European Agricultural funds. Although primarily staffed by civil servants, these units independently evaluated programmes and published their reports.

More recently, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform’s Central Expenditure Evaluation Unit has produced a number of policy analysis papers, published on the stated understanding that they “do not necessarily represent the views of either the Minister or the Department of Public Expenditure & Reform.” I am confident, therefore, that the independent nature of Forfás’s analysis and reports will be maintained within my Department.

The capacity of Forfás to support independent advice and analysis will also be maintained through its support for the National Competitiveness Council (NCC), and the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs (EGFSN). The role of the NCC in the context of the Forfás integration has been carefully considered. Revised terms of reference have been approved for the NCC, which will give it greater flexibility to prepare and publish reports on issues it considers important, thereby copper-fastening its independence.

The EGFSN, which reports jointly to me and the Minister for Education and Skills, will continue to prepare independent policy papers on skills needs and labour market issues that impact on Ireland's enterprise and employment growth. As with the NCC, the EGFSN will be serviced by the Strategic Policy Division.

Pension Provisions

Question No. 295 answered with Question No. 270.

Questions (294)

Terence Flanagan

Question:

294. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the position regarding pension payments at Forfás (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5557/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

Under the Industrial Development Acts 1993, 1998 and 2003, Forfás is the legal employer of all staff in Forfás, Enterprise Ireland, IDA Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland and a number of staff in the National Standards Authority of Ireland. Forfás has responsibility for managing pension arrangements of these staff and for paying the pensions of retired staff of those agencies. Forfás is also responsible for a number of legacy pension schemes for staff of agencies that have now been dissolved, including An Bord Tráchtála, the former Industrial Development Authority, the Institute for Industrial Research and Standards, the National Board for Science and Technology, and Eolas.

Forfás administers pensions for 1,248 existing pensioners as well as some 430 former employees with deferred pension benefits. Due to the large numbers involved, and for reasons of confidentiality, it is not possible to provide the Deputy with a breakdown of payments made to each person. In 2012, Forfás received total Exchequer funding of €51.4 million, of which €40.2 million was to cover Forfás pension commitments broken. This included provision of €10.4 million for Lump Sum gratuities.

In 2013, Forfás’s Exchequer allocation was €40.076 million, of which €34.023 million was to fund their pension obligations for the year, including €3.669 million for gratuities. The figure for gratuities in 2012 was significantly higher than normal due to the retirement of a large number of staff across the enterprise agencies before the cuts to pension entitlements, as provided for in the Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Acts, took effect.

It is important to point out that the allocation to Forfás to fund the pension entitlements of former agency staff is completely separate to funding made available to meet the agency’s policy and research activities. Forfás’s allocation for these activities in 2013 was just over €6 million.

Question No. 295 answered with Question No. 270.

Job Creation Data

Questions (296)

Tom Fleming

Question:

296. Deputy Tom Fleming asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation the number of high-potential start-up jobs that have been created by Enterprise Ireland in County Kerry since the inception of the HPSU concept in 1989; the number of companies that benefited; the amount of investment in each company; the current statistics regarding jobs per company in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5688/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Jobs)

Enterprise Ireland offers a range of financial and non-financial supports to assist clients through all stages of the business development cycle. Enterprise Ireland’s offers in the Start-Up space are aimed at High Potential Start-Up (HPSUs). HPSU companies are defined as start-up ventures that are:

- Introducing a new or innovative product or service to international markets;

- Involved in manufacturing or internationally traded services;

- Capable of creating 10 jobs in Ireland and realising €1 million in sales within three to four years of starting up;

- Led by an experienced management team;

- Headquartered and controlled in Ireland;

- Less than six years old.

Enterprise Ireland has supported thirteen Kerry based high potential start-ups since the programme first began in 1989. To date, these companies have received funding of €5,197,639 under the HPSU programme. Of the 13 Kerry based HPSUs supported by Enterprise Ireland, 2013 Forfás Employment data is available for 69% (9). These companies employed a total of 93 people (full-time & part-time) as of October 2013. The 2013 data reflects the most recent position of those HPSUs supported since 1989.

For reasons of commercial sensitivity Enterprise Ireland cannot release company specific data regarding jobs and investments. It should be noted that Shannon Development was the enterprise development agency responsible for supporting companies in North Kerry until January 2007.

Back to Education Allowance Eligibility

Questions (297)

Patrick Nulty

Question:

297. Deputy Patrick Nulty asked the Minister for Social Protection if mature students who are on back to education allowance are eligible for any other additional funding or supports to participate in the Erasmus exchange programme as part of their degree course; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5150/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

The back to education allowance (BTEA) scheme is a second chance education opportunities scheme designed to remove the barriers to participation in second and third level education by enabling eligible people on certain social welfare payments to continue to receive a payment while pursuing an approved full-time education course that leads to a higher qualification than that already held. The BTEA scheme does not attract any other additional funding or supports from my Department for a student participating in an Erasmus programme.

State Bodies

Questions (298, 299, 300)

Patrick O'Donovan

Question:

298. Deputy Patrick O'Donovan asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will provide details of personnel who moved from FÁS to her Department to establish Intreo offices; the number of persons that moved in tabular form by county and their grade; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5324/14]

View answer

Patrick O'Donovan

Question:

299. Deputy Patrick O'Donovan asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will provide details of the salary comparison templates that were used in the transfer of staff from FÁS to her Department in order to establish Intreo offices; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5325/14]

View answer

Patrick O'Donovan

Question:

300. Deputy Patrick O'Donovan asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will provide details of the various grades and salary scales that existed in FÁS prior to personnel moving to her Department to establish Intreo offices; the grades and salary scales that existed in her Department prior to the movement of FÁS personnel; the grades and salary scales that now exist; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5326/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 298 to 300, inclusive, together.

Staff from the Employment Supports and Community Services areas of FÁS were integrated with the Department of Social Protection on foot of a Government decision from 1 January 2012. The staff were designated at the equivalent civil service grade by reference to the rate of salary; there were no changes in those salary rates prior to or post the transfer. A breakdown showing the civil service grades to which the former FÁS staff were assigned within my Department is shown in the following table; details of the specific grade titles used in FÁS and a further breakdown by county is not readily available.

Former FÁS staff who transferred to the Department of Social Protection by grade

Civil Service Grade

Posts

People

Assistant Secretary

1.00

1.00

Principal Officer

8.00

8.00

Assistant Principal

55.80

56.00

Higher Executive Officer

368.46

387.00

Executive Officer

16.70

18.00

Staff Officer

6.22

7.00

Clerical Officer

259.34

287.00

Service Officer

2.00

2.00

Cleaner

1.27

5.00

Grand Total

718.79

771.00

Domiciliary Care Allowance Appeals

Questions (301)

Jack Wall

Question:

301. Deputy Jack Wall asked the Minister for Social Protection the position regarding a domiciliary care allowance appeal in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kildare; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4849/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

The Social Welfare Appeals Office has advised me that an appeal by the person concerned was registered in that office on 6 November 2013. It is a statutory requirement of the appeals process that the relevant Departmental papers and comments by the Deciding Officer on the grounds of appeal be sought. When these papers have been received from the Department, the case in question will be referred to an Appeals Officer who will make a summary decision on the appeal based on the documentary evidence presented or, if required, hold an oral appeal hearing.

The Social Welfare Appeals Office functions independently of the Minister for Social Protection and of the Department and is responsible for determining appeals against decisions in relation to social welfare entitlements.

National Internship Scheme Data

Questions (302, 341, 355, 360)

John Lyons

Question:

302. Deputy John Lyons asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of JobBridge participants per economic sector based on Nace Rev. 2 codes; and if data are available on the education profile of JobBridge participants per economic sector. [4850/14]

View answer

Paudie Coffey

Question:

341. Deputy Paudie Coffey asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of persons who participated on the JobBridge scheme in Waterford in the years 2011, 2012 and 2013; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5372/14]

View answer

Gerry Adams

Question:

355. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will provide a breakdown of placements within counties Louth and Meath under the JobBridge scheme from the inception of the scheme; if she will provide figures pertaining to offers of employment made to participants upon completion of this scheme; if she will provide as a list of employers and or companies in the scheme; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5527/14]

View answer

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

360. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Social Protection further to Parliamentary Question No. 114 of 28 January 2014, if a person on Youthreach can take up a JobBridge internship without fully completing the Youthreach programme; and if they can move seamlessly between both programmes or if they have to go on the live register first; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [5635/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 302, 341, 355 and 360 together.

The Department does not maintain statistics on JobBridge internships by Nace Rev. 2 codes or on the education profile of interns by economic sector. 125, 341 and 357 internships started in Waterford City and County in the years 2011, 2012 and 2013 respectively. 622 and 573 internships started in Counties Louth and Meath respectively since the commencement of the scheme in July 2011. The independent evaluation of JobBridge found that 61.4% of all interns moved into employment after 5 months or more of finishing their internship. The Department does not disclose the names of host organisations participating in the scheme.

In common with other training programmes, a potential JobBridge intern must complete their Youthreach programme in order for time spent on the course to count towards eligibility for JobBridge and they must have a live qualifying claim in order to commence a JobBridge internship. This means that they must register a claim for, and be approved to receive, a jobseeker payment.

Social Welfare Schemes

Questions (303)

John Lyons

Question:

303. Deputy John Lyons asked the Minister for Social Protection if staff are being assigned specifically to meet the demands of employers seeking information on JobsPlus and other schemes during the development of Intreo offices; if there is a specific contact point for employers at each Intreo office; and if sufficient information and printed material are available at each office for employers. [4854/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

A dedicated Employer Engagement Unit was established in 2012 to coordinate the Department’s engagement with employers. The unit includes staff dealing with JobBridge, the European Job Mobility Portal (EURES), and the National Contact Centre, which hosts the Jobs Ireland website, as well as staff providing policy and coordination support to employer engagement across the country. There are over 35 staff working in the Employer Engagement Unit.

In addition there are approximately 400 staff in the Department’s regional divisions who work on employment services with both employers and jobseekers. As part of this structure there are 13 dedicated officers at senior management level leading the engagement process with employers at a divisional level. My Department has also produced an Employer Pack with information about the range of supports and services provided by the Department at no cost to employers. The Employer Pack is available to download at http://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/Employer-Pack.aspx.

Labour Activation Measures

Questions (304)

Dara Calleary

Question:

304. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will provide on a county basis in tabular form, the number of participants on labour activation schemes during 2012 and 2013; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4863/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

The information requested by the Deputy is collated at county level by my Department annually for inclusion in the Statistical Information on Social Welfare Services report. Work has commenced on the compilation of data for the production of the 2013 report. However, the most recent data available, at present, in respect the number of participants on labour activation schemes at the end of 2012 and 2013 is detailed by each scheme in the attached tabular statement.

County breakdown of activation participants at 31 December 2013

County

Community Employment

Rural Social Scheme

TÚS

Back To Work Allowance Self-employed

Back to Work Allowance Employee

Back to Education Allowance

Partial Capacity Benefit

JobBridge

Short-Term Enterprise Allowance

Part-Time Job Incentive(1)

Carlow

Not yet Collated

18

131

166

0

453

13

91

4

0

Cavan

Not yet Collated

82

120

219

0

301

16

110

11

6

Clare

Not yet Collated

114

166

314

0

441

31

136

12

3

Cork

Not yet Collated

166

832

764

2

2,042

169

532

43

31

Donegal

Not yet Collated

223

391

316

0

1,264

38

235

15

8

Dublin

Not yet Collated

0

1,400

2,537

4

6,350

329

1,604

228

88

Galway

Not yet Collated

269

395

702

1

1,582

52

361

37

19

Kerry

Not yet Collated

271

188

443

0

921

32

197

18

9

Kildare

Not yet Collated

23

252

353

0

926

49

256

19

9

Kilkenny

Not yet Collated

17

128

260

1

423

30

81

8

7

Laois

Not yet Collated

23

104

224

0

389

14

110

3

3

Leitrim

Not yet Collated

96

74

106

0

199

11

47

3

4

Limerick

Not yet Collated

72

297

289

0

1,223

54

323

14

3

Longford

Not yet Collated

51

82

112

0

289

16

59

1

1

Louth

Not yet Collated

11

213

397

0

1,035

43

219

28

9

Mayo

Not yet Collated

561

236

305

1

728

41

225

12

23

Meath

Not yet Collated

14

239

438

0

378

56

144

6

5

Monaghan

Not yet Collated

40

98

83

0

383

12

126

2

1

Offaly

Not yet Collated

42

164

172

0

391

15

101

14

4

Roscommon

Not yet Collated

147

119

132

0

177

15

55

2

0

Sligo

Not yet Collated

124

108

169

0

509

19

121

8

3

Tipperary

Not yet Collated

64

289

370

1

879

52

257

13

22

Waterford

Not yet Collated

11

295

344

0

972

34

191

9

12

Westmeath

Not yet Collated

39

125

171

0

564

14

147

11

1

Wexford

Not yet Collated

40

325

295

1

743

52

188

12

12

Wicklow

Not yet Collated

19

228

417

0

613

25

142

26

7

Other

Not yet Collated

2

Total

Not yet Collated

2,537

6,999

10,098

11

24,175

1,234

6,058

559

290

County breakdown of activation participants at 31 December 2012

County

Community Employment

Rural Social Scheme

TÚS

Back To Work Allowance Self-employed

Back to Work Allowance Employee

Back to Education Allowance

Partial Capacity Benefit

JobBridge

Short-Term Enterprise Allowance

Part-Time Job Incentive(1)

Carlow

320

18

61

210

0

548

8

Not Collated

12

0

Cavan

216

83

72

216

1

303

11

Not Collated

15

0

Clare

573

115

115

320

0

449

20

Not Collated

12

3

Cork

2,122

170

531

982

4

2,219

101

Not Collated

80

0

Donegal

1,124

228

259

402

0

1,363

19

Not Collated

19

1

Dublin

5,802

0

993

2,584

6

6,337

190

Not Collated

389

85

Galway

1,513

281

227

747

2

1,585

29

Not Collated

45

11

Kerry

973

280

106

416

1

924

21

Not Collated

30

25

Kildare

562

23

165

398

1

844

35

Not Collated

43

6

Kilkenny

389

18

91

279

1

418

22

Not Collated

15

5

Laois

296

20

79

207

0

378

8

Not Collated

14

0

Leitrim

182

98

57

108

0

206

6

Not Collated

22

4

Limerick

1,160

76

191

428

1

1,260

36

Not Collated

44

3

Longford

291

53

61

121

0

309

9

Not Collated

3

0

Louth

776

11

174

392

0

998

18

Not Collated

40

3

Mayo

767

566

183

292

0

890

31

Not Collated

32

21

Meath

357

14

102

419

0

370

27

Not Collated

21

3

Monaghan

340

42

66

97

0

427

1

Not Collated

6

0

Offaly

357

45

121

198

0

355

10

Not Collated

23

0

Roscommon

310

149

78

128

0

202

12

Not Collated

10

0

Sligo

399

129

82

184

0

576

12

Not Collated

22

2

Tipperary

905

65

158

351

0

919

26

Not Collated

28

14

Waterford

716

12

170

378

0

978

20

Not Collated

22

12

Westmeath

544

36

99

182

0

586

10

Not Collated

24

1

Wexford

859

41

179

319

1

881

31

Not Collated

20

11

Wicklow

592

18

110

452

0

708

19

Not Collated

61

5

Other

1

Not Collated

Total

22,445

2,591

4,530

10,810

18

25,033

733

Not Collated

1,052

215

Community Welfare Services

Questions (305, 306)

Willie O'Dea

Question:

305. Deputy Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection if she will provide, in tabular form, the number of community welfare service clinics that have closed in 2013 or will be closed in 2014 on a county basis; the number of community welfare service clinics that existed in January 2013 on a county basis; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4877/14]

View answer

Willie O'Dea

Question:

306. Deputy Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection the policy reasons for the closure of community welfare service clinics in rural Ireland; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4878/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 305 and 306 together.

A key objective of the transfer of the Community Welfare Service (CWS) from the Health Service Executive to the Department on 1 October 2011 was to provide a streamlined and consistent service to the customer. As part of this process and to support the Department’s activation commitments under the Pathways to Work Programme and the development of Intreo services nationally, it has been necessary to review the administration of all its services across its remit including the CWS. The Pathways to Work Programme represents a significant reform in the social welfare system and highlighted the need for the Department to focus its resources on the provision of opportunities, supports and assistance to unemployed people. The Department is intensifying its level of engagement with the unemployed, in particular, those who are, or become, long-term unemployed. The new Intreo service offers practical, tailored employment services and supports for jobseekers, a model which is currently being rolled out across the country.

Overall, this is resulting in a rebalancing of resources across the Department’s range of activities including the relocation of some staff to main centres, primarily Intreo offices, which will provide a full range of services, including the CWS and these will, in general, be available in one location. Since October 2011 to date, some 370 clinics have been closed. A tabular statement follows, showing the number of CWS clinics that were closed in 2013 and in January 2014 on a county basis. Approximately 750 clinics existed in January 2013, a county breakdown of these is not available.

Where the community welfare service has been re-structured, alternative arrangements have been put in place to ensure that customers are provided with on-going access to the supports provided by the service. In general, this means that the frequency of available public clinics has increased. Improved phone services have been put in place, allowing in many cases, for customer queries to be processed without having to attend a clinic on a face to face basis. If a person is unable to travel to a clinic, for example due to illness, alternative arrangements are in place including arranging a visit to the client’s home if necessary.

People claiming supports under the supplementary welfare allowance scheme generally only interact with the Department on an occasional basis, for example, when seeking an exceptional needs payment or in claiming additional supports such as rent supplement, which are usually reviewed once to twice yearly.

The staffing needs for all areas within the Department are continuously reviewed and will continue to be examined during 2014, to ensure that the best use is made of all available resources with a view to providing an efficient service to those who rely on the schemes operated by the Department and that the services provided are reconstituted, where necessary, to meet the changing needs of Irish society.

Tabular Statement - CWS Clinics 2013 and 2014

County

Clinics Closed 2013

Clinics Closed 2014*

Carlow

7

0

Cavan

0

0

Clare

0

0

Cork

35

2

Donegal

15

0

Dublin

25

0

Galway

33

0

Kerry

18

0

Kildare

2

5

Kilkenny

6

10

Laois

4

0

Leitrim

7

0

Limerick

0

8

Longford

3

0

Louth

0

0

Mayo

0

0

Meath

0

0

Monaghan

1

0

Offaly

7

0

Roscommon

5

0

Sligo

10

0

Tipperary

24

0

Waterford

6

0

Westmeath

3

0

Wexford

0

0

Wicklow

13

0

Total

224

25

(*as of 30/01/2014)

Social Welfare Eligibility

Questions (307)

Willie O'Dea

Question:

307. Deputy Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection the reason a person (details supplied) in County Limerick has not received payment from her Department in view of the fact that they are casually employed and submitting dockets to the local office; when the payment will issue; the amount of same; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4884/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

Applicants for a range of social assistance payments must satisfy the condition of being habitually resident in Ireland. The person concerned applied for jobseeker’s allowance and completed the habitual residency condition form. The application was disallowed by a deciding officer on the grounds that the person does not satisfy this condition. It is open for them to appeal this decision to the Social Welfare Appeals Office by calling to the Limerick Intreo Office to complete the necessary forms.

Social Welfare Appeals

Questions (308)

John McGuinness

Question:

308. Deputy John McGuinness asked the Minister for Social Protection if an oral hearing will be arranged in the case of a person (details supplied) in County Kilkenny. [4938/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Social)

I am advised by the Social Welfare Appeals Office that an Appeals Officer, having fully considered all of the available evidence, disallowed the appeal of the person concerned by way of a summary decision. Under Social Welfare legislation, the decision of the Appeals Officer is final and conclusive and may only be reviewed by the Appeals Officer in the light of new evidence or new facts.

I understand that the person concerned submitted additional evidence and that the Department have been requested to return the file to the Social Welfare Appeals Office. On receipt of the file, the Appeals Officer will review the case on a summary basis taking into account the documentary evidence presented or, if required, hold an oral hearing. The Appeals Officer will be advised of your request for an oral hearing. The person concerned will be contacted when the review of his appeal has been finalised.

The Social Welfare Appeals Office functions independently of the Minister for Social Protection and of the Department and is responsible for determining appeals against decisions on social welfare entitlements.