Parking Regulations

Questions (671)

Brendan Griffin

Question:

671. Deputy Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport his plans to regulate the clamping industry; if he plans to discourage clamping in tourism towns; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21079/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The Programme for Government contains a commitment “to legislate to regulate the vehicle clamping industry”. Therefore, I asked the then Joint Committee on Environment, Transport, Culture and Gaeltacht to provide views on the initial draft of the legislation. The Committee carried out a number of hearings on the matter and published detailed recommendations on the issues that should be included. In March 2013, the Government approved the drafting of a Regulation of Vehicle Immobilisation Bill. The Bill is currently being drafted by the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel and, contingent on Government approval to publish the Bill,  I hope to introduce it in the Oireachtas in the coming months. In relation to the use of clamping in tourist towns, the choice of parking control measures is at the discretion of the relevant local authority and it would be inappropriate to legislate for the manner in which such discretion might be exercised.

Public Transport

Questions (672)

Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin

Question:

672. Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the process that exists to get bus shelters erected; the number of bus shelters in County Cavan; if he will consider the erection of more bus shelters; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21102/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The issue of bus stop improvement is a matter for the National Transport Authority (NTA) in conjunction with the relevant transport provider and I have referred the Deputy's question to the NTA for direct reply.  Please advise my private office if you do not receive a reply within ten working days.

Sports Capital Programme Applications

Questions (673)

Aengus Ó Snodaigh

Question:

673. Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will confirm that the 2007 sports capital grant application from De La Salle GAA Club, Ballyfermot, Dublin 10, for refurbishment of dressing rooms is still valid and when they will be in a position to draw down the funding; and if there is a problem with the drawing down of the funding, if he will outline if same can be overcome to ensure this funding will be made available. [21108/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

I can confirm that the grant allocated under the 2007 Sports Capital Programme to De La Salle GAA, Ballyfermot is still available for drawdown. The Department is awaiting outstanding documentation from both South Dublin County Council and the club.

Sports Capital Programme Applications

Questions (674)

Andrew Doyle

Question:

674. Deputy Andrew Doyle asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport when he expects an announcement to be made regarding the allocation of funding for local organisations as part of the sports capital programme 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21162/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

I hope to announce allocations under the 2014 round of the Sports Capital Programme later this year.

Rail Passengers Data

Questions (675)

Andrew Doyle

Question:

675. Deputy Andrew Doyle asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will ask the operators of the LUAS and-or the National Transport Authority to provide the number of fines issued on a year-by-year basis from 2007 to date in 2014; the number that were paid every year, and the number that remained outstanding each year; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21163/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

 The issue raised is a matter for the Railway Procurement Agency (RPA) and I have forwarded the Deputy's question to the RPA for direct reply.  Please advise my private office if you do not receive a reply within ten working days.

Tourism Promotion

Questions (676, 677)

Ciara Conway

Question:

676. Deputy Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if his attention has been drawn to the Fáilte Ireland map (details supplied); if he will explain the reason this map has included Tramore, County Waterford, but leaves out Waterford city which has a much larger population; if he is satisfied with this measure in view of the significant spending on tourism projects in Waterford city not least by his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21224/14]

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Ciara Conway

Question:

677. Deputy Ciara Conway asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if his attention has been drawn to a Fáilte Ireland map (details supplied); if he will provide details on the policy decision to include Tramore but to exclude Waterford city; the criteria used; if he will provide a detailed breakdown on when this map was published; the number of copies and where produced; where it is being distributed globally; to whom and by what means; if he will commit to amending this map to include Waterford city and the date on which he will do so; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21225/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 676 and 677 together.

I am aware of the issue raised by the Deputy but I have no direct role in this matter. These are decisions for Tourism Ireland Limited as the body responsible for promoting the island of Ireland as a visitor destination overseas and are not subject to my approval. I have referred the Deputy's Questions to Tourism Ireland for direct reply. Please advise my private office if you do not receive a reply within ten working days.

Departmental Communications

Questions (678)

Stephen Donnelly

Question:

678. Deputy Stephen S. Donnelly asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if any telephone calls in or out of his Department are being, or ever have been recorded, and if so, if he will provide details of the systems used to record and store such calls, the cost to his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21242/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

The Irish Coast Guard is the only area in my Department which records telephone calls. All radio and telephone calls at the three Marine Rescue Coordination Centres located at Dublin, Malin and Valentia  are recorded in accordance with a long standing practice.  The type of recording equipment used is manufactured by NICE.  It was purchased as part of a larger service wide technology upgrade.  The total once-off cost of the recording system was €267,000 in respect of the three rescue centres. As the system is maintained in house by the Engineering Branch of the Coast Guard as part of the ongoing maintenance programme, no separate maintenance costs are incurred.

Taxi Regulations

Questions (679, 680)

Michael McCarthy

Question:

679. Deputy Michael McCarthy asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will outline changes to regulations regarding the transfer of taxi licences; the position regarding licensing and the purchase of a wheelchair accessible vehicle; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21328/14]

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Michael McCarthy

Question:

680. Deputy Michael McCarthy asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the grant assistance available for the purchase of wheelchair accessible hackneys; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21329/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 679 and 680 together.

The regulation of the small public service vehicle (SPSV) industry, including issues pertaining to the licensing of wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAVs), is a matter for the National Transport Authority (NTA) under the provisions of the Taxi Regulation Act, 2013. I have referred this aspect of your question to the NTA for direct reply. Please advise my private office if you do not receive a response within 10 working days.

On the issue of transferability of taxi licences, Action 14 of the Taxi Regulation Review Report, 2011, recommended the prohibition on the transferability of small public service vehicle (SPSV) licences with effect from 1st October 2012. The underlying principle for the recommendation was that a licence should determine a person's suitability to carry out a function and it should have no monetary value or be traded on the open market. The measure was provided for in Section 14(1) of the Taxi Regulation Act, 2013 which was commenced with effect from the 6th April 2014.

Sports Capital Programme Applications

Questions (681, 682, 683, 687)

Anthony Lawlor

Question:

681. Deputy Anthony Lawlor asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport when he will announce funding under the 2014 sports capital programme; and the position regarding funding in respect of a club (details supplied) in County Kildare. [21408/14]

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Anthony Lawlor

Question:

682. Deputy Anthony Lawlor asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport when he will announce funding under the 2014 sports capital programme; and the position regarding funding in respect of a club (details supplied) in County Kildare. [21409/14]

View answer

Anthony Lawlor

Question:

683. Deputy Anthony Lawlor asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport when he will announce funding under the 2014 sports capital programme; and the position regrading funding in respect of a club (details supplied) in County Kildare. [21410/14]

View answer

Seamus Kirk

Question:

687. Deputy Seamus Kirk asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the position regarding the assessment of the sports capital grant in respect of a club (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21513/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 681 to 683, inclusive, and 687 together.

I can confirm that an application has been received from the organisation referred to by the Deputy and the support for the project is noted. I hope to announce allocations later this year.

Sports Capital Programme Application Numbers

Questions (684)

Joe Carey

Question:

684. Deputy Joe Carey asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of applications received on a per county basis in respect of the sports capital programme 2014; when is it expected that a decision will be made with regard to this scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21419/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The information sought by the Deputy is set out in the following table.  A full list of applications received for each county is available on the Department's website www.dttas.ie.

I hope to announce allocations later this year.

County

Applications

Carlow

33

Cavan

31

Clare

61

Cork

229

Donegal

96

Dublin

298

Galway

145

Kerry

82

Kildare

76

Kilkenny

61

Laois

43

Leitrim

23

Limerick

76

Longford

23

Louth

66

Mayo

85

Meath

79

Monaghan

35

Offaly

49

Roscommon

45

Sligo

44

Tipperary

106

Waterford

57

Westmeath

48

Wexford

82

Wicklow

63

Total

2036

Driver Licences

Questions (685)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

685. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the position regarding a licence for a trailer in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Kerry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21462/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The operation of the National Driver Licensing Service is the statutory responsibility of the Road Safety Authority, and I have no power to intervene in individual cases.  I have therefore referred the question to the Authority for direct reply.  I would ask the Deputy to contact my office if a response has not been received within ten days.

Driver Licences

Question No. 687 answered with Question No. 681.

Questions (686)

Seamus Kirk

Question:

686. Deputy Seamus Kirk asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will examine the complaint regarding the issuing of driving licences (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21512/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The operation of the National Driver Licensing Service is the statutory responsibility of the Road Safety Authority, and I have no power to intervene in individual cases.  I have therefore referred the question to the Authority for Direct reply.  I would ask the Deputy to contact my office if a response has not been received within ten days.

Question No. 687 answered with Question No. 681.

Sports Organisations

Questions (688)

Timmy Dooley

Question:

688. Deputy Timmy Dooley asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the level of support provided by the Government to the Confederation of Golf in Ireland; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21534/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The Irish Sports Council, which is funded by my Department, is the statutory body with responsibility for the promotion, development and co-ordination of sport.  This includes the allocation of funding to sporting organisations.  As this question is a matter for the Irish Sports Council (ISC), I have referred it to the ISC for direct reply. I would ask the Deputy to inform my office if a reply is not received within 10 days.

Proposed Legislation

Questions (689)

Seán Kyne

Question:

689. Deputy Seán Kyne asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will provide an update on the vehicle immobilisation legislation which will govern the private clamping industry; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21549/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

The Programme for Government contains a commitment “to legislate to regulate the vehicle clamping industry”. Therefore, I asked the then Joint Committee on Environment, Transport, Culture and Gaeltacht to provide views on the initial draft of the legislation. The Committee carried out a number of hearings on the matter and published detailed recommendations on the issues that should be included. In March 2013, the Government approved the drafting of a Regulation of Vehicle Immobilisation Bill. The Bill is currently being drafted by the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel and, contingent on Government approval to publish the Bill,  I hope to introduce it in the Oireachtas in the coming months.

Parking Provision

Questions (690)

Kevin Humphreys

Question:

690. Deputy Kevin Humphreys asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport his plans to hold a public consultation on allowing a local authority to provide for designated car parking places in streets that are congested; if he has held meetings on this with respect to a road (details supplied); the outcome of same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21586/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Transport)

Traffic management and the designation of individual parking spaces in our cities and towns is a matter for the local authority concerned and I have no function in the matter. 

The Deputy may be referring to the issue of parking on public footpaths.  Such a departure from current practice raises issues around the  safety of pedestrians and the need to segregate vulnerable road users from passing or parking traffic on the roadway. Additionally footpaths are not constructed to the same specifications as roads and are not built to bear the weight of vehicles.

I accept that there are also arguments which can be put on the opposite side, particularly in the case of very narrow streets where on-street parking would block traffic flow.

As I have indicated recently, I am willing to consider this issue further. The matter would need to be examined in some detail in consultation with key stakeholders and interested parties before any decision could be made with regard to the possibility of a pilot scheme.  I propose to engage with the  National Transport Authority which is the appropriate body to conduct such an examination.

Departmental Agencies

Questions (691)

Seán Fleming

Question:

691. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the number of State agencies and public bodies that have been merged or abolished in each year since 2011, under the remit of his Department; the annual savings associated with each body; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21800/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

Since my appointment as Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, I have created no agencies,  However a number have been merged or abolished.

Dundalk Port Company was merged with Dublin Port Company on 12 July 2011 , while Tralee and Fenit Harbour Commissioners transferred to the control of Kerry County Council on 1 October 2011.

In 2012 Dublin Tourism merged with its parent body Fáilte Ireland on 1 January, while both Baltimore and Skibbereen Harbour Commissioners and Kinsale Harbour Commissioners also transferred to the control of Cork County Council on 1 January 2012, along with Arklow Harbour Commissioners which transferred to the control of Wicklow County Council. Shannon Airport separated from the Dublin Airport Authority on 31st December 2012 to merge with a restructured Shannon Development to form a new integrated Shannon entity in public ownership.

Coaching Ireland merged into the Irish Sports Council on 1 January 2013.  The final Harbour Commission, Bantry Bay merged with the Port of Cork Company on 1 January 2014. Plans are in train for the merger of Irish Sports Council and the National Sports Campus Development Authority and for the merger of the Railway Procurement Agency and the National Roads Authority.  The development of the legislation to give effect to these is at an advanced stage.

It is not possible to quantify the annual savings from rationalisation until the detailed arrangements in respect of each implementation have been bedded in and assessed by the agencies in question.

Departmental Staff Data

Questions (692)

Seán Fleming

Question:

692. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the current average age of full-time staff in his Department; the way this compares with the average age of public servants in each year from 2010 to 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21852/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

The current average age of staff in my Department is 48, a small increase from the average age in 2010 which was of 46.  This compares to the average age of civil servants in the relevant years which is 47.

Ministerial Travel

Questions (693)

Terence Flanagan

Question:

693. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will provide details of all official foreign trips he and Ministers of State in his Department intend to take between now and the end of 2014; if he will detail whom they will be meeting with on these trips; the purpose of the trips; the duration of the trips; if there are plans to use all of these trips to promote Ireland as a good place for doing business and as a destination for foreign direct investment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21864/14]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

Both Minister Ring and I regularly attend European Council meetings relating to our various responsibilities. Currently I expect to attend the European Transport Council meeting on the 5th June.  The date of the next European Sports Council meeting is yet to confirmed.  In relation to other travel, I intend to travel to Canada on the 17th May to attend the WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) Foundation Board meeting. I will be returning the following day.  I am a member of the WADA Foundation Board and I am attending because of our strong commitments to doping free sport. Due to the short duration of the visit I will not be in a position to promote Ireland outside of the sporting context.

Neither Minister Ring nor I currently have further definitive foreign travel plans for this year. However as a matter of course given our tourism responsibilities, the promotion of Ireland as a place to visit is often the key purpose of our overseas visits. Incoming tourism is an important source of export revenues and employment, complementing other sectors.

Minister Kelly's current travel plans for 2014 include travel to Brussels from the 1st - 3rd June 2014 to lead a delegation at a presentational meeting with ERTICO in relation to ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems) Ireland's bid to host the 2018 ITS World Congress in Dublin. Minister Kelly will also attend the 10th ITS European Congress in Helsinki between 16th & 18th June 2014. The purpose of the trip is to assist with the promotion of Irish firms involved in Intelligent Transport System technologies. The Minister will be promoting Ireland as a place to do business similar to his commitments made during the 9th ITS European Congress which was held in Dublin in June 2013. 

Travel plans for Ministers are open to change and further foreign travel may arise over the remainder of the year.