Severe Weather Events Response

Questions (98)

Willie O'Dea

Question:

98. Deputy Willie O'Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection if it is proposed to pay compensation to the victims of the recent floods in Limerick city; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [23841/14]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government is the lead Department for severe weather emergencies and the Office of Public Works has responsibility for capital flood relief activities.

However, the Department of Social Protection has an important role to play in assisting households in the immediate aftermath of emergency events such as the severe weather conditions earlier this year under the humanitarian assistance scheme. The scheme, which is means tested, is available to assist people whose homes are damaged by flooding and who are not in a position to meet costs for essential needs, household items and in some instances structural repair. Levels of payment under the scheme depend on the relative severity of damage experienced and the household’s ability to meet these costs ensuring that the funding is appropriately targeted. Compensation payments per se are not covered by the scheme. Humanitarian assistance also does not cover risks that are covered by insurance policies or cover business or commercial losses.

As of 26 May 2014, some €430,000 has been paid this year in the Limerick area in respect of over 530 claims under the humanitarian assistance scheme. Any person who is experiencing hardship as a result of the weather events earlier this year should contact the Department’s local representative administering the Supplementary Welfare Allowance scheme who may be able to offer assistance.

Carer's Allowance Appeals

Questions Nos. 100 and 101 withdrawn.

Questions (99)

Michelle Mulherin

Question:

99. Deputy Michelle Mulherin asked the Minister for Social Protection the position regarding an appeal for carer's allowance in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Mayo; if same will be expedited due to the hardship the delay is causing the family; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [23853/14]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Social Welfare Appeals Office has advised me that an appeal by the person concerned was referred to an Appeals Officer on 30 May 2014, who will make a summary decision on the appeal based on the documentary evidence presented or, if required, hold an oral hearing.

If the means of the person concerned are insufficient to meet her needs she should contact her Community Welfare Officer regarding her possible entitlement to supplementary welfare allowance.

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.

Questions Nos. 100 and 101 withdrawn.

Rent Supplement Scheme Data

Questions (102)

Arthur Spring

Question:

102. Deputy Arthur Spring asked the Minister for Social Protection the monthly percentage in variation, not amount, from the monthly mean of rental income supplement reviews issued in the preceding 12 months for which the relevant data is available. [23876/14]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The purpose of the rent supplement scheme is to provide short-term income support to assist with reasonable accommodation costs of eligible people living in private rented accommodation who are unable to provide for their accommodation costs from their own resources. The overall aim is to provide short term assistance, and not to act as an alternative to the other social housing schemes operated by the Exchequer. There are currently approximately 76,000 rent supplement recipients for which the Government has provided over €344 million for 2014.

Statistics are not maintained regarding the number of rent supplement reviews undertaken or their outcome.

Employment Support Services

Questions (103)

Michael McGrath

Question:

103. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Social Protection the locations at which the Intreo integrated jobseeker service is currently available; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [23933/14]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The delivery of the Intreo service comprises a number of elements including the integration of the various welfare decision making processes to speed up decision making and minimise recourse to supplementary welfare payments; the introduction of a profiling process to capture the unique characteristics and service requirements of each jobseeker; the implementation of a systematic group activation engagement and one to one process based on clients’ profiles and the delivery of a ‘one-stop-shop’ service from an integrated office location.

The first three elements are being rolled out and are already in place in nearly all offices.

The delivery of over 60 One-Stop-Shop Intreo Offices is a major property project for the Office of Public Works which is responsible for the provision of the Department’s property requirements, including refurbishment and fit out works.

The Intreo Project requires the acquisition and development of some new properties and the re-modelling and refurbishment of others. All of this also entails the re-accommodation of staff including the transfer and set-up of IT, furniture and other utilities across multiple locations.

Notwithstanding the complexity of such a large property programme, the Intreo service is fully operational in forty four offices and the Department is working with the OPW towards a target of completing the roll out of the Intreo service to all local offices by the end of 2014.

The full list of Department offices, including the 44 Intreo Centres is available at http://www.welfare.ie/en/Pages/List-of-Social-Welfare-Local-and-Branch-Offices-by-County.aspx . The 44 Intreo Centres are as follows:

INTREO CENTRES

Intreo Centre Achill

Intreo Centre Arklow

Intreo Centre Athlone

Intreo Centre Ballina

Intreo Centre Ballyfermot

Intreo Centre Ballymun

Intreo Centre Belmullet

Intreo Centre Blanchardstown

Intreo Centre Bray

Intreo Centre Buncrana

Intreo Centre Caherciveen

Intreo Centre Carlow

Intreo Centre Carrick on Shannon

Intreo Centre Castlebar

Intreo Centre Cavan

Intreo Centre Clifden

Intreo Centre Clonmel

Intreo Centre Cobh

Intreo Centre Coolock

Intreo Centre Drogheda

Intreo Centre Dun Laoghaire

Intreo Centre Dundalk

Intreo Centre Dunfanaghy

Intreo Centre Dungloe

Intreo Centre Ennis

Intreo Centre Finglas

Intreo Centre Kenmare

Intreo Centre Kilbarrack

Intreo Centre Kilkenny

Intreo Centre Killarney

Intreo Centre Limerick

Intreo Centre Listowel

Intreo Centre Longford

Intreo Centre Loughrea

Intreo Centre Manorhamilton

Intreo Centre Navan Road

Intreo Centre Newcastlewest

Intreo Centre Parnell Street

Intreo Centre Sligo

Intreo Centre Tallaght

Intreo Centre Tralee

Intreo Centre Tullamore

Intreo Centre Waterford

Intreo Centre Wexford

Arts Funding

Questions (104)

Sandra McLellan

Question:

104. Deputy Sandra McLellan asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the grants programme operated directly by his Department rather than through agencies under its auspices; the organisations and persons that have benefited from these grants; and the criteria used to assess the way in which these grants are utilised by their recipients. [23831/14]

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Written answers (Question to Arts)

As the Deputy will be aware, my Department oversees and has policy responsibility for the conservation, preservation, protection, development and presentation of Ireland’s heritage and culture. My Department also seeks to promote the Irish language, to support the Gaeltacht and to assist the sustainable development of island communities. Information in relation to the functions of my Department, as well as the programmes and schemes operated by it, can be found on my Department's website at www.ahg.gov.ie and in my Department’s Section 15 and Section 16 Reference Manual, published in accordance with the Freedom of Information Legislation and available via the following link http://www.ahg.gov.ie/en/AboutUs/FreedomofInformationFOI/. A list of the grant programmes operated directly by my Department is set out below.

- Scheme to assist Local and Regional Museums

- Cooperation with Northern Ireland Scheme

- Mobility of Collections Scheme

- Culture Night

- Culture Ireland's Funding Schemes

- Built Heritage Capital Programme

- Conservation Works to Heritage Buildings in State Care

- Historic Towns Initiative

- Built Heritage Jobs Leverage Scheme

- Traditional Building Skills Training Scheme

- The Cessation of Turf Cutting Compensation Scheme

- Biodiversity Awareness Grants

- Scéimeanna Tacaíochta Gaeilge (Irish Language Support Schemes)

- Scéim na bhFoghlaimeoirí Gaeilge

- Scéim na gCúntóirí Teanga

- Scéim Seirbhísí Réamhscoile agus Iarscoile sa Ghaeltacht

- Scéim na gCampaí Samhraidh sa Ghaeltacht

- Air Transport, Passenger Ferry & Cargo Services

- Capital Funding for An Gaeltacht and the Islands

- Capital Funding for Cultural Infrastructure and Development

It is not possible to provide the other information requested in respect of this wide range of programmes. However, if the Deputy has a question in relation to a particular grant programme or scheme, I will endeavour to provide the relevant information.

Seirbhísí Eitilte

Questions (105)

Seán Kyne

Question:

105. D'fhiafraigh Deputy Seán Kyne den Aire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta cad í an chéad chéim eile maidir leis an aersheirbhís d'Oileáin Árann tar éis tuarascáil Ernst & Young ar an OSP don aersheirbhís a fháil; agus an ndéanfaidh sé ráiteas ina thaobh. [23958/14]

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Written answers (Question to Arts)

Mar is eol don Teachta, d'fhoilsigh mé an tuarascáil athbhreithnithe a rinne EY ar an tseirbhís aeir d’Oileáin Árann faoi Oibleagáid Seirbhíse Poiblí ar an 28 Bealtaine. Tá an tuarascáil curtha ag mo Roinn faoi bhráid an Choimisiúin Eorpaigh i gcomhréir le Rialacháin an Aontais Eorpaigh 1008/2008/EC. Beidh na moltaí atá sa tuarascáil á scrúdú go mion ag mo Roinn sa tréimhse atá romhainn sula dtógtar cinneadh maidir leis an gcéad chéim eile. Tá an conradh aersheirbhíse reatha i bhfeidhm go 30 Meán Fómhair 2014 agus tá sé de rogha ag mo Roinn síneadh bliana a chur leis.