Electoral Commission Establishment

Questions (121)

Emmet Stagg

Question:

121. Deputy Emmet Stagg asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government when will an electoral commission be established; and the functions envisaged. [28687/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Programme for Government contains a commitment to establish an Electoral Commission to subsume functions of existing bodies and my Department. It is intended that the necessary policy analysis and preparatory work for the presentation of options in relation to the establishment of an Electoral Commission will be advanced in 2014. This will involve detailed and considered work. Issues for consideration will include international best practice, the Commission's structure and functions, who it reports to, its relationship with other bodies currently involved in electoral administration, and the approach to be followed in relation to the extensive legislation that will be required, as well as practical matters including staffing and funding arrangements.

EU-IMF Programme of Support

Questions (122, 123)

Arthur Spring

Question:

122. Deputy Arthur Spring asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the annual cost of water to the State on the date the memorandum of understanding was signed with the troika; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28691/14]

View answer

Arthur Spring

Question:

123. Deputy Arthur Spring asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the cost per household of water charges envisaged when the memorandum of understanding with the troika was signed; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28692/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 122 and 123 together.

The Programme of Support between the European Commission , the European Central Bank, the International Monetary Fund and Ireland, agreed in December 2010 , provided that the Government would undertake an independent assessment of transfer of responsibility for water services provision from local authorities to a water utility, and prepare proposals for implementation, as appropriate with a view to start charging for water within the Programme period.

In 2010 total expenditure on water services amounted to €1.235 billion comprised of €519 million provided by the Exchequer and operational expenditure by the local authorities of €716 million.

Local Authority Housing Data

Questions (124)

Dessie Ellis

Question:

124. Deputy Dessie Ellis asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he will provide in tabular form the number of persons on the housing waiting list for Westmeath County Council area broken down by the number of single applicants and families on the list; and the number that have been waiting in excess of two, five and ten years, respectively, to be housed. [28698/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The results of the statutory Summary of Social Housing Assessments carried out in 20 13 showed that there were a total of 1,893 households on the local authority waiting lists for Westmeath County Council and the former Athlone Town Council as at 7 May 2013. T hese results , which include breakdowns by each local authority across a range of categories, including the composition of households and the length of time spent on lists, are available on my Department’s website at:

http://www.environ.ie/en/Publications/DevelopmentandHousing/Housing/FileDownLoad,34857,en.pdf

The 2013 figures are the most up-to-date figures available on waiting list numbers, which are subject to on-going fluctuation due to households being allocated housing and new households applying for housing support. 

Land Ownership

Questions (125)

Anthony Lawlor

Question:

125. Deputy Anthony Lawlor asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government how much land is owned by the Housing Finance Agency under the land aggregation scheme in County Kildare; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28733/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Land Aggregation Scheme was introduced in 2010 as part of revised arrangements for the funding of land for social housing purposes. Applications to the value of some €164 million in loans were accepted into the Land Aggregation Scheme. The figure of €164m includes €111m in respect of loans which were fully redeemed by local authorities with funding recouped from my Department, under the original terms of the scheme. The remaining €53m is in the form of annuity loans with the Housing Finance Agency for which local authorities are making repayments to the Housing Finance Agency, with these payments being recouped from my Department.

In 2013, as a consequence of continuing pressure on Exchequer resources, and following a review of the scheme carried out in consultation with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, it became evident that further expenditure on the Land Aggregation Scheme, in terms of accepting new applications into the scheme, was no longer a sustainable option. Local authorities were advised of the discontinuance of the Scheme in respect of new applications in December 2013. The focus of the Land Aggregation Scheme has now shifted to the management of the land accepted into the s cheme.

Five sites from Kildare County Council were approved for inclusion under the first iteration of the Land Aggregation Scheme. A condition of the scheme requires the transfer of the land to the Housing Agency. Contracts for four of the sites have been received from Kildare County Council by the Housing Agency. However, some outstanding queries have yet to be resolved before the transfer of the lands can be finalised. Discussions are on-going between the Housing Agency and Kildare County Council regarding the transfer of the remaining site.

Single Payment Scheme Transfers

Questions (126)

Éamon Ó Cuív

Question:

126. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine when a decision will be made on a transfer of single payment entitlements in respect of a person (details supplied) in County Galway; the reason for the delay in this process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28602/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

My Department received a Transfer of Entitlements application on 18 February 2014 for the above herd number. As the requested transfer was by way of inheritance, it was necessary to request the normal testamentary documentation in support of this transfer. All necessary documentation has now been received. This application has been processed and acceptance letters were issued on 27 June, 2014.

Departmental Agencies Reports

Questions (127)

Anthony Lawlor

Question:

127. Deputy Anthony Lawlor asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine when he expects the annual report from Horse Racing Ireland to be published. [28614/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

The Annual Accounts of Horse Racing Ireland for 2013 are at present being audited by the Comptroller and Audit General. Once that audit is completed, the annual report and accounts will be forwarded to my Department for consideration, after which I will present them to Government within a very short timeframe. The annual report and accounts will then be laid before both Houses of the Oireachtas prior to their publication by Horse Racing Ireland.

Departmental Agencies Reports

Questions (128)

Anthony Lawlor

Question:

128. Deputy Anthony Lawlor asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine with regard to the annual accounts for Tote Ireland, which is a subsidiary of Horse Racing Ireland, if it is possible that greater detail than has heretofore been provided by HRI in respect of Tote Ireland will be included in the 2013 accounts; if these details could include salaries and costs associated with the operations of the tote, such as sponsorship and payments to racecourses; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28615/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

Tote Ireland Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Horse Racing Ireland. Tote Ireland Limited is incorporated under the Companies Acts. Financial statements are prepared for Tote Ireland Limited for each financial year in accordance with Irish company law and statutory returns are filed with the Companies Office. In addition the annual report and accounts of Tote Ireland Limited are laid by my Department before both Houses of the Oireachtas.

Most of the detail sought by the Deputy appears in the statutory accounts or in the Notes to the Financial Statements which form part of the statutory accounts. The 2012 annual report and accounts of Tote Ireland Limited, which are the most recent available, were laid before both Houses in 2013 and these show the following:

- Payments to Racecourses are included in the Profit and Loss Account, €135,648 (2012).

- Details in relation to Staff Numbers and Costs are contained in Note 1 to the Financial Statements.

- A detailed breakdown of Operating and Administration Expenses is contained in Note 2.

Details of Sponsorship costs are not published by Tote Ireland Limited. The Deputy may wish to request this information directly from Horse Racing Ireland

Tuberculosis Eradication Programme Administration

Questions (129)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

129. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine his views on correspondence (details supplied) regarding animals with TB; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28707/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

Where a holding is restricted as a result of TB reactors being identified, EU legislation requires that the re-test cannot be conducted until at least 60 days after the removal of the last positive reactor. In addition, the general requirement in EU legislation is that two clear tests must be completed before the holding can be de restricted, the second test taking place not earlier than 60 days after the first re-test.

My Department makes every effort to facilitate removal of reactors as quickly as possible following the completion of the valuation process. However, ultimately, the speed of removal is heavily influenced by a number of factors such as the numbers of factories accepting reactor animals at any given time, the overall supply/demand situation for cattle and the procedures surrounding on-farm market valuation process. Data for 2013 shows that, on average, bovine animals are removed for slaughter within 19 days of the date of the relevant test.

Direct Provision System

Questions (130)

Finian McGrath

Question:

130. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if she will support the 1,791 children in direct provision centres that are overcrowded; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27901/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The Reception and Integration Agency (RIA) of my Department is responsible for the accommodation of protection applicants in accordance with the Government policy of direct provision and dispersal.

As at 8 June 2014, there were 4,353 persons availing of direct provision accommodation in 34 centres under contract to the Reception and Integration Agency (RIA) of my Department. Approximately 38 % of these residents are children under the age of 18.

I am assured by RIA that centres are not overcrowded. All accommodation in use by RIA is subject to compliance with the various statutory provisions, including the Housing Acts governing accommodation of the type provided to asylum seekers. All accommodation providers and other companies engaged by the State are required under contract to ensure that all accommodation centres comply and operate in accordance with all of the statutory requirements of local authorities and State agencies in relation to bedroom capacity, food, food hygiene, water supply, fire safety, general safety and so forth. So far as the needs of babies, children and expectant mothers are concerned, rigorous contractual requirements are imposed on accommodation providers.

Temporary overcrowding can occur when the family profile has changed on the basis of age or newly arrived family member. For example, under RIA policy, children aged 10 years or more should not share a bedroom with a family member of the opposite gender. In those circumstances, where it is not possible to provide additional accommodation within the centre, RIA offers alternative accommodation at another centre. However, a family may choose to refuse the offer of a transfer to another centre because either (a) it prefers the current arrangement or (b) it wants to await a better offer. Where a family refuses an offer of alternative accommodation in such circumstances, RIA keeps the family details under review and further offers are made as deemed suitable.

Generally, the safety of all residents – especially children – is at the forefront of RIA’s objectives. RIA affords the highest priority to the safeguarding and protection of children. RIA is, and will always be, compliant with all legislative requirements in this area. RIA has a fully staffed child and family service unit, the head of which is seconded from the HSE and whose role is to manage, deliver, coordinate, monitor and plan all matters relating to child and family services for all residents in the direct provision system. The unit also acts as a conduit between RIA and Child and Family Agency (Tusla), the latter having statutory functions in this area.

RIA's Child Protection and Welfare Policy is based on the the Department of Children and Youth Affairs' “Children First- National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children”. This guidance document was developed to assist people in identifying and reporting child abuse and welfare concerns. The protection and welfare policy emphasises that the needs of children and families must be central to child care and child protection and welfare. RIA's policy has been reviewed and updated and now contains a practice document to make it more user friendly. That draft document is now with Tusla for final feedback and it is anticipated that it will be published by the end of August, 2014 on RIA’s website www.ria.gov.ie.

Direct Provision System

Questions (131)

Finian McGrath

Question:

131. Deputy Finian McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if she will provide an update on the 2012 report of the Special Rapporteur on Children in direct provision which highlighted the real risk of these children; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27902/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The Reception and Integration Agency (RIA) of my Department is responsible for the accommodation of protection applicants in accordance with the Government policy of direct provision and dispersal. Direct provision provides for full board accommodation supports while a final decision is awaited by a person on their protection or any related leave to remain application. As at 8 June 2014 there were 4,353 persons availing of direct provision accommodation and supports in 34 accommodation centres in the State.

The sixth report of the Special Rapporteur on Children relating to 2012 was published on the website of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs in July 2013. There is no specific reference to children in Direct Provision in that report. Nonetheless, I have recounted in detail in replies to previous Dáil Questions how the Government affords the highest priority to the safeguarding and protection of children in that system. In particular, I have pointed out that RIA operates a Child Protection Policy is based on the HSE's "Children First - National Guidelines for the protection and welfare of children" and that there is a specific unit in RIA called the Child and Family Services Unit, which is fully staffed and whose role is to manage, deliver, coordinate, monitor and plan all matters relating to child and family services for all asylum seekers residing in the direct provision system.

More generally, I acknowledge that the length of time that residents spend in Direct Provision is an issue to be addressed. My immediate priority is that the factors which lead to delays in the processing of cases are dealt with. In this regard, legislative reform aimed at establishing a single application procedure for the investigation of all grounds for protection is a key priority for this Government. Such reform would substantially simplify and streamline the existing arrangements by removing the current multi-layered and sequential processes and provide applicants with a final decision on their application in a more straightforward and timely fashion. In consultation with my officials, I am reviewing the work done to date in respect of the Immigration, Residence and Protection Bill and will then decide on how best to progress the implementation of the Government's priorities, in particular to expedite those relating to the establishment of a single application procedure.

Garda Station Refurbishment

Questions (132)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

132. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the proposed relocation of Clonmel Garda station to a new site; if the new site has been purchased; when she expects the relocation to take place; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28580/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The programme of refurbishment and replacement of Garda stations is based on accommodation priorities which are established by An Garda Síochána. The programme is advanced in close co-operation with the Office of Public Works, which has responsibility for the provision and maintenance of Garda accommodation. Funding for such works is met by the Office of Public Works.

I am advised by the Garda authorities that the provision of a new station on a site within the former Kickham Barracks is being examined by the Office of Public Works and An Garda Síochána in the context of the future development of the overall site.

The Deputy will appreciate that any new District Headquarters project would involve substantial building and fit out costs. Accordingly, a new Garda station in Clonmel will have to be progressed in the context of An Garda Síochána's identified accommodation requirements and in the light of available resources within the Vote of the Office of Public Works.

Garda Deployment

Questions (133)

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

133. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if she will provide in tabular form the number of Garda currently attached to each individual Garda station across County Donegal; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28584/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of personnel among the Garda Regions, Divisions and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continuing review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the best possible use is made of these resources.

I have however been informed by the Garda Commissioner that the personnel strength of each Garda Station in the Donegal Garda Division on 30 April 2014, the latest date for which figures are readily available, are as set out in the table hereunder:

District/Station

Garda

Reserve

Civilian

Ballyshannon

An Charraig

2

Ard an Rátha

1

Ballintra

1

Ballyshannon

48

2

Bundoran

6

Donegal Town

28

4

1

Mountcharles

1

Na Cealla Beaga

6

Na Gleannta

15

3

Pettigo

1

Buncrana

Buncrana

47

4

3

Burnfoot

5

Carndonagh

6

1

Clonmany

1

Moville

4

Muff

4

Letterkenny

Ballybofey

25

7

1

Carrigans

2

Castlefin

4

Convoy

3

Letterkenny

104

14

14

Lifford

14

1

Newtowncunningham

2

Raphoe

3

Milford

Ailt an Chorráin

1

An Bun Beag

16

An Clochán Liath

7

An Craoslach

1

An Fál Carrach

9

Carraig Airt

2

Dún Fionnachaid

2

Kerrykeel

3

Kilmacrennan

1

Milford

26

3

Ramelton

2

Rathmujllen

1

Garda Transport Data

Questions (134)

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

134. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if she will provide in tabular form the number of Garda cars attached to each individual Garda station in County Donegal; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28610/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy will be aware the provision and allocation of Garda vehicles is a matter for the Garda Commissioner in the light of her identified operational demands and the availability of resources.

Responsibility for the efficient deployment of Garda vehicles in each Division is assigned to the Divisional Officer, who may allocate vehicles between stations, as required by operational circumstances. The Deputy will appreciate that a degree of flexibility in allocating and re-allocating vehicles among stations, so as to best match the allocation of resources with policing priorities, is essential to the efficient management of the Garda fleet. As a consequence it is not fully practicable to provide a breakdown of Garda vehicles by each individual Garda station.

In that context, I am advised by the Garda authorities that the number of Garda vehicles by District within the Donegal Division at the end of June 2013, is set out in the table below:

District

Vehicles

Ballyshannon District

18

Buncrana District

10

Letterkenny District

21

Milford District

12

Garda Transport Data

Questions (135)

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

135. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of Garda cars that have been decommissioned in the Milford district in County Donegal because they have reached the 300,000 kilometre mark in terms of mileage in the past six months; the number of cars that have been replaced; her plans to replace those cars which have not been replaced; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28612/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy will be aware the provision and allocation of Garda transport is a matter for the Garda Commissioner in the context of identified operational circumstances and the availability of resources.

Garda vehicles are retired for a variety of reasons, including where vehicles are considered beyond economic repair or as a result of accidents. Also, I understand from the Garda authorities that the relevant manufacturers have indicated that, for safety reasons, vehicles should be withdrawn from service at certain stages. Accordingly, this is the operational policy that is applied by the Garda authorities. I am advised by the Garda authorities that one vehicle has been decommissioned in the past six months in the Milford District. I am further informed that three new vehicles have been assigned to the Milford District in 2014.

As the Deputy will be aware, a further €9m was secured towards the end of 2013 for investment in the Garda fleet. This investment resulted in the purchase of 305 new Garda vehicles, at a cost of €5 million. These were in addition to the 133 Garda vehicles which had already been procured during the year. I am advised by the Garda authorities that these new vehicles are currently being allocated across Garda Divisions in accordance with operational requirements. The remaining €4 million has been made available for the purchase and fit out of Garda vehicles in 2014.

Registration of Title

Questions (136, 137)

Éamon Ó Cuív

Question:

136. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the policy in respect of showing sea-weed harvesting rights registered on folios on the PRAI land registry search mechanism; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28630/14]

View answer

Éamon Ó Cuív

Question:

137. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Justice and Equality her plans to issue a directive under section 20(1) of the Registration of Title Deeds Act 2006 instructing the PRAI land registry to correctly register seaweed harvesting rights on folios and to re-issue faulty title deeds, free of charge, where the PRAI land registry has not detailed these rights on a folio on transfer, as they should; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28631/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 136 and 137 together.

I should advise the Deputy that the register of titles, maintained in the Land Registry office by the Property Registration Authority, can only show legal rights that are burdens on title, within the meaning of Section 69 of the Registration of Title Act 1964, or that are appurtenant to registered lands. Such rights must be created by express Deed of Grant or where the law allows, acquired by prescription. In the case of the right to harvest seaweed, only rights vested by Land Commission as appurtenant to lands purchased under the Land Purchase Acts have been registered in the Land Registry.

A right to take something from the land of another, which is created by Deed of Grant or acquired by prescription, is a profit à prendre. The holder of a profit à prendre has a legal right in land that is capable of registration as an appurtenant right by including such right as part of the description of the lands to which it is appurtenant. It can also be held in gross, that is existing in its own right and not as an appurtenance to other land. In that case, it may be registered on the subsidiary register maintained by the Property Registration Authority.

A licence is generally defined as permission to enter land and do something that would otherwise be a trespass. A licence to harvest seaweed, issued pursuant to Section 3 of the Foreshore Act 1933 (as amended) is not a profit à prendre, as it is not created by a Deed of Grant. It is not, therefore, a legal right in property that is registerable under the Registration of Title Act 1964 as amended.

As set out in Section 20(1) of the Registration of Deeds and Title Act 2006, I can issue general policy directives concerning registration of deeds or ownership or any other function of the Authority. However, registrations are made on application and it would not be a matter for the Authority to make any registration for which no application is made. The rights that are capable of registration are set out in the Registration of Deeds and Title Acts 1964 to 2006.

In any event, a licence to harvest seaweed, issued pursuant to Section 3 of the Foreshore Act 1933 (as amended) is not a legal right in property that is registerable under the Registration of Title Act 1964 as amended. Therefore, any such registration is beyond the remit of the Property Registration Authority. Accordingly, I cannot avail of the policy provisions of Section 20(1) to instruct the Property Registration Authority to act in a manner that is outside of its legislative functions and powers.

Firearms Licences

Questions (138)

Robert Troy

Question:

138. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if her Department has finished examining key issues relating to firearms licensing in conjunction with An Garda Síochána (details supplied). [28635/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy is aware my Department is currently examining key issues relating to firearms licensing in conjunction with An Garda Síochána. The recommendations arising from this process are nearing completion. I expect to receive a report in relation to these matters in the coming weeks. Consultation with relevant stakeholders will take place when I have considered the report and before any decisions are finalised in relation to proposals for changes to the firearms licensing system.

Proposed Legislation

Questions (139)

Charlie McConalogue

Question:

139. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when she expects the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality on sex trafficking laws to be implemented; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28651/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The Deputy's question appears to refer to the Justice Committee's "Report on hearings and submissions on the Review of Legislation on Prostitution".

I am examining the recommendations made by the Justice Committee regarding a new approach to prostitution legislation.

When I have had the opportunity to properly consider all of the issues legislative proposals will be brought to Government in the usual way.

Legal Services Regulation

Questions (140)

Brendan Griffin

Question:

140. Deputy Brendan Griffin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the recourse available to persons who are victims of a fraud by solicitors acting on their behalf; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [28661/14]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

Under the Solicitors Acts 1954 to 2011 the Law Society is currently the designated authority responsible for the regulation of the solicitors' profession in the State and members of the public can make complaints about solicitors to the Society, as the statutory regulator, under this framework. As part of that function, particularly under Part IV of the Solicitors (Amendment) Act 1994 dealing with the 'Protection of Clients', the Law Society is obliged to continue to maintain and administer the Solicitors Compensation Fund. Where it is proved to the satisfaction of the Law Society that any client of a solicitor has sustained loss in consequence of fraud or dishonesty on the part of that solicitor or any clerk or servant of that solicitor arising from that solicitor's practice as a solicitor within the jurisdiction of the State, then, subject to the relevant provisions, the Society is required to make a grant to that client out of the Compensation Fund. It is also provided that before a practising certificate can be issued to a solicitor, the solicitor in question must have paid the annual contribution to the Fund and the issuing of a practising certificate can be withheld until the payment has been made.

As such, the Compensation Fund and its attendant inspection procedures provide an important protection against acts of fraud and dishonesty that may be perpetrated by solicitors in the handling of clients’ monies. As Deputies will be aware, the Fund has been relied upon in a number of high profile cases in recent times. In the five years of 2008 to 2012, I am advised the Fund paid out a total of €17.7 million in claims. The total in claims actually made for that same period was nearly €48 million. There was a 9% increase in the 266 claims made against the Compensation Fund in 2012 over the previous year's 244 claims though this remains much less than the peak of 672 claims received in 2008. The net assets of the Solicitors Compensation Fund were valued at €18 million as at 30th June 2013. In the six months up to that date 165 claims on the Fund were received which, excluding invalid claims refused, amounted to €1.16 million. The annual contribution to the Fund for 2013 is €760 per solicitor. Annual insurance cover for €50 million with an excess of €5 million is also in place.

Under the Compensation Fund structures provided for under the Solicitors Acts, the Law Society is, therefore, able to respond immediately to serious financial complaints and has the right to carry out investigations, without notification, where justified by the circumstances. The Society can also apply to the High Court for orders to protect clients' funds when serious irregularities arise. Pay-outs by the Compensation Fund have a serious impact, including in terms of ongoing costs, across its entire solicitor membership. To that extent, the Fund has a capacity to strongly incentivise financial compliance by solicitors in the public interest. It should also be borne in mind that, following the enactment of the Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Act 2010, the Law Society is required to investigate compliance with anti-laundering regulations.

It should also be noted that under the new Legal Services Regulation Bill which is to commence Report Stage in the Dáil on 17 July, matters of misconduct or discipline relating to solicitors or barristers will be dealt with under the aegis of the new and independent Legal Services Regulatory Authority and the Legal Practitioners' Disciplinary Tribunal and that members of the public will no longer make such complaints through the legal professional bodies.