Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Questions (436)

Jim O'Callaghan


436. Deputy Jim O'Callaghan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the funding allocated to the traffic corps in 2018 in each Garda district; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12830/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The Deputy will be aware that there has been an unprecedented level of investment in Garda resources across the State in recent years, in support of the Government’s commitment to ensuring a strong and visible police presence throughout the country to maintain and strengthen community engagement, provide reassurance to citizens and deter crime.

An allocation of €1.76 billion has been provided by Government to An Garda Síochána for 2019. Very significant capital investment is also being made, including investment of €342 million in Garda ICT infrastructure between 2016 and 2021; and investment of €46 million in the Garda Fleet over the same period.

As the Deputy will appreciate, in accordance with Section 26 of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 as amended, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for managing and controlling the administration and business of An Garda Síochána. Further, the allocation of Garda resources is a matter for the Commissioner, in light of identified operational demands. I understand that Garda management keeps the distribution of resources under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities, to ensure their optimum use.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that the Dublin Metropolitan Region has a separate Division for Roads Policing, with attributed costs for 2018 of €9.8 million.

However I am informed that outside of the DMR, it is not currently possible to isolate the cost of Roads Policing from other policing duties and costs.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that this is the case because annual budgets are devolved to each region in An Garda Síochána, which, in turn, allocate a budget to Divisions under their remit in accordance with operational priorities. Each Division is then responsible for the allocation of its budget amongst its Districts. As District expenditure is not currently accounted for on an activity basis, it is not possible to isolate the cost of roads policing from other policing duties and costs. The Garda authorities also point out that members who are not attached to the Roads Policing may be assigned to traffic duties, depending on operational need.

The Deputy will however wish to be aware that An Garda Síochána is currently implementing a Roster and Duty Management System (RDMS) which will in future facilitate the costing of various duties, including Roads Policing. The RDMS is currently being piloted in the DMR East Division and wider roll-out to all Divisions is intended in the future.