Thursday, 27 June 2019

Questions (219)

Noel Grealish

Question:

219. Deputy Noel Grealish asked the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the number of properties here that hold a television licence; the rate of non-compliance with the legislation; the number of persons prosecuted for not having a licence in each of the years 2013 to 2018; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27276/19]

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Written answers (Question to Communications)

A total of 1,038,986 licences were sold in 2018. In recent years the rate of compliance has increased from 84.5% in 2013 to 87.2% in 2018.

Under the Broadcasting Act, 2009, An Post is the designated agent, acting on my behalf, for the collection of the Television Licence fee. In line with the Act, An Post deals with all day to day operational matters of the current licence fee regime.

An Post makes every effort to bring evaders into the licensed pool and a considerable amount of time and resources are spent in dealing specifically with this issue. An Post concentrates its initial efforts on getting people to buy the licence when due and by following up with a series of reminder notices and inspector visits. Bringing people to court is a last resort and only carried out where all other means have failed.

The number of summons issued and cases brought to court between 2014 and 2018 are set out in the table under:

Year

Number of Summons applied for

Number of cases brought to court

2013

21,761

14,307

2014

20,877

13,976

2015

17,763

12,302

2016

17,608

11,994

2017

17,288

11,693

2018

16,120

10,234

The imposition and collection of fines for non-payment of TV licence fees are a matter for the Courts Service in conjunction with An Garda Síochána and An Post does not receive statistics on imposition and collection of fines from the Courts Service.