Thursday, 11 July 2019

Questions (880)

Shane Cassells


880. Deputy Shane Cassells asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the oversight of his Department of directives, circulars, advice or requirements issued since 2016; if surveys have been carried out of compliance with these communications to date; the surveys carried out; the results of the surveys; the compliance rate; the actions taken by his Department following these results; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31331/19]

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Written answers (Question to Rural)

My Department was established on 19 July 2017. There are universally accepted governance principles and norms that apply to civil service and public sector organisations. The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has published its 'Corporate Governance Standards for the Civil Service' which details the standards that should be met by bodies in the civil and public service including by my Department.

The circulars and guidance of relevance to my Department issue from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. Where relevant, all staff are made aware of these circulars and/or guidance. For example, all new staff are provided with information on the most relevant circulars at the commencement of their employment. In general, these pre-date the establishment of the Department in July 2017 and include, for example, the Civil Service Code of Standards and Behaviour, and the Civil Service Disciplinary Code. In most instances, new circulars and guidance are for the attention of specific business units within the Department, for example the Human Resources unit with regard to pay and pensions, or annual leave and the Finance Unit with regard to the Public Spending Code or Appropriation Account circulars. In these cases it is those business units responsible who are made aware of the circulars, and who ensure application or implementation, and follow up to ensure compliance, as appropriate.

My Department recognises that good governance is about delivering priorities, achieving objectives, behaving with integrity and acting in the public interest, and in ways that are consistent with legal, regulatory and Government policy obligations. The Department's Governance Framework seeks to underpin this and its continued development will be informed and developed on foot of the learning experiences of the Department and its stakeholders.