Thursday, 3 October 2019

Questions (98)

Niamh Smyth

Question:

98. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the reason for the downgrading of Ballyconnell Garda station, County Cavan; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [39520/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The resources provided by Government to An Garda Síochána have reached unprecedented levels, with an allocation for 2019 of €1.76 billion. Very significant capital investment is also being made in An Garda Síochána, including a total of €92 million this year.

As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of resources, including the allocation of Garda vehicles and personnel, among the various Garda Divisions. As Minister, I have no direct role in the matter. I am assured however that Garda management keeps this 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 as part of the Garda District and Station Rationalisation Programme. the Ballyconnell and Cavan Districts were amalgamated in 2013. I am informed by the Garda authorities that there is currently no plan to return Ballyconnell Garda station to full 24 hours opening.

The Garda Commissioner has informed me that a 24-hour mobile Garda response capability continues to be maintained in the area and that the primary focus of local Gardaí has and will be to maintain a visible Garda presence in the general area.

The Deputy may also wish to be aware that a new Armed Support Unit was established this week in Cavan, adding to the two other ASUs already in An supported by additional Armed Support Unit personnel in the coming months.

More generally, the Deputy may wish to note the Garda strength of the Cavan/Monaghan Division from 2009 to 30 August 2019 , as provided by the Commissioner, which is available on my Department’s website through the following link. http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/003_Garda_Numbers_by_Division_2006_to_August_2019.xlsx/Files/003_Garda_Numbers_by_Division_2006_to_August_2019.xlsx

As the Deputy will see, the number of Gardaí allocated to the Cavan/Monaghan Division has increased from 318 at the end of 2015, to 372 at the end of August 2019, which represents a 17% increase in Garda numbers in the Division. These Gardaí are supported by 44 Garda Staff, as of the same date.

For more general information on Garda Facts and Figures please see the following link.

http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/An_Garda_Siochana_facts_and_figures

The following table outlines details of the Garda fleet attached to the Cavan/Monaghan Divisional Fleet as at 30 September 2019.

The Deputy may also wish to be aware that a capital allocation of €10 million has been made available for the purchase and fit-out of Garda vehicles in 2019. I understand from the Garda authorities that this allocation will be used for purchase and fit-out of over 300 new vehicles for operational use this year.

Cars

Vans

Motorbikes

4 x 4

*Others

Total

CAVAN-MONAGHAN TOTAL

42

14

2

1

0

59

BAILIEBORO DISTRICT

9

2

0

0

0

11

CARRICKMACROSS DISTRICT

7

2

0

1

0

10

CAVAN DISTRICT

16

4

1

0

0

21

MONAGHAN DISTRICT

10

6

1

0

0

17

*The category 'other' refers to MPV, SUV, Minibus or Prisoner Conveyance Vehicles