Thursday, 17 October 2019

Questions (293)

Alan Kelly


293. Deputy Alan Kelly asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will provide all correspondence to or from her Department with Pobal to date in 2019. [42785/19]

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Written answers (Question to Children)

Pobal administers a significant number of schemes and programmes for the Department of Children and Youth Affairs, and there is almost daily interaction between the two bodies, involving correspondence to and from several officials of my Department.  The correspondence would arise, for example, in relation to the development of the new National Childcare Scheme, the operation of the existing childcare schemes such as ECCE, AIM, CCS, TEC, the operation of the Better Start Quality Development Service, and a range of other operational matters connected with Pobal's work for my Department. These include a significant compliance regime, the administration of annual Programme Support Payments, a continuous professional development scheme, a learner fund for up-skilling the workforce and annual capital schemes. Correspondence would also relate to the governance of Pobal, agreements relating to the annual programmes of work, individual service offers and funding.

Taking account of the volume of correspondence involved, it would not be possible for my Department to provide the information requested within the timescale available, and the correspondence would be voluminous.  However, I am anxious to assist the Deputy in his query to the greatest extent feasible.  If the Deputy could narrow his request for correspondence into specific areas, topics, or dates, my officials would then endeavour to assist him as much as possible.  I would note, of course, that the timescale for responding in full to his request will depend on the volume of correspondence that he is seeking.