Wednesday, 20 November 2019

Questions (81)

Shane Cassells


81. Deputy Shane Cassells asked the Minister for Finance the amount spent on purchasing mobile telephones for staff within his Department for work-related business in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019, by grade; if his Department has a contract with a mobile telephone company (details supplied) to supply mobile telephones if needed; if so, the name of the company; the date on which the contract for the supply of mobile telephones to his Department is next due to expire; and the robust steps taken to ensure that the costs incurred on work related telephones are the best value for the taxpayer. [47921/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

I wish to advise the Deputy that the Department of Finance has a mobile phone policy which defines the acceptable usage and management of official mobile phones. When staff are assigned mobile phones, they are entered into a contract bundle which gives allowances for calls, texts and data services.

Generally in the Department of Finance, staff at Secretary General, Assistant Secretary, Principal Officer and Assistant Principal Officer grades are assigned mobile phones where relevant for work purposes. In 2016 the provision of mobile handsets cost €7,263.17. This breakdown by grade is not readily available for 2016. The following table provides data relating to the amount spent by grade on purchasing official mobile phones in 2017, 2018 and 2019.





Secretary General / Second Secretary / Assistant Secretary




Principal Officer



Assistant Principal Officer



Administrative Officer / Higher Executive Officer





Phone stock pending business requirements


ICT systems, including mobile phone procurement, within the Department of Finance are provided by the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) under the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform currently has a contract in place with Three Ireland for the supply of Mobile Phone Services & Handsets, this contract is due to expire in April 2020. My Department also has a small number of handsets registered with Vodafone.

The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform is currently undertaking a market exercise for the successor contract run under the Office of Government Procurement’s Mobile Phone Framework. Public procurement measures ensure that there are robust steps in place in the process and that the tenders are evaluated and awarded on the basis of the most economically advantageous tender, thus providing the best value to the taxpayer.