Thursday, 12 December 2019

Questions (363)

Niall Collins

Question:

363. Deputy Niall Collins asked the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government the number of credit cards issued to Ministers and officials working in his Department; the amount spent on credit cards in each year since 2016; the bank interest paid on credit cards in each year since 2016; the controls in place to monitor the issuing of and the expenditure on the cards; the controls in place in each agency to monitor expenditure on personally held credit card bills that are subsequently used to recoup work-related expenses; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52405/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Housing)

My Department does not have any credit cards issued to Ministers or officials. My Department operates a Purchase Card system, which was implemented in July 2019 and was drawn down from the Office of Government Procurement framework agreement for the provision of purchasing card programmes to the Irish Public Sector. The Purchase Cards replaced credit card use in my Department.

The information requested is set out in the following table:

2016

2017

2018

2019 (Nov)

Credit Cards

Number of Cards

5

3

5

5

Card Charges

€130

€128

€172

€193

Amount Spent

€23,778

€15,418

€12,632

€26,732

Purchase Cards

Number of Cards

N/A

N/A

N/A

20

Card Charges

N/A

N/A

N/A

€0

Amount Spent

N/A

N/A

N/A

€6,416

The credit card information in this table is up until September 2019 at which point all credit cards were cancelled. The purchase card information only begins in July 2019. There was an overlap period of 3 months during the purchase card implementation process. There was no interest charged in the period concerned.

My Department has a Purchase Card Policy which includes, inter alia, an application process for issuing purchase cards that must be approved by senior management and an expenditure monitoring and approval process.

The monitoring and controlling of credit cards in agencies under the aegis of my Department is a matter for the individual agencies concerned. Arrangements have been put in place by each Agency to facilitate the provision of information by State Bodies directly to members of the Oireachtas. The contact email address for each agency is as below:

Agency

Email address

An Bord Pleanála

Oireachtasqueries@pleanala.ie

Ervia, Gas Networks Ireland

oireachtas@ervia.ie

Housing Sustainable Communities Agency

publicreps@housingagency.ie

Housing Finance Agency

oireachtas.enquiries@hfa.ie

Irish Water

oireachtasmembers@water.ie

Local Government Management Agency

corporate@lgma.ie

Ordnance Survey Ireland

Oireachtas@osi.ie

Property Registration Authority

reps@prai.ie

Pyrite Resolution Board

oireachtasinfo@pyriteboard.ie

Residential Tenancies Board

OireachtasMembersQueries@rtb.ie

Valuation Office

oireachtas.enquiries@VALOFF.ie

Land Development Agency

oireachtas@lda.ie

Office of the Planning Regulator

oireachtas@opr.ie