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Programme for Government

Dáil Éireann Debate, Wednesday - 31 March 2021

Wednesday, 31 March 2021

Questions (493)

Jennifer Whitmore

Question:

493. Deputy Jennifer Whitmore asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage the progress in establishing a working group on the legacy of poor building practices as committed to under the programme for Government; the work carried out on the issue to date; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [17119/21]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

The Programme for Government sets out a number of commitments in respect of the important policy area of building defects and provides for an examination of defects in housing, having regard to the recommendations of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Housing report, "Safe as Houses".

In this regard, my Department has been actively engaging with key stakeholders and I have had several meetings with stakeholder representative groups on this matter.

I recently appointed Mr Seamus Neely, former Chief Executive of Donegal County Council, to the position of Chair to the independent working group. The Chair will oversee the effective implementation of the group’s terms of reference.

In addition, I brought a Memorandum for the Information of the Government to Cabinet recently to note the establishment of a working group with the appropriate expertise to examine the issue of defects in housing. The membership of the working group includes representatives, with relevant expertise and experience, from Engineers Ireland, the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland, the Society of Chartered Surveyors of Ireland, the Public Sector, the Local Authority Sector, the Legal Sector, the Department of Finance, Construction Defects Alliance and Apartment Owners Network. The inaugural plenary working group meeting was held last week.

In regard to the working group’s deliberations, the group will seek to engage with a range of interested parties, including homeowners, public representatives, local authorities, product manufacturers, building professionals and industry stakeholders, among others to examine the issue of defects in housing and report to me on the matter.

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