Written Answers. - Government Contracts.

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

80 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Social Welfare the number and names of public relations firms which have obtained Government contracts in the past 15 months; the value of such contracts; the terms of reference; the reason for such contracts; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

In the period in question, one public relations firm, Walsh Public Relations Ltd., obtained a contract from my Department at a fee of £15,500 per annum, inclusive of VAT. The contract's terms of reference are to advise on communications and public relations matters relating to my Department's schemes and services. Having regard to the nature of my Department's schemes and services which affect the majority of the population either directly or indirectly, professional public relations advice is necessary to ensure that departmental policy is communicated in a manner which can be easily understood and which gains the widest possible circulation.

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

81 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice the number and names of public relations firms which have obtained Government contracts in the past 15 months; the value of such contracts; the terms of reference; the reason for such contracts; and if she will make a statement on the matter.

I refer the Deputy to my reply to Question No. 113 of 8 February 1994, Parliamentary Debates Volume 438, No. 4, column 914. There has been no change in the situation since.