Written Answers. - National Roads Authority.

Paul Bradford

Ceist:

92 Mr. Bradford asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government the relationship which exists between his Department and the National Roads Authority [15462/98]

Under section 17 of the Roads Act, 1993, the National Roads Authority has overall responsibility for the planning and supervision of works for the construction and maintenance of national roads. The Minister for the Environment and Local Government appoints the members of the authority and performs certain broad policy, financial, and quasi-judicial functions, such as the approval of motorway schemes and road developments, the subject of environmental impact statements and the payment of block grants to the authority.

The policy framework for the improvement of national roads is set out in the Operational Programme for Transport 1994 to 1999 which was agreed between the Government and the European Commission in 1994. Within this framework, it is a matter for the NRA to prioritise and schedule individual road improvement projects and to progress them in co-operation with local authorities. The Minister has no function in relation to the day-to-day administration and management of the work programme on national roads or in relation to the allocation of funds for individual projects.