Written Answers. - Wage Increases.

Michael Ring

Ceist:

182 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for the Marine and Natural Resources the reason the employees working for the fisheries board in the western region have not received the wage increases due to them. [27942/01]

I understand that the Deputy is referring to pay increases relating to the general operative grades in the fisheries boards.

In early October 2001 my Department conveyed sanction to the fisheries boards for the payment of the general round increase of 5.5% with effect from 1 October 2001 under the Programme for Prosperity and Fairness pay agreement. The Central Fisheries Board informs me that this has already been paid.

In March 2001 my Department informed the CFB that the revision of pay rates for general operative grades following the Craft Analogue 2000 agreement could be extended to the relevant grades in the fisheries boards subject to agreement on flexibility measures similar to those agreed in other areas of the public service. On 26 September 2001 the CFB formally sought sanction to pay the 2% local bargaining increase provided for under Clause 4 of the Partnership 2000 pay agreement with effect from 1 July 1999 and the craft analogue increase of £19.46 with effect from 1 October 2000. The matter was finalised by my Department following receipt on 5 November 2001 of a commitment from SIPTU regarding a voluntary code of practice on dispute procedures.

Sanction for both pay increases was conveyed to the CFB on 9 November 2001. The CFB informs me that payment of these increases will commence on Thursday 15 November 2001 and will be completed for all the fisheries boards by end-November 2001.