Tuesday, 10 February 2004

Ceisteanna (379, 380)

Paul McGrath

Ceist:

455 Mr. P. McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government the grades of employees of local authorities which are entitled to receive the recent benchmarking payments; and if all local authorities are obliged to make these payments. [3986/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Paul McGrath

Ceist:

456 Mr. P. McGrath asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if temporary full-time employees of local authorities are entitled to be paid the benchmarking increases appropriate to their permanent colleagues; and if not, the reason therefor. [3987/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 455 and 456 together.

The benchmarking increases are payable to all local authority staff in the grades examined by the Public Service Benchmarking Body. In addition, measures are payable under the parallel benchmarking processes for local authority craft-workers and for general operatives employed by the local authorities outside Dublin, and to other local authority grades with an established relationship with the grades examined. No distinction is made between temporary and permanent staff.

Payment of the benchmarking awards is conditional on verified satisfactory progress on a programme of flexibility, modernisation and change issues and on the maintenance of stable industrial relations. In effect, where such conditions are complied with, local authorities would be obliged to make the payments.