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Decentralisation Programme

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 15 June 2010

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Ceisteanna (4)

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

89 Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation the cost incurred to date by his Department arising from the decentralisation proposals; the extent if known of any further or likely costs in this regard; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24793/10]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation)

In consultation with the Department of Finance and the Office of Public Works (OPW), my Department opened an advance office in Carlow on 30 July 2007 for the staff of the National Employment Rights Authority (NERA) and the Companies Registration Office (CRO). It is my understanding from the OPW, which has primary responsibility for the procurement of suitable office accommodation for the Government's Decentralisation Programme, that the fit-out costs of the advance office in Carlow were approximately €2,068,000 and that the yearly rental cost for this temporary office is in the region of €369,000.

The non-property decentralisation costs incurred from January 2004 (when the Government's Decentralisation Programme started) to end May 2010 amount to €505,323. The breakdown of the €505,323 figure into its constituent elements is as follows:

Office Machinery

171,849

Salaries & Allowances

136,980

Incidental

124,057

Consultancy

29,620

Office Premises

27,883

Travel and Subsistence

14,628

Postal & Telecom Services

306

The OPW has also acquired a site, at a cost of €1,440,000, in Carlow town centre for the construction of a permanent office there for the staff of NERA and the CRO and for other staff of my Department who were scheduled to decentralise to Carlow. The former Minister of State, Noel Ahern TD, announced on 13 December 2007 that the OPW had invited the Macquarie Partnership to be the consortium to become the ‘successful tenderer' in respect of this project. However, as the construction of the permanent office in Carlow had not started and as no contracts had been signed, the Minister for Finance decided, in December 2009 in the context of the Budget, to defer construction of the proposed permanent office for my Department in Carlow for the time being, pending an overall review of the Government's Decentralisation Programme in late 2011.

Apart from the ongoing costs associated with having NERA and CRO staff in the advance office in Carlow, it is not anticipated that there will be any further costs incurred by the OPW on behalf of my Department between now and the completion of the review of the Government's Decentralisation Programme in late 2011.

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