Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Ceisteanna (70)

Luke 'Ming' Flanagan

Ceist:

73 Deputy Luke “Ming” Flanagan asked the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation when the guidelines on the Services Directive, Directive 2006/123/EC, will issue; and if he will ensure that his Department carries through on issuing a notice to all local authorities regarding casual trading. [23114/12]

Amharc ar fhreagra

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

As stated in my previous reply, Directive 2006/123/EC [the Services Directive] on services in the internal market was transposed into Irish law by way of S.I. No. 533 of 2010, (European Communities (Provision of Services) Regulations 2010) and S.I. No. 555, (European Communities (Court Orders for the Protection of Consumer Interests) Regulations, 2010). The Directive is not concerned specifically with casual trading but with the provision of services in general. The service in the context of the Deputy's question is the regulation of casual trading by local authorities which results in the provision of casual trading licences to traders to sell goods in public places.

On the 17th December 2009 my Department issued a detailed Notice to all 88 local authorities entitled to make bye laws under the Casual Trading Act 1995 outlining the obligations arising for them under the Services Directive. This Notice was drawn up in my Department following consultations with the Office of the Attorney General. Arising from this Notice, local authorities and others raised issues in respect of the obligations under the Services Directive. Regulation 14(2) of S.I. No. 533 of 2010 transposes Article 13(2) of the Services Directive. This Regulation states that competent authorities (in this case local authorities) shall ensure that the fees charged "are reasonable and proportionate to the cost of administering the scheme". The question arises as to how this provision interacts with the provision for fees in the Casual Trading Act 1995 [section 6(4)].

Consultations between my Department and the Office of the Attorney General are still ongoing in this matter. When these consultations have concluded, I can assure the Deputy that my Department will write to all local authorities, informing them of the position with regard to this issue and any other issues arising from how the Services Directive affects casual trading regulation.