The review of the Dormant Accounts Fund disbursement scheme, which was published in July 2018, set out 15 recommendations aimed at improving the management and administration of current and future disbursement schemes.
One of the recommendations was to establish an interdepartmental group for the Dormant Accounts Fund to meet on a six-monthly basis. The stated purpose of the group is to inform and monitor progress in the implementation of disbursement schemes and subsequent action plans and to ensure that up-to-date co-ordinated information is maintained.
The interdepartmental group has been established and it met for the first time on Thursday, 25 October 2018.
The group is chaired by my Department and membership consists of those Departments making use of dormant accounts funding. These include the Departments of Justice and Equality, Transport, Tourism and Sport, Health, Children and Youth Affairs and Education and Skills. Given its role in the operation of the fund, membership also includes the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. Pobal is also represented in the membership of the group due to its administration of some measures on behalf of Departments and with a view to having it act as a link to the community groups which often utilise dormant accounts moneys.
I am informed that the first meeting of the group covered a range of issues, in particular information management and the development of guidance documents around how the fund should operate. The next meeting of the group is planned for April 2019 which will allow the group to inform the preparation of the 2019 dormant accounts action plan. This group will play an important role in supporting the implementation of the recommendations in the review and ensuring that the available funds are utilised for measures targeting disadvantage.