Thursday, 4 July 2019

Ceisteanna (376, 377, 378, 380)

Jackie Cahill

Ceist:

376. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the annual operational costs for the Dublin Regional Vet Laboratory in Backweston; the annual salary bill by grade; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28798/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Jackie Cahill

Ceist:

377. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the number of carcasses submitted to the Dublin Regional Veterinary Laboratory in each of the years 2015 to 2018 and to date in 2019, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28799/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Jackie Cahill

Ceist:

378. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the number of carcasses diverted each year to the Kilkenny RVL from the Dublin Regional Veterinary Laboratory; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28800/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Jackie Cahill

Ceist:

380. Deputy Jackie Cahill asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine the number of full driving allowances which apply to staff in the Dublin Regional Veterinary Laboratory at Backweston Campus; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [28802/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Agriculture)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 376 to 378, inclusive, and 380 together.

As part of the strategic re-development of the Department's Laboratories, the Dublin RVL is now primarily focused on providing diagnostic and investigative services to the pig and poultry sectors, including post-mortem examination. The staff resources available for this work is a Senior Research Officer with an annual salary of €98k, a Research Officer with an annual salary of €76k and two laboratory attendants with an average annual salary of €28k each. None of these staff are in receipt of a driving allowance.

The operational cost, excluding salaries and overheads, for Pathology Division of which Dublin RVL is a component but which also includes clinical microbiology, histopathology, the TSE National Reference Laboratory, biochemistry and toxicology is approximately €500k per annum. This relates specifically to the supply of laboratory consumables, equipment maintenance and proficiency testing.

Since 2017, farmers from Dublin and surrounding counties who contact the Department seeking to book in ruminant carcases for post-mortem examination have been advised to avail of the services provided by either Kilkenny or Athlone RVLs. However, it should be noted that over that time, while Dublin RVL has focussed on providing a diagnostic service to the pig and poultry sectors, no farmers who have presented themselves at Backweston have been turned away or refused a service.

Details of the number of carcasses submitted to Dublin RVL (Backweston) from 2015 to date is provided in the table:

Year

Number of carcasses submitted at Backweston laboratories

2019 to date

246

2018

629

2017

1,072

2016

1,700

2015

1,803