Thursday, 12 December 2019

Ceisteanna (115)

Paul Kehoe

Ceist:

115. Deputy Paul Kehoe asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of personnel in An Garda Síochána by rank and vehicles by type and division in the force in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [52367/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Justice)

It is important to be clear that under the Garda Síochána Act 2005 as amended, the Garda Commissioner has responsibility for management of An Garda Síochána and for the allocation and efficient use of Garda resources. This includes responsibility for personnel matters and the distribution of personnel and resources including Garda vehicles across the various Garda Divisions. As Minister I have no direct role in these matters. I understand however that Garda management keeps the distribution of resources under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities, to ensure their optimum use.

A record €1.76 billion was allocated to the Garda Vote for 2019 and this is increasing further to an unprecedented €1.882 billion for 2020. Significant capital investment is also being made, amounting to a total of €92 million this year and rising further to over €116 million in 2020.

This level of funding is enabling sustained, ongoing recruitment of Garda members and staff and as a result, An Garda Síochána is a growing organisation. We now have approximately 14,300 Gardaí nationwide, supported by over 2,900 Garda staff. And these numbers are growing, as part of the Government’s plan to achieve an overall Garda workforce of 21,000 personnel by 2021.

I understand from the details supplied that the Deputy is interested in the fleet and personnel in Wexford for the years 2016-2019.

Details in relation to the number of Gardaí deployed to all Garda Divisions is available on my Department’s website. This information is updated every month with the latest data provided by An Garda Síochána. This information is available at the following link:

http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/002_Garda_Numbers_by_Division_District_and_Station_2009_to_October_2019.xlsx/Files/002_Garda_Numbers_by_Division_District_and_Station_2009_to_October_2019.xlsx

I am informed by the Garda authorities that as of 30 November 2019 there were 321 Gardaí assigned to the Wexford Division. This represents a significant increase of 66 Gardaí in the Division since the end of 2015, a 25% increase over the past four years. I am informed that these Gardaí are supported by 39 Garda staff, which again represents a significant increase of 11 Garda staff since the end of 2015. This increase in Garda staff numbers supports the redeployment of Gardaí from administrative to operational policing duties, where their training and expertise can be used to best effect. Taken together, this increase in Garda and civilian staff numbers means a significant increase in operational policing hours in Wexford in recent years.

Information on Garda staff is also available at the following link:

http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/Garda_Staff

For more information on the Garda Workforce as well as general information on Garda facts and figures, the Deputy may also wish to see the information on the links below:

http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/Garda_Workforce

http://www.justice.ie/en/JELR/Pages/An_Garda_Siochana_facts_and_figures

In relation to the Garda fleet, I would first point out that the very significant capital investment is being made in An Garda Síochána includes a total of €46 million for the Garda fleet between 2016 and 2021. I understand from the Garda authorities that this year's capital allocation of €10 million for the Garda fleet is being used for purchase and fit-out of over 300 new vehicles for operational use this year. I have recently announced that a further €1 million for the fleet will be included in the additional funding which will be provided to An Garda Síochána before the end of the year. €9 million capital funding has been allocated for the Garda fleet in Budget 2020.

This continuing investment is intended to ensure that An Garda Síochána has a modern, effective and fit-for-purpose fleet and that Gardaí can be mobile, visible and responsive on the roads and in the community to prevent and tackle crime.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that number and type of Garda vehicles assigned to the Wexford Division requested by the Deputy for the years 2016-2019 is set out in the following table.

Year

Cars

Vans

Motorcycles

4X4

Other

Total

2019 (as at 21 November)

48

11

1

2

0

62

2018

49

12

2

3

0

66

2017

50

10

1

1

0

62

2016

48

10

2

1

0

61

*The category 'others' refers to MPV, SUV, Minibus or Prisoner Conveyance Vehicles.