I propose to take Questions Nos. 241, 242 and 243 together.
I refer to the reply to Questions Nos. 368, 369 and 370 on 11 May 2021 which clarified that, in a legal transaction and conveyancing managed by the Chief State Solicitor’s Office, the freehold ownership of these buildings was acquired by the State from the previous owner in 2015. It was also clarified that the acquisition and conveyance of freehold title had not been subject to any encumbrance, leasehold interest or title burden and that no lease of any description had been entered into in the meantime. The acquisition was facilitated by NAMA and the consideration involved amounted to €4m. This has long been a matter of public record.
Any transaction of this scale involving State bodies, by definition, engages a significant number of officials including the Minister and senior officials. It would not accord with parliamentary convention and practice to name the many personnel involved in this transaction in the Chief State Solicitor's Office, the Attorney General's Office, the then Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and NAMA.
In its recently completed final report, the Moore Street Advisory Group (MSAG) has, as one its key recommendations, endorsed the proposals put forward by the Irish Heritage Trust for the conservation and presentation of the national monument buildings and the creation of new visitor and reception facilities to the rear. These proposals, which will be fully considered by my Department and the Office of Public Works in determining the best solution for the national monument, are to be published on the Department’s website, along with the MSAG report itself.