Thursday, 25 May 1972
Dáil Eireann Debate
Minister for Posts and Telegraphs (Mr. G. Collins): There are about 250 applications for telephones awaiting attention in the area in question. Arrangements have already been made to provide service for 80 of these. It is expected that terms will be quoted to a further 30 or 40 within the next few months. Virtually all the remainder should be attended to before the end of this year or early next year.
Mr. G. Collins: I am afraid the Deputy may not, much as I would like him to, for the simple reason that, when we have cleared the list of waiting applicants by the end of the year, I am sure there will be as many more again waiting for telephones. New applications are coming in all the time.
Mr. Creed: asked the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs under what circumstances an applicant for a private telephone can qualify for immediate installation; and the reason why other applicants are left waiting for long periods.
Mr. G. Collins: In areas where the plant and staff position is favourable applications for telephones are dealt with on receipt. In other areas the delay varies in relation to the time required to remedy underground, exchange or other plant shortages and the volume of engineering work to be attended to in the area. Exceptionally special steps are taken to provide service promptly wherever practicable for priority categories such as doctors, clergymen, removing subscribers, et cetera.
The basic reason for the delay is that it has not proved possible with the resources of capital and staff available to my Department to achieve the expansion of the telephone system necessary to keep pace fully with the extremely heavy demand experienced in many areas in recent years.
Mr. Clinton: asked the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs if, in view of the rapid increase in population in the area, he will make arrangements to provide a public telephone kiosk at Coolmine, Blanchardstown, County Dublin.
Mr. G. Collins: Provision of a kiosk at Broadway was not warranted in the past by reference to the use being made of the call office telephone in the local post office. In the past year there has been a significant increase in the number of calls made from the call office telephone and it is planned to replace it by a kiosk during the current financial year.
Mr. Dunne: asked the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs if he will now have a telephone kiosk provided at Connolly Park, Nenagh, County Tipperary, in view of the further housing development in the area.
Mr. G. Collins: The area in question is regarded as adequately served by existing kiosks at Pearse Street and St. Flannan's Street. The provision of additional public telephone facilities in the area is not considered warranted at present.
Mr. Donnellan: asked the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs if he is aware that there is no public telephone between Tuam and Athenry, County Galway, a distance of 16 miles; and if he will consider providing a public telephone at Laragh, Ballyglunin, Tuam, for the convenience of people in that area.
Mr. G. Collins: There are four public telephones in the area referred to in the first part of the Deputy's question. As regards the second part of his question the position is that provision of kiosks in areas such as Laragh, where there is no post office, is not envisaged under the extended kiosk programme for rural areas.
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