Wednesday, 29 January 1997
Dáil Éireann Debate
146. Miss Harney asked the Minister for Justice the plans, if any, she has to ensure that small public service vehicle badges are not issued without sufficient scrutiny and regard to the statutory requirements as laid down by the Department of the Environment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [2463/97]
Minister for Justice (Mrs. Owen): I presume the Deputy is referring to the issue of drivers' licences by the Garda authorities for small public service vehicles and not the licensing of these vehicles.
The Road Traffic (Public Service Vehicles) Amendment Regulations 1995 (S.I. No. 136 of  1995) which came into force on 1 September 1995, provided for the transfer of the function of licensing of these vehicles from the Garda authorities to local authorities. The Garda authorities, however, retained the function of the licensing of the drivers of small public service vehicles.
The Garda authorities have informed me that applications for such licences are processed by them in accordance with the Road Traffic (Public Service Vehicles) Regulations, 1963, as amended. Applications are not approved unless the applicant satisfies the Garda authorities that he is not engaged in any occupation which, in the opinion of the Commissioner, is likely to impair his efficiency or to conflict with his responsibilities or to be incompatible with his employment as a driver of a small public service vehicle.
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