Written Answers - Decentralisation Programme.

Wednesday, 24 May 2006

Dáil Eireann Debate
Vol. 620 No. 50

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  64.  Mr. Ring  Information on Michael Ring  Zoom on Michael Ring   asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs  Information on Dermot Ahern  Zoom on Dermot Ahern   the number of development specialists, currently working with Irish Aid, volunteering to decentralise; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19576/06]

  134.  Mr. O’Dowd  Information on Fergus O'Dowd  Zoom on Fergus O'Dowd   asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs  Information on Dermot Ahern  Zoom on Dermot Ahern   the number of senior development specialists, currently working with Irish Aid, volunteering to decentralise; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19575/06]

  146.  Mr. Naughten  Information on Denis Naughten  Zoom on Denis Naughten   asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs  Information on Dermot Ahern  Zoom on Dermot Ahern   the number of principal development specialists, currently working with Irish Aid, volunteering to decentralise; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19574/06]

Minister of State at the Department of Foreign Affairs (Mr. C. Lenihan): Information on Conor Lenihan  Zoom on Conor Lenihan  I propose to take Questions Nos. 64, 134 and 146 together.

There are 3 categories of Specialists employed by Irish Aid: Principal Development Specialists, Senior Development Specialists, and Development Specialists.

Three Principal Development Specialists serve in Irish Aid headquarters in Dublin. None of the three has applied to decentralise to Limerick.

There are twelve Senior Development Specialists in Irish Aid headquarters. None of the twelve has applied to decentralise to Limerick. Two Senior Development Specialists originally applied to decentralise to Limerick, but subsequently withdrew their applications.

Finally, there are nine Development Specialist posts in headquarters. Five Development Specialists are scheduled to decentralise. Of these, four commenced employment since the announcement of the decentralisation programme in December 2003, and one applied via the Central Applications Facility.

Discussions are ongoing with representatives of the Specialists, with their union IMPACT, and with the Department of Finance about the issues involved in decentralisation which also, of course, have a wider Civil Service dimension. It would be my hope that a greater number of Specialists will, in time, volunteer to decentralise to Limerick.


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