Tuesday, 7 February 2012
Dáil Éireann Debate
78. Deputy Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the cost to him of the Garda presence at Bellanaboy Shell refinery, County Mayo, each year since 2006; the cost to date with a breakdown of the Garda ranks, the salaries paid including basic salary, overtime, transfer allowance and so on; the projected costs of this exercise; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6541/12]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I am informed by the Garda authorities that the additional costs arising for the Gardaí from the policing operation of the Shell Refinery project at Bellanaboy from 2006 to December 2011 is €14,566,262. I am enclosing a detailed breakdown of the figures as a tabular statement with this reply. The figures do not include the basic salaries as these are incurred in the normal course as part of Garda rostered hours. It is not possible to further break down the figures into the various ranks without the disproportionate expenditure of Garda time and resources relative to the information sought.
I am further advised by the Garda authorities that they are not in a position to provide projected costs in relation to future policing operations at the Shell Refinery. Those operations arise from the need for the Gardaí to respond to protest action in the vicinity of the gas terminal in order to prevent public order offences, to enable persons to go unimpeded to and from their place of work and to enable the construction of the refinery and pipeline to be completed. The level of protest activity fluctuates and as such a projection of likely costs is not possible.
It is deeply regrettable that so much Garda resources have to be tied up at the North Mayo site. However this is absolutely necessary in view of the actions of some of the protestors — many of whom are not from the area and who engage in a form of protest tourism — who have engaged in acts of public disorder as well as damage to property. Such action cannot be tolerated and the Garda presence is there to prevent it.
The House will appreciate that, at a time when many people are under severe financial pressure because of our very difficult economic circumstances, it is scandalous that some protesters behave in a self indulgent way that has no regard for the rights of others. In turn, this requires the expenditure of a substantial amount of taxpayers’ money which could be devoted to far better purposes if it was not for the actions of many of those involved in the protests. In addition, this type of behaviour runs completely contrary to the public and national interest and furthermore will act as a disincentive to inward investment and the development of our national resources. An Garda Síochána have my full support in taking all necessary action within the law to deal with their activities.
|Overtime and Allowances||923,574||2,693,706||2,206,333||2,539,352||315,400||449,084||9,127,449|
|Travel and subsistence||410,857||1,999,970||846,851||737,031||246,279||416,403||4,657,391|
79. Deputy Mary Lou McDonald asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the amount of the 2012 capital allocation to the Irish Prison Service that will be spent specifically on improving conditions at Cork prison; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6538/12]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Alan Shatter): I can advise the Deputy that the Irish Prison Service is in the process of drafting a new Strategic Plan 2012-2014 which will be presented to me, by the Director General, in the first week of April. The Irish Prison Service is also preparing a 40 month Capital Expenditure Plan which will form a central part of this Strategic Plan.While it is not possible at this time to be specific on the funding for use in respect of Cork prison, I can advise the Deputy that as part of this process, a plan has been drafted by the Irish Prison Service to address the issues of lack of in cell sanitation and inadequate physical infrastructure in the prison. That plan is currently being considered and an announcement will be made in due course.
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