Dáil Éireann - Volume 620 - 30 May, 2006

Written Answers. - Departmental Bodies.

Mr. Naughten asked the Taoiseach the public bodies under the control of his Department; their function, role, location and establishment date; the administration costs of each body in the year 2005; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20464/06]

  The Taoiseach: Central Statistics Office The function of the Central Statistics Office (CSO) is to collect, compile, analyse and disseminate statistical information relating to the economic, social and general activities and conditions in the State. It is also responsible for co-ordinating official statistics produced by other public authorities and for developing the statistical potential of administrative records.

[1189] The CSO has offices in Cork, Dublin and Swords as follows:

Central Statistics Office, Skehard Road, Cork.

Central Statistics Office, Ardee Road, Rathmines, Dublin 6.

CSO Census Centre, Unit 4D, Swords Business Campus, Balheary Road, Co. Dublin.

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) was established in 1949 and is an independent Office under the aegis of the Department of the Taoiseach. The CSO gross expenditure (provisional out-turn) for 2005 was €46,578,000. The final out-turn for 2005 will be available on publication of the Appropriation Account for 2005.

National Statistics Board

The function and role of the National Statistics Board is to establish priorities for the compilation and development of official statistics; to assess the human, financial and equipment resources to be made available for the compilation of official statistics and to arbitrate on any conflicts which may arise with other public authorities on the extraction of statistics from records or the co-ordination of statistical activities.

The National Statistics Board is located in Ardee Road, Dublin 6. It was initially set up on a non-statutory basis in 1986 and was established on a statutory basis in November 1994 when the Statistics Act, 1993 came into operation. Its gross expenditure for 2005 was €51,328 (of which €48,989 was in relation to stipend fees).

Law Reform Commission

The function of the Commission is to keep the law under review and in accordance with the provisions of the Law Reform Commission Act, 1975 undertake examinations and conduct research with a view to reforming the law and formulate proposals for law reform.

The role of the Commission is to keep the law under independent, impartial and expert review and to make consequent recommendations for law reform. The location of the Commission is 35-39 Shelbourne Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4. It was established on 20 October, 1975. The Administration cost for 2005 was €2,171,170. This will be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor General.

All-Party Oireachtas Committee on the Constitution

The function of the All-Party Oireachtas Committee (APOCC) on the Constitution is to act as an informal Oireachtas Committee. It is funded from the Vote of the Department of the Taoiseach. Its terms of reference charge it with a full review of the Constitution, having regard to the Report of the Constitution Review Group.

The location of the Committee’s Secretariat is Phoenix House, 7-9 South Leinster Street, Dublin [1190] 2. Following the election of the Twenty-Ninth Dáil and Seanad in May 2002, the present committee, chaired by Denis O’Donovan T.D., was re-constituted by the Taoiseach with the concurrence of the leaders of the political parties and the independent members.

The total costs for the Committee for the year 2005 was €338,639.38. The sum of €164,725.80 related to pay costs. Administration costs amounted to €173,913.58, of which €35,107.50 related to the publication of the Committee’s Tenth Progress Report: The Family. The balance of €138,806.08 related to normal administration costs such as IT services, telephone, fax and internet charges, electricity, publications and office machinery.

National Economic and Social Development Office

The National Economic and Social Development Office Bill, 2002, which has passed all stages in the Dáil and is due in Committee Stage in the Seanad tomorrow (Wednesday, 31 May, 2006), establishes the National Economic and Social Development Office (NESDO), comprising three bodies, the National Economic and Social Council (NESC), the National Economic and Social Forum (NESF) and the National Centre for Partnership and Performance (NCPP).

NESDO and its three constituent bodies have been in existence and operating on a non-statutory basis for various lengths of time. The Bill when enacted will place them on a statutory basis for the first time. The Bill provides that the Taoiseach may by order appoint a day to be the Establishment Day for the purposes of the Act. This will be the date when all the provisions of the Bill, when enacted, will come into force.

The National Economic and Social Council was established in 1974, the National Economic and Social Forum in 1993 and the National Centre for Partnership and Performance in 2001. The NCPP is the successor to the National Centre for Partnership and arose from the commitment in the Programme for Prosperity and Fairness that it would be located with the NESC and the NESF, within the National Economic and Social Development Office, where it would work with IBEC and ICTU in supporting the deepening of partnership. The functions of the Bodies are as follows:

National Economic and Social Development Office

To advise the Taoiseach on all strategic matters relevant to economic and social development in the State by facilitating and promoting complementary programmes of research, analysis and discussions by the NESC, NESF and the NCPP; providing shared administration and support services for the NESC, NESF and the NCPP; submitting to the Government any reports, recommendations or conclusions of the NESC, NESF [1191] and the NCPP which may arise from any research, survey or study carried out by such a Body, and arranging for the publication of such reports, recommendations or conclusions of such Body.

National Economic and Social Council

To analyse and report to the Taoiseach on strategic issues relating to the efficient development of the economy and the achievement of social justice and the development of a strategic framework for the conduct of relations and the negotiation of agreements between the Government and the social partners.

National Economic and Social Forum

To monitor and analyse the implementation of specific measures and programmes identified in the context of social partnership arrangements, especially those concerned with the achievement of equality and social inclusion and to facilitate public consultation on policy matters referred to it by the Government from time to time.

National Centre for Partnership and Performance

To support and facilitate organisational change and innovation based on partnership in order to bring about improved performance and mutual gain, and to contribute to national competitiveness, better public services, higher living standards, a better quality of life and the development of the workplace of the future. To advise the Taoiseach on such matters relating to the deepening of workplace partnership in the public and private sectors as he or she may, from time to time, specify.

NESDO and its constituent bodies are located at 16 Parnell Square, Dublin 1. The provisional outturn for 2005 for these bodies is as follows:

NESDO €1.064 million; NESC €0.79 million;

NESF €0.689 million; NCPP €1.041 million.

Information Society Commission

The Information Society Commission was established as an independent advisory body to Government. The first Commission’s term of office was from May 1997 to December 2000, the second Commission ran from November 2003 to December 2004. The Secretariats of the respective Information Society Commissions were located at the Department of the Taoiseach, Upper Merrion Street, Dublin 2 and at 2-4 Merrion Row, Dublin 2. The amount spent in respect of the Information Society Commission for the year 2005 was €333,900.