Dáil debates

Thursday, 28 January 2016

12:55 pm

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour) | Oireachtas source

I have taken a very close interest in the adoption (information and tracing) Bill on a personal basis and I am sorry there has not been enough time to bring forward the legislation. The Minister, Deputy James Reilly, has been working very hard to bring the legislation before the Dáil. There are a small number of outstanding issues on which he has not yet reached a decision. Unfortunately, we will not have it in the lifetime of this Dáil. However, I hope and anticipate it will be a priority for the next Dáil immediately on its resumption.

The wind energy guidelines are still being worked on by officials in the two Departments concerned.

My Department has assisted more than 400 households and paid out approximately €500,000 to families affected by flooding. If the Deputy has particular cases, he might make them known to me or to the Minister of State, Deputy Kevin Humphreys. We have made payments to quite a few families who have incurred expenses related to the hire of pumps and other equipment. The Deputy could contact the regional official in charge of the midlands, whom the Deputy knows well.

In the context of the Deputy's other occupation, I am happy to say that, today, the managing director of An Post and I signed the new contract for the renewal of the cash contract to post offices which pay out cash in social welfare payments. The value of the contract last year was €54 million.

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