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Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health: Update on Sláintecare: Department of Health (9 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I want to move on to the issue of sites. I understand that there has been a consultation on sites. However, is it not also the case that the HSE already has a number of existing sites? What level of engagement has there been with the South/Southwest Hospital Group about using the sites that are there already?

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health: Update on Sláintecare: Department of Health (9 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I want to return to the beds issue. Taking the two voluntary hospitals in County Cork, the Mercy Hospital and the South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital, the South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital has been there since 1756. The Mercy Hospital was established in 1857. Therefore, the two hospitals are facing many challenges in trying to meet updated requirements. Particularly...

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health: Update on Sláintecare: Department of Health (9 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: The South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital is just doing elective surgery. There is a huge level of co-operation between the CUH, the Mercy Hospital and the South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital. I am not sure that any further merger between the Mercy and the South Infirmary Victoria University hospitals will gain any extra capacity.

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health: Update on Sláintecare: Department of Health (9 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: Does Ms Magahy then accept that the elective hospital should also have inpatient beds?

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health: Update on Sláintecare: Department of Health (9 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: But there will not be any inpatient beds available in the immediate future?

Joint Oireachtas Committee on Health: Update on Sláintecare: Department of Health (9 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: Does Ms Magahy still accept that anyone with an underlying condition will not be able to have surgery in these centres? Someone who has diabetes will not be a suitable candidate for a centre like this.

Mental Health During and Post Covid-19: Statements (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I thank the Minister of State for the work she and her Department are doing in dealing with the whole challenge around mental health services. It is important to pay tribute to all the staff in all our facilities in the State for their dedication and commitment during this particularly difficult time due to Covid-19, and their ongoing work in dealing with the new demands. We are coming...

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I fully accept that people are in difficult circumstances but surely we need to have details of the breakdown of the arrears. Are the moneys owing for two months, three months, six months or two years? Perhaps it would be appropriate to let the committee have a breakdown of how far back some of these arrears go.

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: Okay. I refer to the timeframe from when a local authority identifies a site and makes a submission to the Department for housing. For instance, I am aware of a situation where a local authority secured approval for approximately five housing projects to proceed. When it received tenders for the building of the houses, the tenders were far higher than anticipated, but then there was a...

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I will start with the response of Mr. Lemass on the RTB. I received a report from the RTB in the past two weeks which sets out the number of cases in which it has taken prosecutions. In 2017, it prosecuted a total of 29 landlords in the entire country. Last year, that number has fallen to ten landlords for the entire country. As such, I am not clear about the RTB in terms of...

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: If a member of the public reports that a property is not registered - one can check whether a property is registered on the RTB register - and files a complaint, there is no reference number and he or she cannot check whether the matter is being following up or whether the property is registered. People have to go through the whole process all over again. Likewise, when I wrote to the RTB...

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: In 2018, there were, I understand, more than 7,000 first or second notifications to landlords. The following year, there were only 1,100 notifications issued to landlords. There was a substantial drop in the level of notification to landlords for non-registration. In an area of my constituency, 60% of the properties that are let are not registered. That raises serious questions. I ask...

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I will move on to the issue of the non-collection of rents by local authorities. Recently, I saw that in one local authority more than €33 million is owed in rent arrears. Is the Department aware of the total figure for rent arrears in each local authority? What is the total amount? Can we have details for each of the local authorities?

Public Accounts Committee: Vote 34 - Housing, Planning and Local Government (resumed) (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: Does the Department accept that one local authority is owed €33 million? There must be a breakdown in the system if there is that extent of arrears in one local authority.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Flexible Work Practices (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: 15. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the status of the national remote work strategy; the details of the implementation of the strategy; the progress being made to ensure that remote working will be a viable option post-Covid-19; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30177/21]

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Flexible Work Practices (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: My question is in relation to the status of the national remote work strategy, the details of the implementation of the strategy and the progress being made to ensure that remote working will be a viable option post-Covid-19.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Flexible Work Practices (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: I raise the issue of remote working. We now have a problem where we have new housing estates being built where we do not have connection to broadband for anything up to 12 months after estates are completed, and in some cases up to two to three years. If we are talking about remote working then surely when building estates we should be looking to have broadband connected at the same time as...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Flexible Work Practices (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: The issue raises the assignment of the postal code. Why does it take so much time to have a postal code assigned? Broadband will not be connected until there is a postal code assigned and the postal code is not assigned until the person physically moves into the house. Postal codes should be assigned before houses are completed. It is a simple matter to do. Once someone has signed a...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Flexible Work Practices (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: If we want to have remote working, then we must have all of the boxes ticked so that we can facilitate it in the fastest possible timeframe. I would urge that these technicalities would be resolved. They can be resolved.

Written Answers — Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment: Brexit Supports (3 Jun 2021)

Colm Burke: 80. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the status of the new Brexit impact loan scheme; when the scheme is expected to be launched; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30178/21]

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