Written answers

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Department of Environment, Community and Local Government

Local Authority Staff Recruitment

Photo of Sandra McLellanSandra McLellan (Cork East, Sinn Fein)
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420. To ask the Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government if he will lift the recruitment embargo in Cork County Council to allow them to hire outdoor staff as since the embargo was put in place in 2008 Cork County Council have lost a total of 893 staff and front line services have been severely affected with the loss of one third of outdoor staff; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46940/14]

Photo of Alan KellyAlan Kelly (Tipperary North, Labour)
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The moratorium on recruitment and promotion in the public service was introduced in March 2009 in response to the financial crisis. My Department operates a delegated sanction from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform for implementation of the moratorium in relation to local authorities, and any exceptions to the moratorium in local authorities require sanction from my Department.

Under section 159 of the Local Government Act 2001, each Chief Executive is responsible for staffing and organisational arrangements necessary for carrying out the functions of the local authorities for which he or she is responsible. In this regard, it is a matter for each Chief Executive, in the first instance, to ensure that the moratorium is implemented while the appropriate service levels are maintained.

My Department works closely with Cork County Council in relation to the Council’s overall staffing requirements. The Council’s staffing requests are examined on a case by case basis having due regard to the continued delivery of key services in the context of staffing and budgetary constraints. In considering sanction requests public safety, maintaining key front line services, and economic issues are given precedence.

As announced in the Budget, it is proposed that with effect from 2015, the moratorium and the Employment Control Framework for the Public Service will be lifted but recruitment or promotion will be subject to adherence to binding 3 year pay ceilings. Staffing resources must be managed within these overall ceilings. Detailed arrangements in terms of the local authority sector will be worked out between my Department and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.


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