Wednesday, 20 May 2020
Department of Justice and Equality
478. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality if a new contract to supply new marked Garda vans has recently been put out to tender; if so, when new Garda vans will come into the fleet; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6521/20]
In accordance with the Garda Síochána Act 2005 as amended, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for managing and controlling the administration and business of An Garda Síochána. In addition, the allocation of Garda resources is a matter for the Commissioner, in light of identified operational demands. This includes responsibility for the allocation of Garda vehicles among the various Garda divisions. As Minister, I have no role in these matters. I am assured, however, that Garda management keeps the distribution of resources under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities, to ensure their optimum use.
Significant capital investment is being made in An Garda Síochána, including a total of €46 million specifically for the Garda fleet between 2016 and 2021. Of this investment, a total of €9 million has been made available for purchase and fit-out of additional Garda vehicles in 2020. This continuing investment is intended to ensure that An Garda Síochána has a modern, effective and fit-for-purpose fleet and that Gardaí can be mobile, visible and responsive on the roads and in the community to prevent and tackle crime.
I am informed by the Garda authorities that all vehicle tenders and contract for Garda Vehicles are handled through the Office of Government Procurement (OGP). I have no role in these matters as Minister.
I am informed that mini-competitions have been issued to the market for vans and that, due to Covid-19 and subsequent requests from suppliers, the closing date in that case was extended to mid-June. I am informed, and the Deputy will appreciate, that the timeline for completion of this process and provision of vehicles is dependent on the market’s ability to respond to tenders and the supply of vehicles in light of the Covid-19 global pandemic.
In that regard it may be of interest to the Deputy to know that, in order to protect the ongoing availability of vehicles and in anticipation of impacts of public health restrictions on motor factory or fit-out workplaces, 94 additional vehicles were purchased by the Garda authorities in March 2020 at a cost of €2.4m. The fit-out cost of these vehicles was €600,000. I am further advised that 210 hired vehicles have been allocated nationwide at this time, at a monthly hire cost €45,545, excluding fuel and other costs.