Thursday, 1 April 2021
Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport
Local Authority Staff
48. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if approval has been given formally to local authorities to hire additional staff as part of the Sustainable Transport Initiative; if the terms of conditions and salaries under which such staff may be hired have been agreed; the number of such staff hired to date by local authority; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [17849/21]
As Minister for Transport, I have responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to public and sustainable transport. The National Transport Authority (NTA) has responsibility for the planning and development of public transport infrastructure, including resourcing.
As the Deputy is aware, my Department announced funding in January for up to 248 new jobs in local authorities around the country to expand walking and cycling facilities all over the country. This increase in resourcing reflects the significantly increased funding of €1.8bn for walking and cycling over the planned lifetime of the Government. The additional staff will be dedicated to delivering and promoting active travel in Ireland and will work across design, communication, community liaison and construction oversight.
The NTA has developed a five year walking and cycling infrastructure delivery plan, including consideration of necessary institutional arrangements and resource requirements needed to ensure delivery of the active travel infrastructure programme. It is my understanding that the NTA are currently in the process of contacting local authorities to advise them of the number of resources authorised for funding under this plan and the terms and conditions involved.
In relation to the number of staff hired to date, I have referred this aspect of the query to the NTA. If you don't receive a response within 10 working days, please contact my private office directly.