Tuesday, 6 July 2021
Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport
153. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the rationale for plans to empower him to revoke a driving licence (details supplied) from a person seeking international protection under the Road Traffic Bill 2021; and the engagements he has had with the Courts Service and the Road Safety Authority in this regard. [36311/21]
As set out in the Programme for Government, the Government will act on interim recommendations from the Chair of the Expert Group on the Provision of Support, Including Accommodation, to Persons in the International Protection Process (Asylum Seekers) to improve conditions for asylum seekers in Ireland. This includes the ability to apply for driving licences.
A person must be resident in Ireland to apply for an Irish learner permit or driving licence. An international protection applicant is granted temporary residency while their application to remain is considered. In consulting the European Commission, my department was advised that a mechanism for revocation is required, should a licence holder cease to be resident in the State.
Officials in my Department are examining the operational and legislative amendments required to allow a person with temporary residency to have access to the driving licensing system and are working with colleagues in the Road Safety Authority, the Department of Justice and the Attorney General's Office on this matter.
154. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if his attention has been drawn to past or present delays in the application of penalty points being put on driving licences; the cause of these delays; the number of these delays there has been in each of the years 2018 to 2020 and to date in 2021; the procedure and policy for such an instance; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [36409/21]
Penalty Points records are processed on the National Vehicle and Driver File (NVDF) without delay by my Department on receipt of the details from An Garda Síochána and The Courts Service.
Although penalty points are applied immediately to the offending driver record, the penalty point duration period is suspended in certain circumstances according to legislation, for instance when the driver’s license has expired and has not been renewed at the time of the offence or where the driver is serving a disqualification for a separate offence.
Without your constituent's driver number, it is difficult for my officials to clarify the circumstances of this particular case. They may wish to contact my Department's office in Shannon should they wish to discuss the matter further.