Tuesday, 25 January 2022
Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
253. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the number of civilian and Garda Ministerial drivers in his current corps of drivers; the breakdown of the civilian versus Garda drivers; and the total costs including salaries, maintenance, fuel and other costs incurred by the driver corps in 2020 and 2021. [3119/22]
As the Deputy may be aware, following a recent security review by Garda Commissioner Harris, it has been agreed to provide 2 Garda drivers to me. As I currently have 1 civilian driver assigned to me, interim arrangements are in place while the full plans are being mapped out.
The aggregate total of salary and employer’s PRSI costs for civilian drivers in my department overall, including the Ministers of the State and the previous Minister and the previous Ministers of State, were €138,216 in 2020 and €111,898 in 2021. The Deputy will be aware that there was a change of government in 2020. There were no costs in relation to Garda drivers in 2020 or 2021.
Ministers may claim mileage rates in line with relevant circulars. The rates include provision for maintenance, depreciation and fuel. The aggregate total claimed by Ministers and Ministers of State was €15,327 in mileage in 2020 and €10,974 in mileage in 2021.
Subsistence claimed by civilian drivers in 2020 was €7,001 and €18,271 in 2021.
254. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the type of contract that is issued to civilian drivers; and the way in which they are redeployed and or made redundant in the event that they are replaced on issues of national security. [3120/22]
The process approved by Government for the appointment of Civilian Drivers to Ministers and Ministers of State is set out in the Instructions to HR Managers – Ministerial Appointments for the 33rdDáilthat is published on gov.ie. Civilian Drivers are appointed on a temporary basis by the relevant Department for a period co-terminus with the relevant officeholder or for other stated reasons. This is reflected in the Contract of Employment that issues to Civilian Drivers, a template for which is included at Appendix 9 in the referenced Instructions to HR Managers.
It would be a matter for Government to initially consider the impacts of any prospective recommendation to vary the current Civilian Driver arrangements. I can confirm that these matters are under review.