Month: June 2018

Community groups and schools in Limerick County to benefit from €234,660 in CLÁR 1 funding – O’Donovan

Added June 29th, 2018

Limerick TD and local Minister, Patrick O’Donovan has this morning welcomed the news that 10 community groups and schools in County Limerick are to benefit from €234,660 in new Government funding through the CLÁR programme. The announcement was made by the Minister for Rural & Community Development, Michael Ring TD.

“The latest round of funding under the Clár Programme is being allocated for safety measures in schools and community groups. 10 schools and community groups in County Limerick are receiving funding and those that were successful are:

Bulgaden NS €28,125, Meenkilly NS €15,840, Doon Girls NS €30,000, Athea NS €15,840, Kilbehenny NS €31,050, Mountcollins NS €1,980, Oola Community Council/Village & School €29,700, Raheenagh NS €29,700, Knockadea NS €28,125 and Ashford NS €24,300.

“Having worked with a number of these community groups and schools, this is great news for them, this funding will allow for the installation of safety measures such as pedestrian crossings, flashing lights and speed indicators in villages and adjacent to schools and community facilities.

“Through the Clár Programme and other supports under the Action Plan of Rural Development, such as the Rural Recreation programme and the Town and Village Renewal Scheme, Fine Gael will continue working hard to support the economic and social development of communities in rural Ireland.”

“Minister Ring has also informed me that he hopes to make a further announcement next week in relation to Measures 2 and 3 under Clár”.

O’Donovan welcomes appointment of contractor to Croom School

Added June 13th, 2018

Limerick TD and local Minister, Patrick O’Donovan has said he is delighted with the news that a contractor has been appointed for the construction of the new secondary school in Croom, and that work will commence shortly.

“Today I have been informed that MMD Construction have been appointed to construct the new replacement second level school for Colaiste Chiarain in Croom. Over the last few years I, together with my colleague Cllr Stephen Keary, have worked tirelessly with; the Minister for Education,  the Education and Training Board, parents representatives and others to try to secure this development for Croom. During that time there has been many disappointments and setbacks. However we stuck at it because we wanted to be able to deliver a new state of the art school for Croom. And today the hard work has paid off. This is great news for Croom and the surrounding areas, but it is particularly good news for the students, parents and staff who will have the pleasure of being part of a new school.”

“This new school for Croom will be built to accommodate 800 students when it is finished. It is just one of a number of new school projects that we have and are delivering since we entered Government. Across the county in places like Doon, Abbeyfeale, Kilmallock and Newcastle West we have made substantial investments in our second level schools. Other secondary schools have also received funding for refurbishment and we have also provided significant resources for primary schools across Limerick including new schools, extensions and refurbishments.”

“I am thrilled with today’s news. I look forward to the commencement date of the construction which I understand will be in the coming weeks and to the start of a new chapter in the story of second level education in Croom.”

O’Donovan welcomes news on 2018 Sports Capital Programme

Added June 13th, 2018

Limerick TD and Minister of State, Patrick O’Donovan has welcomed confirmation he has received that the 2018 Sports Capital Programme is to open early in July.

“I spoke to Minister Brendan Griffin on this issue recently. I was the Minister of Sport who opened the last round of the Sports Capital Programme and I could see at first hand the importance of the programme. I advocated strongly for another round in 2018 and I’m glad now that the decision has been made.”

“Minister Griffin confirmed to me that he expects that a €40million fund will be put in place and he has also confirmed that the application process will be similar to the one I put in place.”

Patrick O’Donovan added that in the last round of grants Co. Limerick had done very well. “We managed to get almost €1.6million for clubs and organisations across the Limerick County Constituency in the last round. I hope that we will be able to achieve a similar amount for clubs and organisations in our area from this round.”

Patrick O’Donovan said that having spoken at length to Minister Brendan Griffin on the matter, and that he expects further details on the scheme to be announced in the coming weeks.


Ministers Donohoe and O’Donovan Publish the Data Sharing and Governance Bill 2018

Added June 12th, 2018

Bill sets out legal basis for the sharing of data between public bodies with appropriate safeguards

The Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, T.D., and the Minister of State for Public Procurement, Open Government and eGovernment, Patrick O’Donovan, T.D., today (Tuesday) published the Data Sharing and Governance Bill 2018, following recent approval by the Government.

The purpose of this Bill is to provide a generalised legal basis for the sharing of data between public bodies while also setting out appropriate safeguards under which such sharing should take place.

Enactment of this legislation will deliver tangible benefits to the public and to business. Sharing and reusing data will cut down on waste and duplication by ensuring that individuals and businesses should not have to supply the same information more than once to public bodies. More extensive data sharing will also support better policy development and more efficient and effective policy implementation.

The Bill also sets out a series of important governance measures to ensure that personal data is shared by public bodies in a lawful, proportionate and transparent manner in accordance with national and EU data protection law, including the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Development of this legislation has also created an opportunity to provide for more consistent and improved safeguards in relation to public service data management. Accordingly, the scope of the governance provisions in the Bill go beyond the sharing of data and into strengthening how the public service manages its data in respect of how data is collected and processed, how data is kept secure, and how access to data is controlled, monitored and logged.

Minister Donohoe said: ‘This Bill is key to delivering on our public service reform commitments to expand digital delivery of services and make greater use of data. It will also provide for stronger governance and transparency by public service bodies in the way they share and manage data, which will assist public bodies in meeting the more stringent data protection requirements provided for under the GDPR.’

Minister of State O’Donovan added: ‘Significant opportunities are offered by making better use of data. Citizens and businesses can receive better services. Public bodies can operate more effectively and efficiently at a lower cost to the Exchequer. Better access to data will improve decision making and planning in the delivery of services.’

Minister of State O’Donovan went on to say, “The public also has a strong expectation that their data protection rights will be respected and public bodies will use personal data responsibly, proportionately and securely. As the volume of data and our capacity to deliver digital services grow, the opportunities to improve services increase — but so too must our governance of citizens’ data. This Bill will ensure that appropriate safeguards, accountability and transparency are in place to build the public’s trust in public bodies’ usage of their data. Accordingly, this Bill will be a very important stepping stone in helping take forward the Government’s ambition to be an exemplar in the processing of citizen data.”

The Bill is available here, along with its Explanatory Memorandum and a Regulatory Impact Analysis that was conducted when the general scheme of the Bill was being drafted.


Policy background

The introduction of legislation to support the public service in making better use of the data it holds is a key commitment in the Government’s reform programme. Enactment of this Bill is essential to the successful delivery of Action 1: Accelerate Digital Delivery of Services in Our Public Service 2020, the new framework for development and innovation in the public service. It is also one the 10 key actions in the eGovernment Strategy 2017-2020.

Key provisions of the Bill

The Bill provides a generalised legal basis for data sharing between public bodies for specific, legitimate purposes, including:

  • Making public services more seamless by reducing the burden of providing the same information to different public bodies;
  • Facilitating the effective administration, supervision and control of public services;
  • Establishing entitlements to public services;
  • Identifying and correcting erroneous information; and
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of public services.

The Bill also requires that sharing be carried out under a formal written data-sharing agreement that sets out in detail what data will be shared with whom and for what purpose. Data-sharing agreements will be published on the websites of the public bodies concerned in advance of any sharing taking place, and the public will be able to comment on the proposals.

In addition, the Bill includes a number of provisions to ensure better data governance across the public service through:

  • The establishment of a Data Governance Board to advise the Minister on data management policy in the public service;
  • Ministerial power to issue standards, codes and guidelines (some of which will be legally binding) in respect of data management across the public service; and
  • Quality assessments of draft Data Sharing Agreements by the Data Governance Board.

The Bill also seeks to significantly enhance transparency by providing a legal basis for the creation of a personal data access portal that will provide a single point of access for people to see what data is held about them by public bodies, how that data is used and who is using it.

Other key provisions in the Bill include powers to:

  • Establish base registries that will provide an authentic, authoritative and complete source of basic data about people, businesses and locations for use across the public service;
  • Issue a Unique Business Identifier Number (UBIN) for the purpose of uniquely identifying any undertaking that has a transaction with a public body and for the specification of a business information dataset that can be shared by public bodies in the performance of their functions.
  • Direct data sharing between public bodies where it is in the public interest and in compliance with data protection law; and
  • Collect and process public service data to support the administration of public service pension schemes (in particular the new single pension scheme) and to facilitate better analysis and evaluation of public service staffing, pay and pensions.

Over €278,000 in capital grants for Limerick childcare providers – O’Donovan

Added June 1st, 2018

Limerick TD and Minister of State Patrick O’Donovan has welcomed the announcement from his ministerial colleague the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr. Katherine Zappone TD, that Limerick childcare providers are to receive over €278,000 in capital grants.

Minister Zappone has today announced a total of €6.87m in Capital funding which will be awarded to providers of Early Years and School Age Childcare across Ireland.

“Today’s announcement follows on from the childcare measures we introduced last September, giving up to 70,000 children extra supports. This funding will contribute towards the creation of new childcare places, natural outdoor play areas and the essential maintenance and repair of services here in County Limerick.

“The approved Early Years and School Age Capital funding for 2018 has been made available to the following childcare providers here in County Limerick:

Gaelscoil Ó Doghair Childcare Service Newcastle West, TreeTops Pallasgreen, Killmallock Pre School Ltd, Clever Clogs Croom, Herbertstown Community Childcare, The Beehive Rathkeale, Ballingarry Preschool, Glengurt National School Tournafulla, My Time Afterschools Service Knockainey, Cappamore Afterschool

“This is very good news for the County and I am delighted that Minister Zappone has been able to make this allocation, and shows that Fine Gael delivering on its commitment to support families and to help ease the financial cost of childcare”.

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