Dublin City Council

 

Question to City Manager                           City Council Meeting 07/10/2013

 

Q71.    COUNCILLOR CIERAN PERRY

            In relation to the Housing Adaptation Grants for Older People and People with a Disability Schemes can the Manager answer to the following questions?
a) How many grant applications are currently live?
b) How many applications are currently unapproved?
c) How many applications have been approved but are on hold?
d) How many applications have been granted the highest medical priority and will be carried out this year?
e) What is the average cost of the grant?

 

CITY MANAGER’S REPLY:

No of Current live Applications (a)

No of applications currently unapproved (b)

No of approved grants on hold (c)

No of highest medical priority carried out in 2013 (d)

Average Cost of grant (e)

348

56

292

278

€9,000

Q72.    COUNCILLOR CIERAN PERRY
            In relation to the current Voluntary Redundancy Scheme for employees of Local Authorities, can the Manager answer the following questions?
a) How many Expressions of Interest were received from staff?
b) How many formal applications are expected from staff?
c) What is the estimated number of staff expected to be successful in their applications?
d) What is the expected impact of such a number of staff leaving DCC.

 

            CITY MANAGER’S REPLY:
Circular Letter LG (P) 6/2013 and amended Circular Letter LG (P) 7/2013 refer to a Voluntary Redundancy Scheme for Local Authorities.

  1. An expression of interest in the Voluntary Scheme was received from 1215 employees of Dublin City Council.  Estimates of entitlements were issued by the Human Resources Department week beginning 2nd September 2013.  Applicants were invited to submit a formal application by 30th September 2013.

 

  1. Formal applications were received from 221 employees by the closing date.  The decision on applications will made by the Human Resources Department no later than 31st October 2013 following which a notification of approval/refusal will issue to applicants. 

An applicant, approved for exit under the scheme, must return an acceptance form to the Human Resources Department no later than Friday 15th November 2013. An acceptance form once submitted cannot be withdrawn. The exit date for employees approved for exit under the Voluntary Redundancy Scheme is 31st December 2013. 

(c), (d) The reduction in employee numbers and the impact of services as a result will be considered once the number of employees approved for exit is finalised.

Q73.    COUNCILLOR CIERAN PERRY
            In relation to discarded syringe needles in public areas can the Manager answer the following questions:

  1. What type of protective gloves are issued to Dublin City Council

Waste Management staff and are they needle proof?

  1. Do DCC record the number of discarded syringe needles collected by

their staff?

  1. How many employees of DCC have been injured by syringe needles in

the past 5 years, broken down by year and area?

  1. Are Dublin City Council Waste Management responsible for the

collection of discarded syringe needles or is there an agreement with the individual service providers?

  1. Do any of the service providers take responsibility for the

collection of syringe needles discarded by their clients?
           
CITY MANAGER’S REPLY:

  1. What type of protective gloves are issued to Dublin City Council

 Waste Management staff and are they needle proof?

Protective gloves are issued on the basis of a risk assessment on the activity carried out by the staff member. There is no glove available on the market that is 100 % needle proof. Staff are issued with the type of glove appropriate to the risks that they encounter and we recommend that all staff wear gloves for hygiene reasons.

  1. Do DCC record the number of discarded syringe needles collected by

their staff?
No.

  1. How many employees of DCC have been injured by syringe needles in

the past 5 years, broken down by year and area?

2008 –   4
2009 –  10
2010 -    7
2011 -    7
2012 -    5

In the last 4 years the needle stick injuries have been broken down per postal area as follows:-

D1 – 13
D2  - 8
D6  -  2
D8  -  1
D9  -  1
D10 - 1
D12 - 3

 

  1. Are Dublin City Council Waste Management responsible for the

collection of discarded syringe needles or is there an agreement with the individual service providers?

Waste Management Staff are responsible for the cleaning of public areas which would include discarded syringes. Unfortunately, syringes are sometimes found in litter bins and dumped bags and a number of staff have been injured by syringes in this way.

 

  1. Do any of the service providers take responsibility for the collection of syringe needles discarded by their clients?

Waste Management Services will make enquiries with the service providers

Q74.    COUNCILLOR CIERAN PERRY
            Can the Manager provide an update on the proposed transfer of responsibility for the Rent Supplement Scheme from the HSE to DCC?  At what stage is this process?  What are the implications of the transfer for DCC?  Where do DCC propose to get the staff to run this new service or will the transfer involve HSE staff being redeployed to DCC?
           

CITY MANAGER’S REPLY:
The Rent Supplement Scheme is currently administered by the Department of Social Protection.  It is an objective of government to transfer the responsibility for recipients of rent supplement with long-term housing need from the Department of Social Protection to Local Authorities using the Housing Assistance Payments. The Department of Social Protection will still continue to issue rent supplement payments to those in the private rented sector who suffer a loss of income through unemployment and require a short-term income support to pay their rent.

The Housing Assistance Payment (HAP) will replace rent supplement for those with a long-term housing need.  In contrast to rent supplement, HAP will allow recipients to take up opportunities for employment without losing their entire housing support. Another potential benefit is that it will bring people in receipt of long-term rent supplement under the general social housing umbrella.

The Government approved the introduction of the HAP. This approval was subject to the submission of further detail on the scheme including an economic assessment of the cost of introducing the scheme, an overview of the business planning process and legislation to give effect to the new scheme. This exercise is now complete and is with the Minister for consideration.

Seven local authorities are involved in the test phase of the scheme. They include South Dublin County Council, Louth County Council, Kilkenny County Council, Waterford City Council, Cork County Council, Monaghan County Council and Limerick City and County Council.  Project Implementation Team is in place with responsibility for the detailed planning and implementation during the test and roll-out stages. Work is ongoing regarding commencing testing.

With regard to timelines for the implementation of the scheme itself, it is intended (subject to enactment of the relevant legislation) that Phase 1 testing of HAP would be carried out in selected authorities in 2014 with subsequent full roll out of the scheme in 2015.

The full implications of the transfer (including staffing) will be assessed during the test phase and a report will be compiled for the City and County Manager’s Association.