Communications Energy and Natural Resources

Archive for the ‘Communications Energy and Natural Resources’ Category

Communications Energy and Natural Resources, Dáil Issues

Obligations regarding reduction of emissions is not to the forefront of government policy.  Ireland has little chance of reaching its 2020 target and there is no real commitment apart from lip service to address it.

To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the implications for the State’s emissions targets and broader obligations in regard to addressing climate change of potential expansion of energy intensive industry here, particularly if same is incentivised by government, as for example in plans to expand the number of data centres located here. – Clare Daly.

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Rural Broadband

Oct
2017
05

Communications Energy and Natural Resources, Dáil Issues, Oral Questions

To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he has satisfied himself that the broadband task force recently established by his department will sufficiently identify gaps in the provision of rural broadband particularly in areas in which only a small number of homes have not been connected by private providers; and the envisaged timeframe for identifying those anomalies and successfully providing high speed broadband to all of those homes. – Clare Daly

To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the terms of reference for the broadband task force recently established by his department; if there will be a published report; and the timeframe for such a report.
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Communications Energy and Natural Resources, Dáil Issues, Oral Questions, Parliamentary Questions

To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he is satisfied that the national broadcaster has met the legal and regulatory requirements under the Broadcasting Act 2009 with regard to the outsourcing of programming by RTÉ. – Clare Daly.

To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment the discussions his department had with the RTÉ authorities prior to the announcement that the broadcaster would outsource all young person’s programming; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

– Clare Daly.

For ORAL answer on Tuesday, 6th December, 2016.

Ref No:   38623/16

RTÉ is an independent national public service broadcaster whose remit and obligations are set out in the Broadcasting Act 2009.

Section 114 (1) of the Broadcasting Act 2009 states the principal objects and associated powers of RTÉ and Section 98 provides that it shall be independent in the pursuance of these objects, subject to the requirements of the Act.

As such, I have not had any discussions with RTÉ in relation to its recent announcement that it intendeds to commission its young people’s programmes from the independent sector. The decision is solely a matter for the Board and management of RTÉ and, while it remains subject to discussion with the RTÉ Trade Union Group, I am satisfied that the decision is in compliance with RTÉ’s obligations under the Broadcasting Act 2009.

The decision is a reflection of the difficult financial challenges being faced by the broadcaster and the need for it to examine all options to ensure that it is operating as efficiently as possible.

I welcome RTÉ’s statement that the decision does not reduce its commitment to young people’s programming which is vital in ensuring that our children can continue to watch content with Irish voices and Irish stories.

Communications, Communications Energy and Natural Resources, Dáil Issues

Earlier this year in the UK the BBC were forced to bring 85 of their highly paid presenters on to their full time staff in order to stamp out the tax avoidance that was taking place by paying many of their presenters through personal service companies.  This move was the result of a recommendation by the House of Commons Public Accounts committee which described the practice as “staggeringly inappropriate”.  We are all aware that many of the high paid presenters working for RTE are utilizing similar methods to reduce their tax bills.  When I asked the Minister if he would consider a similar move to the UK he avoided any responsibility in the matter, here is a quote from the Department of Communications website followed by Clare’s question to the minister:

“The Department is responsible for the development of the legislative and regulatory framework for broadcasting and for certain media in Ireland.  We are responsible for developing policy in relation to the funding of the public service broadcasters, RTÉ & TG4 and the development of the broadcasting sector in general.”

To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if he will consider the adoption of legislation to curtail the practice by the national broadcaster of paying high earning television and radio presenters through personal service companies rather than as full time staff, in view of the fact that this practice has been curtailed in other jurisdictions. – Clare Daly.

RTÉ is an independent national public service broadcaster whose remit and obligations are set out in the Broadcasting Act 2009.
Section 114 (1) of the Broadcasting Act 2009 states the principal objects and associated powers of RTÉ and Section 98 provides that it shall be independent in the pursuance of these objects, subject to the requirements of the Act.  As such I, as Minister, have no function in RTÉ’s management of day to day matters including general staff remuneration and contracts.  These are purely matters for RTÉ management who in accordance with the company’s obligations under Section 105 of the Broadcasting Act 2009, seek to manage their full cost base in a way that ensures the financial sustainability of the company.
There are no proposals to change these legislative provisions.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/07/22/bbc-brings-85-presenters-on-staff-after-being-told-to-ditch-pers/