Pyrite Scheme needs to be Updated.

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DÁIL QUESTION addressed to the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government (Deputy Damien English)
by Deputy Clare Daly
for ORAL ANSWER on 06/04/2017
To ask the Minister for Housing; Planning; Community and Local Government his plans to bring forward legislation to amend the Pyrite Resolution Act 2013 in order that the remediation scheme would be based on the presence of pyrite rather than significant damage.

REPLY.
The Pyrite Resolution Board, with the support of the Housing Agency, is responsible for the implementation of the pyrite remediation scheme.  The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope.  The full conditions for eligibility under the scheme are set out in the scheme which is available on the Board’s website, www.pyriteboard.ie.

The scheme is applicable to dwellings which are subject to significant damage attributable to pyritic heave established in accordance with I.S. 398-1:2013 – Reactive pyrite in sub-floor hardcore material – Part 1: Testing and categorisation protocol.  In this regard, it is a condition of eligibility under the scheme that an application to the Board must be accompanied by a Building Condition Assessment with a Damage Condition Rating of 2.  Dwellings which do not have a Damage Condition Rating of 2 are not eligible to apply under the scheme.  This ensures that, having regard to available resources, the focus of the scheme is on dwellings which are most severely damaged by pyritic heave.

The Report of the Pyrite Panel (June 2012) recommended a categorisation system as a means of prioritising pyrite remediation works in recognition of the expensive and intrusive nature of pyrite remediation and the unpredictability of pyritic heave.  The independent Pyrite Panel was clear in its view that only dwellings with significant damage due to pyritic heave should be remediated and that it would be unreasonable to expect dwellings not exhibiting such damage to be remediated.  Dwellings which have no significant damage but have reactive pyrite in the hardcore should be monitored and only remediated if they display significant damage due to pyritic heave.  This remains the position with regard to dwellings which do not display significant pyritic damage.

QUESTION NO: 53

DÁIL QUESTION addressed to the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government (Deputy Damien English)
by Deputy Clare Daly
for ORAL ANSWER on 06/04/2017
To ask the Minister for Housing; Planning; Community and Local Government the number of cases approved for pyrite remediation under the exceptional circumstances provision in the Pyrite Resolution Act 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

REPLY.
The Pyrite Resolution Board, with the support of the Housing Agency, is responsible for the implementation of the pyrite remediation scheme.  The pyrite remediation scheme is a scheme of “last resort” and is limited in its application and scope.  The full conditions for eligibility under the scheme are set out in the scheme which is available on the Board’s website ( www.pyriteboard.ie).

The scheme is applicable to dwellings which are subject to significant damage attributable to pyritic heave established in accordance with I.S. 398-1:2013 – Reactive pyrite in sub-floor hardcore material – Part 1: Testing and categorisation protocol.  In this regard, it is a condition of eligibility under the scheme that an application to the Board must be accompanied by a Building Condition Assessment with a Damage Condition Rating of 2.  Dwellings which do not have a Damage Condition Rating of 2 are not eligible to apply under the scheme.  This ensures that, having regard to available resources, the focus of the scheme is on dwellings which are most severely damaged by pyritic heave.

Where a dwelling, otherwise not eligible for inclusion in the scheme, adjoins a dwelling already included in the scheme, such a dwelling may be considered in
accordance with the exceptional circumstance provisions set out in section 17
of the Act. Section 17 provides that exceptional circumstances may apply where –

–       failure to include a dwelling in the scheme may result in damage to that dwelling or damage to the dwelling being remediated under the scheme, or

–       pyrite remediation work is causing or may cause damage to a dwelling.

The Housing Agency will consider if exceptional circumstances apply when the Remedial Works Plan is being drawn up; the Board will be informed of any recommendation for a decision in the matter.

As matters currently stand, no dwellings have been included in the pyrite remediation scheme under the exceptional circumstances provisions of the Act.