I am pleased to accept the Annual Report for 2004 and to acknowledge the very significant progress being made with the implementation of the Strategy Statement and related developments. I am glad to have this opportunity to record my appreciation for the work done by the Secretary General, the Chief of Staff and their civil and military colleagues.
Emergency planning has been one of my priorities since my appointment as Minister in September 2004 and I was pleased, as Chairman of the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning to be able to support the development and promulgation of Strategic Emergency Planning Guidance in December 2004. This will be an important contribution to the effective management of the emergency planning process.
The ongoing Defence Forces modernisation process is another key priority, with the overall objective of ensuring that we maintain modern Defence Forces capable of meeting the needs of Government and the public and which deliver value for money. The modernisation process has organisational, human resources, and equipment and accommodation elements and all three elements must be advanced if we are to meet our overall objective. We made progress on all of these elements in 2004 and we have to build on that for 2005 and future years.
The progress made on the re-equipment programme for the Defence Forces has been particularly noteworthy. The contracts for 25 additional Armoured Personnel Carriers for the Army worth €33m and for eight fixed-wing Training Aircraft for the Air Corps at a cost of �60m came to fruition in 2004 with the delivery of all items. In addition, contracts were placed to the total value of €61m for the provision of two Light Utility Helicopters which will be delivered by the end of 2005 and for four Utility Helicopters which are due for delivery in 2006 and 2007. A number of other smaller, but important, investments were made also.
These investments were made possible by the Government’s policy of resource reallocation and the sale of surplus properties and are proof of the our continuing commitment to the modernisation of the Defence Forces while giving value for the taxpayers’ money entrusted to us.
I intend to continue the modernisation process, building on the very good progress made in recent years
Willie O'Dea, T.D.,
Minister for Defence
I am pleased to present the Annual Report of the Department of Defence for 2004, my first as Secretary General. The report describes the progress we have made with the implementation of our Strategy Statement and related developments.
For the first time, Ireland’s Presidency of the EU in the first half of 2004 had a major significance for the Defence organisation because of the development of the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP) since our last Presidency and the very challenging agenda which we faced in that respect in 2004. I want to pay tribute to Defence people for the very positive and cooperative way in which they responded to these challenges. Working closely with our military colleagues and with our colleagues in the Department of Foreign Affairs, I believe that we were able to make a significant contribution to the success of the Presidency.
Despite the increased demands arising from the Presidency, we were still able to make significant progress on the other work of the Department. The ongoing modernisation of the Defence organisation continued throughout 2004 with the further implementation of the Integrated Personnel Management System for the Defence Forces, the launch of the Reserve Defence Force reorganisation plan, and the continuation of the major ongoing Defence Forces re-equipment and buildings programmes.
We continued to promote the coordination and oversight of emergency planning and to develop assessment and review mechanisms to ensure that emergency arrangements continue to be robust enough to withstand any large-scale emergency. We also developed and promulgated Strategic Emergency Planning Guidance , the aim of which is to provide strategic guidance to Government Departments and other key public authorities in relation to effective management of the emergency planning process.
Other highlights of the year included the enactment of the Ombudsman (Defence Forces) Act 2004, the ongoing success of the Ministerial Air Transport Service with an increase of almost 70% year on year in the number of missions flown, the ongoing success of our training and development programmes, and the publication of our first Customer Charter.
Finally, I want to pay tribute to my predecessor David O’ Callaghan who retired in September 2004 after ten years as Secretary General. During this time he played a key role in transforming Defence into the modern and successful organisation it is today.
Section 1: Mandate, Mission and Strategic Objectives
The Department has civil and military elements and was established by the Ministers and Secretaries Act, 1924, which assigns to it “the administration and business of the raising, training, organisation, maintenance, equipment, management, discipline, regulation and control according to law of the military defence forces”. The Act provides that the Minister is head of the Department and the Secretary General is the “principal officer” of the Department. As such, the Secretary General is the Minister’s principal policy adviser. The Secretary General is also the statutory Accounting Officer for all defence expenditure. In that context, there has been a significant degree of delegation of financial authority to the Defence Forces in recent years, particularly in the area of the procurement of goods and services. The role of the Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces is described in Section 2 below.
Mission Statement and high-level goals
The Strategy Statement for the Department for 2003 to 2005 sets out our mission:
“to provide value for money military services which meet the needs of Government and the public and encompass an effective civil defence capability and to coordinate and oversee the emergency planning process.”
In line with the mission, the Department’s high level goals are:
(i) the creation of a modern civil and military organisation capable of achieving its mission and fully discharging its mandate and roles;
(ii) the creation of a high performance organisation in which people are expected and enabled to achieve their full potential and where merit and effort are acknowledged;
(iii) achieving better value for money through the best use of the financial, material and human resources entrusted to us.
The Strategy Statement also sets out our strategic objectives for 2003 to 2005, which are as follows:
THE SECURITY OBJECTIVE: To contribute to the security of the State principally against the threat of armed aggression and thus contribute to political and economic well being;
THE EMERGENCY PLANNING OBJECTIVE: To promote the co-ordination of emergency planning functions across all Government Departments and agencies and to oversee the emergency planning process in general;
THE CIVIL DEFENCE OBJECTIVE: To facilitate through the Local Authorities Civil Defence responses for emergency relief and support to ensure the operation of vital services and the maintenance of public life and to provide all other supports as directed by Government;
THE WHITE PAPER OBJECTIVE: To continue the modernisation of the Army, Air Corps and Naval Service Defence Forces by implementing the White Paper on Defence and the relatedImplementation Plans for the Air Corps and the Naval Service; modernisation initiatives;
THE POLICY ADVICE AND SUPPORT OBJECTIVE: To provide the Minister for Defence with the best policy advice and support in relation to the management of Defence.
Section 2 contains details of the resources available to the Department in 2004 to meet the challenges of our mission statement and strategic objectives. A report of progress with the implementation of the strategic objectives is set out in Section 3: “Achieving Defence strategic objectives in 2004” and in Appendix 1.
On foot of the appointment of the Minister in September 2004, a new Strategy Statement has been prepared and will be published soon.
Section 2: Organisation structures, roles and resources
The Defence organisation is made up of civil and military elements, which have quite different but complementary roles in delivering the overall objectives contained in our Strategy Statement. It is important to note that the combined effort of both is required to ensure mission success.
Role of civil element of the Department
The primary role of the civil element of the Department is to support the Minister as head of the Department and in particular to provide policy advice and support on Defence matters, including assistance with policy formulation and the implementation of policy as directed by the Minister.
The civil element also has a number of specific roles, which include the management of legal, regulatory and litigation policy and related matters on behalf of the Minister; the management of human resources and industrial relations matters; and the coordination of the delivery of security, emergency and community services by the Defence Forces. In addition, the civil element provides liaison between the Defence Forces and other Government Departments, public authorities, the EU and public representatives. Policy in respect of overseas operations, in furtherance of Ireland’s commitments in the area of international security and peacekeeping, is also coordinated by the civil element. The civil element, jointly with the military, has an important strategic responsibility in relation to emergency planning coordination and oversight.
Civil servants discharge financial management and audit functions in connection with the Secretary General’s role as Accounting Officer, provide administrative support services to the Defence Forces, including payroll, and manage major procurement and infrastructural programmes. A significant degree of delegation of financial authority to the Defence Forces has taken place in recent years, particularly in the area of the procurement of goods and services.
Finally, the civil element is responsible for the administration of military pensions and has a range of responsibilities in relation to Civil Defence, the Irish Red Cross Society and Coiste an Asgard.
Military element and command arrangements
The Department’s military element consists of Defence Forces Headquarters, which is headed by the Chief of Staff of the Defence Forces. The Chief of Staff is directly responsible to the Minister for the overall management of the Defence Forces, including responsibility for the effectiveness, efficiency, military organisation and economy of the Defence Forces. Legislative provision has been made to enable the Chief of Staff to delegate duties to the Deputy Chief of Staff (Operations) and Deputy Chief of Staff (Support). The Chief of Staff is the Minister’s principal military adviser. Military command is delegated by the Minister directly to the General Officers Commanding (GOCs) each of the three territorial brigades (Eastern, Southern and Western), to the GOCs of the Defence Forces Training Centre and the Air Corps and to the Flag Officer Commanding the Naval Service. In practice, matters in relation to command are normally channelled through the Chief of Staff. In effect this means that day-to-day operational control of the Defence Forces rests with the Chief of Staff for which he is directly responsible to the Minister.
Strategic Management Committee
The Strategic Management Committee (SMC) is a joint civil-military committee, which deals with major policy issues. The SMC members are the Secretary General (Chairman), the Chief of Staff, the two Deputy Chiefs of Staff and the two Assistant Secretaries of the Department. The General Officer Commanding the Air Corps and the Flag Officer Commanding the Naval Service attend in respect of matters affecting their services
The Defence organisation manages considerable resources - human, financial, lands, equipment and buildings. At the end of 2004 Defence employed a total of 11,829 personnel made up of the Permanent Defence Force (Army, Naval Service and Air Corps), civilian employees and civil servants.
|Permanent Defence Forces (PDF)|
|Civil Servants (whole-time equivalents)|
In addition, there were about 12,000 personnel serving (part-time) in the Reserve Defence Force (RDF) and there were also about 6,000 Civil Defence volunteers.
In 2004, gross expenditure under the Defence Vote was €733m. while gross expenditure under the Army Pensions Vote was €154m. Details of expenditure by category are set out in Appendix 2.
The Defence Forces had military equipment and stock assets valued at about €550m.
Defence manages a large property and land portfolio of 8,500 hectares (made up mainly of lands at the Glen of Imaal, Co. Wicklow, the Curragh, Co. Kildare and Kilworth, Co. Cork). There are 27 permanently occupied military installations including Casement Aerodrome at Baldonnel, the Naval Base at Haulbowline, and 7 barracks at the Curragh. The Defence property portfolio includes assets in 99 locations throughout the country and premises are rented at a further 170 locations for use by the Reserve Defence Force.
Section 3: Achieving Defence strategic objectives in 2004
In this section we report by reference to each of our strategic objectives, referring to the relevant strategies and performance indicators.
The Security Objective: “To contribute to the security of the State principally against the threat of armed aggression and thus contribute to political and economic well being.”
The security of the State has national (or internal) and international aspects.
As the Strategy Statement makes clear, internal security is primarily the responsibility of the Garda Síochána with the Defence Forces playing a key role in providing, on request, aid to the civil power (ATCP) and other assistance and support.
A principal focus of the Department and the Defence Forces in recent years has been on ensuring that the organisation has the capability to respond to such requests. The development of the White Paper on Defence and its continuing implementation are particularly important in this regard (see under the White Paper Objective).
The Defence Forces Annual Report for 2004 gives details of ATCP and other activities in 2004. These included Fishery Protection, Cash Escorts, Search and Rescue, the Garda Air Support Unit, the Air Ambulance service and assistance to local authorities in relation to flood relief, bog slides and other emergencies.
The issue of the level of demand on the Defence Forces was kept under review in 2004 in consultation with the relevant Government Departments and the Garda Authorities.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs has overall responsibility for international security policy. However the role of the Minister for Defence and the Defence organisation continues to grow in importance in the context of developments within the EU.
The international security and defence policy context is defined by Ireland’s policy of military neutrality, an active political and operational role in support of the UN, the commitments to the United Nations Standby Arrangements System (UNSAS), our participation in the evolving European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP) and our membership of Partnership for Peace (PfP).
Peace support operations
The Defence Forces continued to make a major contribution to international peacekeeping throughout 2004 through their participation in overseas peace support operations. The major areas of operations on overseas missions were in Liberia, Kosovo and Bosnia Herzegovina. At the end of 2004, some 770 Defence Forces personnel were serving in 19 different missions throughout the world. This is close to Ireland’s total commitment of up to 850 personnel serving overseas at any one time.
The Defence Forces contingent in Liberia is Ireland’s largest overseas deployment at this time, involving over 430 personnel. The Defence Forces have served with UNMIL since December 2003. Together with an Infantry Company Group from Sweden, Ireland provides the Quick Reaction Force to the UNMIL Force Commander.
During the year, additional personnel were deployed as part of EUFOR, the new EU led, UN mandated mission in Bosnia Herzegovina. Ireland now has 54 personnel serving in this mission. This is the largest EU mission ever undertaken and reflects the growing importance of the EU in leading complex peace support missions. Prior to the EU takeover, NATO led the mission.
Ireland continues to contribute to the UN authorised and NATO led peace support operation in Kosovo (KFOR). Some 207 personnel, comprising an Infantry Company Group serve as part of a Finnish Battalion with KFOR.
During 2004, a small number of Defence Forces personnel continued to serve in Afghanistan as part of the International Security Assistance Force. Small numbers of personnel also filled headquarters or staff posts on a variety of missions, and continued to serve with a range of observer and monitoring missions.
European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP)
The ability of the European Union to contribute to conflict prevention, peacekeeping and crisis management continues to be of primary importance to Member States and is carried out within the context of European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP). Based on the provisions of the Treaty on European Union, Ireland has continued to participate in the ongoing development of European Union military and civilian crisis management capabilities under ESDP. Participation in ESDP takes place within the framework of Ireland’s commitment to the primacy of the United Nations in the maintenance of international peace and security.
In its mandate on European Security and Defence Policy, the Irish Presidency of the EU was tasked to take forward work on a range of issues relating to the further development of the European Security and Defence Policy. As many of these issues related to the developmental nature of ESDP, the key deliverable for the Presidency was to ensure that the developmental process remained on track.
In this regard, key priorities were:
Following the formal accession to the EU of ten new Member States on 1 May 2004, making a success of enlargement with the effective integration of the new Member States across the whole spectrum of the EU’s activities.
To ensure that preparatory work for a EU follow-on mission to the UN mandated, NATO-led Stabilisation Force in Bosnia Herzegovina was initiated and progressed in so far as feasible in anticipation of a decision for a EU mission to commence in mid-December 2004.
To ensure that work relating to the establishment of an Agency in the field of defence capabilities development, research, acquisition and armaments was advanced.
To further develop the EU’s capabilities for crisis management with a 2010 horizon. This included
addressing qualitative and quantitative shortfalls and developing a rapid response capability to
enhance the EU’s ability to support, through autonomous operations the UN at short notice.
Work was progressed at EU level and the key deliverables were achieved.
The Headline Goal 2010(HG 2010) was eonpdeoarns eCdo buyn ctihl ein E Juurne 2004. In this regard, Member States decided to commit themselves to be able by 2010 to respond with rapid and decisive action applying a fully coherent approach to the whole spectrum of crisis management operations. The development of the Rapid Response Elements, based on the Battlegroups concept, is a key element of HG 2010.
Where the Union is moving to develop its military capabilities in areas such as Rapid Response Elements Battlegroups), Ireland will take its own decision on participation. Participation would have no implications for our traditional policy of military neutrality, or for the Triple
Any Irish participation in a crisis management operation would remain a national decision, subject the usual requirements of Government decision, Dáil approval and UN authorisation. In line with this, Ireland indicated at the Military Capabilities Commitment Conference in November 2004 that we were prepared to enter into consultations with partners with a view to potential participation in this initiative.
Government also decided to establish an Inter-Departmental Group to examine the policy, legislative, financial and operational implications of possible participation in Rapid Response Elements. This Group is currently examining a range of issues arising from Ireland’s possible participation, as well as wider issues relating to the deployment of Defence Forces personnel overseas. The outcome of this analysis will be reported to the Government over the coming months.
Partnership for Peace (PfP)
Ireland joined Partnership for Peace (PfP) in December 1999. In accordance with the Presentation Document, Ireland’s annual Individual Partnership Programmes (IPP) focus on the enhancement of skills and expertise in such areas as operational and generic planning for peacekeeping and peace support, communications, command and control, operational procedures and logistics. Ireland’s fourth IPP, covering the period 2004-2005 was finalised in consultation with the Departments of Foreign Affairs, Environment and Local Government, Justice Equality and Law Reform, Health and Children, and Communications, Marine and Natural Resources. A total of one hundred and eight (108) activities were chosen representing participation by the Department of Defence, the Defence Forces and the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government. Activities consist of training courses, seminars, workshops, conferences, staff exercises and tabletop exercises.
Ireland, in common with other neutral EU Member States who are members of PfP, also participates in the PfP Planning and Review Process (PARP) mechanism for the purpose of planning in relation to the EU Headline Goal. Ireland joined PARP in 2001, and our 34 Partnership Goals were chosen with a view towards enhancing interoperability with our PfP partners in such areas as tactics, operational cohesion and logistics. The scope of our involvement in PARP is focussed on enhancing interoperability so that Defence Forces personnel can operate efficiently and effectively in a multi-national environment.
Ireland sees PfP in general, and the PARP in particular, as having a significant role to play in co-operation and planning for participation in humanitarian, rescue, peacekeeping and crisis management tasks - the Petersberg Tasks - in support of the European Union’s Common Foreign and Security Policy.
The Emergency Planning Objective: “To promote the co-ordination of emergency planning functions across all Government Departments and agencies and to oversee the emergency planning process in general.”
Throughout the year the Office of Emergency Planning (OEP) continued its role in promoting coordination of emergency planning functions. This activity, through the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning, has impacted on all Government Departments and other public authorities involved in emergency planning, management and response. The OEP has overseen the emergency planning process in general. Responsibility for specific emergency planning functions remains with the relevant Government Departments and those public authorities under their aegis.
The Government Task Force on Emergency Planning met on six occasions in 2004. The Task Force comprises those Ministers and/or senior officials of Government Departments and public authorities, which make a key contribution to the emergency planning process. It is the top-level structure, under the chairmanship of the Minister for Defence, which is leading policy coordination and overseeing the emergency planning activities of all Government Departments and key public authorities. It has continued to promote the best possible use of resources and compatibility between different planning requirements.
The Inter-Departmental Working Group on Emergency Planning (IDWG) met on nine occasions during 2004 and reported to the Minister for Defence at the Government Task Force. The IDWG comprises officials representing Government Departments and public authorities with lead or principal support roles in Government emergency plans. The Task Force charges this Working Group with carrying out specific studies and developing particular aspects of emergency planning. This Working Group continued to address emergency planning matters to reduce the potential impacts of emergencies on this State and has worked to develop mechanisms for oversight of Government emergency planning. Continuous assessment, review and improvement mechanisms were designed and undertaken to ensure that arrangements continue to be robust enough to withstand a large-scale emergency.
The Office of Emergency Planning has developed strategic guidance for Government Departments. It has worked with the IDWG to produce such guidance which broadly covers emergency planning structures, roles of Government in emergency planning, risk assessment, communications, training, oversight and assessment and the international dimensions to emergency planning. This guidance facilitates the engagement of Ministers and their Departments in the emergency planning process.
A key area of activity during 2004 was the further development of oversight of emergency planning to refine and develop the arrangements that exist, to continuously improve them through review, validation and revision, and to generally build a basis for increased confidence in the emergency planning process. The aim for any Government Department, when participating in this oversight process, has been to add value to its emergency planning, management and response systems and to encourage the evolution of mechanisms to promote continuous improvement within the Department and those bodies under its aegis. This has highlighted areas of weakness, assisted in strengthening systems and led to the production of revised strategies and plans.
International linkages have been important as a means of sharing expertise and resources. The Irish Presidency of the European Union presented an opportunity to continue development of programmes to improve cooperation within the expanded Union and the candidate countries to prevent and limit any consequences of chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear threats. The European Council declaration on combating terrorism was a significant achievement. Developments in the Civil Protection area, which encompasses arrangements for responding to all natural or manmade emergencies, were also significant. The Partnership for Peace Programme has provided a parallel programme of research and development. Other bilateral international contacts have also been valuable in sharing information on common areas of interest.
Throughout 2004 the Government Task Force, the Inter-Departmental Working Group and the OEP have fostered a more proactive approach to the conduct of emergency planning, with a high level of cooperation evident amongst key Government Departments and other public authorities. Continuing review of emergency planning and especially the need for regular exercising and validation of emergency plans has been a constant theme of the Minister for Defence, as chair of the Government Task Force. During 2004 the OEP has supported the development of a number of significant emergency exercises, which were conducted, by various Departments and public authorities to enhance their operational capabilities.
The Minister for Defence presented a confidential report on emergency planning to Government in November 2004. The Report looks back on a solid record of achievement and on increased levels of international cooperation, such as the recent agreement between the Government of Ireland and the United Kingdom, which facilitate cooperation in the event of a nuclear incident.
The Civil Defence Objective: “To facilitate through the Local Authorities Civil Defence responses for emergency relief and support to ensure the operation of vital services and the maintenance of public life and to provide all other supports as directed by Government.”
Following the enactment of the Civil Defence Act 2002 and the subsequent signing of an Establishment Order, responsibility for the management and development of Civil Defence at national level passed from the Department to an independent State authority known as the Civil Defence Board in May 2003. The Board, which was appointed by the Minister for Defence, is representative of the principal stakeholders in the wider civil protection community. Under the Act, the Board is obliged, having consulted with local authorities, Government Departments and others, to prepare a strategic plan for Civil Defence.
The Strategic Plan, which will form the basis for development of Civil Defence up to 2007, has been approved by the Minister, who retains overall policy responsibility in relation to Civil Defence. The Board is looking forward to embarking on an implementation programme aimed at modernising and streamlining the organisation.
During the year, the decentralisation of Civil Defence staff commenced when 10 staff moved into temporary office accommodation in Roscrea. The tendering process for the fit-out of the Board’s new Headquarters is currently underway and it is anticipated that the facility will be fully operational later this year.
"The White Paper Objective: “To continue the modernisation of the Army, Air Corps and Naval Service Defence Forces by implementing the White Paper on Defence and the related Implementation Plans for the Air Corps and the Naval Service modernisation initiatives.”
In February 2000 the Government published the White Paper on Defence, which deals with all aspects of defence provision and organisation and sets out the policy on Defence for the period to 2010 with a view to ensuring an appropriate level of defence capability, having regard to the changing defence and security environment both at home and abroad.
The White Paper emphasises the need to ensure that Ireland has conventionally organised Defence Forces which are affordable and sustainable and which are capable of carrying out the revised roles set by Government. It set out major new plans for the development of the Defence Forces. These involved the provision of a Permanent Defence Force of 10,500 personnel and the investment of pay savings arising, plus the proceeds from the sales of properties surplus to requirements, in new equipment and infrastructure.
The White Paper also provided for new Air Corps and Naval Service organisations (now in place), a new Army organisation plan, new Reserve Defence Force structures and arrangements, and the development of an Integrated Personnel Management System (IPMS) for the Defence Forces. Significant progress on each of these elements continued in 2004. The re-equipment programme for the Defence Forces continued in 2004. The contracts for 25 additional Armoured Personnel Carriers for the Army worth €33m and for eight fixed-wing Training Aircraft for the Air Corps at a cost of €60m came to fruition in 2004 with the delivery of all items.
Tender competitions for the acquisition of two Light Utility and four Utility Helicopters for the Air Corps were held in 2004 and contracts have been placed to the value of �61m for the provision of the helicopters. The two Light Utility Helicopters will be delivered by the end of 2005, with two Utility Helicopters due for delivery in 2006 and two in 2007.
Delivery of the Javelin anti-tank guided weapon system will be completed this Summer. The purpose of this acquisition is to give Defence Forces personnel an effective, anti-armour capability while on peace support operations.
The ongoing programmes of acquisitions of both Nuclear Biological Chemical (NBC) equipment and Night Vision Equipment (NVE) continued during 2004.
The acquisition of Light Tactical Armoured Vehicles (LTAVs) has been identified as a key priority by the military authorities. The LTAVs will complement the role of the recently acquired Armoured Personnel Carriers.
In addition to the investments on the equipment side, there was also progress on infrastructure. Major projects completed in 2004 are as follows:
|Naval Base||New Technical Stores|
|Naval Base||Upgrade of Accomodation and Office Facilities|
|Curragh Camp||Upgrade Storage Facility|
|Custume Barracks, Athlone||New NCO's Mess|
The Policy Advice and Support Objective: “To provide the Minister for Defence with the best policy advice and support in relation to the management of Defence.”
A primary responsibility of the Department and the Defence Forces is to provide support and assistance to the Minister in the discharge of his responsibilities, as detailed in Section 2.
In line with the mission statement, our focus as a Department is on ensuring that Defence is well managed, that resources are properly utilised and that we maintain the capacities required to properly discharge the functions and roles assigned to the organisation. On the policy side, the key focus is on providing timely, relevant and quality advice on all matters pertaining to the Minister’s responsibilities.
There is necessarily a degree of overlap between the Policy Advice and Support Objective and the other Defence strategic objectives and the achievement of those other objectives is critical to the success of this objective and overall mission success.
The Business Planning process for 2004 again commenced with a consultation process within each of the Department’s Branches in which staff at all levels had the opportunity to contribute to the way in which their Branch would translate the Department’s goals and objectives into an action plan for the year.
The Department’s first Customer Charter was published with the new Customer Service Action Plan (CSAP) for 2004-2007 in June 2004. Most of the customer service activity for the year centred around the development of these documents, which inform our customers about the levels of service that they can expect from us.
In preparation for the development of the Charter, the Department conducted a Customer Survey in February/March 2004. Surveys were issued to 405 customers of the Department, including client Departments. Completed surveys were received from 168 customers (41% response rate).
The overall service supplied by the Department was rated as Good or Excellent by 90% of respondents to the survey. However, a number of customers identified telephone access and the timeliness of responses to correspondence as areas requiring improvement.
During 2004 the Payroll Area of Finance Branch issued two customer survey questionnaires. The results (which are set out in the following table) were very positive and showed a high level of satisfaction with the services provided. Follow up action has been taken on all of the issues raised by respondents.
|Rating of Service Provided|
|Reserve Pay Units - 77% response|
|Travel & Subsistence payees -38% response|
Our IT Helpdesk service records showed a high level of technical assistance provided to internal customers in development of new and existing systems in 2004.
Freedom of Information
The number of Freedom of Information requests received in 2004 decreased by 54% from the 2003 figure (106). Summary details are as follows:
Withdrawn or handled
Note: Some of the requests finalised in 2004 had been carried over from 2003.
Human Resources Development
As successive Strategy Statements and the White Paper have pointed out, we see the management and development of staff as critical to mission success. On the civil service side, significant changes have been made in the human resources area in recent years, including selection for promotion through competitive interview and a major investment in training and development to ensure that staff be given the opportunity to reach their full potential. A Human Resources Strategy has been agreed and published and its implementation is ongoing.
There have been significant developments on the military side also, with key elements of the Integrated Personnel Management System being implemented and a Defence Forces HR Strategy under development.
Civil Service Training & Development
The Department’s commitment to staff training and development was initially acknowledged in 2001 with the award of the FÁS Excellence through People accreditation making Defence the first Government Department to receive this award.
The effectiveness of the Training and Development Section in delivering these services was further acknowledged by the achievement of ISO 9001:2000 in December 2003. Both awards were retained in 2004.
The meeting of training needs identified through the civil service wide Performance Management and Development System (PMDS) has become an important contribution to the improvement in the delivery of the Department’s services.
In 2004 a total of 204 training courses were provided, at which there were 1,178 attendees. Of the courses provided, 43% were conducted in-house by internal trainers; 36% were conducted in-house by external trainers; and 21% were conducted externally by external trainers.
14 courses were in the IT area with the remainder being of a more general nature.
The Department invested 4.94% of payroll on training and development in 2004, exceeding the target of 4% set by Government.
It is our policy that all personnel are accorded equality of opportunity and treatment and we continue to promote equality and to support the initiatives undertaken to achieve equality of opportunity in the public service. The Department’s Human Resources Strategy reflects this policy position and includes a programme of affirmative action (overcoming obstacles to career progression) to address such issues as the implementation of the Government target whereby one-third of posts in the grade of Assistant Principal should be filled by women within 5 years and this target has now been met, with 33% of these posts currently being held by women. Morever, the number of women in the grade of Principal has doubled since 2003 and women now represent over 30% of the grade.
We believe that our broad approach to equality not only recognises and guarantees the equal rights of all of our staff but also ensures that we give them the opportunity to achieve their full potential and to make the optimum contribution to the success of the organisation.
We have continued to exceed the Government’s target on the employment of people with disabilities.
Partnership - Civil Service
The Dublin and Galway subcommittees, established by the main Partnership Committee in 2002, continued to operate successfully in 2004 by dealing with various local issues in an effective and inclusive way. The work of the other subcommittees, including the Environment and Energy Efficiency Committee, and the Health and Safety Committee, also continued throughout the year.
The Performance Management and Development System (PMDS) Project Team was chiefly engaged in the preparations for the commencement in mid-2004 of the next stage of PMDS, upward feedback.
Following the announcement, in December 2003, of the decentralisation of the Department’s Dublin based civil service staff to Newbridge, it was decided that the Partnership Committee should play a key role in the process, principally as a primary forum for the dissemination of information on the relocation project and the Committee continues in this role as further developments arise.
Defence Forces Partnership
The National Partnership Forum and Steering Committee and the Partnership Sub-Committee continued to meet on a regular basis during 2004, ensuring common ownership by the stakeholders in the ongoing Defence modernisation process and programmes and in the related change management process.
Partnership - Civilian Employees
The civilian employee workforce is deployed in the various military installations throughout the country. The Partnership process continues to play an important role in the resolution of local issues and provides a forum for interface at local level.
Harassment and bullying in the Defence Forces
Dr Eileen Doyle and the External Advisory Committee presented their report “The Challenge of a Workplace” in March 2002. The report’s contents and recommendations were accepted in full. Implementation of the recommendations of the report has been one of the highest priorities for the Defence Forces and the Department since its publication. An Independent Monitoring Group was established in May 2002 and met regularly to oversee the implementation of the report’s recommendations.
The Independent Monitoring Group’s progress report “Response to the Challenge of a Workplace”, was presented to the Minister for Defence on 24 September 2004. It is available on the Defence Forces website and describes in detail the progress achieved since the publication of the original Doyle Report in 2002.
Arising from the Doyle Report, the following steps have been taken:
Firm guiding principles have been set out in the Defence Forces’ Dignity in the Workplace Charter
A major educational awareness programme is ongoing throughout the Defence Forces.
A new Administrative Instruction on Interpersonal Relationships was introduced in March 2003 and a users guide distributed to every member of the Defence Forces.
Some 177 of a planned 200 Designated Contact Persons have been put in place throughout the organisation to facilitate the operation of the formal and informal procedures that may be used by any party wishing to institute a complaint.
An independent external confidential “Free Phone” Helpline and Counselling Service was set up for members of the Permanent Defence Force in March 2003.
An independent pilot project of Exit Interviews seeking the experiences and views of outgoing members of the Defence Forces was conducted.
Leadership training has been given by external experts and has been the subject of NCO focus groups with emphasis on “training the trainers”
Changes in Cadet School Instruction have been initiated and issues concerning the ranking, selection and training for Cadet School instructors are being addressed.
Defence Forces Regulations and Administrative Instructions policies and procedures have been reviewed by an Equality Steering Group chaired by a member of the Labour Court.
Legislation to establish a Defence Forces Ombudsman was enacted in 2004.
An officer within the Defence Forces Human Resources Management Section has been assigned responsibility for Equality matters.
The gross Departmental spend on the Defence and Army Pensions Votes amounted to �887m in 2004. Good financial management and accounting systems are essential to ensure that all expenditure is properly spent and accounted for. The present systems have served the Department well but are coming to the end of their useful life. It is likely that they will be replaced in 2005 in the context of the Management Information Framework (MIF) initiative referred to below.
Efforts continued during 2004 to encourage electronic payment as the preferred salary and pension payment method and increased numbers opted for this method of payment. On average 97% of the Department’s civil servants and military personnel are paid by electronic means. Additionally, since November 2004 all Defence employees receive their expenses payments by electronic means only.
There is also a facility in place since 2002 for the payment electronically of the Department’s suppliers and the uptake for this method has also been increasing.
During 2004, in addition to their ongoing work, staff in all sections of Finance Branch provided assistance to the MIF project team.
As part of the Civil Service-wide Management Information Framework initiative, a contract was signed in April 2004 with Oracle EMEA for the installation of new financial and management information systems for the Department and the Defence Forces. Work commenced in June 2004 with information gathering and system design. The design of the new systems was fully signed off at the end of October 2004, when system build commenced. The first phase of the system will go-live in 2005, with further phases following up to 2006.
The Department’s Internal Audit Section is an independent unit reporting directly to the Secretary General. As a service provider, the Section follows closely the Professional Practice Standards set down by the Institute of Internal Auditors by providing to management, both civil and military, an independent and objective assurance and consulting activity which is designed to add value and improve the Department’s operations through the evaluation and improvement of the effectiveness of the risk management, control and governance processes in the Department. The Section works to an annual audit plan, covering a range of systems, compliance and stores audits, which is approved by the Secretary General. The Section’s work is reviewed by the Department’s Audit Committee on an ongoing basis. During 2004, the Section carried out an audit programme of some 150 audits.
Prompt Payment of Accounts
The Department complies with the provisions of the Prompt Payment of Accounts Act 1997 and the European Communities (Late Payment in Commercial Transactions) Regulations 2002. It is the Department’s policy to settle all invoices promptly with due regard to contractual terms where applicable, good financial and cash management practices and the provisions of the Act and Regulations. Procedures to ensure compliance with the legislation are in place and provide reasonable, but not absolute, assurance against material non-compliance.
Relevant statistics for 2004 are given in the following table:
|Total number of invoices processed|
|Total value of all payments|
|Total number of late payments|
|Total value of late payments|
|Value of late payments as a % of total payments|
|Amount of interest paid|
|Amount of interest as a % of total payments|
In terms of the amount paid in interest and the amount of interest as a percentage of total payments, the 2004 figures represent a significant improvement on 2003.
Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) and e-Government
Financial and administrative systems support
Ongoing support and maintenance for all financial and administrative systems continued to be our main priorities in terms of funding and personnel in 2004. Development work was completed on the total integration of payroll databases and on the expansion of internal web-enabled applications, which have facilitated workflow across the organisation. Resources were devoted to the technical evaluation of tenders for the new financial management and information system. In 2004, approximately €2.3m was spent on information technology, office equipment and related consumables with the aim of providing value for money while meeting the demands of our internal and external customers and delivering the technical infrastructure for the MIF project over the next three to five years.
e-Government and the Information Society
The Department’s participation in the e-Government programme during 2004 continued, with major steps forward in electronic payments to internal and external customers, in line with the National e-Payments Strategy objectives. Good progress was made also with the e-Procurement and e-Cabinet programmes.
Telecommunications and networks
During 2004, the emphasis moved to greater levels of IT security, in view of the establishment of Government VPN connections, the preparation of an extensive infrastructure for delivery of the MIF to the Department and the Defence Forces and the rollout of central initiatives. Proactive measures included the use of private partnership with specialist security firms and a substantial upgrading of all security levels, firewalls, filters and virus detection software. Ongoing monitoring of solutions ensures that the Department gets maximum value for money across a range of service providers.
The efficient and effective management of the Department’s property portfolio is a major challenge. In addition to the letting and leasing of lands and properties, the Department disposes of property that is surplus to military requirements. This activity has become increasingly important since 1998 with the Government’s decision to close and dispose of certain barracks that were surplus to requirements. The proceeds from the sales of barracks and other surplus properties, including married quarters, are used to provide funds for investment in Defence Forces equipment and infrastructure.
The Department continued to cooperate with other Departments and State agencies in making Defence facilities available for a variety of purposes including accommodation for asylum seekers, the provision of firing ranges to the Gardaí, and facilities to the media.
We are very conscious of the importance of maintaining our property in an environmentally friendly manner. Accordingly, we endeavour to maintain a sustainable environment approach and to preserve the natural landscape in line with Government policy as set out in the National Heritage and Biodiversity Plans.
The Government approved in 2004 the drafting of a Bill to provide, inter alia, for the establishment of a statutory body to manage the Curragh of Kildare, with the exception of the Curragh Military Camp. The Bill is being drafted and is expected to be published by end-2005.
As part of the Government’s Affordable Housing Initiative, the release of the Department’s property at Magee Barracks, Kildare, and lands at Gormanston, Co. Meath was announced in July 2003. In addition, the Government agreed in December, 2003 to the release of a further series of State lands for inclusion in the Initiative, including Department of Defence sites at St. Bricin’s Hospital in Dublin and part of the Camp Field, Collins Barracks, Cork. Work towards the transfer of those properties was advanced in 2004.
Hearing loss and general accident claims
Hearing Loss Claims
The current Strategy Statement prioritises the need to dispose of hearing loss claims in an equitable and cost effective manner.
By 31 December 2004 a total of 16,730 claims had been lodged by current and former members of the Defence Forces for loss of hearing allegedly caused during military service. A total of 15,435 claims had been disposed of, mainly through settlement, leaving 1,295 outstanding at the end of the year. Overall €184.2m had been paid in damages, while plaintiffs’ legal costs amounted to an additional €93.4m. Total expenditure on hearing loss claims stood at €277.6m on 31 December 2004. At year-end, the Department was receiving new claims at an average rate of less than one per week. This represents a substantial decrease on the 2003 average of over four per week.
The level of quantum in hearing loss cases was reduced to an average level of €5,804 plus costs in 2004. Total expenditure on hearing loss claims for the year amounted to €3.5m, including about €1.2m in legal costs.
Since the closure of the Early Settlement Scheme on 26 July 2002, 199 claims were lodged and by end of 2004, 61 were disposed of mainly by the withdrawal of plaintiffs. In addition all claims with the Department’s loss adjusters were either settled or returned to the Department during the year.
General Claims (excluding Hearing Loss)
Claims delegated to the State Claims Agency
Since December 2001, delegated responsibility for handling the majority of new claims lodged against the Minister for Defence has rested with the State Claims Agency (SCA), which was established under the National Treasury Management Agency Amendment Act, 2000. During 2004, 160 claims were referred to the Agency. 94 cases were finalised during this period. Total expenditure in 2004 on claims finalised by the Agency amounted to €2.11m, which included €0.45m in legal costs
In relation to claims that have not been delegated to the SCA, 50 claims were finalised in 2004 leaving 458 claims outstanding at year-end. Total expenditure in 2004 on these claims amounted to about �1.86m, including �0.49m in legal costs.
Programme of simplification and reform of legislation
A joint civil service and military Project Team was established in August 2003 for the purpose of rewriting and simplifying Defence Force Regulations made pursuant to the Defence Act 1954 together with the relevant military Administrative Instructions. This project is continuing.
The Ombudsman (Defence Forces) Act 2004 was enacted in November and the Office of the Ombudsman for the Defence Forces will be established in 2005.
Restatement of the Defence Acts
The restatement of the Defence Acts was published in July 2004. This is an administrative consolidation of the Acts and is certified by the Attorney General under the Statute Law Restatement Act 2002 to be prima facie evidence of the law restated in it.
Section 4: Other Developments in 2004
Ministerial Air Transport Service (MATS)
The Ministerial Air Transport fleet consists of a 14 year old Gulfstream IV and a new Learjet 45. The Learjet came into operation in January 2004 to replace a 25-year-old Beech aircraft in a Ministerial Air Transport role.
In 2004, a total of 266 MATS missions was flown – 177 of them during Ireland’s Presidency of the European Union when Government Ministers availed of the MATS service extensively to meet their Presidency commitments. In 2003, a total of 158 MATS missions was flown.
Benchmarking and Sustaining Progress
Payment of the final two phases of the benchmarking increases and the general round increases agreed as part of Sustaining Progress are dependent, in the case of each sector, organisation and grade, on verification of satisfactory co-operation with flexibility and ongoing change; satisfactory implementation of the agenda for modernisation and the maintenance of stable industrial relations and absence of industrial action in respect of any matters covered by Sustaining Progress.
Those requirements are reflected in specific actions and commitments that are enshrined in Action Plans which are in place on both the civil service side of Defence and in the Defence Forces. For the civil service, progress against the Action Plan is assessed by the Civil Service Performance Verification Group while a similar body exercises that role in respect of the Defence Forces.
In 2004, both bodies verified that progress with implementation justified the payment of all the benchmarking and pay increases arising.
During the year agreement was reached, through the central Joint Industrial Council (JIC) mechanism, with staff representatives regarding the modernisation, flexibility and change required of civilian employees to enable payments to be made under the Benchmarking and Sustaining Progress agreements. Payment of the phased awards set out in the agreements is predicated on full compliance with the agreed modernisation, flexibility and change agenda and is subject to performance verification as set out in Sustaining Progress. All payments have been made to date.
Pension scheme for military personnel
On foot of the Final Report of the Commission on Public Service Pensions and the Public Service Superannuation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2004, a minimum pension age of 50 will be introduced in the context of the new pension scheme, which will apply to new entrants from 1 April 2004. The terms of the new pension scheme will be the subject of further discussions with the Representative Associations.
In December 2003, a Government decision provided for the decentralisation of the Department’s Dublin headquarters to Newbridge and the decentralisation of Defence Forces Headquarters to the Curragh.
The civil-military Defence Implementation Group set up in 2003 continues to operate. In 2004, a comprehensive outline Implementation Plan was drawn up and submitted to the central Decentralisation Implementation Group (DIG). The plan has since been updated and implementation continues.
Appendix 1: Strategies, performance indicators and current status
The tables which follow are reproduced from the Strategy Statement 2003-2005 with the addition of a third column which gives details of the current status in respect of each of the strategies.
The Security Objective
|Strategies ||Performance Indicators ||Current Status |
|Review Defence Force commitments and capabilities in relation to emergency plans and maintenance of essential services, and develop requisite procedures and protocols in respect thereof. ||Completion of initial review by mid 2003.|
Agreement on procedures and protocols by mid-2004.
|Initial Review completed. |
Process is ongoing.
|Define protocols in relation to the Defence Forces providing support to the civil authority, particularly in the area of marine environment protection and pollution control. ||Agreement on procedures and protocols by mid-2004. ||Draft procedures documented and under discussion with stakeholders. |
|Agree Service Level Agreements (SLAs) with principal Naval Service and Air Corps customers as follows:-|
|Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources on fishery protection; ||Definitive SLA in place by end-2003. |
(Interim SLA currently in place)
|SLA in place and operational.|
Updated SLA for 2005-2007 finalised.
|Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform on Air Corps support for the Garda Air Support Unit; ||Interim SLA in place by May 2003. |
Definitive SLA in place by May 2004.
|SLA in place and operational. |
|Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources on Air Corps support for Search and Rescue; ||Interim SLA in place by end-2003. |
Definitive SLA in place by end- 2004.
|Maritime service withdrawn in 2004|
|Department of Health and Children and Health Boards on provision of Air Ambulance service by the Air Corps. ||Interim SLA in place by end-September, 2003|
Definitive SLA in place by end-June, 2004
|Final draft SLA under discussion. |
The Emergency Planning Objective
|Strategies ||Performance Indicators ||Current Status |
|To foster a more proactive approach to the conduct of emergency planning by interacting with key players in other Government Departments and agencies. ||Promotion of a facilitative climate and development of greater confidence in the emergency planning process. |
Establishment and maintenance of an emergency planning contact programme through regular meetings of the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning and the Interdepartmental Working Group on Emergency Planning.
Six meetings of the Government Task Force and nine meetings of the IDWG were held in 2004.
|To provide the necessary supports to the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning, chaired by the Minister for Defence, and the Interdepartmental Working Group on Emergency Planning. ||Regular meetings and active pursuit of the issues arising.|
Provision of regular reports to Government.
|Agreement was reached on strategic guidance for Government Departments to assist with preparing their emergency plans. |
The third confidential Annual Report on Emergency Planning was presented to Government in November 2004.
|To oversee the emergency planning arrangements in Government Departments, agencies and other bodies. ||Regular reviews and validation of Government emergency planning and response arrangements. ||The mechanisms to drive the oversight process were further refined and developed. |
The oversight process involved a series of formal bilateral meetings between the Office of Emergency Planning and the twelve key Government Departments with lead and/or support roles in the emergency planning process.
The oversight process was completed and the outputs informed a significant part of the confidential Annual Report to Government on Emergency Planning.
A review of the oversight process is feeding into the process for 2005 and will be further developed in future years.
|Introduction and implementation of an assurance model (Common Assessment Framework) for the assessment of the emergency planning functions within Government Departments and agencies.||First cycle to be completed by end 2003. ||Superseded by strategic guidance initiative mentioned above. |
The Civil Defence Objective
|Strategies ||Performance Indicators ||Current Status |
|Civil Defence Board - to effect as seamless as possible a transition to the new structures. ||New organisation in place by end-2003||The new Board assumed its functions in June 2003. |
|Decentralise the Civil Defence function to Roscrea. ||Function decentralised and full range of services provided by end- 2003. ||Civil Defence staff in temporary accommodation in Roscrea. Fit out of the new HQ is underway and the facility will be fully operational by late 2005. |
|Design a training exercise programme to develop organisation on policy lines. ||Annual training and exercise activities conducted. ||Ongoing.|
|Board to prepare Strategic Plan for Civil Defence Development.||Plan approved by the Minister. ||Plan approved by Minister for Defence.|
|Streamline procedures. ||Board to review delegation of financial authority to Local Authorities. ||Under consideration.|
The White Paper Objective The Policy Advice and Support Objective
|Strategies ||Performance Indicators ||Current Status |
|Review of Army organisation. ||Review completed in 2004. |
Implementation on basis of timetable approved by Minister.
|Initial work completed. Army organisation matters will be considered further in the context of a planned review of White Paper implementation. |
|Complete and implement the IPMS. ||IPMS finalised in 2003. |
Implementation on basis of timetable approved by Minister.
|Key IPMS elements now provided for in Defence Forces Sustaining Progress Action Plan. Development of Defence Forces HR Strategy planned. |
|Reorganisation of the Reserve. ||Plan implemented by end-2008. ||Implementation Plan approved and rollout in progress. |
|Defence Forces Investment Programme: |
|2003 Equipment and Infrastructure Programme ||Implemented by end-2003. ||Completed. |
|2004 programme ||Approved by mid-2003. Implemented by end-2004. ||Completed. |
|2005 programme ||Approved by mid-2004. Implemented by end-2005. ||Programme will be completed by end-year. |
|Strategies ||Performance Indicators ||Current Status |
|Business Planning ||Annual plans for 2003 in place as soon as possible after Strategy Statement is approved. |
Plans for 2004 in place by end-2003.
Plans for 2005 in place by end- 2004.
|Plans implemented. |
Plans in place
|Reduction in Civil Service numbers by 10% |
|Reduction achieved by end- 2004 |
Develop Customer Charter to agreed timetable.
Update Customer Service Action Plan 2001-2004 to agreed timetable.
Achieved. Charter published June 2004.
Achieved. Plan published June 2004.
|Civil Service Human Resources Development Strategy (incorporating an Equality Policy document) ||Completion by end- 2003. ||Completed and implementation ongoing.|
|PMDS ||Completion of third annual cycle by January 2004. |
Commencement of fourth and subsequent cycles from January 2004 and annually thereafter.
Deliver first part of PMDS Training to Civilian Employees by end- 2003.
Fourth cycle completed, fifth cycle ongoing.
|Annual Training Programme |
Increase investment in Training and Development
Excellence Through People accreditation
Civilian Employees’ Partnership
|Programme designed and implemented annually. |
Equality awareness training offered to all staff by end-2003.
Increase to 4% of payroll by end -2003.
Retain the ETP accreditation for 2004 and 2005.
Foster and strengthen process and hold one national seminar in each year.
|2004 programme designed and implemented. |
Achieved and training available to all new staff.
Target exceeded and in 2004, Excluding the costs of course participants’ salaries, 4.94% of payroll was spent on Training & Development.
ETP retained in 2004. ISO accreditation also retained.
The partnership process is working well at both a central and local level.
|Defence Forces Partnership |
|National Partnership Forum.|
Establish joint Management/Representative Associations Partnership Committees at Brigade, DFTC, Air Corps, Naval Service and DFHQ levels.
|Operational by mid-2003. |
Established by end- 2004.
|Operational. Now meeting on a monthly basis. |
Under discussion at the National Partnership Forum and Steering Committee.
|Implement recommendations of Doyle Report into harassment, sexual harassment and bullying in the Defence Forces ||Full implementation of all recommendations ||Implementation ongoing. |
|Internal Audit: |
|Annual Programme 2003;|
Annual Programme 2004;
Annual Programme 2005.
|Annual Programmes completed to satisfaction of Audit Committee. ||2003 and 2004 Programmes satisfactorily completed. |
|Management Information Framework: |
|Completion of System specifications |
Selection of new system
Installation of new system.
|By June 2003. |
By end- 2003
By end- 2004.
System installed. Phase 1 go-live planned for end 2005.
|ICT and e-Government: |
|Further website development by end 2003: |
e-Procurement system in place by end-2003;
e-Cabinet pilot project end-2003;
Business application development.
|Interactive FOI and other queries in place. Dynamic Information updating. |
Streamlined purchasing process and achievement of economies of scale.
VPN integration by mid-2003.
Complete current programme by end 2005.
Extent to which business managers requirements met.
Implementation is dependent on technical and policy issues being resolved at Centre.
Fully implemented, including upgrades and increased bandwidth.
High percentage of payments being made electronically. On target for end-2005.
Feedback indicates requirements being met.
|Property Management: |
|Sales of Barracks already closed and other surplus property; |
Sales of Married Quarters outside Barracks;
Review of property holdings;
Streamlining of management systems (ongoing) and development of Geographical Information System (GIS).
|Barracks sales completed. Other surplus property sales ongoing. |
Most sales completed by end-2003.
Property needs/ surpluses identified.
Heads of Bill submitted to Government by end-July, 2003.
Extent to which new systems achieve the objectives set.
|Barracks sales completed. Preparations for property transfers for Affordable Housing Initiative purposes ongoing. |
Other sales/disposals continuing.
Heads of Bill approved by Government in July 2004. Bill being drafted.
|Hearing Loss and other claims: |
|Hearing Loss: |
To dispose of claims efficiently, fairly and at minimum cost to the Exchequer.
|Number of claims finalised per year. |
% of cases successfully defended.
Quantum and costs per case.
|506 claims finalised in 2004. 15,435 claims finalised in total. |
Nearly 75% of “statute” cases successfully defended.
Average quantum reduced to €5,804 in 2004. Average costs per case were €3,322.
€277.6m spent on Hearing Loss cases in total.
|General Claims: |
To dispose of non delegated claims efficiently, fairly and at minimum cost to Exchequer.
|Number of claims finalised per year. |
% of cases successfully defended.
Quantum and costs per case.
|50 non-delegated claims finalised in 2004. |
Majority of cases settled successfully out of court.
Quantum maintained at satisfactory levels.
€1.86m spent on non-delegated claims in 2004, including €0.49m in legal costs.
|Legislative programme, simplification and reform: |
|Ombudsman Bill; |
Restatement of Defence Acts;
Simplify and reform Defence Forces regulations.
|Enacted in 2003. |
Publication in 2003.
Number of regulations simplified.
Ordnance regulations and clothing regulations are being revised
Appendix 2: Details of Defence Vote expenditure for 2005 by category
|PDF Pay and Allowance|
|Pay and Allowances of Civilian Employees and RDF|
|Air Corps: Equipment, fuel, maintenance, etc.|
|Naval Service: Equipment, fuel, maintenance etc|
|Barracks expenses, repairs and maintenance of lands|
|Buildings – Capital|
|Military Transport: New vehicles, fuel, repairs and maintenance|
|Other non-pay military expenditure |
|Administrative Budget |
|Civil Defence, Irish Red Cross Society and Coiste an Asgard|
Details of Army Pensions Vote expenditure for 2004 by category
|Defence Forces (Pensions) Schemes and payments in respect of transferred service|
|Wound and disability pensions, allowances and gratuities, to or in respect of former members of the Defence Forces|
|Payments to or in respect of Veterans of the War of Independence|
|Army Pensions Board and other miscellaneous payments.|
Note: Minor discrepancies due to rounding may arise.