Thursday, 14 February 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Unrevised

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Written Answers Nos. 134-151

NAMA Operations

 134. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if he intends to revise corporate governance oversight process in respect of National Assets Management Agency in view of its increased portfolio of assets and the revised promissory note arrangements; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7902/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan There is a robust corporate governance oversight process in place in respect of the National Assets Management Agency. The Agency’s corporate governance oversight process is derived from the NAMA Act 2009, which includes provision for codes of practice and public accountability. The NAMA Board has also adopted the Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies.

The corporate governance oversight process in respect of the National Assets Management Agency will be kept under review as the IBRC liquidation progresses.

IBRC Liquidation

 135. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the expected costs under the deposit guarantee scheme of the liquidation of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7903/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan It is understood that the total deposits held by IBRC was €323 million at 31 January 2013. The Special Liquidator submitted preliminary DGS information to the Central Bank on 12 February which estimates eligible deposits of €123 million. If the threshold for DGS qualification is mechanically applied (i.e. €100,000 per person), the payment in respect of DGS-covered deposits would be just over €30 million. The total DGS pay-out is likely to be significantly lower than this figure, however, after the Special Liquidator excludes accounts such as:-

- Accounts that have been legally pledged as security against other liabilities (in IBRC, NAMA or possibly other third parties);

- Accounts of Large Companies (only Small Companies, as defined in the Companies Act 1986, qualify for DGS pay-out).

It will take some weeks before the final pay-out figure will be known.

The aim of the Central Bank is to pay compensation within 20 working days to depositors who have been duly verified as eligible.

The Central Bank of Ireland maintains a Deposit Protection Account which will be used to fund any Deposit Guarantee Scheme pay-out. The current balance on this account is €388 million and this is funded by credit institutions who contribute 0.2% of their total deposits.

Government Bonds

 136. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the initial floating interest rate coupon on each tranche of Government bonds issued under the revised promissory note arrangements; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7904/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan As the Deputy will be aware the Irish Government Bonds that have been issued in exchange for the Promissory Notes are floating rate bonds. The coupon on these bonds is 6-month Euribor plus a margin ranging from 2.50% to 2.68%. On the 8th February 2013 the NTMA announced that following the agreement between the Government and the ECB, it had, at the direction of the Minister for Finance, completed the exchange with the Central Bank of Ireland of Irish Government Bonds for the Promissory Notes previously held by IBRC. As a result, the Minister for Finance’s liability under the Promissory Notes has been discharged and the Promissory Notes cancelled.

  For this purpose eight new Floating Rate Treasury Bonds for a total amount of €25 billion have been issued with maturities ranging from 25 to 40 years. The bonds will pay interest every six months (June and December) based on the 6-month Euribor interest rate plus an interest margin which averages 2.63% across the eight issues. Six month Euribor is currently 0.372%.


The initial floating interest rate coupon on each of the 8 tranches is as follows:

- a 5 year bond of €2bn maturing in 2038 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.50%;

- a 28 year bond of €2bn maturing in 2041 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.53%;

- a 30 year bond of €2bn maturing in 2043 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.57%;

- a 32 year bond of €3bn maturing in 2045 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.60%;

- a 34 year bond of €3bn maturing in 2047 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.62%;

- a 36 year bond of €3bn maturing in 2049 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.65%;

- a 38 year bond of €5bn maturing in 2051 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.67%; and

- a 40 year bond of €5bn maturing in 2053 with an interest rate of 6-month Euribor plus a margin of 2.68%.


This information is set out in tabular form on the NTMA’s website at the following link:
http://www.ntma.ie/news/ntma-issues-eight-new-floating-rate-treasury-bonds-in-exchange-for-promissory-notes/.

Treasury Bonds

 137. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the impact of a 1% rise in the Irish spread over six month EURIBOR on the projected savings under the revised promissory note arrangements; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7905/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan I can advise the Deputy that eight new Floating Rate Treasury Bonds have been issued to discharge the IBRC Promissory Notes liability consisting of:-

- a 25 year bond of €2bn maturing in 2038 with a spread of 2.50%;

- a 28 year bond of €2bn maturing in 2041 with a spread of 2.53%;

- a 30 year bond of €2bn maturing in 2043 with a spread of 2.57%;

- a 32 year bond of €3bn maturing in 2045 with a spread of 2.60%;

- a 34 year bond of €3bn maturing in 2047 with a spread of 2.62%;

- a 36 year bond of €3bn maturing in 2049 with a spread of 2.65%;

- a 38 year bond of €5bn maturing in 2051 with a spread of 2.67%; and

- a 40 year bond of €5bn maturing in 2053 with a spread of 2.68%.


The bonds will pay interest every six months (June and December).


This information is set out in tabular form on the NTMA’s website at the following link:
http://www.ntma.ie/news/ntma-issues-eight-new-floating-rate-treasury-bonds-in-exchange-for-promissory-notes/


The credit spreads on the bonds over Euribor were set on the date of issuance and as such will not vary in the future. Given the fixed nature of the spreads, a 1% increase in the Irish credit spread over six month Euribor will not impact upon the interest payment made by the State or the income received on the bonds by the Central Bank of Ireland. However, this may have mark-to-market implications with regard to the bonds held by the Central Bank of Ireland.

Central Bank of Ireland

 138. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the circumstances under which the Central Bank of Ireland will be permitted to exchange a portion of the new floating rate bonds issued under the revised promissory note arrangement for fixed coupon bonds; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7906/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan The Central Bank will sell these bonds but only when such a sale is not disruptive to financial stability. The limits of the option to exchange will be the amounts of the mandatory sales and the option lies with the Central Bank as a right but not an obligation. The Central Bank have undertaken that minimum of bonds will be sold in accordance with the following schedule:-

- €0.5bn by the end of 2014;

- €0.5bn per annum from 2015 to 2018;

- €1bn per annum from 2019 to 2023 and €2bn per annum from 2024 onwards.

IBRC Liquidation

 139. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the implications he expects arising from the liquidation of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation on outstanding legal actions against the institution; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7907/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan The effect of the IBRC Act was to place an immediate stay on claims against IBRC, including counter claims which do not give rise to a right of set off. New proceedings against IBRC can only be commenced with the leave of the Court. On the seventh of March the High Court is to consider submissions in respect of this issue and rule on whether the Court has a discretion to lift the stays placed on ongoing actions by operation of the Act. Litigants who succeed in actions against IBRC will rank as unsecured creditors in the liquidation. If a claimant is also a debtor of IBRC, and that debt is sold to NAMA or a third party buyer, such buyer will acquire that debt subject to that claimant’s pre-existing valid and enforceable claims and counterclaims that give rise to an enforceable right of set-off against the debt.

IBRC Liquidation

 140. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the implications for loans outstanding to former directors of Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide arising from the liquidation of Irish Bank Resolution Corporation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7908/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan As the Deputy will be aware of all debts owing to IBRC, including loans outstanding to former Directors, still remain due and payable in accordance with their terms. This includes loans that were advanced to former directors of Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide. All loan payments should continue to be made and all debts to IBRC remain due and payable in accordance with their terms. One of the objectives of the Special Liquidators will be to ensure the continued collection of all outstanding debts.

IBRC Liquidation

 141. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan his estimate of the amounts owed by the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation to unsecured creditors at the time of liquidation; if the IBRC loan books are sold at face value if the liquidator will be in a position to pay all unsecured creditors in full; his views on the situation in which losses were imposed by a State owned business on Irish suppliers of goods and services while no losses are taken by senior bondholders at that institution; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7909/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan As the Deputy will be aware, on 7th February 2013 the Oireachtas passed legislation (Irish Bank Resolution Corporation Act 2013), appointing joint Special Liquidators to IBRC (with immediate effect to wind up its business and operations). At this early stage of the special liquidation Special Liquidators are engaged in intensive processes which involve inter alia, asserting control over the businesses, processes, systems and personnel of IBRC. It is important that focus is placed on assessing, reorganising and restructuring the day–to-day activities of the Bank to meet the primary objective of ensuring the purpose of the special liquidation is achieved, as this is key to ensuring that value is extracted from the liquidation.


The Special Liquidators are currently agreeing all the creditors’ claims and it is therefore too early in the liquidation to ascertain the level of unsecured creditors.


To the extent that there are proceeds available after repayment in full of the NAMA debt these proceeds will be applied to the remaining creditors of IBRC who have not been paid. The Special Liquidators can confirm that the Companies Act’s priorities will apply in the liquidation process. The proceeds from the disposal of IBRC’s assets will be used to repay creditors subject to the normal legal priorities.


I thank the Deputy for his understanding in what is a crucial phase in the liquidation.

IBRC Liquidation

 142. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if all restructuring arrangements entered into by the Irish bank Resolution Corporation prior to its liquidation with its customers in respect of mortgage arrears will now remain in place; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7957/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan All restructuring arrangements entered into by Irish Bank Resolution Corporation Limited prior to its liquidation remain in place. The contractual terms and conditions of mortgage customers will not change as a result of the appointment of the Special Liquidators and all debts owing to IBRC (In Special Liquidation) remain due and enforceable.

IBRC Liquidation

 143. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan in the context of the liquidation of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, the current status of the IBRC, pre 2011, Defined Contribution Retirement Savings Plan; the impact of the liquidation on the benefits that will be paid to members of the scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7958/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan Unfortunately my Department has been unable to obtain the information requested by the Deputy in the time available. I will write to the Deputy directly with the information as soon as it becomes available.

IBRC Staff

 144. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if he will provide details of the termination payments that will be made to the former CEO of the Irish bank Resolution Corporation, in liquidation (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7959/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan Following the liquidation, all employment contracts in the Republic of Ireland have been terminated, including that of the former CEO, Mr Mike Aynsley. Mr Aynsley is entitled to apply for a statutory redundancy payment, a payment in respect of accrued but unused annual leave and a statutory notice payment, subject to the limits prescribed by statute.

IBRC Staff

 145. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if he will provide detail of the termination payments that will be made to former senior executives at the Irish bank Resolution Corporation, in liquidation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7960/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan Following the liquidation, all employment contracts in the Republic of Ireland have been terminated, including those of the former Senior Executives. The Senior Executives are entitled to apply for a statutory redundancy payment, a payment in respect of accrued but unused annual leave and a statutory notice payment, subject to the limits prescribed by statute.

Corporation Tax

 146. Deputy John Lyons Information on John Lyons Zoom on John Lyons asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if there was an effective corporate tax rate of 10%, what would the total tax take from corporation tax have been for 2010, 2011 and 2012; what it would be in 2013 and 2014; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7961/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan All companies in Ireland pay the standard 12.5% rate on their profits which are generated in Ireland. A higher 25% rate applies in respect of investment, rental and other non-trading profits and profits from certain petroleum, mining or land dealing activities. In a number of answers to previous Parliamentary Questions on this issue I have repeatedly stated that there is no agreed international methodology for calculating the ‘effective rate’ of corporation tax. With that in mind, I am unsure as to the premise of the Deputy’s question which seems to be that Ireland has an effective rate that is lower than 10%.


I am aware of recent media reports which refer to the ways that some companies structure their international tax affairs to minimise their tax costs, and the fact that some of these reports make reference to Irish companies being part of these structures. I understand that some of these reports have suggested that some companies in multinational groups pay Irish corporation tax at rates that are significantly lower than 12.5%.


At this point it is important to state clearly that such companies are not paying a low rate of Irish tax – as already stated all companies in Ireland pay the standard 12.5% rate on their profits which are generated in Ireland. The reports concerned appear to have incorrectly attributed to Ireland profits that represent the return due to assets in other jurisdictions, owned by group companies that are not resident in Ireland.


It is incorrect to relate the 12.5% corporation tax rate to both the profits of the Irish-resident group companies and the profits of foreign-resident group companies— which are not profits chargeable to Irish corporation tax. By mixing up the Irish profits and the foreign profits of multinational groups like this, these reports can produce an average tax rate for the companies concerned that is very significantly lower than 12.5% — and an incorrect inference that the full Irish profits are not being charged.

IBRC Liquidation

 147. Deputy Michael McGrath Information on Michael McGrath Zoom on Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if he will confirm the new contact details of the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation in special liquidation for the former bank's mortgage customers. [7968/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan I can advise the Deputy that a Freephone number, 1800 303 632 has been in place in recent days to advise customers on the immediate impact of the liquidation on their loans and deposits. Subsequent to this, IBRC have reopened their communications lines for customers and the Special Liquidators took over the aforementioned Freephone number from my Department on Tuesday of this week.

Tax Compliance

 148. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the number of reviews of taxpayers that have been undertaken by the Revenue Commissioners in each of the years since the self-assessment system was adopted; the number of these where a discrepancy was identified; the amount recovered from such cases; if he will outline the way the Revenue Commissioners are minimising the risk of fraud and error arising from the self-assessment method; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7979/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that all developed countries operate some form of self-assessment system for their business taxpayers. The Irish self-assessment system ensures that there are tight controls in place for tax return filing rates which are borne out by the timely filing rates of 98% for large cases, 95% for medium cases and 80% for all other cases, across all taxes. This strategy is supported by a comprehensive compliance programme of audits, risk management interventions, special investigations and prosecutions. I am further advised that, as Self-Assessment for income tax was introduced in 1988 and for corporation tax in 1989 and as the data is not maintained in a suitable format, it is not possible to provide all the details sought by the Deputy without an extensive examination of Revenue records. However, they have supplied me with the Tables below, which give comprehensive data for seven years from 2006 to 2012. The various interventions shown are not confined to direct taxes, and would include VAT, Excise etc. where relevant.

Type of InterventionNumbers Completed and  YieldNumbers Completed
and Yield
Numbers Completed and Yield
-2008 (€m)2007 (€m)2006 (€m)
Comprehensive (All taxhead)3,904 (262)3,875 (344.5)4,127 (436.2)
Single Tax/Duty Audits6,082 (184)6,603 (151.6) 6,305 (133.5)
Multi Tax/ Duty Audits2,065 (65)2,206 (71.2)1,757 (56.2)
Single Issue/Transaction Audits1,363 (59)1,624 (120.3)1,437 (23.8)
Total Audits13,414 (570)14,308 (687.6)13,626 (649.7)
Assurance Checks345,452 (63)237,626 (46.2)176,064  (42.1)
Total Interventions358,866 (633)251,934 (733.8)189,690  (691.8)
<

Type of Intervention Completed 2011Yield
€m
Completed 2010Yield
€m
Completed 2009Yield €m
Comprehensive (All taxheads)4,717183.64,209197.14,353279
Multi Tax/Duty Audits1,23661.61,37453.61,73563
Single Tax/Duty Audits3,345126.93,841111.65,053163
Single Issue/Transaction Audits1,76868.41,58472.4 

1,278
 

97
Total Audit Interventions11,066440.511,088434.7 

12,419
 

602
Assurance Checks546,50281.3454,79658.0361,48066
Total Interventions (Audit & Assurance) 

557,568
 

521.8
 

465,804
 

492.7
 

373,899
 

668
<

2012

Audit Interventions Completed 2012Yield 2012

€m
Comprehensive (All taxheads)4,687181.8
Multi Tax/Duty Audits   985 34.7
Single Tax/Duty Audits2,624 99.7
Single Issue/Transaction Audits   769 42.9
PAYE Compliance Interventions29,881 23.2
Risk Management Interventions125,073 87.7
Assurance Checks373,803 22.4
Total Compliance Interventions (Audit, Risk & Assurance)537,822492.4
<

The Commissioners also advise that these figures, year-on-year, are not directly comparable due to a re-labelling of compliance interventions and the continuing evolution of their compliance programmes to reflect changes in the economy and the efficient use of resources. Not all Revenue interventions take the form of formal audits or investigations and in accordance with their risk-based approach cases are selected for intervention based on the presence of various risk indicators. Each Revenue intervention is intended to be in the form which is most efficient in terms of time and resources, and which imposes the least cost on the taxpayer, whilst addressing the perceived risk and consequently Revenue carry out Risk Management Interventions, which take the form of Aspect Queries and Profile Interviews.

Revenue's objective in case working is to ensure that each case (taxpayer or business) is fully compliant with their legal obligations in relation to the keeping of proper books and records, the timely and accurate submission of required declarations and the prompt payment of tax and duty liabilities. This approach ensures that, as far as possible, the self-assessment system operates effectively and minimises instances of fraud or mistake.

The selection of cases in which to intervene is a critical step in Revenue’s compliance programme and case selection derives from a variety of sources. In addition to specific projects like the shadow economy project, Revenue also uses extensive third party data, good citizen’s reports and other intelligence to drive its compliance interventions. In the past two years, Revenue has also been using advanced analytics to help it identify indicators of fraud or error from taxpayer’s filings and they are regarded as a leading tax administration in the deployment of these technologies.

I am also informed that a major focus of Revenue’s activities in relation to self-assessed cash businesses is to tackle shadow economy activities including the suppression of sales, wages and income by registered businesses and fraudulent repayment claims. It is a multi-faceted issue that requires a co-ordinated and varied response.

Revenue tackles the problem of the shadow economy through its range of compliance and audit interventions including through targeted special projects. Case interventions are undertaken based on Revenue’s assessment of compliance risks, the level of those risks and other relevant information available. Revenue is using a wide range of methodologies to identify those operating in the shadow economy and is deploying the full range of compliance interventions.

The Deputy will be aware of the continuing strengthening of legislation to provide for a robust framework within which the Revenue Commissioners may tackle tax evasion, including recent provisions relating to the making of returns of transactions by merchant acquirers, and other payment settlement organisations, to the Revenue Commissioners and Regulations, introduced in 2011, requiring Government Departments and State Bodies to supply details to the Revenue Commissioners of payments made.

Revenue investigations have also detected the use of computer programmes or electronic devices to alter or conceal sales records. To counteract these risks, legislation was also enacted in 2011 providing penalties for the possession, use or supply of automated sales suppression devices known as "zappers" for the purpose of evading tax.

I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that the results from all the various projects undertaken by Revenue are reflected in the general audit and compliance results from audits, assurance checks, and other risk management intervention which are published in Revenue’s Annual Report. The high level of success in securing settlements is a reflection of the targeted approach used by Revenue which is to focus its compliance resources on the areas of greatest risk. An associated strategy is to minimise the number of contacts with compliant taxpayers.

I am confident that the Revenue Commissioners have a very clear focus to target and confront those who do not comply, as set out in their Statement of Strategy for 2011 to 2013.

Hospital Equipment

 149. Deputy Róisín Shortall Information on Róisín Shortall Zoom on Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan if the use by hospital consultants of public health facilities for work for which they charge private-patient fees is taxable as a benefit in kind and if not the reason for same and his estimate of the yield that would arise if it were [7980/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan A benefit in kind charge under the provisions of Section 118 TCA 1997 arises where an employer incurs expense in the provision of living or other accommodation, entertainment, domestic or other services, or other benefits or facilities of whatever nature. The charge is based on the amount of the expense that is not made good to the employer by the employee. Facilities provided to hospital consultants for use in their private practice can include equipment, premises and staff. Determining the expense incurred by the employer in the provision of these facilities is particularly difficult. For example, the value of the use of hospital premises is defined as the annual rent that might be expected to be obtained on a yearly letting. In the case of a specialised building such as a hospital this would be difficult to ascertain. In the case of other assets such as machinery the value of the use of the machinery is taken to be 5% of its market value. Again, this would be difficult to determine given the nature of the equipment in a hospital.

Hospital facilities are not provided solely to enable the consultants to carry on private practice in the hospitals concerned. Clearly, the primary purpose of the provision of the facilities is to enable the consultant to treat public patients.

The difficulty in determining a benefit in kind charge is further compounded by the fact that the facilities can be shared by a number of consultants to varying degrees and that usage can vary depending on the availability of a consultant and the extent to which his or her specialist services may be required. Taking all these factors together it is difficult to establish for each individual consultant a charge that reflects the benefit received. Given that benefit in kind is operated via the PAYE system attempting to quantify a charge would impose a significant burden on payroll departments.

The application of benefit in kind in these circumstances is complicated but I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that this particular issue is under active consideration.

In the circumstances it is not possible to estimate the yield from the imposition of a benefit in kind charge.

Insurance Coverage

 150. Deputy Noel Grealish Information on Noel Grealish Zoom on Noel Grealish asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan further to Parliamentary Question No. 254 of 29 January 2013, if he will intervene with insurance companies with reference to the provision of flood cover for persons who previously made a flood claim under their insurance, but have since relocated to a new home and cannot secure flood insurance as a result of their previous claim; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7981/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan As indicated in my reply of 29 January 2013, the issue of provision of new flood cover or the renewal of existing flood cover is a commercial matter for insurance companies, which has to be based on a proper assessment of the risks they are accepting. The Deputy will recall that these are often considered on a case by case basis and it is important to be clear that neither the Government nor the Central Bank has any influence over this matter. Consequently I am not in a position to direct insurance companies to provide flood cover to specific individuals. My Department has however made enquiries with the Irish Insurance Federation (IIF) about the provision of flood cover in the circumstance you have described. While indicating that the decision to provide flood cover or not is a matter for each insurance company, their general view is that if the new home is in a low risk area from a flooding perspective then a good broker should be able to place the cover with an insurance company.

Departmental Expenditure

 151. Deputy Joan Collins Information on Joan Collins Zoom on Joan Collins asked the Minister for Finance Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan the total amount spent on outsourced security services in each Government Department; and if he will provide details of the companies providing these services. [7987/13]

Minister for Finance (Deputy Michael Noonan): Information on Michael Noonan Zoom on Michael Noonan In response to the Deputy’s question my Department provides shared accommodation services to the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. In the period January 2012 to 31 December 2012 no money was spent on outsourced security services in respect of buildings occupied by staff of either the Department. Spend on outsourcing of security services in other Departments is a matter for each Department and subject to oversight not by the Department of Finance but rather the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform. I am informed by the Revenue Commissioners that the total spend on the provision of outsourced security services for Revenue in 2012 was €2,064,223. The following companies provided these services:-

Sovereign Security Ltd.
Night Eyes Security Service
GGL Security
Group 4 Security
S-Security Group Ltd.
Lodge Service (Dublin) Ltd
ISS Ireland Ltd
Noonan Services Ltd
Orbit Security


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