Decentralisation Programme Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation
The Government decided in 2004 to relocate 250 posts within the Department to Carlow as part of its decentralisation programme. With effect from 30 July 2007, the Department moved approximately 100 staff to Carlow to a purpose built, interim office situated on O'Brien Road, Carlow.
Business Units/Offices to be relocated to Carlow
The following Business Units/ Offices were earmarked for decentralisation:
• Companies Registration Office/Registry of Friendly Societies
• National Employment Rights Authority (NERA)
• Redundancy Payments Section
• Insolvency Payments Section
In May 2010 the name of the Department was changed and certain functions were transferred to other Government Departments including the Redundancy Payments Section and the Insolvency Payments Section, which were transferred to the Department of Social Protection.
Because of delays in constructing a permanent office in Carlow, the Department succeeded in moving approximately 100 staff to Carlow to a purpose built, interim office on O'Brien Road, Carlow with effect from 30 July 2007. The advance move to Carlow involved just over 100 staff - 64 from the National Employment Rights Authority (NERA) and 36 staff from a section of the Companies Registration Office, together with a small number of support staff.
The OPW issued a press release in December 2007 confirming the name of the consortium that had been invited to become the “successful tenderer” in respect of the Public/ Private/ Partnership (PPP) project for the Department's permanent offices in Carlow. An Bord Pleanála decided on 11 November 2008, to grant planning permission for the Department's permanent office in Carlow, subject to certain conditions, including the sixth floor car park being omitted. The OPW then advised the Department that, subject to achieving financial close and contract signing, it was anticipated that construction would start on site in late 2009 with a 21.5 months construction and fit-out period giving a completion date in 2011.
Decentralisation projects deferred
The Minister for Finance announced in the context of the 2009 Budget that certain construction projects, including this Department’s decentralised offices in Carlow, were to be deferred on affordability grounds pending an overall review of the Decentralisation Programme in late 2011.
The Decentralisation Programme was also deferred in respect of five of the Department’s agencies i.e. Enterprise Ireland, FÁS, National Standards Authority of Ireland and the National Consumer Agency pending a review in 2011. This decision was announced on Budget Day 14 October 2008.
Review of Decentralisation Programme by new Government
In November 2011 the Government reviewed the decentralisation programme and decided that decentralisation projects where no progress had been made should be cancelled. It also decided that projects with permanent accommodation, where the staffing had been substantially completed, should be left in situ and would be managed in the same way as regionally based offices of Departments. Insofar as projects where temporary accommodation has been provided (including this Department’s decentralisaton project for Carlow), these projects would be submitted to government following a review of their viability and future prospects by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, in liaison with relevant Departments and the OPW, having regard to the current budgetary and staffing constraints affecting the public service generally.
For further information on the Government’s decentralisation programme, click www.decentralisation.gov.ie .
Last modified: 14/12/2011