Dáil Éireann - Volume 522 - 28 June, 2000
Written Answers. - Publication of Report.
Mr. G. Mitchell Mr. G. Mitchell
217. Mr. G. Mitchell asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform if, further to parliamentary Question No. 85 of 6 May 1999 in which he stated that it is intended that the group will furnish its report for consideration by the Minister for Finance prior to the summer recess, he will now inform Dáil Éireann when this group will furnish its report to him; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18636/00]
Mr. O'Donoghue Mr. O'Donoghue
Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform (Mr. O'Donoghue): An interdepartmental review group, chaired by an official from my Department, is currently examining the reliefs available under the disabled drivers and disabled passengers – tax concessions – scheme. The scheme provides reliefs from vehicle registration tax and value added tax on vehicles and from excise duty on fuel to drivers and passengers who are severely and permanently physically disabled.
In order that it would benefit from as full a range as possible of experience of the scheme the review group were asked to hold more extensive consultations than originally envisaged and this involved the placing of advertisements in the national newspapers seeking written submissions from members of the public concerning the scheme. To date, 240 persons have responded to the advertisements, reflecting over 60 different disabilities.
Having regard to the level of response from the public to its request for submissions, the review group anticipates that the report will be completed in August 2000.
The members of the group have held detailed meetings with representatives of various organisations and with a number of persons, who had indicated a desire to make oral submissions to them.
The insights obtained from an analysis of the oral and written submissions, when added to the knowledge already gained from the submissions which it received from members of the public and from public representatives, will facilitate the group in bringing its work to a conclusion and in finalising its report for consideration by the Minister for Finance.
While the process has been somewhat delayed by the extensive consultation that has taken place, I am satisfied that due to the complex nature of the issues it was important to hold this  wide consultation phase to ensure that all people with disabilities and interested parties had an opportunity to contribute to the review.
Dáil Éireann 522 Written Answers. Publication of Report.