Dáil Éireann - Volume 580 - 17 February, 2004

Written Answers - Departmental Funding.

  279. Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Education and Science the number of contracts or procurements funded directly or indirectly by his Department during the past seven years in respect of which cost overruns have occurred; the [325] full extent of such overruns; the cause or causes of same; the action taken to prevent a reoccurrence; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4545/04]

  Mr. N. Dempsey: My Department engages with over 4000 schools, colleges and other institutions largely without any intermediate tier. This can give rise to contractual arrangements covering employment and procurement of goods and services. In the case of its own operations the Department also enters contracts.

The largest single area of contractual activity is the schools building programme where contracts in any one year can exceed 2,000 in number ranging from minor works to projects of more significant scale. In the third level sector a significant number of contracts have also been entered into during the course of the past seven years.

The information sought by the Deputy is not readily available. In all the circumstances the Deputy will appreciate that the compilation of such wide ranging data is such that it would require the diversion of scarce staff resources which could not be justified in this instance. If the Deputy has a query in respect of a particular contract or procurement, I would be happy to provide the information.