Dáil Éireann - Volume 637 - 26 June, 2007

Written Answers. - Legislative Programme.

Deputy Richard Bruton asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government when he plans to introduce legislation to govern the management of apartment complexes; and the penalties that will be incurred by management companies if they fail to complete their duties. [17367/07]

[578] Deputy Leo Varadkar asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government when he will introduce legislation to regulate residential management companies; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [17756/07]

  Deputy John Gormley: I propose to take Questions Nos. 758 and 779 together.

These questions cover a variety of issues which will be advanced in accordance with the commitments of Programme for Government regarding apartment complex management companies. The range of work involves action by a number of Government Departments and agencies. An inter-departmental committee, convened by the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform, is considering legislative responses to issues generally relating to property management companies. My Department is represented on this committee and will make every possible contribution to its work.

The Government have already decided that property managing agents will be regulated by the Property Services Regulatory Authority under legislation currently being prepared by the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. Property managing agents are commercial firms engaged by management companies to provide management and maintenance services for which management charges are paid.

Residential property management companies, consisting of owners of dwellings, are generally constituted under the Companies Acts and are required to operate in compliance with company law. The Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment is bringing forward legislative proposals to update company law generally. Appropriate changes to company law provisions relevant to management companies would fall to be provided for in that context.

A range of legal issues relating to multi-unit developments is being examined by the Law Reform Commission, which published a consultation paper on the matter last December. The final report of the Law Reform Commission, which it is hoped will be published later this year, will help to inform decisions on the appropriate legislative responses to the various issues arising in relation to management companies.