Dáil Éireann - Volume 649 - 04 March, 2008
Written Answers. - Garda Equipment.
Deputy Jimmy Deenihan Deputy Jimmy Deenihan
Deputy Jimmy Deenihan asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the cost to date in the creation and functioning of the PULSE system; the original predicted cost of the PULSE system; if the system is fully or partially functioning; when those aspects of PULSE which are not functioning at present are expected to be brought on-line; if all Garda  stations and associated locations have been connected to PULSE; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9076/08]
Deputy Tom Sheahan Deputy Tom Sheahan
Deputy Tom Sheahan asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the action he has taken to have shortcomings in PULSE addressed, particularly in the context of prosecuting limited companies; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9057/08]
Deputy Brian Lenihan Deputy Brian Lenihan
Deputy Brian Lenihan: I propose to take Questions Nos. 118 and 168 together.
I have been assured by the Garda authorities that the Garda Information System which includes PULSE is functioning very satisfactorily. Significant investment has been made to improve availability and response times and I am advised that as a result, since the beginning of 2007, there has been virtually no unplanned downtime. The PULSE system is more widely available than ever before, with access by both Garda and civilian personnel to over 2000 personal computers in 338 locations, including every Divisional and District Headquarters. The Deputies will be aware that the Garda Information Services Centre (GISC), which is based in Castlebar, allows Gardaí, who would otherwise have to return to their station to input or update incident data, to log the information over the telephone with the GISC, thus releasing Garda resources for visible, frontline policing across our communities.
The functionality of the PULSE system is continually upgraded and enhanced to accommodate new business requirements, policies and procedures as well as updates to reflect new legislation. I am advised by the Garda authorities that functionality in relation to the prosecution of limited companies will be provided in the next release of the system, which is scheduled to be deployed by mid-year. This new functionality will replace the current manual process used by the Garda Síochána to prosecute limited companies.
The original estimated budget for PULSE back in 1993 was in the region of €46.4m (£36.5m Punts). The system was developed over a number of phases and an number of additional items arose over the course of the project such as the need for additional external resources, costs associated with the Year 2000 and the provision of backup facilities. These additional items brought the total development cost of the system by 2001 to €61.3m. The Garda authorities advise that the average annual maintenance and upgrade costs for PULSE from 2001 to the end of 2006 amounted to €12.88m. This expenditure includes the cost of contract resources, replacement of hardware, software upgrades and software licence fees. Following the completion of a comprehensive stabilisation programme and hardware upgrade for the PULSE system in 2006, PULSE was amalgamated with other systems including the Fixed Charge Processing System (FCPS) to form a new combined IT system referred to as the Garda Information System (GIS). Accordingly, since the start of 2007, specific figures relating to expenditure on PULSE are not available.
Dáil Éireann 649 Written Answers. Garda Equipment.