The Minister for Justice and Law Reform, Dermot Ahern T.D., said today that the capital budget provided for his sector will give scope to expand and develop infrastructure and facilities over the coming years.

Minister Ahern said that it was intended to continue investment in the Justice sector which had, in recent years, funded new Courthouses, Garda stations and Prisons infrastructure. In addition, state of the art and leading edge information technology systems have been provided across the various organisations in the sector.

The capital budget of €80 million provided for the Justice Votes in today’s budget is the first tranche of a total capital investment of €330 million in the Justice sector in the period 2011 to 2014.

Minister Ahern said: "Significantly this investment will ensure that progress is continued in relation to the following key projects: 

- the provision of additional prison places including the phased development of the new prison campus at Thornton Hall and an extension to the Midlands Prison in Portlaoise

- continued maintenance and upgrade of Garda ICT facilities, including the commencement of the development of a new Major Investigation System for the investigation and detection of serious crimes

- completion of a state of the art laboratory for the State Pathology Service in a joint venture with Dublin City Council

- the development of new juvenile detention facilities at Oberstown

- capital funding will also be provided to the Courts Service and the Property Registration Authority for continued investment in ICT, thus continuing the significant efficiency improvements and range of services provided in recent years."

7 December 2010