288. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the status of discussions of the high level task force on quads and scramblers which his Department is participating in with the Dublin local authorities; the number of times it has met; the initial recommendations it is bringing forward; if it is recommending legislative changes regarding Garda seizure powers; if the task force is considering recommendations regarding legislation providing for a minimum age of ownership, registration and effective deterrents for when they are used in non-legal situations; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [41967/18]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I can inform the Deputy that the task force has met on two occasions to date, on 21 June and 13 September 2018. The next meeting will take place on 14 November 2018.
My Department has consulted with a considerable number of Government Departments and public bodies over the past number of months to identify a number of relevant pieces of legislation, which have been brought to the attention of the Office of the Attorney General (OAG), to determine whether any legislative amendments are necessary to assist in curbing activity insofar as scramblers and quad bikes are concerned, without giving rise to any unintended negative legislative consequences.
While the high-level task force has not adopted any formal legislative recommendations, I am advised that it has given consideration to the issues raised in the Deputy’s question, and these discussions have informed the aforementioned correspondence with the OAG.
With particular regard to a minimum age of ownership, I would emphasise that the supply of mechanically propelled vehicles to persons under the ages of 16 and 17 (depending on the vehicle) constitute offences in accordance with section 30 of the Road Traffic Act 2004.
I will be happy to provide the Deputy with a further update on this matter at a later stage.