26. Deputy Mick Wallace asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality her plans to strengthen the current legislation which established the Policing Authority, in particular with regard to oversight and accountability, following the ongoing crises surrounding senior Garda management; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [15695/17]
Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): The establishment of the new Policing Authority has been both a welcome and necessary addition to the policing landscape in the State. It has brought a dedicated layer of public accountability to the operation of policing services and it represents one of the most significant and progressive reforms to the justice sector over recent years. Indeed, the recent transfer of the appointment function in relation to the senior ranks is a particularly important signal of this reform.
I strongly believe in the relatively short time since its establishment that the Authority is making a significant impact.
Since its establishment, it has focused, as a matter of priority, on its functions which have statutory deadlines and reform significance.
The Authority is, of course, playing a crucial role in relation to issues which have arisen recently in the area of roads policing.
While there are no immediate plans for changes in the legislation governing the Authority, the Deputy will be aware that the Government has indicated its intention to have a fundamental review in relation to policing matters.