374. Deputy Seán Ó Fearghaíl asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the Garda station in Kilcock in County Kildare; if she will address the concerns of local residents regarding the insufficient Garda presence at that location, and the insufficient number of public opening hours of this Garda station; her plans to increase the opening hours of said Garda station; the number of full-time members of An Garda Síochána assigned to this station; her plans to increase numbers of gardaí in County Kildare, in particular, in this Garda station; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12723/15]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of personnel, among the Garda Regions, Divisions, and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continuing review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the best possible use is made of these resources.
I have been informed by the Garda Commissioner that the personnel strength of Kildare Garda Division on 31 January 2015, the latest date for which figures are readily available, was 301 of which 9 Garda are assigned to Kilcock Garda Station. There are also 41 Garda Reserves and 28 Civilians attached to the Division. The opening hours of Kilcock Garda Station are, subject to manpower availability, from 7.00 p.m. to 9.00 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. There is also a public access call box (PACB) for the Kilcock Garda station with calls diverted to Leixlip Garda Station which is a 24 hour Garda station.
The first intake since 2009 of 100 new recruits entered training at the Garda College, Templemore, on 15th September 2014. As part of Budget 2015, a further intake of 200 recruits in two batches was announced. On 15 December 2014, the first 100 of these recruits commenced their training. The remaining 100 entered the college in early February. This will bring to 300 the number of recruits in the Garda College and is a measure of the Government's commitment to ensure that recruitment to An Garda Síochána continues seamlessly. The September intake will attest as members of the Garda Síochána in May 2015 and the December and February intakes will attest in August 2015 and October respectively. On attestation they will be assigned to Garda stations throughout the country by the Garda Commissioner and the needs of Kildare Garda Division will be fully considered.