30 in total have been assigned
The Kilkenny/Carlow Garda contingent has been boosted by the addition of 30 newly attested members to date this year, according to the Justice Minister.
Sinn Féin's John Brady asked the Minister for the number of new gardaí allocated to each Garda division in 2017.
In a written response, Minister Charlie Flanagan said: “As the Deputy will appreciate, it is the Garda Commissioner who is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and I, as Minister, have no direct role in the matter.
“Garda management keeps this distribution of resources under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the optimum use is made of these resources.
“The Government has put in place a plan for an overall Garda workforce of 21,000 personnel by 2021 comprising 15,000 Garda members, 2,000 Reserve members and 4,000 civilians. We are making real, tangible progress on achieving this goal.”
Since the reopening of the Garda College in September 2014, just under 1,600 recruits have attested as members of An Garda Síochána and have been assigned to mainstream duties nationwide.
Garda numbers taking account of projected retirements, will increase to around the 13,500 mark by year end - a net increase of 500 since the end of 2016.
Minister Flanagan added: “The moratorium on recruitment introduced in 2010 resulted in a significant reduction in the strength of An Garda Síochána.
“We are now rebuilding the organisation and providing the Commissioner with the resources needed to deploy increasing numbers of Gardaí across every Division in the coming years.
“It is important to keep in mind that newly attested Gardaí have a further 16 months of practical and class-room based training to complete in order to receive their BA in Applied Policing.
“To ensure that they are properly supported and supervised and have opportunities to gain the breadth of policing experience required, the Commissioner's policy is to allocate them to specially designated training stations which have the required training and development structures and resources in place, including trained Garda tutors and access to a permanently appointed supervisory Sergeant who is thoroughly familiar with their responsibilities under the training programme”
In October the Kilkenny People reported that Kilkenny/Carlow Garda numbers hit a four year high with the division boasting 320 members at the time across all ranks in the two counties.