Voting machines set to go - Gormley

 

ELECTRONIC VOTING equipment that cost the State some €50 million but has never been commissioned is now likely to be cast off completely, the Minister for the Environment John Gormley has confirmed.

Mr Gormley said that a task force that has been examining disposal options for the machines will soon complete its work.

Mr Gormley told RTÉ that the decision to jettison the controversial project was the correct one.

In a response to a parliamentary question from Labour’s Ciarán Lynch, Mr Gormley said that priority was to “achieve the maximum recovery cost”. But he accepted that selling the machines on might prove problematic.

He said that some 60 per cent (4,762) of the machines are stored at Gormanston Army base. The cost of storing the remaining 40 per cent came to €204,000 in 2008. “Machines are stored at 13 local premises that were originally identified by Returning Officers . . . all machines will be removed from their present locations when arrangements for disposal are implemented,” he said.

“Buying our way out of these crazy deals has not been tackled at all,” said Mr Lynch. “While the Minister is claiming that work on this is under way, that’s really not good enough at this stage.”