Updated: 09/10/17 : 06:05:43Printable Version
Box has all but vanished in Sligo for motorists seeking to escape penalty points.
There were 74 uses of it locally from January 2015 to last month, Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan told the Dáil last week.
But there has been a countrywide collapse in the option when motorists appear in district courts for motoring offences.
Just one Sligo motorist made a Poor Box donation and avoided penalty points in the first nine months of this year.
were four such cases locally last year, while in 2015 seventy motorists
before Sligo Court were able to avoid penalty points after a donation,
Dáil stats confirmed.
Independent TD Tommy Broughan wanted to know why the Poor Box donations were ''still happening.''
However, across the country there has been a massive 70% drop in the use of the Poor Box since January 2015, the TD was told.
Poor Box was not established in statute and district court judges
across Ireland had discretion in nominating it for a donation rather
than recording convictions.
local charities also relied in recent decades on such Poor Box donations
to make up for sizeable shortfalls in State funding.
However, Ministers and TDs increasingly frowned on such usage in lieu of motorists getting penalty points.
Legislation currently being drafted will abolish the Poor Box and replace it with a Reparation Fund, said Minister Flanagan.
This will ''provide for a fair, equitable and transparent system of reparation,' ' he said.
''It will apply only to minor offences dealt with by the District Court,'' Minister Flanagan added.