Sinn Féin - On Your Side

Stormont Security measures cost £650,000

19 June, 2008

Sinn Féin South Down MLA, Willie Clarke has questioned the value for money after it was disclosed that the recent added security measures around Parliament Buildings cost an estimated £650,000.

Mr Clarke said:

"Following numerous complaints from members of the public about the extent of security encountered when visiting Parliament Buildings I requested a breakdown of the cost associated with the recently increased security measures. I was astounded to learn that even though the work has been completed that not only has the cost not been finalised but has yet to be agreed. I would have thought that if this work went through a proper tendering process that a predetermined contract price would have been agreed.

"In answer to my question I received an estimated cost figure of some £650,000 and an annual running cost of over £400,000 - over 90% of which is to cover PSNI presence. Not only do I believe that this was money not well spent but I believe that it would have been better if it had been spent making the Assembly more accessible to the general public by providing facilities that would attract more visitors rather than make it so unwelcoming that people say they would not recommend it to their friends." ENDS

Note to Editors

AQW (7472/08)

Full costs have not yet been finalized as accounts are still being received and agreed. However current estimated costs are:

Search Facility £34,674
Building Works £41,740
Associated Services £97,855
Railings/Gates/Fences £146,621
PA system upgrade £31,979
X-ray equipment £123,000
PSNI presence £181,191.27

The annual running costs are estimated to be as follows:

Search Facility £1,200 - 1,400
PSNI presence £396K - year 1
PA system £1,200 - 1,400
X-ray equipment £5,625 - year 1

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