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Just 151 Gateway dole jobs out of a total of 835 are filled

DUBLIN local authorities are a long way off filling their quota of dole employees via the controversial Gateway scheme, the Herald can reveal.

Some 151 people are currently working for the four Dublin councils, mostly in manual labour roles, in Gateway positions - less than a fifth of the total number of jobs that they've been tasked with filling.

The scheme, which is the brainchild of the Department of Social Protection, set the four local authorities a target of 835 positions to be filled by the year's end. A payment of €20 is made on top of a Gateway worker's dole - the equivalent of around €1 per hour.

They are contracted to work for 22 months and are required to put in 19.5 hours a week.

If a person refuses to take up a job they could see their benefits cut or stopped altogether.

The majority of the work is based outside, such as landscaping or "village enhancement".

Fingal County Council is leading the way in the capital with 97 people on the scheme. But this is still less than half of its 2014 quota.

Meanwhile, South Dublin County Council is faring the worst at the moment with just 18 people currently employed through the scheme.

In Dublin city just 26 of the 295 mandated positions are filled. Dun Laoghaire Rathdown has the lowest target in Dublin to fill: 110 roles but just 14 people have signed up.