The Government Secretariat comes under the remit of the Department of the Taoiseach. The role of Government Secretariat is to co-ordinate the business of Government including the preparation of the agenda; the circulation of papers; and the communication of decisions. Operating on the basis of the written procedures set down in the Cabinet Handbook, Government Secretariat plays a vital role in ensuring the communication and co-ordination required for Government business.
The central mechanism in this process is through Memoranda for Government which are prepared by the sponsoring Department. The Memorandum to Government is the central policy co-ordination mechanism, requiring as it does Departments to consult with other interested Departments well in advance of Government consideration and to include in the Memorandum their views and a response. Thus, in considering an issue the Government will have the benefit of prior consultation and discussion at Departmental level which allows the Government to concentrate on the key strategic issues requiring decision.