The Department of Justice has introduced a series of cutbacks to save €11m across 20 bodies.

Garda overtime is to be reduced by over €28m to €80m in 2009. More than a quarter of that has been ring-fenced for Operation Anvil and is therefore to be spent on gangland crime.

There is also to be a reduction next year in the number of Garda recruits from over 1,000 this year to 400 next year.

Much of the savings in the Department of Justice are to be made in the area of equality and law reform. The National Crime Council and the National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism have been abolished.

Funding for the Equality Authority has been cut by 43%, while the budget for the Human Rights Commission has been reduced by 24%. In addition both organisations are to fully integrate office facilities and administrative services. The Film Censor's Office and Censorship of Publications Office are also to be amalgamated.

The membership of prison visiting committees is to be cut from 12 to nine, but the Minister says the prison building programme is to continue with 300 extra spaces to be provided at Wheatfield and Portlaoise. Funding for the new security measures and the mobile phone blocking system has not been affected.

An extra €1.5m is to be given to the Criminal Assets Bureau. €18m is to be spent on new forensic science facilities and the State Pathology Laboratory and €10m is to be spent on the new fixed speed camera system.

Meanwhile, the Minister for Defence Willie O'Dea has said he regrets the closure of four army border posts. St Bricin's Military Hospital in Dublin is also being shut down.

Proceeds from the eventual sale of the barracks will be spent on further modernisation in the Defence Forces.

Recruitment to the Defence Forces is also being slowed down for the next few years in order to stay within a new allocation for pay.

The four barracks being closed are in Monaghan and Longford as well as Rockhill and Lifford in Donegal - where the 130 personnel in each post will transfer to Finner Camp.

The 60 staff in St Bricin's Hospital will move to the Curragh, 200 personnel in Monaghan transfer to Dundalk, and the 130 soldiers in Longford move to Athlone.

Mr O'Dea said the withdrawal of British army deployments, and reduced paramilitary activity, had removed the rationale for having seven barracks along the border.

While final decisions about the purchase of three new vessels for the Naval Service will not be taken until next year, Mr O'Dea said it was inevitable that the normal 30-year life of the existing ships will have to be extended.