Saturday 24 June 2017

In brief: Outgoing TDs billed €139,000 for use of Dail offices during general election

OUTGOING TDs were charged €139,000 for using their Dail offices during the general election campaign. The TDs were charged for the use of phone, photocopying, stationary and -- most expensive of all -- redeploying secretarial or parliamentary assistants to campaign duty.

Former Green Party leader John Gormley was billed for €4,268 -- €3,000 of which accounted for work carried out by his parliamentary secretary and €340 for overnight Leinster House accommodation.

Kilkenny TD Phil Hogan was billed €5,151 -- €1,700 for secretarial assistance, €2,200 for his parliamentary assistant and €1,000 for use of office equipment and post.

Brendan Howlin was charged €6,128 -- almost €5,000 was for using his secretarial and parliamentary assistants for election work. He was also charged €12.34 for stationary, €18.39 for photocopying, and €540 for post.

All outstanding monies have since been paid.

Haughey's yacht sails into new home

CELTIC Mist, the yacht once sailed by the late Charles Haughey, arrived at its new home in Co Clare yesterday.

The 52ft vessel, was donated to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group by the Haughey family last April, and is the latest addition to Ireland's maritime research fleet.

She was met in the Shannon Estuary yesterday by a flotilla of boats as she sailed into Kilrush Creek Marina.

Harry Boland bullet sells for €3,000

A BULLET said to have been taken from Harry Boland's body at St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin, on July 31, 1922, has sold at auction for €3,000 plus commission -- almost €2,000 above its estimate price.

Kieran O'Boyle, of auctioneers Adam's, said the bullet will remain in Ireland and was bought last Tuesday by a private collector who did not wished to be named.

According to Mr O'Boyle, the purchaser bought the bullet "was because of its great historical significance".

Boland was shot while attempting to escape arrest by Free State soldiers. He died several days later.

The bullet was kept in a sealed envelope at St Vincent's by the Sisters of Charity, who later handed it over to Kitty Lowry, a supervisor at the hospital who was once an active member of Cumann na mBan.

No winner of €2.7m Lotto jackpot

THERE was no winner in last night's €2,671,277 Lotto draw. The numbers were 2, 4, 14, 15, 20, 21 (bonus 10).

There were two Match 5+bonus winners, who each receive €25,000; 81 Match 5s (€966); 218 Match 4+bonus (€90); 2,974 Match 4s (€41); 4,899 Match 3+bonus (€16); and 43,383 Match 3s (€5 each). The Lotto Plus 1 numbers were 14, 23, 39, 43, 44, 45 (bonus 3) and Lotto Plus 2 numbers were 3, 10, 15, 23, 33, 35 (bonus 29).

And the winning numbers in the UK draw for £6.1m were 4, 9, 13, 15, 18, 40 (bonus 30).

Rehn backs better bailout conditions

The EU commissioner for economic and monetary affairs Olli Rehn has said the EU bailout package should be made more flexible to help Ireland recover faster.

He called for the interest rates on Ireland's loans to be cut and the maturity of the debt to be lengthened. He made the comments in today's Sunday Business Post.

Eurozone ministers agreed last week to lengthen the maturity of debt and lower the interest rate on loans from the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF), in an attempt to bring the European debt crisis under control.

Ireland has borrowed €17.7bn from the EFSF as part of its €85bn bailout.

McManus on course for 2015 Pro-Am

THE biggest sporting charity event in the world is still on track for 2015. Held once every five years, the JP McManus Invitational Pro-Am -- which attracts the world's greatest golf players and A-list Hollywood stars -- has, to date, collected over €90m for numerous Irish charities.

And just over a year after he helped to raise €40m at the 2010 event in Adare, Co Limerick, Mr McManus was optimistic about a fifth successive fundraiser even if he was keeping his cards close to his chest.

"We found maybe having it every five years that people were prepared to give it everything -- once in five years. But let's see what it will be like in 12 or 18 months' time and we will make a decision then," Mr McManus said.

Rioters and police clash in the North

Up to 100 people were involved in sectarian violence in Portadown, Co Armagh, early Friday morning as rioters in a loyalist district attacked police with petrol bombs and bricks. Police responded by firing 19 plastic bullets.

Locals said violence flared after police removed flags flying near a peace line. The PSNI said a peaceful protest had been hijacked by a small group intent on trouble.

There are concerns that the rioting could continue for another week until the traditional 'Twelfth fortnight' ends.

Nama to invest €3m in ghost estates

THE State's bad bank Nama is to spend €3m to shore up some of the country's ghost estates linked to Nama loans. But it refused to identify any of the estates which will benefit from the cash injection.

Nama said yesterday it has agreed to invest the money to fund "urgent construction work" in a number of estates and added it was working closely with Housing Minister Willie Penrose and the Deptartment of the Environment.

A recent survey of ghost estates identified that of 221 worst cases, only 28 were linked to Nama loans.

Heart charity in blind-date fundraiser

A fundraising event for the Irish Heart Foundation will take place at The Vaults in the IFSC, Dublin on July 28. Organisers of 'Take Me Out' are still looking for male and female volunteers for blind dates with contestants. Tickets are €5. For details, email info@the vaults.ie.

Architect leaves €3.85m in his will

THE well-known architect and conservationist Uinseann MacEoin, of The Heath, Portlaoise, Co Laois, left €3,850,706 in his will.

Other wills include: Carmel Herterich, Aughnacurra, Dangan Lower, Galway, €3,371,036; Maura Day, farmer, Whitegate House, Whitegate, Co Cork, €2,152,671; Thomas Clohosey, farmer, Seven Sisters, Johnstown, Co Kilkenny, €1,552,171; and Jack Walsh, farmer, Ballyboggan, Clonard, Enfield, Co Meath, €1,398,148.

The value of wills include property, including the family home, and should not be regarded as cash amounts

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