In brief: Reilly 'doesn't agree with VHI's new €50 fee for contract cancellations'
HEALTH Minster James Reilly says he doesn't agree with the VHI's new cancellation fee but is unable to say what can be done as the VHI is a commercial semi-state body.
Since May 1, VHI has begun imposing fees on customers who cancelled their insurance cover before their 12-month contract was up. Customers will be charged a €50 cancellation fee if they switch insurers during their contracts or cancel altogether.
Gardai uncover brothels in Limerick
FOUR brothels have been uncovered by gardai in Limerick over the last week. Investigating officers questioned nine women who were found in the various properties.
All were freed without charge after it was established they had not been held against their will. Three apartments were raided by gardai in Limerick city last Tuesday while another brothel was uncovered in Newcastle West, Co Limerick, last week. Investigations into prostitution in the area are continuing.
Loyalist speaks of memorial honour
One of the leading loyalists invited to the Queen's wreath-laying ceremony at the War Memorial in Dublin, Winston Irvine from the Shankill Road, has spoken for the first time on how it had a major impact on helping loyalists to continue building peace in Northern Ireland.
"It was hugely historic and a very proud moment in our history," he said. "It was hugely significant... The invitation to loyalist people was an extremely valid and significant move in itself." Some 20 loyalists from Northern Ireland were invited by Mary McAleese and her husband Martin. Among those present were ex-members of the Ulster Defence Association and the Ulster Volunteer Association.
Department to review Coast Guard
An efficiency review of the Irish Coast Guard is to be carried out by a government department, but it will not include the controversial €500m search-and-rescue contract awarded to a private firm.
The Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport wants a review of delivery of services by the Coast Guard and the Marine Survey Office. The search-and-rescue contract is already signed with Canadian company CHC Ireland.
No winner of €2.7m Lotto jackpot
THERE was no winner of last night's €2,671,153 Lotto jackpot. The numbers were 1, 13, 16, 17, 20, 22 (bonus 24).
There were two Match 5+bonus winners who each receive €25k; 60 Match 5s (€1,304); 145 Match 4+bonus (€135); 2,781 Match 4s (€43); 3,800 Match 3+bonus (€21); and 42,265 Match 3s (€5). The Lotto Plus 1 numbers were 9, 15, 18, 19, 24, 38 (bonus 3) and the Lotto Plus 2 numbers were 3, 7, 11, 22, 33, 43 (bonus 18).
And in the UK draw for £4.4m (€5.07m), the numbers drawn were 2, 3, 17, 23, 40, 43 (bonus 31).
Stamp collection to fetch €350,000
A stamp collection owned by a Dublin pathologist is expected to sell for more than €350,000 at auction in London. The British Empire Collection, assembled by Dr Robert Towers of Shrewsbury Road, Dublin 4, will be sold at auctioneers Spink in London on June 8.
Dr Towers, one-time president of the Royal Academy of Medicine in Ireland, was a consultant pathologist at St Vincent's Hospital, Dublin, until his retirement in 1999. The most valuable item in the collection is a pale blue, 150-year-old postal wrapper, which could fetch €11,500.
Work stoppage due at Cliffs of Moher
THE operators of Ireland's most-visited tourist attraction are preparing a contingency plan after SIPTU notified them of plans to implement a work stoppage next month.
Seventeen of the 24 staff at the Cliffs of Moher visitor centre in Co Clare are represented by SIPTU, which has formally served notice of industrial action on the company that runs the facility. The union plans a four-hour work stoppage on June 8.
The union accuses the Cliffs of Moher Centre, owned by Clare Co Council, of refusing to uphold a Labour Court recommendation to grant parity of pay for workers with other local authority employees. The firm says that to implement the agreement would see costs soar by €400,000 a year though the business is still loss-making.
Fire at ancestral home of US president
The ancestral home of the 21st US president has been damaged in a fire. A blaze broke out in Arthur Cottage in Cullybackey, Co Antrim, which was the ancestral home of Chester Alan Arthur, who served between 1881 and 1885.
Ruddock remembered on anniversary
THE first anniversary of the death of journalist Alan Ruddock falls tomorrow. Alan, who was a highly respected columnist with the Sunday Independent for many years, died suddenly on May 30 last year, after taking ill while playing cricket with his sons.
His long journalistic career included spells as Irish editor of the Sunday Times and editor of the Scotsman. He later became a leading political and economics commentator for this newspaper. Alan is survived by his wife Jackie and sons Mathew, Danny and Cameron, his father John, sister Gill, his parents-in-law and his large extended family. He is fondly remembered this weekend by his many colleagues and friends in journalism.
Bord Pleanala defers venue decision
A DECISION on the future of the €460m Tipperary casino and entertainment centre has been deferred by An Bord Pleanala. The board was due to rule on the application by last Friday but no decision has yet been made.
It's not clear when the appeals board will now rule on the proposal but it's understood it may be this week. Businessman Richard Quirke wants to build a sports and leisure complex on an 800-acre site at Two-Mile Borris near Thurles in Co Tipperary.
Top awards for Independent titles
THE Sunday Independent and other Independent News and Media titles featured strongly in the 2011 Newspaper Awards in association with PJ and Fujifilm.
The Citywest plant was commended in the prestigious Newspaper Printer of the Year (Agfa Premier Award) for its production of the Sunday Independent, Evening Herald and Irish Independent. Coldset Colour Supplement of the Year was Weekend Magazine, published by the Irish Independent, while Weekend Review was highly commended in the Sun Chemical Award.