Irish Rail staff to vote on new pay reduction plan
STAFF at Irish Rail are set to vote on a plan to take a 1.7pc pay cut for a shorter time than originally proposed.
The cash-strapped semi-state company's more than 3,000 staff have already rejected the pay cut due to hit their wages for a period of three years.
But a Labour Court recommendation just issued – seen by the Irish Independent – offers a compromise that means it would only last two years and four months.
The original deal meant staff would take the full pay cut – ranging from 1.7pc to 6.1pc for 28 months. They would then take half the pay cut, or 0.85pc, for another eight months. But the court has now recommended that the final eight-month wage reduction be dropped.
Most of the semi-state company's employees would suffer a pay cut worth 1.7pc under the cost-cutting plan.
This would slash wages by between €510 and €850 a year.
Union sources said the court's compromise might persuade staff to back the cost-cutting measures, but they were not convinced it would be accepted.
The court recommendation also says the company should identify non-payroll savings to make up for the shortfall in payroll savings, which may also help sell the deal to staff.
The National Bus and Railworkers' Union said it would not be issuing a recommendation to staff on how they should vote.
Irish Rail warned during the week that failure to reach a deal on the pay cut is costing it €100,000 a week and putting it at risk of going bust.
The company aimed to save €4.6m a year from the pay cuts.