Sunday 26 October 2014

Six civil servants in Health receive €10K pay top-ups

Philip Ryan and Fionnan Sheahan

Published 11/06/2014 | 02:30

Dr James Reilly
Dr James Reilly

SIX senior civil servants in the Department of Health receive salary top-ups in excess of €10,000, the Irish Independent can reveal.

The additional allowances are paid to private secretaries who currently work or once worked for Health Minister James Reilly's department.

In 2012, the taxpayers forked out €127,000 in private sectary allowances for 14 civil servants.

The Health Minister, his junior ministers Alex White and Kathleen Lynch and Department of Health secretary general Ambrose McLoughlin each have a private secretary.

However, at the time, 10 former private secretaries were also receiving the payment, despite no longer working at that grade.

Before changes were introduced in September 2012, private secretaries were entitled to retain a portion of the allowance on leaving the post.

These rates are currently subject to the Haddington Road Agreement and the maximum allowance payable in 2014 for those currently in the post is €17,621.

Dr Reilly signed off on €427,000 in extra remunerations for his staff in 2012. This included €243,000 in overtime payments to 53 staff.

One civil servant received almost €30,000 in overtime payments in a single year.

Meanwhile, a ban on bonuses for civil servants and a new head of the civil service is recommended in a Government report by an expert group.

The report also calls for a clampdown on ministerial advisers, with a code of conduct on their roles and interaction with the civil service.

The Independent Panel on Accountability and Performance in the Civil Service concludes there is no role for performance related pay in the civil service.

It says the payment of bonuses may even contrary to the goals of the civil service.

The panel says there should be a new head of the civil service at secretary general level.

The holder of this position would be separate to the secretaries general of the Department of the Taoiseach and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.

Irish Independent

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