independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Pension payoff of €310,000 for city manager of nine years

Tom Mackey: by the age of 85 he will have got almost €2m in pension payments

A RETIRING city manager has received a bumper pension payoff of over €310,000 after nine years in that role.

Tom Mackey's duties as Limerick's city manager ended on Tuesday and he is now able to claim a gross lump-sum pension pay-off of €311,488 after a long career in local government.

Limerick City Council confirmed last night that after deductions Mr Mackey received €271,466. The council spokesman said Mr Mackey's annual pension payout would be €73,422 per annum.

By the time the 58-year old reaches his 85th birthday, Mr Mackey will have received €1.98m in pension payments from the State on top of the lump sum just received.

Meanwhile, a further seven council managers can expect to receive similar bumper pay-offs before the end of next year.

Lump sum

This follows the Department of the Environment confirming last night that a further three council managers are due to retire this year, with four more set to go in 2013.

However, Mr Mackey's decision to retire now ensures that his pension entitlements are based on his salary before pay cuts of €146,844. After the cuts, it dropped to €142,469.

Mr Mackey's exit deal included special terms that are only given to current council managers and secretary generals of government departments who were in place prior to a Government decision last year to end the special perks for newly appointed secretary generals.

The special deal means Mr Mackey gets pension benefits for years he did not work. Eight years were added to ensure his pension entitlements.

As part of his pension payoff, Mr Mackey received one-and-a-half times his salary, totalling €220,266. In addition, he received a special severance gratuity of €91,255 -- the highest amount ever received by a retiring council manager.

According to figures provided by Environment Minister Phil Hogan to Sinn Fein's Mary Lou McDonald, the nearest special-severance gratuity was received by former Dublin city manager, John Fitzgerald in 2006 when he received €85,214.

Since 2000, 19 county and city managers have received a total of €1.3m in special gratuity payments.

Yesterday, Ms McDonald said: "It is unacceptable that those at the top of the public sector continue to benefit from excessive pension perks."

Irish Independent

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