Friday 28 April 2017

'If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys' - The public have their say on TDs €2,700 pay rise

Kathy Armstrong, Kyran O'Brien and Kevin Doyle

The majority of our TDs are set to enjoy a pay boost of €2,700 this week.

Despite Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe asking our TDs to voluntarily return the money to the State, over 90 are due to accept the increase.

TDs are among the thousands of civil servants whose pay was cut during the recession and under the Lansdowne Road Agreement are now entitled to start having those cuts reversed.

While they may be entitled to the money, when Independent.ie asked people in Dublin whether they think TDs should take the money, some said they think now isn't the right time.

One person said: "I suppose a lot of people would feel it's very unfair when they haven't been restored, perhaps the TDs should wait until other sectors are restored and should lead by example.

"I would think there are other people who earn less who should earn that restoration first."

Another man said: "It's too much money and the time is completely off, if they want to help they should be giving it to areas that need it."

Others said they think it's fair that TDs accept the money.

One explained: "I wouldn't like to be a TD and not get paid for the work I do, if you look at the amount of work they do and the cr*p they put up with you have to pay good money.

"If you pay peanuts you get monkeys."

Read More: Majority of TDs to accept €2,700 pay hike, despite calls to sign waiver

When contacted by Independent.ie about whether they would accept the increase, this is what they replied:

- All 23 Sinn Fein TDs were instructed to sign a waiver allowing the State to keep the money

- The two Social Democrats TDs Catherine Murphy and Róisín Shortall said that they don't think now is the right time to accept a pay increase

- Solidarity's Ruth Coppinger, Paul Murphy and Mick Barry said they are going to use the money to help with campaigns like Repeal the Eight

- People Before Profit's Richard Boyd Barrett, Gino Kenny and Bríd Smith  said they plan to donate the first month's installment to support the striking Bus Eireann workers

- All Labour Party and Green Party TDs are going to accept the money on the basis that it's linked to the pay of civil servant

- Fine Gael TDs Noel Rock and Hildegarde Naughton have confirmed they won't take the increase

- Deputy Thomas Byrne was the only Fianna Fail representative to confirm he wont' take the pay restoration

-  Six independent TDs have already signed the waiver forms and Kevin 'Boxer' Moran, Catherine Connolly, Michael Fitzmaurice and Seamus Healy confirmed they are planning to do so

- Independents4Change TD Joan Collins said taking the money would be "immoral", while Clare Daly, Mick Wallace and Tommy Broughan did not reply to the survey.

Read More: 'You're messing it up for the rest of us' - TDs round on Noel Rock in Dail pay fury

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