Friday 30 September 2016

Two retiring council chiefs shared €500,000

Gordon Deegan

Published 26/01/2016 | 02:30

The payments enjoyed by retiring local authority chief executives have been strongly criticised
The payments enjoyed by retiring local authority chief executives have been strongly criticised

Two retiring council chief executives received a total of more than €500,000 between them in combined lump sums.

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The payments enjoyed by retiring local authority chief executives have been strongly criticised by a spokesman for small and medium businesses.

In one instance, Eddie Sheehy received a pension pot of €270,194 when he stepped down as chief executive of Wicklow County Council in April of last year.

In Carlow, Tom Barry received pension lump sum payments of €251,308 after retiring on January of last year.

Both men would have contributed on a weekly or monthly basis to their own pensions during long and distinguished careers in local government.

Mr Sheehy received a gross lump sum payment of €202,646 and a special severance gratuity payment of €67,548.

In addition to the lump sum payment, Mr Sheehy is entitled to a gross annual pension of €67,548.

Mr Barry received a gross lump sum payment of €188,481, along with a special severance gratuity payment of €62,827.

In addition to the lump sum, Mr Barry is entitled to annual gross pension payments of €62,827.

The Department of the Environment yesterday confirmed the payments.

But the chief executive of the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME), Mark Fielding, referring to the packages, said: "It is akin to being let loose in Willy Wonka's chocolate factory with a dolly mixture of double dip delights."

The Government has changed the rules on pension payments, so that recently appointed chief executives can no longer avail of such generous pension terms.

Irish Independent

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