Councillors have asked the political standards watchdog to investigate how €250,000 of taxpayers money was made available to buy the house of a county manager.
Longford County Manager Tim Caffrey has insisted that he had no conflict of interest because he had declared his ownership of the house.
He has also said that his council had no role in selecting the property and that he himself was not ‘directly involved’ in the application for the state grant.
But councillors have now decided to contact the Standards in Public Office Commission to ask them to investigate the matter. They have also decided to refer the matter on to the Local Government auditor.
Fine Gael councillor Michael Carrigy said the elected members believed that this was the best course of action to take.
"We want transparency on the issue. That is our job as public representatives," he said
Mr Carrigy said the councillors had agreed this course of action after holding a special meeting yesterday (Monday), where they were given a briefing about the issue by Mr Caffrey.
Mr Caffrey has confirmed that he had been living in the four-bedroom house in Clondra, which is a village around 8km from Longford town, until he rented it out to a voluntary housing body earlier this year.
The Muiriosa Foundation then paid Mr Caffrey €400 a month to rent the house for a person with an intellectual disability. It then worked with Longford county council to get a €250,000 State grant to buy the house in Clondra, which is a village around 8km from Longford. But it has pulled out of the plan to buy the house and is moving the person to another house in Longford this week.
The Department of the Environment, which gave approval for the grant to buy the house, said that it was never told that Mr Caffrey was the owner of the house.
Environment Minister Phil Hogan and Junior Minister for Housing Jan O’Sullivan have both expressed concern about the revelation. They are going to seek a report from the council about the issue. And they have promised to review the €58m per year grants scheme used to provide housing for people with intellectual disabilities to come up with new guidelines.