Tuesday 23 January 2018

Not so fast, Noonan warns NTMA staff wanting to quit

FInance Minister Michael Noonan (pictured) is taking a new approach to stemming the brain drain at the National Treasury Management Agency by extending notice periods and placing restrictions on some departing staff.

"The NTMA is implementing a number of changes to its employment contracts, including the introduction of longer notice periods of three to six months – up from one to three months," Mr Noonan said in a response to a Dail question.

The NTMA will put "garden leave" clauses in all new contracts, he added.

The agency is also adding provisions to new contracts restricting staff from performing services for new employers within six months of departure "relating to a transaction or other matter in respect of which they participated directly or substantially" at the NTMA.

The wheeze follows a review by Matheson lawyers.

NAMA boss Brendan McDonagh moaned to TDs and senators last week that he was having trouble retaining staff, adding that more than 10pc have left the agency this year.

It is good to see the minister trying to resolve the thorny issues around the leaking of confidential information. Maybe he will get round to sorting out the conflicts of interest in his own department when lawyers and accountants from big Dublin firms on secondment devise legislation.

When The Punt asked Mr Noonan about this practice, he told a room of incredulous reporters that professionals on secondment were motivated by patriotism.

Irish Independent

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