Wednesday 22 November 2017

Cabinet must use next three years wisely

CREATING a stick to beat yourself with: that's how an official described the tight monitoring system for delivery on targets chaired by the Taoiseach.

A long-serving senior civil servant was even more blunt, describing it as "the troika without AJ Chopra".

Conceived by Richard Bruton as a way to ensure other ministers took the Action Plan for Jobs seriously, the tool is now being adapted for use in other areas where there is concern on lack of progress. Specific deadlines are set for implementing policies and there is pressure to ensure no slippage.

The Taoiseach chairs the meetings to ensure civil servants and ministers pay attention.

The Government now plans to put the focus on policies under Social Protection Minister Joan Burton and Health Minister Dr James Reilly.

Ms Burton has to bring about the detailed plan of retraining people on the dole, while Dr Reilly's plan entails a radical shake-up of the health service.

The Government has three years before going to the electorate.

Exiting the bailout isn't going to be enough to persuade voters it has used its time in office to maximum effect.

Best to use the time wisely.

Irish Independent

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