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Tuesday 12 December 2017

Former CRC boss Kiely agrees to reappear at PAC amid controversy over €742,000 retirement package

The Central Remedial Clinic: Inset: Paul Kiely, recently retired Chief Executive of the Central Remedial Clinic
The Central Remedial Clinic: Inset: Paul Kiely, recently retired Chief Executive of the Central Remedial Clinic

Shane Phelan Public Affairs Editor

THE former chief executive of the Central Remedial Clinic has agreed to reappear before the Dail's spending watchdog following controversy over the disclosure of his controversial €742,000 retirement package.

Representatives of Paul Kiely have written to the Public Accounts Committee on his behalf saying he is willing to explain a number of issues raised.

An audit by the HSE revealed that Mr Kiely's pay-off included €200,000 tax-free, €273,336 which was taxable and €268,689 paid to Mercer consultants to top up his pension fund as though he had worked until November 2016.

Mr Kiely had previously only admitted to a pension pot of €200,000. The money was secured from donations and paid out of accounts held by the Friends and Supporters of the CRC.

In a letter to the committee, seen by, solicitors representing Mr Kiely indicated he would appear at the PAC again.

But it does not make specific reference to the retirement package controversy.

Instead, the letter focuses on cash paid by the CRC to the Mater Hospital to administer a CRC staff pension scheme.

The letter said Mr Kiely regretted not being clearer about this in his evidence to the committee last year.

"Had Mr Kiely been offered prior notice that the matter was to be reviewed by the committee, he would have been in a better position to comprehensively deal with the questions raised," the letter said.

"If by his responses Mr Kiely inadvertently caused any misunderstanding or confusion, he truly regrets doing so."

The letter went on to say Mr Kiely was willing to reappear at the committee to answer questions on the issue.

Mr Kiely has not spoken publicly since his appearance at the PAC in December.

The committee is set to revisit the CRC controversy in April, by which stage it should have received a report from a HSE-appointed administrator who is currently running the clinic after the board resigned en-masse.

Meanwhile, Rehab Group has confirmed that it will attend a hearing of the committee next Thursday.

The committee said today it would be seeking details of independent reports which were commissioned by Rehab to decide on executive pay levels. It will also request that chief executive Angela Kerins attend the hearing, along with former chief executive Frank Flannery and members of the board's remuneration committee.

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