Oireachtas pay has decreased
Sir -- Your article "Divided Dail unites to give itself a pay rise" (Sunday Independent, November 7, 2010) was grossly misleading. To be clear, pay for Members of the Oireachtas has decreased nearly €1.8m (eight per cent) between 2008 and 2011, and that is without taking account of the effect of the pension levy which took a further seven per cent, at least, out of Members' gross pay. However, a number of vacant seats in the Dail will be filled next year and those elected will be paid a salary. The increase of one per cent is for this reason and this reason only.
You will, no doubt, be aware of the upcoming by elections that will address these vacancies. So, despite your misleading headline, there is no question of the Dail having united to give itself a pay rise.
The estimate was presented to the Dail in accordance with the Houses of the Oireachtas Commission legislation. The accounts of the Oireachtas are also published on our website, www.oireachtas.ie. Moreover, a copy of these estimates is made available to the Leinster House media -- of which John Drennan is a long-standing member --as a matter of course.