herald

Saturday 21 April 2018

€3.6k wage rise will see TDs' pay reaching nearly €95k this year

Fine Gael TD Noel Rock will waive the pay increase
Fine Gael TD Noel Rock will waive the pay increase

It will be a happy new year for TDs as pay rises that will boost their salaries by more than €4,500 by the end of 2018 start to kick-in.

Dail members are due to get two pay increases totalling around €3,600 today, with a further increase coming in October.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, Tanaiste Simon Coveney, ministers, junior ministers and the Attorney General will forego the pay rises due to them during the term of the Government.

TDs' pay rises today from €89,965 to €93,599 under a deal negotiated by unions and senior government officials as part of a wider package on pay restoration in the public sector.

Increase

The first pay rise - of €2,707 - is due under the Lansdowne Road Agreement. An extension to the deal, known as the new Public Service Stability Agreement, adds another 1pc increase today.

A second 1pc rise, to be implemented on October 1, will bring the total TD salary to around €94,500.

A majority of TDs accepted a €2,707 pay rise brought in last April, though some did not.

A number of TDs contacted by the Herald said they will not accept the latest rises.

"As was the case with the last pay rise for Oireachtas members, Sinn Fein members will not be accepting any rise," said a party spokesperson.

Fine Gael TDs Noel Rock and Hildegarde Naughton were among those who waived the pay increases last time and confirmed they will do the same with the rises due this year.

"Until we get to the point where there's full pay restoration for guards, nurses and teachers, my position remains unchanged," said Mr Rock.

Fianna Fail TD Pat Casey said he would be giving his rise to charity, as he did last year.

Some TDs defended taking the increased salary.

A Green Party spokesperson said its two TDs will be accepting the increases, as they believe politicians should not set their own pay rates, which were decided by an "independent assessment".

Fine Gael TD Bernard Durkan, Fianna Fail's Sean Fleming and Labour's Willie Penrose all said they would take the increase, pointing out that they are part of the wider restoration of the pay cuts in the public sector.

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