herald

Wednesday 20 November 2019

Gardai paid €14k to Doonbeg for sandwich bags during Trump visit

Donald Trump at Doonbeg
Donald Trump at Doonbeg

A €14,000 spend by gardai on sandwich/snack bags for members was part of an overall €107,625 catering payment to the Donald Trump-owned Trump Doonbeg resort in west Clare.

That is according to figures released by An Garda Siochana concerning its €11.3m overtime operation put in place to protect the US President during his two-night stay at Trump Doonbeg in June.

The figures, released in response to a new Freedom of Information request, show that the Trump Doonbeg resort catering bill was run up through a series of "marquee banquets" for gardai, where they consumed a variety of meals over five days at the resort. The bill for providing officers with sandwich/snack bags was €2,800 a day over the five days, while gardai also spent €875 on "additional teas and coffees due to inclement weather" on June 4.

The contents of the sandwich bag are not known but a west Clare retailer which also supplied sandwich bags to gardai during the operation included a sandwich, a drink, a bar of chocolate, a piece of fruit and a bag of Tayto crisps at a cost of €5 each.

The breakdown of the €107,625 total shows that over three days of the five-day overtime operation, Trump Doonbeg earned more than €26,000 a day.

Breakfast

The resort was one of a large number of Co Clare hotel businesses to benefit from garda catering and accommodation spend during the visit.

Gardai on overtime at various locations throughout west Clare had their breakfast each morning at the marquee at the Trump Doonbeg resort and the breakfast bill over four days was €16,800 - or €4,200 a day.

The officers also had lunch each day at Trump Doonbeg and the lunch bill over four days came to €21,000 - or €5,250 each day.

In addition, gardai paid Trump Doonbeg €21,000 for serving dinner over four days, at a daily cost of €5,250.

Gardai also paid the resort €21,700 for late-night snacks.

Along with the catering spend, gardai paid Trump Doonbeg €5,976 to stay in a four-bedroom "classic links cottage" during the visit. The duration of the stay is not disclosed for commercial reasons.

Asked to comment on the logistics of catering for gardai working overtime, Trump Doonbeg general manager Joe Russell said: "We geared up for that entire week, as expected, and it went very well. I'm proud of our entire team."

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