Author Archives: kenfoxe

Five-star trip for four politicians to Bangladesh with luxury hotels and business class flights costs over €20,000

A TRIP for four politicians to Bangladesh, which included business class flights and accommodation at a five-star hotel, ended up costing the taxpayer more than €20,000. The delegation travelled to the Bangladeshi capital in April, staying five nights at the plush Westin Dhaka Hotel in the city. Flights each cost between €3,250 and €3,500 because […]

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Health Minister Simon Harris frustrated as opening of new €24 million A&E at hospital does little to ease overcrowding

HEALTH Minister Simon Harris wrote to the management of a hospital asking them how overcrowding seemed to be getting worse even after a new €24 million A&E had been opened there. The new emergency facility had opened at University Hospital Limerick (UHL) during May amid promises of three times more space and far better conditions […]

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Special accelerated PR contract awarded as matter of “national urgency” to woo European Medicines Agency to Dublin

A SPECIAL accelerated contract for public relations was awarded as a matter of “national urgency” as part of Ireland’s bid to host the European Medicines Agency. The Medicines Agency, which is based in London, will be moving after Brexit to one of the European Union member states. The Irish government has been lobbying for it […]

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Nearly ten years of video footage of Dáil, Seanad, and committee hearings taken offline by the Oireachtas

UPDATE: The footage has been restored after a lot of fuss was raised on social media yesterday. Hopefully, the archive will now be made permanent, searchable, and easy to access for everybody despite the “minimal traffic”. UPDATE 2: We are still awaiting a clear statement from Oireachtas on what they plan to do with archive […]

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Judges looked for special deal on retirement packages saying their pensions were anything but “gold-plated or platinum”

JUDGES pleaded to government for a special deal on pensions as part of the public service pay talks saying their retirement packages were anything but “gold-plated or platinum”. The judiciary told Minister Paschal Donohoe that no other group of people had been hit with as many different pay cuts and other budgetary measures during the […]

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Air emergency service for children who needed transplants was “not sustainable” as some parents chose to leave country to avoid possible delays

THE government considered grounding ministers from the state’s €8-million Learjet because of gaps in services for flying children abroad for life-saving transplants. The proposal was one of several options considered after the Department of Defence said they did not have the resources to provide a round-the-clock service for the desperately ill kids. A briefing prepared […]

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Corporate enforcer forced to wait years for key appointments of forensic accountants and computer experts

This is a two part-blog. First half is a story about the chaotic saga of getting forensic accountants appointed to Office of Director of Corporate Enforcement. Second half is about a similarly chaotic process of trying to fill a vacancy for an IT expert who could examine electronic evidence in the office. Uploaded below are […]

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Department warns over serious danger of fraud in annual spending of €340-a-million on childcare schemes

CHILDREN’S Minister Katherine Zappone has been warned that childcare schemes across the country are wide open to the potential for fraud. In a submission, Ms Zappone was told there were “serious concerns” over the Department’s ability to monitor around €340 million in annual spending. The memo said the current system allowed services to make “over-claims” […]

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RTÉ should review loss-making public service broadcasting, internal Department of Public Expenditure documents say

THE Department of Public Expenditure said RTÉ needs to cut costs more before any commitment should be made to give them extra funding. RTÉ should be asked to review loss-making public service broadcasting and even look at what services it was providing, an internal Departmental briefing note says. The memo for Minister Paschal Donohoe was […]

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Irish Water’s parent company Ervia looked for €250,000-a-year salary for new chief executive, €30,000 more than agreed

IRISH Water’s parent company Ervia looked for a €250,000 salary for its incoming chief executive despite being told the pay for the position had to be €30,000 less. The appointment of former Bórd Na Móna executive Mike Quinn was eventually agreed with a pay package of €225,000, a hike of €5,000 on what had originally […]

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