Connaughton quizzes OSI over staff bonuses

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East Galway TD Paul Connaughton quizzed Ordnance Survey Ireland bosses at last week’s meeting of the Public Accounts Committee as it emerged that staff were paid €30,000 in bonuses in 2010 in contravention of government policy.

The issue arose at last Thursday’s meeting of the Public Accounts Committee as committee members learned that Ordnance Survey Ireland is now seeking to have these payments sanctioned retrospectively.

‘At last Thursday’s meeting of the Public Accounts Committee, I learned that bonuses totalling €30,000 were paid to four staff members at Ordnance Survey Ireland, despite the fact that the Government had passed emergency legislation to ban bonus payments to public servants in view of the worsening state of the country’s finances.

‘One employee involved in marketing had a salary of €80,000 with provision for a performance-related bonus of €20,000, which contravened the legislation. Three other employees were paid bonuses of €10,000 in contravention of the legislation then in place.

‘The work of the Public Accounts Committee is very important in terms of finding and highlighting where taxpayers’ money is being wasted and this is just one of many issues that I have raised in recent months and I and my colleagues on the committee will continue to trawl through the accounts of various public bodies to ascertain if money is being wasted and if so, to ensure that the matter is highlighted and change effected.’