PAC to seek pay details from grant-aided bodies

Dáil Public Accounts Committee told 25 bodies received more than €5 million

Fianna Fáil’s Seán Fleming said the committee will look for details of the full remuneration of the chief executives of organisations which receive more than €5 million in grant aid funding from the HSE. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Fianna Fáil’s Seán Fleming said the committee will look for details of the full remuneration of the chief executives of organisations which receive more than €5 million in grant aid funding from the HSE. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Fri, Apr 4, 2014, 20:18

The Dáil Public Accounts Committee is to seek details of the remuneration of senior executives in a range of organisations which receive more than €5 million in grant aid funding from the HSE.

The HSE has told the committee that there are 25 organisations which receive in excess of €5 million in grant aid annually under section 39 of the Health Act.

The Section 39 organisation which receives the largest single amount of funding from the HSE is Rehabcare, part of the Rehab group. It secured €41 million in HSE funding last year.

The committee has already sought information on pay levels in the Rehab group.

Fianna Fáil TD Seán Fleming sought and secured support from the committee to seek details on pay from the other organisations.

He said the committee would look for details of the full remuneration of the chief executives of these bodies as well as salary rates of other senior executives set out in bands rather than in specific amounts as there could be difficulties in accessing such information under data protection rules.

He said it was now a year since the HSE had received the audit of payments to senior figures in section 38 organisations which are directly funded by the health authority.

He said 12 months later full details of the background to the top-up payments identified in the audit were still awaited in many cases.

The Irish Times reported last year that executives at State-funded voluntary hospitals and agencies funded under section 38 of the Health Act were receiving more than €3.2 million in allowances and benefits on top of salary

Among the top-up payments and benefits being provided using funds allocated by the HSE to the voluntary bodies were private health insurance cover, motor allowances and extra duty allowances.

The report, carried out by the HSE’s internal audit unit, maintained that 13 agencies were paying €912,000 to nearly 50 managers in top-up salary, allowances and benefits from private funds separate to the State allocations to the voluntary organisations.

The Department of Health told the Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children this week that a total of 202 business cases have now been received from various Section 38 organisations seeking continuation of an unapproved allowances.

Mr Fleming said the committee would be seeking a progress report on the business cases when the HSE appeared before it next week.

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