Mr Cowen

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 Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe: his unusually blunt comments will be seen as a warning to Minister for Health Simon Harris to control spending within his sector. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

The current rate of health spending, if repeated for the rest of the year, will be a “significant risk” to the management of the public finances, Mini(...)

Fianna Fáil spokesman Barry Cowen said constituencies such as his own of Offaly, where Bord na Móna has a significant presence, could see its industries affected. File photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Fianna Fáil has warned it will not support any carbon tax increases in the budget unless the money raised is reinvested in affected communities and m(...)

Fianna Fáil finance spokesman Michael McGrath said the  budget must “involve practical measures to tackle the acute crises the Government has allowed to develop in housing and in parts of our health service”. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Fianna Fáil, whose acquiescence is needed to pass budgetary policy, has broadly agreed with the spending approach outlined by the Government, while cl(...)

Fine Gael figures  believe an election within the next year is highly likely

A senior Fianna Fáil TD has said his party is unlikely to renew the confidence and supply deal with Fine Gael, increasing the prospects of an election(...)

Martin McGuinness’s widow, Bernie; Gerry Adams; Michelle O’Neill; and Mary Lou McDonald at the Sinn Féin ardfheis. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Senior figures in Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have insisted they would never enter any coalition with Sinn Féin, irrespective of their leader. Sinn Féi(...)

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy: “All of our housebuilding targets and our social housing support targets are looking like we will exceed our numbers for this year, and we are more ambitious again for next year.” Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

The homelessness crisis is likely to get worse before it gets better, the Minister for Housing has admitted. Eoghan Murphy has been strongly criticis(...)

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy is expected to seek Cabinet support not to oppose a private members motion from Sinn Féin seeking a National Car Test-style inspection system for rental properties. Photograph: Colin Keegan

Landlords would face significant financial penalties if found to be renting out substandard accommodation under new proposals to be considered by the (...)

Barry Cowen: “When the spin fades away, the fact will remain that there are no charges and Fianna Fáil fulfilled its commitment.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have agreed to a last-minute deal on the future of water charges after Fianna Fáil made several substantial concessions. T(...)

Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government Simon Coveney had insisted the 4% rate would not be altered  and received the backing of the Taoiseach and the Fine Gael parliamentary party. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

The Government has agreed to slightly alter its rental strategy after reaching a compromise with Fianna Fáil. Minister for Housing Simon Coveney and(...)

Barry Cowen, Fianna Fáil’s spokesman with responsibility for water charges, said it had not been “scientifically proven” charges were the best way of discouraging excessive use.  Photograph: Eric Luke

Different methods of encouraging water conservation apart from applying charges on customers need to be examined by the Oireachtas committee examining(...)

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