The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) is set to meet this week to consider whether it will examine the appointment and significant salary increase of the new Secretary General of the Department of Health.
It was recently revealed that the new Secretary General will be paid a salary of €292,000, a salary which is €81,000 higher than the top pay scale.
Brian Stanley, Sinn Féin TD and Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, has called for further examination of a number of questions about the appointment process and the substantial increase in salary for the role.
Speaking today, Teachta Stanley said:
“The recent appointment of the new Secretary General of the Department of Health is of significant public interest considering the importance of the role and the unprecedented salary attached.
“I believe that it is a matter of interest for the PAC and I will be asking members to consider it for our work programme.
“At a time when hundreds of workers are receiving the Pandemic Unemployment Payment and student nurses are being given a paltry €100 per week, this huge increase in salary for a Departmental Secretary General is in poor taste.
“We need to understand where this salary fits in with the public pay scale guidelines and whether it satisfies the Public Service Pay Commission.
“We need to know more about the appointment process – were individuals headhunted and encouraged to apply, how long was the role publicly advertised and how many individuals were interviewed?
“Did the Taoiseach and the Minister for Health play a role in the decision and did they sanction this pay increase?
“The PAC has an important role to play in teasing out the answers to these questions and it is my intention to obtain the agreement of the members this week to pursue the matter further.”