Fianna Fáil Public Accounts Committee Member Seán Fleming TD has highlighted that it took today’s meeting of the Committee with the HSE Chief Executive Cathal Magee to uncover the actual savings to the exchequer as a result of the public service retirements that will occur in the coming weeks.
Deputy Fleming said: “The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin TD has refused point-blank on several occasions to reveal the actual net savings to the taxpayer as a result of many people retiring from the public service.
“It was established with the HSE today that based on expected numbers of retiring staff that the gross cost to the HSE will be €183m this year. However Mr. Magee also confirmed to the Committee that this will lead to annual payroll savings of just €57m. The cost of these retirements is three times the amount of the annual savings to the HSE.
“The HSE confirmed that the cost of the lump sums, the cost of the pensions of those retiring, the loss of the pension levy from retired employees and the loss of the superannuation payments from retired employees must be taken into account to establish the actual true net cost of these retirements. Minister Howlin has refused to acknowledge or debate these facts.”
“Minister Howlin published the ‘Public Service Reform’ document on November 17th last. On page 10 of this document the Minister stated that the reduction in “the total number of public service employees… will have reduced our gross pay bill by over €2.5 billion since 2008.” Based on the figures revealed at the Public Accounts Committee today with the HSE, which accounts for a third of all public sector employees, will it now cost €7.5bn to achieve these savings in light of the fact that the HSE is spending €183m to save €57m in annual savings? (a multiple of three).”