TDs got paid how much on their holidays?
More heart-warming good news from down Leinster House way.
By Brian Moss
We try and avoid Vincent Browne moments as it's bad for the heart. For those not in the know, a Vincent Browne moment is when you find yourself so overcome with rage at a politician you can’t speak and may possible cry.
When we heard that over €750,000 in expenses was handed out to TDs when the Dail was shut for the summer, we couldn’t help spitting into our cornflakes. The report revealed that 26 deputies claimed over €5,000 each with only two of the 226 members of the Oireachtas (TDs and Senators) failing to receive any payments at all.
The Parliamentary Standards Allowance Scheme covers payments for travel and accommodation as well as a public representation allowance. The expenses scheme not surprisingly isn’t straight forward. Depending on how far away an Oireachtas member lives, the annual allowance ranges from €12,000 to €37,850 and is paid monthly.
TDs and Senators can also claim vouched or unvouched expenses. If they choose the unvouched route they get €15,000 without any questions asked and the vouched expenses allow for payments up to €25,000, but must have the necessary receipts.
So a quick check on the calculator will tell you that depending on where you live and which expenses payment method you choose, you could get over €60,000 in expenses on top of salary payments - not bad work if you can get it.
The two members of the Oireachtas who didn’t claim any expenses were Senator John Crown and TD Eamon Maloney - fair play lads.
Just for a laugh here is some classic Vincent in action.