Shady dealings in local authorities come under the microscope in new RTÉ documentary
Make sure you tune in to this.
A new RTÉ Investigates documentary airing on Wednesday will probe "systemic failures" in Ireland's local authorities and how they enabled "false accounting and employee fraud".
In a statement ahead of the show, RTÉ says that Ireland's local authorities spend more than €5 billion a year and have a huge range of responsibilities from housing to waste; roads to parks; and planning to tourism but are subject to very little external oversight.
This is as Councils remain outside oversight bodies like the Comptroller and Auditor General and the Public Accounts Committee.
As such, RTÉ Investigates spent the last six months examining how local authorities go about their business and is said to have "uncovered systemic failures, which enabled false accounting and employee fraud".
"Broadcast tonight, RTÉ Investigates: Council Chamber Secrets looks at how reforms promised after the tribunals of inquiry never materialised," the synopsis for the documentary states.
"This includes why a law introduced to allow inquiries into Council’s cannot be used because 20-years on no Minister has signed the necessary order.
"And how public standards legislation ran aground in an Oireachtas Committee."
RTÉ says a wide number of counties and examples have been examined, including:
€1.8 million worth of transactions involving Limerick City and County Council and Irish Water are under Garda investigation following the dismissal of a council employee.
Gardaí are investigating the discovery of forged building compliance certs held by Mayo County Council in relation to its new €11 million swimming pool in Castlebar.
RTÉ Investigates reveals how the discharge of untreated sewage from the Council-owned public toilets prompted an ethics investigation into allegations of gross misconduct.
The council has refused to release an internal inquiry report into the generation of false invoices citing a Garda investigation, which An Garda Siochana said it was not aware of.
RTÉ Investigates: Council Chamber Secrets airs on Wednesday at 9.35pm on RTÉ One and the RTÉ Player.
You can watch a trailer for the programme below.
Clip via RTÉ