Thursday, 26 January 2012
Dáil Éireann Debate
98. Deputy Ray Butler asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, further to Parliamentary Question No. 152 of 11 January 2012, when the public service-wide review of allowances announced in budget 2012 will be published; if the changes announced by him on 5 December 2011 and the review of allowances regarding payment of qualification allowances will have an effect on teachers who are currently studying but have not yet graduated; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4487/12]
Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform (Deputy Brendan Howlin): As announced in my address to Dáil Éireann on Expenditure Estimates 2012 on 5 December 2011, public service bodies have to achieve a reduction of 5% in the cost of allowances and premium payments in 2012. Because of the variances and complexities of allowances across the public service, Departments have been asked to forward information, including costs, in relation to each allowance and premium payment specific to their Department or sector, as appropriate. Where a Department considers that it is necessary to retain an allowance or a premium payment, as is or modified, it is necessary that a thorough and considered business case be submitted to inform the review. Departments have been requested to forward the required information, and business cases, where relevant, before 31 January 2012; my Department intends to complete the review of business cases submitted shortly thereafter.
The Minister for Education and Skills announced, as part of Budget 2012, changes to the rules governing payment of qualification allowances to teachers pending completion of the public service-wide review of allowances. He has indicated in that context that the position of existing teachers who, on 5 December 2011, were undertaking courses will be considered in the context of the public service-wide review of allowances.
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