McDowell, Derek

Thursday, 26 February 2004

Seanad Eireann Debate
Vol. 175 No. 15

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Public Service Superannuation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2004: Committee Stage.

I note the definition of “public servant” excludes five positions, namely the President, a member of the Judiciary, the Master of the High Court, a taxing master or a county registrar. Why have these ...More Button

Can the Minister of State say where that is set out?More Button

Which ones are not included?More Button

Yes.More Button

How do we know which ones are not stated there?More Button

I am not trying to make arcane points about the law but I raised this matter because it seems that the basic statement, in so far as there is one, is that the retirement age is not 65 or that it could...More Button

Specific bodies such as the fire brigades and so on seem to be dealt with by separate legislation but the basic statement is contained in the 1980 regulations. Is that correct?More Button

Why did the Minister of State choose to use primary legislation to amend the regulations? It seems odd that the regulations would have amended primary Acts in the first place but that being the case, ...More Button

I am not doing that.More Button

We decided to deal with a number of queries on section 1, which relate to particular definitions, together. Perhaps we should have dealt with them discretely. However, we are taking them together as t...More Button

We could happily open a Pandora’s box in this area. I seek more information on the point I mentioned concerning the definition of a public servant. What is the status of the staff of the Houses of the...More Button

Does this include Members’ secretaries etc.?More Button

I ask the Minister to check this between now and Report Stage. There is an increased difficulty because of the legislation passed last year dealing with fixed-term contracts and the need to roll those...More Button

That is correct.More Button

That means these people are not covered by this legislation.More Button

I will not labour the point, but it would be interesting to obtain some clarity before we come to Report Stage, or perhaps in the other House. To elaborate on the point I made earlier, under the Prote...More Button

Once they become established?More Button

Are they considered new entrants if they become established after 1 April?More Button

If they are not public servants now and they are becoming public servants——More Button

I wish to ask a question related to the amendment. This subsection appears to deal with situations where people are working for a public service body listed in the Schedule and moving into the Civil S...More Button

Is there an implied or actual contract?More Button

I endorse the point made by Senators Browne and O’Toole. It does not matter much whether an individual decides to stay in the teaching profession or not. The fact is that when they entered teacher tra...More Button

I will raise it under the section. The point at issue with this amendment is the preservation of the expectation of people in the public service who are in a course of training. I wanted to ask about ...More Button

I am aware of that. However, we must deal with this by relation to the provision for gardaí. That is where this arises.More Button

We have been debating the issue already. The Minister of State has justified this provision on the basis that a provision has been made for gardaí. We must relate it to other professions and other cou...More Button

I will raise it again in a few moments.More Button

If the issue of nurses had been raised in this regard, no doubt the Minister of State would have been allowed to respond on that basis.More Button

I do not want to delay matters so I will save the issue of nurses for a few moments. I wish to ask the Minister of State about the issue to which he referred, which the Acting Chairman deemed to be in...More Button

I do not understand what the phrase “implied contract” means. Is a contract in place beforehand?More Button

Is it in writing?More Button

Amendment put.
Yes IndicatorVoted Yes More Button

Public Service Superannuation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2004: Committee Stage (Resumed).

This is a very important amendment. What is being done in the Bill contrasts with Government and ministerial policy as stated over a number of years. Under the strategic management initiative, the Gov...More Button

There are a number of technical matters in section 2 that should be clarified by the Minister of State. Section 2(4)(II), discussed earlier, deals with people returning to the public service after a b...More Button

That is not clear from the way the subsections are drafted. I appreciate that is the intention but subsection (6) deals with public servants and the public service includes Oireachtas Members.More Button

I am happy to accept that. The Minister of State did not deal with my first point, probably because I did not put it very clearly. I have had an opportunity to look at it again.More Button

I did not express myself clearly. Perhaps I could try again. The relevant parts are set out in section 2(4)(a). It states: “[Where] a person duly receives a written offer of appointment as a public se...More Button

It does not get any easier.More Button

If not why not?More Button

Was the Senator not a public servant all along?More Button

When I broached the issue of nurses earlier in the debate, the Acting Chairman felt I was out of order. It could be usefully explored in this context. It is common practice, particularly outside Dubli...More Button

I cannot allow that comment to go without some sort of rebuttal. The State has a dual role. We must consider this matter from the point of view of the employers. This proposal would unilaterally chang...More Button

The Minister of State is wasted in this job.More Button

I wish to raise a point which is a little less arcane than some of the points we discussed earlier. This section gives a facility to people to remain at work beyond the age of 65 years if they choose ...More Button

I would like clarification on a point which relates to drafting as much as to anything else. Can the Minister of State clarify whether, subject to what is in the section, it is the option of the indiv...More Button

The legislation does not make it crystal clear that a garda may choose to leave at 55 years of age. As written, the legislation would allow the commissioner to require the member to continue until he ...More Button

It is not clear that the option is the garda’s and not the commissioner’s.More Button

Where do we stand with this section? In effect this is an enabling section in so far as it enables the Minister for Defence to produce a scheme for the PDF. I am not sure that this has already been pu...More Button

I endorse what others said. Those of us trying to make this argument are in some difficulty. The case is incontrovertible that there are special circumstances affecting teachers and politicians. These...More Button

Amendment put.
Yes IndicatorVoted Yes More Button

Amendment put.
Yes IndicatorVoted Yes More Button

Subsection (2) deals with the Permanent Defence Force. However, when discussing section 8 of the Bill the Minister of State indicated that arrangements for the Defence Forces were still under negotiat...More Button

The Minister of State has been helpful in clarifying the matter. However, it seems remarkable that the Bill will contain a provision which will, in effect, negate its impact. The purpose of the Bill i...More Button

This covers the situation where someone is working beyond 65 and whether those years are taken into account for reckoning service. Is that a correct estimate? It brings into play the related situation...More Button

Does that mean the Minister of State has made no decision on the commission’s recommendations?More Button

It would be useful, and we should provide in the section that there should be consultation with any trade union of which the individual is a member, rather than effectively leaving the decision to man...More Button

The Bill does not say that.More Button

Public Service Superannuation (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2004: Report and Final Stages.

I join other Senators in thanking the Minister of State for the way in which he dealt with the Bill today. I appreciate it can be difficult to come into either House with what I expect are overriding ...More Button


Last Updated: 09/09/2010 20:26:20 First Page Previous Page Page of 12 Next Page Last Page