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 Abolish Public Service bonuses

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PostSubject: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 3:44 am

As far as I can remember, public sector bonus schemes were brought in about 10 years ago to make public sector bosses salaries more aligned to their private sector counterparts. At the time, I think private sector pay in general was running ahead of public, especially at executive level.

However, I do think this bonus system is been heavily abused by senior public service executives (admittedly there are rules, but who makes the rules), who appear to get bonus payments regardless of merit, effort or achievement.

Shane Ross on Q&A last night told the story of how he received a huge cheque and rang the Dept. of Finance to enquire about it. It was his bonus, and he had to keep it because everyone got one.

Roddy Molloy received a bonus of €35,458 last year. That's more than the average industrial wage. But ignoring that, how does anyone know if he deserved it or not ?

The system is clearly wide open to abuse, and is being abused. So I say get rid of it.

What Civil Servant is going to do a performance review on another civil servant and subsequently deny a full bonus? Very few I would imagine.

This is a money for old rope scheme.

I would ask Fine Gael to focus their energies on these executive layers of our Public Services, this is where the abuse is and this is where the savings are to be made. Broad brush attacks at the public services in general are of little use, and may even backfire on FG.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 4:14 am

And while I'm at it, can we do something about the massive accumulation of allowances that some people get, for stuff they were doing 20 years ago.

Night shift, weekend, on-call or whatever allowances people got, they still get them years later even though the allowance is not called for.

We need to start bringing these people to the Labour Court or somewhere to buy out these allowances. These alowances are pensionable and cost a fortune.

Also

Why does a Director General in a department get 30 days leave, when a junior in the same dept. with the same years service still only gets 20 ?
That's not only unfair, it's immoral.

Here's the way I understand it.

1- Running a country is the same as running a business.

2- The product of that business is a safe, progressive and equitable society.

3- The funding for that business is the safe, progressive and equitable society.

We seem to get lots of people who can run the business, but fail too deliver the product.
Sometimes we get product people who can't run the business.

And unfortunately, society itself either can't tell the difference or doesn't care, because it doesn't know who is funding the business.


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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 4:24 am

I have to say I disagree with bonus cultures full stop, as I do salaries which are heavily based on commission. In my opinion people should be working in jobs suitable to their qualifications and they should be paid a fair wage for the job which they are doing. If they want to earn more money they should upskill, possibly with the help of their employer, and thus seek promotion and the taking of increased responsibility.

The whole bonus culture makes me sick. A member of my extended family works in the City in London. His basic salary is £40k per annum yet last year he took home £180k. That is an absolute recipe for disaster. Making people so reliant on commission and bonus leads to situations, which I have seen through work, where you have people in their 80s being granted 25 year mortgages by banks!
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 4:28 am

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
As far as I can remember, public sector bonus schemes were brought in about 10 years ago to make public sector bosses salaries more aligned to their private sector counterparts. At the time, I think private sector pay in general was running ahead of public, especially at executive level.

However, I do think this bonus system is been heavily abused by senior public service executives (admittedly there are rules, but who makes the rules), who appear to get bonus payments regardless of merit, effort or achievement.

Shane Ross on Q&A last night told the story of how he received a huge cheque and rang the Dept. of Finance to enquire about it. It was his bonus, and he had to keep it because everyone got one.

Roddy Molloy received a bonus of €35,458 last year. That's more than the average industrial wage. But ignoring that, how does anyone know if he deserved it or not ?

The system is clearly wide open to abuse, and is being abused. So I say get rid of it.

What Civil Servant is going to do a performance review on another civil servant and subsequently deny a full bonus? Very few I would imagine.

This is a money for old rope scheme.

I would ask Fine Gael to focus their energies on these executive layers of our Public Services, this is where the abuse is and this is where the savings are to be made. Broad brush attacks at the public services in general are of little use, and may even backfire on FG.
I agree completely on the bonus issue, but I’d like to think that if FG make a broad brush attack on the public service, they do so because they think it is in the national interest and to that extent does it matter if it backfires on them or not?

We should always be looking for the best value we can get, in good times and obviously in bad, but that’s not the way the world works. In good times we put in every service we can afford and we get sloppy with it, but now in our reduced circumstances not only do we badly need to tighten up, as you say, but we need to trim our range of services to those vital as against those desirable but at the moment not affordable.

A very good case can be made for almost all public services currently on offer, but with the state of the public purse at the moment we simply have to cut our cloth to suit our measure, I don’t see any choice in that.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 4:56 am

Well I think FG also have electoral interest at heart, and I suppose
they are in opposition, and it is the opposition duty to evict the
Govt. (At least in Irish politics)

However, and I don't mean for this thread to go all FG, they should
make a distinction between Public Services, which are excellent, and
administration, which is shite.

Tony, I edited my post above, I believe Sec.Generals should be looking
for best value every day, good times or bad. That's what they are for.

In my personal life I do it all the time. Bet you do too. Maybe splash
on a Sunday or ignore price tags at Christmas. Sure. But that's with
our money by us. Personally. Not by bureaucrats to which we have
entrusted our money.

Private companies do not have a splash out Sunday. Full stop.

We need a private company attitude to a not for profit product - society.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 10:15 am

The bonus system in the banks contributed to the ongoing disaster, there was a conflict of interest in people recommending mortgages getting a bonus for each one signed off.

I've posted before about how money was pushed out into the public sector that hadn't even been asked for - benchmarking, payments for using computers that made work easier, regradings and so on. Vote buying, is the only explanation I can think of.

Public services are very uneven. There have been some big improvements in some areas and it would be a terrible shame to see that undone by random and ill thought out cuts. Did I here right that An Bord Snip wont report for 18 months? If they asked employees to suggest how waste could be cut they could have an interim report ready in 3 months. They should pick the low hanging fruit, like the evoting machines, right away.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 2:06 pm

Don't froget this from October

Top public servants share €3 million in bonus payments

Quote :
THE STATE'S top public servants shared a €3 million performance bonus last year, with average payments coming to more than €14,000 each.

The scheme applies to 221 senior public servants who received bonus payments ranging from a low of €3,200 to €26,000 for the top performer.

Those who benefited from the bonus scheme are on salaries ranging from €138,683 to €186,891 a year.

This is a racket. I'm going bonus hunting today.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 2:12 pm

From June 2007:

Public service bonuses for all

Quote :
Assistant and deputy secretaries (the second and third highest grades, after secretary general) in the civil service are entitled to apply for bonuses under the scheme, as are equivalent grades in the Gardai and the Defence Forces.

Some 205 people applied last year, and all received an award.

The basic salaries of the officers covered by the awards scheme range from about €115,000 to over €150,000.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Wed Nov 26, 2008 2:20 pm

Top HSE staff to get bonus payments

Quote :
Last year, there was much public controversy when top managers in the HSE received a total of €1.15 million in performance-related bonus payments.

Prof Drumm received a bonus of €80,000 on top of his salary of around €370,000 last year.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 12:45 pm

Rody Molloy's golden parachute ...



Quote :
SELF-DESTRUCTING State agency chief Rody Molloy will pocket nearly €500,000 to walk away from the top job at FAS.

The departing head of FAS will receive a severance package equivalent to two years' salary, with the preservation of hugely valuable pension entitlements.

A spokesman for the Department said Mr Molloy would be treated in accordance with standard civil service procedures.

He would get a maximum of half his annual salary as a pay-off, plus a lump sum equivalent to one and a half times his salary.

Mr Molloy is on a salary of over €203,000, plus an annual bonus of €35,000. The overall departure package comes to twice his annual remuneration, pushing him close to that half-a-million figure.

He will also have completely preserved pension benefits, which are likely to be very substantial.

It is understood there has been no agreement to appoint Mr Molloy to any other highly-paid job in the public sector, as happened in the case of other controversies.

A senior civil servant who left the Department of Health over one 'hot potato' issue was later installed in the Higher Education Authority.

Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny asked for assurances in the Dail yesterday that Mr Molloy would receive no standard severance payments or "golden handshakes" until he co-operated fully with the Public Accounts Committee investigation into FAS finances.

Mr Cowen replied, however, that Mr Molloy's severance arrangements would be made "in line with public sector norms".
http://www.independent.ie/national-news/opposition-fury-as-molloy-to-get-8364500000-payoff-for-quitting-role-1554676.html

xman on PIN wrote:
He's got two years left to retirement.

Refuse to accept his resignation, keep him on for the next two years, get him to write reports on wasteful spending in the public sector and how best to punish offenders.

Make sure he works his full 35 hours a week every week. Get him to sign a timesheet when he comes in every morning and sign out every evening. No internet access at work. Make him report to the nastiest most obsessive micro manager in the organisation. Weekly progress meeting at 9am every Monday morning. Give him a desk on a busy thoroughfare where everybody can see his computer screen as they walk past so he's not tempted to waste his days playing solitaire or reading the paper.

That's what I'd do with him. Make him earn his last €500k from the trough instead of just giving it to him.
http://www.thepropertypin.com/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=15937

But it's ok, there's plenty of cake ...
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 12:47 pm

Did he do his job in accordance with public sector norms?

He is essentially getting early retirement with no loss of pay. This is approved by his buddy Cowen.

Cowen should go too.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:05 pm

I'm disgusted and shocked with this. I see that the Irish Times is trumpeting that we now have accountability.
Is it accountability when a thief like this is allowed resign with half a million euro in his pocket?
Justice? Throw the knave from the Tarpeian rock with his stolen gold tied around his ankles and let the vultures pick out the eyes from his corpse. Mad The people have been fooled but will no longer tolerate largesse and theft of the public purse!
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 1:24 pm

Indeed.
There are two wrongs here. Firstly the guy spending our money like it grows on trees, and secondly someone agreeing to give him half a Million to get lost.

Yet two wrongs make a right ? This is accountability ?

Accountability is not accountability when it is bought at a high price. It's a bribe to feck off without causing a bigger mess.

So that's actually three wrongs then.

What utter bollocks. Evil or Very Mad
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:17 pm

And what of MAry Harney's $410 hairdo in the US, which Mary Hannafin has defended as not a serious issue? Taxpayers money!!!

They have no concept of public duty. The sacred bond which they are meant to have as servants of the people!

We're the real eejits though for tolerating this plague of locusts.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:24 pm

I heard today that a local authority engineer I know died recently. He was 32 years in the same job, hard as steel, but a great listener and respected by all, and now he is gone his whole office finds themselves running in circles trying to pick up with the amount of work he had been handling.

I would be willing to bet anything that he never looked for a bonus in his life.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:28 pm

Respvblica wrote:
And what of MAry Harney's $410 hairdo in the US, which Mary Hannafin has defended as not a serious issue? Taxpayers money!!!

They have no concept of public duty. The sacred bond which they are meant to have as servants of the people!

We're the real eejits though for tolerating this plague of locusts.

Christ almighty, it’s bad enough with the silly old buggers on J. Duffy going on about the $410.00 hair do, but I would have hoped someone who can use a computer would understand, after it had been explained, a million bleedin’ times throughout the day, that the “hair do” was only a part of the bill, there were other services for other people included in the total of $410.00.

She was representing the country FFS!!, do we want her going around looking like Ken Dodd?
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:34 pm

tonys wrote:
Respvblica wrote:
And what of MAry Harney's $410 hairdo in the US, which Mary Hannafin has defended as not a serious issue? Taxpayers money!!!

They have no concept of public duty. The sacred bond which they are meant to have as servants of the people!

We're the real eejits though for tolerating this plague of locusts.

Christ almighty, it’s bad enough with the silly old buggers on J. Duffy going on about the $410.00 hair do, but I would have hoped someone who can use a computer would understand, after it had been explained, a million bleedin’ times throughout the day, that the “hair do” was only a part of the bill, there were other services for other people included in the total of $410.00.

She was representing the country FFS!!, do we want her going around looking like Ken Dodd?

I know the cost of hairdoes, and your right about that. In my mind, once we let Bertie Ahern off with spending was it 25,000 euro a year public money on painting his face, we are not in the position to complain if Mary got herself diamond studded nose piercings on the FAS bill.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:38 pm

I have no issue whatsoever with a Minister using public money to look well while representing the State at events.

I would have issues with the legitimacy of the event though.
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:42 pm

EvotingMachine0197 wrote:
I have no issue whatsoever with a Minister using public money to look well while representing the State at events.

I would have issues with the legitimacy of the event though.

I do. Everyone has to look appropriate for the job they are in - in the vast majority of cases they pay for their own clothes, hair does and make up. Irish politicians are some of the highest paid in Europe - if you worked it out per head of population represented, probably the highest. I find it totally out of order that they put any personal expenses down on their claims.
Civil service rates of travel and subsistence are set out and agreed with the Revenue. They are based on standard overnight and daytime rates.

Did Harney pay tax on these benefits in kind?
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:44 pm

I wonder did we pay for Bertie's canary coat?
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:44 pm

tonys wrote:
Respvblica wrote:
And what of MAry Harney's $410 hairdo in the US, which Mary Hannafin has defended as not a serious issue? Taxpayers money!!!

They have no concept of public duty. The sacred bond which they are meant to have as servants of the people!

We're the real eejits though for tolerating this plague of locusts.

Christ almighty, it’s bad enough with the silly old buggers on J. Duffy going on about the $410.00 hair do, but I would have hoped someone who can use a computer would understand, after it had been explained, a million bleedin’ times throughout the day, that the “hair do” was only a part of the bill, there were other services for other people included in the total of $410.00.

She was representing the country FFS!!, do we want her going around looking like Ken Dodd?


Ah I can imagine now the insult of it - a disheveled Mary Harney - and so not to make the mistake that Bertie did with his colourful pants at the G8, I guess we will now be obliged to dress these clowns up, less the country loses its credit ratings.

I wouldnt waste a cent of taxpayers money on them, but if you feel bad about the looks and style of our reps then your welcome to elect Rosanna Davidson or Pearse Brosnan come the next elecion.


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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:45 pm

floatingingalway wrote:
I wonder did we pay for Bertie's canary coat?

Who paid for the Charvet shirts?
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:48 pm

cactus flower wrote:
floatingingalway wrote:
I wonder did we pay for Bertie's canary coat?

Who paid for the Charvet shirts?
Well it wasnt his exellency anyway. More like the PAYE sector. How high was tax in the 1980s again? I remember my dad (a PAYE peasant) paying something like 50%
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:49 pm

Time there was a standard uniform issued for politicians, if they want us to pay for their clothes. Any suggestions?
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PostSubject: Re: Abolish Public Service bonuses   Thu Nov 27, 2008 8:51 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Time there was a standard uniform issued for politicians, if they want us to pay for their clothes. Any suggestions?
I'm thinking stripes, pyjama style, nice combo of blue and off-white.
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