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The 9 at 9 We’re almost at the weekend (not to mention, finished with January). Here’s the nine things you need to know…

EVERY MORNING, brings you nine things you need to know with your morning cup of coffee.

1. #POINTS: The PAC will hear from a serving garda sergeant today on alleged malpractice in the penalty points system. The committee decided to push ahead with today’s session, in spite of the Justice Minister’s referral of the issue to the force watchdog, the Garda Ombudsman.

2. #LETTERS: Michael Noonan can’t confirm the exact number of personnel who would have had access to two letters relating to the period around the Bank Guarantee, which have gone missing from the Department of Finance. However, the Minister said the search for the documents was continuing.

3. #PUT OUT: The massive blaze at Ballymount has been extinguished, five days after it broke out. The fire at the recycling plant sent a huge plume of smoke over west Dublin for days. At its height, 75 firefighters were battling it.

4. #GILLIGAN: John Gilligan has been ordered to pay costs in relation to a failed Supreme Court challenge, the Irish Daily Star reports this morning.  The drug criminal had challenged a law under which consecutive sentences were imposed on him for having a mobile in prison.

5. #PANTI ROW: Journalist Breda O’Brien has said she accepts the apology made by RTÉ over comments made on The Saturday Night Show. The state broadcaster apologised and paid a financial settlement to O’Brien and others following the comments made on the chat-show by performer and gay rights advocate Rory O’Neill (aka Panti).

6. #REHAB: Ten senior managers at Rehab shared almost a million euro in pay last year. The Irish Times reports that the managers received €908,498 between them in 2013. The figures were given to the Dáil Public Accounts Committee by the HSE.

7. #CHILDREN: Taoiseach Enda Kenny will today launch the new Child and Family Agency, which will bring child services into one centralised regime. The agency will take over child protection from the HSE.

8. #ROUGH RIDE: “I felt he was being unreasonable and he felt I was being unreasonable so we decided to go our separate ways”: Paul Kimmage has revealed the reason he pulled out of ghost-writing Brian O’Driscoll’s book.

9. #FRIENDS IN COLD PLACES: Hundreds of Garth Brooks fans have been queuing overnight at Ticketmaster locations all over the country. Tickets go on sale this morning at 9am. The country superstar plays two comeback shows at Croke Park next July.

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