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Garda management says 'technical error' led to overpayment of probationers

They were contacted today so arrangements could be made to deal with repayment.

GARDA MANAGEMENT HAS confirmed that a “technical error” led to 196 probationer gardaí being overpaid over a period of months.

Some of the force’s newest recruits received payslips last night indicating hundreds of euro would be taken from their wages. In a statement, management said this was due to an error at the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform’s Payroll Shared Services Centre.

It is understood these gardaí were paid salary increments despite a pay freeze in July.

For 97 of them, this amounted to an overpayment of €487 each. For 99, it amounted to  €221 each.

At this time, no money has been taken back from them. However, they have all been contacted today “for this overpayment to be managed”.

The Garda Representative Association’s (GRA) general secretary Pat Ennis earlier told reporters it was an “unfortunate systems failure”.

He said there would be “arrangements made with individual members to deal with the repayment of the overpayment in an agreed manner”.

However, he said he hoped pay negotiations would conclude successfully and arrears would not be required to be paid.

The issue was identified by an audit in late October 2016.

Garda management said it only became aware of the issue late last night and “moved as quickly as possible to clarify the situation”.

These 197 gardaí are all expected to report for duty during tomorrow’s strike. Their salary, which had been bumped up to €25,472 by the “technical error”, has now reverted back to €23,750.

Read: Probationer gardaí to owe State up to €800 after pay error>

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