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Dublin: 18°C Wednesday 22 September 2021

No extra 4% bonus for 'exceptional' Irish Water workers

Irish Water workers can still get a bonus of 2.75% to 15% of their salary.

Irish Water's John Tierney.
Irish Water's John Tierney.
Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

EMPLOYEES OF IRISH Water can receive a performance related payment (PRA) of up to 15% of their salary, but the Department of the Environment said they won’t be getting the additional 4% bonus for “exceptional performance”.

Answering a parliamentary question from Independent TD Michael Healy Rae, the Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly said that Irish Water had indicated to the department that the maximum PRA element of pay ranges from 2.75% to 15%.

While I understand that the Ervia pay model allows for a further 4% performance-related award to be made in circumstances of exceptional performance, entirely at the discretion of the Board, I am assured by Ervia that the maximum percentages to be applied in Irish Water will be as set out in the range provided above.Furthermore, no decision has been made in relation to the payment of any PRAs in Irish Water at this time.

He added that the employment terms and conditions for Irish Water staff are a matter for the company and the particular pay model is something which was inherited from the parent company Ervia and is therefore was not directly put in place by Irish Water.

“Like other commercial semi-state bodies, pay models are negotiated between management and unions and are then subject to a ballot as necessary. This occurred in Ervia’s case and the pay model was implemented in 2011,” said Kelly.

A pay freeze will remain in place until 2016 as this is a key element of reducing overall payroll costs within the Group. As such, Irish Water does not pay increments or any form of automatic pay award; the pay model applied allows for part of salaries to be placed at risk and this element of pay is only earned subject to performance.Every individual in Irish Water has a clear set of objectives set for the year and a set of metrics against which performance is measured.

Kelly said Government will shortly consider proposals to establish a unified board arrangement for Ervia and Irish Water.

“One of the first actions that I will be asking the new Board to take will be to review the application and operation of the pay model outlined above in Irish Water, particularly in its start-up phase,” he said.

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