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Five TDs spent almost €4,000 between them printing Christmas material using Oireachtas facility

51 different TDs and senators used the Oireachtas printer in the run up to Christmas.

Image: Shutterstock/Alina Bitta

FIANNA FÁIL’S NIALL Collins spent more taxpayer money using an Oireachtas service to print Christmas calendars and cards than any other TD ahead of the festive season.

Figures released to The Journal under the Freedom of Information Act show that Collins, his party colleague Willie O’Dea, Sinn Féin’s John Brady and the Healy-Rae brothers all had Christmas material printed for them at a cost of hundreds of Euro late last year.

Overall, 51 different TDs and senators used the Oireachtas printer in the run-up to Christmas at a cost of €6,428.96, but the five TDs above were responsible for more than half the total cost between them. 

Collins, the Minister of State for Skills and Further Education and a TD for Limerick County, was the only deputy whose Christmas material cost more than €1,000.

He ordered 36,000 A4-sized calendars in October 2021 at a cost of €1,194.31 to the taxpayer.

The next-highest spender was Independent TD for Kerry Michael Healy-Rae, who had 20,000 A4 calendars, 300 A3 calendars and 500 Christmas cards printed in early November at a cost of €813.77.

His brother Danny Healy-Rae, also an Independent for Kerry, had an additional 8,000 A4 calendars, 650 A3 calendars and 1,500 Christmas cards printed the same month at a cost of €451.67.

Sinn Féin’s John Brady, the party’s spokesperson for Foreign Affairs and Defence, printed 20,000 A4 calendars in mid-November at a cost of €751.04.

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And Fianna Fáil’s Willie O’Dea, who ordered a higher quantity of material than any other Oireachtas member, had 38,000 Christmas cards printed in late November at a cost of €646.04.

Only four other members printed material that cost more than €100: Fine Gael senator Maria Byrne (4,000 Christmas cards for €157.08); Fianna Fáil senator Robbie Gallagher (3,000 A4 calendars for €135.71); Fine Gael TD Patrick O’Donovan (3,000 A4 calendars for €126.56) and Fine Gael TD Paul Kehoe (2,000 Christmas cards for €102.14).

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