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Ray D'Arcy PA Archive/Press Association Images

Ray D'Arcy's salary will be 'more than covered' by sponsorship money

The incoming chair of RTÉ has been talking stars’ pay before an Oirechtas committee this morning.

SPONSORSHIP MONEY WILL “more than cover” the salary RTÉ is paying Ray D’Arcy, the incoming chair of the national broadcaster has said.

Moya Doherty made the comments before the Oireachtas Communications today where she came in for strong questioning from TDs over what RTÉ pays some of its star presenters.

Last month, D’Arcy announced he was leaving Today FM to take over the RTÉ Radio One slot previously occupied by Derek Mooney from 3pm to 4.30pm.

His new programme is due to start next week and the veteran broadcaster is also due to undertake a number of television projects with the station.

The 50-year-old’s salary at RTÉ is reported to be as high as €500,000, but D’Arcy insisted recently that he was being paid less than what he earned at Today FM.

RTÉ discloses the salaries of its stars every two years with their latest recruit’s pay to be made public in 2017.

moya Moya Doherty Oireachtas TV Oireachtas TV

Doherty said today she had been assured that the 18-month, six-figure sponsorship deal that RTÉ struck with Volkswagen recently would “more than cover the salary”.

She also claimed that half of the top 10 presenter salaries in Ireland are in the independent sector with RTÉ accounting for the other half.

An unimpressed O’Donovan said that the disclosure of RTÉ’s top salaries every two years would “not be acceptable anywhere else in the public sector”.

He quipped: “If this was Irish Water, there’d be Prime Time Specials from here to kingdom come.”

pod 2 Patrick O'Donovan Oireachtas TV Oireachtas TV

Doherty said that the information was commercially sensitive but she would take his concerns to the board and get their view.

She said that RTÉ had cuts costs dramatically in recent years with staff numbers reduced and operation costs reduced by €130 million.

She said that money spent on content “is being very tightly spent”.

Doherty, the co-creator of the Riverdance phenomenon, also confirmed to TDs and Senators that she is not, nor has she ever been, a member of a political party.

Read: Jenny Kelly and Will Hanafin are joining Ray D’Arcy at RTÉ

Read: 12 of Ray D’Arcy’s best moments in broadcasting so far

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