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Political parties received €12.6 million of taxpayers money last year

A total of €12.6 million was given to parliamentarians last year.

Image: Niall Carson/PA Archive/Press Association Images

Updated 31/05/2015

FIGURES FROM THE Standards in Public Office Commission have been released showing how much State funding parliamentarians received in 2014.

In total parties, received €12.6 million, with independent members of the Dáil receiving €563,866 and independent members of the Seanad receiving €249,130. 

Money given is to allow parliamentarians to carry out administration, training, research and other duties related to their work in the Oireachtas.

Who received what? 

Money is distributed under two pieces of legislation: the Electoral Act 1997 and the Parliamentary Activities Allowance legislation.

The main political parties receive funding under the Electoral Act while the Parliamentary Activities Allowance legislation covers a broader range of recipients.

The four biggest parties in the Dáil: Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, Sinn Féin and The Labour Party, were all eligible to receive money under the Electoral Act 1997. This money is not subject to income tax and parties are forbidden from using it for electoral or referendum purposes.

electoral act funding Source: Standards in Public Office Commission

Full details of how the political parties spent money given out under the Electoral Act can be viewed here. 

Fine Gael was the biggest recipient, receiving more than €2.2 million. Sinn Féin received the smallest amount of €720,000.

Under the Parliamentary Activities Allowance legislation, money was given to the parliamentary party leaders of seven parties. These were the Anti Austerity Alliance, Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, the People before Profit, Sinn Féin, Stop the Water Tax – Socialist Party, and The Labour Party.

The money given out to parliamentary leaders amounted to €7.117 million.

electoral act funding - 1 Source: Standards in Public Office Commission

Non-party members of the Dáil and the Seanad were entitled to a similar payment under the Parliamentary Activities Allowance. This amounted to a total of €563,866 for independent members of the Dáil and €249,130 for independent members of the Seanad.

– First published 29/05/2015

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