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Saturday 3 June 2023 Dublin: 17°C
The 9 at 9 Nine things to know by 9am: More details on Budget 2012 pain, Archbishop denies media “anti-Catholic bias”, good news from BoI, and the end of Janet’s X Factor odyssey

EVERY MORNING, brings you nine things you need to know before 9am…

1. #BUDGET 2012: With a week to go, more details about the €3.8bn Budget are being confirmed. Last night environment minister Phil Hogan told RTÉ’s The Week in Politics programme that motor tax would be raised, with both adjustments in the bands of tax as well as in the rates themselves.

2. #BUDGET 2012: The government will this week pave the way for its budget by pushing some significant legislation through the Dáil – including bills to cut the pay of judges, in line with the recent referendum, and one to impose a universal household charge. The former is being given a little over three hours’ debating time in the Dáil, while the latter bill is getting five hours’ worth of debate.

3. #SEARCH AND RESCUE: Efforts are resuming this morning to search for the five missing crewmen from the MV Swanland, the cargo vessel which sank off the Welsh coast in the early hours of yesterday morning. Two men from the crew of eight were rescued yesterday morning, while the body of a third was recovered yesterday by the Irish Coast Guard.

4. #KEVIN REYNOLDS: The Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Diarmuid Martin, has made his first public comments on the fallout from the Kevin Reynolds affair – telling Morning Ireland that while he does not believe there is a fundamental “anti-Catholic bias” in the media, that there are some journalists who are prejudiced against Catholicism. He also asked how the Kevin Reynolds story was aired when the allegations were proven to be ‘baseless’ such a short time later.

5. #SMITHWICK: Real IRA member Michael McKevitt will today give evidence to the Smithwick Tribunal, which is investigating alleged Garda collusion in the murder of two RUC police officers. McKevitt, who is serving a 20-year sentence for Real IRA activities, was close to those who organised the attack at the time it was carried out, in March 1989.

6. #RATINGS AGENCY: The European debt crisis has now become so severe that the ratings agency Moody’s says it is anticipating “multiple defaults”, with at least one country set to leave the euro – and that it is set to reconsider the credit rating of every eurozone member state.

7. #BANK OF IRELAND: The only Irish bank which remains outside majority State ownership has this morning knocked almost another €500m off the bill for bailing it out – announcing the sale of a loans division to a Japanese bank.

8. #EGYPT: The people of Egypt are today voting in the country’s open first parliamentary election of the post-Mubarak era. The leader of the country’s military cabinet says the country is “at a crossroads” and has urged the two leading presidential candidates to back the military nominee for Prime Minister.

9. #EX FACTOR: Janet Devlin’s X Factor odyssey has come to an end, after the 17-year-old Tyrone girl was voted off the show by a judges’ decision last night. Devlin’s elimination completes an ignominious hat-trick for Irish entrants – her fifth-place finish is the third year running (after Jedward and Mary Byrne) that an Irish act has come fifth.

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