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The 9 at 9: Thursday

Nine things you should know this morning…

Image: .Larry Page via Flickr

EVERY DAY, TheJournal.ie brings you nine things you need to know with your morning cup of coffee.

1. #TALK TALK: Minister for Jobs Richard Bruton has said he will travel to Waterford and meet with staff and management at broadband firm Talk Talk, which yesterday announced it was shutting its phone support facility and laying off 575 workers. There is shock in the city at the job losses, with local Labour TD Ciara Conway calling it a “dark day for Waterford”.

2. #HSE: The HSE has said it is “examining historical work practices” after it emerged that some hospital consultants are entitled to a full year of holiday on full pay before they retire. The contractual arrangement is projected to cost the health service €103million unless a new agreement can be struck, the Irish Times reports.

3. #BONDHOLDERS: Finance minister Michael Noonan is reportedly seeking a meeting with European Central Bank president Jean-Claude Trichet, in the hope of avoiding Ireland having to pay €1billion of debt owed by Anglo Irish Bank to unsecured senior bondholders. According to Arthur Beesley in the Irish Times, Noonan must win approval from the ECB if the bondholders are to take the losses.

4. #TAX: Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s pledge not to raise income taxes this year appears to be on the rocks. Shaun Connolly in the Irish Examiner reports this morning that the promise can only be kept if the IMF/EU/ECB ‘troika’ agree to it; while yesterday the Taoiseach admitted that “everything is on the table” in the upcoming Budget.

5. #EMIGRANTS: People who leave Ireland to find work elsewhere should keep the right to vote in elections, Labour presidential candidate Michael D Higgins has said. He suggested that emigrants should stay on the electoral register for ten years, according to Mark Hennessy in the Irish Times. Meanwhile, Sinead Moran writes for TheJournal.ie this morning about her bad experience as a returning emigrant.

6. #ECB: There’s some good news for Irish homeowners this morning. RTÉ reports that ECB chiefs are due to meet in Frankfurt this morning and are expected to row back on plans to further increase interest rates – meaning mortgage payers here won’t face a hike in their monthly payments.

7. #GADDAFI: The hunt for Muammar Gaddafi is continuing today after a phone message from the fugitive Libyan leader was broadcast on a Syrian TV station. In the message, Gaddafi denied widespread speculation that he had fled to neighbouring Niger and urged his supporters to “rise against” rebels who now control most cities in Libya.

8. #REPUBLICAN PARTY: The battle for nomination as the Republican candidate for the US presidency is heating up after eight hopefuls squared off in a debate in California last night. It was the first debate to include Texas governor Rick Perry, who has emerged as a frontrunner in the polls since joining the race -which now looks like a battle between Perry and main rival Mitt Romney, the Independent reports.

9. #SNOOPING: Ever feel the urge to check your partner’s Facebook? ‘Cyber snooping’ is a growing trend among couples, according to a new study. One in five women in the UK admitted to having secretly logged on to their partner’s email or social networking sites, the Huffington Post reports, with one in ten men doing the same.

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About the author:

Michael Freeman

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