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Top civil servant to retire, aged 55, with €430,000 package

Meanwhile, Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform has revealed that one civil servant has taken a voluntary pay cut of more than 50 per cent.

Michael Scanlan is to retire in April.
Michael Scanlan is to retire in April.
Image: Photocall Ireland

THE CURRENT SECRETARY General at the Department of Health is to retire later this year with a lump sum and severance payment of over €430,000.

The Department of Health has confirmed that Michael Scanlan’s seven-year-term will come to an end on 8 April. He will be 55-years-old and clocked up nearly 38-and-a-half years working in the civil service.

The department said that, in accordance with his contract, he qualifies for a pension of €107,795, as well as a lump sum of €323,385 and a severance gratuity of €107,795.

As he is retiring after 29 February, the amounts are based on his final salary – after cuts made under the financial emergency legislation introduced. The severance gratuity is one half of his annual salary and he is eligible for a pension and lump sum based on his actual service plus 1.5 added years.

It is therefore much lower than some of his counterparts that retired before 29 February this year.

Last year, civil servants Sean Gorman and Dermot McCarthy caused massive controversy as they received retirement packages of over €630,000 and €700,000 respectively. The Government then set about to make changes to the arrangements of the exceptionally generous pension regimes.

Scanlan also steps down from his position as chairman of the HSE but has said he will play “an appropriate role after his retirement, on a pro-bono basis”.

The Top Level Appointments Committee are making arrangements to appoint a successor by open competition. Any new appointment will not be guaranteed severance payments, immediate pensions or added years.

Meanwhile, Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Brendan Howlin told the Dáil that an anonymous senior public servant has taken a 50 per cent pay cut voluntarily.

“We have moved remarkably, but we cannot look on public servants as an amorphous group to be squeezed to solve all of our problems,” he said in response to questions about public service pay from Independent TD Stephen Donnelly.

“A couple of years ago, a Secretary General in my Department would have been earning €285,000. He is now earning €200,000. The €85,000 cut is an extraordinary reduction, and we have applied that across the board…,” said Howlin.

“We have an agreement, namely, the Croke Park agreement, under which we are bringing about objectively significant and radical reforms.”

More: Future senior civil servants face pension changes from today>

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