Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Questions (158)

Stephen Donnelly


158. Deputy Stephen S. Donnelly asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he will ensure that gardaí are paid all outstanding allowances in December for hours worked in November this year, rather than in January, as has been the case in previous years; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [50905/13]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I have been informed by the Garda Commissioner that overtime and unsocial hours payments are paid to members of An Garda Síochána up to and including the rank of Inspector. Members are paid these allowances on a 28 day roster basis, in arrears, with the payment process commencing at the beginning of each pay roster period in respect of work carried out during the previous period. There are 13 such periods in each year and there are 13 payments made each year to members of An Garda Síochána based on individual claims submitted by members. There are no plans at present to change this arrangement.

The majority of members receive this payment on the third Thursday after the end of a particular roster period. In the case of the period which ends on 8 December, this would be due to be paid on 26 December. However, the year-end payrolls are brought forward due to such matters as extra bank holidays which occur during the Christmas and New Year periods, the testing of new computer software to cater for any budgetary changes, inputting of payroll reference data changes for 2014 and the high volume of payroll administration required at the Financial Year End. This in turn means that the payroll date of 26 December has to be brought forward to 19 December. The payroll data for that pay date must be submitted by 6 December 2013.

The practice outlined above has always been the case and is not a new development. Garda members always have received and will continue to receive 13 payments each year for 13 four week periods. It must also be remembered that with regard to normal salary payments, Gardaí are paid on a weekly basis and will receive their pay up to and including the pay day of 26 December before the end of the year. In fact, they will receive their salary payment for the paydays of 19 and 26 December in advance of Christmas on 17 and 19 December respectively.