6 Nov 2019, 03.46

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) will meet tomorrow, Thursday, at 9am with officials from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection.

The focus of the PAC’s examination will be the Department’s 2018 Appropriation  Account, the 2018 Social Insurance Fund and chapters from the C&AG’s 2018 annual report relating to the regularity of social welfare payments, the timeliness of income support claim processing and the development of income support application forms from the point of view of customer service.

The Department spent €10.7 billion in 2018 which was nearly €40m less than the estimate provision.  Significant items of expenditure included: Administration - €541m, Pensions - €1.02 billion,  Income and Employment Supports - €3.4 billion, Illness, Disability and Carers - €2.8 billion and Children - €2.6 billion.

The Social Insurance Fund which is managed by the Department accounts for PRSI contributions collected from employees, employers and the self-employed. This money is then used to fund social insurance payments which relate to retirement, illness, incapacity, unemployment, maternity and bereavement. A subvention is provided by the Exchequer where there is a gap  between income and expenditure.

 The 2018 Social Insurance Fund shows receipts of €11.2 billion and payments totalling €10.06 billion in the year. An Exchequer subvention was therefore not required in 2018.Chairman of the PAC, Seán Fleming TD, said: “The Committee will examine the Department which administers  and pays out a substantial amount of funds each year. The Committee will also resume  its discussion in relation to the Data Protection Commissioner’s recent report on the use the of the Public Services Card.”

The meeting, in Committee room 3 can be viewed live

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Committee membership

Deputies

Fianna Fáil

Fine Gael

Fianna Fáil

Independents 4 Change

Fine Gael

Fine Gael

Fianna Fáil

Labour Party

Fianna Fáil

Sinn Féin

Social Democrats