As I have stated, the Department of Defence, in conjunction with the Defence Forces, made a submission to the Public Service Pay Commission. This is specifically mentioned by the commission in paragraph 6.13 of the report. Following the publication of the report of the Public Service Pay Commission on 9 May 2017, the Government initiated negotiations on an extension to the Lansdowne Road agreement ahead of budget 2018 considerations.
Both the Representative Association of Commissioned Officers, RACO, and the Permanent Defence Force Other Ranks Representative Association, PDFORRA, were invited to the negotiations which were held under the auspices of the Workplace Relations Commission, WRC. The Defence Forces representative associations attended and participated in all plenary sessions which were attended by public sector trade unions, representative associations and management. Senior officials from the Department of Defence and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and the Defence Forces representative associations also had their own meetings, which were chaired by officials from the WRC.
The issues raised by the Defence Forces representative associations were considered in tandem with those raised by other public sector representative associations and trade unions. The Defence Forces have received the benefits of collective agreements in the past and it is intended that future remuneration of Defence Forces personnel will continue to be dealt with within this process.
The Public Service Stability Agreement 2018-2020 contains proposals for a 7.25% increase over the period of the agreement for those earning less than €30,000 per annum, a 6.75% increase over the period of the agreement for those earning under €32,000 per annum, and a 5.75% increase over the period of the agreement for those earning over €32,000 per annum. The proposals have been presented to both PDFORRA and RACO, which participated in the negotiation process. They will now be subject to ballot by members of the associations.
Officials in the Department continue to engage regularly with both representative associations. An example of one of the benefits of these negotiations is that an agreement was reached earlier this year between the Department of Defence, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform and PDFORRA on a revised pay scale for general service recruits and privates who joined the Permanent Defence Force after 1 January 2013.