Irish Water manager had retired with €334k

Former Waterford county manager Ray O’Dwyer, who retired with a package totalling €334,000, has been appointed to a senior management position at Irish Water.

He is among four former local authority managers who is now part of the nine-person senior management team at the water utility company which has been embroiled in controversy over an €83m budget on consultancy contracts.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin yesterday asked the Taoiseach to confirm that former local authority managers who “received a lump sum on retirement as well as generous pension arrangements” have “moved seamlessly into senior-level positions at Irish Water, where they will enjoy bonuses”.

He asked why there was “so little emphasis” placed on external recruitment while a “significant number of senior staff” in Irish Water were hired from local authorities, from Bord Gáis, and from the Department of the Environment.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny said such information should be in the public domain, “there is nothing to hide”.

Mr O’Dwyer retired from Waterford County Council in Sept 2011 with a gross lump sum of €204,871.00, a gross severance gratuity of € 66,255 and an annual allowance of €63,335.

He was then appointed by Environment Minister Phil Hogan, to head up a dedicated programme management Office to support local public service reform — a position for which he was paid €11,750 per annum.

Irish Water last night confirmed Mr O’Dwyer is employed as head of operations and maintenance.

John Dempsey — head of finance in Irish Water — previously worked as head of finance in Kilkenny County Council.

Mr Tierney also worked at Kilkenny County Council before Galway City and Dublin City Councils.

Angela Costello — who previously worked at Dublin City Council — has been appointed as human resources manager.

Mr Tierney told the Oireachtas committee last week “all of the roles on the management team were filled by open recruitment”.

A spokesperson for the company said last night they could not comment on pension arrangements of senior management from previous employment.

Mr Kenny told the Dáil yesterday that the bonus system for staff in Irish Water is based on a union agreement reached in Bord Gáis.

He has asked the environment minister to ask Irish Water to “provide him with the full information on those criteria that apply in the case of Uisce Éireann”.

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