By Daniel McConnell
The president of Cork Institute of Technology has been paid €227,956 in a pension lump sum and an annual pension of €78,315 from the college despite still occupying the post, the Public Accounts Committee has been told.
The college has also revealed it was involved in 20 legal cases in “matters related to staff issues” despite previously telling the Irish Examiner it was not involved in any cases.
Brendan Murphy, who was reappointed to the post on a five-year term in 2014 despite nearing retirement age, has been paid his pension plus half his original salary since he reached 65, the college has told the committee.
Documents from CIT to the PAC, seen by this newspaper, have detailed the terms of the pension, which has kicked in despite him continuing in the post. However, since then, the college has clarified the president is on contract up to August 31, and will retire at that date.
“The president receives his normal pension at retirement age and the institute pays only the difference between the normal salary and the pension amount,” said a spokeswoman.
“The institute makes a saving of half the president’s salary.”
The college has been at the centre of staunch criticism from members of the PAC in recent months and recently submitted an 18-point clarification document to committee members.
According to the documents, €1,108,927 was spent by the college on legal costs from 2014 to 2016 to deal with cases including staff issues.
“CIT was involved in 20 cases that may be categorised as ‘matters relating to staff issues’, one allegation of ‘protected disclosures’ made to CIT, and two cases that may be categorised as involving ‘allegations of bullying,” the documents said.
The documents also detailed a total of €459,377 in payments to 11 retired senior members of staff between the years 2012 to 2017 including to a former vice president.
This article first appeared in today's Irish Examiner.