An Garda Siochána has received more than €30m in fees since 2010 to police the likes of Guns N’ Roses and Robbie Williams concerts along with All-Ireland finals and other sporting events.
New figures provided show that last year, gardaí received €5.2m for policing music, sporting and other events — the highest amount since 2010.
A breakdown of the payout last year shows that gardaí received €1.42m for policing sport events and a further €1.27m for policing concerts and festivals.
A further €2.5m was paid out to the gardaí to police ‘other events’.
The Garda bill for policing in 2015 was €4.64m; €4.45m in 2014; €2.86m in 2013; €4.12m in 2012; €4m in 2011; and €3.34m in 2010.
The Garda bill for the first five months of this year stands at €1.74m broken down between €1m for other events; €521,275 for sporting events and €149,150 for concerts and festivals.
The figures are contained in a letter provided by Tánaiste and former minister for justice, Frances Fitzgerald, arising from a written Dáil question on the issue by Sinn Féin finance spokesman, Pearse Doherty.
According to the Tánaiste, the objective in charging for police services is to recover the cost of providing the service.
The Tánaiste said gardaí do not seek to recover costs for charitable events or for statutory national public events such as policing the St Patrick’s Day parade as these duties are funded by the public purse.
The Tánaiste also said charitable events relate to events organised with the objective of providing a charitable service to the community.
In response, Mr Doherty said: “Although the minister says the charges only apply to commercial events, it is my experience that community organised events are also charged. These events do have a community benefit and indeed an economic benefit to the area.
“The new minister needs to examine this area so that genuine community events are not charged for policing.”
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