‘Rehab not subject to public pay policy’

Organisations and charities such as the Rehab Group which receive over €250,000 of taxpayer funding should adhere to public pay policy, Health Minister James Reilly told the Dáil yesterday.

He was responding to Sinn Féin’s Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin who asked why the HSE has not requested from Rehab details of its CEO Angela Kerins’ annual salary, which was reported to be in the region of €230,000 in 2011.

A special meeting of the Rehab Group board is due to go ahead on Monday when it will “consider” revealing Ms Kerins’ renumeration package.

“It is critically important to ensure... when we give money for charitable purposes, we can have confidence that the money is spent in the manner for which it was intended, namely for services for those in need of them. That remains our position,” said Dr Reilly.

He said Rehab was a Section 39 agency and was not subject to public pay policy. Section 39 organisations receive public funding but they operate commercial activities whose revenue can comprise the majority of their income.

His comments came as the Oireachtas’s financial watchdog said it expected to invite Rehab to appear before it over the next few weeks.

John McGuinness, chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, said the meeting would examine all aspects of its funding.

A spokesman for the group said it was happy to appear before the PAC but it had not yet received a formal invitation.

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