Richard Bruton: State can’t take on collapsed firms’ debt

Education Minister Richard Bruton

Education Minister Richard Bruton has said the State cannot intercede and take on the private debts of companies that go into liquidation.

He was commenting after building subcontractors went to a school construction site in Carlow and removed equipment they installed and have not been paid for. They took large railings from the perimeter wall of Tyndall College’s new school building and placed them on a flatbed truck.

Work on five schools stopped in January after UK construction company Carillion went bust. Since then Irish company Sammon Construction has gone into liquidation, leaving subcontractors without being paid.

This is a real problem and we recognise that. From the state’s point of view our obligation is to meet the payments to DIF when they complete the school. But as in any liquidation, the State cannot pick up private debts,” the minister said.

“The position is that the State entered into a PPP contract with DIF which is the remaining holder of that contract. DIF is obliged to complete the schools. It is very regrettable that as a result of the liquidation of Carillion and following that Sammon, a number of sub contractors have been left without payment and many workers have been made redundant.”

At Tyndall College, gardaí stopped the subcontractors from removing more equipment.

More on this topic

National debt hit €206bn last yearNational debt hit €206bn last year

Garda warning over websites which offer unsecured loansGarda warning over websites which offer unsecured loans

Taoiseach's comments 'bizarre and out of touch', says Fianna Fáil's McGrathTaoiseach's comments 'bizarre and out of touch', says Fianna Fáil's McGrath

Custom House Capital investor compensation claims will take yearsCustom House Capital investor compensation claims will take years


Lifestyle

Orlagh Kelly owns The Reading Room bookshop on Main Street in Carrick-on-Shannon in Co Leitrim.We sell books: The Reading Room - ‘Small bookshops, curated by people who care, make a difference’

As Stockton’s Wing release a retrospective album, Mike Hanrahan tells Donal O’Keeffe about getting back on the road, and his love of cookingStill a beautiful affair: Mike Hanrahan talks about getting back on the road with Stockton's Wing

An ongoing cull is resulting in a major reduction in the deer population in one of the country’s most visited natural attractions.Donal Hickey: Deer birth patterns evolving

A Courtmacsherry neighbour, Kathy Gannon tells me that when the tide is out, the vast acres of clean, grey mud of the bay reflect the sun in splendour in the clear, sharp air.Damien Enright: ‘How enchanting for humanity that we have birds’

More From The Irish Examiner