Culture of secrecy revealed by report into CRC

A report into the Central Remedial Clinic has revealed a determination to keep information from the HSE and the public on its funding streams and its chief executive’s pay packet.

Culture of secrecy revealed by report into CRC

When the body eventually recognised that it would have to disclose its CEO’s €233,000 salary, it decided to terminate his employment as part of a €2m savings plan of which he was the main beneficiary.

Interim administrator appointed to the CRC John Cregan said the clinic was far more concerned with the publicity surrounding its former CEO Paul Kiely’s pay than it was about the figures involved.

“The available evidence points to the CRC board being more concerned about the company’s independence and the attention that revealing the level of the CEO’s remuneration would attract rather than the level of remuneration itself,” said Mr Cregan.

The administrator said Mr Kiely’s goodbye package was presented by the ex-CEO and was agreed by the board without amendment. This occurred even though the terms mistakenly overstated his salary entitlements in calculating his €741,000 pay off. Mr Cregan said any overpayments should be returned.

The exit package was funded through a sister company which took in charitable donations.

Mr Cregan also said the clinic channelled the donations and lottery support through this firm, the Friends and Supporters of the CRC, in order to avoid disclosing its full financial position to the HSE.

“Ultimately, the [charitable] funds bankrolled CRC board decisions in relation to pensions and executive pay,” he said.

The report also said the scandals involving the CRC had a significant impact on its fundraising.

In a statement, the new board of governors welcomed Mr Cregan’s report.

The former chairman, Hamilton Goulding, also released a statement to say the reported cleared him and his board of any potentially criminal behaviour.

However, he rejected its findings in relation to the arrangements for Mr Keily’s departure and information sharing with the HSE.

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