TDs declare multiple properties and shareholdings

Some TDs are renting out at least five properties, others are letting holiday homes in sunny tourist destinations or in plush southside Dublin addresses, and dozens more have shares with financial firms at the centre of the decade-long financial crisis.

TDs declare multiple properties and shareholdings

The details are revealed in the latest Dáil declarations of interest report for 2017, published yesterday.

According to the report, 30 TDs and a quarter of the Cabinet are renting out properties to the public.

The file also shows that 29 of the 158 TDs hold shares in firms including Bank of Ireland, the German stock exchange, Jersey-based insurance firms, and multinationals.

The 30 landlord TDs include Tánaiste Simon Coveney, who is renting a property in Harty’s Quay in Rochestown, Cork; and Social Protection Minister Regina Doherty, who is letting office space in Ashbourne, Co Meath, and has student accommodation in Limerick City.

Other ministers renting out properties include Agriculture Minister Michael Creed, who is letting two properties at the Railway View and The Lodge in Macroom, Co Cork; junior minister John Paul Phelan, who is renting two properties in Rathmines, south Dublin; and backbencher John Deasy who rents a holiday home in Sardinia.

A number of Fianna Fáil TDs are also landlords: Marc MacSharry rents a property in Galway in which he has a 50% stake; Robert Troy is involved in three properties in Mullingar and Dublin; and Eamon Scanlon rents four apartments in Ballymote, Co Sligo, in addition to a number of other properties.

The 2017 declarations list includes a breakdown of shares and directorships owned by TDs, with one in five confirming they hold shares in a variety of companies.

Among the most notable declarations are those of former finance minister Michael Noonan who has SPDR “gold shares”, and shares in the Ftse 100, Iseq index, and Germany stock exchange index fund.

The report also confirms that Independent TD Mattie McGrath was brought to the US by the pro-life Family and Life group in March last year.

In his declarations of interests “gifts” category, Mr McGrath confirms to the Oireachtas that his flights and accommodation were paid for by the Dublin-based group while he was in Washington DC and New York City last March.

The private visit coincided with then-taoiseach Enda Kenny’s meeting with US President Donald Trump during the St Patrick’s Day festivities.

The Family and Life group, which is registered with the Standards in Public Office, has held a number of fact-finding visits to the US in the past, while its accounts show it has regularly brought in over €1m in donations in previous years.

The declarations of interest list is drawn up by Oireachtas officials every year in order to provide transparency on potential conflicts of interests for national politicians.

Under the system, politicians are asked to volunteer information on their private interests so as to prevent any misunderstandings over the matters.

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