Irish Water has paid out more than €10.1m in performance related pay to its staff over the past two years.
Bonus pay to workers at the utility was up more than 4% last year when it paid €5.176m to 789 eligible employees.
That was up from the €4.96m that was splashed out in 2020 to 765 eligible employees, according to figures released under FOI.
Irish Water declined to provide a list of the top 20 performance-related payments during the past two years, saying this could identify individual employees.
However, they said the average performance related award among the top 20 staff during 2021 had worked out at €19,171 per person.
That was slightly lower than the figure in 2020 when the 20 staff in receipt of the highest bonuses shared €385,460, or €19,273 each.
Irish Water said that their managing director was not eligible for such a bonus and was not included in the figures that were released.
The water utility said all the performance-related pay was fully taxable and did not count for calculation of pensions when staff retired.
They said it was directly linked to “rigorously assessed performance” against pre-agreed individual, team, and company targets.
A full detailed mid-year review was carried out for each employee with another year-end review before a “final rating” was decided.
Irish Water kept overtime costs to the bare minimum over the past two years with just €116,000 paid out to a small number of staff for working out-of-hours.
Last year, 22 employees shared €52,655 in overtime while in 2020, costs were €64,089 paid to 34 separate staff.
According to the figures, the average payment for the top twenty overtime earners in 2021 was €2,629, down from €3,095 in 2020.
The utility said overtime was only worked where necessary, and that the timing and duration was at the discretion of management.
Overtime is paid during the week at a rate of one and a half times pay between normal finishing hour to midnight, and at double time in the early hours of the morning.
Double time is also paid for all work carried out on Sundays and Bank Holidays, they said.
A spokesman said:
“It meets the utility’s criteria to have a pay model that was fully compatible with Irish Water’s desire to promote a high-performance culture whilst controlling costs to create a sustainable business.
“It is also a key element in Irish Water’s ability to retain and attract staff now and into the future to ensure the utility continues to provide essential public water services.”