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Defence Dept Spared in Budget Cuts...For Now

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  • Defence Dept Spared in Budget Cuts...For Now

    Finance Dept details cost-cutting plans
    watch listen Wednesday, 9 July 2008 22:10

    The Department of Finance has published a summary breakdown detailing the savings and efficiencies included in the €440m of spending cutbacks announced yesterday.

    It shows that the largest savings are to be made in the Department of Health and Children, where €144m is to be shaved off the Department's budget.

    This includes €85m saved as a result of the delayed introduction of the Fair Deal for long-term care of the elderly as well as another €50m of policy-related savings and €9m from efficiencies.
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    The second highest savings of €83m are to come from the Department of Finance. €5m of this is related to efficiencies within the department including savings on consultancies, payroll and administrative budgets.

    The vast bulk of the Finance savings come from the Office of Public Works, most of which relate to the postponement of the Government's decentralisation programme.

    The third highest savings are to be made at the Department of Environment where €48m is to be cut from the budget for 2008.

    The bulk of this amount is accounted for by deferring planned investment by the Gateway Innovation Fund associated with the National Spatial Strategy. The remaining amount will be accounted for by departmental efficiencies including administrative and payroll savings.

    The Department of Social and Family affairs is to come up with €30m in savings. The majority of this amount - €25m - is to achieved through better control measures on various social welfare schemes. The remaining €5m will be saved through administration and payroll efficiencies.

    The construction slowdown is expected to result in fewer apprenticeships in FÁS and this, as well as other measures, will save the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment about €10m in the second half of this year.

    On top of this another €15m is to be saved from administrative, payroll and other efficiencies to be made by the Department.

    The next largest savings are to be made by the Department of Transport where €22m is to be saved, mainly as a result of delays and deferrals of a range of capital or infrastructure development projects.

    The breakdown also reveals that, taking all Government Departments together, the total amount to be saved on payroll costs during the second half of this year is just €10m.

    In addition a total of €21m is to be saved by all departments on consultancies, advertising, and public relations activities. Another €39m in total has been earmarked for savings to be made by agencies and other efficiencies.

    Cowen warns of further measures

    This morning the Taoiseach told the Dáil that further economic decisions may be needed to deal with the current downturn.

    Brian Cowen was defending his Government's package of savings at Leaders' Questions this morning ahead of a two-day debate on the measures which got under way this afternoon.

    Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny said the decision to claw back money earmarked for the Government's nursing home scheme was heartless and sacrilegious.

    Mr Cowen though said these funds were ring fenced and could not be allocated this year because the legislation was not ready.

    Labour leader Eamon Gilmore wanted to know if there was going to be a drip feed of what he called sneaky cuts and stealth taxes through the summer.

    The Taoiseach conceded there might be further decisions required in response to what he said was a serious situation.

    Pressed on the details of yesterday's package, he said some capital projects would be deferred and that ministers would give a fuller account in the debate.

    Details of exactly how each department will be affected by the cutbacks will be announced by individual ministers during the course of nine hours of debate.

    The Dáil was supposed to have started its summer break last Thursday - but a further sitting week was agreed to debate the economy.

    Yesterday the Government brought forward its plans for dealing with falling tax revenues, with plans to save €440m in the current year, and €1bn next year.

    Opposition parties complained of a lack of detail, and suggested the Government's figures did not add up.

    For the current year, the Government is hoping to save up to €20m in payroll savings; €50m in efficiencies that were flagged in the Budget; and another €21m on advertising, public relations and consultancy fees.

    The balance will come from departmental spending, although the Government pledges frontline services will not be affecte

  • #2
    Looks like recruitment is back on plan then...

    Comment


    • #3
      Isn't the Dept planning on closing half a dozen barracks anyway? That will achieve substantial savings in running costs. SDA alone will be cut by well over €1 milllion per annum.

      Martina Devlin has the answer to all our problems.

      Hard times? So let's scrap the Army . . .

      By Martina Devlin
      Thursday July 03 2008

      The time for prudent housekeeping and economic caution has passed. What we need now is daring, reforming initiatives.
      Let's start by scrapping the Army. Maintaining one is a cast-off concept from British Empire days and has no place in a modern republic.
      Besides, it costs us €1bn to run the entire Defence Forces. Since we have no desire to invade Zimbabwe, or indeed any other country, they're an extravagance. I cringe when I see guards of honour lining up when new ambassadors present their credentials. A pot of tea and fruit scone is welcome enough at the Aras.
      No army means no peace-keeping missions to Chad and other countries, but Ireland shouldn't be sending military abroad anyway. I don't doubt the soldiers' efforts, but if we must contribute, let's despatch doctors and nurses.
      With the soldiers decommissioned we can sell off their barracks, starting with the Curragh -- even in a declining property market that will generate funds.
      The Air Corps can go, too, but we'll have to keep the Naval Service. An island nation must protect its waters -- from predatory fishermen, among others.
      How about introducing a congestion charge along the London model? It works -- and it's a revenue earner.
      Cancel decentralisation. It was a costly mistake but let's not throw good money after bad.
      We can't afford the Metro; instead we should set up a fleet of buses to run services to Dublin Airport from all corners through the Port Tunnel. CIE must not be involved -- private operators are the key.
      Review Irish embassies and ambassadors' residences worldwide. Mansions are an unjustifiable luxury; we can house them in smart apartments and rent hotel rooms for official entertaining.
      Start metering water. Allocate an adequate quantity to every household and charge for surplus use. If nothing else, it will teach us to be less wasteful.
      Hand over holiday homes which benefit from tax relief to people on social housing lists. Councils pay rent to the owners, those on waiting lists get a home -- everybody wins.
      Scrap all tribunals. They have done the State some service but the costs are out of control. Allow tribunals currently running two months to conclude hearings, and a further four months to compile final reports. Late dossiers will result in lawyers' fees being docked.
      High time to pull the plug on the Seanad. Those well-intentioned windbags can join gentlemen's clubs and pontificate there at their own expense.
      Halve the number of TDs. With 166 deputies, we have more than six per county. Any more and each family would have their own deputy (just as some families seem to have their own seat).
      We can manage with three TDs per county on average -- assign an extra one to the larger urban areas and subtract one from thinly populated counties. That would leave 78 TDs, just under 50pc of current numbers.
      We're awash with junior ministries. I say we keep a half-dozen maximum for bigger departments and apply a slash and burn policy to the remaining 14 ministers of state and all their trappings.
      Now with the Army gone, we no longer need the Department of Defence so that's an instant cost-saving.
      Furthermore, we can amalgamate several other departments: Agriculture can bunk up with Environment, and let's lob in Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs with Arts, Sport and Tourism. Three fewer departments add up to hefty savings on civil servants.
      Ministerial cars and chauffeurs are ripe for reform. Mercedes are ostentatious -- a fuel-efficient saloon is more than sufficient. And send those garda drivers back on the beat. If John Gormley and Eamon Ryan can cycle themselves, the rest can drive themselves. I don't buy that line about ministers working in the back seat because reading in cars gives most people motion sickness.
      The sheer numbers of Dail committees, quangos and government agencies would make your head spin. In a word: reduce.
      Sell our 25pc stake in Aer Lingus to raise €170m. Holding on to one-quarter gives us no power, as we saw at Shannon when the London route was moved to Belfast.
      Every surplus-making state-owned body should pay a dividend to the Exchequer. Bord Gais, the ESB and Bord na Mona, I'm talking about you.
      Artists' affiliation Aosdana is gone. Nobody owes anybody a living. They can keep their club and paraphernalia if it matters to them, they just can't have taxpayers picking up the bill any longer.
      No more high-handed gestures of misplaced generosity such as the €2m gift Bertie gave the Kennedy Library Foundation during his recent visit to the States. A piece of carved bog oak would be plenty.
      The Army's final task before disbanding can be to pulverise the e-voting machines. There you go, Taoiseach, a few ideas for the Government to get its teeth into -- and not a consultancy bill in sight.
      www.martinadevlin.com mdevlin@independent.ie
      http://www.independent.ie/opinion/co...y-1425904.html
      Groundhog
      Chief of the Diet Tribe
      Last edited by Groundhog; 10 July 2008, 17:59.
      sigpic
      Say NO to violence against Women

      Originally posted by hedgehog
      My favourite moment was when the
      Originally posted by hedgehog
      red headed old dear got a smack on her ginger head

      Comment


      • #4
        Not spared yet. In todays Indo the DOD is to make 4.5 million in cut backs. €2.5million relating to reserves, described as coming from "from the rescheduling of recruitment in the reserves. As a result, those retiring this year will not be immediately replaced."

        Whatever that means!!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Bravo20 View Post
          Not spared yet. In todays Indo the DOD is to make 4.5 million in cut backs. €2.5million relating to reserves, described as coming from "from the rescheduling of recruitment in the reserves. As a result, those retiring this year will not be immediately replaced."

          Whatever that means!!
          It means the suspension of RDF recruitment for this year anyway. And more than likely PDF recruitment also.
          sigpic
          Say NO to violence against Women

          Originally posted by hedgehog
          My favourite moment was when the
          Originally posted by hedgehog
          red headed old dear got a smack on her ginger head

          Comment


          • #6
            well it starting to bite ,willy would not want to be left out of( or be allowed ) the aren't i a good boy saving money club
            perhaps a scraping of the advertising campaign for the reserve which was tendered for ,,,
            hopefully the PDF who depend on the DF for a living will be least badly effected ,,

            o and in martin devlins wonderful pixy land we should get rid of the guards because crime has no place in his modern republic either,and when 12 farmers with rusty shotguns tired of EU subsidy cuts decide to band together for some regime change he can write about it in his paper ,, it is an insult to the hard work and dedication of all those in the DF ,,
            greyfox
            the gunney
            Last edited by greyfox; 10 July 2008, 19:25.
            "take a look to the sky right before you die, its the last time you will"

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by greyfox View Post
              hopefully the PDF who depend on the DF for a living will be least badly effected ,,
              Well we won't be getting P45s (unless you are facing a medical board) or a paycut.
              sigpic
              Say NO to violence against Women

              Originally posted by hedgehog
              My favourite moment was when the
              Originally posted by hedgehog
              red headed old dear got a smack on her ginger head

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Groundhog View Post
                It means the suspension of RDF recruitment for this year anyway. And more than likely PDF recruitment also.
                Precisely what I said in the other thread
                "Well, stone me! We've had cocaine, bribery and Arsenal scoring two goals at home. But just when you thought there were truly no surprises left in football, Vinnie Jones turns out to be an international player!" (Jimmy Greaves)!"

                Comment


                • #9
                  did nt think ye were, but im sure you can think of a myriad of ways in which a reduced budget will effect those in the pdf be it in pay increases , equipment replacement , recruitment , infrastructure
                  "take a look to the sky right before you die, its the last time you will"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    A guy in my unit was speaking to the S Bde. Manpower office - he was told there will be two more intakes this year and that's it until 2010.
                    "Attack your attic with a Steyr....as seen on the Late Late Show..."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Groundhog View Post
                      Well we won't be getting P45s (unless you are facing a medical board) or a paycut.
                      hopefully you won't be getting paycuts either.
                      Or a reduction in equipment purchases and replacements.
                      courage, endurance, mateship and sacrifice

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Heard tonight that all PDF/RDF recruitment is being frozen for the remainder of the year , the big recruitment and advertising drive for the RDF has been dropped too .
                        Anyone need a spleen ?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by womble View Post
                          Or a reduction in equipment purchases and replacements.
                          Those are inevitable.
                          sigpic
                          Say NO to violence against Women

                          Originally posted by hedgehog
                          My favourite moment was when the
                          Originally posted by hedgehog
                          red headed old dear got a smack on her ginger head

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            No RDF recruitment? Could easily be the death of some units...

                            I think peakers for RDF are a distant dream... Hopefully spending will be prioritised but that would make far too much sense really. Maybe we will get peakers! (but no raingear...) [note heavily bitter tone]
                            Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
                            Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.
                            Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?
                            Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              It could end up with recruitment and promotion freezes at least and such things as grounding of aircraft (which happened the last time) and freezing of purchasing of spares; anything in for overhaul will languish and may never be restored to service.Barrack maintenance will be long-fingered and anything due for retirement will be dumped earlier rather than later.
                              regards
                              GttC

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