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Longford councillors set for €450k golden handshake

The offices of Longford County Council. Photo: Michelle Ghee. www.gphotos.ie

The offices of Longford County Council. Photo: Michelle Ghee. www.gphotos.ie

 

The taxpayer is to shell out almost €450,000 to cover the cost of severance payments to councillors who either retired or lost their seats at last month’s local elections.

Figures released to longfordleader.ie by Longford County Council show 18 town and county councillors stand to share a windfall of €447,194 between them.

It also comes after the Leader revealed earlier this month that Longford Co Council had set aside up to €500,000 in a bid to cover anticipated severance costs.

Five elected representatives who stood down from public office in the lead up to the May 23 elections have already received payments amounting to €207,000.

They include Larry Bannon (€33,314), Denis Glennon (€49,508), Victor Kiernan (€53,437) along with the two highest earners, Barney Steele and Gerry Brady (€57,722 each).

Over €188,000 is expected to be handed out to six other locally elected representatives who were unsuccessful in retaining their seats three weeks ago.

Sean Farrell and Frank Kilbride are both in line to collect €47,723 for their 15 years of service at local authority level.

Maura Kilbride Harkin, who lost her county council seat in 2009 and failed in her bid for re-election this time around, is entitled to receive €43,373.

Defeated dual mandate holder Paul Connell is set to secure €24,530 in severance monies while Tom Victory will pocket €16,590 for his five year term on Longford Co Council.

Two retirees from Longford Town Council, namely Brendan Gilmore and Denis Hughes have received severance deals of €8,320 and €1,742, respectively.

Former Longford Town Councillor, James Keogh, meanwhile, looks set to receive payments totalling €8,320.

In Granard, the figure rises to €41,731. Fintan Flood received the highest sum for his years of service at local authority level, netting €16,578. Independent retiree, Terry McGovern secured around €9,000 less, taking home €7,471. The remaining €17,500 was divided between Tommy Stokes (€6,579), Eddie Kelly (€6,579) and Sean Howard (€4,524).

Though currently standing at €447,000 the total figure of gratuity payments will rise as a number of councillors won’t receive their payments until they have reached the age of 50.

These include payments to former Longford town councillors, Tony Flaherty and Michael Connellan as well as ex- Granard representatives John Maguire and Ann Farrelly.

 

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