26 April 2016
By Tom Collins
Anti Austerity Alliance TD for Cork North Central Mick Barry announced this morning that he will not take one penny from the 29,000 euro gratuity he is set to receive from Cork City Council and that he will instead use the money to establish a “solidarity fund” for community causes, campaigns and strike funds.
Mick Barry was elected to Dail Eireann in February and his election brought to an end his 12-year stint on Cork City Council. However, as a former councillor over the age of 50 with 12 years service he was entitled to a gratuity which turns out to be 28,895.88 euro after tax.
However, much like Sinn Fein’s arrangement where elected representatives only receive a basic wage it should be noted that Deputy Barry will actually draw down the payment, meaning it will cost the taxpayer. He will then redistribute the monies himself. Perhaps consideration could have been given to not drawing down the funds?
Deputy Barry said this morning: “I don’t think councillors who go on to become TDs should benefit from gratuities. I will not take a penny of this money for myself. Instead, I will use this money to establish a fund to assist community causes, campaigns and strike funds.”
Cllr Barry said that he had not received the gratuity yet and that he would finalise plans for how the “solidarity fund” would work in the month of May.