Doherty challenges fellow TDs to publish accounts

Sinn Fein’s Pearse Doherty has challenged his fellow TDs in Donegal to follow his lead and publish their accounts.

Sinn Fein’s Pearse Doherty has challenged his fellow TDs in Donegal to follow his lead and publish their accounts.

The Donegal South West TD said he previously gave a commitment to publish the amount of money that he receives from the Oireachtas. Yesterday, he lived up to that pledge by posting his accounts for 2011.

“It is my belief that all TDs and Senators should be open with the public as to how much money we receive from the state and for what,” he said.

“From time to time headline figures appear in the media after the media are forced to go through a lengthy and not cost-free, freedom of information process. Why should the media or any citizen be forced to do this, what have TDs and other Oireachtas members got to hide?

“I am glad that Pádraig Mac Lochlainn is in an advanced stage of preparing his accounts for publication and I challenge all Donegal TDs to follow my lead and publish their accounts.”

Deputy Doherty’s Oireachtas income for the period January to June 2011 (including travel and accomodation) totalled 39,753.61 euro. For the period July to December ‘11, the figure is 41,617.50 euro. For the 12 months, the figure is over 81,300 euro. Deputy Doherty points out that the accounts also show that he doesn’t personally keep all of the wages and expenses that are paid to him. For the period Jan-June, ‘Pearse wages’ total 14,820 and for July-Dec the figure is 14,250 euro.

“Sinn Fein policy states that our elected representatives will only take home the average industrial wage. So therefore I receive a payment from this account equivalent to the net average industrial wage,” he said.

The accounts also detail the vouchable payments that the TD received and the areas where they were spent. Details of a once off grant (7,915.90 euro) that he availed of to set up two constituency offices are also outlined. “This is fully vouched and requires you to produce invoices and receipts prior to payment,” he said.