Donegal County Councillor, David Alcorn has made it abundantly clear that he will face any questions that have been raised by an anonymous letter posted to state and media authorities this week. The Fianna Fail representative has become the fifth councillor to have come under scrutiny due to expense claims in recent years.
The letter, which is dated November 5, claims to be from “a concerned tax-payer of the Republic of Ireland” and asks the Minister of State, Dinny McGinley T.D with responsibility for the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, to have the documentation analysed and verified immediately.
“This documentation was obtained under the Freedom of Information requests to both Udaras na Gaeltachta and Donegal County Council. The documents provided are copies of the expense sheets completed by Councillor Alcorn in his own handwriting to both organisations,” it states.
The letter which was provided to this newspaper by Raidio na Gaeltachta producer, Colm O’Dulachain, urges the Minister to delay the appointment of Cllr. Alcorn to Udaras na Gaeltachta until the matter is fully investigated.
The documentation was sent to The Ethics Registrar, C/o Padraig O’Conghaile, cinnteoir, Udaras na Gaeltachta and Liam Ward, the Acting Ethics Registrar with Donegal County Council.
Yesterday evening, Cllr. Alcorn released a statement saying that he had been made aware by members of the media that they had received expense claims regarding claims submitted by him to Donegal County Council and Udaras na Gaeltachta for the years 2006, 2008 and 2009.
“I have not received copies of the details of these expenses claims. However, I have been contacted by Udaras na Gaeltachta regarding the matter and they have forwarded copies to me today. I have also received a phone call from Donegal County Council today, Wednesday November 7, informing me that they are posting a copy of correspondence received by Donegal County Council this evening to me. As these claims go back a number of years, it will take me some time to examine them in detail.”
He said that he wanted to make it abundantly clear that he will co-operate fully with Donegal Co. Council and Udaras na Gaeltachta in any queries they may have. He said he would not make any further statement until these matters are resolved.