Croke Park Agreement Annual Report
The Croke Park Agreement Implementation Body have published their second annual report today (13/06/2012). The report sets out a review of the second year of the agreement with public service unions and the government. The report says that at total of €650million worth of savings came from the public pay bill, while a total of €370million worth of savings were achieved in non-pay and administrative efficiencies
The Chair of the implementation body, PJ Fitzpatrick said "The Agreement was designed to enable the Government to reduce pay bill costs and ensure that services be maintained at the same time. So far the Agreement has succeeded in doing so in that very significant pay bill savings have been achieved as well as major non-pay savings".
The 2014 target of a reduction of 25,000 public sector employees has been surpassed, while it is expected that the reduction of 37,000 by 2015 will be met.
The report indicates that the public sector has seen a drop in staffing levels but have been able to maintain services during an era of increased population and increased productivity for the public sector.
The body believe that the utilisation of redeployment, reconfiguration, flexibility and reforms have allowed for public bodies to maintain and increase their productivity.
Labour's Gerald Nash, TD, welcomed the report pointing to the savings for the tax payer and the reduction in the numbers in the public service. He believes the report shows that the approach by the government has been vindicated.
Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, also welcomed the report. He pointed to the examples of co-operation with in the public service including new Garda and Health care roster arrangements and the redeployment of staff between state agencies.
The minister said "I welcome the findings of the Implementation Body that almost €900 million of sustainable pay and non-pay savings have been successfully delivered in the second year of the Croke Park Agreement. This means the Agreement has achieved almost €1.5 billion in pay and on pay savings in its first two years. "
SIPTU, Services Industrial Professional and Technical Union, has said that the report confirms the importance of the agreement. Patricia King, SIPTU vice-president said that the implementation of the the agreement had come with industrial peace and said without this agreement such reforms could not have taken place. She took time to point out the losses of income that SIPTU members have seen and the increased work load due to the moratorium on recruitment in the public service. She concluded by saying "The big challenge for the next two years of the Agreement is the accelerated implementation of critical reform and change and to ensure that the burden of such transformation is shared across all levels of the public service."
Key points of the report (full report here): -
- Reduction in public service staff of 28,000 or 8.8%
- Reduction in the public pay bill of 17.7% since 2009 to €14.4billion
- Pay bill savings of €650million between quarter 1 of 2011 and 2012. Due to staffing reductions.
- Administrative (or Non-pay) related savings have been calculated to save the country €370 in the year reported.