The Government has decided to cut the pay of ministers by 10%, Taoiseach Micheal Martin has said.
The cut will apply from Mr Martin down to the ministers of state, he said.
“The Government today has taken a decision, which was in process, to give back 10% of of its salaries back to the state as and from the commencement of Government,” he said.
“So it is a 10% cut from the Taoiseach right down through the Government to ministers of state.”
He said ministers have agreed to the 10% pay cut, and it will be backdated to their appointment which took place at the beginning of July.
It comes amid controversy over the decision by the Government to give an additional 16,000 euro to “super junior” ministers who sit at Cabinet.
Mr Martin said the issue around the pay rise “could have been handled better collectively by the Government”.
He said: “Two were already in receipt of a particular rate and the third one wasn’t. There was a view that it should have been regularised.”
Taoiseach MicheÃ¡l Martin has said a decision was made at cabinet today for Ministers to take a 10% pay cut. pic.twitter.com/g21lm7sp2B— Ãine McMahon (@AineMcMahon) July 27, 2020
“So that is a 10% cut in the rate of pay from Taoiseach right down to the entire Government and ministers of state as well. That has been formalised today by the Cabinet.”
Higher Education Minister Simon Harris said the decision to grant the additional 16,000 euro to “super junior” ministers was “an effort to fix an anomaly”.
He acknowledged, however, that the pay increase “stuck in the craw” of people during what was “a very difficult time in our country”.
“There was an effort to fix an anomaly, an anomaly that Fine Gael wasn’t in a position to fix before where you had a female member of the Cabinet, a ‘super-junior minister’ at Cabinet being paid less than her male counterparts and that there was obviously an anomaly in that regard. So I do think that’s important,” he said.