From top: Lynda McQuaid; Fine Gael Minister for Education and Skills Richard Bruton and Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor
Niall O’Connor, in the Irish Independent, reports:
“Fine Gael junior minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor lobbied the Department of Public Expenditure in order to secure a bump up of almost €13,000 in the salary of her new press adviser, the Irish Independent has learned.
New correspondence reveals how an official for Ms Mitchell O’Connor argued that the salary offered to former TV3 boss Lynda McQuaid was too low and should be increased in line with her former earnings at Ballymount.
The original salary offered to Ms McQuaid was just under €82,000 – the first point of the principal officer scale which is paid to the vast majority of Government press advisers.
But after submitting documentation from her accountant, a department official asked Paschal Donohoe’s department to increase the salary to €94,521.
This equates to the fifth point of the principal officer scale, and brings Ms McQuaid’s salary in line with that of Ms Mitchell O’Connor’s other special adviser, Roy Dooney.