Dáil Éireann - Volume 682 - 14 May, 2009
Written Answers. - Tribunals of Inquiry.
Deputy Joe Costello Deputy Joe Costello
Deputy Joe Costello asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the number of tribunals that are sitting; the date that each was established; the cost to the Exchequer of the legal representation of each tribunal to date; the number of lawyers that are employed by the State on tribunal work; if there is a daily rate paid to these lawyers; the rate of same; if some lawyers are employed on a retainer and not actually participating in the tribunal; if they are paid a daily rate; if so, the rate; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19768/09]
Deputy Dermot Ahern Deputy Dermot Ahern
Deputy Dermot Ahern: There is currently one sitting Tribunal of Inquiry which comes under the aegis of my Department. The Smithwick Tribunal was established pursuant to the Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence) Acts 1921-2002, to enquire into suggestions that members of the Garda Síochána or other employees of the State colluded in the fatal shootings of RUC Chief Superintendent Harry Breen and RUC Superintendent Bob Buchanan in 1989. The Tribunal was established by the Oireachtas in May 2005 arising from the Weston Park Agreement between the Irish and British Governments in 2001. The Tribunal is chaired by Judge Peter Smithwick.
The Tribunal’s legal team comprises two Senior Counsel, one Junior Counsel and one Research Counsel. The Senior and Junior Counsel are paid at daily rates in accordance with the Government Decision of December 2004. Following the recent application of an 8 per cent reduction, these daily rates (exclusive of VAT) are €927.36 for a Senior Counsel, €618.24 for a Junior Counsel and €231.84 for a Research Counsel. The total in fees for the Tribunal’s legal team to date is €2.147 million. The Tribunal’s solicitor is on secondment from the Office of the Chief State Solicitor and is paid in accordance with the Principal Solicitor salary scale.
Dáil Éireann 682 Written Answers. Tribunals of Inquiry.