Reveal of Government special adviser salaries show eight on over €100k

Reveal Of Government Special Adviser Salaries Show Eight On Over €100K
The media and policy advisers have a combined yearly earning topping €2 million.
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By Digital Desk Staff

The Government has said it will pay a €2 million yearly package to cover the salaries of 23 special advisers.

Eight of the special advisers to ministers and junior ministers are receiving salaries of more than €100,000 a year, the Irish Examiner reports.


The media and policy advisers, appointed by 13 ministers and ministers of state, earn between €67,659 and €101,114 with a combined yearly earning topping €2 million.

The salaries exclude pension and other entitlements.

The eight advisers who earn a €101,114 salary include former journalists Chris Donoghue, Paul Melia and Susan Mitchell.

Both advisers to Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe, Deborah Sweeney and Ed Brophy, are also paid the €101,114 salary.


Pauric McPhilips, adviser to Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys; Kevin Barrett, adviser to Minister for Public Expenditure Michael McGrath; and Paul Kenny, adviser to Minister for the Environment Eamon Ryan, each also receive the top salary.

Minister Ryan’s three advisers are all paid between €87,000 and €101,114.

Adviser to Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney, former Cork city councillor Laura McGonigle, receives a salary of €94,487.

Taoiseach's team

The figures do not include the salaries of the Government press secretary, Paul Clarkson, who is understood to be on a salary of about €140,000. The salaries of two deputy Government press secretaries are also not included.


Speaking in the Dáil this week, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the requirement for specialist policy input and advice was a matter for each individual minister to consider.

He added regard must be given to the area of responsibility and the support in place in the relevant departments.

Mr Martin said his chief of staff is on the deputy secretary salary level of €174,688, while his deputy chief of staff in on the assistant secretary level of between €135,299 and €154,775.

"Where there are parties with different perspectives in Government, and this is a three-party Government, there is a need to make sure that the policy programme, as per the Programme for Government, and the perspectives of parties are brought through,” he said.

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