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Gardai in Mayo’s overtime boost over Shell

February 22, 2009

Five officers earned €325,111 in payments as the cost of policing protest against gas pipeline proved expensive for force

Five gardai in Co Mayo earned €325,141 in overtime payments last year, as the cost of policing Shell’s gas pipeline put a serious strain on the force’s budget.

One Mayo officer earned €80,990 in overtime in 2008, more than any other garda in the country. His overtime payment was equivalent to three salaries for new recruits, and nearly twice that of an experienced officer.

Garda pay starts at €27,098 but after 17 years of service it is capped at €47,507. Most rank and file garda can boost their earnings by working overtime and are compensated for working unsociable hours. They get double time for working on Sundays and public holidays and are paid €31.44 per hour for overtime on weekdays.

The total garda overtime bill for 2008 was €113m, figures released through Freedom of Information legislation reveal. The bill was more than €11m higher than the €102m budget allocated by the Department of Justice.

The 20 highest overtime claimants earned €1.1m between them last year. Of the top five overtime earners, three were based in Mayo and two were in Dublin. The second-highest overtime claimant, a garda from Dublin, earned €73,503. The third and fourth-highest earners, both from Mayo, earned €70,890 and €68,537 respectively. Five of the top 20 earners were based in Co Mayo.

The garda overtime bill in Co Mayo has risen sharply

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