CRC chief resigns following top-up controversy

//CRC chief resigns following top-up controversy

CRC chief resigns following top-up controversy

Central Remedial Clinic Chief Executive Brian Conlon has resigned following the controversy over top-up payments at the organisation.

Mr Conlon took up the post in July of this year, having previously been CEO of the Mater Hospital.

In a statement his afternoon, Mr Conlon said he was away on leave when the controversy started.

“Within 24 hours of returning to Ireland I tendered my resignation with immediate effect,” he said.

“I believe that it is in the best interests of the Central Remedial Clinic’s clients and staff that the new chief executive should not have any association with legacy matters at the CRC.”

Mr Conlon said his salary was within the guidelines provided by the HSE.

He said he hopes the CRC can “start afresh with a clean slate” following his resignation.

“I believe that there should be full transparency within the charitable sector with regard to how all funds raised, both private and public, are spent and that all executive remuneration should be within HSE guidelines,” he said.

Senior CRC staff are due to appear before the Public Accounts Committee later this week to answer questions on the controversy.

In November, the CRC confirmed that some of the money donated by the public was being used to top up the salaries of some of its staff.

The funds were raised by a separate company called Friends and Supporters of the Central Remedial Clinic.

The CRC admitted that the additional salary amounts were over the Department of Health’s consolidated pay scales.

In a statement this afternoon, the Board of the CRC confirmed it had accepted Mr Conlon’s resignation with immediate effect.

Chairman Jim Nugent has been appointed interim-CEO.

Joan Hurley will take over the day-to-day management of the clinic and will coordinate the senior management team as Operations Director.

The board thanked Mr Conlon for his support and commitment to the CRC.

Calls for external selection of next CEO

Meanwhile, Independent TD Shane Ross has said there may be more resignations to come after Mr Conlon’s decision to step down.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Today with Sean O’Rourke, Mr Ross said the appointment of any successor should not be supervised by the current board. Mr Ross said it should be advertised and selected externally.

He said he hoped that by the time a successor is appointed the members of the board would have stepped down.

Mr Ross said anybody who was involved in the appointment of Mr Conlon, or in authorising top-ups for the previous chief executive, Paul Kiely, should not be involved in any way in the new appointment.

He said the Health Service Executive may have to take a hands-on role in the appointment of a successor to Mr Conlon.

The Public Accounts Committee has requested that the relevant board members from the CRC along with its former CEO’s Mr Conlon and Mr Kiely appear before it on Wednesday.

Representatives of the HSE will also attend the meeting.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny said he expects Mr Conlon to appear before the committee as scheduled.  

Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald called on Minister for Health James Reilly to intervene in the controversy.

Speaking on RTÉ’s News at One, Ms McDonald, who is a member of the PAC, said she hopes Mr Conlon will attend the PAC meeting on Wednesday, despite his resignation.

The HSE said the resignation was a matter for the CRC.

A spokesperson said the executive remains in discussions with ‘Section 38’ voluntary agencies in order to ascertain degrees of compliance with public sector pay policy.

He said the HSE continues to receive documentary proof of compliance.

The spokesman said the Director General of the HSE has commenced meetings with the chairpersons of voluntary agencies.

He said that process will continue over the next number of months.


RTÉ News – News Headlines

By | 2013-12-09T18:28:53+00:00 December 9th, 2013|Headlines|0 Comments