THE SEVEN IRISH banks covered by the two guarantee schemes introduced by the government in 2008 and 2009 have so far paid €3.36 billion in fees to the Exchequer, new figures have shown.Figures released by the Department of Finance show that over €750 million has been paid in fees by seven institutions which were covered by the blanket guarantee introduced in September 2008 and which ran for two years.The other €2.6 billion has been paid under a second guarantee, the Eligible Liabilities Guarantee scheme, under which the State also agreed to guarantee new deposits and any newly-issued bonds within a certain period. That scheme remains in place.Around half of the fees accrued from the latter scheme were collected in 2011, when AIB paid fees of €465 million and Bank of Ireland €449 million.Fees from the scheme have slowed slightly since then, with about €515 million paid to the State so far this year – again, with AIB and Bank of Ireland making up the lion’s share at €205 million and €189 million respectively.The Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, the institution formed by the merger of Anglo Irish Bank and Irish Nationwide, has paid a total of €251 million under the ELG scheme.Bank of Ireland and AIB are again the largest contributors under the previous blanket guarantee, having paid €239 and €233 million in the lifetime of that scheme. Anglo paid €188 million, while Irish Nationwide contributed €33 million.EBS Building Society – now a subsidiary of AIB – paid €15.6 million, while Irish Life & Permanent paid a total of €50.2 million. Postbank, the financial services arm of An Post, paid €39,000.Aside from the fees for being covered under the schemes, the banks have also paid a total of €5.35 million to cover the State’s administrative and legal costs.The State has spent a total of €64.1 billion recapitalising the banking sector, including a total of €20.7 billion on the now-defunct IBRC. Some of that amount has been converted into shares in each institution, which could be sold on – possibly to the new Eurozone bailout fund – at a later point.The transactions are largely circuitous, given that the State now almost fully owns each of the institutions covered by the guarantee. The only exception is Bank of Ireland, in which the State owns a 15.1 per cent stake. AIB is 99.8 per cent owned by the taxpayer.The figures were released in response to parliamentary questions from Labour’s Joanna Tuffy.
5. You will see at least 6 children dying of boredomThis will bring back painful memories of your own childhood, sitting under a rack of skirts in Arnotts, or Switzers, or Guineys for what seemed like days.6. You’re going to be disappointed by your visit to the caféLocated on the 5th floor, department store cafés are where paninis and bakewell tarts go to die.You will be so parched by the 69 degree celsius heat in the store though, that you’ll be glad to choke back a €2.79 sparkling water. Source: WordPress7. There’s never a bunch of lost priests in the lingerie sectionNo matter how hard you look.8. You’re never going to get locked in overnightThis was your childhood dream, right? Ours too.You’d be able to eat all the pick n mix: Source: EEPaulJump on all the beds: Source: thinkretailAnd play with all the toys: Source: roboppyShare your department store experiences in the comment section. And if you ever got locked in overnight, you’re our hero…9 reasons shopping is a special brand of horror>20 things you’ll find in an Irish shopping centre>16 reasons to hate doing the ‘big shop’> CLERY’S IS BACK in business today after several months out of action.We welcome back the Dublin institution with open arms, but not all department store experiences are as joyous as a jaunt in under the famous clock.It’s time we came to terms with them…1. They’re lying to usLOOK AT THIS! Source: Imgur2. You’ll never be able to fold the shirts the way they doYou can watch all the videos you want, but you’ll never get there. Source: LOLbrary.com3. Don’t turn rightDepartment stores place all of their best swag to the right of the door, because they count on you to turn right. Source: GifbinWhy not stick it to the man and turn left. I’M SPARTACUS!4. You’ll find the ‘up’ escalator easily enough…… but it’s trickier to find the ‘down’ because THEY NEVER WANT YOU TO LEAVE.
YesNoI don’t knowVoteRead: Lily Allen lays into Robin Thicke and the music industry in new video>Read: Feminist parody of Blurred Lines taken off YouTube…> Poll Results: Yes (685) No (2612) A LINE HAS been drawn at Queens University Belfast with the banning of a hugely popular – and massively controversial – pop song.Blurred Lines, by Robin Thicke, will no longer be allowed to be played throughout the Students Union at Queens, including all bar/club venues, Queen’s Radio, cafés, Clubs and Societies events, external events and within commercial outlets.The ban even extends to when the song is played on external radio stations, with an order that the station must be “changed immediately”.The motion was put forward by Student Officer Equality and Diversity, Caoimhe McNeill. She said during the most recent student council meeting that over 20 Students’ Unions have removed this song from their playlists.She described banning Blurred Lines as “a step in a right direction to make sure SU members feel safe on campus”.One person who spoke against the motion was Eoin Deeney, who said that he thought the premise was flawed and that it is “tantamount to censorship”. He also pointed out that there are “millions of other songs” with such connotations.The lyrics to the song were discussed by the Students’ Union council members. Some said that they thought publicising banning the song would make people think about Robin Thicke’s “message”. McNeill said the issue is not one of censorship.The motion went to a vote and was passed. The Belfast Telegraph notes that 26 were in favour of the motion, while 22 student council members were against.Thicke has been accused of promoting rape culture through the lyrics of the track, but he has denied suggestions that Blurred Lines is offensive or misogynistic.Do you think that Blurred Lines should be banned from students’ unions? I don’t know (2511)
Updated 12.45pmTHE BODY OF a man was found in the Phoenix Park in the early hours of this morning.Gardaí are investigating the circumstances surrounding the discovery and the scene is being preserved.The office of the State Pathologist has been notified and personnel are due to attend the site later this morning.It is understood the deceased suffered burn injuries. He was discovered near the Wellington Monument in a sleeping bag. There was a fire reported in the area but gardaí have not indicated if they believe it was started deliberately or accidentally.An appeal for witnesses has been made with investigators anxious to talk to anybody who may have been in the vicinity of Wellington Road between 12.30am and 1am today. Those who can assist with the probe are asked to contact Cabra garda station on 01 666 7400.
THE BOARD OF Anglo Irish Bank met 33 times in one year as the directors faced a series of problems at the now-defunct bank.The court at the trial of three former senior executives of the bank heard today that the board would usually have met between eight and ten times in one year, but met four or five times alone in the days following the collapse of Bear Sterns investment bank on 17 March 2008.Counsel for the defence described the collapse of the US bank as the “St Patrick’s Day massacre”.Natasha Mercer, who was the company secretary of Anglo in 2008 said that the board was made up of thirteen people: four executive directors who were involved with the day-to-day running of the bank – David Drumm, Willie McAteer, Pat Whelan and Declan Quilligan – and nine non-executive directors who would come to board meetings, including Sean FitzPatrick.Mercer said that she had taken hand-written notes of board meetings and typed them up afterwards. She told the court that she does not have her hand-written notes but may be able to get them for when she gives evidence again.The court also heard details about the collapse of the share price of the bank. Graphs using figures from the Irish Stock Exchange were put up on three large television screens around the court.A witness from the Irish Stock Exchange confirmed that shares in the bank were trading at €10.72 on 2 January 2008 but had fallen down to just €0.17 by 31 December. Between 2007 and 2008, the share price had peaked at €17.53 at the start of June 2007.Counsel for the prosecution Úna Ní Raifeartaigh said there was a “very clear decline” in the share price of Anglo Irish Bank throughout 2008.The share price hovered around €8 and €10 euro for the first three months of the year before dropping to €6.95 on 17 March. It fell below five euro for the first time on 10 July when it dropped to €4.85. The price gradually increased over the following two months before falling again in September. It ended the year at just 17 cent.Counsel for Seán Fitzpatrick Michael O’Higgins SC asked witness Aisling McArdle of the Irish Stock Exchange if the share price could be seen as a barometer of the health of an institution, and she agreed that it could.He asked the witness if she knew anything about CFDs, but she said she didn’t.O’Higgins said investor Warren Buffet had described CFDs as “weapons of mass destruction” in terms of how they can affect the price of shares in an institution.It is the second day of the trial of Seán FitzPatrick of Greystones in Wicklow, Pat Whelan of Coast Road, Malahide in Dublin, and William McAteer of Auburn Villas in Rathmines in Dublin, who have all pleaded not guilty to charges under section 60 of the Companies Act of counts of providing unlawful financial assistance to people – including the so-called Maple 10 – in 2008 to buy shares in the bank.
A 63-YEAR-OLD man has died after the car he was driving left the road, entered a ditch and crashed into a tree in Co. Tipperary this afternoon. It happened on the R687 New Inn to Clonmel Road at approximately 2.45pm. The man was pronounced dead at the scene. His body has been taken to South Tipperary General Hospital in Clonmel, where a post mortem is to be arranged. The passenger in the vehicle, a 35-year-old man, has been taken to the same hospital. His injuries are described as being non-life threatening.A section of the road has been closed as forensic tests are carried out at the scene, and diversions are in place. Investigating Gardaí are appealing for witnesses to contact Cahir Garda Station on 052 7445630, The Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda Station.
As well as the policy directive, O’Sullivan is introducing other actions to ensure “full and effective implementation” of the enforcement provisions set out under Planning Legislation. These include:Two public guides on planning enforcement (published in November)The publication of consolidated versions of the Planning and Development Acts 2000 – 2012 and Planning and Development Regulations 2001 – 2012A commitment to develop a policy statement on planningThe establishment of an Independent Planning Regulator.The directive requires planning authorities to report comprehensively and formally on the enforcement activity they carry out and to provide whatever assistance is necessary in the future to raise public awareness about planning enforcement.Finally, it provides guidance to planning authorities that, in carrying out their enforcement function, they need to prioritise the most significant breaches of the planning code, for example quarrying activities.O’Sullivan said that the statutory footing “will also serve as a clear signal to the public, to planning authorities, and to the European Commission that Ireland is taking its planning enforcement function seriously”.A group will be set up to examine, in conjunction with planning authorities, possible further areas of reform. These may include possible amendments to planning legislation, and the development of a proper enforcement network through which planning authorities can share knowledge, expertise and experience.Read: New regulator ‘will restore confidence in planning system’>http://www.thejournal.ie/planning-regulator-mahon-tribunal-2-899074-May2013/ THOSE WHO BREACH planning laws will face the consequences of their actions, Minister of State Jan O’Sullivan has said today.She made the comment while issuing a policy directive on planning enforcement, following on from the announcement earlier this week that the Government was establishing an Independent Planning Regulator.O’Sullivan, who is the Minister for Housing and Planning, said the directive has three main objectives:To remind planning authorities of their statutory obligations under Part VIII of the Planning and Development Acts 2000-2012To require planning authorities to undertake appropriate monitoring of planning enforcement; andTo direct planning authorities to prioritise large-scale unauthorised development and enforcement cases.Minister O’Sullivan described Ireland’s performance on planning enforcement as having been “patchy” and said “we need to address that”.Those responsible for breaching planning legislation need to know that they will face the consequences of their actions and those that want to see the law upheld need to know that the system has teeth.
GAA CHIEFS ARE waiting for communication from the IRFU as to what GAA stadia they would like to include as part of a potential bid for Ireland to host the 2023 or 2027 Rugby World Cup.The GAA’s Congress in Derry last month carried a motion to allow the use of its grounds for an IRFU bid for the prestigious competition.GAA Director-General Paraic Duffy confirmed yesterday that he spoke to his IRFU counterpart Phillip Browne in the aftermath of that decision.It is envisaged that the IRFU will look for six GAA stadia as part of their bid. Croke Park will be an automatic inclusion with Casement Park and Páirc Uí Chaoimh, who are both set to undergo refurbishment projects over the next few years, also in line.Other venues that may be considered include Fitzgerald Stadium, Gaelic Grounds, Pearse Stadium and Elvery’s McHale Park.Duffy revealed that the ball is now in the court of the IRFU to inform the GAA of what venues they would like to use.“They have looked at the venues themselves,” said Duffy. “They are probably waiting to find out what the exact tendering process is. They have looked at a lot of our venues and they’ll come back and tell us which ones they want to use.“They originally talked about six but I don’t know. I think there will be six anyway. They have to come back to us in due course. I briefed Phillip Browne briefly after Congress. They need to know when the process begins and it could be a year or 18 months before that starts.”Cork hurler Paudie O’Sullivan suffers serious leg injury
IT WAS A week when the Seanad was recalled to discuss the crisis in Gaza.Awful weather hit some parts of the country, and former Fianna Fáil minister Ivor Calley was sentenced.All that, and more, it’s the week in quotes: Source: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland I can’t think of very many positions where one can simply request, on the back of such a devastatingly incisive report, that one can simply request to be moved to somewhere else.Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald wasn’t sure if her former secretary general Brian Purcell will be reassigned to in the civil service, following a damning report by an independent review group which found the department had a “closed, secretive and silo driven culture”. Source: Youtube ScreengrabWell, I’d prefer if the United Nations started shelling Israel.A Sinn Féin councillor, John Hearne, said he believed the United Nations should start shelling Israel in order to persuade its government to return to the talks table. Source: Sam Boal/Photocall IrelandThe tat is a bit smaller than the tit.Senator David Norris’ response to Fine Gael’s Paul Coghlan calling the Israel-Gaza conflict “tit-for-tat”. Source: Channel 4 News/YouTubeWhat I never knew, is what I know that, which is that those people who live in Gaza are mainly the unbelievably young.Jon Snow spoke of the ‘images etched’ in his mind after his visit to Gaza. Source: Sam Boal/Photocall IrelandThis conduct is never acceptable, it is never acceptable. People who indulge in this conduct should be dealt with by the law.Fianna Fail’s Willie O’Dea said he can’t imagine that Ivor Calley, jailed earlier this week, will ever be readmitted to the party. Source: Sam Boal/Photocall IrelandWe want to live in a country that treats everyone with respect… the way we treat asylum seekers and people in the system says a lot about us as a country.Junior Minister Aodhán Ó Ríordáin spoke of the need to reform Ireland’s system of direct provision. Source: Laura Hutton/Photocall IrelandI hate missing these things, but it’s a right pain in the bum, and it’s an awful day for it.One Senator was willing to come back to Dublin for the recall, but wasn’t too happy with the date. Source: Sam Boal/Photocall IrelandShe has shown enormous courage in staying the course of the criminal justice system. She had to wait 4 years for this day. She had to endure a full court case as Anthony Lyons pleaded not guilty and mounted a defence for the crime he committed against herEllen O’Malley-Dunlop, Chief Executive of the DRCC, said the re-sentencing of Anthony Lyons (pictured) for a 2010 sexual assault is a “significant societal marker”, and praised the bravery of the victim.
IT HAS A dedicated fanbase of readers in Waterford, Kilkenny, Wexford and Kildare, and a 43-year history of brightening up bookshelves.But now The Book Centre has taken the leap online – and wants to provide a personal experience to buyers.The ownersThe shop was opened by Sean Ryan and his wife Maureen, and Denis and Alice Doolin on Michael Street in Waterford City in 1971.The Ryan family has been in business in Waterford since 1749 in milling and in polish manufacturing. Meanwhile, Sean’s father entered the retail business in 1921.Before long they had outgrown the 1,000 square foot store and bought the old art-deco Savoy Cinema in the city centre.This was turned into a premises with a café and was soon joined by a three-storey Wexford location in 1973. This was followed by a Kilkenny Book Centre in 1974.Its most recent store opening was in Naas in 2005, under the brand Barker & Jones.Loyal clientele Source: Patrick BrowneMaeve Ryan, Managing Director of The Book Centre, said this is a new direction for the company “but it is something we have been planning and working on for sometime”.They are conscious of the trend towards e-books, but theirs customer also like getting to spend time browsing books in the store. Because of that, they don’t want the website to be faceless.The same staff that work in the store will be dealing with the online customers, said Maeve. “We are hoping to reach all of Ireland,” she said. “We pride ourselves on our customer service.”Sean Ryan said that it has always been their business philosophy to “concentrate on being the very best in our industry in our store locations”.“We have never wished to have lots and lots of shops, we have always concentrated on opening a store in a new location,” he said.They want to have a loyal clientele, a broad array of products and excellent customer service. This has served us well over the years and we believe that now is the right time for us to enter the online market and again do this really well.The site is available at thebookcentre.ie. Read: 17 Irish independent bookshops you must visit before you die>