Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Public Accounts Committee

2016 Annual Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General and Appropriation Accounts
Vote 1 - President's Establishment

10:00 am

Mr. Martin Fraser:

The Government typically knows in advance the number of State or official visits the President might make, but it can change during the year. Like every other office and Vote, there is an estimate of the cost for the year which is published in the Estimates. As the Chairman pointed out, it is reviewed by the relevant committee of the House. The Estimate is voted through and it is then for the Office of the President to expend the money granted to it. It is very clear from the appropriation account - some things are self-evident - that it does it in conjunction with the OPW for the reasons I have outlined; An Garda Síochána in respect of security; the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, mainly in respect of foreign travel; and the Department of Defence because there are five Defence Forces personnel stationed in Áras an Uachtaráin.