Thursday, 11 July 2019
Department of Health
Commissions of Investigation
688. To ask the Minister for Health the reason the Farrelly commission is not considering loss of wages as eligible for payment as per the Commission of Investigation Act 2004 regarding key witnesses that have contributed their time and resources to the commission; and the remedy open to persons to achieve a more equitable or different outcome. [31461/19]
The Commission of Investigation (Certain matters relative to a disability service in the South East and related matters) was established by the Government under the Commissions of Investigation Act 2004 (No. 23 of 2004) to investigate the role of relevant public authorities in relation to the care of "Grace" (pseudonym) and other individuals in a former foster home in the South East.
The Commission's Sole Member is Marjorie Farrelly, S.C.
The Commission is independent in undertaking its functions. I am not in a position to comment on its ongoing work. This includes determinations on applications for the recovery of costs.
Sections 23 and 24 of the Commissions of Investigation Act 2004 provide for guidelines concerning the recovery of legal costs necessarily incurred by witnesses (section 23) and requests for the recovery of legal costs necessarily incurred and certain other expenses (section 24). These guidelines and the payment of witnesses' expenses and other costs are included within the Farrelly Commission's rules and procedures (section 13 to 17 and appendix 2). Section 15 of the Act provides for the power of the Commission to establish or adopt rules and procedures. The Commission is obliged to provide copies of its rules and procedures to persons likely to be affected by them.