Howlin sets out plans for public sector reform

The Minister for Public Expenditure & Reform Brendan Howlin has announced the latest public service reform proposals.

Public service reform has been a challenging cornerstone of the coalition’s political agenda at a time when money has been scarce and demand for services has risen dramatically.

The next tranche of reforms is expected to maintain the focus on driving cost down, including through further staff reductions, while improving the service to citizens.

It pledges to complete the controversial rationalisation of State agencies – the so-called quango cull – by this September.

There will be further amalgamation of functions such as payroll and pensions in shared services initiatives.

The reform document also flags further outsourcing, including for debt management and medical assessments.

It is hoped better procurement practices could deliver savings of €500m over three years.

Improved property management should also secure savings.