Tipp TD Seamus Healy had the biggest print run in Dail Eireann with 72,000 calendars for 2018

Noel Dundon

Reporter:

Noel Dundon

Email:

nd@tipperarystar.ie

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Deputy Seamus Healy (standing) has printed 72,000 calendars for constituents.

110,500 calendars printed for Tipp between Deputy Healy and Deputy Cahill  for a population of 158,000 people. 

110,500 calendars have been printed for the households of Tipperary by two TD's, one of whom tops the poll when it comes to printing in Dail Eireann.

For the second year running, Independant Deputy Seamus Healy has printed the most of any TD in the country  -72,500 calendars at a cost of over €2,000, according to documents released by the Oireachtas. This means that he is printing approximately 10 calendars per first preference vote received in the last General Election when he pulled 7,452 votes.


And his constituency colleague, Fianna Fáil TD Jackie Cahill, ran up a bill of €1,000 after printing 38,000 calendars for his constituents. The Fianna Fail Deputy received 7414 first preference votes in the General Election and has printed approximately five calendars per vote received.

Deputy Jackie Cahill

However, what is most baffling is the relatively low cost of the printing - the production costs of 72,000 calendars would be far more than €2,000 to members of the public getting the job done with private printing companies. So, it begs the question, is using the Dail printing press, value for money, or a waste of money?

Mr Healy said the calendars are not Christmas material and that they will be delivered to constituents in January.
He maintains that he considers the use of the Dáil printing press to produce personal Christmas cards to be a waste of public money and insists that he has not done this.

In a statement, Mr Healy said the calendars are not Christmas material and that they will be delivered to constituents in January.
“The calendars contain details of the 12 representation clinics I hold each week in all parts of my Tipperary constituency and my personal and office contact details. The calendars contain information required by citizens in order to enable me to fully represent them. The provision of public information as to my availability to give advice and to make representations on behalf of constituents is part of my duties as a Dáil Deputy,” Mr Healy said.
 
“In addition, the calendars also provide contact details for local hospitals, health centres, social welfare services, emergency services, Garda services etc. I provide this information to my constituents so they can quickly access the services to which they are entitled, sometimes in emergency situations.
"There is no reference to Christmas or the New Year on the calendars. They are in no way a replacement or substitute for Christmas cards. To confuse my calendars with Christmas cards is misleading. The calendars will be delivered in January 2018 and not at Christmas.

"I consider the use of the Dáil printing press to produce personal Christmas cards to be a waste of public money. I have not done this. This year, as I do every year, I am sending a number of Christmas cards in aid of the Irish Hospice foundation on behalf of myself and my family. These have not been produced on the Dáil printing press. These Christmas cards are a personal matter and are not subsidised by the taxpayer in any way, nor should they be.”