Minister refused to discuss way of cutting €500m rescue contract - National News, Frontpage - Independent.ie
Is it beneath Mr Dempsey to save this state some cash?TRANSPORT Minister Noel Dempsey refused to meet a former head of the Air Corps to discuss a cheaper alternative to a 500m national maritime search and rescue contract with a private outfit.
Confidential correspondence seen by the Irish Independent reveals Brigadier General John O'Brien advised Mr Dempsey that the Air Corps could provide the same service for "significantly less" than the Government planned to pay a Canadian firm, CHC Helicopter.
Brig Gen O'Brien estimates tens of millions of euro could have been saved if all or part of the contract had gone to the Air Corps.
His intervention came in May, two months before the award of the contract to CHC would eventually be announced.
However, Mr Dempsey refused to discuss the proposal with Brig Gen O'Brien and the Air Corps was never asked to tender for the contract.
"Let them have cake!"