Adoption board members
attend only fraction of meetings in 5-year period
By Conall Ó Fátharta
Irish Examiner, Monday,
January 24, 2011
SOME Adoption Board
members attended just a fraction of board meetings between 2005 and
2009, a period in which the organisation was embroiled in high-profile
Figures released to the
Irish Examiner show two appointees to the previous board with links to
Fianna Fáil, Fachtna Whittle and Tony Lynam-Loane, attended the least
number of board meetings in the five-year period.
Two other members of the eight member board, Dr Valerie O’Brien and
Orlaith Traynor, attended fewer than 65% of the meetings held in this
Out of 207 meetings held by the board between 2005 and 2009, Mr Whittle
attended 70, or just 33% of all meetings. Mr Whittle’s lowest level of
attendance came in 2005 when he was present at just seven of the 45
meetings held by the board that year, and in 2006 when he attended six
out of the 41 meetings held that year. He claimed no expenses during
Mr Whittle is principal solicitor with Haughton McCarroll solicitors and
is a former Fianna Fáil councillor on Wicklow County Council and
running mate of Fianna Fáil Minister of State for European Affairs Dick
Mr Whittle previously featured in an RTÉ Prime Time planning exposé.
In 2005, Wicklow County Council’s ethics committee found he had acted
unwisely but not in breach of the ethics legislation. However, this
decision was challenged in the High Court by the Green Party’s Deirdre
The next poorest attendance record was held by Tony Lynam-Loane, who
made it to just 86 out of 207 meetings between 2005 and 2009. Between
2007 and 2009, he attended just 17 meetings out of the 121 held —
giving him an attendance record of just 14%.
In 2008, he was present at just two of the 43 meetings held that year.
Mr Lynam-Loane is an accountant and was appointed to the Adoption Board
in 2004. Between 2005 and 2009, he claimed just more than €3,000 in
The most expenses claimed by a single member of the board between 2005
and 2010 was €71,069 by Assumpta Hogan.
A statement from the Adoption Authority said expense claims would
largely be made "for domestic travel to/from meetings and for any
domestic subsistence where applicable".
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