Taoiseach's diary April 1998 to December 1999

I had reason to FOI the Taoiseach’s diary for the period between the FOI Act coming into effect (April 19th 1998) and December 1998 recently. It’s now up in case someone else has use for it too. It has been OCR’d – to search press ctrl+F and enter your term, then hit return.

Redactions marked ‘A’ are so because the department believes them to be “personal information” as defined in Section 28 of the FOI act. Entries marked ‘B’ relate to the Taoiseach’s private papers as a member of the Oireachtas. Regards ‘B’ redactions – the cover letter from the FOI officer states “Section 46 of the Act states, inter alia, that the Act does not apply to records relating to any of the private papers of a member of the Oireachtas and as such I consider that the Act does not apply to these entries.”


News stories from around that period include:

The OECD warning our economy may be overheating

“Overheating is the chief risk facing the Irish economy in the run-up to Economic and Monetary Union, the OECD warned in its latest economic outlook. It said signs of overheating were already evident, such as labour shortages in a number of skilled trades and a boom in housing and other asset prices.”

The Garda Commissioner appointing a team to investigate the tapping of the phones of George Lee and Charlie Bird

A decision being made on whether on not members of the public should charged for making an FOI request

The Government debating the merits of recommendations made in The Bacon Report

Local authorities in the greater Dublin area will be required by statute to ensure that their development plans comply with strategic guidelines for the region, according to the Minister for the Environment

John O’Donoghue, then minister for justice, denying he was attempting to shield holders of Ansbacher accounts

An angry Minister for Justice, Mr O’Donoghue, said he gravely resented any suggestion that the Government was in some way trying to shield any Ansbacher account holder. This was false and malicious.

The Minister was reacting to a claim by Mr John Connor (FG) that he intended to “hold in check at all costs” the powers of the Moriarty Tribunal in relation to the accounts.

Cabinet postponing setting up the Standards in Public Office Commission

Mary Banotti appearing before the Old Bailey

and lastly, Pee Flynn.

…though there may be nothing relevant in the document to any of the above.

Footnote: I’m sure someone will note that Bertie met the head of “The Ancient Order of Hibernians” on March 5th 1999. If ever there was a reason to polish up those tin-foil hats, lads… that is surely a secret society.

Seriously though, Bertie sure could open stuff.

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