The Garda Representative Association has said that talks with Department of Justice officials aimed at defusing a row over pay, conditions and the Lansdowne Road Agreement have broken down.

The GRA and the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors have rejected the Lansdowne Road public sector pay agreement, which is due to come into effect on 1 July when the Haddington Road Agreement expires.

Under the HRA, gardaí were obliged to do an extra 30 unpaid hours per year until the end of December 2015.

In the interim, a major review of garda pay, conditions and industrial relations issues - including the lack of full rights for the Garda associations to negotiate and to strike - was to have been concluded by June 2014. 

However, the review never reached completion, and the chair of the Review Group - former Labour Court Deputy Chair Ray McGee - resigned recently.

Voicing significant frustration, the Garda associations ceased doing the additional 30 hours in January, which has resulted in a significant increase in the Garda overtime bill.

They stress that this did not constitute a breach of the HRA, as they were only ever liable to do the additional hours until last December.

It is understood that today's separate meetings at the Department of Justice with the GRA and the AGSI were intended to establish how progress can be made in resolving the issues.

Unions like the GRA and AGSI, which are deemed to have repudiated the LRA, are at risk of having penalties imposed on their members from 1 July under financial emergency (FEMPI) legislation - including non-restoration of pay or allowances, an increment freeze, and the loss of protection from compulsory redundancy.

GRA sources said that at today's meeting, they had sought what they called finalisation of the HRA issues - including completion of the review - before FEMPI emergency legislation penalties would be imposed.

However, the sources said Garda management, the Department of Justice and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform were insisting on imposing the Lansdowne Road Agreement - including the disputed unpaid hours - from 1 July despite the fact that the terms of the HRA had not been completed.

No further meeting has been scheduled.

AGSI General Secretary John Jacob said that the two sides had discussed the issues and will consider documents overnight and will reconvene tomorrow.

The Department of Justice said it would not be commenting at this point as this is an ongoing process over the next couple of weeks.

ASTI members face similar penalties

Teachers belonging to the Association of Secondary Teachers of Ireland are facing similar penalties from July as they have voted to cease doing their 33 additional "Croke Park" hours.

The ASTI Standing Committee will meet on Monday and Tuesday of next week to discuss the outcome of that ballot and to decide whether to issue a formal directive to secondary teachers to stop working the hours.

Teachers have already been warned that on top of losing out elements like pay restoration and increments, they will forfeit restoration of supervision and substitution payments worth €1,600 a year.

Asked when FEMPI provisions would be imposed on unions rejecting the Lansdowne Road Agreement, the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform said it was in "close discussion" with the relevant parent departments in respect of the implementation  of the FEMPI measures as they may affect any union which is found to be in breach of the Public Service Stability Agreement 2013-2018.