Eirgrid’s CEO has responded to reports that staff are getting bonuses of up to 15% and said the average performance-related payment has been decreasing.

Fintan Slye was referring to a report in The Sunday Business Post, which said network operators are getting such bonuses while consumers and businesses face increasing electricity charges over the next five years.

Speaking on Morning Ireland the head of the State’s electricity network operator said they had contractual commitments and “a rigorous management system”.

"The average performance related payment in recent years was just over 10% and I don't expect that to rise," he said. 

"We are determined to manage that effectively. The regulator has set our overall allowance and what we do is manage that."  

Over 400 people work for Eirgrid with the average salary at €67,000. Mr Slye said it is not the case that all Eirgrid staff get a bonus. 

"A significant proportion have not got their bonus when they have not met their targets," he said.

He also defended the company's investment in new projects, stating that they have taken public criticism seriously and addressed any concerns. 

"There was significant public opposition to the transmission grid and so we stepped back and took people's legitimate concerns and looked at how we could improve and do that job better." Mr Slye said.

"We published an extensive review. We need to spend more time engaging with communities and we are committed to that." 

He added that the company is also engaged with the regulator and determined to manage their costs in line with budgets for the next five years.