Health Minister Simon Harris told Stephen Donnelly, Fianna Féil health spokesman, in response to a parliamentary question last week, that the cost of installing nurses and other labour relations issues and the ex-Gratia cervical control programme contributed 56 million euros out of the 335 million euros in additional spending that the Euro D should approve this year. The terms of the agreement provide for a reduction in the public wage bill of 1 billion euros by 2015, although it does not contain any concrete guarantees of a reduction of the wage bill of 300 million euros for 2013, as the government had hoped. The Department of Health declined to mention the exact net cost of the nursing colony this year. The Croke Park Agreement, officially known as the Public Service Agreement 2010-2014, is an agreement between the Irish government and various public sector unions and representative organisations. It was named after croke Park, a large sports arena with conference facilities in Dublin, where negotiations took place. “The health department`s management is committed to implementing all aspects of the agreement, which is closely monitored by an HSE implementation plan. Funding for the implementation of the care agreement has been included in the 2020 budget and further details are expected to be specified in the HSE National Service Table. The current public service agreement is expected to be completed by the end of 2020 and comprehensive discussions on a succession contract are expected to begin in the spring or early summer of next year, so that unions can vote on the terms. Meanwhile, new official figures indicate that the cost of resolving the nurses` dispute last February will be higher than the amount set by the government at the time. The agreement, officially titled “The Public Service Agreement 2010-2014,” was signed by the ICTU on June 6, 2010. In the context of layoffs and wage cuts in the private sector, the government has agreed not to impose redundancies in the public sector or further wage cuts in the public sector. The Irish Times believes that the Minister of Public Expenditure, Paschal Donohoe, stated two weeks ago, in a confidential memo to cabinet, that the penultimate discussion with public service unions about a successor to the current agreement had discussed a process with a local bargaining component. However, he warned that no decision had yet been made. It is clear that he said that a one-size-fits-all approach – the format of all public service agreements since the Croke Park agreement in 2010 and which essentially led to the vast majority of public servants receiving the same increases – might not be supported by everyone on the union side. “With respect to the cost of the care contract, the full cost depends on nurses/midwives opting for the expanded practice roles they now have (as part of the transaction contract).