UCD has spent over €150,000 since 2017 on events held in University Lodge, the official residence of UCD President Andrew Deeks. The figures, obtained via a Freedom of Information Request, break down the spending for each year, as detailed in the table below.
In accordance with the provisions of Chapter 3 of Statute 6 of the University, the president is required to reside in University Lodge, the mansion sized residence located at the back of the sports centre. It is a condition of the presidents occupation of the property that they use it for official university purposes. Amongst these include meeting and entertaining diplomatic and ambassadorial representatives, potential donors to the University and its foundations, visitors to the university who are of senior standing in their academic institutions, and hosting friends of the university who may be receiving honorary degrees or who have offered their services to the university.
Other requirements include using University Lodge to hold meetings regarding senior resource issues, strategy meetings, meetings with partner institutions or potential partner institutions, or interview boards where particularly high levels of confidentiality may need to apply.
The president pays for all normal tenant costs for the private element of the residence. UCD pays for costs relating to University Lodge’s official usages, outlined above.
University Lodge has been the target of anger in the past. UCD’s decision to spend over €1m in 2004 on renovations, more than had been initially allocated. Fergal Scully, the UCDSU President in 2004, questioned the move, in light of the 10% cut to UCD’s budget at the time. It was argued that due to the nature of the work, as well as it being a listed and protected building, the work was slow going, but necessary for the upkeep of the mansion.