Michael is currently a TD for Cork South Central and is the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform. He grew up in the harbour town of Passage West in County Cork. Before entering national politics, Michael served in local government as a member of Passage West Town Council and Cork County Council (Carrigaline electoral area). He was elected to Dáil Éireann at the first attempt in 2007 and has been re-elected in every election since (2011, 2016 and 2020).
Michael secured a first-class honours Commerce degree in UCC and went on to qualify as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG in Cork City. Before going into politics full time, Michael held senior positions in both the private sector (Financial Controller, RedFM) and public sector (Head of MIS, UCC). He is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Ireland and has served on that body’s Audit, Risk and Finance Committee. Michael has also undertaken studies with the London School of Economics and Political Science.
In his time in the Dáil, Michael has served on a number of Oireachtas committees including the Finance Committee, the Oireachtas Banking Inquiry, the European Affairs Committee and the Public Accounts Committee.
As Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Michael is responsible for delivering well-managed and well-targeted public spending, through modernised, effective and accountable public services. The department oversees the implementation of the National Development Plan, drives the programme of public service reform, and has a key role in decisions made across government.