Skip to main content
Normal View

Dáil Éireann debate -
Thursday, 8 Jun 1922

Vol. S2 No. 15


There is a motion here by Dr. O'Crowley. It is:

"To draw attention to the existing acute distress in the Barony of Erris, Co. Mayo, and to move that a sum of £5,000 be made available to alleviate it immediately."

I intimated to Dr. O'Crowley that that motion was out of order for the reason that has been stated already, that it must be moved by a Minister. It is a Ministerial motion.

Could we get out of it this way: a motion of this kind must be brought forward by a Minister, but suppose there are members of the House who feel strongly that a certain thing should be done, if there is such a feeling amonst the members of the House it ought to be possible if a private member moves a motion that the Minister for Finance be instructed to put on the paper a motion that such and such a sum be granted for such a purpose?

When the rule was drafted it was drafted in order to make it impossible for anyone but a Minister to move a money motion.

When the Orders were drafted it was with a view to preventing anybody outside a Minister moving a money vote. Now the only way is by drafting a new Order with regard to money resolutions.


Is not this motion covered, practically speaking, by the vote of £100,000 to the Minister for Labour for the same purpose?

It was mentioned on the same day as the other.


It seems to me that the easier way would be to get out of that by having it covered by the £100,000 vote. Could not the Deputy for Mayo tell us now——

He is not here.

That money is being looked after and will be applied to the relief of distress in Erris.

With respect to that, we would like to know your ruling. I would like to make it as difficult as possible for a private member to raise a matter which involves the expenditure of money, so that it would secure that no money would be voted without investigation, but I would not like to make it impossible.

I protest against wasting the time of the House on this matter. Everybody knows that if there is one safeguard it is that money should not be voted without due and proper notice. If you have a Ministry it is the duty of that Ministry to deal with matters of that kind. If the Ministry is unjust turn them out, but keep the business of the House in the Executive hands.

There is no doubt but the provision must have been put in here deliberately, but it is a most important one. If every member from every part of the House could bring forward a proposal for the spending of money it would bring the financial management of the Dáil practically to a nullity.

You always hear of money being safeguarded. It seems to me that we, as human beings, should think before we turn down with a light jest this demand for money for the people of Erris. I was there two months ago, before I left for America. I saw the starvation. If we have a pound to spare I would ask the Dáil not to put these petty red-tape excuses between us and our first duty.

I am afraid the Deputy is speaking under a complete misapprehension. There was a vote of £100,000. This is a proposed vote of £5,000. This £100,000 vote was supposed to cover the whole range of cases, including Erris.

Mr. Ruttledge was satisfied that it would, and the Minister for Local Government might have stated that.

If that had been stated it would have saved a lot of time.


I am not looking for advertisement, although I am up for election.

The next matter on the agenda is this motion: