I beg to move Section 4, which is as follows:—
(1) Notwithstanding any statute, rule of law or order to the contrary any Under-Sheriff who shall have taken goods, animals or other chattels in execution under any writ offieri facias or under any decree of a Civil Bill Court may sell such goods, animals and chattels by public auction or private treaty at such place or places, whether within or outside his bailiwick, and whether within or outside the territorial boundaries of Saorstát Eireann in which in his opinion such goods, animals and chattels can be sold to the best advantage, and may remove such goods, animals and chattels or any of them or cause same to be removed from the place where same were seized to such place or places of sale.
(2) All goods, animals and other chattels taken in execution by any Under-Sheriff under any such writ or decree as aforesaid may pending the sale thereof be impounded, stored and kept by the Under-Sheriff in such place or places whether within or outside his bailiwick and whether within or outside the territorial boundaries of Saorstát Eireann as he shall think fit, and notwithstanding that such place or places is or are not appointed or authorized by law to be used as pounds.
(3) Wherever any goods, animals or other chattels shall be removed under this section by or by order of the Under-Sheriff to any place outside his bailiwick the Under-Sheriff shall in addition to the amount of the debt stated in the writ or decree under which such goods, animals and chattels were seized and of all charges leviable by law levy for the amount of all costs incurred by him,
(a) in or about the removal of such goods, animals and chattels from the places at which they were seized to every place (including the place of sale) to which such goods, animals and chattels are removed before the sale thereof,
(b) in or about the storing, impounding and preservation of such goods, animals and chattels (including the feeding and watering of such animals) between the time of seizure and the time of sale,
(c) in or about the sale and any attempted sale of such goods, animals or chattels other than a sale or attempted sale within the bailiwick of the Under-Sheriff.
All such costs and expenses as are mentioned in this sub-section may be deducted by the Under-Sheriff from the proceeds of the sale of the goods, animals and chattels as a first charge thereon.
(4) The Under-Sheriff shall be sole judge of the place or places at which any goods, animals or other chattels taken in execution by him can be sold to the best advantage and no action shall lie against any Under-Sheriff on account of his having sold any such goods, animals or chattels as aforesaid outside his bailiwick.
(5) In this section the expression "charges leviable by law" means charges leviable under any enactment, rule or order in force at the passing of this Act or under any provision of this Act other than this section.
I will not pretend to any optimism and will not say as is sometimes said when introducing such motions that I am sure it will be accepted unanimously. I am sure it will not, but it is a necessary provision, and it is one of the main proposals of the Bill. It is to give the Under-Sheriff power to sell outside his bailiwick, to remove chattels or live stock he may seize and sell elsewhere. The local auction in existing conditions in the country is not likely to prove a success and would not be in the truest interests of either the judgment debtor or the creditor. It is therefore proposed at the discretion of the Under-Sheriff to abolish it whenever he may think fit to do so, and that he shall have power to remove seized chattels or live stock outside the bailiwick. It provides that they may be impounded outside the bailiwick and if necessary outside the territorial boundaries of Saorstát Eireann.
This is not a penal provision. It is not penal in its intent and it will not prove penal in practice. Instead of the local auction, which resulted either in a defeat of the law by a cheap purchase by a judgment debtor or his kinsman or kinswoman, there will be a genuine sale, and it will not be a sale the public will go to believing that it is one where the man who is selling has no particular personal interest in getting the best price or where people will go expecting to get goods at half or one-third of the value. It means that the goods or live stock may be removed outside of the bailiwick, outside the tone of possible intimidation and certain local odium, and sold for their real value in an ther place. I submit the result to the creditor and to the debtor will be beneficial. It will be beneficial to the debtor as the real value of his property seized and sold will be secured, and of course, over and above the amount of his debts, and the amount of charges and fees, the proceeds of such sale will be handed back to him. In the past he was liable to have a beast worth £14 or £15 seized and sold for £7 or £8 as a bargain, because it was known it was a sheriff's sale, and the under-sheriff had no particular interest in the matter, beyond clearing the amount of his debt, plus some fees. Now, under this Bill the position will be, that the live stock will be removed outside the zone of intimidation and odium, and will be sold at their real value. It is not a hardship in these circumstances to say that the cost of their removal will be on the judgment debtor, in view of the fact that the whole thing is calculated to produce a much better price, and consequently to redound to his own interest.