"That a committee of seven members of the Dáil to be selected by the Committee of Selection, be appointed to inquire into and report on (1) the circumstances which led up to the granting to the Irish Bonded Film Store, Limited, or Messrs. McConnell and Hartley, of the contract for the projection of cinematograph films for censorship purposes; (2) the terms of said contract and the charges agreed to be paid to the Irish Bonded Film Store, Limited, or Messrs. McConnell and Hartley, for such projection; (3) the fees fixed for the censoring of films and the orders and regulations made under the Censorship of Films Act, 1923, and the basis on which such fees were fixed; (4) the effect of the import duty on films and amusements tax on the cinema trade, and the incidence of said taxes; and (5) to make recommendations as to the arrangements for the censoring of films which should be made on the termination of the said contract."
Before I agreed to allow this motion to go down in my name I took every reasonable precaution, in consultation with other Deputies who are interested, to see that there was nothing in the motion that would in any way pass a reflection on the Minister himself, or upon any of those who have been advising him in connection with this particular matter. I am not going to say anything now that would, in my opinion, prejudge or prejudice the decision of the Committee, which I hope the Dáil will agree to set up for the reasons given in the motion. If the Dáil is prepared to agree to the setting up of a committee for the purposes named I think it is very undesirable that I should go into any of the questions which that committee would rightly have to deal with. As far as I can understand, the main complaint of the people who have grievances in this matter is that the organisation which represents the film trade has not been taken into consultation in the way that it should by the Minister, before certain decisions were arrived at. The motion requests that the Dáil should agree to the setting up of a committee of seven members of the Dáil to be selected by the Committee of Selection "to inquire into and report on (1) the circumstances which led up to the granting to the Irish Bonded Film Stores, Limited, or Messrs. McConnell and Hartley, of the contract for the projection of cinematograph films for censorship purposes."
I want to say here and now that if there is any contract in existence which is regarded as legally binding for a certain period I do not claim in this resolution that that contract can be or should be terminated in any way until the period of the contract has expired. That is not demanded in the resolution which I am asking the Dáil to agree to. Questions have been asked in the House, I think, on several occasions, and by several Deputies, and one long statement, at any rate, has been made by the Minister for Justice in connection with the whole matter.