PRIVATE BUSINESS. - LAND BILL, 1927—FIRST STAGE.

I move for leave to introduce a Bill entitled "an Act to amend the law relating to the occupation and ownership of land and for other purposes relating thereto."

Question—"That leave be given to introduce the Bill"—put and agreed to.

When is the Second Stage to be taken?

Next Tuesday.

I would ask the Minister that the Second Stage be taken this day fortnight.

The Minister for Agriculture is not here unfortunately, but he was anxious that the Second Stage of this Bill should be fixed for as early a date as possible, because there has been already a considerable amount of delay in connection with it. It is a long time since the original Bill was introduced. Then we are going to have a fairly heavy batch of legislation, and I think it would be undesirable to postpone the Second Reading of this measure for as long a period as a fortnight. After all it is the sort of Bill that, if the Minister for Agriculture were here, could be taken on Thursday. It is not the sort of Bill that is new, perhaps, and that needs considerable delay before it can be adequately read and understood. I do not know will Wednesday next suit the Deputy.

I want to have it fixed for this day fortnight. I think if the Minister for Lands and Agriculture were here he would oblige me in the matter.

If we get facilities for taking the Committee Stage soon after the Second Reading, we might agree to the Deputy's suggestion. If the House were agreeable that the Second Reading would be taken on this day fortnight and that the Committee Stage would be taken on the Thursday following, we would agree to that arrangement.

I think we could agree to that.

I do not know what the Ceann Comhairle may think about it, but it would mean that Deputies, after they have got the draft of the Bill, would have to be sending in their amendments.

I think the principle has been more or less adopted that the Second Stage has been, in fact, passed so that if the Bill is circulated in its new form it is a simple matter to proceed with the compilation of amendments. I have said it is a simple matter; it is a normal matter.

The Bill will be circulated to-morrow to Deputies. Does the Minister agree to take the Second Stage on this day fortnight?

On the understanding that there will not be the ordinary interval between the Second Stage and the Committee Stage.

Second Stage ordered for Tuesday, 22nd February.