Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - House Building Subsidy.

asked the Minister for Local Government and Public Health if he is prepared to extend the period during which a subsidy of £70 is paid to private builders, in view of the fact that great numbers of them were prevented from proceeding with their houses, owing to the scarcity of Irish building materials.

I am not empowered to grant the extension referred to.

Is the Minister aware that owing to the inability of many people to secure slates and other materials of Irish manufacture certain delays did take place, delays for which the people concerned were in no way responsible, and in consequence they are liable to lose the subsidy?

In cases where it was shown to the satisfaction of the Department that Irish materials were not available, other materials were allowed to be used.

Is the Minister aware that in certain cases where his attention was drawn to the inability of the builder to get Irish materials the builder was recommended by the Department to communicate with certain sources from which the Department alleged he could get the Irish materials he required, that he wrote to the two sources mentioned and that he never received even the courtesy of a reply? The delay occasioned in the making of these inquiries has probably put him beyond the period when he would ordinarily get the subsidy of £70.

Is the Minister also aware that the scarcity of inspectors in his Department has been responsible in a great many cases for the fact that people were unable to proceed with the building of houses?

To-day we appointed six additional inspectors and that will make up for the delay.

It will not help those people very much.

Apparently the Minister for Local Government and Public Health is starting the hosting of officials now.