Committee on Finance. - Transport Bill, 1955—Committee and Final Stages.

Section 1 agreed to.
Question proposed: "That Section 2 stand part of the Bill."

Amendment No. 1 is out of order.

Mr. Lemass

I gather you rule it out of order. I would like to argue whether it is out of order or not.

It is anticipated that the £12,000,000 we suggest will probably not be enough for the programme and one way or another we will have to come back to the Dáil. The cash they are getting will carry them up to 1959.

Mr. Lemass

I think the procedure should be to approve of a programme and provide for the raising of the capital. I was appalled, listening to the arguments advanced by Deputy O'Higgins in favour of the two-step arrangement, because it seems to imply a typical lawyer's approach. A legal mind limited this too and not the Minister.

Is the Deputy not a Doctor of Laws also?

Mr. Lemass

But only a phoney one.

Section 2 agreed to.
Section 3 agreed to.

Is not amendment No. 2 covered by the Minister's amendment No. 3?

My amendment No. 3 is intended to meet the objective which amendment No. 2 seeks to achieve.

Amendment No. 2 not moved.

I move amendment No. 3:—

In sub-section (1), page 3, line 1, for the definition of "redundancy" to substitute:—

"redundancy" means redundancy arising as a consequence of the substitution of diesel for steam traction.

The amendment is designed to ensure that all employees rendered redundant by dieselisation will be covered by the redundancy provisions of the Bill. Under the redundancy provisions of the Bill as introduced, men dismissed as an indirect result of dieselisation might not be so covered and this amendment has been drafted in order to remove any doubts in the matter. They will now be covered by this amendment.

Amendment agreed to.
Amendment No. 4 not moved.

I move amendment No. 5:—

To delete sub-section (3) and substitute a new sub-section as follows:—

(3) Where a person to whom this section applies is transferred by the board on the ground of redundancy from one position in its service to another and he thereby suffers a worsening of his conditions of service as an officer or servant of the board within the meaning of Section 37 of the Act of 1950, which shall apply for the purposes of this section, he shall be paid by the board compensation consisting of a lump sum of such amount as is reasonable.

It is intended to meet the objective which No. 4 seeks to achieve.

Amendment agreed to.

I move amendment No. 6:—

In sub-section (4), line 17, after "section" to add "as though the compensation under this section were compensation under Sections 38, 39 and 40 of the Act of 1950.

I move it in the hope of getting some clarification from the Minister as to why he thinks the section as it appears in the Bill covers the contingency that he hopes to cover. You will notice that Sections 41, 42 and 43 of the Act of 1950, which relate to the determination of compensation under that Act "shall apply to compensation under this section." I think that, in an effort to pin point what I regard as a weakness in the section as it stands at the moment, we might usefully refer to sections of the 1940 Act, referred to here in this particular section. Section 41 of the 1950 Act, stipulates that "if any dispute or difference arises between the board and any person entitled to, or claiming to be entitled to compensation under Sections 38, 39 and 40"— and it goes on to make certain provisions.

It appears to me at any rate that Section 41 of the 1950 Act deals with the determination of disputes in relation to compensation but it specifically refers to compensation under Sections 38, 39 and 40 of the 1950 Act. There is no doubt at all in my mind as to what the Minister seeks to do under this particular section but I put it to him does he not think there is a certain looseness in the wording of this particular sections as it appears in the Bill and does he not agree, because of the fact that Sections 41 and 42 of the 1950 Act refer specifically to Sections 38, 39 and 40 of that Act that if he leaves the section as it is at the moment there will be very wide room for legal argument.

I do not think there is any need to add the words set out in the amendment. This matter has been discussed with the parliamentary draftsman who has suggested that the addition of the words of the amendment would add nothing to the sense of Section 4, sub-section (4) of the Bill. Sections 38, 39 and 40 of the Transport Act, 1950, relate to the payment of compensation to employees rendered redundant by the amalgamation of C.I.E. and the Grand Canal Company. Sections 41, 42 and 47 of the Act provide for the settlement of disputes by arbitration and Section 4, sub-section (4) applies these sections to compensation payable under the Bill. I think the position is fully safeguarded. The matter has been checked with the parliamentary draftsman and he is likewise satisfied.

Does the Minister not see any danger at all in the section as it stands? We will assume than an employee who becomes redundant seeks to cover himself under Section 41 of the 1950 Act. He will seek, first of all, under Section 4 of this particular Act and he knows that Section 40 of the 1950 Act applies but he may well be told that Section 41 refers specifically to Sections 38, 39 and 40 of the 1950 Act. I know that an ordinary layman like myself might not have regard to that point at all but what I would worry about is that, when these particular sections get into the hands of the legal people, we know from our experience that anything may happen. My amendment sought to put the issue beyond doubt.

The issue is beyond doubt.

On your assurance, I will accept that.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
Section 4 agreed to.
Sections 5 to 8 agreed to.

Amendment No. 9 in the name of the Minister has been ruled out of order, as not relevant to the subject matter of the Bill.

Section 9 agreed to.
Title agreed to.
Bill reported without amendment.
Agreed to take remaining stages to-day.
Bill received for final consideration and passed.