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Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 22 Apr 1969

Vol. 239 No. 12

Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Cash Payment for Land Purchases.


asked the Minister for Lands if he will make arrangements if necessary by the introduction of legislation for the purchase of all lands by paying cash instead of land bonds.


asked the Minister for Lands the amount of money that would be required to pay in cash for all land being acquired by the Land Commission.

With your permission, a Cheann Comhairle, I propose to take Questions Nos. 61 and 62 together.

The answer to the first question is in the negative. The land bond system of payment for lands acquired by the Land Commission has generally speaking worked satisfactorily down the years. The Deputy will be aware that the Land Act, 1965, removed the restrictive application of section 27 of the Land Act, 1950, and purchases for cash in the open market are now open to all the purposes of the Land Acts. In the financial year just ended a record amount of £410,000 cash was provided.

The payment of owners in cash for all lands acquired by the Land Commission would involve the provision of an amount of the order of £2 million per annum.

Would the Minister not agree that this arrangement for the buying of land by way of land bonds is one of the greatest obstacles to desirable land division and proper structural reform? How can he say it is not an obstacle when everyone in the Land Commission knows it is a serious obstacle?

No, it is not. Taking the whole question into consideration it is not an obstacle. As I have already pointed out to the Deputy, we are buying land and paying out considerable sums in cash.

Surely that can be taken as discrimination? What are the difficulties which are now caused? What is the expense in which the State is involved in relation to the litigation and the difficulties that are put in the way of buying and selling land for land bonds because of the drop in the value of the land bonds and because no one wants them?