Finance Bill, 1981: Financial Resolution.

I move:

That Part IV of the Finance (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1968, be amended as specified in the Act giving effect to this Resolution in relation to the treatment for the purposes of income tax and corporation tax of profits or gains or losses from dealing in or developing land.

Could I inquire the purpose of introducing a Financial Resolution at this stage and could I inquire further the implications of this legislation which the Minister has moved on this occasion?

This resolution is connected with the amendment which I propose to introduce on this Stage in relation to the tax treatment of profits or gains from dealing in development land. The Deputy will recall that I mentioned on Committee Stage that I was so doing. The amendments propose the insertion in the Bill of a new chapter, Chapter 7, containing two sections, Nos. 27 and 28. In introducing the amendment I shall fully explain what they are designed to achieve, when I reach that stage.

The amendments in question are not on the list of amendments which were circulated. I gather that they were circulated so late that they were not included in the list.

The Deputy should have them.

What amendment numbers is the Minister referring to?

Amendment No. 13 (a) It is a separate amendment under the heading of "Additional Amendments".

They are not on the list of amendments. There is no amendment No. 13 (a). Could I ask the Minister when they were circulated?

Does the Minister consider it satisfactory that an amendment of a very serious nature, involving significant changes in our law, should be circulated this morning for debate today, without any opportunity for people in the financial or legal community, who are expert in judging these matters and indicating the possible legal flaws that there may be in the proposals made by the Minister to examine it? Is this something that the Minister is satisfied with, that these should be circulated this morning for debate in this House for all the Minister knew no later than 4 o'clock this afternoon, without any possibility of the people with legal expertise outside this House bringing that expertise to bear in advising Members of this House as to whatever flaws there may be in this legislation? Does the Minister consider this a satisfactory procedure as far as the making of legislation is concerned? He is introducing highly complex sections, which were not even included in the main lists of amendments to the Bill but are introduced so late that they cannot be included even in the green list. If the Minister thinks that this is satisfactory, what purpose does he think this debate serves? If he thinks that this is a satisfactory manner of introducing legislation, he must not have much regard for the procedures which take place in this House.

The Chair would point out at this stage that we are dealing with a Financial Resolution item No. 4. We can only speak once on it and there can be no further debate. We speak once and that is all. The Minister is concluding now, I take it.

I want to reply to some of the points made by Deputy Bruton. I indicated on Committee Stage last week that it was my intention to introduce an amendment on Report Stage in relation to development land. When we come to discuss this specific amendment and when I give him the details——

There are ten pages of text in it.

I did not interrupt the Deputy, nor is it my habit to do so. If the Deputy was doing his homework, as I often did in Opposition, he would have had a copy of that amendment before he came into the House. There was ample time to get a copy.

All those pages.

I cannot be held responsible for a busy Fine Gael Front-bencher not doing his homework, nor am I accepting that responsibility.

That is ridiculous.

If the Deputy thinks that he is making——

I said that there was no opportunity to discuss with the experts outside this House, because of the late circulation of the amendment.

—— some stupid capital from what he has just said, I was about to say that, when we come to discuss the details of it, I hope every Deputy in this House will appreciate the reasons I am introducing it and the importance of introducing it at this stage in the interests of the Exchequer and in the national interest. I will explain in detail to the Deputy, when we come to it, what is involved and how serious and important it is that it should be included.

So important that the Minister did not make it available to people outside this House to examine it.

The amendment will be recommitted when we come to it.

I thought the Deputy's own expertise would be adequate.

Is the Financial Resolution agreed to?

Question put and agreed to.