Private Members' Business. - Local Government (Dublin) Bill, 1993; Report Stage: (Resumed).

Debate resumed on amendment No. 1:
In page 8, line 17, to delete "general".
—(Minister of State at the Department of the Environment).

Wexford): Deputy Rabbitte was concerned about whether property transfers would proceed. Section 6 is designed to provide a mechanism to ensure that the transfers will proceed and it is the subject of a separate amendment. The Minister has indicated that he wishes the transfer process to proceed without delay and it is primarily for this reason that a power of direction is provided by section 6. The transfer of houses and land was raised by a number of Deputies and these questions primarily relate to section 35 and to the Third Schedule. It would be more appropriate to discuss those matters when we reach those sections.

What about the annulling resolution?

Is amendment No. 1 agreed?

On a point of order, I take it that we do not have an opportunity to voice our objections to sections on Report Stage. Is that correct?

Amendment agreed to.

(Wexford): I move amendment No. 2:

In page 8, line 18, to delete "or for any particular purpose".

Amendment agreed to.
Amendment No. 3 not moved.

(Wexford): I move amendment No. 4:

In page 8, lines 35 and 36, to delete "and may provide for the giving of directions by the Minister".

Is the amendment agreed?

No. The only vehicle I have for objecting to the section is to oppose one of the ministerial amendments.

Amendment put and declared carried.

(Wexford): I move amendment No. 5:

In page 8, lines 41 and 42, after "operation" where it secondly occurs to insert the following:

"but no regulations shall be made under this subsection after the expiration of 3 years after the establishment day".

Amendment put.
The Dáil divided: Tá, 49; Níl, 25.

  • Ahern, Dermot.
  • Ahern, Michael.
  • Aylward, Liam.
  • Bell, Michael.
  • Bree, Declan.
  • Brennan, Matt.
  • Broughan, Tommy.
  • Browne, John (Wexford).
  • Byrne, Hugh.
  • Coughlan, Mary.
  • Ellis, John.
  • Ferris, Michael.
  • Fitzgerald, Brian.
  • Flood, Chris.
  • Foley, Denis.
  • Gallagher, Pat the Cope.
  • Haughey, Seán.
  • Higgins, Michael D.
  • Hilliard, Colm M.
  • Hughes, Séamus.
  • Hyland, Liam.
  • Jacob, Joe.
  • Kavanagh, Liam.
  • Kenneally, Brendan.
  • Kenny, Seán.
  • Killeen, Tony.
  • Lawlor, Liam.
  • Leonard, Jimmy.
  • McCreevy, Charlie.
  • McDaid, James.
  • Moffatt, Tom.
  • Moynihan, Donal.
  • Moynihan-Cronin, Breeda.
  • Mulvihill, John.
  • Nolan, M.J.
  • Ó Cuiv, Eamon.
  • O'Hanlon, Rory.
  • O'Keeffe, Batt.
  • O'Leary, John.
  • O'Shea, Brian.
  • O'Sullivan, Toddy.
  • Pattison, Séamus.
  • Power, Seán.
  • Ryan, Eoin.
  • Ryan, Seán.
  • Smith, Brendan.
  • Stagg, Emmet.
  • Walsh, Eamon.
  • Woods, Michael.

Níl

  • Ahearn, Theresa.
  • Barrett, Seán.
  • Bradford, Paul.
  • Browne, John (Carlow-Kilkenny).
  • Bruton, John.
  • Bruton, Richard.
  • Carey, Donal.
  • Crawford, Seymour.
  • Deenihan, Jimmy.
  • Doyle, Avril.
  • Mitchell, Jim.
  • Nealon, Ted.
  • Noonan, Michael (Limerick East).
  • Dukes, Alan M.
  • Durkan, Bernard J.
  • Finucane, Michael.
  • Fitzgerald, Frances.
  • Flanagan, Charles.
  • Hogan, Philip.
  • Lowry, Michael.
  • McCormack, Pádraic.
  • McGahon, Brendan.
  • McGrath, Paul.
  • O'Keeffe, Jim.
  • Sheehan, P.J.
Tellers: Tá, Deputies Pat the Cope Gallagher and Ferris; Níl, Deputies Browne (Carlow-Kilkenny) and Barrett.
Amendment declared carried.

Amendments Nos. 6 and 7 are related and may be discussed together.

I move amendment No. 6:

In page 9, to delete lines 30 to 43.

This subsection is a dictatorial provision in the legislation. It states that "the Minister may give to the relevant local authorities and the managers such general or particular directions in relation to the execution of or compliance with any provision of this Act or regulations thereunder". In section 6 (6) the legislation states that "A person to whom a direction is given under this Act shall comply therewith." To insert a provision in the legislation where the Minister can give a direction to both the local authority through its elected members and to the manager stands the principle of local democracy on its head. I do not see the necessity for that in this legislation. The legislation provides that the Minister may make regulations and that those regulations shall be compiled with.

Under various sections of the Bill the Minister will have the power to make regulations dealing, for example, with county boundaries, management and so on. It was not explained on Committee Stage why it was necessary to include this sweeping provision in the legislation. I do not think it is necessary. It is in conflict with the sentiments expressed by the Minister during the past year. He has spoken at great length about the idea of devolving powers and local democracy. Yet this provision has been included in the legislation with the result that he will be able to tell councillors and the county manager what to do and they will have to comply. That is not local democracy; it is dictatorship. It is not necessary to include this provision in the Bill and it should be deleted. This is the purpose of my amendment. This would not undermine the other provisions of the Bill.

The only reason I can think of that it has been included in the Bill is that the Minister thinks that local authorities will not comply with his directions. This would be extraordinary, given, as was mentioned earlier in the debate, that the three new local authorities — Dublin Fingal, South Dublin and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown — have co-operated and worked enthusiastically to adhere to the target date of 1 January 1994 for the establishment of the new county councils. I attended a pleasant function yesterday evening on the occasion of the last meeting of Dún Laoghaire Borough Council——

(Wexford): I was not invited.

——at which many eminent former members of the council, former managers and staff were present. We are ready to go on 1 January and there is great co-operation.

Given what has happened during the past year and a half to two years, I do not see either the managers or the members being recalcitrant and refusing to comply with regulations made by the Minister. The Minister of State should indicate if he anticipates the local authorities and the managers will not comply and therefore he requires this provision. There is no necessity for it and it should be deleted.

I am concerned about section 6. In amendment No. 6 Deputy Gilmore proposes to delete lines 30 to 43. I have a difficulty with subsection (4) in which the words "for those authorities such general or particular directions in relation to ..." appear. The Minister of State is not being consistent. He has already deleted the words "or for any particular purpose" from the Bill, narrowing the scope of directions, regulations or orders made under this legislation. I refer Members to section 3 (4), which will now read "The Minister may make regulations for the general purposes of this Act". However, the Minister of State does not propose to delete the words "such general" in section 6 (4). If he is to be consistent he should delete them. On Second and Committee Stages the Minister, Deputy Smith, was sensitive to the concerns expressed in relation to the general powers that he was retaining to direct or order any of these three local authorities should any problems or issues arise during the next three years. In the Bill as initiated it was proposed that he would retain this power indefinitely.

If the subsection read "The Minister may give to the relevant local authorities and the managers for those authorities particular directions in relation to the execution of or compliance with any provision of this Act" I would be much happier. I do not understand the reason any Minister would want to assume powers to give managers general directions. If we give the Minister the power to give managers general directions it must be bad legislation. I understand that the Minister may need to interfere if an issue arises but I do not support the proposal that he be given the power to give general directions in this area. I am being consistent in the sense that in the amendment we have just passed the Minister deleted the words "or for any particular purpose". Therefore, I share the concern expressed by Deputy Gilmore about this section.

It is an affront to local government and local democracy that the Minister of State feels he has to include subsection (6), which reads as follows: "A person to whom a direction is given under this Act shall comply therewith". It is being assumed that they will not comply if the Minister gives a direction, issues a regulation, an order or a statutory instrument. Can the Minister of State say if the local authorities, either at management or executive level, have not complied with ministerial directives to such an extent that he must safeguard his powers by including subsection (6)? The Minister of State served for many years on a county council and should be in a position to view this matter from the perspective of local government as well as from the perspective of national Government. I hope he will agree that subsection (6) flies in the face of devolution of the functions of local government and of subsidiarity. I hope he can give us a good justification for retaining it in the Bill. While I do not have any major objections to subsection (4), apart from the words "such general", I will have to support Deputy Gilmore's amendment unless the Minister of State can justify the inclusion of subsection (6), which I find repugnant in terms of the role of the local councillor and local government.

During the course of the debate on Committee Stage, Opposition spokespersons expressed misgivings at the fact that the Minister was retaining so many powers to make regulations. Those Members directly involved in the reorganisation of Dublin County Council into three new county council mentioned that managers, officials and, indeed, the elected representatives were co-operating. I genuinely felt that the Minister has noted our views. He indicated at that time that he would examine the section again before Report Stage. I refer in particular to amendment No. 7. While Deputy Gilmore wants to delete the offending passages, the Minister proposes to include a new subsection (8), which reads as follows: "A direction shall not be given under this section after the expiration of three years from the establishment day...." The Minister explained that he would have to have certain powers to give directions if, following the establishment of the three new county councils, there were extraordinary circumstances.

I was prepared to accept that explanation at the time. Now we are on Report Stage and the Minister has gone a very small distance towards meetings our concerns. By the time the three years provided for expires it will be time for the next local elections, unless there are plans to postpone them. This amendment is nonsensical. It would make far more sense if he were to review the section in its entirety and come back and say that he trusts the management, the officials and the local representatives. That is not evident from this amendment which implies that the Minister wants to exercise control for a period of three years. That is not acceptable. Why this insistence on control rather than the exercise of true democracy at local level which the Minister for the Environment has preached at us time and time again?

Much depends on which county one is standing in when one reads the section. People in South Dublin will have a great deal of interest in this section when we come to deal with the transfer of certain assets from Dublin Corporation to South Dublin. There may be difficulties down the line and it would be useful to have this section in operation for a period of time while negotiations take place between the three new county councils and Dublin Corporation. It is important that, should any dispute arise, the Minister would have a means of intervening and imposing a fair solution. Other disputes may arise between certain neighbouring counties and in the event of such disputes not being resolved we would all look to the Minister to intervene. If there is non-compliance by the new councils, somebody must make a decision.

(Wexford): Amendment No. 7 limits the scope of the section by providing a timeframe within which such directions may be given. The result is that the section is of no effect after that period expires. The time limit for giving directions which do not relate to the transfers of land or housing, under the Third Schedule, expires after three years from the establishment day i.e. 31 December 1996. The Minister may give directions related to schemes approved by him under the Third Schedule for a period of three years from the approval of such schemes. Directions may only be given in so far as is necessary for securing or facilitating the operation of any provision of the Act. These powers are only seen as a necessary safeguard in the start-up phase. Concern was expressed by some Deputies at the power of direction vested in the Minister by section 6.

At the same time several Deputies, including Deputy Gilmore, have asked the Minister to ensure that there is no delay in the implementation of the transfer provisions of the Third Schedule. We have tried to meet both concerns by limiting the period in which directions may be given to three years but in the case of the transfers the period is three years from the date of approval of a transfer scheme under the Third Schedule. As the schemes must be submitted to the Minister within 12 months of the establishment day this would most likely mean a period of about four years as the time frame within which any such direction could be given. The reason for this is that the schemes are required to set out a time-scale for implementation and the power of direction should be available if necessary.

I hope that the amendment will meet the concerns of Deputy Gilmore and others. On Committee Stage the Minister emphasised the necessity of having such a power of direction. However, by "putting a three year" time restriction on the provision, I hope that Deputies will see the power not as an idle instrument but as a necessary mechanism and a reminder to ensure that sufficient priority is given to their responsibilities by the authorities concerned. Given the amendment and the Minister's commitment to use this provision only if absolutely essential, I hope Deputy Gilmore is sufficiently reassured as to the Minister's intention and will withdraw his amendment.

Deputy Doyle raised some points that I would like to refer to. She objected to section 6 (6) which requires a person to whom a direction is given to comply with it. What would be the point of vesting power in the Minister to issue directions if they did not have to be complied with? This would not make much sense. Section 6 (6) follows logically on the provision being vested in the Minister to issue directions, nothing more and nothing less.

Far from being reassured, I think the Minister's amendment makes the section far worse. There are two reasons for that. On the one hand he is providing for a three year time-scale within which the process of reorganisation and the establishment of the new county councils must be completed. The county councils are away ahead of the Minister. They never asked for a three year time-scale. The managers have met the deadline given to them under the 1991 legislation and have produced their reorganisation report. The 1991 legislation stated that this was to be done as soon as possible; there was certainly no time-scale set down. The elected members of the councils, immediately on being elected in 1991, proceeded to devolve their reserved functions to the area committees within a very short time, with the full co-operation of their councils.

The whole process of negotiation has been undertaken in the two local authorities with the trade unions representing the staff in relation to very complex matters, including a degree of disruption in the relocation of staff with people working in O'Connell Street being relocated to Dún Laoghaire or Swords or Tallaght, the process of the establishment of new offices and the range of practical measures that had to be undertaken to get the show on the road. All that was done. Now that the councils themselves are moving ahead at great speed to meet the deadline on 1 January 1994, the Minister says there are to be three more years. What for? The councils have already proceeded with the reorganisation, as have the managers and staff. These county councils will be up and running on 1 January and will want to move ahead as county councils. They do not want to be in some kind of limbo waiting for directions from the Minister to give effect to various parts of the legislation between now and three years time. Three years will take us beyond the date of the next local elections or, at least, the date on which they are due. This provision will make the legislation worse.

It would be much better not to have any provision for dictatorship from the top, which is what the Minister is proposing. The legislation should be left as it is and we should build on the enthusiasm of the county councils to move ahead. The provision in amendment No. 7 is one that sends the legislation down the plug hole. It states that Dublin Corporation's housing stock and its land must be transferred to the new county councils. Tenants have been in a "limbo land" for years. They are tenants of one authority and elect members to a different authority but have no redress to the housing authority which governs their day to day lives through elected representatives. The Minister is now saying that those buildings, flats, houses and lands will not be transferred for five years.

The Third Schedule says that the transfer scheme will be implemented within 12 months, provided there is no extension. Within that one year period consultation must take place between the various managers, between the manager giving the land and his council and between the manager receiving the houses and his council. It is possible that that 12 months period might be extended and I adverted to that on Committee Stage. The order will then be passed to the Minister and it could be on his desk for a long time. How long was the special amenity order for the Liffey Valley, which was not a complex matter, on the Minister's desk? It was on his desk for more than two years before it was signed. An order for a scheme could be passed to the Minister and lie on his desk because of a general election, a heave in Fianna Fáil or for any number of reasons that would delay its signing. The period could be extended for a further year.

When the order is approved Dublin Corporation has three years to dither, delay and avoid handing over the housing stock to the neighbouring local authority. This is a concession to Dublin Corporation. I distinctly recall that the Minister for the Environment, in response to the previous debate on the transfer of houses, said he would stick to what was provided in the Bill. He has caved in. City Hall has won the argument. It will now be five years before those tenants will be tenants of the housing authority to which they elect representatives. It will be an unmitigated disaster. It will be a further period of purgatory for the 8,000 tenants of Dublin Corporation who are currently living in the Dublin County Council administrative area and who will be citizens of the new county council area.

I am disappointed the Minister gave no indication on Committee Stage that he was going to show the white feather in this manner. The provision is being introduced in a disingenuous way by stating that in some way it is putting a barrier on the Minister's powers. It is providing a let-out in relation to the transfer of the houses. It is a major setback and disappointment to those people who are tenants of Dublin Corporation and who had hoped they would be enfranchsied by the Bill. Unfortunately, that enfranchisement and their democratic rights to elect people to be members of a local authority which is also their housing authority, is being denied to them for a period of five years. That is a great mistake and I oppose that provision.

Question, "That the words proposed to be deleted stand" put and agreed to.
Amendment declared lost.

(Wexford): I move amendment No. 7:

In page 9, after line 49, to insert the following:

"(8) A direction shall not be given under this section after the expiration of three years from the establishment day, save a direction in respect of any matter arising in relation to a scheme approved by the Minister under the Third Schedule, and any such direction shall not be given after the expiration of three years from the date of such approval.".

Amendment put and declared carried.

I move amendment No. 8:

In page 10, line 3, to delete "The Minister shall by order appoint a day to" and substitute "1st January, 1994 shall".

I tabled this amendment on Committee Stage. The general expectation is that the new county councils will come into effect on 1 January 1994. That date has been signalled from the beginning as the target date for the establishment of the three new county councils and the winding up of Dublin County Council and Dún Laoghaire Corporation. I was surprised that the published Bill did not state that 1 January would be the establishment date for the Bill and for the setting up of the new county councils. When I tabled the amendment on Committee Stage the Minister stated that he intended that 1 January would be the start up date but that he wanted a certain amount of flexibility. For example, if unforeseen circumstances arose between now and 1 January, he wanted to be able to set an establishment date for the Bill other than 1 January. The Minister did not elaborate further on the matter on Committee Stage. Because he emphatically stated on Committee Stage that it was his intention that the start up date would be 1 January, I did not press the issue. I understood that the Minister had put on record his intention that 1 January would be the start-up date and that was the date we were working towards. It had not occurred to me that there might be some unforeseen circumstances between now and 1 January that would cause that date to be changed.

On reflection, I do not know what those unforeseen circumstances are. Everybody is working towards 1 January. Dún Laoghaire Borough Council held its last monthly meeting last night and celebrated the occasion in an appropriate fashion. Dublin County Council will do the same next week. All the staffs of the authorities are getting ready for 1 January. I met staff in Dún Laoghaire Town Hall this morning wandering around the corridor looking for their new offices and inspecting their working conditions.

Did they stay overnight?

Everybody is geared up for 1 January and the Minister is worried about unforeseen circumstances. I do not know what the unforeseen circumstances might be. A guillotine will be applied to the legislation as it is intended that it will pass through the House by 5 p.m. tomorrow. There are still two working weeks for the Bill to pass through the Seanad and be signed by the President. During the debate on the Bill nobody has raised any possible constitutional difficulties in regard to it. Despite reservations I may have in regard to the legislation, I do not foresee any constitutional difficulties arising. What are the unforeseen circumstances? There are no administrative unforeseen circumstances. The only cloud I see on the horizon — perhaps I am being a little unfair to the Minister having regard to his public comments on the matter earlier this year — is the requirement by Dublin County Council to have the review of its development plan completed before 1 January. A special meeting of the county council is scheduled for next Friday to adopt the county development plan. I intend to ensure that there will be a division on that matter because I hold the view that, notwithstanding all the work that went into preparation of the county plan, we would be better off without the draft plan before us. That is the only possible unforeseen circumstances that could arise.

Could it be that the Minister for the Environment, who earlier this year was so vocal about his concerns as to what was happening in Dublin County Council with regard to the review of the development plan, is providing some "out" where, if the development plan is not adopted by Christmas — there has been one successful legal challenge to the development plan during the week — the county council could continue in existence beyond 1 January in order to pull it out of the fire? It is a pity the Minister is not here to respond to this question. Perhaps the Minister of State will tell us what are the unforeseen circumstances that are causing the Minister not to set down in the Bill the establishment date of 1 January but to do so by way of order? As this is 7 December surely at this eleventh and a half hour the establishment date of 1 January could be inserted in the Bill. I am proposing that we include such a provision to put beyond doubt the establishment date. Having dealt with this matter at local level for the last year and a half I do not understand what are the unforeseen circumstances about which the Minister is concerned.

I am a little taken aback by Deputy Gilmore's comments. If the Minister was to include in the Bill the establishment date of 1 January he would be the first to say that the Government has decided on an establishment date.

There is consensus in regard to the establishment date.

In those circumstances people may ask, what about democracy which permits full consultation among the elected Members of this Chamber? It is in that context that some mechanism must be provided to cover the eventualities that could arise.

For example, even though the Government has an overall majority, circumstances may arise where the Bill is not passed in the Seanad.

It is a long time since anything unforeseen happened in the Seanad.

All eventualities must be provided for Deputy Gilmore knows as well as I do that all documentation and correspondence issued to area managers on the basis of an establishment date of 1 January. In addition, the period 1 January to 24 January was set down as the period within which the new councils would discuss the Estimates. If it was not the Minister's intention to establish the councils on 1 January, such documentation would not have issued.

That can be changed.

Much detail has to be discussed between now and 5 p.m. tomorrow. While Deputy Gilmore has a democratic right to home in on this element, it is not one of the most important points——

That is not a very favourable argument. The Deputy can do better than that.

Such a mechanism would be provided by any Minister, even by Deputy Gilmore if he was Minister. I do not agree with his comments on this amendment.

Time will tell.

I did not intend to intervene on this amendment but the argument made by Deputy Ryan is a little off-beam. If this amendment was accepted and the Bill was not passed in the Seanad, it would not matter whether 1 January was included. I agree with Deputy Gilmore on this matter. It is extraordinary that the Minister did not agree to this amendment on Committee Stage. The establishment of the three new county councils has been at all times facilitated by management, the officials and the elected members, and everybody is working on this basis. A very nice ceremony was held last night at Dún Laoghaire Borough Council when we said our formal farewells.

That is a new name for it.

It will be extraordinary if we have to say another good-bye in January. I do not know what the difficulty is in this regard. The Minister said he is providing for unforeseen circumstances, but I cannot foresee any circumstance where the county councils will not be established on 1 January. I doubt if the Minister can put an argument to us about unforeseen circumstances.

(Wexford): This amendment seeks to confirm in the legislation that 1 January 1994 shall be the establishment day. I wish to reiterate the Minister's full intention to appoint 1 January 1994 as the establishment day. However, it is desirable to retain some flexibility in the event of some unforeseen event. There is nothing sinister in this provision. It is included simply and solely as a safeguard.

Given the Minister's firm intention to appoint 1 January 1994 as the establishment day and his comments during Committee Stage, I am surprised Deputy Gilmore has retabled his amendment. In the circumstances, I would ask the Deputy if he would consider withdrawing his amendment. Further evidence of the Minister's commitment to a 1 January date is the fact that he has already, under existing legislation, fixed the period up to 21 January as the period within which the new county councils are to hold their Estimates meetings.

Deputy Gilmore raised the question of unforeseen circumstances and I will give some examples. Possible legal action in relation to certain provisions of the Bill would suggest that a start-up date of 1 January should not be set out in this Bill. Such legal doubts have been raised by representatives of Dublin Corporation in relation to section 35 and the Third Schedule. While it is extremely likely that such doubts would translate into a legal challenge, it is unwise to absolutely commit the establishment date to a specific date in the Bill which cannot be altered.

In relation to legislation generally it is standard practice for the establishment date for a new statutory body to be fixed by order. This practice has been followed in the preparation of legislation because many unforeseen circumstances may arise. It is sound practice to follow this long established precedent in this House.

If 1 January is to be the establishment date let us make it clear that that is so. The type of circumstances referred to by the Minister — legal challenges, etc. — can equally occur if the date is set by way of order. A person can go into court and succeed in having the establishment of the county councils delayed or deferred. I do not think we can anticipate what might happen in such a situation.

I am not aware of any imminent challenge to the establishment of the county councils although the Minister referred to the possibility of a challenge under section 35. I am delighted Deputy Broughan joined us as I was beginning to think he was the real Minister for the Environment — the arguments he made on Committee Stage seem to have made more impact on the Minister than the arguments made by the rest of us. A challenge under section 35 would not affect the establishment date of the county councils because, under the provisions proposed by the Minister, the transfer of the housing stock will not effectively take place for five years after the enactment of the legislation. Therefore, if there is a challenge under section 35 Deputy Broughan and his colleagues on Dublin City Council will have five years within which to mount a challenge; it will not require a challenge to the establishment date. Therefore, the Minister's arguments in this regard are not sound.

I have not heard any substantial opposition to the idea of establishing county councils. Concern has been expressed, some of which I share, about the workability of large local authorities such as those proposed. I made this point during the debate on the 1991 legislation. The only legal challenge about which the Minister might be worried is the one yesterday to aspects of the Dublin County Development Plan, which is under review, and the possible further challenges to that plan. I think there might be much more concern about the possibility of legal challenges to the adoption of the development plan and where a January deadline in the legislation would leave that process. If that is the case then the Minister should state it openly in the House. If the real story is that the Minister is concerned the county development plan will not be adopted by Christmas, that many developers and land owners will be disappointed if it is not adopted and that a period of time will be allowed after 1 January to enable them to have a second bite at the cherry then the Minister should say so instead of inventing phantom legal challenges which do not exist. I ask you, a Cheann Comhairle, to put my amendment to the House.

Amendment put and declared lost.

Amendment No. 8a is deemed out of order.

Amendment No. 8a not moved.

We now proceed to amendment No. 9 in the name of Deputy Eamon Gilmore. I observe that amendments Nos. 10 and 13 are related, amendment No. 11 is an alternative to amendment No. 10 and amendment No 12 is consequential on amendment No. 13. I suggest, therefore, that we discuss amendments Nos. 9 to 13, inclusive, together by agreement. Is that satisfactory? Agreed.

I move amendment No. 9:

In page 11, line 43, to delete "Theas" and substitute "Thiar-Theas".

We had a lengthy debate on this issue on Committee Stage and I do not propose to repeat all the arguments. Basically what is at issue is the name of the South Dublin County Council. Under the Bill the South Dublin County Council will cover an area stretching from the Liffey to Rathfarnham: it will effectively have responsibility for Lucan, part of Blanchardstown, Castleknock, Rathcoole, Clondalkin, and Marley Park. It is defying the rules of geography to call all that area "South Dublin". Obviously part of the area would qualify, by any definition of the term, as South Dublin, but to include areas which have always been regarded as West Dublin defies the English and Irish languages and the basic rules of geography. It is a nonsense and will cause untold confusion, not only in the new county which will be called South Dublin, but also in the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown county, much of which is commonly referred to as South County Dublin. This is a great mistake.

The reasoning behind this proposal was contained in the Barrington report which recommended that the existing Dún Laoghaire Borough should be extended as far as the Stillorgan Road and established as a city and that the remainder of County Dublin should be divided in two by the Liffey, one part of which would be under the control of a north county council, Fingal County Council, and the other part of which would be under the control of a south county council. In the context of the Barrington report that recommendation made some sense. However, a different option was taken from the one recommended in the report, that of retaining the three districts established in 1985. Perhaps as a result of an oversight, one of them, the Belgard district, was redefined as the South Dublin district, inheriting the description in the Barrington report. This happened mainly because Committee Stage debate on the 1991 legislation was guillotined and we did not have an opportunity to debate in detail the section dealing with the names of the county councils. If we had had an opportunity to debate that section this current nonsense would not have crept in.

On Committee Stage the Minister, in his fair minded way, said he would like to leave the naming of the county councils to the councils themselves. He put down an amendment which proposes that the councils will have a year during which to ponder their names. To the best of my knowledge, the Fingal County Council has agreed to retain that name. Therefore, it is unhelpful to suggest, as the Minister does in his amendment, that this council should rethink its name. The Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Council agonised about its name as it is a bit of a mouthful. We toyed with various options and eventually the title Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown grew on us and we decided that we would live with that title.

The Minister, by introducing his amendment asking us to reconsider this for another year, is unhelpful because it is reopening a debate in the context of that county council that we thought we had resolved and finalised. In any event, it is not true to say that the county councils are deciding the names of the counties because in many ways the names of the counties were decided in 1991. Perhaps one could say they were decided in 1985 because that is when the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown and the Fingal idea originated, but South Dublin came into being in 1991. I know there has been debate on the South Dublin Council about this; I know there is divided opinion on the South Dublin Council about it and that marginally the South Dublin Council came down in favour of retaining the South Dublin name.

This House has a responsibility to ensure that a county council, which is being established by an Act of the Oireachtas, is not named in a way that makes nonsense of geography, that will cause confusion to the public and cause confusion in the delivery of services whether it is a public service such as Telecom or An Post, or whatever. If somebody is sent out in a van to make a delivery in South Dublin they would probably head for the N11; now they will have to head for the N4 and look for the Galway road. I believe this will cause a great deal of confusion.

To look at this issue in a practical way, there is a long established local newspaper whose circulation area virtually coincides with the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown county. It was originally calledSouthside and now it is called Southnews. Will people think that that is the newspaper of the South Dublin County Council? Businesses, for example, that are located in areas like Dundrum, Shankill or any part of south County Dublin which have south County Dublin or south Dublin or southside in their title will now be expected to be found in Tallaght and Clondalkin. It will cause a great deal of confusion. It is a great mistake and returning it to the county councils will not resolve the problem. I certainly do not think that reopening the debate in two of the county councils, where the matter has now been resolved with a degree of finality, is helpful. The House should decide decisively and in the interests of common sense.

We are taking quite a number of amendments together, at least we are speaking to them. My amendment introduces the concept of keeping Dublin county in the title of the three new local authorities. As I said on Second Stage and again on Committee Stage, I feel strongly about keeping the Dublin identity and the concept of Dublin county in the title of the three county councils. I feel strongly that the heritage, identity and culture of the greater Dublin area should be recognised in naming the new county councils.

The Minister has said on a number of occasions that it will be up to each local authority finally to decide on a title. If that was to be the case the Minister could have left this section blank, we need not have put any name on the new county council. If we are to propose names in order to get them up and running, let us choose names that are actually meaningful. If the local authorities subsequently want to change the name, let us listen to what they have to say at that stage but let us not start off with a title that is completely meaningless, particularly the South Dublin title. In that regard I am asking the Minister to accept my amendment.

On Committee Stage I had suggested the title Dublin County of Dún Laoghaire. I actually find Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown to be a mouthful even though I am very familiar with it, having lived in that constituency when it was once called Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown electorally speaking.

The Dublin County of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown is not much better.

The official title that goes in the Bill must recognise it. I feel strongly about this because I was born and reared in the area. I have been living outside it for some time. Perhaps one recognises the importance of these things more than when one is living there all the time. One can be too familiar with a situation to appreciate it. I move back from the idea of the Dublin County of Dún Laoghaire, which I would have preferred, to recognise what I thought were the wishes of those living in the area in that they seemed to accept the concept of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, and so be it.

The point of my amendment that I feel most strongly about is the concept of incorporating the expression "the Dublin County of ..." in the title. The Dublin County of whatever can be decided if necessary by the local authority concerned but I would like to see a uniform nomenclature. When we are dividing County Dublin into three administrative areas the title of the three areas should bear witness to the fact that they are all County Dublin and all originated from the greater Dublin area. For example, they may call the Dublin County of Fingal "Dublin Fingal". For Dún Laoghaire, I would be quite happy with Dublin South-West but when it comes to officially naming something it is normally longer and more expensive than perhaps we feel it needs to be.

This is not a laughing matter and these are not frivolous amendments because it is important we start with a name that is actually meaningful. It is as of much interest to those living outside Dublin as it is to those living in the area, because we are talking about our capital city and at the moment County Dublin represents the county of our capital city and it is very important that we get this right.

The Minister, in defence of his view and in opposing my view on Committee Stage, referred to the position in Tipperary. County Tipperary is divided into two county councils but the word "Tipperary" appears in both titles. In opposing my view and using that example as a defence he was actually supporting the case I was making if he thought about it for long enough. All I am asking is that we do the same for County Dublin now that we are dividing it into three administrative areas. What I am saying is logical and it makes the concept of the three new county councils in the greater Dublin area more meaningful.

The Dublin County of South-West incorporates Deputy Gilmore's amendment and I fully accept that South Dublin is totally meaningless as a description of the area it purports to identify. It will cause untold confusion in the delivery of any number of services and untold confusion electorally when, for the purposes of general elections, South Dublin will mean something different for local authority elections.

I would ask the Minister of State to seriously accept my amendment, or others that will be moved here today. Not wishing to reflect at all on the position of the Minister of State present, the frustrating thing about spending hours debating a serious Bill like this is that we do not have the Minister present, as distinct from the Minister of State — and I respect the fact that the Minister of State present had little choice in the matter. We really do not stand up and make our case with any real hope that the Minister of State will have the authority to accept our amendments. Quite frankly, the Minister of State comes in here briefed on how to respond to the list of amendments circulated. With respect, I do not think he has the authority to accept any of the cases we make here this evening and the debate therefore is somewhat of a charade.

I find the Bill before us too important to have to go through all the histrionics we will go through in this House this evening, the various postures and positions and that when there is a vote the troops will knock-down anyway. It is all very staged. The only possibility we have is to try to convince a full Cabinet Minister to accept a point we made, or even to guarantee us that in the course of a Seanad debate he would take on board some or all of the points we make here. But with respect, the Minister of State present is not in a position to do that, so it is all a little bit of an exercise in nothing. It might have been simpler had he come in, read all of the briefs onto the record and gone home.

The Deputy is being unfair.

No, I am being factual. What is more, the Minister of State knows I am being factual and that I speak from experience of having been a Minister of State. Indeed, this "rent a Minister" syndrome runs throughout all Government Departments. That is not to reflect on the Minister of State at all; it is a reflection on the way the system operates. When the Minister is out of town there is a mad flurry to ascertain who will be around, to thrust the script into their hands and wheel them into the House, whether that be the Seanad or here. That has nothing to do with the Minister of State present and he knows that. I speak as a person who was used in that way myself as a Minister of State at the very same Department of the Environment, the very same position. Therefore, there is a frustration in terms of the strength of feeling some of us have about the cases we make here and, quite frankly, a general view that the Minister of State is not in a position even to respond by saying he will examine it in the Seanad or revert to us after the Seanad debate.

I would urge the Minister of State not to pursue the nomenclature in this Bill, which is really a mongrel version of Barrington's proposal, as was pointed out by Deputy Gilmore. It appears somebody fell asleep drafting the names now being suggested to us, because they make no sense in terms of the revised Barrington proposal, a sort of North Dublin and South Dublin County Council.

Let us begin with names that are meaningful. I have no problem with the Fingal and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown concept. South Dublin causes major problems. I contend South West Dublin would be far more acceptable. Let us even offer them South West Dublin to begin with and let the local authority, within 12 months or whatever is suggested, take another look at it. I am not sure I am with Deputy Gilmore in regard to his major problems with the Minister's amendment. I would interpret that as meaning that they need review the name and change it only if there are problems. I do not think it obliges any local authority, bar tabling it on an agenda, to ask whether they are happy with their name.

It says "shall".

I would interpret "shall" in that context as meaning to consider the name of the administrative county. That would mean just tabling it on the agenda of a monthly meeting. Anyway, it does not really matter; it is neither here nor there. I would not perceive that to be a major problem. Rather is it the Minister's way of offering us a palliative, saying: "Look, I am giving you this. Will you all be quite over there on the Opposition benches and stop annoying me with this?"

I think it is also an admission on the part of the Minister that the homework was not done in regard to the names being proposed in the Bill. Perhaps he has come a little bit off the road with us. I would ask him to take on board the fears and concerns we articulate here, which represent the views of the people outside this House. The Minister should make a name for himself and accept what we are saying, even if he has to refer it to the Seanad. Let us move on this issue, which is more important than it might appear. It is quite important that we get the title of the administrative areas correct. It is important that we begin from a meaningful title and, if necessary, move from there subsequently.

I think it is time somebody defended the title "South Dublin" in this debate.

Which part?

The real South Dublin or the West South Dublin?

South Dublin. The South Dublin Area Committee has been involved in the transfer of the old Belgard system to the new local authority of South Dublin, which process has been continuing for some time past. We have published many leaflets, advertisements and communications to ensure that on 1 January next the new local authority will succeed in identifying itself as a new arm of local government in the Dublin area. We have used the name "South Dublin" extensively in promoting it to constituents of that area. We have sold it as a new concept and have highlighted it on our notepaper. Indeed, it has been incorporated into the eventual design of our coat of arms, the Chief Herald having specifically garnered certain information to enable us identify with South Dublin.

There are many aspects of the matter of South Dublin that have not come before this House. It has not been explained to this House why we in South Dublin are so adamant to retain "South Dublin" as our name. I can understand other Deputies' concerns. Indeed, it is strange that it is representatives of other counties who are concerned about Dublin. But I must point out that we in South Dublin have gone through the democratic process and have considered a substantial number of options. We had everybody interested in the name of the new local authority put forward motions which were debated and put to the council for consideration. Having diligently done that, we eventually discovered through a process of elimination that the majority of members agreed with the name "South Dublin" and wished it carried through to the new local authority.

Was there a vote?

Everybody in South Dublin will be confused if it is now decided to change the name "South Dublin" to something else. Deputy Doyle referred to the seriousness of the issue. It is very serious. One would have needed to have attended that meeting in South Dublin to realise just how seriously they took it.

How many councillors were there?

People were impassioned. They were very serious about the issue and researched it in considerable depth. Some Fine Gael Members, such as Councillor Muldoon, undertook a great deal of research to bring forward old Irish names to place before us. Having done all of that, we eventually decided on our name. It may not be the best or most appropriate name, but it has now been sold to the people of South Dublin as the name of their new local authority. Belgard was considered, but it was not considered appropriate as this is a small, distinct area within the south county. The various options were eliminated and we are now left with South Dublin. We have decided on it. Were we asked to reconsider it, I am sure the same debate and result would ensue, because anybody who was interested in the name was present on the day.

And that was not many.

There were sufficient to form a quorum. If there is any suggestion by Deputy Gilmore that something was done undemocratically at that stage, that the decision of that council meeting was not valid——

I am not suggesting that at all. I just want to know how many were present.

I should like to place on the record that there was a proper quorum present, that there were sufficient numbers of people present to take the relevant decision and that anybody who wanted to absent themselves from that meeting did so voluntarily. If we cannot take decisions in the chamber without taking account of those who are not present, then the process will be rendered very difficult.

However, some difficulties obtain, which I am sure will have to be addressed again. The provisions of this Bill will enable us to do this. However, at the end of the day it is only right that the people of the proposed South County of Dublin should have the right to choose the name of their new local authority.

In this instance I am in support of Deputy Eamon Walsh, as I said in the course of our Committee Stage debate. I have no intention of supporting the amendments tabled by my colleagues on this side of the House in this one instance. I know what we went through in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown to arrive at our eventual name. I know from my colleagues in what will be South Dublin that they went through exactly the same process. I would defend to the last their right to come up with such an appalling name if that is what they want. I do not agree with the name and do not consider it to be descriptive of the area. But I imagine they found themselves between a rock and a hard place in coming up with the name, because I know various names were suggested which were considered to be inappropriate.

Part of the reason is that the area is so vast. It is not our duty to reverse the democratic decision of councillors. They are the people who live in the area. Because of the amendment put forward by the Minister they will have the opportunity to change the name. However if you start with a particular name it is very difficult to change it. I would not like to start off with that name. It would not be right for us to suggest a name. If we are to be totally descriptive the name would have to cover Dublin south, Dublin south-west and Dublin west.

It does not give me any pleasure to be unable to support my colleagues. In the interests of local democracy we should stay with the decision of the people involved.

I welcome the Minister's amendment because it shows that he is taking cognisance of what was said during the various stages of the Bill where there were differences of opinion regarding the names of some of the new council areas. I welcome the decision to give to the local council the opportunity to change the name of the administrative county within the next 12 months. I do not believe that will happen. I do not think it would be in the interests of the people of the various administrative areas that that should be done. Legislation in this area was introduced in 1985. The 1991 legislation put in place the various area committees, including the Fingal area committee and the Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown area committee. The people in the Fingal area have become accustomed to the name, which is being used in correspondence and documentation. While Deputy Doyle has acknowledged that she does not have a difficulty with the name Fingal County Council, but I take issue with her amendment suggesting that the title should be Dublin County of Fingal. She also said that the people should be identified with the Dublin area. The people in what will become the Fingal County Council area have a clear identity which not only takes on board the traditions and history of Fingal but has also taken on board the new areas of Blanchardstown and Clondalkin. We have also to look at the seals of the new councils which have been accepted. In the case of Fingal it is Flúirse talaimh is mara — riches in sea and on ground.

Riches from the rezoning in any case.

It is clear that we have an identity based on the traditions of Fingal, as well as the identities of Castleknock and Blanchardstown. We have the tradition of fishing off the coast of Fingal.

And Malahide marina.

Those involved in horticulture and farming are all included in the new Fingal County Council.

Did the Deputy include the airport?

Yes. The new Fingal County Council can look forward with great confidence and create a dynamic future for Dublin Airport as a consequence of decisions taken by this Government and the commitments made by the Labour Party prior to the general election.

The 1,000 people will have plenty of time to walk around it now.

They will acknowledge where the support came from in ensuring that Dublin Airport will remain within the new Fingal County Council area.

We should name it the Fingal Airport.

I would have no difficulty about that.

It would be no better than a county airport.

Aer Lingus will always remain our national airline.

It is a bit like Windscale and Sellafield.

On the basis of the decisions taken by this Government we can look forward with confidence to the future of the airline. I am delighted that the airport is within the new Fingal County Council area. It is very important to put the names before the general public. Perhaps we could have a motor registration code for the Fingal County Council area.

FG would be the letters.

It makes no difference.

We will agree to FG.

We will probably make more use of it than some of the names that have been used by some other parties of late. Having said that, there would be merit in a separate registration code for the new county council areas.

I would ask Deputies to look favourably on the Minister's amendment. I hope it will not be necessary for the public representatives of the area to implement a change. The suggestion to change the name of Fingal County Council to the Dublin Council of Fingal is inappropriate and is not in the interest of the new Fingal County Council. It would not have the support of the people who live in that area. I seek support for the Minister's amendment.

The discussion gives an indication of the problem which has existed from the start in the division of Dublin into the various counties. There is a certain historic resonance, as Deputy Sean Ryan has so eloquently expressed, in the area of Fingal, this land of the "fair-haired foreigner", which was one of the first areas of the old English invaders. Fingal has a long resonance in the history of Dublin; so too has the name "Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown". In many respects the problem is most noticeable in "South Dublin"— hence the basis of Deputy Gilmore's amendment in relation to South-West Dublin. I accept what my colleague, Deputy Eamonn Walsh — who incidentally is chairperson of the South Dublin area — has said on the work that has been done to research the area of South Dublin but there can be no doubt that the ambience of such areas which encompass great historic settlements such as Clondalkin, Tallaght and parts of Lucan is not reflected adequately in the title. It may well be that "South Dublin" is a name that will logically be accepted from this period onwards but that remains to be seen.

The basic point is that responsibility for naming the area must rest with the people and their representatives. I hope that within a year historical societies in the general area of Tallaght and Clondalkin will consider the debate in this House and make representations on the final decision, if indeed there has to be a final decision, on the name of the new county council.

I believe that major parts of the Dublin region should have their own council and this Bill does not address that aspect of the issue. However, I am happy that under the proposed name we do have Dublin in the title.

(Wexford): We certainly have had a wide-ranging overview of Dublin. I suppose for the first time ever a procedure involving public consultation is set out in section 9 for the new county councils to promote a change in the name of their counties. This is as it should be because it is a local issue best decided by local people. Furthermore the ministerial amendment No. 13 obliges the new county councils to consider the question of their names during 1994 without prejudice to anything they might decide to do in future years. This will ensure that the points raised in this debate will be considered by the local authorities themselves in the first year of their operation.

Amendment No. 12 is consequential on amendment No. 13 and makes the consideration of the county name a reserve function. It would, of course, be open to the new county councils to sound out public opinion as to the county name by way of surveys or other means under powers conferred by the Local Government Act, 1991. As has been stated by different speakers, there were certainly many different viewpoints. The local authorities themselves considered the question of the name of the new counties and none of the area committees made proposals to change the name of the new council. Neither did Dublin County Council or Dún Laoghaire Corporation do so in their formal submissions to the Minister on the reorganisation report. This is a matter that should be left to the councils themselves and the Bill does that. I do not think it is a matter for the national parliament to intervene and impose solutions on local democracy.

If the national parliament is not intervening and imposing a solution on the local community why is any name included in the Bill? If the names of the county councils are written into the legislation which is being enacted through the Oireachtas it is being imposed, albeit with the saver that the county councils themselves can go through the exercise of consulting the public and trying to come to a conclusion on the issue.

I agree very much with Deputy Broughan's criticism of the format we eventually arrived at for the reorganisation of local government in Dublin. They very much echo the criticisms I made during the passage of the 1991 legislation through the House. I argued that it would be better if the system of local government was organised around identifiable areas, communities with which people could identify, for example, having local authorities the size of the existing Dún Laoghaire Borough Corporation. I think people could identify with councils such as the Tallaght council, Blanchardstown council and other such area councils. In my opinion it was possible to develop in Dublin a network of ten to 12 such councils with a greater Dublin council which would pull the whole lot together. That is the way we should have gone but it was not organised in that way in 1991 when the issue was decided by the Oireachtas and we now have to live with that fact and to work within it now.

The enthusiasm I spoke about earlier within the three new county councils for getting on with the job stems more from the frustration with the existing set-up in Dublin County Council than from any sense of belief that the new system is the most perfect solution to be adopted. Nevertheless there is a pragmatic sense that the system should be worked but the fact that we are having a debate on the names supports very strongly the points Deputy Broughan was making that the new bodies lack an identity. I accept that there is a very strong sense of identify in the Fingal area, as Deputy Ryan says, but I am not so sure if that is shared entirely by the people who live out in Blanchardstown whose area will become part of this new county council and I do not know whether they identify themselves as Fingalians.

Because there is a Dáil constituency called Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown we have a concept that can be built on, but it is no more than that because Rathdown was a barony which stretched down into north Wicklow and the new area does not exactly correspond with the existing Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown boundaries. I wish to put the following scenario to the Minister to see how he proposes to resolve the problem. It is proposed in ministerial amendment No. 13 that the council of a county established by section 11:

...shall, not later than one year after the establishment day consider the question of the name of its administrative county.".

That will appear at some stage on the agenda of a meeting of the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council. I recall very distinctly the discussions we had over several meetings in the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown area committee on the name of the new county. We did not have a division but arrived at a consensus that as Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown was the name of the legislation and was the name for the district committee prior to that, it was a case of making do but in the course of the discussion there was a very serious proposal tabled that the name of the county council should be "South County Dublin". There was a very strong body of opinion on the area committee that this should be the name of the new county council. It was suggested that we should try to tic-tac with the county council that officially is going to be called the South Dublin County Council to elicit their views. The Minister has outlined that we will go back to the people to consult them on their views and have people writing in making submissions and so on. It may well happen that when this comes back on the agenda the citizens and members of what is now to be called Dún Laoghaire/Rathdown council will conclude that the name of that county council should be the South County Dublin County Council. What will the Minister do then? The matter should be decided by the Oireachtas to avoid confusion. My proposition is not far-fetched. I genuinely believe that when this appears on the agenda, it is likely to generate confusion.

Deputy Eamon Walsh tells us that the people in what will be called the South Dublin County Council are getting used to the idea. However, the people of Dún Laoghaire Rathdown and the people who live in what is generally termed south County Dublin have not come to terms with this and, indeed, many of them have not heard of the idea that what is west now in the county will now be called south county.

The Deputy should have promoted his new council.

We did promote it. It is quite possible that this dilemma will arise. The Minister, with all the powers he is reserving to make regulations and give orders and directions has decided that far from allowing the people of County Dublin, Dún Laoghaire/ Rathdown or South Dublin or Fingal to decide on the names of these county councils, he will have a man from Tipperary and a man from Wexford deciding it. That is not logical democracy.

They will not let us decide on the name of our county council in Wexford.

Question put: "That the words proposed to be deleted stand"
The Dáil divided: Tá, 43; Nil, 28.

  • Ahern, Dermot.
  • Ahern, Michael.
  • Aylward, Liam.
  • Bree, Declan.
  • Brennan, Matt.
  • Broughan, Tommy.
  • Browne, John (Wexford).
  • Byrne, Hugh.
  • Coughlan, Mary.
  • Cowen, Brian.
  • Ellis, John.
  • Ferris, Michael.
  • Fitzgerald, Brian.
  • Flood, Chris.
  • Foley, Denis.
  • Gallagher, Pat the Cope.
  • Haughey, Seán.
  • Hilliard, Colm M.
  • Hughes, Séamus.
  • Hyland, Liam.
  • Jacob, Joe.
  • Kavanagh, Liam.
  • Kenny, Seán.
  • Killeen, Tony.
  • Lawlor, Liam.
  • Leonard, Jimmy.
  • McDaid, James.
  • Moffatt, Tom.
  • Moynihan, Donal.
  • Moynihan-Cronin, Breeda.
  • Mulvihill, John.
  • Ó Cuív, Eamon.
  • O'Hanlon, Rory.
  • O'Keeffe, Batt.
  • O'Leary, John.
  • O'Shea, Brian.
  • O'Sullivan, Toddy.
  • Power, Seán.
  • Ryan, Seán.
  • Smith, Brendan.
  • Stagg, Eamon.
  • Walsh, Eamon.
  • Woods, Michael.

Níl

  • Ahearn, Theresa.
  • Allen, Bernard.
  • Barrett, Seán.
  • Bradford, Paul.
  • Browne, John (Carlow-Kilkenny).
  • Bruton, John.
  • Carey, Donal.
  • Crawford, Seymour.
  • Currie, Austin.
  • Deenihan, Jimmy.
  • Doyle, Avril.
  • Dukes, Alan M.
  • Durkan, Bernard J.
  • Finucane, Michael.
  • Fitzgerald, Frances.
  • Flanagan, Charles.
  • Gilmore, Eamon.
  • Gregory, Tony.
  • Kenny, Enda.
  • McCormack, Pádraic.
  • McGahon, Brendan.
  • McGinley, Dinny.
  • McGrath, Paul.
  • Mitchell, Jim.
  • Nealon, Ted.
  • Noonan, Michael.
  • O'Keeffe, Jim.
  • Sheehan, P.J.
Tellers: Tá, Deputies Pat the Cope Gallagher and Ferris; Níl, Deputies Gilmore and E. Kenny.
Question declared carried.
Amendment declared lost.
Debate adjourned.