Order of Business

It is proposed to take No. 12a, motion re leave to introduce Supplementary Estimate - Vote 38, and No. 12b, motion re referral of Supplementary Estimate - Vote 38 to the select sub-committee. It is proposed, notwithstanding anything in Standing Orders, that No. 12a shall be decided without debate, and subject to the agreement of No. 12a, No. 12b, motion re referral to select sub-committee, shall be decided without debate and any divisions demanded thereon shall be taken forthwith.

It is also proposed that as all other business listed for today has already been brought to a conclusion, the sitting shall be suspended on the conclusion of No. 12b until 2 p.m. and Topical Issue matters shall be taken at that time.

Is the proposal for dealing with Nos. 12a, motion re leave to introduce Supplementary Estimate - Vote 38, and 12b, motion re referral of Supplementary Estimate Vote 38 to select sub-committee agreed to? Agreed. It is the proposal for dealing suspension of the sitting agreed to?

It is not agreed.

Is it the Deputy who is going to speak on behalf of his party?

We were here until 11 p.m. last night.

Surely the Whip has other legislation that can be introduced today. It is not acceptable that the business for today will be collapsed because we finished it yesterday. Is there no other pressing legislation that the Government can introduce today?

We will probably be sitting until all hours next week.

There is the legislation providing for a one-year term for bankruptcy.

The House is sitting late next week and additional days have been added to the schedule, yet the business for today will be collapsed at 2 p.m. because the Whip could not be bothered finding a Minister to come into the Chamber to discuss some pressing legislation. We have had guillotine after guillotine imposed and now today we have no business.

We were here until 11 p.m. last night.

There must be legislation on the priority list that the Government can bring in today.

We need a new Whip.

Go raibh maith agat. I call Deputy Troy.

I agree with the previous speaker. It is unbelievable to think that we are closing the House early today due to the absence of legislation to be debated. Where is the bankruptcy legislation that was published earlier this week and agreed by Cabinet? Where is the schools admissions policy legislation that was published a number of weeks ago, legislation which has direct and real consequences on the lives of the people who we represent here on a daily basis. The previous speaker is right, this is because of the ineptitude and the lack of co-ordination by the Government Chief Whip-----

And lack of respect.

-----who does not want to organise in conjunction with the other Whips of this House.

(Interruptions).

I can assure the Chief Whip that if his office wants to telephone our Whip's office that we would be more than willing to come in here and debate some of the serious issues which need to be debated here today.

Thank you, Deputy.

It is unbelievable to think that we are going to close this House due to the lack of debate and lack of legislation coming to the House.

You were not even in the House to debate-----

It is another sign of spin over substance.

(Interruptions).

The Minister will now reply.

The Government is great on spin but very poor on delivery and very poor on substance.

Thank you, Deputy.

Donie will not be disappointed. Did he give the Deputy that script this morning?

We will now hear the Minister's reply.

The Deputies are well aware that there was legislation ordered for this House this morning. The climate change legislation finished earlier than expected, presumably because there were no speakers. Deputy Troy was not here to make his big points about climate change on that occasion.

Perhaps he was leaving that to somebody else to do but he was not here. There were some colleagues here for that debate and it finished before it was expected that it would.

We know it finished before it was expected that it would.

Then there was the Dublin Docklands legislation debated before the House and there was nobody here from the Opposition in respect of it.

Where were they?

There was nobody.

(Interruptions).

The Minister did not see me on the monitor. I was sitting right here.

This is legislation that the Deputy claims-----

Withdraw that remark.

-----has direct and real consequences-----

Where are the Bills to which the Minister referred?

Deputy Cowen, resume your seat.

The Deputy's performance is not persuading anybody.

The Minister should withdraw that lie.

This is the legislation, the docklands legislation, that the Deputy tells us is of direct and real consequences.

I was here; is the Minister trying to say I was not here?

I am not talking to you; I am talking to the-----

Do not make an allegation that you cannot stand over.

This is legislation that Deputy Troy claims is of direct and real consequences to the people he represents, but neither he nor any of his colleagues could be bothered to be here to debate it.

Members of my party were here.

Let him not say that the Government is not ready to debate this legislation. Child care legislation was debated here as well.

A Leas-Cheann Comhairle------

The Government stands ready to debate these issues with the Opposition but if there is nobody on that side of the House, there is not much we can do.

A Leas-Cheann Comhairle, on a point of order-----

Is it a point of order? I will call the Deputy in a moment.

If it is a point of order, I want the Deputy to be brief and to be in order.

On a point of order, I attended a committee meeting this morning with the Minister's colleague at which we dealt with an Estimate. That is the reason I was not here, but my party was represented here. It is a matter of fact that my party was represented here. The Minister should withdraw the remark he made from the record of the House, and the Whip would need to withdraw the remark. Our party was represented here. We are not discussing the debate on the legislation, the legislation has been dealt with. That is acceptable, Minister-----

More excuses.

(Interruptions).

-----but there is further legislation that could be dealt with.

Thank you, Deputy.

There is no reason the House should adjourn early today when there is so much more legislation that could be dealt with.

We have got that point. I must call another Deputy. Deputy McLellan has a point of order.

I want to point out to the Minister that I was here to debate the Child Care (Amendment) Bill with the Minister and I want him to withdraw that remark.

Deputy O'Brien has a point of order.

On a point of order, the fact that the legislation went through goes to prove that there was no need to guillotine the debate on the legislation yesterday.

That is another issue.

Which was a proposal.

That was a proposal.

You were not even here to debate it.

Our party was represented.

I do not know if your Christmas night out is tonight and you want to have a half day.

Let us not get into that.

You were not even here to debate it.

There is serious legislation to come before this House and you want to go home.

Deputy O'Brien, please, I have to put the question.

My party colleagues were here for the debate. The Minister of State should have been in here this morning and organising a revised Order of Business, instead of taking a half day.

(Interruptions).

You were not here.

Question put: "That the proposal for dealing with the suspension of the sitting be agreed to."
The Dáil divided: Tá, 52; Níl, 33.

  • Breen, Pat.
  • Butler, Ray.
  • Buttimer, Jerry.
  • Byrne, Catherine.
  • Byrne, Eric.
  • Carey, Joe.
  • Coffey, Paudie.
  • Conaghan, Michael
  • Conway, Ciara.
  • Coonan, Noel.
  • Corcoran Kennedy, Marcella.
  • Costello, Joe.
  • Deasy, John.
  • Deenihan, Jimmy.
  • Deering, Pat.
  • Dowds, Robert.
  • Durkan, Bernard J.
  • Ferris, Anne.
  • Griffin, Brendan.
  • Hannigan, Dominic.
  • Harrington, Noel.
  • Harris, Simon.
  • Heydon, Martin.
  • Howlin, Brendan.
  • Humphreys, Kevin.
  • Keating, Derek.
  • Kehoe, Paul.
  • Kelly, Alan.
  • Kenny, Seán.
  • Kyne, Seán.
  • Lawlor, Anthony.
  • Lyons, John.
  • McEntee, Helen.
  • McGinley, Dinny.
  • Mitchell O'Connor, Mary.
  • Mulherin, Michelle.
  • Neville, Dan.
  • Nolan, Derek.
  • Ó Ríordáin, Aodhán.
  • O'Donnell, Kieran.
  • O'Donovan, Patrick.
  • O'Dowd, Fergus.
  • O'Sullivan, Jan.
  • Phelan, Ann.
  • Phelan, John Paul.
  • Rabbitte, Pat.
  • Reilly, James.
  • Ryan, Brendan.
  • Stagg, Emmet.
  • Twomey, Liam.
  • Wall, Jack.
  • White, Alex.

Níl

  • Aylward, Bobby.
  • Boyd Barrett, Richard.
  • Broughan, Thomas P.
  • Collins, Joan.
  • Collins, Niall.
  • Colreavy, Michael.
  • Cowen, Barry.
  • Daly, Clare.
  • Ellis, Dessie.
  • Fitzmaurice, Michael.
  • Flanagan, Terence.
  • Halligan, John.
  • Healy, Seamus.
  • Higgins, Joe.
  • Kelleher, Billy.
  • Mac Lochlainn, Pádraig.
  • McConalogue, Charlie.
  • McDonald, Mary Lou.
  • McGrath, Finian.
  • McGrath, Mattie.
  • McLellan, Sandra.
  • Mathews, Peter.
  • Moynihan, Michael.
  • Murphy, Catherine.
  • Murphy, Paul.
  • Ó Cuív, Éamon.
  • Ó Snodaigh, Aengus.
  • O'Brien, Jonathan.
  • Pringle, Thomas.
  • Ross, Shane.
  • Smith, Brendan.
  • Stanley, Brian.
  • Troy, Robert.
Tellers: Tá, Deputies Emmet Stagg and Paul Kehoe; Níl, Deputies Jonathan O'Brien and Robert Troy.
Question declared carried.