Since the Order of Business was made this morning I understand that a message has been received from the Dáil seeking the concurrence of this House in sending the Building Control Bill, 1984 to the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Legislation. It is a matter of extreme regret that if the Dáil wished this Bill to go to that committee over the summer period it did not send a message to this House at an earlier date. Nevertheless, having expressed that degree of displeasure which I am sure is shared by other Senators, we have to face the fact that the message has arrived and we have to decide how to deal with it. I have consulted with the main Opposition group and they very kindly indicated that they have no objection to this motion being taken today. Accordingly I move:
"That the Order of Business be altered by the addition of item 2 (a) which is a message from the Dáil seeking concurrence in relation to the reference of the Building Control Bill to the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Legislation and that that item be taken between item Nos. 2 and 3.
It should be made clear that the House, in discussing that resolution, is discussing the principle of the Bill. It is, in effect, a Second Stage discussion and therefore the House is being asked to take Second Stage at very short notice. There is possibly an hour's debate left on this Bill. So there would be several hours then before 6 p.m. and I do not anticipate that the bilateral aid programme being taken at 7 p.m. will go on until 10 p.m. So it should be possible to have several hours of debate on the principle of the Bill if that is required.
It is with great regret that I propose this change to the Order of Business. It is not good procedure and it can only be done because of the understanding of the Opposition. Perhaps in this respect their understanding and sympathy may be greater than mine.