asked the Minister for Local Government if he will sanction payment of a sum of £50 unanimously passed by the Joint Committee of Management of Mullingar Asylum to Christopher Crowley, who resigned his position after 36 years' service through ill-health, whether similar gratuities have been sanctioned recently under the same circumstances to the late head attendant and head nurse.

There is no statutory authority under which a gratuity could be granted to Attendant Christopher Crowley on retirement in addition to the pension which the Joint Committee awarded him. The gratuities granted in similar circumstances in the year 1919 and 1920 were not sanctioned, and should not have been paid. I am making further inquiries into the position as regards these payments.