CEISTEANNA—QUESTIONS. ORAL ANSWERS. - ANNUITIES PAYABLE BY RE-INSTATED EVICTED TENANTS.

asked the Minister for Agriculture whether his attention has been called to the excessive amounts which evicted tenants and those who got new farms as migrants in Galway County are called upon to pay as annuities; whether it would be possible, by extension of time for repayment to the State of the purchase money, or otherwise, to reduce the annuities payable by such land-holders, so as to afford them relief equal to that obtained by neighbouring land-holders.

Mr. HOGAN

It is presumed that the Question has reference to re-instated evicted tenants and migrants on the Clanricarde estate. Statements of the same nature as those contained in the Question have been made, supported by comparison with the annuities paid by ordinary non-evicted occupiers on the same estate. It is true that the latter are generally lower than the former but for the reason that the comparison takes no account of various Free Grants, amounting to about £8,000, made by the Land Commission to the re-instated tenants for buildings, fencing, drainage, etc. If these Free Grants are taken into consideration, representing as they do about seven years' purchase of the rental of the restored evicted tenants, it would mean that the latter were sold their holdings at a lesser number of years' purchase than the ordinary occupying tenants with whom comparison has been made.

It may be added that since the settlement of these evicted tenants, several of them have sold their occupation interests in the holdings and have obtained very high prices therefor.

There can be no question whatever of re-opening completed sales.