Not being satisfied with the reply given to my question yesterday regarding the division of the estates of Mr. Nicko Green and the Baker Estate, Co. Tipperary, I gave notice to raise the matter on the adjournment. I asked the Minister for Lands and Fisheries if he will state (a) when it is intended to divide the estates of Mr. Nicko Green, Lattin, Co. Tipperary, and (b) the Baker Estate, Ballinard, Co. Tipperary.
Mr. Roddy replied: "A scheme for the division of the following lands is at present in the course of preparation, but the Land Commission are not in a position to state when they will be divided:—
"Allen Baker Estate—Ballinard, 201a. 0r. 0p. Ballinglana, 89a. 0r. 0p. Illaunmeen, 15a. 0r. 0p.
"Estate of Nicholas Green—Shronell, 50a. 1r. 27p. Ballynadruckilly, 50a. 2r. 0p.
"If the Deputy refers to the lands of Lattin East, the property of Nicholas J. Green, these lands were also included in the provisional list, but the owner having objected to their inclusion therein, and also to the inclusion of the lands of Ballinagleragh, the Land Commission allowed his objection as regards Lattin East and disallowed it as regards Ballinagleragh. The price of the lands of Ballinagleragh was fixed and published in accordance with the Land Act of 1923, and on the owner's appeal it transpired that the tenure under which Nicholas Green holds both the lands of Lattin East and Ballinagleragh constitutes him a tenant within the meaning of the Land Act, 1923, and he has now been returned to the Land Commission as a tenant of these lands on the estate of Captain Charles Moore. These lands will be dealt with in connection with the sale of the Moore estate under the Act of 1923."
I would like if the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Lands and Fisheries would state the present state of the negotiations between the Irish Land Commission and Mr. Nicko J. Green, regarding the lands of Ballinagleragh and Lattin East, Co. Tipperary, 390 acres of which were gazetted for acquisition nearly three years ago. I would also like if the Minister in his reply would answer the following questions: How much of this land was Mr. Green permitted to retain on appeal; how much is still the subject of investigation, what price was offered for it, and whether a price has yet been definitely fixed; and, if so, what is the price; further, what objections, if any, were raised by Mr. Green at the hearing before the Land Commission? Are the Land Commission aware that on these lands, to the acquisition of which objection was taken, upwards of 60 acres of meadowing lay uncut last year, that only two men are employed on 670 acres—Mr. Nicko Green's 550 acres and his uncle's 120 acres—all farmed by Mr. Nicko Green as a non-resident ranch? Is the Parliamentary Secretary aware that part of the lands not acquired are let on the eleven months system, and that most of the land is grazed by the cattle of another rancher, who has extensive tracts of land all over the south, and who, to escape seizure of these cattle for bank debts, removed them from the Lattin lands during the night?
This ranch is surrounded by congests, unemployment is rife in the district and eighteen or twenty families in Lattin village have no space for vegetables or grass for goats, and many must go three or four miles for milk, while small farmers take meadowing two or three miles away. Are the Irish Land Commission satisfied that the spirit and the letter of the 1923 Act were observed in dealing with these ranches, and, if so, will they furnish the reports of their own inspectors and of the hearing of the objections by the Land Commissioners?
With regard to the property of his uncle, I would like to know what price was offered by the Irish Land Commission for the 100 statute acres of the lands of Shronell and Ballynadruckilly, near Lattin. Will the Parliamentary Secretary also state what was the price fixed on appeal by the Judicial Commissioner, and at what date was that price fixed? I would also like to know whether a large quantity of ash and other valuable timber was sold off the lands of Shronell after the offer made by the Land Commission; whether this timber was cut down after the Judicial Commissioners' assessor had appeared on the lands for valuation; what was the date on which the assessor visited the lands, and did Mr. Green furnish a return of the value of the timber sold, and when is it proposed to divide these lands?
I ask the Parliamentary Secretary also to furnish the particulars regarding the estate of Mr. Alan Baker, veterinary surgeon. These lands are situated at Ballinard and Ballinglana, Baronv of Clanwilliam, Co. Tipperary. What was the price offered by the Land Commission for the 305 statute acres comprised in the estate; what was the price fixed on appeal by the Judicial Commissioner, and the date at which it was fixed? Will the Parliamentary Secretary explain the cause of the prolonged delay in dividing this estate, surrounded as it is by a large number of uneconomic holders, many of them former tenants on the estate? In connection with this estate, I would also like to know when the Land Commission expect to be in a position to divide it. Since the price was first offered a very big quantity of timber has been cut down and sold, and I would like to know whether the Land Commission are aware of that. I hope the Parliamentary Secretary will state whether the Land Commission are aware that a big part of these lands is being meadowed for a number of years, that 89 acres were meadowed last year, and that the same ground, with about 25 additional acres, is meadowed this year, and whether they believe this continuous meadowing of dry land, not of the very best class, is likely to cause serious deterioration in its value to incoming tenants. Also will the Parliamentary Secretary state whether the high price fixed on appeal in this case will not have the effect, even if it is not so intended, of bringing land division into disrepute, or of stopping it altogether? It is an absolute scandal the way the Irish Land Commission are treating this area in these matters.