In Committee on Finance. - Vote 65—Army Pensions.

I move:—

Go ndeontar suim ná raghaidh thar £136,216 chun slánuithe na suime is gá chun íoctha an Mhuirir a thiocfidh chun bheith iníoctha i rith na bliana dar críoch an 31adh lá de Mhárta, 1931, chun Pinsin Chréachta agus Mhí-abaltachta, Pinsin Fhear Pósta, Liúnaisí agus Aiscí (Uimh. 26 de 1923 agus Uimh. 12 de 1927) agus chun síntiúisí agus costaisí iolardha ina dtaobh san agus chun Pinsin Seirbhíse Mileata D'íoe (Uimh. 48 de 1924).

That a sum not exceeding £136,216 be granted to complete the sum necessary to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1931, for Wounds and Disability Pensions, Married Pensions, Allowances and Gratuities (No. 26 of 1923 and No. 12 of 1927) and for sundry contributions and expenses in respect thereof and to pay Military Service Pensions (No. 48 of 1924).

This matter has also been very exhaustively discussed this year on the Act that I introduced earlier in the year. The Estimate is £45,000 below that of last year. That is due to the fact that as we come to the end of the consideration of the cases presented for pensions it becomes less necessary to make provision for arrears. Under the Army Pensions Acts of 1923 and 1927, almost all the claims have now been heard, with the exception of certain claims that require very protracted investigation, and, as Deputies know, the claims under the Military Service Pensions Act of 1924 ceased to be heard some two and a half years ago.

We are against this Vote of £208,000. We think it is a terrible thing that a country in our present state should be asked to give such a sum of money to able-bodied young men and for services that the people do not know were rendered. We look upon the whole Army Pensions Vote as being expended, to a large extent, purely for political graft, and for that reason we are going to vote against it.

When Deputy Aiken says that he looks upon this whole Vote as pure political graft, all I can say is that I have had many applications from Fianna Fáil representatives in favour certainly of one aspect of this Vote.

I am sure that the Minister has had applications for wounds pensions or for pensions for the dependents of people who were killed during the Black and Tan war. We definitely stand for giving pensions to the dependents of people who were killed, and also to people who were wounded, in the Free State Army and out of it.

The Deputy should be more explicit.

On a point of order. I understand that in the discussions on the Estimates Deputies are not allowed to advocate legislation. Is it not a fact that all these pensions are the result of legislation, that they are practically statutory pensions, and is Deputy Aiken entitled to advocate legislation to rescind these pensions after legislation has been passed granting them?

He deprecated legislation.

Question put.
The Committee divided: Tá, 69; Níl, 48.

  • Aird, William P.
  • Alton, Ernest Henry.
  • Beckett, James Walter.
  • Bennett, George Cecil.
  • Blythe, Ernest.
  • Bourke, Séamus A.
  • Brodrick, Seán.
  • Byrne, John Joseph.
  • Carey, Edmund.
  • Cole, John James.
  • Collins-O'Driscoll, Mrs. Margt.
  • Conlon, Martin.
  • Craig, Sir James.
  • Crowley, James.
  • Daly, John.
  • Davis, Michael.
  • De Loughrey, Peter.
  • Doherty, Eugene.
  • Dolan, James N.
  • Doyle, Peadar Seán.
  • Duggan, Edmund John.
  • Dwyer, James.
  • Egan, Barry M.
  • Esmonde, Osmond Thos. Grattan.
  • Fitzgerald, Desmond.
  • Fitzgerald-Kenney, James.
  • Good, John.
  • O'Leary, Daniel.
  • O'Mahony, Dermot Gun.
  • O'Reilly, John J.
  • O'Sullivan, Gearóid.
  • O'Sullivan, John Marcus.
  • Reynolds, Patrick.
  • Rice, Vincent.
  • Roddy, Martin.
  • Gorey, Denis J.
  • Haslett, Alexander.
  • Hassett, John J.
  • Heffernan, Michael R.
  • Hennessy, Thomas.
  • Hennigan, John.
  • Henry, Mark.
  • Hogan, Patrick (Galway).
  • Holohan, Richard.
  • Jordan, Michael.
  • Kelly, Patrick Michael.
  • Keogh, Myles.
  • Law, Hugh Alexander.
  • Lynch, Finian.
  • Mathews, Arthur Patrick.
  • McDonogh, Martin.
  • McFadden, Michael Og.
  • McGilligan, Patrick.
  • Mongan, Joseph W.
  • Mulcahy, Richard.
  • Murphy, James E.
  • Nally, Martin Michael.
  • Nolan, John Thomas.
  • O'Connell, Richard.
  • O'Connor, Bartholomew.
  • O'Donovan, Timothy Joseph.
  • O'Higgins, Thomas.
  • Sheehy, Timothy (West Cork).
  • Thrift, William Edward.
  • Tierney, Michael.
  • Vaughan, Daniel.
  • White, Vincent Joseph.
  • Wolfe, George.
  • Wolfe, Jasper Travers.

Níl

  • Aiken, Frank.
  • Allen, Denis.
  • Blaney, Neal.
  • Boland, Patrick.
  • Bourke, Daniel.
  • Brady, Seán.
  • Buckley, Daniel.
  • Carney, Frank.
  • Carty, Frank.
  • Cassidy, Archie J.
  • Clancy, Patrick.
  • Clery, Michael.
  • Colbert, James.
  • Cooney, Eamon.
  • Corkery, Dan.
  • Corish, Richard.
  • Corry, Martin John.
  • Crowley, Fred. Hugh.
  • Crowley, Tadhg.
  • Derrig, Thomas.
  • Fahy, Frank.
  • Flinn, Hugo.
  • Fogarty, Andrew.
  • Gorry, Patrick J.
  • Goulding, John.
  • Hayes, Seán.
  • Houlihan, Patrick.
  • Jordan, Stephen.
  • Kent, William R.
  • Killilea, Mark.
  • Kilroy, Michael.
  • Lemass, Seán F.
  • Little, Patrick John.
  • Maguire, Ben.
  • McEllistrim, Thomas.
  • Moore, Séamus.
  • Mullins, Thomas.
  • O'Connell, Thomas J.
  • O'Kelly, Seán T.
  • O'Reilly, Matthew.
  • O'Reilly, Thomas.
  • Powell, Thomas P.
  • Ryan, James.
  • Sexton, Martin.
  • Sheehy, Timothy (Tipp.).
  • Tubridy, John.
  • Walsh, Richard.
  • Ward, Francis C.
Tellers: Tá, Deputies Duggan and P. Doyle; Níl: Deputies Allen and Killilea.
Motion declared carried.