Financial Resolution No. 10—Customs.

I move:—

(1) That there shall be charged, levied, and paid on every of the articles mentioned in the second column of the Schedule to this Resolution imported into Saorstát Eireann on or after the 16th day of May, 1935, a customs duty at the rate stated in the third column of the said Schedule opposite the mention of the article in the said second column.

(2) That where a percentage is stated in the third column of the Schedule to this Resolution opposite the mention of any article in the second column of that Schedule, such statement shall be construed as meaning a rate of duty equal to that percentage of the value of such article.

(3) It is hereby declared that it is expedient in the public interest that this Resolution shall have statutory effect under the provisions of the Provisional Collection of Taxes Act, 1927 (No. 7 of 1927).

SCHEDULE.

PART I.

Ref. No.

Description of Article Liable to Duty

Rate of Duty

1

Asphalt, bitumen, pitch, and tar of all kinds, whether imported in crude form or after treatment or preparation, and also mixtures of any two or more of those substances.

Per cwt.3d.

2

Any article (not otherwise liable to duty) which, in the opinion of the Revenue Commissioners, is linoleum.

Per sq. yard6d.

3

Any article (not otherwise liable to duty) which, in the opinion of the Revenue Commissioners, is oilcloth.

Per sq. yard2d.

4

Articles made wholly or mainly of asbestos.

Per cwt.1/-

5

Starch and dextrin.

Per cwt.3/-

6

Rice, rice flour, and rice meal.

Per cwt.2/-

7

Tiles and slabs of all kinds made wholly or partly of clay, earthen-ware, or cement, and not otherwise liable to duty.

Per cwt.5/-

8

Roofing slates of all kinds.

Per cwt.5/-

9

(a) Wool;

Per cental of

(b) wool waste, other than flock.

100 lbs.10/-

10

Glazed pipes made wholly or mainly of clay or earthenware, and glazed connections (for pipes of any kind) made wholly or mainly of clay or earthenware.

Per cwt.9d.

11

Grapes.

Per lb.1d.

12

Dried Peas.

Per lb.½d.

PART II.

13

Glass of all kinds imported in sheets or strips, whether flat or bent, curved or otherwise shaped.

10%

14

Glassware (not otherwise liable to duty and not containing any goods at importation) which, in the opinion of the Revenue Commissioners, is suitable for domestic or household use or ornament.

10%

15

Paper without any matter or design printed thereon.

5%

16

Paper which has a design or pattern printed thereon and is, in the opinion of the Revenue Commissioners, primarily suitable for use as wall-paper.

5%

17

Empty glass bottles and empty glass jars not otherwise liable to duty, excluding glass bottles and jars which, in the opinion of the Revenue Commissioners, are primarily suitable for laboratory use.

10%

This Resolution imposes various import duties, some of them specific and some ad valorem. Ad valorem duties are being imposed in those cases where there are wide ranges of qualities and consequent differences in prices as regards the articles affected. In such cases the incidence of a specific duty would be inequitable. The articles are set out in the Schedule.

Are these revenue duties and does the Minister think it a desirable thing when he desires to raid the Road Tax Fund to do it through imposing taxes on asphalt?

Look at the amount.

Three pence per cwt. Why not take the money out of the Road Fund? Does the Minister think it a very desirable thing to levy 2/- per cwt. on rice? Rice is a commodity that is used almost exclusively by people in modest circumstances. It is a valuable food. The Minister taxes bread, tea, sugar, practically everything that the people of this country must consume, and now he is putting a tax on rice. Why is the Minister putting a tax on dried peas?

They are packed here.

I understood that these duties are for revenue purposes. The Minister is going to create an industry in this country.

They are being grown in Limerick.

A tariff of 1/2d. per lb. is not going to protect peas.

Is the Deputy pleading for a higher tariff?

The Minister is in fact putting a revenue tariff on dried peas, a food that is consumed almost exclusively by people of very modest means.

I disagree.

No person who dines luxuriously consumes dried peas. They have to be steeped for 24 hours before they can be used at all.

I presume that people who dine luxuriously eat asparagus, but many well-to-do people at this season particularly, do use dried peas.

I object most strongly to the imposition of any further taxes on the food of the poorest classes of the community who are already suffering very severely from the lunacy of the present Government and I propose to divide the House on the Resolution.

I would like to get some reason from the Minister for Schedule Part I, reference 1—Asphalt, bitumen, pitch, and tar of all kinds. What is the object of putting a tariff on these?

To get money.

I am certainly a protectionist, but I do not want to kill the idea of protection by tariffs for revenue purposes. It is the very antithesis of national protection. The Minister knows that tar enters into all road making except concrete roads. I notice that the Minister for Industry and Commerce put 5/- a ton on cement a couple of days ago. Where is the need for that? Local authorities are the principal users of these commodities that the Minister proposes to tax.

It is a raid on the Road Fund in a round about way.

Why not be straight about it and say we will reduce the grants to local authorities?

For the simple reason that he has not the guts to do it.

The Minister knows it is murdering protection to put tariffs for revenue purposes on commodities that are required here and that we cannot produce ourselves.

May I remind the Deputy that there is a considerable number of these Resolutions to be got through?

You will get them all before 10.30 to-night.

Unfortunately, I have other arrangements to-night and——

And, unfortunately, you happen to be Minister for Finance. It is unfortunate for the Saorstát, from every point of view.

In that case, I am entitled to the courtesy previously extended to the Minister for Finance before Deputy Dillon entered this House. On previous occasions these Resolutions were not debated in this way: a general Resolution was taken and the debate was adjourned on the general Resolution. There was a general discussion first and there was a detailed discussion on the Report Stage of the Resolutions.

When the Minister's Chief Whip was asked to do that he said he would do nothing of the kind; he would do nothing to meet us. The Chief Whip was offered an adjournment immediately after the Budget speech by the Minister.

The Minister is not suggesting that we are prevented by custom from dividing on this Resolution?

I think the Minister will admit, so far as this side of the House is concerned, that the discussion is confined to the minimum.

I agree. I am merely pointing out to Deputy Belton that at this stage it would be impossible to discuss the Resolution in detail.

I quite agree that we should do no more than ask questions.

I only wanted to refer to a few passing points.

If every Deputy avails himself of that, then I am afraid we cannot have the Resolutions to-night.

If every Deputy spoke on any Bill as long as a half-dozen, then we would have only one Bill in the year. It strikes me as peculiar that rice flour should be taxed. I suppose that could be milled here. I would like to hear the Minister for Finance on that.

These are revenue tariffs.

I agree with the tariff on dried peas because we can produce peas here, and we are producing them. A certain firm in Dublin canvassed the farmers to grow peas, and they were in a position to guarantee them prices for these peas. I do not see why a revenue should be made out of these peas.

The tariff is only 1/2d. per lb.

That is the thin edge of the wedge.

Resolution put.
The Committee divided: Tá, 53; Níl, 40.

  • Aiken, Frank.
  • Bartley, Gerald.
  • Blaney, Neal.
  • Boland, Gerald.
  • Boland, Patrick.
  • Brady, Brian.
  • Breen, Daniel.
  • Briscoe, Robert.
  • Concannon, Helena.
  • Corish, Richard.
  • Corkery, Daniel.
  • Crowley, Fred. Hugh.
  • Crowley, Timothy.
  • Daly, Denis.
  • Derrig, Thomas.
  • De Valera, Eamon.
  • Donnelly, Eamon.
  • Dowdall, Thomas P.
  • Flinn, Hugo V.
  • Flynn, Stephen.
  • O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
  • O'Grady, Seán.
  • O'Reilly, Matthew.
  • Pattison, James P.
  • Pearse, Margaret Mary.
  • Rice, Edward.
  • Ruttledge, Patrick Joseph.
  • Fogarty, Andrew.
  • Gibbons, Seán.
  • Goulding, John.
  • Hales, Thomas.
  • Harris, Thomas.
  • Hayes, Seán.
  • Kehoe, Patrick.
  • Kelly, James Patrick.
  • Kelly, Thomas.
  • Killilea, Mark.
  • Kissane, Eamonn.
  • Lemass, Seán F.
  • Little, Patrick John.
  • MacEntee, Seán.
  • Maguire, Ben.
  • Maguire, Conor Alexander.
  • Moane, Edward.
  • Moore, Séamus.
  • Murphy, Timothy Joseph.
  • O Briain, Donnchadh.
  • Ryan, James.
  • Ryan, Martin.
  • Sheridan, Michael.
  • Smith, Patrick.
  • Traynor, Oscar.
  • Victory, James.

Níl

  • Alton, Ernest Henry.
  • Anthony, Richard.
  • Belton, Patrick.
  • Bennett, George Cecil.
  • Brennan, Michael.
  • Costello, John Aloysius.
  • Curran, Richard.
  • Desmond, William.
  • Dillon, James M.
  • Dolan, James Nicholas.
  • Doyle, Peadar S.
  • Fagan, Charles.
  • Finlay, John.
  • Fitzgerald, Desmond.
  • Good, John.
  • Haslett, Alexander.
  • Holohan, Richard.
  • Keating, John.
  • Lynch, Finian.
  • MacDermot, Frank.
  • MacEoin, Seán.
  • McFadden, Michael Og.
  • McGilligan, Patrick.
  • McGovern, Patrick.
  • McGuire, James Ivan.
  • Morrisroe, James.
  • Morrissey, Daniel.
  • Mulcahy, Richard.
  • Murphy, James Edward.
  • O'Higgins, Thomas Francis.
  • O'Leary, Daniel.
  • O'Mahony, The.
  • O'Neill, Eamonn.
  • O'Sullivan, Gearóid.
  • O'Sullivan, John Marcus.
  • Redmond, Bridget Mary.
  • Reidy, James.
  • Rice, Vincent.
  • Rowlette, Robert James.
  • Wall, Nicholas.
Tellers:—Tá: Deputies Little and Smith; Níl: Deputies Doyle and Bennett.
Question declared carried.