I welcome the Minister for the Environment and Local Government and his officials to the committee.
Business of Select Committee.
Has the timescale of the meeting been decided?
As the bulk of the amendments are related and hinge on the same principal issue, once we establish the Minister's view on that issue, the remainder of the Bill will be dealt with speedily. The business may not take much more than an hour.
In answer to Deputy Killeen we will be as brief as possible.
I wish to refer to correspondence I had with the Chairman with regard to the timing of the committee's meetings. We are missing an important opportunity each time we meet at 2.30 p.m. because it clashes with Questions to the Taoiseach in the Dáil. I appreciate that this is not a matter that can necessarily be dealt with today, but as a sole representative I wish to point out the impossibility of achieving bilocation. I feel at a distinct disadvantage, wishing as I do to play a substantive part in the work of the committee and, at the same time, wishing to be present for the business of the Dáil. This matter should be discussed with a view to arriving at a formula which would accommodate Members at a more convenient time.
As I told the Deputy, we found it extremely difficult and the Clerk to the Committee did everything possible to find a time to suit everybody. Unfortunately, it was not possible. We must take the present slot because we are not in a position to find another. We will continue to review the arrangements and we will get back to the Deputy as soon as we make better arrangements.