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Martin, Micheál

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.

Leaders' Questions

Last night Ulster Bank confirmed that it would close 40 more branches and lay off additional staff. In that bank alone we are looking at the loss of between 1,400 and 1,800 jobs, which is a stagge...More Button

It is interesting that the Government’s response to the mindset and mood revealed in the presentation to investors yesterday was essentially to capitulate to the bank’s agenda. It is clear that ...More Button

Does the Minister share the view of Ulster Bank that up to 35% of mortgage defaulters are strategic? Is that the Government’s view as well? Given the mindset, as revealed by the bank, will the ...More Button

The Minister referred to expressing sympathy. People need more than that at this stage. I asked him a basic question, whether he shared the Ulster Bank’s view that up to 35% of those in arrears w...More Button

Since the Keane report, out of 144,000 people in mortgage arrears, we have only had 144 split mortgages. That is an indication of the lack of engagement to date by the banks with people on the bas...More Button

Leaders' Questions (Continued)

Yet the Minister refers to adjusting to new realities. New Beginning asserts that there are up to 50 new repossession cases before the courts every month. This is the new reality to which many of...More Button

Bank activity has focused increasingly on such people in the past eight weeks. This is what we are hearing on the ground and from the groups at the coalface. There is an absence of independent ...More Button

Inexplicably, the Government changed the code of conduct a short while ago and reduced the protections. It stood by and allowed this to happen.More Button

The change gives more power to the banks to do what they want, namely-----More Button

-----return to profitability and target those in arrears. There are no safeguards against abuse in terms of increased contact. All the restrictions about contacts with customers are gone.More Button

The banks can harass people for as long as they want.More Button

For the first time ever, tracker mortgages are now on the table. People are getting no-----More Button

The truth hurts, Deputy Stagg. There is no independent oversight in terms of those-----More Button

There is no independent oversight of tracker mortgages or the offers that banks may make to people on those mortgages-----More Button

-----to ensure the wool is not pulled over their eyes.More Button

There is no entitlement to a minimum level of income, for example.More Button

Fundamentally, the Government has changed the legislation to give all of the power and control in this scenario to the banks.More Button

I accept that.More Button

I just want to ask him, if I may-----More Button

Many people on the Government benches are aspiring to the Leas-Cheann Comhairle's position and are giving him instructions.More Button

Given what was revealed yesterday-----More Button

-----will the Government change tack and ensure independent oversight of the relationship between banks and mortgage holders?More Button

Does the Minister agree with Ulster Bank?More Button

Answer the question.More Button

It is not. The Central Bank has made it clear that it has no prescriptive powers.More Button

The Minister should not mislead the House on this point.More Button

Would someone in arrears go to the ombudsman?More Button

There is not.More Button

And allow more repossessions.More Button

Thousands of them.More Button

Order of Business

Perhaps the Minister would outline the purpose of the motion.More Button

Will the Minister outline what is involved?More Button

I would like the Minister to set out what committees will be affected.More Button

Will the Minister name the committees involved?More Button

What does it say?More Button

In terms of the procedures of the House, it is ridiculous that the Minister is not willing to stand up and announce the changes.More Button

No. This is a lengthy Order of Business. We may not have enough time to get through all that has been proposed.

  Before dealing with this specific issue, I wish to congratulat...More Button

It is an extraordinary tribute to her ability and illustrates the heights to which Irish journalists can go in Europe and globally. I wish her every success in her future career. This reflects we...More Button

In terms of the motion before us, Fianna Fáil's spokesperson on public expenditure and reform, Deputy Seán Fleming, was allocated only six minutes yesterday to speak on important amendments which...More Button

Order of Business (Continued)

However, he was given precious little time to debate his amendments. The Minister appears to agree. It is now proposed to guillotine the Report and Final Stages of the Bill. More Button

The purpose of today's Order Paper is almost exclusively to guillotine debates.

  During Questions yesterday, the House was treated to a presentation by the Taoiseach in which he...More Button

We have been hearing this message every week for the past year and a half. I have never had a discussion with the Taoiseach about Dáil reform because since taking office he has not volunteered to ...More Button

This practice is totally contrary to the specific commitment made by both parties in the programme for Government in which they signed up to ensuring that non-emergency legislation would not be gui...More Button

This is very important legislation that essentially gives carte blanche to the banks to repossess family homes without any conditionality attached. When this is combined with a dilutio...More Button

No IndicatorVoted No More Button

Further, it is in the context of a proposal to come before the people in the autumn to abolish the Seanad. What we are witnessing, bit by bit, is an incremental reduction of the democratic process...More Button

We already know that the Government has clocked up a record in terms of the number of guillotines it has introduced since this Dáil commenced on very serious Bills such as those relating to the p...More Button

I am entitled to speak. Deputy Stagg is not the Chair.More Button

Stop acting with the bully-boy tactics.More Button

Deputy Stagg is not the Chair. There is enough of a power grab going on now. He wants to run the whole show.More Button

This is the standing, a Leas-Cheann Comhairle.More Button

I am entitled to speak. This is a very important Bill. We all have people coming to us who are in mortgage arrears and who are worried about the power of the banks and the attitude of the banks t...More Button

David Hall has said that up to 50 new repossession cases are coming before the courts every month.More Button

He has said there is an increased frequency in the level of approaches of that kind to people in mortgage arrears. No conditionality is being attached-----More Button

There is no independent------More Button

I am endeavouring to make my contribution but, in line with the authoritarian streak evident in this Government, all we get is Deputies of the Government parties trying to shout down members of the...More Button

There is no necessity to guillotine this Bill. The spokespeople should be allowed proper time and space to table amendments and to discuss and vote on them. There was no need to guillotine the la...More Button

I know that and the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Deputy Howlin, knows that as well. However, it is being done for the convenience of Government and for the convenience of the Govern...More Button

It is a disgrace. It is treating the House with contempt and treating the programme for Government with contempt as well.More Button

No.More Button

Again, I object to the guillotining of this Bill. Twenty-seven amendments have been tabled to that particular legislation and approximately one hour and 20 minutes has been allocated to go through...More Button

Again, this is the Government running the House, deciding what gets debated and for how long, as well as how much time is given for individual amendments. This is jackboot politics and jackboot pa...More Button

This is what goes on in here, day in and day out. It flies in the face of what the Government stated it would do in the programme for Government. The Government should tear up the programme for G...More Button

While the truth hurts, recent research has demonstrated the degree to which the Government has flouted its own commitments in the programme for Government in respect of Dáil reform. I refer, for e...More Button

That is what he said on the front page of The Irish Times.More Button

I agree with the Chief Whip-----More Button

I agree with him that the performance of the Government in respect of Dáil reform has been truly deplorable.More Button

Will the Minister give a commitment to Members that this is the last of this kind of series of measures that would be put before the House before the summer recess?More Button

The Government should have some respect for the House. The Government intends to get rid of the other House and wants to get rid of urban councils.More Button

Moreover, it is giving people in the Gaeltacht no vote on who represents them on Údarás na Gaeltachta.More Button

All that will be left is this House, and as far as the Government is concerned, that suits it fine.More Button

With a majority, it is happy to suppress debate and dissent, as Deputy Mathews knows only too well this morning. Despite his financial acumen and his ability, he was summarily dismissed.More Button

There is an authoritarian streak at the heart of the present Government and it is evident every day.More Button

Land and Conveyancing Law Reform Bill 2013: Report and Final Stages (Continued)

No IndicatorVoted No More Button

No IndicatorVoted No More Button

Institutes of Technology Issues

Asked the Minister for Education and Skills: his plans to change the procedures in place for stationery procurement in primary schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter.More Button