Houses of the Oireachtas

All parliamentary debates are now being published on our new website. The publication of debates on this website will cease in December 2018.

Go to oireachtas.ie

Order of Business (Continued)

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 787 No. 4

First Page Previous Page Page of 79 Next Page Last Page

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett Those leaving the Chamber should do so quickly as we have limited time for the Order of Business.

Deputy Micheál Martin: Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin With regard to the personal insolvency legislation, will the Taoiseach outline the timetable for the commencement of regulations? The Government has promised it will commence the Bill as quickly as possible. The matter of mortgage arrears is shocking, with over 180,000 people now in arrears, with much personal indebtedness. There is an incapacity of either the Government or the banking sector to deal adequately with the issue. It is important that the Taoiseach would let us know when he expects to commence the regulations following passage through this House of the Personal Insolvency Bill. Does the Government have any plans to commence the remaining sections of the Disability Act and the special education Act which deals with children with special needs?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The Minister for Justice and Equality will give full details of the schedule and timetable for the implementation of personal insolvency arrangements during the course of the debate. I do not have any indication from the Minister for Education and Skills of an intention with regard to the education Act raised by the Deputy. I will get the Minister to contact the Deputy.

Deputy Micheál Martin: Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin Will the Taoiseach give me a report?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The Minister will give a report.

Deputy Gerry Adams: Information on Gerry Adams Zoom on Gerry Adams Yesterday the UK Commission on a Bill of Rights made its final report. The Taoiseach knows the work of this commission for the last two and a half years or so has been used by the British Government to block a bill of rights for the North, which is part of the Good Friday Agreement. Interestingly, the final report of the commission recognised the distinctive Northern Ireland bill of rights process and its importance to the peace process. Given the Government's role as a co-guarantor of the Good Friday Agreement, will the Taoiseach outline how he intends to secure progress on the bill of rights for the North?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny What is the Deputy's question? We want the Good Friday Agreement implemented in full and as a co-guarantor of that, we see it as an important matter. I have not had the opportunity to read the bill of rights that the Deputy referred to and which was published yesterday. I will have to read it and consider its implications in the context of discussions we have with the Northern Ireland Executive and British authorities.

Deputy Gerry Adams: Information on Gerry Adams Zoom on Gerry Adams To clarify, there is no bill of rights, although there should be. The British Government set up a commission to examine the concept of a bill of rights for the United Kingdom and used that as an excuse not to introduce a specific bill of rights for the North. Yesterday, ironically, the commission recognised "the distinctive Northern Ireland bill of rights process and its importance to the peace process." The British Government-----

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett We are pressed for time.

Deputy Gerry Adams: Information on Gerry Adams Zoom on Gerry Adams I am disappointed the Taoiseach has not been briefed on this matter, which is a very important and key outstanding element of the Good Friday Agreement. As co-guarantor, what will the Government do to ensure the British Government keeps to this internationally recognised agreement, for which people North and South voted?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny I am sorry for the confusion. I will first read the report in respect of the bill of rights and the reference to the distinctive issue concerning Northern Ireland. I will follow that through with the Northern Ireland Executive and British Authorities.

Deputy Sandra McLellan: Information on Sandra McLellan Zoom on Sandra McLellan The programme for Government contains a commitment to ending long-term homelessness and the need to sleep rough. This morning's report by the Simon Community of Ireland noted significant increases in the numbers sleeping rough, particularly in Cork and Dublin, despite the opening of extra shelter beds. What legislation or action will come from the Government to address the growing homelessness crisis?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett Is there promised legislation?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny There is no promised legislation, although I noted the comments from the different organisations that work together to get extra accommodation for homeless persons.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath There will be more of them.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The Government will support these efforts.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett I ask Deputy Healy-Rae to be very brief as otherwise others will not get a chance to contribute.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae I will certainly be brief.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett There should be no preamble.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae Information has come to light over the past couple of days from the Office of Public Works that proves it will cost more to close Garda stations than keep them open.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett What legislation are we discussing?

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae It is a criminal justice Bill. Will the Taoiseach ask the Minister for Justice and Equality on his left if he will reverse from what he is now doing, which will end up costing the State more money-----

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath Hear, hear.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae -----than if he kept the stations open?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett That is a parliamentary question.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The Garda Commissioner made these recommendations and the Minister accepted them.

Deputy Dara Calleary: Information on Dara Calleary Zoom on Dara Calleary The Government made the decision.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny There will be a change in the way gardaí will do business, which will be to the benefit of every community. There will be more visibility, connection and contacts, with greater information.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae He is putting them into community centres. The man does not know what he is doing.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett The Deputy should be fair to other Members.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath It has been eight days since the Supreme Court handed down a judgment on the events leading up to the children's rights referendum involving misappropriation of funds and other issues. The Taoiseach indicated to Deputy Adams that he had not read the report he spoke of but this decision has been around for eight days. Will the Taoiseach comment on it? It was a shameful abuse of funds.

Deputy Alan Shatter: Information on Alan Shatter Zoom on Alan Shatter To what legislation is the Deputy referring?

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath This relates to the children's rights referendum Bill.

Deputy Regina Doherty: Information on Regina Doherty Zoom on Regina Doherty That legislation has been passed.

Deputy Micheál Martin: Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin It is a Supreme Court decision.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath It is a Supreme Court decision. The Taoiseach did not know about it when he spoke on radio as he referred to a High Court matter.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett That is not a matter for the Order of Business.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath It relates to the children's referendum Bill. The Government used €1.1 million.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny There is a High Court case on this in January and I answered questions on it yesterday. I am precluded from saying anything that could prejudice that case.

Deputy Micheál Martin: Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin No.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath That is not right. That is a cop-out.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett We are over time.

Deputy Bernard J. Durkan: Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan On promised legislation-----

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath Eight days have now passed.

Deputy Micheál Martin: Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin The Taoiseach blamed the Attorney General first.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath It is Christmas and I want to be nice but the Taoiseach should also be nice or fair.


Last Updated: 06/05/2020 12:02:17 First Page Previous Page Page of 79 Next Page Last Page