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Order of Business (Continued)

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 809 No. 2

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(Speaker Continuing)

[Deputy Timmy Dooley: Information on Timmy Dooley Zoom on Timmy Dooley] The Taoiseach indicated that the promised legislation would be delivered in this House before the summer recess. We had a difficult situation yesterday whereby the chairperson of the new independent Shannon Airport Authority had to go public and effectively criticise the Government for not moving more quickly in bringing this legislation forward. Can the Taoiseach please tell the House when he intends to publish this legislation?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny No, I cannot give the Deputy an accurate date on it. I hope that was not a criticism in the sense that we have quite a legislative squeeze here to get things through. It is expected later but I cannot give the Deputy an accurate date on it now.

Deputy James Bannon: Information on James Bannon Zoom on James Bannon Transport links are key to our economic development, particularly in the midlands. We need to modernise our transport infrastructure to give the travelling public a wider choice. Now that the Taoiseach has the EU Presidency behind him, he will be travelling more often through the midlands. He will, therefore, see the bottlenecks on the M4, particularly through Longford-Westmeath.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett We do not want a tour of Ireland just at the moment.

Deputy James Bannon: Information on James Bannon Zoom on James Bannon Maybe the Taoiseach can indicate when the road transport Bill will come before this House to replace the existing Road Transport Acts. The updated legislation should take account of new policy requirements and try to get the midlands up and running again.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett I think we have it now.

Deputy Timmy Dooley: Information on Timmy Dooley Zoom on Timmy Dooley The Deputy has been trying for a while now.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The midlands were very alert and energetic last Sunday week under the tutorship of Deputy Bannon down in Ballinalee. This Bill is not due until next year but, as the Deputy is aware, the Minister for Transport and the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform have made references on many occasions to road infrastructure and ongoing stimulus developments, including in the midlands.

Deputy Bernard J. Durkan: Information on Bernard Durkan Zoom on Bernard Durkan Will the Taoiseach indicate the current position with regard to the children (amendment) Bill which concerns the provision of places of detention for children and juveniles? In recent times, there have been references in the courts to the dearth of such suitable places.

As regards my old perennial, when can we expect the bail Bill to be debated in the House? Have the heads of both aforementioned Bills been discussed and when are they likely to be passed?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny I can confirm for Deputy Durkan that the heads of the children (amendment) Bill were approved in April. It is scheduled for publication later this year. The heads of the bail Bill have not yet come to Government and therefore I cannot give the Deputy a date on this occasion.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath In view of the changes that have taken place under the local government Bill, there are huge discrepancies in different areas. The Ceann Comhairle will be familiar with the town of Cashel. Almost all of the district outside the town is now going into a regional area that is away from it altogether. I am not accusing anyone of gerrymandering but-----

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett Which legislation is the Deputy referring to which concerns Cashel?

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath The local government Bill, which will affect the amalgamation of Tipperary, our proud county. It is devastating the way in which some of the town councils and other areas have been divided up.

I also wish to ask about the Education and Training Boards Bill in regard to adult and continuing education. There have been tremendous efforts and achievements over the years, which should be protected under that Bill, so that the work of further education will not be hived off and forgotten about.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett I think we have got the Deputy's message.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny Maybe the news did not get as far as Tipperary yet, but the education and training boards were established yesterday.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath I know that, of course.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny The local government Bill is a substantial measure and we expect to have it published and dealt with before the end of the year.

Deputy Mattie McGrath: Information on Mattie McGrath Zoom on Mattie McGrath More collateral damage.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae As regards the Education and Training Boards Bill, what is the Government going to do about SUSI grants?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett We have just dealt with that.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae No, that was a completely different issue.

Deputy Brendan Howlin: Information on Brendan Howlin Zoom on Brendan Howlin The Bill has been enacted.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae What is the Government going to do about paying students who are waiting for their grants in July?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett That is a different issue altogether. If the Deputy tables a parliamentary question I will see to it that it is answered.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae I have asked them several times but the Minister did not answer.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett Patience is a virtue.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae The Ceann Comhairle has people in his own constituency who are waiting for grants.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett I know, but I cannot deal with it on the Order of Business.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae I am sure he would like them to be paid, the same as I would like my people to be paid.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett The Deputy has made his point.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae That is the way. I have to face them, but you do not.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett I face my constituents every day.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae The Ceann Comhairle is entitled to a position.

Deputy Barry Cowen: Information on Barry Cowen Zoom on Barry Cowen I wish to ask the Taoiseach about the current status of the subcontractors legislation. Can he confirm that it contains a provision to deal with the subcontracting of labour only and that there is no provision for subcontracting materials? If that is the case, does it not defeat the initial purpose and thrust of the legislation?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny We have had intensive discussions about that. Report Stage of the Construction Contracts Bill is to be taken in the House next week.

  In response to Deputy Healy-Rae, some 60,000 applications have been paid and fewer than 100 have not been paid. SUSI is waiting for their details.

Deputy Timmy Dooley: Information on Timmy Dooley Zoom on Timmy Dooley SUSI would want to perk up and pay out.

A Deputy: SUSI will not answer the phone.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae SUSI will not talk.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny If the Deputy has a number of constituents who are affected, he should see to it that the outstanding details are submitted and the grants will be paid. As I said, fewer than 100 out of 60,000 have not been paid.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Seán Barrett Zoom on Seán Barrett There we are now.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae I am sorry, but the Taoiseach is wrong.

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny They need the details, Deputy.

Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: Information on Michael Healy-Rae Zoom on Michael Healy-Rae The Taoiseach is wrong.

Deputy Brendan Griffin: Information on Brendan Griffin Zoom on Brendan Griffin I want to ask the Taoiseach about legislation governing the regulation of sunbeds. The Irish Cancer Society, in particular, has been calling for that legislation to be progressed. Is there any expected timeframe for that particular legislation?

The Taoiseach: Information on Enda Kenny Zoom on Enda Kenny It would not be needed today anyway, but it will be taken later this year.


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