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29/01/2014 [Motions] I move:
That Seanad Éireann approves the following Regulations in draft:
Freedom of Information Act 1997 (Prescribed Bodies) Regulations 2014.
copies of which were laid in draft form before Seanad Éireann on 24th January, 2014.".[Cummins, Maurice]
Vol-229 Book-7 Page [409]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I welcome the opportunity to support this motion in the House. This will permit the making of regulations to enable the application of the provision of the freedom of information legislation to Irish Water, Uisce Éireann. The measure is being introduced in line with the procedures set ou...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [409]
29/01/2014 [Motions] This is the correct decision, but the Minister is, in some respects, coming in here with his tail between his legs. There was a Fianna Fáil amendment in the Dáil which sought to make Irish Water subject to the Freedom of Information Act, as amended, but the Government argued that it was n...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [410]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I welcome the Minister to the Chamber and the regulations to extend the provisions of the freedom of information legislation to Irish Water. The freedom of information legislation will bring transparency, accountability and, I hope, responsibility to the actions of Irish Water, which is s...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [411]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I welcome the Minister and, like others, the inclusion of Irish Water in the schedule of bodies covered by the Freedom of Information Act. However, it should not have taken the ongoing controversy surrounding the State utility to force the Government into doing this. I accept that the Mi...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [411]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I welcome the Minister who has been dedicated and has come to this House himself every time we discuss issues of reform, as promised in the programme for Government. That reform, as the Minister and others have said, is needed in order to restore public confidence in politics and the Gove...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I am laughing at the Labour Party which has been railroaded by Fine Gael into this policy.[Byrne, Thomas]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] -----at the mere idea of a member of Fianna Fáil describing the Minister as having his tail between his legs when it was a Fianna Fáil Government which introduced the constraints to the Freedom of Information Act in 2003, which this Government has overturned, as Senator Thomas Byrne well k...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] What has that got to do with Irish Water?[Byrne, Thomas]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] If the Senator allows me to finish, I will tell him. Of course, he also knows that the reform of the freedom of information legislation is still in train. The Bill is only on Report Stage. The Minister is still progressing the legislation through the House.[O'Keeffe, Susan]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] There was a vote, "Yes" or "No", on this matter. The Labour Party voted "No".[Byrne, Thomas]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] The record will show the Minister knew and understood Irish Water should be included in the freedom of information legislation. Now, at the end of January we are including it. Evidently, the Senator does not know much about how government works if he thinks it is going to be forced to in...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [412]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I welcome the Minister, as well as his amendment to the freedom of information legislation. Irish Water which has had a dreadful start needs to be brought under the freedom of information legislation. It should also come within the remit of the Comptroller and Auditor General as to how i...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [413]
29/01/2014 [Motions] They have not yet been determined.[Howlin, Brendan]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [413]
29/01/2014 [Motions] We tried to have the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform’s guidelines for capital projects included in the legislation. However, we ran into the proverbial brick wall.
Why is an energy regulator regulating water? Is it not a specialised field? Water engineers in the United Kin...
Vol-229 Book-7 Page [413]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I thank Senators from all sides of the House for their support for the motion.
Fianna Fáil’s record on freedom of information is inglorious and we will take no lectures from the party on it. There is a certain populist tone coming from Senator Thomas Byrne when he speaks about a bonus c...
Vol-229 Book-7 Page [413]
29/01/2014 [Motions] It would suit many people.[Cummins, Maurice]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [414]
29/01/2014 [Motions] I want to hear reasoned arguments and if they are reasonable, I will accept them. I am not surrendering or U-turning because I hear wise counsel on a rare occasion.[Howlin, Brendan]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [414]
29/01/2014 [Motions] Fair play to Seán O'Rourke.[Byrne, Thomas]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [414]
29/01/2014 [Motions] Senator Sean D. Barrett inquired about Irish Water coming under the remit of the Comptroller and Auditor General. That office has the distinct role of monitoring voted expenditure. It cannot oversee expenditure in a commercial company. We vote moneys for a purpose; the Comptroller and A...Vol-229 Book-7 Page [414]
29/01/2014 [Motions] Water companies.[Byrne, Thomas]Vol-229 Book-7 Page [414]
29/01/2014 [Motions] No, monopoly companies. Irish Rail is another example. We can debate what a monopoly is and what it is not when I return with freedom of information legislation.
Senators asked if the setting up of Irish Water was rushed. The establishment of Irish Water was a troika commitment entere...
Vol-229 Book-7 Page [414]
29/01/2014 [Motions] Question put and agreed to.Vol-229 Book-7
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