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 Header Item Garda Síochána (Amendment) (No. 3) Bill 2014: Report Stage (Continued)
 Header Item Estimates for Public Services 2015: Message from Select Committee
 Header Item European Debt: Motion (Resumed) [Private Members]

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 866 No. 2

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Amendment put:

The Dáil divided: Tá, 39; Níl, 74.

Information on Gerry Adams   Zoom on Gerry Adams   Adams, Gerry. Information on Tom Barry   Zoom on Tom Barry   Barry, Tom.
Information on Thomas P. Broughan   Zoom on Thomas P. Broughan   Broughan, Thomas P. Information on Pat Breen   Zoom on Pat Breen   Breen, Pat.
Information on Dara Calleary   Zoom on Dara Calleary   Calleary, Dara. Information on Richard Bruton   Zoom on Richard Bruton   Bruton, Richard.
Information on Joan Collins   Zoom on Joan Collins   Collins, Joan. Information on Joan Burton   Zoom on Joan Burton   Burton, Joan.
Information on Niall Collins   Zoom on Niall Collins   Collins, Niall. Information on Ray Butler   Zoom on Ray Butler   Butler, Ray.
Information on Michael Colreavy   Zoom on Michael Colreavy   Colreavy, Michael. Information on Jerry Buttimer   Zoom on Jerry Buttimer   Buttimer, Jerry.
Information on Barry Cowen   Zoom on Barry Cowen   Cowen, Barry. Information on Catherine Byrne   Zoom on Catherine Byrne   Byrne, Catherine.
Information on Seán Crowe   Zoom on Seán Crowe   Crowe, Seán. Information on Eric J. Byrne   Zoom on Eric J. Byrne   Byrne, Eric.
Information on Clare Daly   Zoom on Clare Daly   Daly, Clare. Information on Joe Carey   Zoom on Joe Carey   Carey, Joe.
Information on Pearse Doherty   Zoom on Pearse Doherty   Doherty, Pearse. Information on Paudie Coffey   Zoom on Paudie Coffey   Coffey, Paudie.
Information on Dessie Ellis   Zoom on Dessie Ellis   Ellis, Dessie. Information on Áine Collins   Zoom on Áine Collins   Collins, Áine.
Information on Martin Ferris   Zoom on Martin Ferris   Ferris, Martin. Information on Michael Conaghan   Zoom on Michael Conaghan   Conaghan, Michael.
Information on Michael Fitzmaurice   Zoom on Michael Fitzmaurice   Fitzmaurice, Michael. Information on Sean Conlan   Zoom on Sean Conlan   Conlan, Seán.
Information on Terence Flanagan   Zoom on Terence Flanagan   Flanagan, Terence. Information on Paul Connaughton   Zoom on Paul Connaughton   Connaughton, Paul J.
Information on Seán Fleming   Zoom on Seán Fleming   Fleming, Sean. Information on Ciara Conway   Zoom on Ciara Conway   Conway, Ciara.
Information on Tom Fleming   Zoom on Tom Fleming   Fleming, Tom. Information on Noel Coonan   Zoom on Noel Coonan   Coonan, Noel.
Information on John Halligan   Zoom on John Halligan   Halligan, John. Information on Marcella Corcoran Kennedy   Zoom on Marcella Corcoran Kennedy   Corcoran Kennedy, Marcella.
Information on Seamus Healy   Zoom on Seamus Healy   Healy, Seamus. Information on Joe Costello   Zoom on Joe Costello   Costello, Joe.
Information on Billy Kelleher   Zoom on Billy Kelleher   Kelleher, Billy. Information on Simon Coveney   Zoom on Simon Coveney   Coveney, Simon.
Information on Seamus Kirk   Zoom on Seamus Kirk   Kirk, Seamus. Information on Michael Creed   Zoom on Michael Creed   Creed, Michael.
Information on Pádraig MacLochlainn   Zoom on Pádraig MacLochlainn   Mac Lochlainn, Pádraig. Information on Jim Daly   Zoom on Jim Daly   Daly, Jim.
Information on Charlie McConalogue   Zoom on Charlie McConalogue   McConalogue, Charlie. Information on John Deasy   Zoom on John Deasy   Deasy, John.
Information on Finian McGrath   Zoom on Finian McGrath   McGrath, Finian. Information on Patrick Deering   Zoom on Patrick Deering   Deering, Pat.
Information on Mattie McGrath   Zoom on Mattie McGrath   McGrath, Mattie. Information on Paschal Donohoe   Zoom on Paschal Donohoe   Donohoe, Paschal.
Information on Michael McGrath   Zoom on Michael McGrath   McGrath, Michael. Information on Robert Dowds   Zoom on Robert Dowds   Dowds, Robert.
Information on John McGuinness   Zoom on John McGuinness   McGuinness, John. Information on Andrew Doyle   Zoom on Andrew Doyle   Doyle, Andrew.
Information on Sandra McLellan   Zoom on Sandra McLellan   McLellan, Sandra. Information on Bernard Durkan   Zoom on Bernard Durkan   Durkan, Bernard J.
Information on Peter Mathews   Zoom on Peter Mathews   Mathews, Peter. Information on Alan Farrell   Zoom on Alan Farrell   Farrell, Alan.
Information on Catherine Murphy   Zoom on Catherine Murphy   Murphy, Catherine. Information on Frank Feighan   Zoom on Frank Feighan   Feighan, Frank.
Information on Denis Naughten   Zoom on Denis Naughten   Naughten, Denis. Information on Frances Fitzgerald   Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald   Fitzgerald, Frances.
Information on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin   Zoom on Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin   Ó Caoláin, Caoimhghín. Information on Peter Fitzpatrick   Zoom on Peter Fitzpatrick   Fitzpatrick, Peter.
Information on Seán Ó Fearghaíl   Zoom on Seán Ó Fearghaíl   Ó Fearghaíl, Seán. Information on Eamon Gilmore   Zoom on Eamon Gilmore   Gilmore, Eamon.
Information on Jonathan O'Brien   Zoom on Jonathan O'Brien   O'Brien, Jonathan. Information on Brendan Griffin   Zoom on Brendan Griffin   Griffin, Brendan.
Information on Maureen O'Sullivan   Zoom on Maureen O'Sullivan   O'Sullivan, Maureen. Information on Noel Harrington   Zoom on Noel Harrington   Harrington, Noel.
Information on Thomas Pringle   Zoom on Thomas Pringle   Pringle, Thomas. Information on Simon Harris   Zoom on Simon Harris   Harris, Simon.
Information on Shane P.N. Ross   Zoom on Shane P.N. Ross   Ross, Shane. Information on Martin Heydon   Zoom on Martin Heydon   Heydon, Martin.
Information on Brian Stanley   Zoom on Brian Stanley   Stanley, Brian. Information on Heather Humphreys   Zoom on Heather Humphreys   Humphreys, Heather.
Information on Peadar Tóibín   Zoom on Peadar Tóibín   Tóibín, Peadar. Information on Derek Keating   Zoom on Derek Keating   Keating, Derek.
Information on Mick Wallace   Zoom on Mick Wallace   Wallace, Mick. Information on Seán Kenny   Zoom on Seán Kenny   Kenny, Seán.
  Information on Seán Kyne   Zoom on Seán Kyne   Kyne, Seán.
  Information on Anthony Lawlor   Zoom on Anthony Lawlor   Lawlor, Anthony.
  Information on Ciaran Lynch   Zoom on Ciaran Lynch   Lynch, Ciarán.
  Information on Kathleen Lynch   Zoom on Kathleen Lynch   Lynch, Kathleen.
  Information on John Lyons   Zoom on John Lyons   Lyons, John.
  Information on Michael McCarthy   Zoom on Michael McCarthy   McCarthy, Michael.
  Information on Helen McEntee   Zoom on Helen McEntee   McEntee, Helen.
  Information on Gabrielle McFadden   Zoom on Gabrielle McFadden   McFadden, Gabrielle.
  Information on Dinny McGinley   Zoom on Dinny McGinley   McGinley, Dinny.
  Information on Tony McLoughlin   Zoom on Tony McLoughlin   McLoughlin, Tony.
  Information on Michael McNamara   Zoom on Michael McNamara   McNamara, Michael.
  Information on Eamonn Maloney   Zoom on Eamonn Maloney   Maloney, Eamonn.
  Information on Olivia Mitchell   Zoom on Olivia Mitchell   Mitchell, Olivia.
  Information on Mary Mitchell O'Connor   Zoom on Mary Mitchell O'Connor   Mitchell O'Connor, Mary.
  Information on Michelle Mulherin   Zoom on Michelle Mulherin   Mulherin, Michelle.
  Information on Dan Neville   Zoom on Dan Neville   Neville, Dan.
  Information on Derek Nolan   Zoom on Derek Nolan   Nolan, Derek.
  Information on Michael Noonan   Zoom on Michael Noonan   Noonan, Michael.
  Information on Aodhán Ó Ríordáin   Zoom on Aodhán Ó Ríordáin   Ó Ríordáin, Aodhán.
  Information on Kieran O'Donnell   Zoom on Kieran O'Donnell   O'Donnell, Kieran.
  Information on Patrick O'Donovan   Zoom on Patrick O'Donovan   O'Donovan, Patrick.
  Information on Fergus O'Dowd   Zoom on Fergus O'Dowd   O'Dowd, Fergus.
  Information on John O'Mahony   Zoom on John O'Mahony   O'Mahony, John.
  Information on Joe O'Reilly   Zoom on Joe O'Reilly   O'Reilly, Joe.
  Information on Jan O'Sullivan   Zoom on Jan O'Sullivan   O'Sullivan, Jan.
  Information on John Perry   Zoom on John Perry   Perry, John.
  Information on Ann Phelan   Zoom on Ann Phelan   Phelan, Ann.
  Information on John Paul Phelan   Zoom on John Paul Phelan   Phelan, John Paul.
  Information on Pat Rabbitte   Zoom on Pat Rabbitte   Rabbitte, Pat.
  Information on Michael Ring   Zoom on Michael Ring   Ring, Michael.
  Information on Seán Sherlock   Zoom on Seán Sherlock   Sherlock, Sean.
  Information on Emmet Stagg   Zoom on Emmet Stagg   Stagg, Emmet.
  Information on David Stanton   Zoom on David Stanton   Stanton, David.
  Information on Joanna Tuffy   Zoom on Joanna Tuffy   Tuffy, Joanna.
  Information on Alex White   Zoom on Alex White   White, Alex.

Tellers: Tá, Deputies Pádraig Mac Lochlainn and Mick Wallace; Níl, Deputies Joe Carey and Emmet Stagg.

Amendment declared lost.

Debate adjourned.

Estimates for Public Services 2015: Message from Select Committee

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Michael Kitt Zoom on Michael Kitt The Select Committee on Justice, Defence and Equality has completed its consideration of Votes 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25 for the year ending 31 December 2015.

European Debt: Motion (Resumed) [Private Members]

The following motion was moved by Deputy Catherine Murphy on Tuesday, 3 January 2015:

“That Dáil Éireann notes:
- that the financial crisis highlighted the deviation from the founding principles and values of the European Union (EU) such as solidarity and mutual respect amongst nations;

- the unsustainability of the debt burden imposed on Ireland and other European countries;

- that the debt burden is an obstacle to economic and social development;

- that Ireland was a casualty of timing which allowed for private banking debts to be socialised, thus sacrificing the social and economic interests of Irish citizens; and

- that there is an urgent need to recapture the founding principle of solidarity and work towards a co-operative effort to promote sustainable growth and job creation across the EU; and

calls on the Government to:

- support calls for a European Debt Conference in order to agree a common solution with our Eurozone partners; and

- work constructively at European Council level and with all relevant EU institutions towards establishing a European Debt Conference.”

Debate resumed on amendment No. 1:

To delete all words after “Dáil Éireann” and substitute the following:
“acknowledges that the financial crisis exposed flaws in the euro area’s design;

notes the significant enhancements to the economic, fiscal and banking frameworks in the European Union since the crisis;

acknowledges that sustainable growth and job creation across the EU are a priority and indeed was a priority of the Irish presidency;

recognises the importance of the founding principles and values of the Union, such as solidarity and mutual respect amongst nations;

further acknowledges the support of our European colleagues in the reduction of our debt burden through the lengthening of maturities on the European Financial Stability Facility and European Financial Stabilisation Mechanism debt, the reduction in interest rates on this debt, the promissory note deal and facilitating the early repayment of the more expensive International Monetary Fund debt;

notes that:

- Ireland has emerged from the economic and fiscal crisis and is now the fastest growing EU member state, and most importantly jobs are being created;

- debt is sustainable and on a firmly downward trajectory;

- economic recovery has allowed us to invest in public services and reduce the tax burden on individuals in budget 2015; and

- other programme countries are also growing strongly;

recognises that multilateral engagement should form the basis for discussions regarding debt sustainability and that the Eurogroup and Ecofin are the appropriate fora in this regard; and

agrees that the focus should be on promoting sustainable growth and job creation across the EU.”
(Minister for Finance)

Deputy Pearse Doherty: Information on Pearse Doherty Zoom on Pearse Doherty I am glad to be in a position to support the motion proposed by the Technical Group and co-signed by Sinn Féin Members. It is a sensible and timely motion that Ireland would support the call for a debt conference.

Somebody in my office brought to my attention the headline in one of our newspapers about the Minister, Deputy Noonan, saying he broadly supported the concept of a debt conference. My response at the time was, "Sure, what else could he say?" because it was completely in Ireland's interest to support such a call. It would be in Ireland's interest if such a conference happened and was fruitful. Therefore, a Minister for Finance doing anything other than welcoming and being supportive of such a call would have been quite bizarre. However, as events unfolded and we got closer to the election, we have seen the Minister, Deputy Noonan, starting to retract and backtrack on what he reportedly said at that meeting. The Taoiseach has come out very clearly and said the Government would not support the idea of a debt conference.

I cannot get my head around that because this is not about setting ultimatums for our fellow Europeans or trying to have a showdown with them. It is about acknowledging that in many member states across Europe there is an issue with a large level of debt in member states and in some cases that level of debt being unsustainable. It is about the first course of action to deal with the problem. In any situation where a person has a serious problem the first way to deal with it is to acknowledge that there is a problem in itself. An addict addicted to a substance must acknowledge that he or she is addicted. In this case Europe is addicted to too much debt and to the austerity policies that heap more crippling debt upon debt.

A debt conference in itself is the signal that Europe is confirming that what has happened up to now is no longer the path we can go down into the future. We have to acknowledge that something needs to be done about the high level of indebtedness of some member states.

How can that issue be resolved? There are as many proposals for resolving the over-indebtedness of Europe as there are people in this Chamber. However, it is not about which proposal is better than the other, whether it is the Greek academics' proposal about buying up debt of member states above 50% of GDP and having a zero coupon interest rate applied to that over a period until the state's economy is large enough to buy back that debt, the other proposals over debt swaps, or proposals such as bonds that would be linked to GDP growth and so on. There are many proposals and we have our own that have been debated in this Chamber about retroactive recapitalisation and about the ECB holding on to the Anglo Irish Bank promissory note bonds - the debt that has been turned into Irish bonds.

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