Dáil debates

Wednesday, 4 October 2006

Road Traffic and Transport Bill 2006 [Seanad]: Second Stage


12:00 pm

Photo of Martin CullenMartin Cullen (Minister, Department of Transport; Waterford, Fianna Fail)

Some are even younger, as Deputy Lynch stated, even 14 years of age, and it brings home to us that there is no second chance in many respects. The moment we go out on to the roads is the moment we must be responsible, think about what we are doing and act responsibility.

Many colleagues have pointed out the arcane nature of the language on some of the issues, and Deputy Olivia Mitchell tabled an amendment in that regard.

I confirm to the House that on the consolidation of the Road Transport Acts dealing with haulage and road passenger transport licences, it is our intention to rewrite and simplify all the passenger transport licensing laws and repeal all the previous Acts and statutory instruments dating back to the 1930s. This will bring all the licensing legislation into one Act and one standard instrument, which we all would welcome. My Department will ensure that this new Act and standard instrument will contain all necessary powers and provisions. Of course, we must meticulously keep all that up to date.

I have some experience of this from when I was Minister of State at the Department of Finance and, with former Minister, Charlie McCreevy, we consolidated all the Tax Acts. I was heavily involved in bringing that Bill through both Houses and I am familiar with the process and the meticulous and tedious nature of the work necessary to bring all these Acts together correctly. It takes time and there is no short-cut. We will do this because it is a process which we all, irrespective of our positions, would want to see completed. The first step, which we have started, is to restate the Road Traffic Acts in a way we can understand them and then we will begin the consolidation process. I am in agreement with everybody in the House that we need to do that.

I thank the House for supporting this legislation in the manner that it has.


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