Dáil debates

Tuesday, 7 November 2006

5:00 pm

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is proposed to take No. 9, motion re Standing Orders Nos. 125 and 170; No. 10, motion re ministerial rota for parliamentary questions; No. 15, Citizens Information Bill 2006 — Second Stage, resumed; and No. 1, Europol (Amendment) Bill 2006 [Seanad] — Second Stage.

It is proposed, notwithstanding anything in Standing Orders, that Nos. 9 and 10 shall be decided without debate. Private Members' business shall be No. 54, motion re energy price increases.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

There is one proposal to put to the House. Is the proposal for dealing with Nos. 9 and 10 without debate, motions re Standing Orders Nos. 125 and 170 and the ministerial rota for parliamentary questions, agreed? Agreed.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

No. 28, the carbon fund Bill, is on the list for early 2007. When is it likely to be published? When is the immigration and residence Bill due for publication? This Bill will update the law on immigration, residence and other matters relating to non-nationals and is also expected in early 2007. Will the Taoiseach give an update on the situation in respect of the wish of the people of Dingle——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The third question does not arise. The Deputy was doing very well on the first two.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The first two questions are perfectly legitimate.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Unfortunately, the third one is not.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Seán Lemass used to say that Fianna Fáil was slightly constitutional. In fairness, the question is not far off the mark. There was a referendum in Dingle and perhaps the Taoiseach will give us an update on the visit of the Minister with responsibility for the Gaeltacht to that area.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Unfortunately, the Chair cannot make that decision.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The heads of the carbon fund Bill were approved in July and the Bill is on target for early 2007. There are 70 heads in the immigration and residence Bill and these have just been approved. The Bill is due in 2007 but I do not have a definite date on it. The Bill will update the law on immigration, residence and other matters relating to non-nationals. I understand the Minister will attend a meeting on the other issue raised.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is it An Daingean or Dingle?

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It appears the state of the electoral register after the refurbishment is worse than it was before we started out. What action does the Government intend to take——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That does not arise on the Order of Business.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It does.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Chair will facilitate the Deputy if he wishes to raise the matter in an appropriate way.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I remember asking Mick McCarthy once how many times he had been sent off——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That certainly does not arise on the Order of Business.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

——and he said he probably deserved it the first four times and he certainly deserved it the last three times. Similarly, I think a question about the state of the electoral register on the Order of Business is entirely appropriate.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is an appropriate question for the line Minister and there are many ways the Deputy can raise the matter in the House, but it is not appropriate on the Order of Business. The Deputy could have raised the matter on Leaders' Questions.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

May I put it this way? Will the Taoiseach provide time in the House to debate the grossly inadequate state of the electoral register?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is time promised?

Photo of Liz McManusLiz McManus (Wicklow, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

We did not hear a reply.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I wish to raise a second matter. Do I understand the Taoiseach to have said today at Question Time that there is no prospect of a referendum on the children's issue before the general election or did he say that it is an open question because he must discuss the issue with the rest of us? I know that will weigh heavily on him. Will he be clearer? Will there be a referendum before the general election?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

If I state that we must have it by a particular time, taking into account the consultation process, people will say that I am being prescriptive in trying to decide it. It is an open question. The Minister of State at the Department of Health and Children, Deputy Brian Lenihan, is available and ready to enter into dialogue with the political parties and the many NGO organisations with an interest in this issue and has been talking to them over recent months prior to the UN meeting. If we can agree on the wording, I am happy to have the referendum whenever possible. It may be included with other issues, before the general election or with the election. I am totally open on the issue.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Will we have a debate on the state of the electoral register?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That does not arise on the Order of Business.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I can ask for a debate.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Only on promised debates.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It would be as well for the Ceann Comhairle to shut the House down altogether.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It might suit the Deputy to stay within Standing Orders.

Photo of Pat RabbittePat Rabbitte (Dublin South West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is an important matter. Will the Taoiseach provide time for us to have a discussion on the matter or will he say what measures will be taken to make the register representative of the number of people who are entitled to vote?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The second question is out of order.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I cannot answer the second question. The Minister has asked that the relevant Oireachtas committee meet so that he can make a presentation on the matter. There is a good and positive story to tell. There is also the requirement where the House can help to ensure the register is completed. Given that the Minister has asked I suggest the committee do that.

Photo of Seymour CrawfordSeymour Crawford (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Tell the people.

Photo of Trevor SargentTrevor Sargent (Dublin North, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I regret the Chair did not see fit to accept my Standing Order 31 request. On promised legislation, I seek to move the matter on to some extent. When it comes to the use of banned chemicals and violation of labour standards in a company it is strange that the employment rights compliance Bill does not, as yet, seem to have a date for publication.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

On legislation——

Photo of Trevor SargentTrevor Sargent (Dublin North, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That is my first point. I ask about that legislation and the date of publication.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I ask the Taoiseach to respond.

Photo of Trevor SargentTrevor Sargent (Dublin North, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Following his reply to Deputy Kenny on the carbon fund Bill, is that the only legislation in train to face the challenge presented by the Stern report?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is legislation promised?

Photo of Trevor SargentTrevor Sargent (Dublin North, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is there other legislation or do we have to wait until the Green Party gets into Government before we can get any decisive and effective action?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I do not have a date as to when the employment rights compliance Bill will be published. The heads of the Bill have not been brought forward so I do not have a date.

Photo of Trevor SargentTrevor Sargent (Dublin North, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Everybody knows that.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I was asked about the carbon fund Bill. The issue of the Stern report is being examined across a number of Departments with a view to taking whatever action is necessary.

Photo of Richard BrutonRichard Bruton (Dublin North Central, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Has the Government abandoned the intellectual property legislation? I remember I was likened to a good German doctor for quoting statistics from the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform. Now the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform is turning 12,500 Garda into 14,000 and the Minister for Finance is turning 650,000 people paying tax at 42% into 400,000.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Deputy will have to wait until the Bill comes before the House to discuss Second Stage.

Photo of Richard BrutonRichard Bruton (Dublin North Central, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Certainly the integrity of data is collapsing on that side. Maybe the Government was too high on its own supply over the weekend.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It was magic.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I was looking at the correspondence. It was good of Deputy Bruton to word the question in a way that makes everybody look at the answer. It was interesting to find out, when one examines it, that only 20% of people pay the higher rate of tax.

Photo of Richard BrutonRichard Bruton (Dublin North Central, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It was a very creative and technical argument that the Taoiseach could not master.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I did not have the time to do it. It was very kind of the Deputy to frame his question in a way that actually made people look at the answer. Now we know that only 20% of the people pay tax at the higher rate.

Deputies:

Thank you doctor.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That is provided the answer is correct.

Photo of Liz McManusLiz McManus (Wicklow, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

We have been promised many times the publication of the Leas Cross nursing home report. When will we see it?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

To be honest, I do not know.

Photo of Liz McManusLiz McManus (Wicklow, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I am sorry——

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I will try to find out the information for the Deputy.

Photo of Liz McManusLiz McManus (Wicklow, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I ask the Taoiseach to pay more attention to this matter. This matter has been going on since May——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Sorry, Deputy, we cannot have a debate.

Photo of Liz McManusLiz McManus (Wicklow, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

——and people have a right to see this report. I am grateful the Taoiseach said he would get back to me. What is much more important is that he gets back to the Irish people and publishes what is a very important report.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Sorry, my note says on or about 10 November, which is this Friday. Quite honestly, I was not aware of that.

Photo of Liz McManusLiz McManus (Wicklow, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I thank the Taoiseach.

Photo of Caoimhghín Ó CaoláinCaoimhghín Ó Caoláin (Cavan-Monaghan, Sinn Fein)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I note the heads of the Bill on the long-overdue legislation to outlaw human trafficking have finally been published. When is it intended that the criminal law trafficking in persons and sexual offences Bill will be brought before the House? In relation to the Child Care (Amendment) Bill, can the Taoiseach advise as to what stage it is at in terms of its passage through the Seanad and when it is intended that the Bill will come before the Dáil Chamber?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The heads of the criminal justice trafficking in persons and sexual offences Bill have been completed and it is gone for drafting. It is hoped to have the Bill in early 2007. I understand Report Stage of the Child Care (Amendment) Bill has been ordered for the Seanad tomorrow.

Photo of Denis NaughtenDenis Naughten (Longford-Roscommon, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Under promised secondary legislation, part of the nitrates action plan was implemented on 1 August 2006 and part has yet to come into force. When will that statutory instrument come into force? When will the agricultural community be informed of the legislation that is now binding which means they can be fined up to €30,000——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Sorry, Deputy——

Photo of Denis NaughtenDenis Naughten (Longford-Roscommon, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

——for spreading fertiliser on land if the ground temperatures are one degree lower than that set out in the statutory instrument? This is bureaucracy gone mad.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is. That is a sure sign of it.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I understand it will be published next week and that meetings have been ongoing throughout the country for the past few weeks.

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

In view of the initiative launched yesterday by the Shell to Sea campaign to establish a commission to try to break the impasse on the Corrib gas——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Has the Deputy a question on legislation?

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Will he consider underpinning that commission——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is legislation promised?

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Sorry, a Cheann Comhairle——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

As the Deputy is aware, on the Order of Business it is appropriate to ask about promised legislation.

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I am about to finish the question and I am coming to the parts which are relevant.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The House has gone on 24 minutes too long on Leaders' Questions so it is time to move on.

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is in relation to legislation.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

What is the Deputy's question on legislation?

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Will the Taoiseach consider underpinning it——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is legislation promised?

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

——with the commission of investigation legislation?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

No legislation has been promised. I call Deputy Boyle.

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Will he give time to debate the matter in the House?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Sorry, Deputy, as Deputy Stagg has pointed out to me so often it is a matter for the Whips.

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Well if it is a matter for the Whips, the Taoiseach can reply to it here.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Yes, Deputy, but if I were to allow that question every Member——

Photo of Joe CostelloJoe Costello (Dublin Central, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Whips on this side have no say in the matter.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

——on each side of the House would get up and raise an issue he or she would like to see debated in the House.

Photo of Dan BoyleDan Boyle (Cork South Central, Green Party)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Will secondary legislation be available by way of an instrument to the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment for a situation I outlined earlier under Standing Order 31 for a company in which the Minister for Agriculture and Food, supposedly, has a golden share, in terms of redundancies in the Greencore company? If that instrument is not available to the Minister does the promised legislation, the protection of employment exceptional collective redundancy Bill, cover that circumstance?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

We cannot discuss what the interpretation of legislation means.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That legislation will be published next year.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

A year ago the postal services Bill was promised. Last week the Tánaiste said it was not promised. On the legislative programme published at the time, which I have, it was promised. Perhaps the Taoiseach will indicate how, in the space of a year, legislation that was promised is no longer promised and for what reason——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I call the Taoiseach on legislation.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

——given, particularly, the need to address the issue of the postal services and the internal problems in An Post at any given time and the whole structure——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

We cannot discuss what might be in the Bill. I call the Taoiseach on the legislation.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I wish to raise two other items. I receive countless complaints, as I am sure everybody else does, from all over the country about ESB bills being estimated whereby the consumer has to pay the accumulated increases——

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Has the Deputy got a question on legislation?

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I have. The relevant legislation can be dealt with in the context of a debate on the single electricity market Bill.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Is that promised legislation?

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is promised legislation. On a daily basis we all get continuous complaints about the lack of availability of broadband and the lack of urgency in the provision of the facility throughout the country with a consequent impact on business. The legislation is the electronic communications Bill which is promised.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Regarding the Deputy's first question on postal services, earlier this year the Minister withdrew that Bill. The other two Bills, the Single Electricity Market Bill and the Electronic Communications (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill, will be introduced this session.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Why did the Minister withdraw the Bill?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Deputy should put down a question to the Minister.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I did so.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is four months since the Commission on Electronic Voting submitted its report to this House. When will the Government provide time for a debate on that report?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

As I pointed out to Deputy Gilmore's colleague, if everybody asks the same questions ——

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

This is perfectly in order. The report was submitted to the House and we are entitled to debate it.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Deputy should ask the Whips to discuss the matter.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That was the answer I received when I last asked the question two or three weeks ago. I understand the matter has been raised with the Whips. When will the Government provide time to debate this report?

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It is an important issue.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Taoiseach says it is a matter for the Whips.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Government orders time in this House. When will time be provided?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I suggest the Deputy should find another way of raising the matter.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

This is the way to raise it.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The question has been answered by the Taoiseach and the Chair does not intend to remain here all day. I call Deputy Crawford.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

With the greatest respect, this is a report which was made to the House and this is the time and place to raise the question of when it will be debated. Will the Taoiseach tell us when it will be debated?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Taoiseach has answered the Deputy's question.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

He did not answer it. He passed it off to the Whips.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I ask the Deputy to allow Deputy Crawford to speak.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I would like an answer to my question.

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Dublin West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

This is not yet a one-party State.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Deputy Gilmore is clearly not familiar with parliamentary procedure. The Whips meet once per week to discuss various issues. The Chief Whip puts forward what he would like to do and the others have their say before he sets out the schedule.

Photo of Eamon GilmoreEamon Gilmore (Dún Laoghaire, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Chief Whip does what the Taoiseach tells him.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

If Deputy Gilmore thinks I stay up all night worrying about the Chief Whip's actions, I do not.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Deputy Kitt gets his way every time.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Sixty million euro.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I will ask the Chief Whip, who has listened to Deputy Gilmore, to take account of the Deputy's concerns.

Photo of Seymour CrawfordSeymour Crawford (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

In light of the fact many families are being disadvantaged by the lack of rights to residency and that the waiting time for the processing of applications is more than two years, when will the immigration and residence Bill be debated in this House?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It will be brought in in 2007.

Photo of Tommy BroughanTommy Broughan (Dublin North East, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

In the entertaining comedy turn given by the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government, Deputy Roche, at Citywest last weekend, he referred to major changes in the area of microgeneration. Given that the CER is carrying out a consultation process at present, will legislation be introduced on these changes before the general election?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

To which Bill does the Deputy refer?

Photo of Tommy BroughanTommy Broughan (Dublin North East, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I was referring to a microgeneration Bill. My point is that no legislation will be brought. The Minister told us we would all have windmills and solar panels on our roofs.

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Don Quixote.

Photo of Tommy BroughanTommy Broughan (Dublin North East, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That will not happen before the next Government enters office.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

A large number of people are already receiving grants for solar panels, so they do not require legislation.

Photo of Tommy BroughanTommy Broughan (Dublin North East, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

What about windmills?

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I read somewhere that the Minister for Education and Science completely misunderstands my party's position with regard to the Irish language.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That does not arise on the Order of Business.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

It does arise. I ask the Taoiseach to consult ——

Photo of Mary HanafinMary Hanafin (Minister, Department of Education and Science; Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Will Deputy Kenny clarify whether he intends to abolish compulsory Irish?

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Minister's remarks were beneath a person of her stature.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Does the Deputy have a question appropriate to the Order of Business?

Photo of Mary HanafinMary Hanafin (Minister, Department of Education and Science; Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I take it the Deputy intends to abolish compulsory Irish.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I would be delighted to get into the trenches with the Minister on this matter.

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

The Deputy should not allow himself to be provoked.

Photo of Mary HanafinMary Hanafin (Minister, Department of Education and Science; Dún Laoghaire, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Aon uair.

Photo of Enda KennyEnda Kenny (Leader of the Opposition; Opposition Spokesperson on Northern Ireland; Mayo, Fine Gael)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Am ar bith. I ask the Taoiseach to inform the Chief Whip that I would like a debate in due course on the Harris report which, as the Minister is aware, concerns the quality of spoken Irish in the primary school system.

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I will consult the Whip.

Photo of Michael D HigginsMichael D Higgins (Galway West, Labour)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I wish to inquire about two United Nations conventions. On 7 September 2000, or more than six years ago, Ireland signed the optional protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography. On 13 December 2000, Ireland signed the protocol to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking in persons, especially women and children, which was supplementary to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organised Crime. When is it proposed for Ireland to ratify these two basic conventions to protect the rights of the child?

Photo of Bertie AhernBertie Ahern (Taoiseach; Dublin Central, Fianna Fail)
Link to this: Individually | In context

I will investigate the matter and revert to the Deputy on it.

Jerry Cowley (Mayo, Independent)
Link to this: Individually | In context

Under legislation, a proposal which offers a reasonable and sensible way for resolving the Corrib gas conflict is an independent public inquiry into the location of the Corrib gas project. What is the Taoiseach's view of the matter?

Photo of Rory O'HanlonRory O'Hanlon (Cavan-Monaghan, Ceann Comhairle)
Link to this: Individually | In context

That does not arise on the Order of Business.