Thursday, 9 March 2017
Business of Dáil
Pursuant to Standing Order 27E(8) and further to the orders of the Dáil on Tuesday, it is proposed that No. b4, motion re amendment of orders of reference of the Joint Committee on the Future Funding of Domestic Water Services, be taken now without debate, followed by No. c4, motion re proposed approval by Dáil Éireann of the draft Commission of Investigation (Certain matters relative to a disability service in the South East and related matters) Order 2017 (revised). With regard to c4, the following arrangements shall apply. The proceedings, if not previously concluded, will be brought to a conclusion after 40 minutes, and the speeches, which will be confined to a Minister or a Minister of State and the main spokespersons for the parties or group, or a Member nominated in their stead, shall not exceed five minutes each. The motion on the commission of investigation will be followed by the voting bloc, and questions to the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine will be taken on the conclusion of the Second Stage proceedings of the Misuse of Drugs (Supervised Injecting Facilities) Bill 2017 or at 4.40 p.m., whichever is the earlier.
With respect to the proposition on the Joint Committee on the Future Funding of Domestic Water Services, there is simply no reason we should be delaying the work of the committee. We could have and should have finished this week. This is just kicking the can down the road because we cannot get an agreement between Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael. We are fundamentally opposed to this part of the proposition.
It is definitely not agreed because we should be having a debate here today if the Government wants to postpone further the deadline for the water committee. Second, we should not be doing it at all. I guess we have had more than 50 hours of discussion in committee. We have had years of discussion in society and the matter was an important issue during the general election campaign. We have enough evidence to decide to get rid of water charges once and for all. It must be asked, and people are asking this, why we need to postpone things again. People are rightly concerned that this is an opportunity to create space for some sort of backroom deal between Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil. That is why people will come out onto the streets on Saturday, 8 April. At the very least, we need a debate today on the further postponement.
In fairness, the water committee has been making substantial progress in a number of areas. There are approximately seven or eight headed areas. We have been making substantial progress with options papers that have been given to us by the Chairman, Senator Ó Céidigh, in regard to public ownership, public engagement and transparency, conservation measures and other issues. The Chairman has sought the advice of the Oireachtas legal counsel in regard to the 2007 Act. As do all my colleagues, I acknowledge the work and hours put into the water committee. I assure the public that we are making significant progress but we are awaiting the advice of the independent legal adviser to the Oireachtas specifically in regard to the 2007 Act.
Bobby Aylward, Maria Bailey, John Brassil, Declan Breathnach, Pat Breen, Colm Brophy, James Browne, Richard Bruton, Peter Burke, Catherine Byrne, Thomas Byrne, Jackie Cahill, Dara Calleary, Seán Canney, Ciarán Cannon, Joe Carey, Pat Casey, Shane Cassells, Lisa Chambers, Marcella Corcoran Kennedy, Michael Creed, John Curran, Michael D'Arcy, Jim Daly, John Deasy, Pat Deering, Regina Doherty, Stephen Donnelly, Paschal Donohoe, Andrew Doyle, Bernard Durkan, Alan Farrell, Frances Fitzgerald, Michael Fitzmaurice, Seán Fleming, John Halligan, Simon Harris, Michael Harty, Seán Haughey, Danny Healy-Rae, Michael Healy-Rae, Martin Heydon, Brendan Howlin, Heather Humphreys, Paul Kehoe, Billy Kelleher, Alan Kelly, Seán Kyne, John Lahart, James Lawless, Marc MacSharry, Charlie McConalogue, Helen McEntee, Finian McGrath, Mattie McGrath, Michael McGrath, John McGuinness, Joe McHugh, Josepha Madigan, Catherine Martin, Kevin Moran, Aindrias Moynihan, Michael Moynihan, Margaret Murphy O'Mahony, Eugene Murphy, Denis Naughten, Hildegarde Naughton, Tom Neville, Michael Noonan, Jim O'Callaghan, Kate O'Connell, Fergus O'Dowd, Kevin O'Keeffe, Fiona O'Loughlin, Frank O'Rourke, Jan O'Sullivan, Willie Penrose, Anne Rabbitte, Michael Ring, Noel Rock, Shane Ross, Brendan Ryan, Eamon Ryan, Seán Sherlock, Brendan Smith, Niamh Smyth, David Stanton, Robert Troy, Leo Varadkar.
Gerry Adams, Mick Barry, Richard Boyd Barrett, John Brady, Tommy Broughan, Pat Buckley, Joan Collins, Michael Collins, Catherine Connolly, Ruth Coppinger, Seán Crowe, David Cullinane, Clare Daly, Pearse Doherty, Dessie Ellis, Kathleen Funchion, Séamus Healy, Gino Kenny, Mary Lou McDonald, Denise Mitchell, Imelda Munster, Catherine Murphy, Paul Murphy, Carol Nolan, Eoin Ó Broin, Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin, Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire, Aengus Ó Snodaigh, Jonathan O'Brien, Louise O'Reilly, Thomas Pringle, Maurice Quinlivan, Róisín Shortall, Bríd Smith, Brian Stanley, Peadar Tóibín, Mick Wallace.