Dáil debates

Wednesday, 14 September 2022

3:10 pm

Photo of Jack ChambersJack Chambers (Dublin West, Fianna Fail)
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I move:

Wednesday's business shall be: - Motion re Approval of Reappointment of Members of the Legal Services Regulatory Authority (without debate)

- Motion re Ministerial Rota for Parliamentary Questions (without debate)

- Motion re Report of the Committee on Standing Orders and Dáil Reform re Amendment of Standing Orders relating to pre-legislative scrutiny of Government Bills (without debate)

- Statements on the IBRC Commission of Investigation Report (not to exceed 200 minutes)

- Motion re Proposed Approval by Dáil Éireann of the Institutional Burials Act 2022 (Director of Authorised Intervention, Tuam) Order 2022 (to conclude within 55 minutes) Private Members' Business shall be the Motion re Measures to Assist with Household Bills, selected by Sinn Féin.

Thursday's business shall be: - Motion re Houses of the Oireachtas Commission Statement of Estimates 2023 (without debate)

- Motion re Houses of the Oireachtas Commission authorisation on legal proceedings (without debate)

- Statements on An Bord Pleanála (not to exceed 210 minutes)

- Water Services (Amendment) (No. 2) Bill 2022 (Second Stage) (to adjourn, if not previously concluded, at 10.32 p.m.)

- Regulated Professions (Health and Social Care) (Amendment) Bill 2022 (Second Stage) (if reached, to adjourn, if not previously concluded, at 10.32 p.m.) Private Members' Business (being taken instead of Thursday evening business) shall be the Motion re Security of Electricity Supply, selected by the Regional Group.

Proposed Arrangements for this week's business:

In relation to Wednesday’s business, it is proposed that: 1. the ordinary routine of business as contained in Schedule 3 to Standing Orders is modified to the following extent:
(i) the Statements on the IBRC Commission of Investigation Report shall not be interrupted to take private members’ business at 6.12 p.m.; Provided that private members’ business shall instead be taken on the conclusion of Motion re Proposed approval by Dáil Éireann of the Institutional Burials Act 2022 (Director of Authorised Intervention, Tuam) Order 2022, with consequential effect on the time for the adjournment of the Dáil, which may be later than 10.30 p.m.;

(ii) topical issues pursuant to Standing Order 37 shall be taken on the conclusion of private members' business; and

(iii)Parliamentary Questions to a member of the Government other than the Taoiseach, pursuant to Standing Order 46, shall not be taken;
2. the Motion re Approval of Reappointment of Members of the Legal Services Regulatory Authority shall be taken without debate;

3. the Motion re Ministerial Rota for Parliamentary Questions shall be taken without debate;

4. the Motion re Report of the Committee on Standing Orders and Dáil Reform re Amendment of Standing Orders relating to pre-legislative scrutiny of Government Bills shall be taken without debate;

5. the Statements on the IBRC Commission of Investigation Report shall not exceed 200 minutes, with arrangements in accordance with those agreed by Order of the Dáil of 30th July, 2020, for that time, and members may share time; and

6. the Motion re Proposed approval by Dáil Éireann of the Institutional Burials Act 2022 (Director of Authorised Intervention, Tuam) Order 2022 shall, if not previously concluded, be brought to a conclusion after 55 minutes and the following arrangements shall apply:
(i) the order of speaking and allocation of time shall be as follows:
- opening speech by a Minister or Minister of State – 10 minutes;

- speech by a representative of Sinn Féin – 10 minutes;

- speeches by representatives of the Labour Party, Social Democrats, People-Before-Profit-Solidarity, the Regional Group, the Rural Independent Group and the Independent Group – 5 minutes per party or group; and

- a speech in response by a Minister or Minister of State – 5 minutes; and
(ii) members may share time.
In relation to Thursday's business, it is proposed that: 1. the ordinary routine of business as contained in Schedule 3 to Standing Orders shall be modified to the following extent:
(i) no private member’s Bill pursuant to Standing Order 102 or motion for a Committee report pursuant to Standing Order 160 shall be taken, and private members’ business pursuant to Standing Order 159(1) and Standing Order 169 shall be taken for two hours on the conclusion of the Statements on An Bord Pleanála;

(ii) further Government business may be taken on the conclusion of private members’ business, with consequential effect on the time for adjournment of the Dáil, which may be later than 9.27 p.m.; and

(iii) the Dáil shall adjourn on the conclusion of topical issues pursuant to Standing Order 37, which shall be taken either at 10.32 p.m. or on the conclusion of Second Stage of the Regulated Professions (Health and Social Care) (Amendment) Bill 2022, whichever is the earlier;
2. the Motion re Houses of the Oireachtas Commission Statement of Estimates 2023 shall be taken without debate;

3. the Motion re Houses of the Oireachtas Commission authorisation on legal proceedings shall be taken without debate; and

4. the Statements on An Bord Pleanála shall not exceed 210 minutes, with arrangements in accordance with those agreed by Order of the Dáil of 30th July, 2020, for 200 minutes, following which a Minister or Minister of State shall be called upon to make a statement in reply which shall not exceed 10 minutes, and members may share time.

Photo of Seán Ó FearghaílSeán Ó Fearghaíl (Ceann Comhairle; Kildare South, Ceann Comhairle)
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Is that agreed?

Photo of Mattie McGrathMattie McGrath (Tipperary, Independent)
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It is not agreed. The Ceann Comhairle will be aware that I wrote to him and the Business Committee on behalf of the Rural Independent Group a number of weeks ago, seeking an honest, frank and serious debate about the energy crisis facing us because of the ineptitude of the Government and the point-blank refusal to cap the prices and take on the utility companies. The Government has refused to bring any of our own oil onshore. The Government promised to bring in liquefied natural gas, LNG, during the last election. It has totally ignored the plight of the public. There is a perilous situation for many families. Schools and small and medium-sized businesses cannot keep going. This is part of the anarchy that the Government is creating. We are not accepting the Order of Business, as I said at the Business Committee meeting last Thursday. We oppose it and will call a vote on it.

Photo of Richard Boyd BarrettRichard Boyd Barrett (Dún Laoghaire, People Before Profit Alliance)
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Before the summer recess, I repeatedly asked the Taoiseach to facilitate a debate on the housing and homelessness crisis, particularly the review, or lack of a review, of the income thresholds for social housing, which means that thousands of families are being thrown off housing lists and denied housing assistance support. Over the last few days, there has been a drip-feed of reports that five counties will see increases in thresholds but the vast majority of the country will not. That means that tens of thousands of people in need of housing support and of social housing will be denied it. Week by week, more people will be thrown off those lists. I ask, at the very least, for the Minister to come in to give us that review, its details, and a report on Housing for All one year into the strategy.

Photo of Peadar TóibínPeadar Tóibín (Meath West, Aontú)
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We need a debate on the specific actions that can be taken to alleviate the pain and pressure put on families by the cost-of-living crisis. Spain and Portugal have an exemption from the EU rules and have reduced VAT on fuel. They have also been given permission by the EU to decouple non-gas-generated electricity from gas-generated electricity and the related prices.

We will also have a situation this year where the Government will increase carbon taxes on people. It is absolutely wrong that carbon taxes are still going up annually when people cannot afford to keep the lights on and keep the heat on.

3:20 pm

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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I have already outlined that the Government is going to intervene in a cost-of-living package and in the budget in two weeks' time-----

A Deputy:

Christmas is coming too.

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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-----in respect of the energy crisis. There are two debates. The Dáil is meeting at 2 p.m. today and will meet tomorrow. There are two Private Member's debates on energy, each of which I believe is of two hours' duration. There are plenty of opportunities for Deputies to articulate their views and for the Government to respond with regard to energy measures. There is debate-----

Photo of Mattie McGrathMattie McGrath (Tipperary, Independent)
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Where is the leadership?

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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There is a debate this week on energy. The Deputy has called for a debate on energy and there is a debate on energy this week. There are two debates.

Photo of Mattie McGrathMattie McGrath (Tipperary, Independent)
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Where are the plans?

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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We have also just had Leaders' Questions, which were almost predominantly on energy. Three out of the four leaders raised the issue of energy, quite correctly given the scale of the crisis. I have no issue with that. Therefore, I do not believe it is fair to try to suggest we are not debating it or discussing it in the two days we have allocated this week.

Photo of Mattie McGrathMattie McGrath (Tipperary, Independent)
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You are not doing anything.

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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On Deputy Boyd Barrett's points, again, we have two days to get things done. We can certainly-----

Photo of Richard Boyd BarrettRichard Boyd Barrett (Dún Laoghaire, People Before Profit Alliance)
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Can I get certainty for next week?

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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Hold on, please. We can certainly look at considering time and allocating-----

Photo of Richard Boyd BarrettRichard Boyd Barrett (Dún Laoghaire, People Before Profit Alliance)
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You are considering-----

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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I have always facilitated Deputy Boyd Barrett in terms of debates.

Photo of Richard Boyd BarrettRichard Boyd Barrett (Dún Laoghaire, People Before Profit Alliance)
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Not on this one.

Photo of Micheál MartinMicheál Martin (Taoiseach, Department of An Taoiseach; Cork South Central, Fianna Fail)
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I always have. We have had plenty of debates.

Question put:

The Dáil divided: Tá, 83; Níl, 58; Staon, 0.


Tellers: Tá, Deputies Jack Chambers and Brendan Griffin; Níl, Deputies Mattie McGrath and Michael Healy-Rae.

Cathal Berry, Colm Brophy, James Browne, Richard Bruton, Peter Burke, Mary Butler, Thomas Byrne, Jackie Cahill, Dara Calleary, Ciarán Cannon, Joe Carey, Jennifer Carroll MacNeill, Jack Chambers, Niall Collins, Patrick Costello, Barry Cowen, Michael Creed, Cathal Crowe, Cormac Devlin, Alan Dillon, Stephen Donnelly, Paschal Donohoe, Francis Noel Duffy, Bernard Durkan, Damien English, Alan Farrell, Frank Feighan, Peter Fitzpatrick, Joe Flaherty, Seán Fleming, Norma Foley, Noel Grealish, Brendan Griffin, Simon Harris, Seán Haughey, Martin Heydon, Emer Higgins, Heather Humphreys, Paul Kehoe, John Lahart, James Lawless, Brian Leddin, Michael Lowry, Marc MacSharry, Josepha Madigan, Catherine Martin, Micheál Martin, Steven Matthews, Paul McAuliffe, Charlie McConalogue, Michael McGrath, John McGuinness, Aindrias Moynihan, Michael Moynihan, Jennifer Murnane O'Connor, Verona Murphy, Hildegarde Naughton, Malcolm Noonan, Darragh O'Brien, Joe O'Brien, Jim O'Callaghan, James O'Connor, Willie O'Dea, Kieran O'Donnell, Patrick O'Donovan, Fergus O'Dowd, Roderic O'Gorman, Christopher O'Sullivan, Pádraig O'Sullivan, Marc Ó Cathasaigh, Éamon Ó Cuív, John Paul Phelan, Anne Rabbitte, Neale Richmond, Michael Ring, Eamon Ryan, Brendan Smith, Niamh Smyth, Ossian Smyth, David Stanton, Robert Troy, Leo Varadkar, Violet Wynne.

Níl

Chris Andrews, Ivana Bacik, Mick Barry, Richard Boyd Barrett, Martin Browne, Pat Buckley, Holly Cairns, Matt Carthy, Sorca Clarke, Joan Collins, Michael Collins, Rose Conway-Walsh, Réada Cronin, Seán Crowe, Pa Daly, Pearse Doherty, Paul Donnelly, Mairead Farrell, Kathleen Funchion, Gary Gannon, Johnny Guirke, Marian Harkin, Danny Healy-Rae, Michael Healy-Rae, Brendan Howlin, Gino Kenny, Martin Kenny, Claire Kerrane, Pádraig Mac Lochlainn, Mary Lou McDonald, Mattie McGrath, Denise Mitchell, Imelda Munster, Catherine Murphy, Paul Murphy, Johnny Mythen, Gerald Nash, Carol Nolan, Cian O'Callaghan, Richard O'Donoghue, Louise O'Reilly, Darren O'Rourke, Eoin Ó Broin, Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire, Ruairi Ó Murchú, Aodhán Ó Ríordáin, Thomas Pringle, Maurice Quinlivan, Patricia Ryan, Seán Sherlock, Róisín Shortall, Bríd Smith, Duncan Smith, Brian Stanley, Peadar Tóibín, Pauline Tully, Mark Ward, Jennifer Whitmore.

Question declared carried.