Tuesday, 8 October 2019
An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business
Martin Conway (Fine Gael)
We do not get as much of it as we would like. One thing I want to particularly welcome is the increase in funding for An Garda Síochána and the whole area of justice. We spend a lot of time in this House dealing with justice legislation such as the Judicial Council Bill and the various other components of the justice portfolio, on which I have had the privilege to lead on behalf of the Fine Gael group in this House. It is good to see an extra almost €1 billion going into justice, to see the commitment to continue recruiting another 700 members of An Garda Síochána and to see the resources being made available to establish the Judicial Council and other improvements in the justice area. For too long we have had too many negative headlines to do with justice and its implementation. It is great to see that justice is not on the front pages for the wrong reasons any more. We have seen a classic example of how, in spite of a very difficult fiscal manoeuvring, the Minister, Deputy Flanagan, was able to deliver additional resources in the area of justice. This Brexit budget is a difficult one. I want particularly to commend the Minister, Deputy Donohoe, who has navigated very successfully the needs of continuing to grow and develop our economy and has at the same time ensured that we are as Brexit-ready as we can be, and that we are controlling the things that we can control as best we can.He has done a good job in recent times. I look forward to our engagement this afternoon and to analysing in great detail the various elements of the budget. In due course, the Leader should invite line Ministers to this House to provide details on their increased budget spend and to discuss Brexit and what controls they have put in place in their particular areas. It would be a useful exercise in the national interest to have engagement in the Seanad with line Ministers on their Brexit preparations.