County Management Bill, 1939—Committee (Resumed).

Thursday, 14 March 1940

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 79 No. 7

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An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  With regard to the County Management Bill, certain officials easily identifiable are, if this Bill becomes law, to be appointed county managers. I suggest to the Dáil the advisability of discussing the policy of the appointment of the holders of certain offices, and not these men personally. Any discussion of their personal merits or demerits might lead to a most unseemly debate. I assume I have the House's agreement to act on this understanding.

Question proposed:“That Section 1, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  This section is now amended by the adoption of the Minister's amendment, which means that the person who occupies the position of manager in the City of Dublin will also be manager for the County and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. On the last day we put to the Minister the advisability of keeping this office in the hands of one person for Dun Laoghaire and the metropolitan city. While there are certain services common to the three areas affected, the county services are usually very dissimilar to those of the City or the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. There is the further point that, so far as the present occupant of the position of city manager is concerned, he is inexperienced as regards the county, and I do not see how it is likely in the future that you will get an experienced person accustomed to county council business and also accustomed to or experienced in metropolitan business. As I have said, the services are dissimilar, the circumstances of the ratepayers are dissimilar, the circumstances of the people living in each of the two separate administrative districts are dissimilar. In all the circumstances, I think that before we reach the Report Stage the Minister ought to reconsider this matter.

[824] There are, of course, some services which are common perhaps to the three districts—not many, but some. There are joint bodies to deal with those. There would, in the normal course of business, be considerable strain on the manager's time in connection with the meeting of the different bodies. If, in addition to that, some dissatisfaction arises, either in connection with the administration of the manager or some of the services, it is likely that the occupant of this office, whoever he will be, either now or in the future, will be blamed for what is really an infirmity in our proposals. In the earlier stages that may be so serious as to occasion criticism of the system generally. All these considerations appear to me to warrant reconsideration of the matter by the Minister in the interests not only of the principle of managership, but also of the individual appointed and the persons whom he is going to serve.

It is advisable that, in the early stages of this new experiment, every effort should be made to eliminate causes of friction. One of the things likely to give rise to that is if, on a certain day, some of these bodies are holding meetings at the same hour when the question of their relative importance will arise. It will not do to send the assistant manager to either of the bodies; they will take umbrage at that. It is common knowledge that there is a certain, I hope friendly, rivalry between those bodies. At one time it could be hardly described as that, as they were particularly anxious to have litigation. That phase has passed. But it is still more than likely that this question of the meetings will arise and that one of those bodies will not be willing to give way. Then there is the other question of the dissimilarity of services, apart from those that are common services. In addition, there is surely a sufficient amount of work to keep one man well occupied in the municipality and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire without adding on the work of the county as well.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I should like to add my plea also to that made by Deputy Cosgrave and ask the Minister to reconsider the position in so far as this [825] section, as amended, is concerned. It will be apparent to anybody who has any experience of local administration that the city manager has been set an almost impossible task. I suggest that the principle introduced in the amendment is entirely new and cuts across the principle contained in the Bill as originally introduced. The title of the Bill is a “County Management Bill”. So far as this section is concerned now, it is an entire reversal of the county managerial system, because we have here a city manager who is going to manage the county and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. He is called the city and county manager. One could understand the Minister, in the frame of mind which is reflected in this Bill, calling this gentleman, whoever he will be, the county and city manager. But “city and county manager” seems to me entirely new so far as the general principle of the Bill is concerned. I suggest to the Minister, as I did when the amendment was before the House, that it will be absolutely impossible, no matter what a man's abilities are, for him to look after the county, the city, and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. As I pointed out repeatedly, rural and urban matters are entirely different things in so far as local administration is concerned. I think it will take any man, even a superman, all his time to look after the interests of the City of Dublin, apart altogether from the Dun Laoghaire Borough and the County Council of Dublin. I think the Minister would be well advised to reconsider his attitude in this matter before the Report Stage of the Bill, as has been suggested to him by Deputy Cosgrave. If the Minister does not do that, this Party, at all events, feels so strongly about it that they will vote against the section.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I would like to add my plea to what has been said by Deputies Cosgrave and Corish. I understood the attitude of the Minister to be this—that whoever holds these three positions, namely, the city managership, the Borough of Dun Laoghaire managership, and the county managership, will be assisted by sub-managers. Still I think the Minister [826] will realise that all the responsibility rests finally on the one man; the one thing that cannot be divided is the very heaviest portion of the burden, namely, the responsibility. That is the strongest reason against the step which the Minister is now proposing to take. The city manager may devolve a certain amount of routine duty on to the shoulders of the sub-managers. He may indicate or set aside one of these sub-managers to look after the affairs of the Borough of Dun Laoghaire and another to look after the affairs of the Dublin County Council, but he must in any important dispute or in any important matter bear the full responsibility himself. You are setting up county managers for the whole country, and one of the strong arguments that we, who were in favour of this Bill, brought forward for the Bill was the desire of not heaping on any man or body of men more work than was reasonable. I think the strong argument in favour of the Bill itself was that as a result of the growing complications and the growing duties of the county councils it was not really possible for the old system to work satisfactorily. Unnecessarily, as it seems to me, I fear that the Minister is deliberately going, by this proposal, to encounter somewhat the same difficulty. The city manager cannot divide the responsibility with anybody, and the Minister knows that in the long run that is the heaviest burden that falls on the manager. It is not the routine work nor the intellectual work that most people find trying. It is the responsibility. That cannot be divided. You will have one man responsible for the local affairs of almost one-fifth of the whole population of the country. I would ask the Minister to reconsider this. It is worth reconsidering in the interests of the administration of the city, the county council and county borough.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I agree with what Deputy Cosgrave said, that the responsibility is a big one. I also admit that this is an experiment. I believe it will work all right, but I cannot be absolutely certain that it will. There is an amendment that these others will be appointed as assistant managers. [827] Some one of them may know more about the work of the county than perhaps a city manager would, and the city manager will have to be guided a good deal by the advice he will get. I do admit that the ultimate responsibility must rest on the city and county manager. I do not agree with Deputy Corish that this Bill is a reversal of the whole scheme. It is more an extension of the scheme, not a reversal of it. I have given a good deal of consideration to this matter. I consulted with the city manager as to how it might work, and while I say that it is an experiment, I feel convinced that it will work all right. If we can get an assistant manager for the county council who has specialised knowledge in county administration, then I think that a good deal of the [828] work and a good deal of the responsibility will be taken off the city manager. However, I will consider the matter further between now and the Report Stage. Still, I think that as an experiment it is worth trying.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The worst thing about the Minister is that he is so reasonable that it is very hard very often to oppose him.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I am strongly against the principle outlined in the section.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Does the Deputy desire to challenge a vote on it?

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Yes.

Question put: “That Section 1, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breathnach, Cormac.
Brennan, Martin.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Loughman, Francis.
McCann, John.
McDevitt, Henry A.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Laurence J.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Bennet, George C.
Broderick, William J.
Brodrick, Seán.
Browne, Patrick.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T.
Daly, Patrick.
Esmonde, John L.
Everett, James.
Giles, Patrick.
Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
Keyes, Michael.
McFadden, Michael Og.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Neill, Eamonn.
O'Sullivan, John.
Reidy, James.

“This Act shall come into operation on such day as the Minister shall by Order fix for that purpose.”

Mr. Brennan:  I move amendment No. 6:—

In line 43, after the word “day,” to insert the words “and in such county or counties.”

The object of the amendment is to ensure that the Minister will have power to bring the Act into operation in certain counties while omitting other counties.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is, I think, quite clear that the Bill must come into operation at the same time in all the counties. It is not an adoptive measure. You cannot bring it into operation in one county and omit to bring it into operation in another county.

Mr. Brennan:  That, I think, will be the first step towards disaster—to bring the Bill into operation in the whole of the State on the same morning. The Minister ought to bring the Bill into operation gradually. I do not think that there is any interlocking of counties which would prevent that. I should like to see the Bill tried out by degrees. Perhaps it would take six months or twelve months to bring it into operation generally. I do not know why the Minister thinks it better to bring the Bill into operation on a single day in all the counties. Some people who have given serious study to the matter think that a departmental sub-committee should be set up to place particular counties on the right road before they start to operate under this measure. I do not think that the Minister can be too careful in getting this Bill under way. It is an experimental Bill.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  What I said in that connection referred to Greater Dublin.

Mr. Brennan:  The Bill is purely experimental, and I think it is a mistake to bring it into operation generally on the same day.

[830]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There would be a good deal of criticism as to the county you would try the Bill on if you were to bring it into operation in one county and not in another.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I will give you a county on which to try it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Other counties might make the same offer, while others might disagree. When this Bill becomes an Act, it is proposed to ask the Local Appointments Commissioners to set up machinery for selection of county managers. Subsequently a Local Government Bill will be introduced to reduce the number of members of these councils. I indicated that on Second Reading, and at the time there was some objection that it was like putting the cart before the horse.

When these new councils are elected, the appointed day will be fixed. It will be, perhaps, the first day on which they meet after the election to appoint their chairman, vice-chairman, and so on. On that day the county manager would take over. There is no reason why, since we have accepted the principle of the Bill as applying to all counties in the State, you should hold back with one and go on with another. You are only going to create a lot of agitation. Some counties might try to hold on to the old system, and you may have a good deal of feeling about it if you put it into operation in one county and do not in another. From the scheme of things, there is no reason why it should not apply to the whole lot at the same time.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  The whole trouble is that the executive authority will rest with the manager, and your consultative body will have no power whatever.

Mr. Brennan:  Who, in fact, will appoint the first manager?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The manager will be appointed on the recommendation of the Appointments Commissioners.

Mr. Brennan:  By the county council?

[831]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It will be the same as any other appointment on the recommendation of the Appointments Commissioners.

Mr. Brennan:  These things do not dovetail at all. Apparently it is the county council that appoints the manager. The Minister tells us that on the first day on which the new county council meets, the manager will take over. But there is no manager at that time at all, and there is no arrangement made to put the manager into office.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  They may have the recommendation before them that day.

Mr. Brennan:  Does the Minister not think that there is some preparation necessary for a measure of this kind?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There will be ample time for them to make preparations.

Mr. Brennan:  You will have the officials of the county council carrying on to the date of the county council meeting. The county council will meet, but they will not have a manager, and no arrangements have been made for the carrying on of the work by the manager. That ought to be done, and some time ought to be given in that connection. The Minister now tells us that this will all be brought into operation on the one day, but there will be no managers on that day. The thing does not appear to me to make sense.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  There is a lot in what Deputy Brennan has said. When a person is recommended by the Appointments Commissioners to a local body, it has been the procedure up to this that there is a communication sent from the Appointments Commissioners, backed by the Minister, indicating that a certain person has been selected. It is not necessary for the council concerned to ratify that appointment?

Mr. Brennan:  To make the appointment.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  To ratify or make the appointment. If, as the Minister says, he comes into office the first day the new council sits, I presume he will [832] take the Chair, but what authority has he to take the Chair unless the county council sit beforehand and accept the ratification and carry out the appointment of the manager? What right has he to take the Chair unless he is appointed by the county council?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Look at Section 4 (2):

“Whenever an appointment is required to be made to the office of county manager for a county or to the offices of county manager for each of two grouped counties, the Minister shall request the Local Appointments Commissioners to recommend to him a person for appointment to such office or offices and those Commissioners shall select and recommend to the Minister under the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 (No. 39 of 1926), one and only one person for such appointment, and there upon the person so selected and recommended shall become and be appointed by virtue of such recommendation...”

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Does that not cut across the appropriate section of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act?

Mr. Brennan:  Does it cut across Section 5?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It does cut across it.

Mr. Brennan:  It completely nullifies it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It would, so far as this appointment is concerned.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  There are two questions before the House. There is the general one of how the whole Act is to be operated in different counties —that is what has occupied our attention for the last ten minutes. There was the original amendment of Deputy Brennan, which is a different question altogether, namely, whether the Act ought to come into force on the same day in different counties. There is this to be said in favour of Deputy Brennan. The people in a number of [833] counties want this Bill and a number of counties do not want it. There is a reason, a stronger reason perhaps in some counties than in others. The Minister, with the powers he has, can occasionally abolish a county council and put a commissioner there. I can see his point of view that he does not want to be put into that position so far as this Bill is concerned, to be compelled to use a discretionary power, to pass sentence, as it were. He does not want to take up the line that he might like to adopt with reference to putting the Act into operation, say, in a county like Kerry. He naturally wants to curtail the powers of that council without being compelled to say what he thinks about that council. I am quite willing to offer him both the county council and the county board of health of my own County of Kerry to start with and he can experiment there if he wishes. There is something to be said for this from an experimental angle. I think that in some respects the Act of 1926 was experimental. The setting up of two authorities, such as a county board of health, which has spending powers, and a county council, which has taxation powers, was experimental. I doubt if the experiment was, from that point of view alone, a success. Perhaps the Minister might take power to bring the Act into operation on different days. This does not bind him to do so, but on further consideration he might think it advisable to have the power. With regard to the other question, that comes in more appropriately on Section 4. Surely, under the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act it is the county council that makes the appointment?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  All you can do here is to tell the county council what the law is. The county council may meet and may refuse, as I have understood local bodies have done in the past as regards the recommendations of the Appointments Commissioners. First of all, the manager is not appointed and, secondly, the county council may refuse to appoint him and you have a deadlock. If there is a lacuna there, [834] it might be well to meet it so as to see that there is not a gap and that there will be no deadlock in starting. The point raised by Deputy Brennan and supported by Deputy Corish has a lot to be said for it. It is the local body and not the commissioners or the Minister, that, technically, as a rule makes the appointment. All you can do in this Bill is to lay down what law the local people ought to follow. As the Bill stands, I do not think you get over the difficulty.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  The all-important thing is that when a recommendation is made by the local appointments commissioners and is backed by the Minister, is the man appointed then or is it necessary for the local body to accept the recommendation, or otherwise? It usually is accepted and I do not want to make any point on that. But if it is necessary for the local body to make the appointment and proceed with the recommendation, has the county council any locus standi to proceed at the first meeting? I suggest it has not, because this cuts across the procedure up to now, or what is contained in the Local Authorities Act. I want to make the position clear and I am not arguing for the sake of arguing.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I know that so far as the procedure up to the present is concerned, it does cut across the Local Authorities Act. In the case of this particular appointment, this is the way the person is to be appointed. When he is recommended to the council, he becomes the manager from the day appointed.

Mr. Brennan:  I think that the whole thing is perfectly absurd. I have an amendment down to delete certain words from sub-section (2) of Section 4, my object being to make the thing understandable, and to make it fit in with Section 5. If sub-section (2) of Section 4 were to read: “When the first appointment is required to be made” it would make sense, but as it is worded in the Bill it cuts across Section 5 completely, so that no county council will ever get the opportunity of complying with Section 5.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Can a section in one Act repeal a section in another Act? Unless [835] the section in the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act is repealed it will lead to terrible confusion if operated with the provisions in this Bill.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I think that what the Deputy asks can technically be done, but it is a dangerous thing to do. You may have a number of legal arguments raised in the courts if you do it. What is usually done is to repeal the former Act. The points raised are really machinery points, and perhaps the Minister might think it well to look over them.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The section in the Local Employees Act, by the power taken in sub-section (1) of Section 4, is being repealed by the subsequent provisions of this measure. It is being repealed to the extent set out here. In other words, whenever the Local Appointments Commission recommends a person for the position he automatically becomes the manager.

Mr. Brennan:  For all appointments in the future?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

Mr. Brennan:  If the Minister is right then Section 6 “of the said Act” does not apply—that is, Section 6 of the Local Employees Act, because that section makes other arrangements for the manager's appointment.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Sub-section (1) of Section 4, as the Deputy will see, says:

“Subject to the subsequent provisions of this section”.

Mr. Brennan:  If the Minister is referring to Section 5, I submit that does not get him out of the difficulty.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Of course it does. The Local Employees Act is being amended here by sub-section (1) of Section 4. The latter sets out the way it is being amended.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I think the Minister will admit that it is a rather unusual way of repealing a section in another Act.

[836]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There are different ways of dealing with it.

Mr. Brennan:  But that does not get the Minister out of the difficulty that he has in sub-section (2) of Section 4. That sub-section says that “whenever an appointment is required to be made”, it shall be made in a particular way. My submission is that it actually prevents the operation of Section 5.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Not at all. Sub-section (1) of Section 4 sets out how Section 5 is being amended.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  We learn that up to a certain point the Minister provisionally appoints, but in sub-section (1) of Section 5 we are told that it is the county council that appoints. Subsequent provisions, however, take the appointment altogether out of the hands of the county council. What, then, is the meaning of sub-section (1) of Section 5, which says: “Every person appointed by the council of a county to be the county manager”, and so on?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  If Deputies will turn to amendment No. 34, which is to be moved later by me, they will see that I am proposing to delete from the sub-section referred to the words “by the council of a county”, because the person recommended by the Appointments Commissioners shall be the person appointed.

Mr. Brennan:  He is not appointed by anybody. He becomes appointed when he is selected.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  The representatives of the public bodies know where they are now. They should try to come together and smash this Bill.

Mr. Brennan:  Apart from the amendment, I think it is a great mistake for the Minister to compel his Department and himself to bring the Act into operation in every county on the one day. I believe he should leave himself free in that matter. He may find later that it would make for better administration not to do what he proposes in the Bill. Therefore, I suggest to him that he should not tie himself to [837] the proposal of bringing the Act into operation in every county on the one day.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No, I cannot do that as it stands. That was the whole principle on the Second Reading, whether it should be applied to the whole country or not.

Mr. Brennan:  But not on the one day.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  What is the purpose of the amendment when you can bring it into operation on the one day?

Mr. Brennan:  My point is that you cannot.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I can assure the Deputy that unless we are prepared to put it into operation in all the counties we will not do so.

Mr. Brennan:  That is where the Minister is unduly flattering himself. He may be able to put it into operation in 25 counties and be held up in one. He should give himself more liberty.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That will be a matter of administrative machinery.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Section 2 agreed to.

(1) There shall be in every county a county manager for such county who shall be called and known as the ................................ County Manager (with the name of the county prefixed).

(2) The several counties (in this Act referred to as grouped counties) mentioned in the First Schedule to this Act shall, for the purposes of this Act, be grouped in the manner set forth in that Schedule and, in the case of each such group, one and the same person shall be the county manager for each of the counties included in such group.

[838] (3) The county manager for a county shall be an officer of the council of that county.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Amendments Nos. 7 and 59 deal with similar matters.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  On behalf of Deputy Norton, I move amendment No. 7:—

In sub-section (1), page 4, line 3, to delete the words “county manager” and substitute the words “chief executive officer”.

We are of the opinion that the title here should be amended. It may be confused with that of a vocational officer under an education committee. Perhaps the Minister would agree to bring in a suitable amendment on the Report Stage. The title “county manager” looks as if he was boss of the county. The term seems to be an offensive one. My view is that a man in this position, instead of being manager for the county council, is manager of the county council.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The title may not be palatable in some ways. I often thought that it was not, perhaps, the best one in the first instance. I have not succeeded in thinking of any other name. However, I do not think it matters very much, as people will get to know the name. Deputy Norton wants to have the words “chief executive officer” inserted, and if Deputies turn to amendment No. 101 to the Schedule they will see that he wishes the manager to act under the control and direction of the council. He is not concerned any more than I am about the name. We had that principle on the Second Reading, and there is no use in going back on it. The words “chief executive officer” are used in connection with vocational education and would clash with that. What Deputy Norton has in mind is that he wants to make this change and to have amendment No. 101 consequential.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Will you consider the suggestion I made?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I considered it before, and on thinking it over I can see nothing wrong with the name.

[839]Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Do you consider that he should be, say, manager for County Wexford?

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  From the point of view of the Bill, would you call him governor-general?

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  County manager sounds something like that.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  That governs amendment No. 59. Amendments Nos. 8 and 99a are somewhat similar.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I move amendment No. 8:—

To delete sub-section (2).

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Is it proposed that there will be no joint counties, or that they shall be scheduled?

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  The purpose is to allow each county to stand by itself.

Mr. Brennan:  There will be no grouped counties?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  In getting grouped counties we gave consideration to population and to the number of institutions in a county like Sligo-Leitrim, Tipperary North Riding and South Riding, Carlow-Kildare. If you compare the number of institutions in some of these counties with the institutions in some large single counties you will find that there is a very fair distribution. Some Deputies have been speaking to me about grouping, and they more or less want each county to stand by itself. That might be desirable in some ways, but the manager will be manager for each county separately. When acting for Carlow he is county manager for Carlow, and in Kildare county manager for Kildare.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  You do not anticipate that assistant managers will be necessary in each county?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I have grouped them. There will be three in Cork and one in Tipperary. I put into the Bill where the assistant managers will be. On the [840] Second Reading it was stated that we might have assistant managers all over the country. The best way to meet that position is to put it into the Bill.

General MacEoin: Information on General Seán MacEoin  Zoom on General Seán MacEoin  I could understand grouping if the counties were similar in their activities. There has been a good deal of comment about the difference in administrative activities between the City of Dublin and the County of Dublin. It is similar in Westmeath and Longford. These counties are as different as chalk to cheese as far as agricultural activities are concerned. If the manager attends a meeting of Westmeath County Council he will find that the problems there are of a certain kind and altogether different from those in County Longford. He will want to be a man of outstanding ability to be able to work both counties and not be influenced by either of them. I suggest that the amendment should be accepted. While I have the greatest respect for Westmeath, for historical reasons the unit of Longford should be maintained. A constituency is established and there is nothing in common between the people of Longford and the two tails that were attached to it from Roscommon and Westmeath. It is a bad thing to group counties that have not similar activities, and, in addition, the historical aspect should be maintained.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Is it necessary to schedule and to tie your hands when this is the only grouping that there will be? Possibly the Minister thinks it is the wisest thing to do. Is it worth while having a joint manager? Is there such a lot saved? When you consider the saving of his salary, which is practically all you will have, will you not lose more possibly in efficient management of the two separate counties? I remember on one occasion, when we had a Bill going through the House, I thought it would never be possible to link Kildare and Carlow together. We had grave doubts as to the motives behind the splitting up. Some uncharitable people said it was a jerrymandering Bill. On second thoughts, apparently, another branch of the Local Government Department [841] and another Minister reversed that particular verdict. But Carlow now is not split up and given to three different counties. It is only subordinated at the moment.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I think it is the best way we can do it. We considered the population and the institutions, and where they were situated. Take Carlow and Kildare. The population is 92,334 and the valuation £503,676.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  How does that compare with Wicklow?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Wicklow is 58,569. The valuation is £310,407. I think we might take a better example than Wicklow.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  I think it is a good example.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Take Wexford. In Kildare and Carlow you have 92,344; Wexford, 94,245; Roscommon, 77,566; Monaghan, 61,289; Mayo, 161,349. As well as that, you have to consider a number of local public bodies in the way of urban councils, etc. In Carlow you have the mental hospital for Carlow and Kildare. Then you have the poor law institutions: a county home in Carlow; a county home in Athy; a county hospital in Nass, a district hospital in Carlow, a district hospital in Muinebeag, a district hospital in Tullow, and a fever hospital in Carlow. In the same way, you have the institutions serving Longford and, I think, Westmeath. You have a mental hospital in Mullingar. There is a county home in Longford, a county hospital in Mullingar, a county hospital in Longford, and a district hospital in Athlone. Some historical reason, or some feeling that counties that have been separate should be amalgamated may have given rise to the impression that counties grouped in the Bill are being amalgamated into one county, but there is no intention to amalgamated such counties. The County Longford will remain as it is, a separate unit, and Westmeath will also remain separate; and the manager, when acting in Longford, will be manager for Longford, [842] and when acting in Mullingar will be manager for Westmeath.

General MacEoin: Information on General Seán MacEoin  Zoom on General Seán MacEoin  If we want to get hold of him in Longford, we will have to go to Mullingar.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  You can telephone him. He is bound to attend the meetings.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  The only objection I might have against this is, in the event of an assistant manager being appointed to the manager. In that event it would be better to have two separate managers.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There is no assistant manager considered necessary at present. It is not being put into the Bill. We put in the assistant manager where it was considered that an assistant manager would be necessary. Some statements were made on Second Reading, that as we were taking power to appoint assistant managers we were going to have them all over the place. To meet these statements, we have put into the Bill the places where assistant managers will be appointed.

Mr. Brennan:  Have you not also reserved the right to appoint assistant managers in other places? You have not deleted that section.

Prof. O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  It is a case of dual personality, which is a serious mental disease.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I suppose this governs amendment No. 10?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Amendments Nos. 10 and 100. The Deputy might consider whether they are met by amendment No. 47. Deputy Curran's amendment is in a different category from those named by the Minister.

Prof. O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Deputy Curran's amendment is really to the schedule.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  It prepares the way for an amendment to the schedule. Deputies might look at the final paragraph of amendment No. 47.

[843]Mr. Bennett: Information on George Cecil Bennett  Zoom on George Cecil Bennett  That will be part of Deputy Curran's case.

Prof. O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I do not think this amendment rules amendment No. 10.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  I do not think so. Amendments Nos. 10 and 100 would go better with amendment No. 47.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not suggest that at all. I am only saying that if I do [844] not accept the amendment to divide these counties, we would have the same position with regard to the others. However, it is a different point.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  It raises a different point. It would govern amendment No. 99a.

Question put: “That the sub-section proposed to be deleted stand.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breathnach, Cormac.
Brennan, Martin.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Corry, Martin J.
Crowley, Tadhg.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Loughman, Francis.
Lynch, James B.
McCann, John.
McDevitt, Henry A.
McEllistrim, Thomas.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Laurence J.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Brennan, Michael.
Broderick, William J.
Brodrick, Seán.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Coburn, James.
Cole, John J.
Corish, Richard.
Daly, Patrick.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Esmonde, John L.
Everett, James.
Fagan, Charles.
Giles, Patrick.
Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
Keyes, Michael.
MacEoin, Seán.
McFadden, Michael Og.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Sullivan, John.
Reidy, James.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 9:—

Before sub-section (3), page 4, to insert a new sub-section as follows:—

(3) The office of the Dublin City Manager and the office of Dublin County Manager shall always be held by one and the same person.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Will not that come up again on this section?

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  That is covered by the debate on the first amendment.

[845]An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Yes, the House agreed to debate on amendments Nos. 1, 3, 9, 31, 33, 36, 39, 47, 58, 60, 62, 63, 86, 87, 88 and 99. Possibly amendment No. 50 is consequential on No. 47.

Amendment No. 9 agreed to.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  On behalf of Deputy Curran I move amendment No. 10:—

To add at the end of the section a new sub-section as follows:—

(4) For the purposes of this section the North Riding of County Tipperary and the South Riding of County Tipperary shall each be a county.

Here are two county councils, and you propose to amalgamate them. One of the points raised in debating Deputy Norton's amendment, No. 8, was this— I think I understood the Minister to look upon the matter sympathetically —that there would not be much good in having one man filling the county managership of Carlow and the county managership of Kildare if you had to appoint assistant managers. But that is precisely what you are doing in the case of Tipperary. You are going to appoint a joint manager for the two Ridings, or at least you are saying that the same person is the same manager for the North Riding and the South Riding, though you have two county councils and though it ought to run as two counties. Yet, when you turn to amendment No. 47, the Minister's own amendment, you have to appoint an assistant manager who again suffers from dual personality, because the same man would be assistant manager for the North Riding and the South Riding. You gain very little, it seems to me, in that particular instance. You have a twofold salary, and I presume there must be some reason for the division of that county into two, North and South, functioning as two county councils. What is gained by having one man manager for each of these when you have to appoint another official under him to help him to carry on the work? I put it to the Minister that you lose a great deal more than you gain by putting this particular [846] county into the schedule. As a result of putting it into the schedule you have to appoint an assistant manager.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  This is a grouping that on sentiment and every other ground seems to be warranted. You have a joint mental hospital and a joint library service, and you have what is known as one county, so that, if sentiment were involved, there would be no objection to amalgamating the two.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  It would appear to be a matter for Tipperary.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  A Deputy from County Tipperary has put down an amendment.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  He spoke to me, and I told him that I thought I could not accept it.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Perhaps Deputy Fogarty could tell us whether he would prefer to have a manager for the North Riding and a manager for the South Riding, or have one manager for the whole county.

Mr. A. Fogarty: Information on Andrew Fogarty  Zoom on Andrew Fogarty  We should prefer to have the whole county under one manager.

Mr. Loughman: Information on Francis Loughman  Zoom on Francis Loughman  I tried to get the opinion of a number of people in the county, and I could not get anybody to take an interest in the matter at all. It seems to me that the majority of the people are satisfied with the Minister's arrangement, although I would like to see separate managers for the North and South Ridings.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Do the bulk of the people know anything about it?

Mr. A. Fogarty: Information on Andrew Fogarty  Zoom on Andrew Fogarty  The area is no greater than that of Greater Dublin and the county, which have one manager.

Mr. Brennan:  But you will have two persons—one as manager and the other as assistant manager. Would it be more desirable to have two managers than to have a manager and an assistant?

[847]Mr. L. Walsh: Information on Laurence Joseph Walsh  Zoom on Laurence Joseph Walsh  The same would apply to Dublin City and County.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  That withdrawal governs amendment No. 100.

Question proposed: “That Section 3, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  It came as a bit of a shock to us in Dublin to find that the biggest local authority in the country was to be amalgamated, by means of a Government amendment, with the county and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. This amendment, with a dozen or so others, was debated the other evening, and it was not clear what the issue was.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  The issue was stated clearly, that the whole matter should be decided on amendment No. 1. The House so agreed.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I was not finding fault with the way you put it, but rather with how we understood it.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  The Chair is not responsible for that.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I had a doubt as to the order, but I am not going to challenge that now. We have brought in the City of Dublin by an amendment. I think that that is objectionable and that sufficient thought has not been given to the matter nor sufficient provision made. We have in the city the biggest managerial appointment in the country.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Is the Deputy aware that there was a debate on this matter in the House to-day?

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I propose to raise quite a new point. If Dublin City manager is to be taken, in part, out of the City of Dublin and is to divide himself up, according to the relative importance of the areas and the volume of work, between the county and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire, will not the city suffer? He will have two assistants—one in the county and one in the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. One will sit, I presume, [848] in the county council office, Parnell Square, and the other in the Town Hall, Dun Laoghaire. Surely if the county and the Borough of Dun Laoghaire require two assistant managers, the manager in the City Hall should have, at least, one, if not two, assistant managers? The Minister appreciates the big job there is to be done in attending to the city finances. A debt of over £11,000,000 has to be managed. The sinking fund calls for special technique on the part of specialised officers. If, for purely county work, an assistant manager is necessary—I hold there should be a manager —surely there ought to be at least two assistants in the City Hall, having regard to the valuation and the volume of work. Where we are a mixed body, the ratio is four to one. If you were to act on that ratio, you would have four in the city to one in the county. I do not want, however, to make a point as to the number. I want to urge the principle that the city requires at least an assistant manager to look after the city work and give freedom to the manager to perform his functions in relation to the county and the borough of Dun Laoghaire. I would go further and suggest to the Minister that there should be a deputy manager in the City Hall. Before this amendment was inserted, the Bill provided for three managers. One, of course, would be a superior appointment to any other managerial appointment in Ireland. I think if the intention is to put the county and city into one, the Minister should consider at a later stage the question of making provision for a deputy manager. He knows the opposition there was to this amalgamation from the city side, purely on technical grounds—the difficulty of the city authority handling so much of an undeveloped area. The manager will have under his control the whole of the county which, from an urban point of view, is undeveloped, and a terrible lot of technical work, difficult work, will arise, and he will want deputies to help him to deal with the different outlooks in the city, in Dun Laoghaire, and in the county. He will want deputy managers for each of those three bodies.

[849] I suggest that the Minister might consider a deputy manager and an assistant manager as well. After all, cost is more a name than anything else, because there will be senior officials with salaries practically equivalent to managerial salaries and it would be just as well if they were vested with authority. Very little more, if any more, remuneration would be required and I am sure the whole machinery of management in the city and the subordinate management in the county would work more smoothly and be more efficient if the Minister would adopt that suggestion.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  We have to remember that if there is an appointment in the case of Dublin County and the secretary there is appointed to the job of assistant manager, there may be a secretary needed for the county. It does not follow because somebody is recommended by the Appointments Commissioners and appointed in that way that the city and county manager is going to leave these people in the same positions as before—that is, in charge of the county and Dun Laoghaire. It will be a matter for the manager to allocate the duties in the most equitable way he can. I am not prepared to ask the House to do anything more than make provision for two assistant managers, one for the county and the other who is already in Dun Laoghaire. We have to bear in mind that this is only experimental. All we are doing now is laying the foundation for something that may be done afterwards in the way of development towards a greater Dublin, if that is considered advisable.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Am I to understand from the Minister that the two assistant managers will have to do the work of the city as well as of their present areas?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  They may have. I do not know how the work will be allocated.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Will the city and county manager have a free hand in that allocation?

[850]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Certainly, it is a matter for him to allocate the work.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Does the Minister not see that there is a danger there of superseding the senior officials who are in the City Hall? If there is going to be a change there must be equity in the change. There are men who have given 30 and 40 years' service to the biggest local authority in Ireland—a local authority as big as half of them put together. It is hardly fair and you cannot expect efficiency if you are to amalgamate that with smaller authorities and, perhaps, give officials in the smaller authorities seniority over the officials in the big authority. It is not fair. It is difficult for me to discuss this matter, because I am a member of the three authorities and I know the officials. I could say they are all friends of mine and I am their friend and it is a delicate matter for me to discuss here. I ask the Minister to reconsider the point. Does he hold out any hope?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Is there not a danger of unfairness?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  All the appointments will be made on the recommendation of the Appointments Commissioners. Take the existing city manager. He becomes county manager. Take the man in Dun Laoghaire: He becomes assistant manager; but the other is on the recommendation of the Appointments Commissioners.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I think we can take it that the secretaries of all county councils will automatically become county managers?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not know.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  As I read the Bill, the question of the Appointments Commissioners is just a matter of form.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not know. In a good many cases there are men over age. I do not know what way the Appointments Commissioners will approach this. I cannot anticipate what way they will approach it.

[851]Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  The general impression is that automatically the secretaries of county councils will become county managers.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  They will certainly get the preference if they are suitable, but the Appointments Commissioners are to be the judges of that.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  It will be the exception if they are not, to put it at its lowest. Is the Minister not convinced of the need of an extra office of that nature in the City of Dublin?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I am not, yet.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Is there any hope that he will be before the Bill goes through?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I would not say that.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Will the Minister accept an amendment on the Report Stage?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not think so.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  That means that the hope is gone.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Then the Minister has set his back against this, and he has flouted the opinion that was expressed in the evidence given on behalf of the Dublin Corporation before the Greater Dublin Tribunal. Instead of the city having the manager's services wholetime, he is to be taken out into undeveloped areas and expected to devote himself to the work to be done there. These outer areas of the city are to have an assistant manager, but the densely populated city area is only to have, as one may put it, a sort of part-time service from the county and city manager. I remember that 30 years ago, when I was in the Civil Service, I had great ambitions, but they were rudely shattered.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  You are better off now.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I am better off than to be in the City Hall, and have my hopes, at the end of my official career, dashed to the ground by having some outside person put over my head. I put it to the Minister that this is not playing the game with the officials in the City Hall—that another man should [852] be brought in and put over their heads.

Mr. L.J. Walsh: Information on Laurence Joseph Walsh  Zoom on Laurence Joseph Walsh  Would the Minister tell the House whether the position of those officials will be worsened in any way by the change proposed in this Bill?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  I have no objection to the idea of joint counties, provided we have not an assistant manager. In the event of an assistant manager being considered necessary, would the Minister be prepared to insert a provision ensuring that two independent managers will be appointed? Take the case of Carlow-Kildare. The manager will probably reside in Kildare, and if he is not able to attend the meetings in Carlow the people there feel that they have some grievance. I think it would lead to greater harmony if, in a case where it was felt necessary to have an assistant manager, that two independent managers should be appointed.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Supposing it did become necessary to appoint an assistant manager in the case referred to by the Deputy, that would not relieve the manager of his responsibility.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  I know, but Kildare is a much bigger place than Carlow, and the people in Carlow may feel that the manager is not devoting as much time to the work there as he should. They may resent his sending his assistant to the meetings there. I agree that the manager cannot be in two places at the one time.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  In the case of Dublin, when the manager is away on holidays, or for some other reason, an official deputies for him. Are we to understand that when this Bill is in operation an outside assistant manager must be brought in to deputise for the manager?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That is so. I would remind the Deputy that there is no such thing as a deputy manager. I assume that if the manager were ill the assistant manager would act for him. With regard to the point raised by Deputy Hughes, I would remind [853] him that, on an amendment to be moved later, it is provided that in cases where an assistant manager, such as he has in mind, is to be appointed, the appointment cannot be made until there has been first of all consultation with the county council.

Dr. Hannigan: Information on Joseph Hannigan  Zoom on Joseph Hannigan  Suppose that through incapacity, or for some other reason, the county and city manager for Dublin is absent, are we to understand from the Minister that all his duties will be undertaken by the assistant manager, or by a specially appointed deputy?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  By the assistant manager.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  The more we discuss this the more serious the position seems to become. Take the last statement made by the Minister. Suppose an assistant manager is brought in who has not the mentality or outlook to make a suitable decision bearing on some city matter, yet, temporarily at all events, he is in full control, and can make a decision according to his own views. That is not fair to the City of Dublin. I think the assistant manager should be appointed from the city. Not only that, but he should be a senior assistant who has been associated with the city's efficient administration under the managerial system. Would the Minister do in the case of his own business what he is proposing in this Bill—to bring in a man who had not the same experience as the senior officials, and place him over their heads, men of experience who have served in the city for 25, 30, or 35 years?

I would press on the Minister to consider selecting one assistant manager from among the City Hall staff. I know what the officials there have had to deal with. They have had more experience than the officials employed by any county council or local authority in Ireland, more than is usually found amongst senior officials employed by local authorities. My suggestion will cost practically nothing. I put it forward on business grounds and on the grounds of efficiency. I hope the Minister will see his way to accede to it, and select the first assistant manager [854] from among the senior officials in the City Hall. The county and city manager should have an assistant of that sort at his elbow for consultation when big matters bearing on administration arise, as well as to have him available during his own absence on holidays or at other times. I appeal to the Minister to reconsider that point. It does not make for efficiency or loyalty and will not encourage the younger staffs in the Dublin Corporation or in any other council to give of their best, if there is a feeling that their best will not be appreciated.

Mr. A. Byrne:  The question put by Deputy Belton to the Minister is one to which, if he had notice of it, he might not have given the answer he did. When the Deputy asked if the city manager was sick who would take his place, the Minister led the House to believe that one of the assistant managers from the county or Dun Laoghaire, both of whom have less service in public life, would act. The Minister's Department may be aware that if the city manager is sick at present he appoints men of senior service in the corporation to take his place, men who have served Dublin for 30 or 40 years. He usually appoints the city law agent. He could appoint the city treasurer, the city accountant, or the housing secretary, all of whom are splendid officials and would be an ornament and a great asset in Government service. Are these four men to be passed over by the city manager? Will he have to send to the county for junior men to act for him? The Minister would be breaking down all system of promotion, fair play, seniority and good service in that way. All these are splendid men who have served the city well, not one of them having less than 25 years' service under, I should say, a splendid city manager.

I am satisfied that if the city manager had a choice he would prefer to nominate one of these men in his place, instead of sending to the county where the officers may know something about Dublin but nothing compared to others who have had such long service in the city. This proposal creates a feeling of discontent amongst permanent [855] officials, that they are going to get no chance. I ask the Minister to reconsider the point. He should leave the city manager in the position he is in now, to be allowed to select those he thinks best to represent him in the interests of the city, and not to be forced to take men from the county or from Dun Laoghaire. I do not know anything about the manager in Dun Laoghaire but I think he has short service, seeing that the present city manager came from Dun Laoghaire, and was only appointed a year ago. Is the man in Dun Laoghaire to become city manager and to deputies without having to refer to the Appointments Commissioners? I appeal to the Minister to reconsider the matter in the interests of the public service.

Mr. Brennan:  According to my reading of Section 12, the City Manager will have that power notwithstanding what the Minister says.

Dr. Hannigan: Information on Joseph Hannigan  Zoom on Joseph Hannigan  In the absence of the City Manager his duties will be undertaken by one Assistant Manager, and I take it that means that the City Manager would operate from some offices in the City Hall. Who would be appointed to carry on the Assistant Manager's duties while he was acting in the city?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The Assistant Manager would be in Dun Laoghaire, and I do not know what arrangements would be made, whether he would have an Assistant City Manager, or an Assistant Manager working from Dun Laoghaire. There must be co-operation between the Manager and the Assistant Managers. They will get to know the work. I can only indicate that where there is an Assistant Manager he would seem to be the obvious person to be appointed. There is nothing compulsory about it. I do not know that there is any necessity for what we heard about Dublin, and the great danger of anyone coming in from outside. We must remember that the gentleman appointed in Dun Laoghaire was appointed by the Appointments Commission against, I believe, very strong competition. The City Manager, I [856] understand, came from Dun Laoghaire. If you got a man from Dun Laoghaire fit to run the whole city, it is pretty obvious that you could get a man to act for a few days or weeks. This matter has been discussed before, and I thought we could get away from it now.

Mr. Byrne:  The Minister did not give any hope to the permanent officers I mentioned. They are city officials who could act for the City Manager.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I will not deal with names.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I had no names in mind when I raised the matter. In his statement the Minister has somewhat queered the position as I understood it the last day when dealing with amendment No. 1. As I understood, he assured the House that these three administrative units would remain intact. Now, he does not know what the manager might do. He might bring in an assistant manager to the City Hall, and run all from there.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not know.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  What power is there to give the city manager that option? The Report of the Greater Dublin Tribunal has not yet been approved by this House. If the city manager is given power to run the city, the county and Dun Laoghaire, then, without telling this House, the Government is adopting the report of the Tribunal which, I say, is entirely wrong and out of order. That was never contemplated within the framework of the Bill as introduced, and as passed on Second Reading. This is trying to get the report of the Greater Dublin Tribunal in by a side wind, without putting it before the House or the people of Dublin City or County. This matter has been agitating Dublin City and County for years, and the Commission that inquired into it cost thousands of pounds. Since the report was made the Government funked implementing it. They say they are not implementing it now, but in reality they are.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I wish Deputies [857] would get away from all this misrepresentation. This matter has been debated time and again and, on the last occasion the Bill was before the House, I indicated that there would be an allocation of duties. Will Deputies deny that?

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  What?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  A re-allocation of duties.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Did the Minister not say that the three administrative units would remain intact?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes, and I say that now.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  How will they remain intact if the manager is vested with authority to take an assistant from Parnell Square and an assistant from Dun Laoghaire and bring them to the City Hall?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  We want them to work in co-operation with the manager.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  In other words, you want to work the city, the county and Dun Laoghaire as one administrative unit?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I see no difference. It was made clear by the Minister on the last occasion that the county would be run as it has been run, under the control of an assistant manager, who was under the supervision of a general manager. The same would apply to Dun Laoghaire and to the City of Dublin, but the three units would be one. Now, the County Dublin is going to be deprived of this assistant manager in certain eventualities. The same thing may apply to the Borough of Dun Laoghaire. What is the need then for considering or adopting the report of the Greater Dublin Tribunal? I do not think that it is a fair way of going about it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is not a fair way of debating it.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I submit that it is a fair way. I know what I am talking about, because I have participated in the [858] management of the three administrative units. I know the feeling about the Greater Dublin Tribunal, and, from my own business experience, I know the technical difficulties in the way of administering an urbanised area with a large undeveloped area included in it. The Minister is aware that every technical officer in the Dublin Corporation was strenuously opposed to an increase in the undeveloped area of the City of Dublin as it would be too costly and more than the city could bear. Now we have the whole county thrown in without giving it consideration.

The comparisons that the Minister made were rather invidious. I am sure that there are dozens of officers in the corporation who would not take a county managership or a Borough of Dun Laoghaire managership because they consider themselves senior. Now they are going to be superseded. There are strikes going on and I do not want to refer to them. But, if senior officials in the service have any association through which they can speak, I think they should be talking. I hope the Minister will see the equity of this. It is very invidious and delicate to discuss this matter. Members of this House know all these officers personally and it is very difficult to discuss this matter. But surely we can say this on the broad principle, where men have entered the service at the bottom and, after 25 or 30 years, have climbed to the top and have a distinguished career behind them, they should be considered and get their share of what is going. From the point of view of efficiency of administration in Dublin, those officials in the City Hall should be considered and they should get at least equal status with the men outside.

The Minister mentioned that the present city manager came from Dun Laoghaire. The Minister knows that before he went to Dun Laoghaire he was a commissioner in the City of Dublin for five or six years. He had experience that no other man in Ireland had. Before he became a commissioner, he had been a local government inspector for years. Look at the experience that that gave, and the opportunity for developing an individual character to take decisions on his [859] own. As one of three commissioners he ran the City of Dublin for five or six years, and ran it well. Surely that man should not be compared with an ordinary official, and the Minister knows that, on his heels for the managership of the City of Dublin, was an official of the corporation. Those officials are now going to be superseded by people who did not even think that they had a ghost of a chance of that job if they applied for it. I will get into trouble with all these officials by talking in this way, and I do not like to have to do it. As a matter of fact, if the Minister gave me the choice of deciding between them I would not take money and make a decision between them all. They are all excellent officials. I cannot pay too high a tribute to the man in the county council, the man in Dun Laoghaire and the officials in the City Hall.

I think the Minister, who has not had close association with them and who is charged with a major responsibility here, should devise some means [860] of dealing with this which would be more equitable from the point of view of the officials, and, from the point of view of efficiency. Put in a man who is well versed in and associated all his life with the requirements of the City of Dublin, or give the city manager power to nominate a man, or the city council power to nominate a man, if he sees a difficulty in naming anybody, but let the city get somebody. The Minister has named a man in the Bill, but that man is only about two years there. Surely if a man has had 25 or 35 years' service with the Dublin Corporation he is either worthy of being named or he is not. Personally, I do not think anybody should be named in the Bill, but the office from which it is proposed to fill the vacancy could be named. If the Minister would consider an assistant manager from the City Hall and leave the selection of that individual either to the present manager or to the city council, I think he would be satisfying everybody and he would be making for efficiency in administration.

Question put.

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breathnach, Cormac.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Crowley, Tadhg.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Loughman, Francis.
Lynch, James B.
McCann, John.
McEllistrim, Thomas.
MacEntee, Seán.
Maguire, Ben.
Meaney, Cornelíus.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Bridget M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Laurence J.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Broderick, William J. [861]Coburn, James.
Cogan, Patrick.
Corish, Richard.
Daly, Patrick.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Everett, James.
Fagan, Charles.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Brodrick, Seán.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred. [862]Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
Keyes, Michael.
Lynch, Finian.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

4.—(1) The office of county manager shall be an office to which the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 (No. 39 of 1926), applies, save that Section 5 of the said Act shall not apply to the said office and Section 6 of the said Act shall apply to the said office subject to the subsequent provisions of this section.

(2) Whenever an appointment is required to be made to the office of county manager for a county or to the offices of county manager for each of two grouped counties, the Minister shall request the Local Appointments Commissioners to recommend to him a person for appointment to such office or offices and those commissioners shall select and recommend to the Minister under the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 (No. 39 of 1926), one and only one person for such appointment, and thereupon the person so selected and recommended shall become and be appointed by virtue of such recommendation to such office or each of such offices as on and from such day as the Minister shall by order appoint in that behalf.

(3) In relation to the appointment of the first county manager for a county or for each of two grouped counties, the following provisions shall, in so far as they are applicable, apply and have effect in regard to the selection by the Local Appointments Commissioners of a person to be recommended by them for such appointment, that is to say:—

(a) in the case of the first county manager for a single county, if the county secretary of such county is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend such county secretary, and, in the case of the first county manager for each of two grouped counties, if the county secretaries for each of those counties are both of them candidates and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend whichever of those county secretaries they consider to be the more suitable, but if one and only one of such county secretaries is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend that one county secretary;

(b) if no person is recommended in pursuance of the foregoing paragraph of this sub-section and the secretary of a board of health for a county health district in the county or either of the grouped counties (as the case may be) is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall, if only one such secretary is a candidate and suitable, recommend that one such secretary or, if two or more such secretaries are candidates and suitable, recommend whichever of those secretaries they consider to be the most suitable;

(c) if no person is recommended in pursuance of the foregoing paragraphs of this sub-section, and a county secretary (other than a county secretary to whom paragraph (a) of this sub-section applies) is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall, if only one such county secretary is a candidate and suitable, recommend that one such county secretary or, if two or more such county secretaries are candidates and suitable, [863] recommend whichever of those county secretaries they consider to be the most suitable;

(d) if no person is recommended in pursuance of any of the foregoing paragraphs of this sub-section, and the secretary of a board of health (other than a secretary of a board of health to whom paragraph (b) of this sub-section applies), is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall, if only one such secretary is a candidate and suitable, recommend that one such secretary or, if two or more such secretaries are candidates and suitable, recommend whichever of those secretaries they consider to be the most suitable.

In this sub-section the word “suitable” means possessing the requisite qualifications for appointment to the relevant office, and being, in the opinion of the Local Appointments Commissioners, suitable in all other respects for such appointment;

the expression “county secretary” does not include a temporary county secretary;

the expression “secretary of a board of health” does not include a temporary secretary of a board of health.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move:—

11. In sub-section (1), page 4, line 15, to delete the word and figure “Section 6” and substitute the words and figures “that Sections 6, 8, and 9”.

Section 6 refers to the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926, relating to the method of appointment; 8 relates to selection by competitive examination and 9 to the selection for appointments requiring professional experience.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Will the Minister explain as a result of the amendments proposed what is the position, not merely telling us what the [864] section refers to, namely, these references to the method of appointment, and competitive examinations, and also tell us what the procedure will be now when these amendments which stand in his name are put through? For instance, who will actually make the appointments? There is an amendment No. 13 which proposes to strike out the words “become and” and there is left only the words “shall be appointed”. There is no indication anywhere in the Bill, so far as I know, as to who it is makes the appointment. The Minister does not make it. The Minister himself already made that clear to us that he does not make it. We saw from the previous discussion that in the county council the Minister does not make it and yet the thing is to be done. How is it to be done and by whom is it to be made? There is another matter which I should like to raise now. I did not like to intervene in the discussion on the last section, though it arose out of what was said there. You have provision in this Bill that, in the case of the first appointments of managers, preference shall be given to county secretaries. You have provided for certain amalgamations now, as a result of amendments we have passed. Take the case of secretaries of councils of counties which are to have one manager or the case of the City of Dublin and the county which are to have one manager. Is any preference to be given in the appointment of assistant managers to the secretaries of county councils in these areas?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  They are in a worse position, so far as this Bill goes, than county secretaries anywhere else. All county secretaries except those of two counties having the same manager, or the City and County of Dublin are undoubtedly given a certain advantage in this Bill to the extent that they are to be given a preference in these appointments. I shall later ask the Minister what that preference means. I should like to know also who is to appoint the assistant managers. [865] As the Bill stands, I do not know where the power of appointment is to be.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The Local Appointments Commissioners make a recommendation on the application of the Minister. When they have made that recommendation, the Minister fixes the date on which the recommendation takes effect, although the Minister does not actually make the appointment.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Does anybody make it?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is made on the recommendation of the Appointments Commissioners.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  By whom? On the facts we are in full agreement. I cannot see where the legal power of appointment rests. If the words “shall become” were left in alone it might meet the situation, but you bring in the words “shall be appointed.”

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  They become appointed by virtue of the statute. That is the explanation.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  If the word “become” were there alone I could understand it; but you have the words “shall be appointed” brought in, apparently to clarify the matter. I think that that will cause confusion.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  If I have any doubt on the matter I shall look it up between now and Report Stage.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  What about the position of the county secretaries to whom I referred?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  In the case of grouped counties, the Appointments Commissioners will recommend which of the two they deem more suitable.

[866]Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Will preference be given to the second county secretary for the position of assistant manager where such position exists?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Why?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Very few assistant managers will be appointed.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The counties in which the county secretaries are being pushed aside are important counties. The county secretary in Clare, for instance—I do not know who he is— gets a preference in the appointment of county manager for that county, but the Dublin county secretary does not get a preference in the appointment of assistant manager.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  If the Deputy appreciated what is at the back of the preference, the matter might be easily explained. The object in giving a preference to county secretaries is to make for the smooth working of the Act. I do not know what salaries will be fixed, but the position of the county secretary who is appointed county manager will not be worsened. That is obvious. Where a second county secretary goes up for the position, if he does not get the appointment, he continues as county secretary. If you make a new appointment in certain counties, where a lot of fees attach to the office of county secretary, the remuneration might not be as high for the newcomer as the remuneration of the county secretary is at the present time. I do not think that any hardship is involved in cases where you have two county secretaries. I think that their salaries are adequate—probably as high as that of a new county manager in the ordinary way would be.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The county secretaryship will be a better position than the assistant managership?

[867]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I think that it is reasonable to assume that.

Mr. Brennan:  The Minister has mentioned what clauses 6, 8 and 9 refer to. Clause 8 refers to competitive examination. Why is that put in there and taken out by the following amendment?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is left in the hands of the Appointments Commissioners whether to go on these lines or otherwise.

Mr. Brennan:  Otherwise than by competitive examination? You are putting it in in clause 8 and taking it out by the following amendment. If amendment No. 11 stands, amendment No. 12 will take out competitive examination.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The two sections go together.

Mr. Brennan:  Clause 8 embraces more than competitive examination?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

Amendment agreed to.

The following amendment was agreed to:—

12. In sub-section (2), page 4, line 22, after the word “select” to insert the words and brackets “(otherwise than by competitive examination)”.—(Minister for Local Government and Public Health).

Mr. Brennan:  I move amendment No. 13:—

In sub-section (2), line 25, to delete the words “become and”, and in line 26 to delete the words “by virtue of such recommendation”.

We have had a rather scattered discussion on this subject, but to my mind it is very important, and there is a big [868] question of principle involved. As a matter of fact, when I read the Bill for the purpose of drafting amendments, I felt that a mistake had been made in drafting either sub-section (2) of Section 4, or sub-section (1) of Section 5, which makes provision for the appointment by the county council of the county manager. I suggest eliminating the words “become and” and also the words “by virtue of such recommendation.” I had in mind that they would be appointed in the way set out under Section 5, that is, appointed by the council of a county. I find that what the Minister and his advisers have done is that they have knocked out Section 5, and now the person who is selected becomes the appointed person there and then. I wonder if we have the power to do that? I think we have not. On principle I am definitely opposed to it.

Even though the county councils and other local authorities in the past had recommendations sent down to them for the appointment, say, of a county medical officer of health, they still had the appointment and had the responsibility, even though they were obliged to appoint the one and only person whose name was sent down. The Minister may say that they would eventually have to appoint the person whose name was sent down and, consequently, it might be as well to declare him appointed before his name went down. I am opposed to that, and I am not at all satisfied that the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act of 1926 gives power in that respect. Under that Act certain arrangements are made with regard to appointments. That a person so selected and recommended is ipso facto appointed is, to my mind, reading too much into the Act altogether. I do not think we have the power to do that. As a layman I feel that is a question that possibly would be upset in law. I am consequently putting forward my amendment, which indicates that the recommendation shall be made and that the person shall be appointed in the manner which was set out in Section 5—that is, appointed by the county council.

[869]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I am opposing this amendment.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  Is the amendment being withdrawn?

[870]Mr. Brennan:  No, because I think it is a very vital matter.

Question put: “That the words proposed to be deleted stand.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breathnach, Cormac.
Breen, Daniel.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Loughman, Francis.
Lynch, James B.
McCann, John.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O'Briain, Donnchadh.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Walsh, Laurence J.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Benson, Ernest E.
Brennan, Michael.
Brodrick, Seán.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Cogan, Patrick.
Corish, Richard.
Costello, John A.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Esmonde, John L.
Everett, James.
Fagan, Charles.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Keating, John.
Lynch, Finian.
McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Higgins, Thomas F.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  The Committee will now take the amendments circulated on the supplementary list—amendments Nos. 14 to 25 inclusive.

Mr. Brennan:  I move amendment No. 14:—

In sub-section (3), pages 4 and 5, to delete paragraph (a), and substitute therefor the following:—

(a) the case of the first county managers, the said commissioners shall give preference to applications of county secretaries, where they apply and are suitable, and shall recommend the most suitable candidate.

[871] My object in putting down this amendment was that I thought the Minister was tying his hands unduly by giving a preference to the secretaries of county councils in their own counties: not alone that, but giving them an absolute right to appointment as first county managers, if suitable. If we are to have a machine that will give satisfaction it ought to be flexible, and the Minister ought to be in the position of being able to appoint the secretary of a county council in one county as manager of another county. I am not saying that occasions may not arise in which a very definite advantage would arise from doing that. You may have a secretary to a county council who is a young man and has not many family ties in that county. In another county, not far away, you may have a secretary who is a very much older man and who does not want to take on the duties of manager there. In the case of two joint counties you may have two very able secretaries to the county councils in each at the present time, but only one can be appointed as manager. The other is available, and he may be wanted as manager in a neighbouring county. I am not at all convinced that in every case the secretary to a county council would be a great success as manager in his own county. He might not. A secretary to a county council who has been an acting secretary is just one of the officials in that county and might not be the right person to be put in the position of manager over his brother officials. Managers, to my mind, are not made. They are born. The gifts that go to make a good manager are inherited, I think, and not acquired.

I admit the right of a county secretary to get a preference, but I think this section ought to be flexible enough to allow the Minister, if he so thinks fit, to go to another county for a county manager. Some provision ought to be inserted to enable that to be done. The original section sets out that, if a county secretary applies in his own county and is thought fit and suitable for the position, he is to be appointed. I would certainly give the existing [872] secretary a preference, but the Minister, I think, should not tie his hands to appoint him in his own county. I am not saying that that will not happen in most cases. Cases may arise, however, in which it should not happen, and, therefore, I think the Minister should leave the question open.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  I think that amendments Nos. 14, 15, 16, 17 and 24 can be discussed together.

Following are the amendments which appeared on the Order Paper:

15. In sub-section (3), to delete paragraph (a), in page 4 and 5, and substitute the following paragraphs:—

(a) in the case of the first county manager for a single county if the county secretary of such county and the secretary of a board of health for a county health district in the county are both of them candidates and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend whichever of those secretaries they consider to be the more suitable but if one and only one of such secretaries is a candidate and suitable the said commissioners shall recommend that one candidate;

(b) in the case of the first county manager for two grouped counties if the county secretary for each of these counties or either of them or the secretary of a board of health for a county health district in the county or either of the grouped counties (as the case may be) are candidates and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend whichever of these secretaries they consider to be the most suitable, but if one and only one of such secretaries is a candidate and suitable the said commissioners shall recommend that one candidate. —(Richard Corish, John L. Esmonde).

16. In sub-section (3), to delete [873] paragraph (a) and to substitute therefor the following paragraph:—

In the case of the first county manager for a single county if the county secretary or the secretary of the board of health or the county surveyor or the medical officer of health of such county is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend the most suitable persons among such candidates if there are more than one, and such candidate as is suitable if there is only one such candidate. —(Daniel McMenamin.)

17. In sub-section (3), to delete paragraph (a) and substitute therefor the following paragraph:—

(a) in the case of the first county manager for a single county if the county secretary or the secretary of the board of health or the county surveyor of such county is a candidate and suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend the most suitable person among such candidates if there are more than one, and such candidate as is suitable if there is only one such candidate.—(Peadar S. Doyle.)

24. In sub-section (3), page 5, to add at the end of the sub-section the words—the expression “county surveyor” does not include a temporary county surveyor.—(Michael Brennan, Daniel McMenamin.)

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I move amendment No. 15. There is another amendment, No. 19 (a), in my name.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  It is not being discussed now.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I agree. What I had in mind there was to secure that in a town or urban area with a certain population there might be a town clerk who would be found suitable for the position of county manager.

[874]Mr. Esmonde: Information on John Lymbrick Esmonde  Zoom on John Lymbrick Esmonde  Under Section 27 of the Bill county boards of health are dissolved and the Third Schedule deals with the property. The position of officers of boards of health is that they are transferred in the ordinary way to county councils. From inquiries I have made, and from my experience, a large proportion of the administrative work of local authorities is performed by the secretaries of the county councils and boards of health. They took over a considerable portion of duties performed by other bodies, which were redundant under the Local Government Act, 1925. I think the secretary of a board of health should be placed in the same position as the secretary of a county council.

Mr. Cogan: Information on Patrick Cogan  Zoom on Patrick Cogan  I support this amendment. The secretary of a board of health has much more difficult and executive functions to perform than the secretary of a county council, where the work is limited. In the other case an enormous amount of work is thrown on the secretary of a board of health. The positions should be on an equal footing. These managers will have the supervision of an enormous amount of work in the counties. The experience in the case of a secretary of a board of health is gained in the management of various institutions and in looking after officials scattered throughout the county. There are also big housing schemes, sewerage schemes, and waterworks. That experience should make the secretary of a board of health better qualified to perform the functions of a county manager than the secretary of a county council.

Mr. Brennan:  I am at sea regarding the discussion now.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  On the second amendment sheet amendments to (a) (b) and (c) have been segregated. Amendments Nos. 14, 15, 16, 17, and 24 consequentially all relate to (a) and must be discussed together since on No. 14 the question will be “That (a) stand”. It would be impossible to give a decision on each alternative.

[875]Mr. Brennan:  What appears to be conflicting is that I cannot move amendment No. 14 which has been designated (a). Following that are other amendments which include the recommendations of a selection of persons other than county secretaries. In Amendment No. 18 that is designated (b), although it is, in fact, the same as Amendment No. 16.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  The fact that your name is to the two amendments relates them to the rest.

Mr. Brennan:  The principle is involved in my amendment.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Your contention is that amendment No. 18 does not refer to (b).

Mr. Brennan:  If 16 does not refer to (b), 18 does not.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  The main amendment sheet will show that paragraphs (a), (b), (c), etc., would be deleted in two's or three's by the original amendments. The second sheet is simpler.

Mr. Brennan:  I agree.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  My endeavour was to segregate (a), (b) and (c).

Mr. Brennan:  I have spoken to amendment No. 14 and I did not bring in any outside matter such as the appointment of county surveyors or secretaries of boards of health.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  The surveyors will be on another one.

Mr. Brennan:  That was spoken to on amendment No. 17.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  There is nothing to prevent the Deputy from speaking on it now.

[876]Mr. Brennan:  I do not want to do so. I would prefer if the Minister would give his views as regarding 14. I do not think it is wise for him to tie his hands or to fetter himself. This is an experimental proposal and should be made as flexible as the Minister can make it. He may find a secretary of a county council who would make an excellent manager in another county, and he should leave the wording so that he could change a man who was a fit and proper person from the county in which he is operating to another county.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not think there would be any advantage in that even if I were to accept it. This is only intended to deal with the first managers. After we have dealt with the first managers it will be open for everybody to apply. Our only desire in trying to name the people whom it would be desirable to select for the first county managers is to secure the smooth working of the Bill. If there is a good secretary in a county, and if the Local Appointments Commission consider him suitable, although I admit he may not have as much work to do as the secretary of a board of health, he is the chief executive officer responsible for the whole county, and will be in touch with the whole county, and it you are trying to secure a smooth change over, he is the most suitable man we can see.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Will there be an age limit?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That will have to be dealt with in another Bill. That will come under the Local Government Bill, which may have some provision to deal with all officials on the local bodies. I do not think there is very much in the first point, that there should be a change from other counties. You may get a very good secretary in a county. He might be a suitable man in another county, but I do not think he would know as much about it as his own county. I know, perhaps, what the Deputy may have in [877] mind, that it would be better if we would change them from one county to another. I do not know whether that is a good or a bad principle.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  That would be bad.

Mr. Brennan:  I am not on that.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I think it would be undesirable in connection with positions of this sort. The secretary of a county council, whom I assume that Local Appointments Commissioners would accept, must certainly be somebody who they are satisfied has given satisfaction in his own county and is suitable from that point of view. As I have said, you may get a position where the secretary of a county council would know his own county and the work of his county and he would be much more valuable and suitable than somebody from outside.

Mr. Brennan:  I am entirely with the Minister in regard to giving preference to secretaries of county councils for the sake of smooth working, as they are the executive officers. But I am not convinced that in every case the secretary may even wish to remain in his own county as manager. There are in every county officials who, perhaps, are a bit lax. They have been for years under the secretary of the county council or under the board of health. He knows them, he is a local man, they are local people, there may be family connections and various things like that, and, possibly, he does not want to be manager over them.

I have discussed this with some people who are very interested. There may be, for instance, between 20 and 40 rate collectors in a county, with all of whom the secretary of the county council is on very friendly terms. Perhaps, as manager, he would like to be on different terms with some of them. We are putting this system on trial, and I do not think that we ought to do anything that would retain any bad elements. We ought to ensure from the beginning, as far as we can, that it will work. The Minister may find cases where the secretary of a county council would prefer to operate as manager in [878] some other county and might be able to do his job well, while perhaps he could not do it in his own county. I am putting the point to the Minister that, if he gives preference to secretaries of county councils, that ought to be sufficient for their purpose. Then if they desire a change, or the Minister thinks they would do better in some other county, he would be free to put them there. I am not pressing the matter; I am putting it up as a point which has impressed me strongly.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I am sure the county managers from time to time will have disagreeable duties to perform. They will have to see that those under them perform their duty. I do not think that would be a sufficient argument.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  I trust it is now clear that a decision on amendment No. 14 will govern amendments Nos. 14, 15, 16, 17 and 24.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  If a county secretary becomes a manager, will he still hold his old salary?

Mr. Brennan:  He will.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Are Deputies in possession of the revised list of amendments?

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I am. The amendment about town clerks is not covered by this amendment.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  I included all as far as feasible.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I do not want you to cover that. I want to deal with that separately. I should like to hear what the Minister has to say as to the eligibility of secretaries of boards of health.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I know that secretaries of boards of health have a large amount to do with the county councils, especially since the extension of the duties and powers of the boards of health. I think a good many of them are very hard worked and, perhaps, most of them nearly overworked. As [879] I said, the only purpose in giving the preference to secretaries of county councils is to ensure the smooth coming into operation of the Bill. As Deputies know, when the Bill is in operation boards of health will cease to exist and their duties will be transferred to the county councils. In the ordinary way, I can see that the secretary of a board of health will go with that work and occupy the same position. The Deputy may be assured that the position of a secretary of a board of health will not be worsened in any way through being taken over by the county council, if he does not succeed in getting a managership.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Take a county where there is an old man who has no desire to be manager and would prefer to retire. What is the position there? Is the secretary of the board of health to be taken into consideration?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  After the disappearance of the county secretary?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  If it is not a case of grouped counties.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  Where the secretary of the county council becomes the manager, the secretary of the board of health does not automatically become the secretary of the county council?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No. That is a matter for the manager himself, at least in this way. The secretary, when he becomes manager, can promote, just the same as a council can at present, under the Local Government (Employees) Act, somebody from his staff, or he can refer the matter to the Local Appointments Commission to select the secretary. It does not follow that it will be the secretary of the board of health or the accountant or anybody else.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  Would you not think, where you give preference to a secretary of the board of health, in the event of the secretary to the county [880] council not being an applicant for the position, that it would be a natural corollary that when you appoint the secretary of the county council as manager, the secretary of the board of health should be the secretary of the county council?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The only reason against that is that the manager, when appointed, is in control of the staff, and I do not want to put into the Bill anything that will control him in the appointment or the method of appointment of the person to become secretary. He is going to be ultimately responsible. It is going to be in his hands whether he will promote the secretary of the board of health or somebody else.

Mr. L.J. Walsh: Information on Laurence Joseph Walsh  Zoom on Laurence Joseph Walsh  What would be the position in future when such vacancies occur? Will officials have the right to apply for them?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is open to everybody to apply when a vacancy occurs after the first appointment.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  I appreciate the Minister's point, but it is rather a hardship on the secretary of a board of health if he has to go in as an ordinary clerk in the county council's office.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  He would be a very senior clerk.

Mr. Hughes: Information on James Hughes  Zoom on James Hughes  But at the same time he would no longer be an executive officer.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  He would not lose anything except in the way of prestige.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  He would probably be carrying on part of the functions over which he had control, such as the board of health, medical charities, and so on.

Donnchadh O Briain: Information on Donnchadh Ó Briain  Zoom on Donnchadh Ó Briain  If the boards of health are abolished, will the position be that the division of the work will be carried out by the person who had charge of the public health and medical charities heretofore? Will that condition continue as it has up [881] to the present? Will there be a special officer in charge of that Department under the county manager?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I assume there will. That will be a matter that the county manager will himself arrange.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Is the Deputy pressing amendment No. 14 to a division?

Mr. Brennan:  No, I am withdrawing amendment No. 14 though I am not quite satisfied with the position.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  Does this include public assistance and boards of health?

Mr. J. Flynn: Information on John Flynn  Zoom on John Flynn  On that question of the boards of health I submit to the Minister that there is very much more than the question of salary involved. The work of the secretary of the board of health is being transferred to the man appointed to take charge of each county. Where we have assistant county secretaries, what will be the position of the secretary of the board of health? Will he be a sort of senior officer, under both the manager and the assistant secretary, or will he still retain his status and his standard somewhat similar to the kind he held under the board of health? I submit to the Minister that in that type of case there is the danger of the secretary of the board of health being relegated to a very minor position altogether. I think that some provision should be made whereby the secretary of a board of health who had in his charge the main portion of the work of administration of a county heretofore, should, if anything, be appointed or transferred to a senior position. In other words, that he should have equal status, so to speak, with the manager or——

Mr. M. Brennan: Information on Michael Brennan  Zoom on Michael Brennan  Or with the Minister.

Mr. J. Flynn: Information on John Flynn  Zoom on John Flynn  What I was submitting was that the duties that were previously carried on by him should now be transferred to him.

Mr. M. Brennan: Information on Michael Brennan  Zoom on Michael Brennan  On this question of amendment No. 15——

[882]An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Is the Deputy moving amendment No. 15?

Mr. M. Brennan: Information on Michael Brennan  Zoom on Michael Brennan  I did not touch upon the question of the appointment of any person outside the county secretaries. Though I have an amendment to that effect later on I have not said a word on the question.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Amendments must be taken in sequence. Amendments Nos. 15 and 16 have not been moved.

Mr. Brennan:  I withdraw amendment No. 14. That is all that I am concerned with.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I formally move amendment No. 15.

Mr. Esmonde: Information on John Lymbrick Esmonde  Zoom on John Lymbrick Esmonde  On amendment No. 15 I want to say that under paragraph 11 of the Third Schedule there is a question of the position of the secretary to the board of health who is transferred under this paragraph of the Schedule. He becomes an officer of the council. That is all that has happened. The Schedule does not state what has happened to him.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  He would be an officer in charge of the public health section.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I assume that is what would happen to him.

Mr. Esmonde: Information on John Lymbrick Esmonde  Zoom on John Lymbrick Esmonde  The Minister stated he would be in charge of a section?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I presume that is how it would work out, but I do not know how the manager would arrange his work.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I withdraw amendment No. 15.

Amendments Nos. 16 and 17 not moved.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  The position is now that amendments Nos. 14, 15, 16 and 17 are disposed of. Amendment No. 24 is consequential on No. 17.

[883]Mr. Brennan:  I move amendment No. 18:—

In sub-section (3), to delete paragraph (b) and substitute a new paragraph as follows:—

(b) if no person is recommended in pursuance of the foregoing paragraph, in this sub-section, the said commissioners shall give preference to applications received from county surveyors, secretaries of boards of health, and other permanent officials with over 15 years' experience in local administration, and shall recommend the most suitable candidate.

I am suggesting in this that if no secretary to the county council be selected preference shall be given to county surveyors secretaries of boards of health and other permanent officials with over 15 years' experience in local administration. In making these appointments we all look for the best person to run the job. What I would like to do is to put all officials of 15 years' standing on the same basis; in various county councils we have accountants, chief clerks and assistant secretaries of the county council. You might have an assistant secretary or chief clerk of 30 years' standing whose progress or advancement had been impeded because there was no vacancy for him. You may have in the same county the secretary of a board of health appointed last year or the year before. I do not want to give him a preference over the others.

I would like if the Minister would consider all officials of the county council who have been employed there over 15 years and who had given good service. I would like to see them all put on the same basis. We are looking for the best man for the job. I do not think that any man should be automatically pitchforked into it. I agree that the chief executive officer of the county council for the sake of smooth working ought to be appointed but there is no excuse for appointing anybody else. Let the whole of these be taken together and then get the best man.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Amendment No. 19 is standing in my name.

[884] 19. In sub-section (3), to delete paragraph (b) and substitute the following paragraph:—

(b) if no person is recommended in pursuance of the foregoing paragraph of this sub-section and the county accountant of such county or a county accountant of either of the grouped counties (as the case may be) or the secretary of a board of health for a county health district in the said county or either of the grouped counties (as the case may be) is a candidate and suitable the said commissioners shall if only one of such county accountants or secretaries is a candidate and suitable recommend that one such county accountant or secretary and if there shall be two or more candidates from and amongst said county accountants and secretaries who are suitable, the said commissioners shall recommend whichever of those county accountants or secretaries they consider to be the most suitable.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  These three amendments, Nos. 18, 19 and 19a, go together.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  I have grave doubts as to whether there is any purpose in trying to amend this Bill. It is a most objectionable measure. There is, however, one gleam of hope of its being made useful if it is worked by people who had some contact with local affairs and who had local knowledge. To that extent I am responsible for this amendment. I offer it to the House, but I have some reservations as to whether we can concern ourselves about amending this Bill at all.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I am responsible for amendment No. 19 (a), the object of which is to secure that a town clerk in a borough of standing should be placed in the same position as the secretary of a county council or the secretary of a board of health. There are town clerks of high ability who should be eligible for the position of county manager. They have a great deal of experience of housing and public health matters. That would be [885] similar to the work they would have to do if appointed county managers. I ask the Minister to permit these people to be put on the same plane as county secretaries and secretaries of boards of health in regard to this position.

Mr. Coburn: Information on James Coburn  Zoom on James Coburn  I support Deputy Corish in this amendment. Deputy Brennan wants county surveyors and other officials of 15 years' experience in the various county councils to be eligible for appointment. I appreciate the point made by the Minister, that to ensure the smooth working of the Act, it is natural to appoint the chief executive officer. I should like, however, to impress upon him that, at the moment, there are men occupying the position of town clerk who have proved themselves to be possessed of great ability. I can point with pride to the fact that the present manager of Dun Laoghaire was town clerk of Dundalk for a few years and the experience which he gained there played no little part in his subsequent career. He went from the obscure position, if it may be so described, of town clerk of Dundalk to Sligo and from there to Leitrim and in each of these places his work was highly successful. He effected great improvements in the various areas in which he functioned—so much so that great tributes were paid to that particular official——

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  The Deputy was not present at the opening of business to-day, when the House unanimously agreed that, in the debate on this Bill, none of the officials should be referred to personally. If one Deputy were to laud a particular official, another Deputy, holding a different opinion, may indulge in criticism. The Deputy will appreciate the reasons for that course.

Mr. Coburn: Information on James Coburn  Zoom on James Coburn  I quite appreciate the point, but I may be permitted to argue that the fact that town clerks have been successful in these offices is a very good argument in favour of the amendment submitted by Deputy Corish. I am sorry that I was not here at the opening of business. The last thing I [886] should like to do would be to contravene such an arrangement, but one must put up some argument in favour of an amendment which is submitted to the House. As these town clerks have held various important positions and have carried out important duties, they should be placed in a position of eligibility for the position of manager.

Mr. L. Walsh: Information on Laurence Joseph Walsh  Zoom on Laurence Joseph Walsh  I should like to add my voice in support of the amendment and of the claim that the town clerk of an ancient town should have the right to submit himself for these positions. The Minister assures us that, after the term of the first set of managers, the position will be open to all comers. I make the prediction that, if the town clerks of the provincial towns get a fair opportunity, it will be found that many of them will be the county managers of the future. It is unfair that they should be excluded from the position now.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Two sets of officials are given preference under this Bill. In the first place, county secretaries are given preference. I think that that preference is, more or less, accepted now. In the second place, secretaries of boards of health are given preference. I have mentioned that, in the majority of cases, the work of secretaries of boards of health is so wide and onerous that they are often greater than, though not carrying the same responsibility as, the duties of county secretaries. The reason for giving them preference subsequent to the county secretary is that, under the Bill, the office of secretary to the board of health is being abolished because the board of health is itself being abolished. As their offices are being abolished, it is considered that the secretaries of boards of health should get a subsequent preference. Take the officers of county councils—county surveyors, medical officers of health, accountants and others who have been referred to in these amendments. Though they have wide responsibility, they are dealing with compact departments. The medical officer of health specialises in matters affecting the public health. The county surveyor [887] has very wide responsibilities in regard to the roads. The accountant deals with the finances of the county. None of these positions has been abolished and I have stated why a subsequent preference is being given to the secretary of the board of health. I do not think we could give a third preference. Town clerks have shown great ability and experience, but this rule will affect only the first appointments. After these, the positions will be open to everybody.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  We have three boards of health in Cork County. Will the secretaries of these boards get a preference for the position of assistant county manager?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Are not these boards, boards of public assistance?

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  I refer to North and West and South Cork Board of Health.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I understand they will. I understood they were boards of public assistance.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  We are to have three assistant managers for Cork County. Will these three secretaries of boards of health get a preference?

Mr. Brennan:  There is no rule as to who will be appointed as assistant managers.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  The Minister indicates that there might be a desirable second choice for the position of county manager. Is there anything in the Bill to ensure a preference for an assistant manager?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There is nothing in the Bill.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Does the Minister intend to put anything in the Bill?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Then I suggest that the Minister is not being quite consistent.

[888]Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  I have some knowledge of the secretary of one board of health in Cork and I want to say very definitely that I do not believe you will find a better man for the job. Could some preference be given to a man like that?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Now! now!

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  There is no preference being given to him, even though he is all that is required.

Mr. Brennan:  I understand that in some counties a particular situation exists. It has been pointed out to me that in County Galway there is, in addition to the secretary of the board of health, a secretary of a county home, or some title of that sort and I think he is the older official of the two.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  The same thing applies in my case.

Mr. Brennan:  Will he be included with the secretaries of boards of health in any preferential treatment that will be given?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No, he will not.

Mr. Brennan:  I think he ought to be. It was only a while ago my attention was drawn to the matter. He has a greater amount of work to do. We have no analogous work in our county; the secretary of the board of health does the lot. I do not agree with the Minister that all other officials, including accountants and others, are in watertight compartments. What about the chief clerk in the office of the secretary of a county council, and what about the assistant secretary of a county council?

The Minister said that the position of the secretary of the board of health was not being worsened. That is my opinion also, that it is not being worsened. If I was the secretary of a board of health with a certain salary and if I got the same salary as chief clerk of public health I would not find fault with it. I think what the Minister ought to do is to give whatever preferential treatment will be given [889] under the section to all officials of a certain standing and let the best horse jump the ditch and then we will have the best man to run the county.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I hope we will get the best man anyway.

Mr. Brennan:  I think you are fettering yourself unduly right from the beginning.

Amendment No. 18, by leave, withdrawn.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Are we entitled to a decision on separate amendments?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  The Deputy might, on amendment No. 19, get a separate decision, now that amendment No. 18 has been withdrawn.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I should like to have a decision on amendment No. 19a. Of [890] course, if it is unreasonable I shall not press it.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  If a division is not challenged on amendment No. 19, there could be one on No. 19a.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I should like to have that. If there is a division on amendment No. 19, is it your ruling that that covers No. 19a?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Yes.

Mr. Brennan:  Amendment No. 18 would stand and fall with that also.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  It would, and that would cover the town clerk.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  I challenge a division on amendment No. 19.

Question put: “That paragraph (b) stand.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breen, Daniel.
Brennan, Martin.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Lynch, James B.
McCann, John.
Maguire, Ben.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Laurence J.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Brennan, Michael.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Coburn, James.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T. [891]Keating, John.
McFadden, Michael Og.
McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Davin, William.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Everett, James.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah. [892]Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Neill, Eamonn.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried. Ordered that paragraph (b) stand.

Amendment No. 19a not moved.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  I move amendment No. 20:—

In sub-section (3), to delete paragraph (c) and substitute therefor the following paragraph:—

If no person is recommended in pursuance of the foregoing paragraph of this sub-section and a county secretary or a secretary of a board of health or a county surveyor or a medical officer of health (other than a county secretary or secretary of the board of health or a county surveyor or a medical officer of health to whom paragraph (a) of this sub-section applies) is a candidate and suitable the said commissioners shall recommend the most suitable person among such candidates, if there is more than one, and such candidate as is suitable if there is only one such candidate.

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  I would ask the Minister to consider this amendment. There is no attempt being made in it to interfere with the selection of a candidate. In fact, it rather widens the field of selection. It may be that, in certain cases, some of the persons mentioned in the amendment, other than the county secretary, might be suitable for the position of county manager. The county secretary may not apply for the position, but if he applies, and is not appointed, then some outside person is brought in, while some of the officers mentioned might be as well qualified for the position as he is. From the point of view of the selection of a suitable candidate, there does not appear to be any real reason why the field of selection should not be widened. There are county surveyors, county medical officers of health and secretaries to boards of health who, in certain cases, might be suitable persons to fill the position of county manager. At first sight it might appear that a county medical officer of health would not be a suitable person, but, having regard to the extension of public health services and the responsibility which falls on county medical officers of health in respect of them, a man holding that position might be quite suitable as county manager. If appointed he would be faced with the problem of solving in his own mind the merits of public health proposals put before him and their cost compared to other services. Unless it be held that county medical officers of health, county surveyors and secretaries of boards of health suffer from a double dose of original sin, it does not appear reasonable to exclude them as qualified candidates for the position of county manager.

It is quite true that the county secretary has, perhaps, greater opportunities for estimating the relative importance of various services, so far as administration is concerned, but if there is considerable expenditure of public money, a county surveyor is on the other hand in much more immediate touch with the expenditure of that money. While in the course one might be inclined to estimate the relative advantages of any of these officers being in the position, it appears to me that the public service might be better served if the relative merits of each one were considered by a selection board, and that we should not hamper that board by restricting the list.

[893]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  As I stated earlier there may be a good deal to be said for what the Deputy mentioned, but what we are concerned about is to try to provide for the smooth change-over from the present system to the managerial system. While a county secretary might not have anything like as much work to do as the secretary of a board of health, he is in touch with all the services that come finally before the council. He is in touch with the county surveyor, with the medical officer of health and with the veterinary inspector who deals with milk and food. What we are looking for in the first appointments is to ensure the smooth change-over, so that there will be one whose administrative experience will enable him to co-ordinate these services. Under him the county surveyor will be dealing with roads, and the medical officer of health with public health. They are all separate departments, but there is co-ordination through the secretary at the county council. I have given a good deal of consideration to it, and I feel that for the first appointments and for the change-over that the best we can do, where they are found to be suitable and good secretaries of county councils, is to give them the first appointments and that preference. After that if a secretary of a board of health is considered suitable for any other appointments that have to be made in future they are open to everybody. I am not wedded to the thing. It was considered by the Government on the recommendation of my Department and myself, that it would lead to the most smooth working of the change-over.

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  That was really my suspicion in the matter, that it was the smooth working was at the base of this. But the smooth working is there with the system in operation. There are medical officers of health and county surveyors who are not very well pleased with the administration as it is at present. What I mean to convey is that there are county medical officers of health and county surveyors [894] who consider that the public services would be better with some sort of change, even though it were not a smooth change. So far as smoothness is concerned these will be statutory officers. It will be the duty of everybody to co-operate. A case is not being made for any person not qualified to do the work. A county secretary is not statutorily appointed. There is no reason why a more suitable and competent person should not be appointed. While there is much in favour of what the Minister says for smooth working, generally speaking, it is anticipated that county secretaries would get the appointments. The purpose of the amendment is to endeavour to improve the proposal in the Bill. I am sure the Minister will have no objection to that.

This is not a case in which there is any bar to the appointment of a county secretary or any more competent person. Some of those I knew when I had something to do with local government are still in office, and I do not think they could be improved upon. I am talking of cases where there are other competent officials in the service. If a county secretary is the most competent person by all means appoint him. But a county secretary might not be appointed. He might not apply, but there may be other competent persons there. If they are well qualified in the service they should have the right to get the position. It is not mandatory. It simply extends the field and I do not think will in any way interfere with the smooth work of the manager.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  The decision on this amendment will affect the following other amendments: Amendments Nos. 20a, 21 and 25. It will also affect amendment No. 22, but, to preserve amendment No. 22 as a separate amendment, I am putting the question as follows: That lines 57 and 58 and in line 59, the words “secretary other than”, stand part of the section.

Question put.

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breen, Daniel.
Brennan, Martin.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
McCann, John.
Maguire, Ben.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O'Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Laurence J.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Benson, Ernest E.
Brennan, Michael.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T.
Davin, William.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Everett, James.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
McFadden, Michael Og.
McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 22:—

In sub-section (3), paragraph (c), page 4, to delete all from the word “a” in line 59 to the word “applies” in line 60 and substitute the words “the county secretary for the county, or either of the grouped counties, in respect of which the recommendation is being made”.

It is really a drafting amendment to make it clear that, where two counties are grouped, the two secretaries can apply.

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  But the Minister is keeping out the county surveyors, medical officers and so on.

Amendment agreed to.

Amendment No. 23 agreed to.

Amendments Nos. 24 and 25 not moved.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 26:—

Before sub-section (4), page 5, to insert a new sub-section as follows:—

Where a person has presented himself to the Local Appointments Commissioners as a candidate for selection for recommendation for appointment to be the first county [897] manager for a county or each of two grouped counties and has been charged under Section 10 of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 (No. 39 of 1926), and has paid a fee on so presenting himself, such person shall not be charged any fee under the said section on presenting himself to the said commissioners as a candidate for selection for recommendation for appointment to be the first county manager for any other county or two grouped counties.

The reason for this is that only one fee will be charged. If there is a candidate for one county who happens to be unsuccessful he goes on to the other county and he pays only one fee.

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  I move amendment No. 27:—

In sub-section (4), line 22, to delete the words “Before or as soon as may be after the commencement of this” and insert in lieu thereof the words “In the event of no appointment having been made to the office of county manager in any county within four months after the commencement of this.”

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is intended that the permanent manager shall enter on the office at the time that the Bill is brought into operation. It is not contemplated that any temporary manager will be appointed, but if such a position as a temporary manager should arise it would not be wise to limit it. The intention is that there should be no temporary manager, but that the permanent manager should enter on the office as soon as the Bill comes into operation.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  The trouble I see about it is that amendment No. 26 having been carried, amendments Nos. 27, 28 and 29 go by the board.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not think amendment No. 27 would.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Amendment [898] No. 26 was described as merely a question of fee.

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  In my reading of the case in connection with amendment No. 27, there is a period there which is not definite. The words “before or as soon as may be....” The question is what is exactly meant by “as soon as may be”. It may be four months and the four months are put in here with a view to placing a limitation on it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The intention was that there should be no temporary appointment. But if some unforeseen circumstances arise I think it would be unwise to limit the period to four months.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  What do you say to six months then? My aim is to make it definite so that there should not be an indefinite period whereby a man might be kept on beyond six months and it might be said: “We must appoint this man because we have had him a long time in the office already”. Surely six months would be sufficient time to secure a man.

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  If there is no limit fixed, a man's term of office being a certain number of months, may help him unfairly to qualify for appointment to the position. You would be qualifying him in this respect that possibly the selection board in allotting marks to the person who has occupied a position of this kind will give some marks for the time he has occupied that office temporarily. While we are anxious to get the best possible candidate, it ought be so arranged that if there are candidates in respect of whom there is very little difference, the better one of the two may be appointed. A case of this sort might happen: If by reason of service a man were to get 100 marks and with that 100 marks a candidate, because of his temporary occupancy of the office, may beat a candidate who may otherwise be 60 to 90 marks ahead of him. The man who was temporarily occupying the office for, say, six or seven months would, because of that, probably get 100 extra marks. He would have that [899] advantage over a competitor otherwise more competent. In that case the rejected candidate, had he been six months filling the office temporarily, would have 190 marks over the successful man. It is to deal with a situation of that kind that we put down this amendment.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I think it is wrong that there should be temporary managers at all; it is not the intention to have them. But if some unforeseen circumstances arise by which there might be such delay, the council or the public body might find itself in considerable difficulties. This is a statutory office. Considerable difficulty may be created if the appointment could not be made within say, four months. I know that, from time to time, there has been delay in getting the Local Appointments Commission to make appointments. Through no fault of their own, there is difficulty in making appointments; whether the difficulty is due to the interviews or not, I do not know. I do not want to put in a definite limit in the case of a statutory office because legal difficulties might arise if the delay were longer than had been specified. It is not believed that it will be necessary to appoint temporary managers at all, but unforeseen circumstances might occur which would make it desirable to do so.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  I agree with the Minister that it is not intended that these temporary appointments should stand for an indeterminate period. But if a candidate is acting for six months or seven months, he will have a complete knowledge of county management at the end of that period and he will have an enormous advantage over a man who has never been in a county council office. That is not fair and it is a serious aspect of the matter. We know, even with our limited knowledge of local administration, what has happened in the past. A person was appointed to an office and kept hanging on from day to day and month to month and, ultimately, from year to year. When there is a proposal to [900] remove him, there is an outcry and Deputies are fired at from right and left with a view to having him retained. If he is not selected, it is considered that a grave injustice is done. The shorter this period of temporary appointment can be made the better. As it is, the door is left open to abuse. A definite period should be specified in the Bill. If there are candidates in the country fit to fill the office, they will surely be found in four months or six months.

Mr. Cosgrave: Information on William T. Cosgrave  Zoom on William T. Cosgrave  The Minister's case against this amendment is one with which I have no sympathy whatever. As matters stand, whenever a citizen is supposed to do a certain thing by a certain date—pay his income-tax or rates or anything of that sort—and does not fulfil his statutory obligation, all the weight of the State and all its engines come down upon him. If there is a mistake by the State in respect of your bill for income-tax or rates, you are told that it is a technicality. The State can commit any mistake it likes but the citizen none. All these local authority officials have to conform to the law and they have day and date in respect of certain things that must be done. It would be an advantage if there was the same exactitude in respect of the Department, because the view is growing outside that no matter what defect there is in an Act of Parliament in respect of administration from the top, an amending Bill can be brought in here and passed within a few days to remedy that defect. The individual outside has not got that advantage.

Take the case of a big establishment in the city. A manager is wanted and the board of directors meet to consider how the appointment is to be filled. One of them says: “Let us not be in a hurry”; another says: “The Minister for Local Government said four months was not a long time at all in which to do business of this sort.” What business would prosper in these circumstances? This is a big business and if there is any defect in respect of the Local Appointments Commission the responsibility, to my [901] mind, is a Ministerial responsibility. If the Local Appointments Commissioners do their work properly, they will have no difficulty in getting selection boards or carrying out any duty imposed upon them by law. If they are not doing it—and I have a very grave suspicion that they are not—a different situation arises. When we are making regulations, fixing quotas and issuing licences for everybody, I think four months is a long period to give the Minister for Local Government and the Local Appointments Commission to make up their minds about filling these positions.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  On the Second Stage, I raised a question on sub-section (4). This sub-section can only operate before the first manager is appointed. It cannot be brought into operation afterwards. If it is not the intention to make any temporary appointment, what is the necessity for the sub-section at all? It can operate only before the first manager is appointed because provision is made for the subsequent period. There is a serious objection to this sub-section from another point of view. The person nominated by the Minister to be the first manager may, or may not, be the person selected by the Local Appointments Commission afterwards. It is, I think, objectionable that any person other than the person who is to be permanent manager should act as first manager. There are many serious objections to a person acting temporarily as first manager. I take it that he will have all the powers and will carry out all the duties of manager. Yet, he may not be manager afterwards at all. If it is not the intention of the Government to have temporary managers before the appointment of permanent managers, this sub-section is completely superfluous.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  While it is not the intention to have temporary managers, circumstances might arise which would render such appointments necessary. It is the intention to bring this into operation on an appointed day all over the country. The Appointments [902] Commission will have selected the candidates for these positions. In practice, it has occasionally taken long periods to get a person appointed. I have been reminded that it was nine months before a candidate for the City Managership of Dublin was recommended, and that it was two months before the council agreed to appoint him.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  Nobody will have to agree under this Bill.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That was the time which it took—for what reason I do not know. While there would be no objection to accepting a four-month or six-month limitation, I cannot risk doing that in the case of a statutory appointment. If anything transpired which had not been foreseen, we might find ourselves in considerable legal difficulty.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  Assume that it takes nine months and such a case arises, can the Department not wait until all the appointments are made? Can they not postpone the coming into operation of the appointed day?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Of course they will —that is the intention.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  Why not put it in words?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  You do not want to tie yourself up like that.

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  I would prefer tying myself up rather than leaving the section in such an objectionable form as that. It would be much better for the Department and for members of the House that it should be put down in black and white. If you are going to make appointments wait until you have them all made. There is no immediate hurry about it. You have a system working for the last 40 years and it is good enough to last for six or seven months. I think you should put this measure in operation all over the country at the same time. I do not see why there should be any trouble about that. It should come into operation [903] in every county on the same day. The Act that is at present in force came into operation all over Ireland on the same day and it was put into the hands of inexperienced men. The machinery is still there and it can last until the Department has filled the last office.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  At the last moment a manager selected might die or be unable to act.

[904]Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  Of course we will all die, and they will all die.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  Is the amendment being withdrawn?

Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  No, I will challenge a division.

Question put: “That the words proposed to be deleted, stand.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breen, Daniel.
Brennan, Martin.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Moore, Séamus.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Benson, Ernest E.
Brennan, Michael.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Coburn, James.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T.
Costello, John A.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Everett, James.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
McFadden, Michael Og.
McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I move amendment No. 30:—

Before sub-section (5) to insert a new sub-section as follows:—

Whenever the office of a county [905] manager for a county or for each of two grouped counties is vacant after the first appointment to such office under this section, the Minister, if he thinks fit, may appoint, without reference to the Local Appointments Commissioners as county manager for such county or for each of such grouped counties (as the case may be) a county manager for a county or for each of two grouped counties who applies to the Minister for such vacant office of county manager and where there is more than one such application the Minister may if he thinks fit, appoint one of such applicants to such vacant post.

I wonder whether the Minister has any objection to accepting this amendment.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I am afraid I have.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Seeing the favourable reception we gave the Minister on the Second Reading of the Bill, I would point out to him that he has not accepted a single suggestion that we have put up to him on this stage. When a man is appointed a county manager his ambition will stop there. If he has been appointed at a young age, and if he is a first-class man, why should not the Minister be in a position to put his services at the disposal of another county, with his consent, of course. What is the Minister's objection to that? Would it not be a beginning in the setting up of a national Civil Service, if you like to call it that? I thought the Minister would have jumped at the idea in this amendment, and am rather surprised to hear that he does not propose to accept it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  As the Deputy knows all the appointments are to be made by the Appointments Commissioners. If this amendment were accepted it would cut across that whole system, —that is if the Minister were given the right to appoint a person to these positions.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I cannot take the Minister's objection as being seriously meant, because, in this piece of legislation, he has, if I may borrow his own phrase, cut across the whole [906] procedure of appointment by the Appointments Commissioners as it has prevailed up to the present. The Minister quite definitely, in this Bill, has removed the county councils from the position of putting a rubber stamp on the appointment of persons recommended to them, but still they were anxious to keep that honour although it was rather an empty one. In this Bill he has broken the tradition that allowed appointments under the county councils to be actually made by these bodies. I cannot understand why the Minister should reject the amendment, because it seems to me that it would add to the efficiency of public administration. In many cases, once a man gets an appointment as a county manager it will mean that he will have reached the summit of his ambition. There will be a tendency for him to settle down and not make any great effort. But, if he has the stimulus of trying to work from a position in a comparatively small county, where the salary is comparatively small, to a bigger county, why should he not be allowed to be actuated by that particular stimulus?

The Minister is not bound to do this. It only gives him permission. The county council will have nothing to say to the appointment. In the case of the local appointments procedure, there is an analogous practice at present. I am not going to discuss the wisdom of it, but there you allow a man, for instance a medical officer in a small village, to be transferred to a position in an important town. The theory at least is that he is transferred on account of his efficiency. We do not see why the Minister, if he is in a position, on the advice of his Department, to appreciate the merits of a manager, should not be allowed to reward that man's merits by appointing him to a vacancy, if it occurs, in what seems to be a better county.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  In this Bill we give preference to a county secretary if he is suitable for the position of manager. In that way some indication is given to the Local Appointments Commissioners. I do not see how you could put this power into a Minister's hands. If a vacancy occurs in a county for a [907] manager, there is nothing to prevent a manager in another county applying for it and getting it if he is suitable. Deputies are aware that managers in other counties have been appointed to similar positions in the County Dublin and elsewhere. There is nothing to prevent anybody doing that.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  That is all right, but does not the Minister see that there is this difference. Let us assume that the Selection Board set up by the Appointments Commission is as efficient as you will. They will have the advantage of an interview, and a certain amount of information, but that is all they will have to act upon. They will not be in the same position as the Local Government Department or the Minister to form anything like a solid opinion as to the merits of any county manager. If there is one body outside his own county which ought to be in a position to assess the merits of a manager, surely it is the central department. They are continually in touch with him and they know his value. I put it to the Minister that no board under the Local Appointments Commissioners can possibly be in that position.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The Deputy earlier wanted to have county surveyors considered. I cannot understand why this amendment is put in.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I did not speak on that amendment. There were certain officials that I did not want.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 31:—

In sub-section (5), page 5, line 29, after the word “county” to insert in brackets the words “(including the county of Dublin)”, and, in line 34, after the word “section” to add the words “or, in the case of the County of Dublin, under the next following sub-section of this section.”

Amendment agreed to.

Amendment No. 32 not moved.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 33:—

In page 5 to add at the end of the [908] section a new sub-section as follows:—

(6) Save as is otherwise expressly hereinbefore stated, the foregoing provisions of this section shall not apply or have effect in relation to the County of Dublin and, in lieu thereof it is hereby enacted that—

(a) unless at the commencement of this Act the office of Dublin City Manager is vacant, the person who at such commencement holds that office shall by virtue of this sub-section be and is hereby appointed to the office of Dublin County Manager, and

(b) every person who is duly appointed to the office of Dublin City Manager after the commencement of this Act shall forthwith be appointed by the Minister to the office of Dublin County Manager.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  We do not agree to it, but we are not going to divide the House.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There was a division on the principle of Greater Dublin already.

Amendment put and declared carried.

Question proposed: “That Section 4, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  As I said earlier, we are opposing this section, principally because of the fact, as disclosed by the Minister, that it repeals a section of the Local Appointments Act in an unusual—one might say, in a very unorthodox—manner. Heretofore, when sections of an Act of Parliament were being revealed, we had a schedule setting out the particular portions of the Act proposed to be repealed. It is very hard for people without officials behind them, such as the Minister has, to understand the implications of that particular section. Certain sections are quoted by their number in the Local Appointments Act, and it is very hard for us to lay our hands on that particular section or to understand its implication. It is principally for that reason that we are voting against this section.

I am quite prepared to admit that the power given to the county council [909] under the section was only a sort of make-believe, providing county councils with a means of humbugging themselves; but at the same time, it was very definitely there. I understand that the Minister found himself in a dilemma as far as the position of the county manager was concerned, since hitherto it was necessary that the recommendation of the Local Appointments Commissioners be sent to the local authority for approval. That could not happen in this connection, as it is laid down somewhere in this Bill [910] that the county manager would preside at the initial meeting of the new county council. Of course, he would not be in a position to preside, I presume, unless he had been appointed by the county council. The Minister, by his deletion of that section in a very unorthodox way, has put the County Management Act in a very improper light. We are voting against this section and propose to divide the House.

Question put.

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breen, Daniel.
Brennan, Martin.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Benson, Ernest E.
Brennan, Michael.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T.
Costello, John A.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Esmonde, John L.
Everett, James.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
McFadden, Michael Og.
McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

(1) Every person appointed by the council of a county to be the county manager for such county shall hold office until he dies, resigns, or is removed from office.

(2) Every county manager for a county shall be paid by the council [911] of that county such remuneration as the Minister shall from time to time direct, and the moneys required for the payment of such remuneration shall be raised by such council as a county-at-large charge.

(3) Where the county manager for a county is also the manager for a joint body, such joint body shall repay to such council such portion of the remuneration of such county manager as the Minister shall determine.

(4) Moneys payable by an elective body to the council of a county under the next preceding sub-section of this section shall be raised and defrayed, where such elective body is a sanitary authority, as part of the expenses of such elective body incurred for the purposes of the Public Health Acts, 1878 to 1931, and, in any other case, as part of the general expenses of such elective body.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 34:—

In sub-section (1), page 5, line 35, to delete the words “by the council of a county”, and in line 36 to delete the word “such” and substitute the word “a”.

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I move amendment No. 35:—

In sub-section (1), before the word “dies” in line 37, to insert the words “reaches the age of 65 years”.

This would be in line with the principle suggested by the Minister's predecessor, that officials of county councils should retire at 65. The Minister had no law then to enable him to implement his desires in that connection, but there is an opportunity now to take advantage of it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The question of the age of county managers and the age of all officials of local bodies has been under consideration, and another Bill [912] will be introduced, I hope, before the end of this Session which will cover the retiring age of all these officers.

Dr. Hannigan: Information on Joseph Hannigan  Zoom on Joseph Hannigan  Will the proposed legislation include dispensary doctors?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I could not say so offhand. I have not examined the proposal fully yet.

Mr. Hurley: Information on Jeremiah Hurley  Zoom on Jeremiah Hurley  Will it include county and city managers?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Certainly.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 36:—

In sub-section (2), page 5, line 38, after the word “county” where it secondly occurs to insert in brackets the words “(other than the County of Dublin)”

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  I move amendment No. 37:—

In sub-section (2), line 39, before the words “the Minister” to insert the following words “such council with the approval of”

The object of the amendment is to give county councils the right to regulate salaries instead of having them fixed by the Minister.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  If you were to give this power to county councils it would be after the councils were elected the salaries would be fixed.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  I am certain that managers are not going to work for nothing. We had it from the Minister that the Bill is one designed for greater efficiency and for economy in public bodies, but he is denying these bodies the power to fix the salaries of the nominees of his Department who may be appointed managers.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is not fair to say that they will be nominees of the Department.

[913]Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  I maintain that they will be nominees, because public bodies may not be in the good graces of the Department. They may have criticised it and naturally will be got rid of. There will be men put there then to carry out the orders of the Department. Now we have the Department refusing to give this right to the public bodies that have to deal with the rates. If a manager is appointed he will have to appoint a secretary. The way of dealing with the matter inside the law and preventing chaos and inefficiency is to accept the amendment. Otherwise the county council will only be given the right to meet and strike the rates.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Then it is a mistake to give them the power that the Deputy wants to give them.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  They are being given nothing.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  What about creating the chaos which he suggested? It is not fair to say that the nominees of the Department will be appointed to these positions. I do not think the Deputy could say that the county secretaries are nominees of the Department.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  Several of them are great pets.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The proposal here follows what was in the previous Acts dealing with the city managers. In all similar Acts it is left to the Department to fix salaries.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Surely the Minister has got power in the case of appointments made by local authorities to see that the salaries will be subject to his sanction. What does he want more power for here? The Minister talked about the powers local authorities were getting under the Bill. It now transpires that local authorities will be permitted to strike the rates, but will have no voice in fixing the salaries of managers. That is symptomatic of the whole mentality behind the Bill. The Minister already has ample power to deal with salaries, but he is now making everything safe.

[914]Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  I do not think there is a local authority that wants to fix these salaries, and that would not be glad if the Minister would take the responsibility. Salaries were fixed in the case of county medical officers of health by the Minister and that gave entire satisfaction.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Question.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  There was no trouble about it.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I am in a difficulty about the amendment so far as procedure is concerned. I gather that the county managerships will be advertised and that candidates will go forward and presumably they would like to know the salary beforehand. How can the county councils fix salaries if the manager has to be in attendance at the first meeting?

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  The old councils will.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  That was the old system. Will the fixing of salaries for the new system be done by the public bodies? I cannot follow that. After the hard-hearted manner in which the Minister received the gift I was bringing him some time ago, I am surprised that he is still able to convince us that county managers will be servants of the Department. The Minister was most careful to say that it would not be open to any such charge.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  Have not salaries of over £1,200 and even £1,500 been paid to county secretaries? Are we to assume that some of these will be candidates? In some counties they have £1,500, but in the case of a recent appointment the amount was £700. Are we to assume that the Minister will sanction salaries of £1,500 in one county and £700 in another? I want to have some control of salaries left to county councils. Deputy Allen suggested that the public bodies were grateful to the Department for dealing with the salaries of medical officers of health, but in this case the Department will not have the responsibility of paying the salaries.

[915]Mr. McMenamin: Information on Daniel McMenamin  Zoom on Daniel McMenamin  There is no honour and glory left after this.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  As to county secretaries, there is no point in giving preference to county secretaries. In the case of first appointments, where secretaries are suitable, the emoluments will not be less than for the position of manager. That is not going to be laid down as a practice to be followed in subsequent appointments, nor will the salaries of incoming people be on the same basis as outgoing people.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  If a secretary is appointed county manager that will not be taken as a headline.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  Then a secretary will be appointed at £700 or £800 yearly.

Mr. Brennan:  The salary question will not arise until the manager is appointed.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Brennan:  Then a difficulty will arise. Supposing a county secretary was in receipt of £1,500 or £2,000 would the Minister fix the salary at £2,000?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No. What would happen is that it would be referred to the Appointments Commissioners, and a line would be given that if a secretary of a county council or of a board of health was suitable one of them should be appointed. If they were not suitable we are thrown back on other county secretaries and secretaries of boards of health. If you get no one, which is unlikely, then we fix the salary which must be paid the incoming manager. It will not have any relation to all the emoluments of county secretaries.

Mr. Brennan:  Only then? Do you mean to continue him at the old salary?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Has a county secretary the right to refuse the managership?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

[916]Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  If a man is up to pensionable age, and many of them are elderly men, if they got less it would be foolish on their part to accept the appointment.

Mr. Hurley: Information on Jeremiah Hurley  Zoom on Jeremiah Hurley  Am I right in assuming that generally speaking the standard of salaries laid down for county managerships will not be less than that enjoyed by county secretaries?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Hurley: Information on Jeremiah Hurley  Zoom on Jeremiah Hurley  What is the position?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The Deputy need not be asking me, because I have not considered what the salaries should be. I know that in some cases county secretaries have fees that bring their salaries up to a high figure. That was an old arrangement and was continued. In appointing county managers there will be no regard to such emoluments. I have not in mind what should be fixed for salaries where someone was coming in.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  My difficulty now is that I presume there is a secretaryship of a public body vacant and it is advertised. I gathered from the Minister that no salary is fixed in the advertisement. If a secretary of a county council gets it there is one salary but if somebody else, who does not hold an official position gets it, it will not be the same salary. Say that I am an ambitious young man, if you can imagine that, and I am going for that position. I do not know whether the salary is going to be £1,500 or £900.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  You will know all about it.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  How can I possibly know? I know, for instance, that the secretary of the county council has £1,500, and that it may be alleged that he is not suitable and, therefore, I have a chance. I have not an idea of what the salary is going to be, except that it is not going to be £1,500.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I do not know if I made myself clear. So far as I can [917] see, how it works out is this. If the Local Appointments Commissioners interview the secretary of the county council and the secretary of the board of health, so far as the secretary of the county council is concerned, his salary will be fixed, in any case, at not less than he was in receipt of from the county council. The salaries of the secretaries of boards of health vary; some of them are comparatively low. The salary would be much under that of the county secretary. You fix the salary for anybody like that at a certain figure, so that anybody outside the county secretary will know that there will be a definite figure fixed.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  That will be fixed beforehand?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

Mr. Brennan:  Some secretaries are on a different scale of salary from others, as the Minister pointed out. As a matter of fact, some county secretaries [918] are not very well paid. Say the secretary of a county council is in receipt of a salary of £600 per year. In my opinion the Minister would not think that that was an adequate salary for a manager. But, because it happens to be the existing salary of the secretary, will the Minister insist on his carrying on the managership at that salary?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  I have in mind the secretary of a county council who has £500 in salary, but he gets £1,000 extra in fees.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I know that case.

Mr. Everett: Information on James Everett  Zoom on James Everett  Will the Minister include the salary and the fees in that case?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes, otherwise there is no point in giving him preference.

Amendment put.

Belton, Patrick.
Broderick, William J.
Corish, Richard.
Esmonde, John L.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
Murphy, Timothy J.
Reynolds, Mary.

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breen, Daniel.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

[919]Mr. P.S. Doyle: Information on Peadar Seán Doyle  Zoom on Peadar Seán Doyle  I formally move amendment No. 38:—

At the end of sub-section (2) to add the words: “Provided where a person so appointed has already held an office under the county council or group of counties, his remuneration as county manager shall not be less than was payable to such person in respect of the office previously held.”

Mr. Brennan:  We are withdrawing that amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 39:—

In page 5, to delete sub-section (3) and substitute a new sub-section as follows:—

(3) Where the county manager for a county (other than the county of Dublin) or the city manager of a county borough (other than the county borough of Dublin) is also the manager for a joint body, such joint body shall pay annually to the council of such county or the corporation of such county borough (as the case may be) such sum in respect of expenses incurred by such council in respect of such county manager or by such corporation in respect of such city manager as the Minister shall direct.

Under this new sub-section the joint body shall pay portion of the county manager's remuneration in respect of the service he renders. It does not apply to Dublin City and Dublin County because that is covered by amendment No. 63 to Section 12. We are not including the urban areas, because we are making it a county-at-large charge.

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 40:—

In page 5, to delete sub-section (4) —(Section 5).

That is the same as the Schedule.

[920]Mr. Brennan:  Why is the Minister deleting sub-section (4); what is the explanation?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Amendment No. 40 is consequential on amendment No. 39.

Mr. Brennan:  There is no relation between the two at all.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That sub-section is unnecessary with amendment No. 39 there.

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Is the Minister referring to sub-section (3) in the section as amended by 39?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

Mr. Brennan:  Amendment No. 39 sets out that “the joint body shall pay annually to the council of such county or corporation of such county borough... such sum in respect of expenses incurred by such council” and so on. Sub-section (4) which it is proposed to delete sets out the manner in which that money is to be raised. Are these not two different matters altogether?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  These elective bodies, where they are not rating authorities, have no power to raise it themselves.

Mr. Brennan:  Urban authorities?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I know the urban authorities have, but other elective bodies have not.

Mr. Brennan:  We are going by amendment No. 39 to pay out certain sums of money, but you are not going to give the right to raise that money; then where are you to find it? It is a new expenditure and it is not included in the matters for which moneys may be raised. I have no objection to deleting the sub-section at all but I would like to know where we stand.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It has been spread over the county as a county-at-large charge.

[921]Mr. Brennan:  That is introducing a new principle altogether, and, in fact, amendment No. 39 should not be there at all because the county-at-large is going to pay the whole salary? Is not that so?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Yes.

Mr. Brennan:  What is the purpose then of putting in the new sub-section (3) and saying: “shall pay annually to the council of such county or the corporation of such county borough... such sum in respect of expenses incurred... as the Minister shall direct”? I do not follow that. I do not see how the county borough can pay unless it can raise the money and they have not the right to raise the money over the whole county. The only authority that has the right to raise money over the whole county would be the county authority and there does not seem to be any sense in pretending by a sub-section [922] of that sort that the county borough is making a contribution to a salary of the manager. They are not. It is the county that is doing it. Then why should we put it in?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  The county will provide the money for him as a county-at-large charge but you have certain joint districts such as that at Grangegorman, portion of which goes into Wicklow. They will make a contribution. The intention is to provide for cases such as that.

Mr. Brennan:  It seems a peculiar way of doing it.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I will look into it before Report Stage.

Amendment agreed to.

Question put: “That Section 5, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breen, Daniel.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Broderick, William J.
Byrne, Alfred.
Corish, Richard.
Esmonde, John L.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
Reynolds, Mary.

[923] Question declared carried.

Section 6 agreed to.

(1) The county manager for a county shall, by virtue of his office, be—

(a) the manager for every (if any) borough in such county, and

(b) the manager for every (if any) urban district in such county, and

(c) the manager for every (if any) town in such county having commissioners under the Towns Improvement (Ireland) Act, 1854.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 41:—

In page 6, to delete all from the [924] word “be” in line 7 to the end of the section and substitute the words “be the manager for every elective body of which the functional area is wholly within such county”.

This is a drafting amendment. It provides that the county manager will be the manager for boroughs and urban areas.

Amendment put and declared carried.

Amendments Nos. 42, 43 and 44 not moved.

Question—“That the section as amended stand part of the Bill”—put.

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Brian.
Brady, Seán.
Breathnach, Cormac.
Breen, Daniel.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
McDevitt, Henry A.
MacEntee, Seán.
Maguire, Ben.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Broderick, William J.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Corish, Richard.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Esmonde, John L.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Redmond, Bridget M.
Reynolds, Mary.

(1) Where the functional area of a joint body is wholly within a county, the county manager for such county shall be also manager for such joint body.

(4) The Minister may, whenever he so thinks proper, revoke an appointment made by him under this section (including an appointment made under this sub-section) and make a new appointment in lieu of the appointment so revoked.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I move amendment No. 45:—

In page 6, to delete sub-section (1).

This is a drafting amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

Mr. Brennan:  I move amendment No. 46:—

In sub-section (4), line 39, after the word “proper” to insert the words “and for reason stated”.

I think a county council is entitled to know, if the Minister removes a manager or assistant manager, why he is being removed. That is a very reasonable request, and I do not think it would be fair to local authorities that an officer should be removed without their knowing why he was being removed.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  If reasons were to be given, it would lead to criticism, one way or the other, according to individual opinions. The Minister must be trusted to act properly, and it has not been the practice to state reasons in any of these cases. If the Minister so desires, he can state reasons.

Mr. Brennan:  This is an entirely new departure in local government. We have never yet, to my knowledge, had the dismissal of any local officer by the Minister, or by anybody else, for that matter, without the reason being stated that he was incompetent, neglected his duty or some such reason. Here is a case where an official is appointed—I do [926] not know whether he is ever really appointed, but, by virtue of being selected, he apparently becomes the manager—and the Minister may remove him from office and not say a word about it. I do not see why the Minister should be so shy, and why he should not stand up to his responsibilities in the matter. There are plenty of wide phrases which the Minister and his predecessors used without tying themselves down to giving the details of what happened, but that the Minister in a case like this should reserve to himself the right to keep his mouth completely shut and not say a single word about the removal of a man from office, is a completely new departure.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  When a person is removed by sealed order, the reasons are not stated. A council may see what leads up to it very often, but, in the case of removal by sealed order, no reasons are stated.

Mr. Brennan:  In all the previous cases we have had, there was a different set of circumstances altogether. They were circumstances which were considered by the county council, the council first making a complaint and considering it. Now, all this is taken completely out of the hands of local authorities, and the Minister is to be the sole judge. You have a completely new set of circumstances. If a county council had the right to bring a manager to book, it would be a different matter, but they have not, and I still insist that it is the right of the local authority to know why a manager or assistant manager is being removed.

Mr. Broderick:  A sealed order is usually issued after a sworn inquiry, or where the local authority makes a sufficient complaint or gets sufficient proof of the neglect, indiscretions or wrongdoings of an official. They are public property, but this is an entirely different matter. It is not with a view to being obstructionist, or to unnecessarily delaying the Bill, but with a view to conserving, so far as possible, local control and local knowledge of what is happening, that we are putting this forward. It will not help towards the easy working of this new [927] machinery if one individual, no matter how exalted, and no matter what virtue he claims to himself, has the right arbitrarily to remove any individual from office without giving any reasons whatever, either in private or otherwise. I quite see the Minister's point that the Minister ought to be trusted to do nothing very wrong.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  Why?

Mr. Brennan:  Officials were “fired” before.

Mr. Broderick:  I am not dealing with that.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  You do not lay down that principle?

Mr. Broderick:  I do not ever speak very harshly of, or indict, the Minister, but I think it would make for the easier running of this machinery, if control and knowledge were equally divided between the Minister and the local authority, and if no man could be removed from office by any one individual. I think it is a very reasonable amendment and gives more security for the easy working of the Bill.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  One of the objections put forward against the Bill on Second Reading was that it practically does away with local government. We argued against that. I argued against it personally, and I was of the impression that the manager was bound to identify himself with the local interests to a large extent, no matter how he was appointed—whether he was appointed by the local commissioner or by anybody else; but if his official life depends completely on the fiat of the Minister I find it difficult to maintain that position any longer, and I do not see why even a Minister, merely because he is a Minister, should not be asked to justify his actions. I have no confidence whatsoever in the Department of Local Government and Public Health in this matter of local affairs, and it is because I wanted an efficient local administration, and not because I wanted increased control by [928] the Department of Local Government, that I supported the Second Reading of this Bill. Now we find that a man who is entrusted with the management of local affairs may be dismissed without any reason whatsoever being given. I think that is a completely wrong position to take up, and I think it justifies a great deal of the criticisms that, I am sorry to say, I did not believe in myself at the time, to the effect that you are centralising the whole position in the hands of an incompetent Department. That is the position, however, and although I made an appeal, and one of the strongest appeals from this side, for this Bill on the Second Reading, I think it is outrageous that a man who is not an official of the Minister, but an official of the local authority, should be brought in this way completely under the thumb of the Department. I wish the Minister would not take up this attitude on this point. I have taken part in the discussion on this Bill, up to the present and I hope I have not been unduly critical, but I feel that there is a great deal here that would tend to undermine any confidence I had in the Bill, and I am rather surprised at the attitude that has been taken up.

Dr. Hannigan: Information on Joseph Hannigan  Zoom on Joseph Hannigan  I hope that Deputies on all sides of the House will be reluctant to vest this extreme power in the Minister. We all have within our recollection the case of the dismissal of a very high official of the Department of Local Government and Public Health, where no reason was given for the dismissal. The effect of that was to shake the morale of that Department from top to bottom, and I should not like to see the same kind of thing in connection with local authorities. For that reason I think that all Deputies on every side of the House should weigh very seriously their attitude to this particular section.

Mr. Hickey: Information on James Hickey  Zoom on James Hickey  I am not disputing the justice of the Minister as between his Department and any manager of a city or county, but I hope that every Deputy will realise now that, if this section is passed in its present form, every official will be the servant of the [929] Department of Local Government rather than of the local body, and I have had very sad and sorry experience of that in Cork.

Mr. Bennett: Information on George Cecil Bennett  Zoom on George Cecil Bennett  I certainly do not impute to the present Minister for Local Government and Public Health anything irregular, as I am quite certain that he would only use this section in a proper way, but the section certainly envisages the possibility of injustice to individuals. It puts the county councils in a very invidious position, and it puts into the hands of the Minister, whoever he may be for the time being, the power of being prosecutor, judge and jury. I have always been opposed to sections in any Bill which give such extreme powers. Generally, the attitude of Ministers in such cases is that these powers are not intended to be acted upon, or a least that they would not be enforced ruthlessly. I have generally said in those cases, and say now, that if you do not intend to act on a section, then do not put it in the Bill. If it is not intended to act upon this section in the way in which it appears now, then it should not be here.

Mr. Murphy: Information on Timothy J Murphy  Zoom on Timothy J Murphy  The Minister is not very informative on this matter or on the circumstances in which this would arise. My only comment is that this power renders even more farcical the position local representatives would be asked to share when this Bill becomes an Act. I would go even farther than what has been said already and say that this section tends to make the county manager the creature of the Minister for Local Government, and I am not prepared to vote that that power should be put into the hands of the Minister or of any future Minister for Local Government. I do not think that any good case could be made for this particular provision.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  All these appointments come within the purview of the Department for Local Government and Public Health There is no question of stating reasons in these cases. The practice has been that, where something has been found [930] to be wrong, an inquiry is held and the official concerned is removed from office for unfitness or some other reason. The manager is an official like the other officials and must be subject to the same obligations as any other official in the country who is under the Department of Local Government. If you want to put the manager in a special and privileged position above and beyond every other official in the country, then do not do something under this Bill that takes away the rights of democracy. If officials are found to be inefficient or unfit, then they go out. That has been the position.

Mr. Brennan:  Without reasons given?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  A man is removed for unfitness, and that is all that is stated in the sealed order, and that has been the procedure in connection with similar Bills previously.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The Minister spoke of an inquiry. Where is the inquiry held?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Does not the Deputy know perfectly well that the ordinary procedure follows, just as under similar Bills that have been passed within the last ten years? Why does the Deputy want to bring in anything that has not been followed in ordinary Local Government Acts?

Mr. Brennan:  Because there is a complete change of administration.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Are you going to put the city manager in a better position in this regard than other officers?

Mr. Brennan:  No.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Well, that is the present position—that you need not give reasons, and you can remove these officials by sealed order.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Yes, after an inquiry has been held. Is the Minister prepared to hold an inquiry here? I think not. Is it in the Bill?

[931]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It is not in the Bill or in any other Bill dealing with any other officials. It is the same procedure that has been followed in connection with every other Bill dealing with such officials.

Mr. Brennan:  If there had been some delinquency on the part of some official of a county council, the county council would probably find it out. Supposing they did not find it out and that the Minister did, what would the Minister do? He would inform the county council, and then might dismiss the official or manager concerned by sealed order.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  He would hold an inquiry.

Mr. Brennan:  But he might not. We have not any question of a sworn inquiry here from start to finish. Here we have the case of a man who is appointed over the heads of the local authority, but he is their official and now there is nothing to prevent the Minister calling up a manager from the country, giving him his walking papers, and the council may not know a word about it.

It seems to me what the Minister does not appreciate is this, that at the present time a county council has complete authority over its officials. It will in future have no authority over them. Does the Minister realise that, at the moment, local authorities have complete authority over their officials? I agree they may not dismiss certain officials without the consent of the Minister, but they have the right to hold an inquiry themselves, or demand a sworn inquiry. When this Bill is passed they will have lost all that right and the Minister has it all in his own hands and we have a complete change. Why is the Minister shy about standing over his own verdict, whatever it is? Why does he not want to state what the reasons are, when they have always been stated either by way of a sworn inquiry or a local investigation?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  But they need not be stated.

[932]Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The quicker it is put in legislation, then, the better.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  I suggest there is no parallel between the position of the proposed county manager and that of the secretary or any other of the officials of the county council, as we have known them in the past. It was definitely understood, no matter what is in the law, that, prior to the dismissal of anybody, there was always a sworn inquiry held and in every case the council were as well aware as the Minister why a certain official should be dismissed; it was apparent to everybody before we arrived at that stage. I am not concerned with the position of the manager, but I am concerned with the position of the council. It has been bad enough since the establishment of the Appointments Commissioners. When individuals are sent to councils in the country, they look upon themselves as being independent of the councils for whom they are working and they are more inclined to think of the Minister rather than of the duty they owe to the local authority. The position is going to be ten times worse if this is going to be perpetrated—because it is a perpetration. What can you expect of county managers who, when they are appointed, feel the Minister can dismiss them at any time without even saying “by your leave” to the county councils and, without having an inquiry, or even acquainting the council of the reason for the dismissal, can remove them from office? Does not everybody know that, in cases of that kind, they will not be faithful servants of the council which is paying them? There is not a parallel case, as suggested by the Minister.

Mr. Broderick:  There are many reactions to this measure that might be considered. You will have a man appointed and every other official in the county will be at his absolute command. He will have complete control over the appointment or dismissal of other officials. He can dismiss anybody with the consent of the Minister and his local authority may know nothing about the reasons for dismissal. Look at what an avenue it [933] opens out for doubt and misunderstanding and even for far more undesirable possibilities. There is no safeguard that you can bring in to give any candidate security or to encourage the confidence of officials. The position will be that anybody in a subordinate post will be removed from office and the local authority may not be told what he has been accused of or what has been proved against him. You will be creating a position where even the manager can be removed on an order from the Minister without giving any reasons, and he can remove his subordinates without giving reasons to anybody but the Minister. If you are creating such a position as that, I do not know what the end is going to be. The only security you can have is by arranging that no official can be removed from a permanent position without reasons being stated for the removal.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I looked upon this Bill as an effort to preserve local control. I realised that the present system had, to a large extent, broken down. I knew it had broken down in my county. I was, perhaps, unduly influenced by that particular fact, but when I voted for the Second Reading I did not vote to put local control into the hands of a central local government department, and I feel that is being done. Our county council has a bad name in our county and, if possible, the Department has a worse name. I would like a reform, but I do not believe in not properly protecting a man who is not appointed by the local body, but a man who is appointed by the Local Appointments Commissioners, a man who will be in danger, I think unjustifiable danger, of being looked [934] upon as the representative, not of the interests of the local people, but of the whim of the Minister for Local Government. I think his position ought to be particularly protected, if necessary even more than that of the ordinary official and, if there is no statutory protection for the ordinary official, then the quicker there is statutory protection, the better.

I cannot see how any person could consider as reasonable this kind of thing, dismissal without notice, dismissal without any process of inquiry or law or anything else, merely because, for some reason or other unknown to the public or to this House, an official displeases the Minister for Local Government. A manager can be appointed with that hanging over his head. Could you expect civil servants to be independent in the advice they give a Minister if the heads of departments were to be allowed to be dismissed without any proper reason given? It would be a mistake and I suggest you are undermining the whole system by a process of this kind. I am sorry the Minister has taken up this line. I think he is doing a great deal to justify the critics who objected to this Bill on the Second Reading. I am sorry, because I think a Bill of this kind is necessary, and I think that in many cases the present system of local government has actually broken down. I believe something must be put in its stead, but I think, that being so, the Minister should not do anything that would seem to substitute for local government of a different type simply the ukase of the Department.

Question put: “That the words set out be therein inserted.”

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Benson, Ernest E.
Brennan, Michael.
Broderick, William J.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Coburn, James.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T. [935]McFadden, Michael Og.
McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Mulcahy, Richard.
Costello, John A.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Esmonde, John L.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph.
Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremiah.
Keating, John. [936]Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Higgins, Thomas F.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Reynolds, Mary.

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Seán.
Breathnach, Cormac.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Childers, Erskine H.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Fogarty, Patrick J.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Kelly, James P.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
McDevitt, Henry A.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Munnelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Question declared lost.

Question proposed: “That Section 8, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Mr. Doyle: Information on Peadar Seán Doyle  Zoom on Peadar Seán Doyle  On this section, how is it intended to divide the duties of the joint manager that will be appointed in respect of the Grangegorman Mental Hospital and Dublin Board of Assistance? What will be the functions of each of these joint bodies from the administrative point of view? It has been already stated that the administration of outdoor relief would be one of the functions of the city manager.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I cannot say how the work will be apportioned until I see the way the city manager proposes to do it.

Mr. M. Brennan: Information on Michael Brennan  Zoom on Michael Brennan  When I put down an amendment I thought the Minister would have accepted it. He took up a most unreasonable attitude. Perhaps it is not so important in this section as in subsequent sections, but the meaning is the same right through. There is no justification for his attitude, and the Minister is leaving behind him a very dangerous legacy in the Department. With the experience that some of us who supported this Bill from the beginning have had, we are not at all satisfied that our judgment was sound. I feel like Deputy O'Sullivan that some legislation of this nature was overdue, but I certainly never felt that the Minister would take to himself the right to dismiss officers without stating a reason. The experience we have had there has not been very happy, and I am afraid we cannot look to the future with any confidence as far as this Bill is concerned. I warn the Minister he is leaving behind him a dangerous weapon for someone who may succeed him. He should be reasonable. I do not know why he refused to accept words suggesting that some reason should be given. The Minister apparently does not appreciate the difference there will be in administration under this Bill and what happened in the past when the local authorities had all power over the officials. They have [937] lost that now, and will not have the right to inquire into the conduct of officials. The Minister reserves the right to send the manager about his business without saying why. I do not think that is fair, and for that reason we are opposing the section.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Perhaps the Minister would say what section gives power to dismiss a manager?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That is dealt with under the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  It is not power given under this Bill.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The Minister intends to use it. I ask the Minister to put in words as a safeguard. That is the last appeal I make to the Minister now. He is doing a great deal to jeopardise the working of the Bill. He must know that it is a very serious thing to dismiss important officials without reason, particularly men holding the confidence of these bodies and trying to administer them. Half their usefulness is destroyed if they are under the impression that they can be dismissed without proper reason given, merely because they happen not to please the Minister for the time being. I understand that, technically, that is so in the Civil Service, that, technically, a Minister or the Ministry can dismiss a civil servant, even a head of a Department, without any reason given. I suggest that it is disastrous to do so, and that any time it has been attempted it has proved disastrous. The Minister need not go very far to prove that that is the case.

The Minister is now going to take power to do the same thing, so far as what I may call the head of a local administration is concerned. He is giving a man, under this Bill, great powers in local administration. I put it to the Minister that whatever may have been the legislation up to now, whatever may have been the practice up to now, it is necessary to make that [938] person feel secure of his position, that, as long as he is doing his duty by the county, he is secure from dismissal, owing to any whim on the part of the Minister, or on account of any advice that may be tendered to the Minister or any advice tendered to his Department, on which the Minister might act. I say it is necessary that there should be that feeling of confidence. If it is not in the Bill already, I think it ought to be inserted in the Bill. Every endeavour ought to be made to convince the local people that the local manager is appointed to look after their interests, not to carry out the behests of the Department of Local Government. Whatever may be the present legislation, on which the Minister claims he has the right to act, I think he is making a grave mistake.

An arbitrary power of this kind exercised in the case of high officers in any Department of State is bad, has bad effects, destroys administration, reduces it by 50 per cent. of the value it had before. Yet the Minister will not undertake to give this guarantee at a time when he is undoubtedly —I shall not say making inroads into local government—but upsetting, quite rightly, as I think, the system as it now stands, and reforming it. In that position he ought to make every effort to make it quite clear that he is not simply substituting the orders of the Local Government Department for the local interests of the county and that, in the last resort, it ought to be the local interests that count, not what officials here in Dublin or the Minister himself, acting on their advice, may think is good for the local county.

I understood that it was not intended to do away with the local administration. I understood the intention of the Minister was to save local administration. That is what he professed. I believed that that was the purpose of the Bill. I still believe local administration must be reformed.

Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  So do I.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  It must be reformed largely along the lines of this Bill.

[939]Mr. Corish: Information on Richard Corish  Zoom on Richard Corish  Not abolished.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  But after the attitude taken up by the Minister— which appears to be an extraordinary, wooden, official attitude, a difficult attitude to justify from the Parliamentary point of view—I find it extremely difficult still to believe that the main factor in future in local government is not to be centralisation more and more. I have given every support to the Minister in this Bill. I am sorry in one respect that in what we think is vital he will not put down in words what he says is going to be the practice. I put it to him that that is not the way to get confidence on the part of anybody. I put it to him that it is most unreasonable and that any line of criticism we have adopted towards the Bill does not justify that particular attitude. It is difficult still to profess any belief in the Bill if the Minister adheres to that particular line of conduct.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Does the Minister under this section propose to make a new appointment without the aid of the Local Appointments Commission? The section provides: “The Minister may, whenever he so thinks proper, revoke an appointment made by him under this section (including an appointment made under this sub-section) and make a new appointment in lieu of the appointment so revoked.”

Mr. Brennan:  It is for a joint body.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Does that mean that he can make it without referring it to the Local Appointments Commission?

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  It refers to a joint body.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  It does not refer to the manager?

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  No.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Is there not an old-standing protection for all civil servants that they cannot be removed from office or even censured without having the right to be heard in their [940] own defence? That is a fundamental right of civil servants for at least half a century. I wonder have our ultra-democrats abolished that. If they have, I hope it has not been done on the advice of a civil servant. I agree with Deputy O'Sullivan that this is a complete abolition of local government. What is a manager? The very name implies that he is given a lot of discretionary powers. No discretionary power is given to him under this. The one objective that a manager will have under this Bill is to save his own skin. He must be always on the look-out for what the Local Government Department want him to do next and do it. It is not what the area he is administering requires that will count; it is what his bosses in the Custom House want that he will do. If he does not do that he will get his marching orders. There should be some protection given. Surely it ought to be given by a Government that some years ago extended the local government franchise to all persons of 21 years of age and over. Our anxiety should not be so much about protection for the individual manager as for the administration of the area.

If the manager has not freedom of action and discretionary power, he is not a manager in the true sense of the word; he is only a personal representative, a henchman of the Minister. It would be better to change the name and call them the Minister's henchmen rather than managers, because that is what they will be. If I were a manager, I would take very good care that I would be a henchman of the Minister. I would not take up the job unless I was prepared to play that rôle. I do not think, however, that I would be very long there until there would be a clash, so there would be no use in my taking the job. Any man capable of being a manager and of passing the test of the Local Appointments Commission surely should be more than a rubber stamp and a henchman. Surely he should be a man capable of doing his job and giving some attention to local requirements and local wishes. He has no chance of doing that under this. I give the [941] Minister and his colleagues about one year to complete the machinery of dictatorship. When this is in full swing, I cannot see that a single vestige of democratic control will remain in this country. For the last ten years, every year and sometimes a couple of times a year, the Minister's supporters in the Dublin Corporation put down a notice of motion protesting against the managerial system and demanding that it be abolished. Yet those of them who are here will troop into the lobby and vote for this final instalment of dictatorship of the Minister.

An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: Information on Fionán Lynch  Zoom on Fionán Lynch  Is the Deputy speaking to Section 8, I wonder?

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  He is. I appeal for ordinary justice for the individual who will be appointed. He must be a capable and distinguished public servant or he would not be appointed. He should have fair play and freedom in his office. If he does not do his work properly there should be some tribunal to deal with him; let it be the Minister or any of his colleagues, but let it be somebody with some human feeling who will give that man a chance before he is thrown out of office in the declining years of his life in disgrace. There should be machinery for appeal and sentence should not be passed on him without charge or trial. The Minister was chairman at one time of the Mayo County Council. If a manager is appointed in Mayo, what has he got to consider? He has to consider the people in the Custom House, not the people in Mayo. What will he care about the people of Mayo so long as he is well-in with the people in the Custom House? That is what he will strive after, and that is what will pay him. If you want a manager to look after the interests of a county, you should give him freedom and discretionary powers. You should give him a chance to consider the wishes of the area he is administering; otherwise he will be just a henchman of the Local Government Department without any regard to the interest of the people who are paying him.

[942]Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There has been a lot of talk here which had nothing to do with the Bill. We are not taking any more powers to interfere with the manager than were taken in the Dublin City Management Bill and the other Bills. This sub-section states that the Minister may revoke an appointment made by him for proper reasons stated. That deals with managers for joint bodies, and it says that the appointment may be revoked at any time. There is no necessity to state any reason there. The position is that it only refers to joint bodies. Unless people want to read something into it that is not there it will be found that it only refers to joint bodies. It does not refer to removal or dismissal. Deputy Belton is talking about democracy. What it means is this—you have in some places a mental hospital for two counties, as for instance, in Ballinasloe. These mental hospitals take patients from two counties. You may decide to make an appointment of the manager of the particular county in which it is situated or you may decide to appoint the manager of an adjacent county. That is all that is meant about the appointment.

As we have had a lot of talk here about the power of removal and so on, I want to point out that there is nothing brought into this Bill except what you have approved of for years. Many Deputies have attacked in this Bill a principle of which they have repeatedly approved for years back. Deputy Belton may talk of democracy but he has voted for previous Bills in which this principle is established. It may have been very undemocratic to have done so but he should not blame other people for doing here in this Bill what has been done in this House for over ten years. The manager when appointed becomes an officer under the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act. That is regulated by the Act passed in 1926. If there is any complaint about an officer, the Minister can inquire direct into the matter. The officer can be suspended during that inquiry. It has never been the practice to do anything that is unfair. I do not know why a precaution of that sort is taken. There may be good [943] reasons for the inquiry. When a sealed order is sent down dismissing an officer it is stated in the sealed order that this person had been found unfit to hold office. Everybody knows that when an inquiry has been held how it is that the officer is considered unfit to hold office. That has been the practice for years. This provision was specially put into the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926. There is no use in all this talk about democracy because you have been doing that very thing for the last ten years. The House is asked to do the same now. The only question regarding revoking appointments arises in connection with appointments that may be held under a joint body where you have the mental hospital for two counties. You may remove the manager in that case, but I ask Deputies not to run away with the whole question because of that. That sort of thing does not do any good.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  If the House has been misled it is the Minister who misled it. It was because the Minister, on discussing this section claimed the right to dismiss the manager without reason. If, therefore, this discussion has taken the lines it did, it did so because the Minister claimed that particular power. The Minister now having read the section realises what the section means; he appreciates what he was claiming under the section and he realises too that that does not come in at all. That is what the Minister has done by claiming powers to dismiss the manager. He protracted the discussion.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  I claim that right. That has always been the law and Deputy Belton who talks so much now about democracy approved of it.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Again the Minister is back to the point that a thing happened in 1708, and therefore it must happen now.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It happened in 1926 and since.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Yes, and since [944] then we have seen the dismissal of the head of the Department of Local Government and Public Health—in fact the head of the whole Local Government administration. We think when we have an opportunity to do so we should safeguard ourselves from that sort of thing and see that the county council administration is not put into the same position. What we are asking the Minister to do is only to put a normal safeguard into a Bill. What we are asking for is a safeguard of this kind. Under Section 5 we moved an amendment of a similar kind. I am sorry now that it did not dawn on the Minister earlier that his contribution to this debate on that particular Section 5 was out of order. It only dawned upon him very gradually. What I have attacked was the claim made by the Minister to the power of dismissal without reason. I put it to him that it was a mistake. I think the Minister will find that he will have a better working Bill if he accepts the provisions of this amendment.

Dr. Hannigan: Information on Joseph Hannigan  Zoom on Joseph Hannigan  It is certainly a matter of indifference to know by virtue of which Act this extraordinary power is vested in the Minister. Last week Deputy Childers when speaking down the country said that democracy is on trial. It appears now the trial is over, and judging by the Minister's action, democracy has been sentenced to death. The county manager would possibly manage a county in accordance with his ability. What the Minister appears to want is a little plastic body that will mould itself to his will. That sort of thing will not make for efficiency in local administration. I would not impute anything unfair to the Minister. I would not say that in circumstances he would dismiss a man for a trifling reason. The fact, nevertheless, of giving the Minister this extraordinary power of being able to dismiss a manager without essential cause must create suspicion all round. It would certainly lead to a suspicion that the action was political and that it was entirely dissociated from the question of efficiency or anything like that.

[945]Mr. Bennett: Information on George Cecil Bennett  Zoom on George Cecil Bennett  From what I know of the Minister personally I think he is the last man in the world to convict anybody unfairly. I put this to the Minister—he said to the House now that he is only doing what has been done in various Bills from time to time, and recently, too. Some of us have argued that certain sections should not be in the Bill. I put it to the Minister, as a man of independent spirit, that he ought not be afraid to set up a new precedent. He refused to accept a previous amendment. I think the Minister should reconsider well the position, and if he does so he will realise that no harm can be done by setting up a new precedent and making it obligatory on future Ministers, in cases of dismissal, to state the reasons. It should be made obligatory on the Minister to state the reasons. One of the chief reasons why we are opposing this Bill is that we feared that the independence of the local bodies was being given away. Now that the county councils are being abolished there is a great fear that all power is to be centred in the manager and local bodies were afraid that the manager would not be as independent as the local bodies had been. If it becomes clear to the people that the manager is put there so as to be subservient to the Local Government Department, that he can be dismissed, without reasons stated, then all confidence whatsoever will have departed from this Bill and it will be looked upon as a practical centralisation of local government in the Custom House.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  What objection has the Minister to giving the manager an opportunity of making his own defence?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  That is provided for. There must surely be an inquiry.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  I understand that the Minister was reserving power to remove the manager without giving reasons. Is that the position?

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The Minister said so several times.

[946]Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  What objection can there be before the man is sentenced to death and hanged, drawn and quartered to give him a chance of making a case in his own defence? The foulest murderer in any country is given an opportunity to defend himself. He is given the best counsel and the best advice to help him in his own defence.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  He knows perfectly well with what he is charged. There is an inquiry. What I want to emphasise is that it is not necessary, and has not been the practice, to state in a sealed order anything more than that the person was removed because he was unfit for office. He has an opportunity to answer any question raised against him.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  The charge will be preferred against him before he is dismissed?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  It might happen that, in the course of investigations by an auditor, certain things would come to light.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Will there be a public inquiry?

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  There may be.

Mr. Belton: Information on Patrick Belton  Zoom on Patrick Belton  Will there? Would it not make for efficiency to give him that protection and could he not be punished equally well?

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  Are we not discussing Section 8?

An Ceann Comhairle: Information on Frank Fahy  Zoom on Frank Fahy  Section 8 as amended.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  In what part of Section 8 is there reference to the suspension or dismissal of a manager?

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The Minister introduced a new section in his speech.

Mr. Ruttledge: Information on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  Zoom on Patrick Joseph Ruttledge  No, the matter was started from the opposite side.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  An amendment was put down with regard to the appointment and the Minister took [947] that amendment in an entirely different sense from that which the mover intended.

Dr. Ward: Information on Dr. Francis Constantine Ward  Zoom on Dr. Francis Constantine Ward  He dealt with it from the point of view of the speeches made upon it.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  I do not think that we should have Second Reading speeches on the Committee Stage of a Bill at 20 minutes past ten.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  The question of the dismissal of a manager is not a matter for the Second Stage of a Bill.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  It does not arise on Section 8.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  I did not speak until after the Minister and everything I said was in rebuttal of the attitude taken up by the Minister.

Mr. Allen: Information on Denis Allen  Zoom on Denis Allen  Deputy Brennan's amendment [948] would not save the manager.

Mr. Brennan:  It was not intended to.

Professor O'Sullivan: Information on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Zoom on Prof. John Marcus O'Sullivan  Perhaps I may return to Section 8, despite the highly interesting by-ways into which the Minister led us. If you dismiss a certain person in control of a joint body, such as an asylum, surely you ought to tell the local bodies concerned why it has been done. That, which was the purpose of the amendment, has led to a discussion of a much more important question. It has been practically suggested that the Minister will not act wrongly where a high official is concerned. We do not believe that. His predecessor did it with the approval of the whole Government and broke down, to a large extent, the whole administration. Will the Minister be more careful in the case of the administrators of the local bodies?

Question put: “That Section 8, as amended, stand part of the Bill.”

Aiken, Frank.
Allen, Denis.
Bartley, Gerald.
Beegan, Patrick.
Boland, Gerald.
Brady, Seán.
Breslin, Cormac.
Buckley, Seán.
Crowley, Tadhg.
Derrig, Thomas.
De Valera, Eamon.
Flynn, John.
Flynn, Stephen.
Fogarty, Andrew.
Friel, John.
Gorry, Patrick J.
Harris, Thomas.
Hogan, Daniel.
Humphreys, Francis.
Killilea, Mark.
Kissane, Eamon.
Lemass, Seán F.
Little, Patrick J.
Lynch, James B.
McDevitt, Henry A.
MacEntee, Seán.
Meaney, Cornelius.
Morrissey, Michael.
Moylan, Seán.
Mullen, Thomas.
Muneelly, John.
O Briain, Donnchadh.
O Ceallaigh, Seán T.
O'Grady, Seán.
O'Loghlen, Peter J.
O'Reilly, Matthew.
O'Rourke, Daniel.
O'Sullivan, Ted.
Rice, Brigid M.
Ruttledge, Patrick J.
Ryan, James.
Sheridan, Michael.
Smith, Patrick.
Traynor, Oscar.
Victory, James.
Walsh, Richard.
Ward, Conn.

Belton, Patrick.
Bennett, George C.
Benson, Ernest E.
Brennan, Michael.
Broderick, William J.
Browne, Patrick.
Byrne, Alfred.
Coburn, James. [949]Hickey, James.
Hughes, James.
Hurley, Jeremnah.
Keating, John.
McFadden, Michael Og.
Corish, Richard.
Cosgrave, William T.
Costello, John A.
Dockrell, Henry M.
Doyle, Peadar S.
Esmonde, John L.
Giles, Patrick.
Hannigan, Joseph. [950]McMenamin, Daniel.
Mongan, Joseph W.
Murphy, Timothy J.
O'Sullivan, John M.
Reynolds, Mary.

Question declared carried.

Progress reported. The Committee to sit again to-morrow.


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