Order of Business.
Committee on Finance. - Supplementary and Additional Estimates, 1946-47.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 21—Stationery and Printing.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 23—Ordnance Survey.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 29—Agriculture.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 32—Office of the Minister for Justice.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 33—Garda Síochána.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 35—District Court.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 43—Dundrum Asylum.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 59—Unemployment Insurance and Unemployment Assistance.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 53—Forestry.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 55—Industry and Commerce.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 56—Transport and Meteorological Services.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 61—Posts and Telegraphs.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 76—Civil Service Remuneration.
Committee on Finance. - Vote 77—Repayments to Contingency Fund.
 Do chuaigh an Ceann Comhairle i gceannas ar 3 p.m.
An Tánaiste: The business to be taken is No. 2 on the Order Paper, the various Supplementary and Additional Estimates, in the order in which they are on the Order Paper. It is proposed that public business be not interrupted at 12 o'clock, that Government business be continued until it is finished, after which Private Deputies' business will be taken, namely, motion No. 2 on list 13.
Mr. Cogan: There is a motion on the Order Paper in the name of Deputy Heskin and myself and, as a matter of urgency, I should like it to be taken at the earliest possible moment in Government time.
An Ceann Comhairle: I suggest that the Deputy see the Whips, which is the usual procedure in such cases.
General Mulcahy: Is the House sitting next week?
An Tánaiste: No, if Government business is finished to-day.
Mr. Cosgrave: Is it proposed to sit late to-day?
An Tánaiste: I am not moving to sit late. I understand there has been some discussion between the Whips in regard to that matter, and that some understanding has been come to.
The Dáil, according to Order, went into Committee on Finance and resumed consideration of Supplementary and Additional Estimates for the year ending March 31st, 1947.
Minister for Finance (Mr. Aiken): I move:—
Go ndeontar suim breise nach mó ná £10,830 chun íoctha an Mhuirir a thiocfas chun bheith iníoctha i rith na bliana dar críoch an 31ú Márta, 1947, chun Tuarastal agus Costas Oifig an tSoláthair; chun Páipéarachais, Clódóireachta, Páipéir, Ceangaltóireachta agus Leabhra Clóbhuailte i gcóir na Seirbhíse Poiblí; agus chun Ilsheirbhísí Ilghnéitheacha lena n-áirítear Tuairiscí ar Dhíospóireachta an Oireachtais.
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £10,830 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and expenses of the Stationery Office; for Stationery, Printing, Paper, Binding and Printed Book for the Public Service; and for sundry Miscellaneous Services, including Reports of Oireachtas Debates.
The additional financial provision required for the Vote is due to the fact that certain commitments which could not be foreseen when the Estimate was framed were contracted during the financial year. The prices quoted in respect of new contracts placed for the printing for registration officers under the Electoral and Juries Acts proved to be much higher than anticipated. Due to increased demands for Departmental printing, which gave rise to a considerable increase in paper consumption, purchases necessary for the maintenance of paper stocks were much higher than the requirements originally estimated. Additional Hollerith machine equipment ordered for the Irish Land Commission in 1942, the delivery of which, owing to the war situation, was deferred indefinitely, was received in the current financial year. Supplementary provision under sub-head J, Miscellaneous Office Supplies, is necessary to defray the cost of this equipment. The increase in salaries and wages following the consolidation of bonus settlement has also contributed to the general excess expenditure which made recourse to a Supplementary Estimate unavoidable.  The additional expenditure anticipated on the gross Vote is modified by additional receipts from Appropriations-in-Aid resulting chiefly from sales of waste paper, advertisements in official publications, costs recovered from local authorities in respect of electoral printing, and enhanced sales of customs forms.
Mr. Hughes: What is the purpose of the particular machine for the Land Commission which the Minister mentioned?
Mr. Aiken: It is one of those machines that turn out notices on a mass production basis.
Mr. Hughes: How many workers will this machine displace?
Mr. Aiken: It is not a question of the number of workers that it will displace, but that it enables the Land Commission to do the work accurately and with speed.
Mr. Hughes: Is it not true that it will displace workers?
Mr. Aiken: Yes, I suppose it is, but it does the work more accurately and speedily.
Mr. Hughes: I am asking how many workers it will displace?
Mr. Aiken: I would require notice of that question.
Mr. Hughes: Does the Minister think it is wise to put in this machine when men and girls can do the job and, I presume, have been doing it efficiently? I understand there is a machine installed over there already which turns out demands for annuities.
Mr. O'Grady: Why not get back to the reaping hook?
Mr. Hughes: We are not talking about reaping hooks but about the staff of the Land Commission.
Mr. O'Grady: It amounts to the same thing.
Mr. Hughes: It is unwise to put in these machines and I think the Minister should consider that aspect of the  problem. To-day we notice that the daily papers are calling attention to the fact that our population is falling. Yet, the Minister's policy is to put in a machine to displace a number of workers in the Land Commission.
Mr. Aiken: I must say that I am surprised at Deputy Hughes. It is very hard to please him. If I came in here with a Supplementary Estimate for more civil servants, there is nobody would growl with greater vigour than the Deputy, but because I come in here for a very small sum of money which will enable the State Department to do its work accurately and with speed and at the lowest possible cost he is still growling. I cannot please him and I do not propose to try.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: Has the Minister satisfied himself of the efficacy of this particular machine in the light of its performance in large industrial and commercial firms? I have some knowledge of this machine and I know of one instance in which it has been working for nearly 15 years. A good deal of manual labour had to be employed to follow up the work of the machine. I am prepared to say that the efficacy of the machine is questionable so far as its relation to manual labour is concerned.
Mr. Hughes: How often do the machines that are there break down?
Mr. Aiken: The Deputy had better ask the Land Commission that question.
Vote put and agreed to.
Mr. Aiken: I move:—
Go ndeontar suim breise ná raghaidh thar £10 chun íoctha an Mhuirir a thiocfas chun bheith inioctha i rith na bliana dar críoch an 31ú lá de Mhárta, 1947, chun Tuarastal agus Costas na Suirbhhéireachta Ordonáis agus MiontSeirbhísí lena n-áirítear Macsamhla de Láimh-scríbhní Seanda a dhéanamh.
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £10 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and  Expenses of the Ordnance Survey and of Minor Services, including the Facsimile Reproduction of Ancient Manuscripts.
There is much the same reason for this additional Supplementary Estimate— the consolidation of the bonus, an additional amount of paper, an increase in the cost of paper and some incidental expenses.
Vote put and agreed to.
Minister for Agriculture (Mr. Smith): I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £15,690 be granted to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Office of the Minister for Agriculture, and of certain Services administered by that Office, including sundry Grants-in-Aid.
This Supplementary Estimate is made up of four items. As the House is aware, the Government have increased the grants to University Colleges and as the grants to the University covering the Faculty of General Agriculture and the Faculty of Dairy Science were borne on this Vote, I am making provision in this Supplementary Estimate for the proportionate amount due to the Establishment on foot of that decision for a seven months' period. The amount is £11,030, divided between University College, Dublin, £7,255, and University College, Cork, £3,775, subject to any stipulations that I may decide or feel obliged to attach to this grant.
The next item is one of £860 which is provided to meet the expenses incurred by the county committees of agriculture as a result of the harvest scheme. An arrangement was made at the time between the Department of Industry and Commerce and my Department for the supply of tea and sugar to voluntary workers and secretaries of committees of agriculture were notified of the amounts of these commodities that would be made available to them and they were instructed to order these supplies from whatever  trader they had selected. That arrangement, as Deputies are aware, was carried out and this is to recoup the committees for the expenses incurred under that head.
The next item is one of £3,200 which is intended to make it possible to dispose of the amount of Progress wheat which we are importing this year. In reply to a Parliamentary Question, I explained that we were able to import more Progress wheat from Sweden. The price at which it was available to us was somewhere in the neighbourhood of, I think, £5 per barrel and, as the House is aware, the fixed price of pedigree seed produced in this country was 96/-. It was thought desirable that Progress wheat so imported should be made available on similar terms and this Estimate is to enable us to sell this wheat at the same price. The other item is one of £30,500 which is caused by the increases in remuneration to members of the staff of my Department.
Mr. Hughes: I take it that the additional grant provided for the universities is not for any specific purpose or any extension of the existing services. At least, the Minister has not mentioned any such purpose. I take it, it is merely an increase in the cost of the existing services. Under sub-head O (5) there is provision of £3,200 as a subsidy for imported Progress wheat. I am glad we are getting some Progress wheat and I understand that what we had last year gave very good results but I should like to inquire from the Minister how this seed is to be distributed and how the farmers that are to get it will be selected. I presume Pedigree Seed Growers, Limited, will handle it. I have been critical of the policy of using this company, Pedigree Seed Growers, Limited, to deal with the matter of seed. They are a group of Dublin salesmen. They have no interest whatever in seed production beyond the interest of whatever rake-off they can get. No farmer or no farming organisation is consulted in connection with the matter.
I presume Pedigree Seed Growers, Limited, will select the farmers according to their ideas as to the people who should get it. I ask the Minister, does he think that certain distributors in  this city are the right people to trust in the selection of people who should get this imported seed for the purpose of propagation, and does he feel that he is treating the farming community of this country fairly in excluding them from having any voice in the matter? Why should an organisation such as that, composed of city men, be allowed to get their rake-off in seed production for this country? They make no real contribution to seed propagation. I resent very much the fact that they have been entrusted with this work. There are many farming organisations that could do this far more efficiently. If the Minister were to entrust it to a farming organisation such as some of the co-operative societies in the south or the Beet Growers' Organisation, which is keenly interested in tillage and which represents the traditional tillage areas in this country, they would take a real interest in ensuring that the seed was properly handled. They would be in the best position to select the best farmers, trustworthy men who would ensure that it was kept clean and true to type and that in threshing operations no admixture would occur.
I feel that the reason why there is such a rapid deterioration in the seed is because we are approaching this matter in the wrong way. The people entrusted with the seed, the pedigree seed producers, have no interest in this matter beyond that they get a pretty substantial rake-off. The farmer who propagates the seed gets £3 for it. It is taken in by these people and, no doubt, cleaned and assembled properly, but they charge 96/- for it. That is too big a margin. I am not criticising the charge made for handling and assembling the seed, because there is no doubt it needs to be handled properly, but I feel the margin between 60/- and 96/- is too wide. The people who handle the seed have only a profit-making interest in it and the agricultural community, who are directly interested, are more or less excluded in that connection. If the cleaning and assembling work is not properly done, and if there is any sign of admixture or careless handling—if the threshing mills are not properly  cleaned before the threshing of this special seed—the results cannot but be far from satisfactory.
The Department obviously have failed to secure a suitable agricultural organisation that would take a proper interest in this matter. The Minister is not responsible for that, but I hope, now that he has taken up the work of the Department, he will examine this matter to see if it is possible to get some agricultural organisation to work it. I believe it would be possible to do that. I believe in getting a farmers' organisation to handle the seed, because that would have a tremendous moral effect on the interested people. The Minister may suggest that there are difficulties in the matter of storage. It would be quite possible to hire stores. All along the Barrow valley, for instance, it would be quite possible to hire stores, and that is a district eminently suitable for the production of seed.
Mr. Cogan: There is a grant provided here for county committees of agriculture, recouping them for their expenses in connection with the harvest campaign. The entire farming community owe a deep debt of gratitude to all who assisted in that campaign. At the moment we are experiencing another emergency throughout the country, an emergency just as serious as that which confronted us last August; that is, in connection with the sowing of this year's crops. It is desirable that the Minister should give serious attention to the need of establishing some kind of organisation to deal with that situation. To-morrow is the 1st March when, by tradition and custom, the crows begin to build their nests. I doubt if there is more than a very small fraction of the arable land under the plough. That is an alarming situation. The time is rapidly running out and the Arctic conditions appear to be continuing. The Minister may ask what he can do in the matter. At least he can ensure that in all areas there will be sufficient labour available, from no matter what source it may be drawn.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy is travelling away from the Vote when he is looking for labour.
Mr. Cogan: It may be necessary, in the present serious circumstances, to divert labour from other pursuits, other than the production of fuel, which is an equally important issue. Tractors are urgently required and there are tractor owners who have not got sufficient equipment. The Minister could help in that way and steps should be taken to see that every available tractor is put on the land.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy is now dealing with a motion on the Order Paper; he is anticipating.
Mr. Cogan: I am referring to it in passing. I am trying to get the Minister to devote his attention to this matter immediately and to endeavour to speed up the work of preparing the land. The weather conditions within the past few weeks have created a serious problem and everything should be done to help the farmers to prepare the land for the season's crops.
I am in agreement with Deputy Hughes that it is undesirable to leave to the seed distributing firms the entire work of assembling and distributing pedigree seeds. In other countries there are firms which have a long agricultural tradition with regard to the production of seeds. Firms are actually engaged in agriculture for the purpose of producing seeds and they are, perhaps, eminently suited for such work. We may not have firms with such long and well-established traditions and if the Minister thinks it would be too far-reaching to adopt the suggestion put forward by Deputy Hughes, to hand over this work to a farmers' organisation or a co-operative society, at least portion of it could be diverted to some organisation such as the Beet Growers' Association or some of the co-operative organisations in the south, and we could see how their methods would compare with those of the firms at present engaged in the work of cleaning and assembling. An experiment of that kind would, in my opinion, be worth while. It might pave the way to the building up of a really effective organisation.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: Will the Minister say if the provision he is making for increased remuneration for staffs includes  cover for the staffs in the Botanic Gardens and the Albert College?
Mr. Smith: No.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: Will the Minister say if wage increases are contemplated for those staffs, or if there are any negotiations proceeding?
Mr. Smith: Those things must be covered in the ordinary way.
Mr. Hughes: This is only for the university.
Mr. Flanagan: Might I refer to the sum of £860 requested by the Minister for Agriculture for payment to county committees of agriculture in connection with the expenses incurred in the campaign to save the harvest? I thought the Minister would ask for a much greater sum than £860. I would be very glad if the Minister could inform the House what was the amount of expenses incurred by the Dublin County Committee of Agriculture. I understand there are 26 or 27 county committees throughout the country. The sum mentioned would give an average of £30 or £33 per county committee of agriculture. The work was done very economically, and I understand that certain county committees had intended to approve payments in respect of expenses incurred by private citizens in the matter of petrol and by such people as hackney-men who were dependent on their cars for a livelihood and whose services were called on by the various committees. I understood that those people were to get something for their services—at least were to get an amount equivalent to what they had spent. I agree that the county committees did very useful work on that occasion, and I must say that the House should approve with the greatest cordiality the amount asked for by the Minister. I am surprised that it is not far greater, in view of the huge amount of work carried out so very efficiently, work which deserves the highest praise and the deepest gratitude, as Deputy Cogan has said. I should be glad to hear if the Minister has at his disposal any figure which would give an indication of the payment to be made in this  respect to the Dublin County Committee.
Deputy Hughes referred to the condition of many of the threshing mills, and I am sure that the Minister is aware—his predecessor at least was well aware—that complaints have continuously been coming in from farmers about the very bad state of quite a large number of threshing mills. This is a very important matter from the point of view of the threshing of seed.
An Ceann Comhairle: Can the Deputy say under which of these four headings he brings threshing mills?
Mr. Flanagan: In regard to seed. When seed is being threshed——
An Ceann Comhairle: I thought it was threshed in Sweden.
Mr. Flanagan: I wanted to draw the Minister's attention to the amount of waste which takes place because of threshing mills not being up to standard. I should be glad if the Minister could arrange for some inspection of these mills, because farmers are making complaints——
An Ceann Comhairle: It does not arise.
Mr. Flanagan: It is a very important matter——
An Ceann Comhairle: Deputies have very important matters to discuss, I am sure, but they have to wait the opportune time.
Mr. Heskin: With other Deputies, I should like to offer my thanks to the Minister and the different committees who helped to overcome the difficulty in connection with the harvest last year. In connection with the allocations of rations to the different areas, one point was lost sight of. In the case of a farmer who employed many additional hands at that time, because the hands were employed and paid, the farmer received no rations in respect of them. That was very unfair because the farmer had to provide rations for the men whom he employed. I was one of a number in my locality who had to employ labour and we could not get rations, even though the men were men  who had been doing county council and other work, and I suggest that where extra workers are employed, if the occasion to employ them should again arise, they should come within the scheme.
The allocation of seed is a very important matter, and, in fairness to the county committees who have been asked to co-operate with the Minister in his effort to increase tillage production, such seed should be equally distributed to the county committees, because on these committees there are representative farmers who know the suitability of the applicants for seed. In the majority of cases, very practical men are elected and appointed to the committees and there is no body of farmers—co-operative society, farmers' organisation or any other—more suited to deal with the distribution of the seed. It may be said that Dublin City men and others of that type should not have the allocation, and I agree, but they are still practical men, and I maintain that the proper way to distribute the seed is through the county committee, the members of which will discuss with the agricultural instructors and with practical farmers who are the suitable applicants. I suggest further that, where seed is allocated, the greatest care, as Deputy Hughes pointed out, will be exercised in the threshing of it, because if you want to keep it true to type, it is only men experienced in the handling of machines and practical farmers can do it. Finally, I urge again that, in order to have a proper allocation of seed, it should be distributed through the county committees.
An Ceann Comhairle: It strikes me that Deputy Flanagan was relevant in his remarks with regard to the threshing of seed. I misunderstood him.
Mr. Byrne: With regard to the item “Additional Grant to University College, Cork, Faculty of Dairy Science,” could the Minister tell us what provision he is making to guarantee an adequate supply of milk in Dublin?
An Ceann Comhairle: That does not arise. A grant to a college has nothing to do with the milk supply in Dublin.
Mr. Byrne: I hold that when there is a grant for dairy science, the milk and butter supplies of the whole country can be considered.
An Ceann Comhairle: No. It is a grant to University College, Cork.
Mr. Byrne: I cannot follow the argument.
An Ceann Comhairle: I certainly cannot follow the Deputy when he suggests that the provision of a grant to University College, Cork, for a specific purpose entitles him to discuss butter or milk supplies to Dublin residents.
Mr. Byrne: In respect of dairy science generally, I want to know what are the Minister's intentions for the development of the butter and milk industry.
An Ceann Comhairle: That is a matter for the university, not for the Minister.
Mr. Byrne: When there is a grant in respect of dairy science, I hold——
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy is out of order and I think he is aware of it.
Mr. Byrne: ——that the milk production of the whole country arises.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy is out of order.
Mr. Byrne: We are threatened with a serious scarcity of milk in Dublin. I hope it will not be like the fuel position and that milk will not become scarce.
Mr. Flanagan: Would it be possible for the Minister to make a statement in connection with the farm improvements scheme?
An Ceann Comhairle: I do not know but it does not arise. The Deputy can put down a question on the point some day.
Mr. Smith: As I explained in introducing the Supplementary Estimate, the amount provided for the universities is on foot of the general decision by the Government to increase the contributions to these institutions, and, as my Vote carried the provision for  general agriculture in relation to University College, Dublin, and for the faculty of dairy science in Cork, it should also carry the increased provision represented by the recent Government decision. On this question of seed wheat, I must say that I cannot take the view which has been advanced by Deputy Hughes. The amount of imported seed is 4,800 barrels, of which 1,600 barrels consist of foundation stock. I think that it is right and proper that that amount should be handed to Pedigree Seed Growers, Limited, for further propagation. I do not know what sort of organisation Deputy Hughes has in mind when he says that such seed could be more effectively handled by individual farmers. It might be possible to form such an organisation of farmers, but I do not know of any such organisation at the moment which would undertake that responsibility. I doubt very much if you could find any organisation which would accept the responsibility and the financial risk associated with such a venture. The balance of the seed wheat imported will be distributed in the ordinary way through the seed merchants who have been assembling seed wheat over the years.
Deputy Heskin argued that we should have availed of the services of the county committees of agriculture for this purpose. Without committing myself, I may say that I should be prone to avail of the assistance of county committees in every case in which that could be done. I believe that, in the main, these committees are composed of responsible people who know their job. In respect of the importation of seed oats from Great Britain, which we hope to effect, my Department is at present in touch with the county committees with a view to arranging for the distribution, through traders selected by them, of whatever quantity of seed we get. That is different from the distribution of seed wheat, because we have here a number of persons who have been doing a certain job for the community. When we import seed in this way, I think that those who have been in that business and who have taken the responsibility and the risk associated with it  should not be ignored. Subject to that reservation, I am in agreement with Deputy Heskin, that the advice of the county committees and their assistance and co-operation should be obtained on all possible occasions.
Deputy Heskin also referred to distribution of tea and sugar under the scheme for which provision is made in this Supplementary Estimate. He suggested that wider provision should have been made for farmers who were obliged to hire additional workers at their own expense. That is quite just but Deputy Heskin will realise that, in a matter of this kind, it is an enormous task to provide the necessary organisation in a short space of time, so as to get whatever limited supplies are available—and the supplies were limited—into the right channels so as to reach every deserving case. I find that, even with the limited amounts made available, there were some county committees which, for one reason or another, did not find it possible to devise a scheme whereby they could take advantage of the scheme. It is easy to appreciate their difficulty.
The secretary of the county committee was operating in the county town and these harvesting organisations were spread all over the county. It was very difficult for him to purchase supplies allocated to him and, in distributing them, to see that they got into channels which would reach those for whom they were intended. Taking it all in all, I think that a very good job was done. I was glad to hear thanks being offered to all those people who, whether they had any knowledge of the land or not, so magnificently came to the help of the farmers and the country in one of the most disastrous and depressing harvests we have had for a long time.
Mr. Heskin: What I wanted to urge was that, where casuals were employed, they should be classed as voluntary workers under such a scheme because, during the harvest period, they had to be catered for in rationed commodities. They worked very late at night and they had to be supplied with tea. For that reason, I suggest that, should the occasion again arise, such men should,  though paid, be classed as “voluntary”, so that they could come within the scope of such a scheme as was operated during the last harvest.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: May I correct an impression made by way of interjection by Deputy Hughes regarding the question I raised about Botanic Gardens and Albert College? Deputy Hughes indicated that these matters did not come——
Mr. Hughes: We are dealing with universities.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: So far as Albert College is concerned, I understand that it is related to University College.
Mr. Hughes: It is a university college.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: In the case of the Botanic Gardens, contrary to a widely-held opinion, the administration of these gardens is the direct responsibility of the Minister for Agriculture.
An Ceann Comhairle: Is there not a separate Vote for that purpose?
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: I gathered from Deputy Hughes that he was coupling the two as not coming within this Vote.
Mr. Flanagan: What is the amount of the recoupment to be made to the Dublin County Committee of Agriculture in respect of their expenses?
Mr. Smith: The quantity of tea allocated to County Dublin was 1,100 lbs. and the amount consumed was 855 lbs. The quantity of sugar allocated was 8,800 lbs., and the quantity consumed 3,500 lbs.
Mr. Hughes: The balance was returned?
Mr. Smith: It was not purchased. The secretary of the county committee of agriculture was informed of the amount of his allocation by the Department and instructed to purchase, from whatever trader he might select, and pay for, whatever amount he required within that allocation. We are bringing in this Vote now to recoup that expenditure. In the case of County Dublin, the secretary was free to purchase 8,800 lbs. of sugar but he  purchased only 3,500 lbs. In the case of tea, he was free to purchase 1,100 lbs. but he purchased only 855 lbs. Deputy Cogan referred to a number of matters which can be raised, as the Ceann Comhairle pointed out, on another occasion.
Question put and agreed to.
Minister for Justice (Mr. Boland): I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £3,130 be granted to defray the charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Office of the Minister for Justice.
The amounts required under sub-heads A (1), (2), and (3) represent increased salaries of members of the headquarters staff. The saving on sub-head A is due to delays in filling staff vacancies and the fact that new appointees enter at lower salaries than their predecessors. A sum of £350 a year has been provided for the part-time salary of a legal assistant to the Secretary of the Irish Legal Terms Advisory Committee. Then under sub-head F, provision is made for the purchase of sound and projection apparatus in the Film Censor's Office. The present apparatus is very old. It is 20 years old and it is actually damaging the films. Expenses incurred in connection with the censor's office are recovered in censorship fees but at the same time we have to make provision for them.
Vote put and agreed to.
Mr. Boland: I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £65,010 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending. 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Garda Síochána (No. 7 of 1925, No. 10 of 1926, No. 5 of 1937, No. 19 of 1941, Nos. 1 and 17 of 1945) and for payments of compensation  and other expenses arising out of service in the Local Security Force (No. 19 of 1946).
This Vote is entirely due to the increase in the cost-of-living allowances of the Gardaí. The system under which it is arranged is that a pay order is prepared but that pay order cannot be issued until the Garda Representative Body see it and have an opportunity of making any representations they wish to the Minister. I cannot give any details of the increases until I have seen the representative body. With savings, the actual amount we are looking for is £65,000.
Mr. Coogan: Will the Minister say whether the pay order is drafted?
Mr. Boland: Yes, it is ready. I expect to see the representative body shortly.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: Would the Minister say whether the amount granted covers the demands of the representative body in respect to their total claims? Have the negotiations concluded?
Mr. Boland: I think I can say that we have met them fairly but when the actual pay order is issued, they have the right to make further representations. I hope they will be satisfied, but that remains to be seen. I think they probably will be. I cannot say if they are satisfied until they have seen the pay order.
Mr. Coogan: You are not giving them the Northern Ireland scale?
Mr. Boland: No, but, on the whole, they are not doing too badly.
Vote put and agreed to.
Mr. Boland: I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £4,560 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for such of the Salaries and Expenses of the District Court as are not charged on the Central Fund (No. 27 of 1926, secs. 49 and 50; No. 15 of 1928, sec. 13; and  No. 48 of 1936, secs. 51 and 77) and for a Capitation grant.
This Vote is required mainly to meet extra expenses due to increased salaries and also to the fact that during the year six justices were ill. At the present moment there are four ill. That meant that we had to pay double salaries in these cases—the salary of the justice who was ill and the salary of the substitute. Another justice, District Justice Price, kindly took up the work of finishing the rules of the District Court. As he is giving his whole time to that, we had to relieve him of his judicial duties. That and increased bonuses explain the necessity for bringing in this Estimate.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: What was the percentage increase granted to district justices?
Mr. Boland: Increases in the case of district justices' salaries can be granted only by legislation. Something is being done in that direction but the legislation is not ready yet. The increases cannot be granted in the same way as those granted to civil servants or guards.
Mr. M. O'Sullivan: Will the increases be retrospective?
Mr. Boland: I cannot say. It must be done by legislation. We cannot increase the salary of a judge without a special Bill.
Mr. Byrne: Has the Minister given any consideration to the plight of widows of officers and men of the Garda Síochána and does he intend to grant them an increase in their allowances at an early date?
An Ceann Comhairle: This Vote deals with the District Court.
Mr. Coogan: May I ask the Minister what progress has been made with the pension scheme for District Court clerks? There is no provision in this Estimate for it.
Mr. Boland: We have not got very much further. The question is still under consideration by Finance. It is a question that must go with the  general question of temporary civil servants. They are not confined to the Department of Justice. Every Department has a number of them, and the Minister for Finance is not prepared to deal separately with those who are attached to the Department of Justice.
Mr. Coogan: Surely the Minister appreciates that there is considerable urgency in the case of some clerks who are about to retire, and who will be on a very small pittance unless something is done? I would ask him to press Finance to expedite the scheme.
Vote put and agreed to.
Minister for Social Welfare (Dr. Ryan): I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £650 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Expenses of the Maintenance of Criminal Lunatics in the Dundrum Asylum (8 and 9 Vict., c. 107).
There is not very much to be explained in connection with this Estimate. Increased salaries to the staff account for the greater part of the sum asked for. The balance is made up of small items with regard to uniforms, travelling expenses and an adjustment in the farm expenses. The farm costs more but the appropriations are also increased.
Vote put and agreed to.
Dr. Ryan: I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £22,310 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for Salaries and Expenses in connection with Unemployment Insurance and Employment Exchanges (including Contributions to the Unemployment Fund), Unemployment Assistance, the Special Register of Agricultural and Turf Workers, Insurance Against Intermittent Unemployment, for  certain services in connection with Food Allowances and for Expenses in connection with the provision of Labour for Harvest Work (9 Edw. 7, c. 7; 10 & 11 Geo. 5, c. 30; 11 Geo. 5, c. 1; 11 & 12 Geo. 5, c. 15; 12 Geo. 5, c. 7; No. 17 of 1923; Nos. 25 and 59 of 1924; No. 21 of 1926; No. 33 of 1930; Nos. 44 and 46 of 1933; No. 38 of 1935; No. 2 of 1938; No. 28 of 1939; No. 4 of 1940; No. 3 of 1941; No. 7 of 1942; No. 20 of 1943; and No. 23 of 1945).
There are three fairly large items responsible for this Vote. Firstly, there is an increase in salaries and wages as in the case of other services; secondly, the unemployment fund was bigger than was anticipated, and, therefore the two-sevenths contributed by the Government must be increased, and thirdly, there is a change in the Appropriations-in-Aid. The receipts from certain county boroughs came in about the end of the financial year 1946, but may not come in before the 31st March this year. There is just the fear that there may be a loss in the appropriations of £39,000.
Vote put and agreed to.
Minister for Lands (Mr. Moylan): I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £10 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for Salaries and Expenses in connection with Forestry (9 & 10 Geo. 5, c. 58, and No. 34 of 1928), including certain Grants-in-Aid.
This Supplementary Estimate is necessary in order to obtain the authority of the Dáil for additional expenditure on the felling and preparation for firewood of timber growing in State forests.
The cost of the operations will amount to approximately £12,000 and is chargeable to sub-head C (2) (Cultural Operations—Labour) of the Forestry Vote. Normal expenditure under that sub-head during the current financial year will probably exhaust  the full Vote provision. Savings on other sub-heads will be insufficient to meet the additional expenditure contemplated.
Owing to national necessities the large sales of timber during the 1946-47 year from State forests were much bigger than those estimated for under the Appropriation-in-Aid sub-head. It is proposed, subject to the concurrence of the Dáil, to provide the additional sum now required for sub-head C (2), less £1,000 representing the estimated net savings on other sub-heads, by the utilisation of the moneys received over and above the Appropriations-in-Aid budgeted for earlier in the year. A Token Supplementary Estimate of £10 is accordingly submitted for approval.
The provision or regulation of fuel supplies is not the responsibility of my Department. The Forestry Vote normally includes provision for the felling and marketing of a certain amount of firewood either in the form of logs or blocks. Abnormal weather conditions since early last summer have so disrupted the fuel supplies that exceptional measures are necessary this year.
A survey has been made of the available stocks of firewood in the State forests and it is anticipated that about 40,000 tons of firewood logs can be put on the market immediately. The method of sale will vary with the circumstances of each neighbourhood. In most places a proportion will be sold in small lots to householders in the vicinity of the forests, whilst the remainder will be sold to fuel merchants supplying towns and villages nearby. In some cases stocks may be in excess of the local needs and it may be possible, in consultation with the Department of Industry and Commerce, to provide a certain amount for industrial use. The supply, however, is limited and it will not be possible for the forestry division to accept orders from every source, or to guarantee to any industry, no matter how important, a supply of firewood. Colossal inroads have been made in the past two years on the resources of the State forests for firewood and other purposes and the steady denudation of growing timber is a matter of grave concern to my Department. Many of the trees that  had to be felled were of an age, species and type that are rare in this country and it is most regrettable from a forestry point of view that they had to be cut down.
In places where fuel is scarce it is hoped that private owners of firewood timber will make available as much firewood as possible. In that connection I should like to make it clear that apart from the Emergency Powers Order which, for military reasons, forbids the felling of roadside trees, there are still very definite restrictions on the felling of trees for any purpose, and that there is still a responsibility on my Department, and on the community as a whole, to ensure that trees required for shelter or amenity purposes, and immature trees generally, are not reckdessly or indiscriminately felled or otherwise destroyed.
Felling notices in regard to trees required for fuel receive and will continue to receive in the present situation urgent and sympathetic consideration. Where the number of trees concerned is not too large the notices are passed without question and notification is sent immediately to the local Gardaí so that felling need not wait on the full 21 days' period which, strictly speaking, the Forestry Act requires. Where the number of trees is large and it appears that replanting may be necessary, or where there are other special features requiring investigation, it may still be necessary to send a Preliminary Prohibition Order, but I can assure the House that all such cases will be dealt with as rapidly as possible. I think that the House will agree with me in expressing the hope that even in the existing circumstances there should be no ruthless or unnecessary cutting down of the timber stocks of the country, and that the utmost patience and discretion will be exercised with a view to preserving as far as possible trees which the country cannot afford to lose.
Mr. Coogan: I would like, first of all, to ask the Minister what steps have been taken this year and last year to make fuel available for the people of Thomastown, in my constituency, from the local wood at Grennan. The  people of Thomastown are in a bad position, for the extraordinary reason that supplies of turf never seem to be available there. They are dependent almost entirely on timber fuel and the position up to a week or a fortnight ago was so acute in Thomastown that it was discussed on Monday week last by the Kilkenny County Council.
The citizens of Thomastown had to form an association and take certain steps to interest local Deputies and the Minister for Industry and Commerce in the situation. I understand that, as a result, 500 tons of timber have been made available from Grennan Wood, but I would point out to the Minister that that 500 tons will not, in present circumstances, last a week in the Thomastown area, and unless turf can be got there I am afraid the people will have to continue to look to Grennan Wood for fuel supplies. I quite appreciate the Minister's problem in trying to preserve commercial timber, and prevent the destruction of our forests. At the same time, I would ask him to realise the serious situation that prevails in that area and to continue to do what he can to make fuel available, if necessary by lopping or by the cutting of scrub oak or scrub timber of that kind.
A similar situation applies in the rural areas south of Thomastown, and I would ask the Minister to consider making available from Castlemorris timber fuel for the local farmers in that area. Round Knocktopher, Hugginstown, and all that country, there is very little turf to be had. The nearest fuel merchants are from 12 to 20 miles distant, and the farmers are finding it increasingly difficult to carry on there. There is some timber on Flood Hall estate, which is due for division, and it might be possible to find non-commercial timber there which might be cut or made available for them. I can assure the Minister that the farmers in the whole of that area are in a shocking condition for want of fuel and I want to ask him to try, if at all possible, to make some provision for them when considering the felling of timber. It is a mystery to me how they have been able to carry on. At present they are going around cutting up ordinary  hedges and all that sort of thing to try and make do. I do not want to delay the House in the matter, but I would press for some consideration for the people in that area.
Having heard the Minister for Industry and Commerce last night it seems to me, with regard to this question of fuel, that we are faced with the problem of finding alternative fuel for many, many years to come, and I want to put it to the Minister that now is the time to consider a long-term policy for the growing of timber fuel. It seems to me that the deficiency in coal supplies, even under the rosiest prospects, will continue over a very long number of years and, as I pointed out last night, we will have a gap of approximately the equivalent of 1,500,000 upwards of tons of coal to make up in the future.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy must not begin a debate on fuel.
Mr. Coogan: I do not want to, but I think we have to face up to this problem. Over a long period of years we will have a tremendous gap to make up. It is doubtful if that gap is going to be made up by the importation of foreign coal and, even if it is made up by the importation of foreign coal, it is going to be a very expensive fuel to import. I want to put it to the Minister that he should seriously consider, now, on a long-term basis the possibility of developing lands for the growth of timber purely as a fuel.
Mr. Hughes: It would take 20 years.
Mr. Coogan: Even if timber does not mature for 20 years I say that we are faced with a position that for a long number of years we cannot get fuel from abroad. It is doubtful if ever again we will get imports on a normal level from England.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy is going pretty far.
Mr. Coogan: I just wanted to put that point to him. On the immediate problem of Dublin, I understand that in Wicklow there are large areas taken over by the Forestry Department and that there is a considerable quantity of non-commercial timber there, which  could be felled for immediate distribution in Dublin. I would ask the Minister to consider the possibility of having that timber made available as an emergency supply.
Mr. Byrne: The Minister has stated that he hopes that 40,000 tons of blocks will be on the market almost immediately. Congratulations to him for seeing to that. How does he hope to get it on the market immediately? Only yesterday, the Corporation of Dublin had made arrangements for the purchase and cutting down of 6,000 tons of timber and one of their contractors, who was a turf contractor with a licence for the haulage of turf, could not get a licence to use his lorries to haul timber. I raised that question last night, but got no reply except that the Minister would look into the matter. I raised it again just at the conclusion of the debate, to ask the Minister to get into touch with somebody, even at the late hour last night, in his Department about relaxing the regulations or restrictions that prevent a turf haulier from carrying timber blocks. Timber is now a substitute for turf.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Minister has nothing to do with these permits or licences.
Mr. Byrne: Will he use his good offices for that purpose? He says he is going to bring in the blocks immediately. If the corporation was refused a licence yesterday, does he anticipate the same difficulty? Will he get the authorities to-day to remove the restriction which leaves turf lorries lying idle at the moment?
An Ceann Comhairle: This Minister does not grant the permits and cannot remove the restrictions.
Mr. Byrne: I want to know. It would not be fair to deceive us, even unintentionally. He says that 40,000 tons of blocks will be on the market almost immediately. I ask, if we cannot get the licence to carry wood blocks, what does he propose to do? Following my protest last night, I sent a telegram this morning to the Minister for Industry and Commerce asking if he would immediately remove the  licence restrictions on the carrying of wood. If so, a lorry or two or perhaps ten would leave Galway for Dublin with wood blocks.
An Ceann Comhairle: The telegram was not sent to this Minister.
Mr. Byrne: You must forgive me if I bring it in. The Minister stated that 40,000 tons of blocks will be brought in almost immediately. We of the corporation committee thought we would have 6,000 tons——
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy has said that twice. The Minister has nothing to do with it. The Minister is dealing with 40,000 tons, not with the corporation.
Mr. Byrne: Then he will not have the same restrictions on him as are on the Dublin Corporation, or else he will not put the 40,000 tons on the market immediately, as he cannot if he cannot haul them in. We have an equal right to ask for a licence for the haulage of timber into Dublin. It is a very serious matter.
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy may have some right, but he has none to ask this Minister.
Mr. Byrne: Could I not ask him how he is going to get in the 40,000 tons?
An Ceann Comhairle: Quite—and the Deputy has not done so. The Deputy is dealing with 6,000 tons for the Dublin Corporation, which is a matter for another Minister.
Mr. Byrne: I am dealing with this 40,000 tons.
An Ceann Comhairle: My hearing must be failing me. I heard something about 6,000.
Mr. Byrne: Yes, as a comparison, which I hold I have a right to make, as other members had—to compare one item with another.
An Ceann Comhairle: Deputies have only such rights as the rules of order allow, and I am the judge of that.
Mr. Byrne: I am asking the Minister how he will get that timber in.
An Ceann Comhairle: That is quite in order.
Mr. Byrne: If a turf haulage contractor is not allowed to carry timber, will he put Army lorries on the work, or will he see that turf contractors are licensed to carry timber? It is a very serious matter for Dublin and other parts of the country.
Mr. Heskin: I agree that the Minister is trying to meet this situation to a very great extent, but I think he could go further, even in his own Department and its branches throughout the country, wherever there are State forests. They have done quite a lot but I believe that, with better co-operation outside, more fuel timber could be made available. Recently I got in touch with the Department in connection with the provision of firewood in the neighbourhood of Cappoquin and Dungarvan. People who were in the habit of producing this firewood for the local market were denied the right to enter the forests. They had always been doing it. There is a family named O'Donoghue, who were for years producing charcoal firewood and who recently turned on to the production of fuel timber, but they would not be allowed to enter the forests. I think that is unfair, since at the particular end at which they can get in to the Glenshallanne wood——
An Ceann Comhairle: Is it a State forest or private property the Deputy is referring to?
Mr. Heskin: It is a State forest. At that particular end of the wood, if the Department would grant concessions to the people on whose behalf Senator Goulding and myself made representations, much more firewood would be available, which could be distributed in Dungarvan, where they are in a desperate plight at present. I know that the Department has gone a long way to pile up timber at a different portion of the wood, but I suggest that the Minister tell his inspectors to let these people in in a particular part where I doubt if the Department would ever get wood out.
Reference was made to the owners of private woodland and forests. I suggest  that the inspectors get in touch with those people, so that they might produce firewood. It would be a very unpopular move if the Department looked for compulsory powers in this matter. More co-operation with private owners would result in their making more timber available. We are quite well aware that there is plenty of timber in those places.
The position in Youghal is difficult. Due to the scarcity of turf and firewood there recently, I had a telegram and a letter from a man asking if he could cut at the Ballysaggart area, to provide 600 tons of turf there. The people of that area have the turf tradition, but due to the bad weather they could not even remove the turf from the bogs and men were coming from Youghal with lorries and picking from the turf dumps some quantities in order to make certain supplies available. Adjacent to that particular town, there is plenty of timber, which is rotting there. If there were co-operation with owners of private property——
An Ceann Comhairle: The Deputy is going outside the Minister's jurisdiction.
Mr. Heskin: I am suggesting that co-operation would be better than compulsion and would make available for the people large quantities of timber in this terrible emergency and this cold weather.
Mr. Flanagan: I would like to take this opportunity to express my very deep appreciation of the Forestry Section of the Department for the very favourable manner in which they have dealt with the situation that was drawn to their attention with regard to the fuel position in the County Laoighis. I had occasion to call to the Forestry Section at the request of the Mountmellick Town Commissioners, and I requested that the Garryhinch wood, which lies between Mountmellick and Portarlington, be immediately opened, as there was firewood lying rotting there as useless timber, which could be provided for the people. I asked that the poorer and more deserving cases and those in need of fuel in the district might have  recourse to the wood and take their firewood from it.
I am certain that the officials at the helm in the Forestry Section are men of experience and realise the difficulties of the present time. If we had men of the same experience in other sections of the Minister's Department, such as the Land Commission, men with sympathy for the conditions that prevail in time of an emergency, there would be very little unreasonable opposition towards the Minister's Department from this side of the House. We have the right type of men in charge of the Forestry Department at the present time, and they deserve a word of praise for the manner in which they are dealing with the fuel situation. When their attention was called to the position in many areas they acted promptly. That was my experience of them as far as my own constituency goes. They immediately sent word to the local foresters to open up the woods for the local people. No delay was experienced. That was very encouraging because in my constituency we have a very large number of forestry workers.
We were all glad to hear the Minister's statement that he has arranged to put 40,000 tons of timber on the market at once. Deputies should be deeply grateful to him for making such a wise move. The Minister should give immediate directions to those in charge of the State forests that all their attention should now be directed to the felling of this timber and that ordinary forestry work, drainage, etc., should be left aside for the moment. In the State forest near Clonaslee in my constituency we have huge supplies of timber. All the labour available should be employed in felling it and in arranging for its immediate transport to Carlow, Athy and to every centre where timber is needed. I want to express my appreciation of the manner in which the Minister has interested himself in this matter. I hope that, in all the forests in my constituency, the earliest possible steps will be taken to fell the timber that is in them and make it available for immediate use. I agree that there is a large portion of timber in the forests  which cannot, and which should not, be cut down. Trees which afford shelter for shrubs come into that category.
There should also, I think, be greater co-operation than there is between the owners of private woods and the Minister's Department during this crisis. The Minister has made an appeal to them to come forward voluntarily and open their woods so that timber may be provided for the people in the present crisis. I hope his appeal will not fall on deaf ears. If they fail to respond, then I think the woods should be taken from them in the way that local authorities were empowered during the emergency to acquire turbary. These woods are of the utmost importance at the present time, and if the owners do not come forward voluntarily then they ought to be taken from them.
An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: That is altogether outside the scope of this Supplementary Estimate.
Mr. Flanagan: The Minister made an appeal to the owners of private woods.
An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: We cannot discuss that on this Supplementary Estimate.
Mr. Flanagan: The Minister's appeal is open for discussion. I have not much more to say on it. I would not be a bit afraid to go down to my own constituency and repeat the statements I have made here, that if the owners of private woods do not respond to the appeal which has been made to them in this crisis, then the woods should be taken from them. I hope the Minister will be able to make suitable arrangements for the haulage of this 40,000 tons of timber. Deputy Byrne referred to this point. I think the Minister should get in touch with the Department of Defence and see if Army lorries could not be employed on this work, so that all the available timber in the wooded districts of the country can be supplied to people who are in need of it with the least possible delay.
Mr. Hughes: Did the Minister say 40,000 tons of timber or 14,000 tons?
Mr. Moylan: 40,000 tons.
Mr. Hughes: My sympathies are completely in agreement with the views and sentiments expressed by the Minister in this matter. I feel that we must proceed very cautiously in dealing with our forestry interests. It would be a very regrettable thing if we were to denude the country of timber by slaughtering young and immature trees. That would not be justified except in a grave national emergency. It is true that we are passing through a grave emergency now. Deputies appear to be under the impression that we can rely to a very considerable extent on our timber reserves to meet this fuel situation.
I think that is an absurd suggestion. We must, of course, at the present time do that to a considerable extent, but in the normal course of events we ought to look for the proper sort of fuel for domestic purposes instead of setting out to get timber. I think the House regrets that a situation has come about which forces the Forestry Department to slaughter rare specimens of timber. The Minister told us that young immature trees have been slaughtered. As a matter of fact, before he did so, it was my intention to ask him to what extent our forests could bear an increase in the amount of timber we are cutting at the present time. The impression which the Minister's statement conveyed to me was that we are cutting timber at the present time to an extent that is not wise or advisable from a forestry point of view. The present emergency has forced us to cut young immature timber, but in the normal course of events, those in charge of the forests would not dream of doing that. In that, this fuel situation is reacting detrimentally on our forestry interests.
I think Deputies should appreciate the importance of forestry from the climatic and drainage point of view as well as in relation to our future requirements in timber. Our aim should be to produce commercial timber rather than firewood. For that reason I should like to warn the Minister that he must watch carefully the interests of our forests, and only allow to be cut what is suitable for firing, and what is absolutely essential in this time of  emergency. I think from what the Minister has said that he appreciates the danger there is of doing grave harm to our forestry interests.
It is true that nearly every town in the country is feeling acutely the lack of firewood, as other fuel is not available, and, therefore, timber ought to be made available as far as possible. The Minister has suggested that private interests could be more helpful, and I think he is right there. I think the isolated timber ought to be made available in this crisis, timber standing on tillage land which is harmful from a tillage point of view. We should aim at using up that sort of timber rather than attacking immature timber in a forest which may be very useful in later years commercially.
I do not think the Minister has made it clear, and I think he ought to make it clear, that permits are still necessary for the cutting of timber. He did not say definitely that they were. But the law has not been changed in that respect. I feel that the Minister ought to make it clear that, while there is some relaxation with regard to certain timber growing by the roadside—I am glad that that Order has been relaxed to some extent—permits are still necessary for the cutting of that sort of timber.
Captain Giles: I appreciate very much the efforts of the Forestry Department in making so much timber available to the public in the present crisis. Like Deputy Hughes, I should like to issue a word of warning to the Forestry Department to deal carefully with forest lands. They are being denuded all over the country. I think that trees which may be of any service should not be cut down; that only scrub trees should be cut down.
In my area there is a lot of useless timber on large estates which have been divided by the Land Commission, the forestry belts on which are still in the hands of the Land Commission. So far as I know, they have cleared all the good serviceable timber off these belts of five or 10 acres. They have sold them to Messrs. T. and C. Martin. In these belts there is a lot of scrub timber and  hazel and laurel which is of no use to anybody and will have to be cut at a later stage in order to allow of the replanting of these belts. I would ask the Land Commission to throw open these little cut-away belts to the public under the supervision of their own gangers and allow farmers and cottiers to cut the timber there which would be very good for firewood. It would relieve those local areas of the difficulties at present existing. Sooner or later this timber will have to be cut to allow of replanting and now is the time to clear these belts. I ask the Minister to look into that matter. It would put a vast amount of scrub timber on the market and ease the difficulties which are being experienced in many homes. In my constituency near Summerhill there is an estate on which the good timber was cut by Messrs. T. & C. Martin two or three years ago and there is nothing left there now only old laurel, fir, hazel and other decaying and knocked-down trees. In fact the place is lying derelict at present; it is really a wilderness. If that were thrown open to the public, I am satisfied they would make a very good job of cleaning it up. Otherwise it will cost a lot of money later on in the employment of gangers and men to clear it. Now is the time to let the local people clear it. They would be doing a good job for the Minister and I, therefore, ask him to review the position and to see if that can be done.
Mr. Coburn: The Minister mentioned that he expects to make available immediately about 40,000 tons of timber for firewood. I do not know whether it is the intention of his Department to deliver that in areas nearest to the source of supply. I respectfully submit that the money to be spent in the cutting of this timber will come out of the pockets of the people all over the Twenty-Six Counties and, if at all possible, that timber should be distributed on an equitable basis throughout the whole of the Twenty-Six Counties. It is all very well for Deputy Flanagan to throw bouquets at the Minister and tell him what a grand man he is, especially when one considers that a good turn  was done to the Deputy's constituency of Leix and Offaly. I am speaking generally, however. The people in my area, as Deputy Walsh knows, do not usually complain unless they have cause for it. We do a lot of things on our own, and County Louth is not blessed with a lot of timber. The Minister might consider sending down a little of this timber to the people in Louth to relieve the situation there.
It has been suggested that the Minister should go in for a long-term policy so far as the growing of trees for the provision of fuel is concerned. With all respect, I do not think that would be a feasible proposition. We are only passing through a temporary difficulty and to grow timber here for fuel in my opinion is not a proposition that should commend itself. This country being a small one, we can only grow a certain amount of timber. You cannot grow trees overnight. It takes from 30 to 60 years. We are a rather impatient people and we think that all we have to do is to will a thing and it will be done. But trees will not grow overnight, even though they happen to be planted in Ireland. I do not think we should take advantage of this crisis to undertake what I think in the opinion of sensible men will not be a paying proposition so far as the future of the country is concerned.
In regard to the 40,000 tons of timber which are to be made available immediately, there is something contradictory between the statement of the Minister and the replies of the Minister for Industry and Commerce to questions put to him in this House. Some weeks ago the Minister stated that the quantity of that timber available was very small. Therefore, I am glad that the Minister has been in a position to state that he has 40,000 tons of timber available. I should like him to go a little further in the matter of issuing licences for the felling of trees, which the Minister for Industry and Commerce has refused, and which would remove a great deal of friction. The owners of trees should be allowed to cut them, not alone along the road, but also at a certain distance from the road. I should like the Minister to get in touch with the Department of Defence,  which I understand is the main stumbling block with regard to the relaxation of the Order made during the war which prevented the cutting of these particular trees. I am not referring to commercial timber, but to old trees which are not fit for any commercial purpose and are only useful for fuel purposes. I think that Order should be done away with. There is no necessity for it now, if there was a necessity for it even during the war. A great deal of timber for fuel could be placed at the disposal of the people in my area if that Order were modified, if not entirely dispensed with, so that the trees to which I refer could be cut down. I am glad the Minister has 40,000 tons of timber but I should like him, when replying, to deal with the question of its ultimate destination and to say whether it will be distributed universally or confined to the areas immediately adjoining the forests in which it will be cut.
Mr. L.J. Walsh: I make an appeal to the Minister not to enforce restrictions which have been in operation up to the present by the Forestry Department. We are dealing with a very abnormal situation and we must adopt abnormal measures to meet it. I have listened for the past week in this House to a discussion of the fuel situation by way of questions on the Order Paper, yesterday's motion and this Estimate for the Forestry Department. I suggest that every Deputy can do a great deal to relieve the situation, particularly in the case of the poorer section of our community. The local public body of which I am a member approached estate owners in the district, within a radius of four or five miles of the town. We met with a very generous response. They offered firewood, not even on commercial terms, but free, so as to relieve the poorer sections, and it is with the poorer sections that we as public representatives should mainly concern ourselves because the better-off people have provided for their winter supplies. That is a well-known fact. I appeal to every member of this House, when he returns to his district, this week-end, and next week, if he is not called back here, to devote his efforts to providing fuel  locally as far as possible. The people of this country are as generous and as Christian, when appealed to, to assist the section that I refer to, as the people anywhere else in the world.
A great deal of political capital has been made out of the fuel situation. I have no desire to create acrimonious discussion on this Vote. I appeal to the members to try to assist the people of their districts. We in Louth live in a non-turf area and it is our particular duty to get all the wood fuel that it is possible to secure for those people during this unfortunate emergency. We have surmounted greater difficulties in the past. It is true that in our lifetime we have never been confronted with such a situation as this, but we will not do any good or help to solve the problem by badgering one another. Let us all forget our political differences for the present, stand shoulder to shoulder and come out and help the people who need help most.
Mr. Moylan: I would like to take this opportunity of emphasising again that the policy of the Forestry Department is concerned with the growing of commercial timber and not with the production of firewood. In the areas planted by the Forestry Department there is bound to be quite a quantity of non-commercial timber, and all this as far as it can be made available will be made available to the people, and the fellings will be made everywhere there is a State forest so that the distribution of the timber that is to be cut will be widespread. But it is not the business of the Department to market it. The market, for the Forestry Department, must be at the forest, and the question of distribution is a matter entirely for another Department. I did not know until Deputy Giles spoke that laurel is a valuable firewood.
Captain Giles: Faith, they are.
Mr. Moylan: I thought from Deputy Flanagan's statement that all the laurels in Laoighis and Offaly were cut down and were being presented to me to-day. We cannot try to meet the particular difficulty at the moment by methods that will create greater difficulties later on. Our concern principally  is for commercial timber, and we have cut down because of the emergency much timber that we would like to keep growing, in order to meet the particular difficulties of building and so on, during the past few years.
I want to make it quite clear that the licensing system must continue. Anyone passing through the country will realise how denuded it has been of timber for the past few years, to the general detriment, and if we remove the licensing system we will be doing a great damage because men will cut down timber that is valuable from the commercial point of view and utilise it for fuel. From that point of view, instead of being a cure for our diseases, it would be merely making our diseases much more malignant.
Therefore, we must insist on the licensing system. But there has been no difficulty created by the Department in the issue of licences for the felling of timber for fuel. All we need is the assurance that the timber about to be felled is not commercially of use. Generally, the local Guards have made the examination for us very swiftly and the permits have issued without any delay. Where any urgent case has cropped up within the past few weeks, we have not waited for the Garda report; we have sent inspectors out when any quantities of fuel had to be cut, so as to make the timber available at once.
There was a great deal of heat displayed yesterday about the fuel situation. Reading the paper this morning, I was amazed at the number of misstatements made in regard to fuel and the situation generally. This fuel situation is a mere passing emergency. In 1944, at the end of March, the Forestry Department had 8,000 tons of timber in hands that they could not sell; in March, 1945, they had 3,000 tons in hands that they could not sell, and in March, 1946, they had 6,000 tons in hands that they could not sell. All through the emergency it was open to local authorities and fuel merchants to undertake schemes for the cutting down and distribution of timber, and wherever these schemes were undertaken, the fullest co-operation was given by the Department of Forestry.
I have been wondering what Deputy  Heskin meant when he spoke about co-operation between the Forestry Department and the private owners. For every ton of timber in the hands of the State, there are nine tons in the hands of private owners, and the only co-operation we can give them is to see that the licences demanded for felling are swiftly issued, and that has been done. We have, during the war years, developed our methods of dealing with firewood from the State forests to such an extent that we have now 18 saw mills as against four in 1940. That shows that we have not been quite blind to the fact that an emergency in regard to fuel might occur at any particular moment.
We undertook a big scheme of firewood production for the Dublin Corporation in 1944 and supplied a good deal of timber and the scheme was discontinued at the request of the Dublin Corporation. I do not think the Forestry Department was lacking in foresight in regard to that matter.
We have a long-term policy, and it must remain a long-term policy, for the production of commercial timber. I think it is a most valuable policy, and a thing to which everybody, including every Deputy, should give his fullest support. I may be wrong, but I have had for many years an idea, and I have been preaching the idea, that not alone should we have a long-term policy in regard to the production of commercial timber, but we should also have a long-term policy in regard to the production of firewood. It is very doubtful if the fuel situation of the future will ever be the same as it was in the past. It is very doubtful if the uses to which timber may be put will be confined to those for which timber was utilised in the past, and I have the idea that much land regarded as unplantable now for the production of commercial timber might be usefully taken over for the production of the less valuable firewood timber.
In the Forestry debate we had Deputies suggesting that certain areas in the country should be planted. The Forestry Department know the areas that are and can be planted, but many of the districts which Deputies suggest  should be taken over for forestry are, to our knowledge, impossible of use for commercial purposes, but they might possibly be utilised for the development of a long-term firewood policy. I think there is something in that. The real reason why we cannot develop forestry—there are passing reasons— is the lack of land. As I have said, there are passing reasons, such as difficulty in getting wire and seeds and plants, but these things will pass. The great difficulty about the development of forestry is the getting of land, and Deputies who talk glibly about land being available in their constituencies for forestry purposes do not realise the difficulties the Forestry Department have in acquiring these lands, particularly when those who claim ownership of the lands have neither a moral nor a legal right to them.
I would like Deputies to consider that the development of forestry here deserves much more support from public representatives than it is getting, and I would like to assure Deputies that what the Forestry Department must be concerned with as their main policy is the production of commercial timber. So far as any side issue is concerned, such as the provision of firewood to meet an immediate crisis, the Forestry Department will do their very best to meet the difficulties of the people at all times.
Mr. Byrne: The Minister has not said a word in reply to my point as to how he hopes to get the 40,000 tons if the turf haulage contractors have not got the licences to carry wood blocks.
An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: That is not a matter for the Forestry Department.
Mr. Moylan: The Deputy should put that to the Minister for Industry and Commerce.
Mr. Byrne: I have done so. Are you going to do so? Are you going to ask the Minister for Industry and Commerce if he will allow turf haulage contractors to carry wood blocks?
An Leas-Cheann Comhairle: The subject of transport is out of order.
Mr. Byrne: You were not here when the Minister made the statement.
Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. Lemass): I will now make this statement. The Lord Mayor of Dublin came to me about this matter after it arose at the corporation committee meeting, which the Deputy attended, and because of the Lord Mayor's approach, action was decided upon, long before the Deputy decided to create a scene in the Dáil.
Mr. Byrne: Can I get an assurance—
Mr. Lemass: The Deputy will get no assurance from me at the moment.
Vote put and agreed to.
Minister for Industry and Commerce (Mr. Lemass): I move:—
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £300,000 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Office of the Minister for Industry and Commerce, including certain Services administered by that Office and payment of certain Subsidies and sundry Grants-in-Aid.
The additional money is needed under a variety of sub-heads, and I propose to deal with them in the order in which they are set out on the paper. The first is a contribution to the International Labour Office. It was discovered at the International Labour Organisation Conference at Montreal last year that this State was listed as in arrears in the payment of the annual contribution. Examination revealed that that was due to the practice of paying the contribution for the calendar year at the end of the following calendar year. The position is being regularised by paying two contributions this year.
The largest single item of the Supplementary Vote is concerned with food subsidies. Additional moneys are required in respect of flour and bread. There is an anticipated saving of £6,500 on tea, but the total additional sum required is £444,505. The higher subsidy required in respect of flour is due to the much higher percentage of native wheat in the grist being used  now. The fact that the imports of foreign wheat have fallen substantially during the last few months necessitated a substantial lowering in the percentage of hard wheats mixed in the grist. That has necessitated payment of an increased subsidy in respect of flour in this financial year. The actual amount that would be paid in subsidy would be determined by a variety of considerations, but it will be appreciated that payment in the financial year has to be based upon the outgoings in that period, and does not necessarily take into account the all-over proportion of native to imported wheat, in the cereal year, which runs from September to September.
Mr. Norton: What is the present percentage?
Mr. Lemass: About 12½ per cent. foreign. The other factors which have necessitated an increase in flour subsidy are the higher costs of imported wheat and the cost of certain flour which has been imported where wheat could not be procured. It is also necessary to provide for increased subsidy in respect of bread. Following on the payment of increased emergency bonus to workers employed in Dublin bakeries last year, the amount of the subsidy payable to the larger Dublin bakeries was increased, so that the price of bread would remain unchanged.
The increased amount necessitated under that heading was £25,000. There was, however, some saving upon the total bread subsidy by reason of the reduction in the consumption of bread in the latter half of last year when the rate of extraction of flour from wheat was increased. Since last year, however, there has been a further increase in the wages of bakery workers, following on a recommendation of the Labour Court. That increase in bakery wages will necessitate an expansion of the bread subsidy up to £120,000 in a year. However, only £20,000 is required in this financial year under that heading. It is probable, however, that the bread subsidy will be substantially increased next year, because it is clear that other smaller bakeries in Dublin will be able to support a claim for higher subsidy also and many of the provincial bakers' associations are, I know, preparing  claims on the same grounds. The reduction in the tea subsidy is due entirely to the exhaustion of imported stocks held by Tea Importers, Limited.
The increase under sub-head B (1) was anticipated when the main Estimate was being prepared. It was known that the amount of the company's expenditure in the financial year would be in excess of the £20,000 voted. The position of the company was under consideration at the time. Certain decisions have been taken which will necessitate legislation. The Supplementary Vote ensures that the company's operations can be continued until the Dáil has decided on its future programme.
The increased expenditure in respect of mineral exploration is consequent on a decision to undertake a programme of exploration by drilling in the area of the gypsum deposits at Carrickmacross and Kingscourt. The total cost of the new exploration programme to be carried out in that area will be about £44,000, but it is only expected to commence in the month of March, so that the total expenditure in the current financial year will not exceed £1,000.
Mr. Norton: Where is the area?
Mr. Lemass: The gypsum area of Cavan-Monaghan.
Mr. Hilliard: Is it in County Meath or County Cavan?
Mr. Lemass: There may be some part of Meath in the area, but it is the whole of the gypsum area which is being explored for a number of purposes. It is necessary to get fuller information as to the quality and extent of the gypsum deposits in connection with a possible development of the manufacture of sulphate of ammonia. It is considered that there may be some possibility of locating coal, and perhaps even salt, in the area. In any event, it is desirable to have the most complete information concerning the deposit which is, I think, regarded as the most valuable mineral deposit in the country.
These are all the items in respect of which additional amounts are required,  except the additional Grants-in-Aid provided for in the Estimate in respect of Bord na Móna, consequent on the expansion of its operations, and the provision relating to the finances of the Labour Court which was established by legislation since the main Estimate was passed. The various items of expenditure in respect of the court are set out in different sub-heads of the Estimate. The total additional amount required is £527,828, but, because of savings under other sub-heads of £227,828, the net additional sum needed is £300,000.
Mr. Coogan: I should have welcomed some provision in the Estimate for the exploration of our coalfields. I want again to put it to the Minister that, in view of the fuel situation here, which so far as we can see now is going to be with us for many years to come, his Department might consider a long-term policy in relation to coal development. At the moment, our annual production of coal is somewhere in the neighbourhood of 160,000 tons.
Of that, we produce 100,000 tons of anthracite in Castlecomer, the balance coming from Leitrim, with probably some small production in Slieveardagh. There is every reason to believe that, particularly in the Kilkenny and Leitrim coalfields, further production is possible, and that, with State aid, that production might be stepped up to something in the neighbourhood of 250,000 tons a year. That would be roughly one-tenth of our normal fuel requirements and I want to make a plea for the development of our coalfields.
I feel that we have concentrated too much on turf, to the neglect of our coal areas. As I stated last night, expert opinion takes the view that the productive capacity of the Kilkenny coalfield has not yet been ascertained, and that it is necessary to have drillings made there in order to see what the productive capacity may be. In addition, I believe it is possible under modern scientific developments—it may be possible through some geo-physical investigation—to establish whether or not there is coal elsewhere throughout the country, particularly beneath our bogs. As I understand the matter,  the geological surveys of the past were superficial surveys. They were based upon an examination of the projecting rocks here and there throughout the country, but where, as in the case of the bogs, it was not possible to examine the rock formation, no opinion could have been expressed, and some experts hold to the view that it is possible that there may be rock formation beneath our bogs. When we consider that one-eighth of our country is covered by bog, the expenditure by the State of a few thousand pounds on an exploration of our bog areas is worth while.
I do want to impress on the Minister the importance of considering this industry. Even at the end of the next ten years of turf development, we shall have a big gap to fill. It is entirely in the lap of the gods what amount of coal we shall be able to import from abroad. It is not clear what amount of coal we shall be able to get from Britain. The price of imported coal will be so prohibitive that I think it is worth considering whether we cannot step up our native production in order to lessen the gap between native fuel and imported coal. Assuming that, in ten years, we had 1,000,000 tons of machine won turf available, we should still have the equivalent of 1,500,000 tons of coal to make up. For that reason, we should consider whether we cannot do something to bridge the gap by the production of Irish coal.
I notice in to-day's paper that the Railwaymen's Union, whose members are affected by the fuel position on the railways, have demanded that the Irish coalfields be opened immediately and that steps be taken to increase the production of Irish coal in the hope of saving the railway system. In that connection, I should like to point out that, in answer to a Parliamentary question in the British House of Commons, the Minister for Mines stated that 3,000 Irishmen had now been absorbed into the mines in Great Britain. On a previous occasion, when I mentioned this matter, I was told that the training of a miner was a long-term job and that, under the law, two years were required to train a fully-fledged miner. I know that that is the law but, during the emergency, men were put  into the mines in Great Britain and trained in from three to six months. It has also been possible to absorb 3,000 Irishmen into that industry in Britain.
It is clear that these men were unskilled when they went into the mines. I can speak with personal knowledge of the Castlecomer area and we lost no great number of miners from there. According to figures recently given to me, only about half a dozen of our men went across to the mines in Great Britain. It would seem, therefore, that the men taken into the mines in Great Britain are really trainees. I cannot see why we should not take on the job of training miners here and getting down to business in developing our mines. Development is a long-term job. If you have to drill, it will be a long time before you can complete your investigations and say you are in a position to go ahead with the commercial development of coal in a given year. Be that as it may, we have to consider our coal as an alternative fuel, particularly for industry. As I have said, there are plenty of pockets of outcrop coal in the Kilkenny area which could be utilised as an emergency proposition. I think that all restrictions should be removed to enable groups of persons who are interested to develop outcrop coal. Landowners might be permitted to quarry for coal if they can get the necessary labour. In many pockets, the quantity of coal available is considerable. Upwards of 1,000 tons of coal are to be obtained by quarrying methods in several of these pockets. As the present situation may continue for a considerable time, we should take steps to make that coal available to private citizens and to industry. I appeal to the Minister to get the technical experts of his Department to face up to this problem and to see whether we could not step up our coal production and reduce considerably our dependence on foreign coal.
Mr. Norton: On a few sub-heads of this Estimate, I should like to get information. The sum of £444,000 is being made available for additional food subsidies. I understood from the Minister recently that he proposed to import  sugar and that the normal retail price of that sugar, based on the purchase price, would be, approximately, 9d. per lb. Can the Minister say whether any portion of the subsidy now being provided is earmarked in respect of the sugar which it is proposed to import? As we shall not have an opportunity of raising this matter until the Minister's main Estimate comes before the House, would the Minister indicate at this stage whether he is prepared to extend the food subsidies to the imported sugar so that it would be made available to consumers at the present price and so that they would not be required to pay what is, apparently, estimated as the economic price—9d. per lb.? Sugar is a staple commodity. It is used extensively in workingmen's homes and, if there is a case to be made for subsidisation of food, a particularly strong case can be made for the subsidisation of sugar because of the part it plays in the dietary of young children.
I should like to refer to the advance which it is proposed to make to the Mineral Development Company. It is true that our experience of coal mining operations has not produced the highly satisfactory results that yesteryear we thought were awaiting us. That ought not to deter us from pushing forward our coal exploratory work as much as possible, nor should it dismay us in attempting to tackle the very serious task which lies ahead. It is quite clear to everybody that we shall never get coal from outside with the same ease or in the same abundance or at the same price as obtained before the war.
If one is to judge by what has been said by people in coal producing countries and by the statements which have been made by the authorities of the British coal industry, on which, in the past, we have mainly relied, it looks as if we shall always be depending for a supply of coal from some country with coal to export. In a situation of that kind, it seems to me to be good national housekeeping for us to endeavour to produce as much as possible from such coal deposits as are in the country. I should like to see more money spent in endeavouring to develop these deposits. It may be that these deposits are not as good as we should like them to be. It  may be that the seams are not as thick as seams are in Britain or elsewhere. I do not think we are in a position to pick and choose. The winning of coal anywhere on a tolerably good, mercantile basis is a policy which we shall be coerced into adopting because of the character of the world fuel position.
It has been stated by geologists that there is an enormous quantity of coal in the Leinster basin, the centre of which may be said to be Carlow and the adjoining county of Kilkenny. These geologists have certified that there are very substantial deposits there but, of course, a geological survey really takes cognisance of what is found on the top and what is deemed to be underneath. It might well be that the forecasts of the geologists in that respect might not prove to be well-founded but it might also transpire from boring operations that the deposits were in fact better than the geologists thought, that the seams were bigger and were not as faulted as some speculators in this matter, have hazarded an opinion.
I should like to see the resources and technical skill of this mineral company utilised to exploit the coal deposits throughout the country. I should like to see every possible effort directed towards ascertaining how far it is possible for us to get access to these deposits and to make them merchantable for our people. I am afraid that the Minister so far has adopted, in respect to coal production here, a policy which will not give very satisfactory results. It is not easy to get a person to invest in the production of a commodity which he cannot even see and the existence of which beneath the surface is highly problematical. It is even difficult to get investors to invest money in projects, the raw materials of which they can see and feel. The investor in a relatively undeveloped country always shies away from investing his money in projects of a highly speculative character such as coal production inevitably is. I would suggest to the Minister that in this matter he might give some consideration to the desirability of creating, in respect of coal deposits, a State organisation on the lines, for instance, of Bord na Móna with a view to charging it with  the responsibility of getting at such coal deposits as we have and making them available for our own people, to satisfy in part our own requirements, so that in future we may not be so helplessly dependent on imported supplies as we have been during the past seven years. I, at all events, am satisfied that if we are going to have a speed-up in production along the lines of utilising and exploiting our coal deposits, it can only be on the basis of a State organisation with capital resources to develop and exploit our coalfields to the full. Reliance on private enterprise in a matter of this kind is sheer futility.
There is a provision in this Estimate for the salaries and expenses of the Labour Court. I should like to take this opportunity to pay a tribute to the very satisfactory work which the court has performed since it was created. I think the tactful, patient and understanding way in which the court has handled the disputes referred to it has produced a very considerable element of peace in industry, in a very yeasty period. One has only to reflect on what the position might have been if there were no such tribunal to adjudicate on the variety of wage claims which have been dealt with in the past six months. I think the Labour Court has performed a very valuable service. It has certainly justified the high hopes which I held out for it when the Bill which created it was being piloted through this House. In fact, in a short time and under a relatively simple measure, the Labour Court has been able to do a million times more for peace and disciplined organisation in industry than the unfortunate Trade Union Act of 1941 could ever have done. I do not want to accuse the present Minister for Industry and Commerce of any responsibility for the production of that monster. I am quite sure that if his sagacity were brought to bear on that Act, it would never have seen the light of day, seething as it was with acrimony, venom, stupidity and probably every other vice which leaves its mark on the human race.
I would suggest to the Minister, now that he has got this matter into calmer waters and that a more intelligent appreciation of the situation is emerging,  he might tell the House and bodies in the country who are interested that he does not see any further use for the 1941 Trade Union Act, that it will be repealed and put aside as an evil memory, as a warning to intemperate Ministers of the unwisdom of doing things in a bull-in-the-china-shop fashion and in that way indicating his desire to avoid every possible friction so far as our industrial relations are concerned. It is probably the one and only blot on our whole trade union legislation. Now that the Labour Court is functioning so satisfactorily, as I am sure the Minister acknowledges, he might take this opportunity to tell the country generally that he does not see any further use for the 1941 Trade Union Act and that, with respect to any functions which are still dischargeable under that Act, he will see whether he cannot dovetail them into the functions of the Labour Court and so get rid of that piece of legislative absurdity.
Mr. Hughes: Like the two Deputies who have spoken, I am interested in the question of coal development, but I think I must say, with this difference, that I appreciate the limitations of our coal deposits. The old Dáil before the Treaty set up a commission to investigate our resources, the secretary of which was the late Darrell Figgis. I remember reading the report of that commission, and he estimated that the deposits in the Leinster coalfield might be put at 299,000,000 tons. I think as a matter of fact that that statement had a propaganda value more than anything else and it served its purpose. There is nothing like 299,000,000 tons in the Leinster coalfield, in my opinion.
We would all wish very much that there was but, from further investigations that have been made since that time, I think it is appreciated in the Minister's Department that there is nothing like that quantity there. As a matter of fact the expert attached to that commission, a Belgian geologist, Mr. Simon, applied the Alps theory to the Leinster coalfield. There was a good deal of over-faulting of our coal deposits, and as a matter of fact it was absurd to apply such a theory at all. The greatest difficulty, so far  as I know, about the Leinster coalfield is the uncertainty connected with it. There is only one certain seam, the Jarrow seam. That was the original scheme that existed some years ago. On the Castlecomer side it has been properly developed by proper mining methods. Quite a lot of capital was invested there by the particular company that dealt with it. On the Carlow side, the seam is far more uncertain. The difficulty is that you get a seam and it disappears quite suddenly. Then you search around again and you may strike that seam in another direction. I do not know whether Deputy Norton remembers an old man, a Mr. Reid, who worked there. If the Deputy were down in the workings he would see that they resembled the hind leg of a dog. There was no systematic working carried out at all. He worked in one direction for a certain time and when the seam disappeared completely in that direction he tried to get a bit of coal in another direction.
Mr. Norton: I think the Deputy will agree that the methods of finding coal at that time did not represent a highlight of scientific progress.
Mr. Hughes: If there is any uncertainty about the coal seams it makes people who are investing their money very anxious. A great deal of boring has been carried out in that district. I am sure the Minister could give a good deal of information on it, if he got due notice. I am aware that nearly that whole area is leased—the Deputy may know that too—and I know that there are very drastic conditions attached to the leases so far as there is an obligation on the lessee to develop the area. I wonder if the Minister has insisted that the terms and conditions which are attached to the lease are carried out.
So far as the No. 2 seam is concerned it embraces a very considerable area. I am not sure, but I believe that one lease covers nearly all of it. Now while it would not be wise to develop our coal resources to such an extent that we would exhaust them in 20 or 30 years, I believe, at the same time, that there is room for further development.  I would be inclined to encourage private enterprise as far as possible but when our private enterprise is not doing the job and where there are leases there in existence I think the Minister should insist on and press for the fulfilment of the conditions which are attached to the lease.
I understand that conditions on the Munster side, and even on Slieveardagh, are very uncertain still. I believe that, in some cases, a seam is actually perpendicular and not horizontal: that a seam could actually be out-topping at a point and that, 50 yards away from it, one might have to go down 900 feet to get the same seam. There may be difficulties so far as working our coal is concerned but, as I said before, I believe that, in the circumstances in which we live now and the uncertainty of our fuel supplies in the future, the Minister should have our resources fully explored and fully examined. I know that a good deal of exploratory work and boring has been carried out. I feel sure that the Minister has confidential information on the matter and I would be glad if he would avail of some opportunity of telling us the position.
On the question of bread subsidies there is just one local matter to which I would like to call the Minister's attention. There was a local bakery in Carlow which used, approximately, 50 sacks of flour a week and the owner at that time was paid a considerable amount of money in subsidy. The bakery exchanged hands and there was some difficulty about the transfer of the licence. The bakery is now producing non-batch bread and there is no subsidy available to that particular bakery for the production of batch bread. I am not concerned so much about the owner of the bakery as I am about the poor of the town. Provision should be made for the payment of a subsidy to this baker in order to make cheap bread available to the poor of Carlow. I think it was unfortunate that there was some difficulty about the transfer of the licence from one baker to the other and that it is the poor who have lost the benefit of the subsidy to the extent to which it was in operation before the transfer occurred. I hear that the matter has  already been brought to the Minister's notice and I am most anxious that the Minister will look into it again, not so much from the owner's point of view as from the point of view of the people who are entitled to subsidised bread.
Captain Giles: A Chinn Comhairle, I am informed that the Minister is going to spend some money in the exploration of gypsum deposits near Kingscourt, County Cavan. That certainly is something to which we can all look forward because we are satisfied that this deposit is of high value to the nation. This industry is very badly needed in a thickly populated area of poor people. It will also help to decentralise industry. I would ask the Minister to do his utmost to establish this industry and to have it opened up to the fullest extent. I believe that there are immense possibilities there and I think that any money spent in exploration will bring good results. I would like to have the position as regards coal in the country cleared up. Many people say that there is plenty of coal in the country but that the Government will not work it. I do not agree. I think that if we had coal in this country the British would not have left it there 750 years without taking the last piece of it out of the country. It would be no harm to have borings made to find out definitely once and for all if we have coal of commercial value in this country and if it can be worked on a commercial basis. Many people say that the vast deposits of coal in Britain and Scotland do not stop with the sea and that the same plain of coal should extend across to Ireland. Well, I hope that that is true but we will never know definitely until we have some borings made, and so I think that the best thing that the Minister can do is to get them done.
Mr. Lemass: I think Deputy Coogan did not advert to the fact that this is a Supplementary Estimate and, consequently, contains provision only for certain activities not covered by the main Vote. The main Estimate for the Department contained provision for mineral exploration work, for the ordinary work of the geological survey and for certain surveys by Mianraí,  Teoranta, which are not mentioned in the Supplementary Estimate.
So far as mineral exploration is concerned, particularly the exploration of coal measures, a great deal of work has been done. The geological survey, of course, does not undertake actual drilling operations, unless there is an immediate prospect of commercial development. It is carrying out a magnetic survey at the moment on a regional basis, as a preliminary to a general magnetic survey of the country and is hoping thereby to acquire information concerning minerals, which information, however, would not lead to commercial development unless followed up by drilling operations. In the Leinster coalfield area, a great deal of drilling has been done in the past few years and a number of new prospecting licences have been given to private concerns.
I want to make it clear that the Department is not going into the production of coal. I do not at all agree with Deputy Norton that the development of whatever coal resources are in the country can best be done by a State organisation. There are some private concerns engaged in coal production here. We, undoubtedly, would be prepared to facilitate them in extending their operations, particularly by exploration work, if that is what is required; but I am satisfied we will get far more useful results by allowing these private concerns to extend their activities than by carrying on coal production as a State enterprise. There is no comparison between our circumstances and those of Great Britain and the mere fact that nationalisation of the coal industry has taken place in Great Britain is no reason why we would get more coal or cheaper coal by nationalisation here.
The only coal mine for which the Department has a responsibility is that at Slieveardagh, where the workings are operated by Mianraí, Teoranta. I think it is very problematical whether it is desirable to leave Mianraí, Teoranta, with that responsibility. I should think that one lone, small State enterprise in the midst of a field full of private undertakings is not likely to be a satisfactory arrangement. I am quite satisfied that we have not got  vast coal resources. I think all the information obtained, not merely by the geological survey but from the records of people who worked coal mines in this country in the past, would seem to suggest that, while we have some deposits capable of satisfactory commercial working, there is little likelihood that there exists here vast resources of coal as yet undiscovered which could now be exploited to meet our needs.
Somebody referred to the fact that railwaymen are looking to Irish coal mines for the coal to keep the rail services going. Córas Iompair Éireann would use twice as much coal in the year as all the Irish coal mines could produce and only about one-third of the coal produced in Irish mines can be used in the railway engines in operation here. An expansion of coal production has taken place during the war, though it has been impeded by a lack of skilled workers. I think there is a complete misapprehension in Deputy Coogan's mind as to the labour problems of coal production. Only a proportion of the men employed in a coal mine work at the coal face, but obviously the number of men at the coal face determines the volume of production and the number who can usefully be employed around the coal mine.
Mr. Hughes: There is the housing problem there.
Mr. Lemass: The housing problem could, perhaps, be overcome by various methods, but there is undoubtedly a shortage of skilled coal-face workers and they cannot be trained in any short period. While conditions in Irish mines are much safer than in English mines, despite the fact that they are working narrower seams, mainly by reason of the complete absence of coaldamp, the regulations which prohibit the employment of men at the coal-face unless they have a certain minimum experience underground are still maintained and are necessary in the interests of safety. We modified some of those restrictions, with the consent of the trade unions, during the war, but I think it would be futile to think we  could get any substantial increase in coal output by attempting to employ unskilled workers at that very highly skilled operation.
There is no provision in this Estimate for a subsidy for sugar. This Estimate relates only to items of expenditure that have to be incurred in this financial year. With regard to the price of sugar next year, after the sugar which has been purchased abroad is imported, I think I can say there is no likelihood that the price of domestic sugar will be increased. It is, however, a matter for consideration whether we would be justified in subsidising the price of sugar used for commercial purposes. If an arrangement could be found by which the imported dearer sugar could be confined to commercial users, releasing all the home-produced sugar for domestic use, that would be worth examining. However, no decision has been made upon the matter. There is as yet no definite information as to when the imported sugar will be available and there is even some element of doubt as to what its exact cost, landed in this country, will prove to be.
Mr. Hughes: Is it refined or raw?
Mr. Lemass: It is raw sugar. I think it will have to be used here as raw sugar. There would be certain practical difficulties in refining it but most manufacturers can use unrefined sugar just as easily as refined sugar.
Some other matters were referred to, but I do not want to deal with them now, as they will come before the Dáil again in a manner more suitable for discussion. In particular, I may mention the fact that legislation affecting the future of Mianraí, Teoranta, is in contemplation and will be produced during the year. The whole position of that body has been under examination and it is clear that some of its war-time activities can or must now be wound up. Its future is a matter upon which the Government will have definite proposals to make to the Dáil. In all these matters relating to mineral exploration, as Deputies understand, there is a very high speculative element. We can set aside a vast amount of money for mineral exploration work and have nothing to show when it is all gone. On the other hand,  even a comparatively inexpensive geophysical survey might reveal important commercial possibilities.
I feel that most Deputies, like myself, will not feel satisfied until we have carried out a proper exploration of our mineral deposits by drilling. Only in that way can we be satisfied once and for all. So long as there is an element of doubt, we feel we may be missing something of importance. That is why the Government will have definite proposals for a specific programme of mineral exploration which it will bring to the Dáil in due course for consideration.
Mr. Norton: Would the Minister like to say something about the 1941 Act?
Mr. Lemass: One is not entitled to discuss legislation on an Estimate.
An Ceann Comhairle: It would be out of order.
Mr. Hughes: What about the subsidy for bread?
Mr. Lemass: I could not deal with the individual case to which the Deputy refers. There is a number of difficulties about the bread subsidy. We only pay a subsidy on batch bread where it is possible for the baker to show that a specific quantity of batch bread has been sold by him. Most of the difficulties that arose in that regard resulted from the fact that most bakers could only show from their accounts the quantity of batch bread which they produced. They could not show the quantity sold and, of course, the subsidy is only payable on the bread sold. In the particular case to which the Deputy referred, if my recollection is correct, the problem there arose from the fact that a new owner purchased the bakery without really buying the goodwill of the bakery. He, therefore, would have to be regarded as a new entrant into the business, and as a new entrant he would not be entitled to the subsidy because we are not paying a batch bread subsidy to people who entered the business after the subsidy was inaugurated.
Vote put and agreed to.
Mr. Lemass: I move:
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £10 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for Transport and Meteorological Services.
There are a number of sub-heads to this Vote under which additional moneys are required. The first relates to payments in respect of steamer services. The Dáil will remember that we entered into an agreement with the Galway Bay Steamship Company for the continuation of the Aran Island steamer service. As part of the agreement, we undertook to defray out of voted moneys the entire cost of overhauling the steamer used on that service. In fact, when the steamer was taken into the dockyard it was found that far more extensive repairs were required than had been originally assumed. The full cost of the repair to the steamer is not yet known, but it is considered that it will not exceed £8,400.
Under the next sub-head—salaries, wages and allowances—the increase is mainly due to increases in remuneration, to some extra staff and for the payment of a certain amount of overtime. Increased expenditure has been incurred under sub-head B (2)—travelling expenses—mainly because a number of international technical conferences were held during the year in connection with the development of air services, conferences which it was necessary for the officers of the Department to attend for the purpose of ensuring that the navigational and other aids to air services to be installed here would be in accordance with international standards and completely suitable for their purpose.
The additional expenditure incurred in connection with construction works relates to the erection of meteorological observation stations at Midleton and Ballygarvan, in the County Cork. In the main Estimate, a token sum of £10 was provided to cover possible expenditure in the course of the year in connection with the establishment of an airport at Cork. The only expenditure incurred was the erection of these observation  stations at two possible sites for the purpose of getting the weather data necessary for a decision as to which, if either, is suitable for the purpose.
The increases in respect of maintenance work are mainly due to increases in wages. The increase under sub-head B (11) was due to the fact that the consumption of electricity was higher than had been assumed, and because certain payments fell to be made in connection with dredging at Shannon Airport.
The main item in this Supplementary Estimate is under Sub-head C—Subsidy in respect of Air Services. Because of the non-delivery of aircraft, for which crews have been recruited and trained, the company's operations show a bigger deficit than had been anticipated. As the House is aware from Press announcements, the company entered into an arrangement to procure a number of Viking aircraft but, prior to the delivery of the aircraft to the company, the British Ministry of Civil Aviation decided that these aircraft should be grounded in order to have certain defects in their construction remedied. In consequence, it will be some months yet before there is any prospect of the aircraft being delivered. A similar situation arises in connection with Constellation aircraft on order. In the meantime crews and staff for the operation of the aircraft which had been recruited by the company are being retained in the services of the company.
The increase which has arisen in the case of the Dublin airport is mainly due to increases in wages and, to some extent, to an increase in employment. The increased expenditure under the head of international organisations arises in respect of five separate items. The first is an increased contribution to the International Meteorological Organisation, and the second an increased contribution to the Provisional International Civil Aviation Organisation, due to an expansion of the organisation's budget and a revision in the basis of State contributions which increases the amount payable by us. Another item relates to certain payments in respect of the North Atlantic Regional Air  Conference, held in Dublin, which it was thought would have been made in the previous financial year but which did not, in fact, fall to be made until this financial year. There were also certain expenses incurred in connection with the meeting held in Dublin in October last of the International Commission for Air Navigation. The remaining item of additional expenditure is connected with the election of this country to the Council of the Provisional International Civil Aviation Organisation which means the establishment of a permanent office and staff for the Irish member of the Interim Council at Montreal.
Vote put and agreed to.
Minister for Posts and Telegraphs (Mr. Little): I move:
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £377,815 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the Salaries and Expenses of the Office of the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs (45 and 46 Vict., c. 74; 8 Edw. 7, c. 48; 1 and 2 Geo. 5, c. 26; the Telegraph Acts, 1863 to 1928; No. 14 of 1940 (secs. 30 and 31); No. 14 of 1942 (sec. 23), etc.), and of certain other Services administered by that Office.
The Estimate for the Department of Posts and Telegraphs, already approved by the Dáil for the financial year ending 31st March, 1947, amounted to £3,549,320. Due to causes which could not have been anticipated this provision will be insufficient, and an additional sum of £377,815 will be required to cover essential expenditure up to the end of the financial year. The actual excess over the approved Estimate amounts to £392,400, but there is an off-setting saving of £14,585 representing increased Appropriations-in-Aid, leaving the net excess at £377,815.
Of the excess, £225,070 is required under sub-heads A (1), (2), (3) and (4), and of this sum £189,030 is in respect of increases in remuneration resulting from the recent decision to consolidate the pay of civil servants as  from 1st November, 1946. The balance of the additional provision under these sub-heads is due to increased staff and extra duty necessitated by general expansion of business and to the improvements in the remuneration of sub-postmasters, effective also from 1st November, 1946, of which the Dáil had already been informed. The amount required for sub-postmasters to the end of the financial year, namely, for five months, is £31,000.
The causes of other increases are, broadly, as follows:—Sub-head D, increase £3,550, due to the purchase of premises at Distillery Road, Dublin, for use as a garage for engineering branch vehicles. Sub-head E (1) and (5), increase £55,525, due mainly to payments to Córas Iompair Éireann in respect of increased mail traffic, and to new air mail services, including daily services to U.S.A. and Canada. Sub-head G (2), increase £4,600, the result mainly of contracts for uniform clothing, due for delivery in 1945-46, not having been completed until 1946-47, and of replenishment of stocks as the supply position permitted. Sub-head I (1), increase £27,655, due mainly to increased staff remuneration on consolidation and to provision for abnormal storm repairs. Sub-head K, increase £54,000, due to increased purchases of engineering stores required for an expanding programme of work, delivery of which was not expected in the current financial year, and to abnormal storm repairs. Sub-head N (1), increase £22,000 due to an unanticipated increase in the number of retirements. The increase in the receipts under sub-head T, Appropriations-in-Aid, £14,585, is attributable, mainly, to additional receipts from Savings Bank funds and receipts for agency services performed on behalf of other administrations. I anticipate that our main Estimate will be introduced very soon when there will be plenty of opportunities to discuss matters.
Mr. Norton: The Minister would be lonely, apparently, if somebody did not raise something on this Estimate. I only want to raise one matter, and that is the question of the provision for stores under sub-head G (2). I notice  that there is provision for an additional expenditure of £4,600 and, so far as it means the provision of a greater quantity of uniform clothing, I welcome it, because during the last seven years a very serious situation has existed from time to time in respect of uniform clothing and, particularly, in respect of protective clothing. I know that the matter is not wholly within the control of the Post Office Department, that it has to rely on imported supplies, and that these have not come with the regularity that was previously the case. But a very serious situation has developed in respect of protective clothing. The Minister knows the kind of weather we always experience here in winter; he knows, in particular, the kind of exceptionally severe weather we have experienced for the past three or four months.
When you remember that postmen may be required to walk as much as 18 miles in rural areas every day in snow and rain and may be required to cycle 26 or 28 miles for six days of the week in snow and rain, you get some appreciation of the necessity for protecting them against the inclement weather in which they have to perform their duties. It is well known, I think, to the Post Office Department that the material which is being used in protective clothing is of very inferior quality. The Post Office tries to get that inferior material to last twice as long as it previously required material to last. But, of course, actual experience has shown how impossible it is for the Post Office to expect sub-normal material to last as long as normal material and that requirement has broken down.
The appeal I want to make to the Minister is this: We have been passing through very bad weather. Stocks of protective clothing have not been sufficient to provide adequate protection for those who are compelled to work out of doors in all kinds of weather. A postman cannot just say: “The weather is bad; there has been a heavy fall of snow and I will not go out today; I will work indoors.” The postmen have to perform their outdoor duties in all kinds of weather. I appeal to the Minister to take every step available to him to provide protective clothing in every case in which it is certified  that the present protective clothing is unserviceable. The Minister may tell me that the Post Office endeavour to do that. They say they do. But, from time to time, they say: “We have no protective clothing in stock”, and this is said at a time when the papers are full of advertisements offering Army protective clothing at certain prices. If the Department itself cannot provide protective clothing from its own stocks, may I suggest to the Minister that he should endeavour to secure some of the waterproof protective clothing that is available for sale in shops and through private firms and to utilise that, at all events, to supplement the inadequate stocks which are at present held by the Post Office.
I do not say that that is a very satisfactory arrangement. I do not pretend it is an ideal arrangement. But it is much better than an arrangement whereby an officer is required to walk 18 miles in wet and snowy weather without adequate protection against the elements. I should like at all events, if the Minister feels that his Department is not able to provide a regular supply of protective clothing from their own stocks of material, that favourable consideration will be given to the question of purchasing auxiliary stocks through private firms so that these may be available to protect outdoor officers against the elements which they are compelled to withstand in present circumstances. Even from a Departmental point of view, the provision of proper protective clothing is a good investment, because if the Department, by reason of providing inferior protective clothing or unserviceable clothing, permits an officer to contract a cold or rheumatism or anything else, in the long run his sick leave costs the Post Office probably much more than the provision of proper protective clothing would cost.
I know that the general question of providing protective clothing in existing circumstances is difficult because of the fact that the Department has to rely to a considerable extent on imported material. No doubt it will endeavour to secure supplies of that  material from normal sources of supply, but I should like the Minister to examine the question of supplementing the stocks by purchases from private firms until such time as the Department can get back to a position in which it can supply protective clothing from its own stocks.
Mr. Little: I shall certainly take notice of what the Deputy has said. As a matter of fact, already we have been discussing the possibility of looking about us because, as he said, it is extremely difficult to get a really satisfactory type of protective clothing at present owing to the fact that it has to be imported and that there is a shortage. We certainly will examine all the possibilities of these various sources which we see advertised. If anything can be done in that matter, it will be done, because we appreciate very much the work done by our postmen at the present time. I cannot but admire the way in which, in spite of the inclemency of the weather, they have been able to carry on with such regularity.
Another matter which I should like to mention, because I think the public would be interested in it, is the question of putting all trunk lines underground. It is the policy of the Department as part of the scheme of large-scale telephone development to place the main net-work of telephone trunk circuits underground in cables. This will have, incidentally, the advantage of rendering them more or less immune from damage in storms such as occurred lately, although the possibility of cable faults occurring which would seriously dislocate the service for a short time will remain.
The policy of placing trunk circuits in underground cables instead of running them overhead has not been decided upon because of liability of overhead wires to storm damage. Underground cabling is so very expensive—a cable from Dublin to Cork would, for example, cost close on £1,000,000—that it would not be warranted on this score alone. But the number of wires that can be carried on a pole route is, of course, limited, and in order to cater for the large expansion of telephone traffic which we  expect to develop, trunk cables which can provide an almost unlimited number of circuits will be laid. Immunity from storm damage is an incidental, though valuable, benefit which will flow from the decision to place trunk circuits underground.
The public and Deputies will, I am sure, wish to know something regarding the extent of the damage caused to telephone and telegraph services by the blizzard on 25th February. We have been particularly unfortunate this year, at a time when our staff were making their maximum effort to prepare for a programme of rapid expansion of the telephone service, in that two of the severest snowstorms of our experience have followed close on each other. The storm of 2nd February caused severe and extensive damage to trunk lines throughout the country as well as putting 5,000 subscribers' lines out of order in Dublin. By stopping all new construction work, and by an all-out effort under exceptionally bad conditions, our engineering staff were able to restore all the trunk lines and 4,000 subscribers' lines by the 25th February when the further blizzard occurred. Now their work has to a very large extent been undone and it has been necessary to start all over again. Another 1,000 subscribers' lines in Dublin have been affected and the whole trunk system has been disrupted. The damage has been even greater than that caused by the storm of 2nd February, being particularly severe south of Port Laoighise, west and north-west of Mullingar and south of Wicklow. The engineering staff have succeeded in reestablishing communication with almost all main centres but in most cases direct circuits are not yet available and resort must be had to very circuitous routing. No direct circuits are available from Dublin to Arklow, Ballina, Cavan, Claremorris, Cork, Clonmel, Ennis, Enniscorthy, Limerick, Longford, Monaghan, Roscrea, Thurles, Tipperary, Tralee, Waterford or Wexford as well as to other less important communications centres. The repair work is being pressed ahead with the utmost possible speed but is severely hampered by difficulties of transport, owing to lack of trains and the impassable state of many roads.
 I should like to take this opportunity of paying tribute to the truly excellent work done by the engineering staff in minimising the effect of the snowstorms. They have been working, as Deputies know, under conditions of exceptional difficulty and hardship and have not hesitated to continue in their efforts to restore lines even when weather conditions were such that no one could have complained had they desisted. They are deserving of the best thanks of the Department and the community for their exceptionally zealous and meritorious service.
Mr. Norton: May I put one suggestion to the Minister? He has promised to look into the question of securing stocks of waterproof garments. Will he endeavour to do that whilst we have the present inclement weather?
Mr. Little: Yes.
Mr. Norton: Instead of leaving the matter to remain over until the spring. I understand it is impossible to supply waterproof pull-up leggings but they are available in most shops in town. Why not get them there and issue them?
Mr. Little: I have already put through a request to that effect and will try to follow it up. As the Deputy knows, I cannot promise anything, but we will do our best.
Mr. Norton: The trouble is that you promise everything and do not do anything.
Mr. Little: Do not be too ungrateful. We did a lot more than you expected us to do.
Vote put and agreed to.
Minister for Finance (Mr. Aiken): I move:—
Go ndeontar suim breise nach mó ná £19,230 chun íoctha an oíread ná fuil soláthar eile déanta dhóibh de na Muirir a thiocfas chun bheith iníoctha i rith na bliana dar críoch an 31ú Márta, 1947, chun Méaduithe ar Thuarastal Stát-Sheirbhíseach.
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £19,230 be granted to meet such of the Charges as have not been  otherwise provided for, which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for Increases in Remuneration of Civil Servants.
This Estimate in this form is to substitute for 14 Supplementary Estimates that would have been necessary to deal with this matter of increases in remuneration of civil servants. Apart from the Departments mentioned on the face of this Estimate, increases have been either got out of savings on the other Votes or were included in Supplementary Estimates that have already been laid before the House.
Vote put and agreed to.
Mr. Aiken: I move:
Go ndeontar suim breise nach mó  ná £912 chun ioctha an Mhuirir a thiocfas chun bheith iníoctha i rith na bliana dar crioch an 31ú Márta, 1947, chun Airleacain Ilghnéitheacha áirithe a aisíoc leis an gCiste Teagmhais.
That a supplementary sum not exceeding £912 be granted to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending 31st March, 1947, for the repayment to the Contingency Fund of certain Miscellaneous Advances.
This is the usual Estimate to repay to the Contingency Fund sums that were advanced during the year.
Vote put and agreed to.
Votes, 21, 23, 29, 32, 33, 35, 43, 53, 55, 56, 59, 61, 76, and 77 reported and agreed to.
The Dáil adjourned at 1.50 p.m. until 3 o'clock on Tuesday, 11th March, 1947.