Wednesday, 1 June 1983
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. J. Bermingham: We are not really concerned with that. We are concerned with how much can be drawn. We want to be statutorily covered with the limits. It is principally the Department of the Environment which sets what is to be drawn. In 1982 local authority housing received £186 million from the Local Loans Fund. House purchase loans were £93.32 million. That included some supplementary grants. Gaeltacht housing was £.08 million. Are those the figures the Deputy wants?
Mr. Molloy: No. In the statement the Minister made to the House he said that local authority housing and sanitary services are the big elements, that they represent 98 per cent of the total this year. Could he tell the House what total he is referring to for 1983?
This shows a reduction on 1982 because loan facilities are now available from the Housing Finance Agency which has an approved budget of £50 million for 1983. Hence there is a substantial increase in the total amount of mortgage finance available.
In his budget statement the Minister for Finance informed us that £35 million extra was being raised through the Housing Finance Agency. In fact the total amount being increased for all finance for housing purposes in 1983 is only £3.86 million. How can the Minister state today that there is a substantial increase in the total amount of mortgage finance available, despite the fact that in my view, there is only a £3.86 million increase available to all loans. That does not tie in. I would like the Minister of State to explain what he means by his statement that there is a substantial increase in the total amount of mortgage finance available. I consider there is a reduction of £32 million.
Mr. J. Bermingham: There is a reduction in the amount necessary this year. It has not anything to do with the effect of this Bill. There is a reduction in the amount of the SDA loans but there is a corresponding availability of £50 million in the Housing Finance Agency. It is not my prerogative to say anything about limits, although the Deputy said it has that effect. I do not doubt the Deputy but I am not concerned with it under this Bill. It is a matter peculiar to the Department of the Environment. As I said I will not take a debate on the Estimate of the Department of the Environment under this Bill, which is only an enabling Bill to ensure that the capital will be available for the projects for which loans are approved.
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