Thursday, 24 May 1984
Dáil Eireann Debate
The Taoiseach: It is proposed to take No. 10, (Votes 29 to 33) inclusive. By agreement, the debate on Votes 29 to 33, if not previously concluded, shall be brought to a conclusion not later than 5 p.m. and the Minister for Education shall be called on to conclude not later than 4.45 p.m. Also by agreement, if a division is challenged on any Estimate today, the taking of such division shall be postponed until 8.30 p.m. next Wednesday. Also by agreement, the Dáil shall meet at 10.30 tomorrow morning and shall adjourn not later than 4 p.m. and business shall be confined to Estimates for Public Services.
The Taoiseach: It could be quite some time, because proposals for changes in local authorities are at a very early stage of preparation and I do not think the legislation will be ready before, probably, early next year.
The Taoiseach: The Deputy is under a misapprehension. I said nothing at all about the quality of Dublin Corporation. I was asked by a journalist about our intentions in regard to local government reform and I said I could make no statement with regard to that but that looking at the structure of the local authorities in  Dublin it is fairly evident that any change in local government structures would be likely to involve changes affecting Dublin County because of the increased population there and the divergence of interests in different parts of the county. I said that the matter had not come before the Government and that obviously it would take some time before it would be brought to fruition. The Deputy was probably misled by the form in which my remarks were reported.
Mr. Molloy: With regard to the matter to which the Taoiseach referred, will he give an assurance that there will be discussions with the elected representatives and the staffs in the local authorities before a final decision is made and before the changes are put in the form of legislation? Can he give the House an assurance that the Government will have discussions and negotiations on this matter?
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