Tuesday, 12 July 2011
Dáil Éireann Debate
An Ceann Comhairle: Before coming to the Order of Business I propose to deal with a number of notices under Standing Order 32. I will call on Deputies in the order in which they submitted their notices to my office.
Deputy Willie O’Dea: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to discuss a matter of major national importance, namely, the very serious situation that has arisen following the recent High Court decision on the joint labour committee system, the impact of this ruling and the anxiety it has caused to thousands of vulnerable workers and their families throughout the country.
Deputy Eric Byrne: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to discuss the following matter of urgent national importance, namely, the High Court judgment of last Thursday, 7 July, which found the JLC agreements to be unconstitutional. This decision, unless urgently addressed by government, has the potential to cause considerable chaos and distress to working people because of the significant drop in income that will follow. Their families will face a noticeable lowering of their standard of living and it will cause considerable damage to the economy through loss of demand because of the significant loss of income that will ensue. I therefore request that this matter be dealt with urgently and that the Dáil is adjourned to do so.
Deputy Dessie Ellis: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil on a question of national importance, namely, to discuss the 10% increase in electricity prices being imposed by Bord Gais, its application to increase gas prices and the real and serious consequences this will have for many families, particularly the elderly who are already struggling to pay their household heating bills. This move will push many into arrears and cause an almost certain jump in the number of disconnections which could have tragic consequences in the months ahead if it is allowed to happen.
Deputy Niall Collins: Under the provisions of Standing Order 32 I seek the adjournment of Dáil Éireann to discuss an issue of major public importance requiring consideration, namely, the parliamentary and democratic process of holding an election for the office of President of Ireland given that this process was ignored by Fine Gael last weekend for party political advantage and that the process as set down——
Deputy Niall Collins: ——in the Presidential Elections Act 1993 clearly states that the Minister accountable to Dáil Éireann, not the Fine Gael director of elections, shall by order nominate the day and place for receipt of nominations, the date for the poll, appoint a returning officer——
An Ceann Comhairle: Deputy resume your seat please. I find it totally objectionable that you sent a notice to my office which read, “I wish to seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to raise a matter of national importance, namely, to discuss the holding of the forthcoming presidential election.”.
Deputy Michael Healy-Rae: I thank the Ceann Comhairle. I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to raise a matter of national importance, which is to seek an assurance from the Taoiseach and the Minister for Justice and Equality that the awful practices which occurred in England, namely, the hacking of telephones is not happening here——
Deputy Martin Ferris: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to raise a matter of national importance, namely, to discuss the 10% increase in electricity prices being imposed by Bord Gáis, the application by the same company to increase its gas prices and the fact these increases will further exacerbate the difficulties which a large number of households are experiencing in meeting their energy bills, and that this will push more people into arrears, increase the number of disconnections and lead to many people being unable to heat themselves properly over the colder months later in the year.
Deputy Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to address the following matter of national importance requiring urgent consideration, namely, the impending increase in electricity and gas prices and its negative impact on already struggling families and individuals as well as the overall economy.
Deputy Gerry Adams: A Cheann Comhairle, iarraim ort an Dáil a chur ar athló chun an cheist phráinneach seo a phlé, namely, the unacceptable proposal by Bord Gáis to increase electricity and gas bills for hundreds of thousands of consumers which, along with increased mortgage payments and stealth family taxes, will force more families into arrears and increase the number of people being disconnected from these services and entering deeper levels of debt.
Deputy Sandra McLellan: I seek the adjournment of the House under Standing Order 32 to discuss a matter of national importance, namely, the announcement that Bord Gáis intends to increase electricity prices by between 10% and 14% and the expectation that increases in gas prices will follow and add to the financial strain experienced by hundreds of thousands of already suffering families, especially among the most vulnerable in our society, which will undoubtedly give rise to circumstances in which many of these families will be forced into fuel poverty this winter and will struggle to heat their homes adequately at reasonable cost.
Deputy Peadar Tóibín: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to discuss the urgent matter of hikes in energy prices, both electricity and gas, and the negative financial burden these will place on families.
Deputy Peadar Tóibín: In the Navan area alone, between 200 and 300 families live in houses without proper double glazed windows or doors and most of them do not have proper insulation, a position replicated throughout the towns of County Meath. If the Government allows energy prices to increase and we have another extremely cold winter, families will be faced with fuel poverty and excruciating cold.
Deputy Seán Crowe: I seek the adjournment of the Dáil under Standing Order 32 to discuss a matter of major public importance, namely, the significant rise in gas and electricity prices which combined could result in the average consumer bill rise by up to €300 a year and which, if implemented, will place thousands more people at risk from fuel poverty.
Deputy Pearse Doherty: Iarraim ort, a Cheann Comhairle, an Teach a chur ar athló chun cheist phráinneach náisiúnta a phlé, is é sin, to discuss the human, social and economic impact of the announced increases in ECB interest rates and Bord Gáis energy prices, which will add an enormous burden per month on tens of thousands of households and further exacerbate the difficulties these families are experiencing in meeting their mortgage and energy bills, further hit consumer spending and further depress the economy, resulting in private sector job losses, and will also impact negatively on the banks as it will likely increase the cost of temporary liquidity provided by the ECB.
Deputy Aengus Ó Snodaigh: Ba mhaith liom an Dáil a chur ar athló chun déileáil leis an ghné ríthábhachtach seo ar chóir go mbeadh díospóireacht sa Teach air, the urgent need for the Government to take steps to prevent the flagged Bord Gáis electricity and gas price hikes and reduce the wages of top officials across the semi-State sector, considering that almost 630,000 people are at risk of poverty and unable to afford the flagged increases of 10% for electricity and between 20% and 30% for gas later this year, and the need for the Government to explain its failure to produce an effective fuel poverty strategy, including financial supports, considering fuel poverty accounts for up to 2,000 avoidable deaths each winter.
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