Seanad Éireann - Volume 102 - 11 October, 1983

Order of Business.

Professor Dooge: It is proposed that all of our time today should be devoted to the discussion of item No. 2 which is the motion on the Action Plan for Irish published by Bord na Gaeilge. I am proposing this not only because of the importance of the question itself but because this is an all-party motion. We should acknowledge this and perhaps encourage such all-party motions to be discussed here. For these two reasons also I propose that we dispense with the usual limitation on the debate itself, that it would not be limited to three hours, and in regard to the length of individual speeches, while I do not want to encourage anyone towards verbosity in either language on this occasion, I think it would be appropriate if these restrictions did not apply. I might say that it is proposed to meet next Tuesday in order to [2] take No. 1, and to take a Private Members' Motion,

Mr. Lanigan: It worries me a little bit that we are meeting here today and we were given a provisional order of business which included the Tourist Traffic Bill. I am delighted that we are today to take item No. 2. It is a very important motion and I am delighted that, possibly because we do not have the Tourist Traffic Bill, we will be able to give it adequate time. Nevertheless it worries me a little bit that the Minister involved in the Tourist Traffic Bill could not be available today and that next Tuesday is the day ordered for the next business. This would seem to me to be a change from our normal procedure. I would have expected that next Wednesday would be the next sitting day in normal circumstances. I would ask the Leader of the House if possible that we meet next [3] Wednesday because it would appear that it would be more suitable to most Members of the House if we have not enough business to stay here for three days. I suggest that, if the Government can order business here in any one week that needs three days, we come up Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdayu, but if not, I think Wednesday would be a more suitable day than Tuesday.

Mr. W. Ryan: If the motion is not completed by 8 o'clock tonight do we sit tomorrow or adjourn until next Tuesday or Wednesday, as the case may be?

Professor Dooge: I am in the hands of the House over this. I would have thought that if we were very close to conclusion at 8.30 we might sit an hour later so as to finish. If there seems to be a few hours left of the debate I think it might be more appropriate to meet at 10.30 tomorrow but if we seem to be only at half time, then I think it would be appropriate to adjourn until next week. Perhaps we could see what the position is when we take our normal break from 6 o'clock to 7 o'clock, and agree accordingly.

In regard to the question of the day on which we meet next week in order to take the Tourist Traffic Bill, I can assure the Leader of the Opposition that in proposing Tuesday I sought not the convenience of the Minister but the convenience of the Seanad. I thought it might be useful if we could sit another day untrammelled by the rival publicity of Dáil Éireann, which will meet on Wednesday week. Again I think this is a matter that could be discussed by the Whips and an agreement reached as to whether we sit on Tuesday or Wednesday.

Order of Business agreed to.