§ Order for Second Reading read.
§ MR. MAGUIRE moved the second reading of the Bill. There were 24,000 houses in Dublin, of which only 12,000 were supplied with water. The corporation had decided by a majority of two to one that it was their duty to furnish the people with a better and more wholesome supply of water, an article of which they had stood much in need for a great number of years.
§ SIR EDWARD GROGAN
said, there was a conflict of opinion in Dublin on this. The corporation had voted in favour of it, and he had received a petition from a number of most respectable firms requesting its postponement. Under these circumstances, he and his colleagues were ready to leave the matter to the decision of the House.
§ MR. WHITESIDE
said, the Bill was a gross job, to which the University of Dublin and many of the most respectable inhabitants were opposed. The Bill proposed to take the water supply from the river Liffey, but the inhabitants of Dublin did not wish to be poisoned. He now understood that the promoters gave up that scheme, and intended to enter into a contract with the canal companies for the supply of water. As the Bill had been framed with the view of taking the supply from the former source, he wished to know from the Chairman of Committees whether it was competent for the promoters to make so essential a change in the Bill. He suggested that the Bill should be postponed till the next Session.
§ MR. MASSEY
said, if the fact was as stated by the right hon. and learned Gentleman, it was so substantial a departure from the provisions that the Bill could not be allowed to proceed further. But as the Bill was one of great public importance, and deeply interesting to the people of Dublin, it would be a hard measure to postpone the scheme till next Session. He ventured, therefore, to suggest that the hon. Gentleman (Mr. Maguire) should ask leave to withdraw the Bill, and then ask leave to introduce another in which the intention of the promoters would be clearly expressed.
§ MR. M'CANN
, as a rate-payer of Dublin, supported the Bill, the great object of 2049 which was to provide for the poor of that city an abundant supply of good water.
§ MR. CARDWELL
said, he did not think the House should reject a measure of such importance on the ground stated. Moreover, he perceived that the Bill gave alternative power to take water either from the Liffey or from the Canal Company. It would be unfair to the Corporation of Dublin to reject their Bill so summarily, and he would therefore suggest that it should be postponed for a week, with a view to its amendment.
§ MR. BRIGHT
protested against the hon. Chairman of Committees being called on to express an opinion upon such a subject, a course which looked somewhat like dictatation to the House.
§ MR. MAGUIRE
said, he would withdraw his Motion for the Second Reading of the Bill until that day week.
§ Second Reading deferred till Thursday next.