§ MR. HEALY
asked the First Lord of the Treasury, If his attention has been called to the facts disclosed in the Return respecting advances to tenants under Section thirty-one of the Land Act, from which it appears that, out of 662 a total of 347 applications, not a single penny has been granted by the Irish Board of Works; and, whether, in view of this, the Government will take into renewed consideration the representations made last year by Irish Members as to the restrictions insisted on by the Treasury, and the continuance of Colonel McKerlie at the head of the Board of Works?
This is a very difficult Question indeed, and the subject to which it relates is certainly the most difficult of those which pertain to the Executive portion of the Land Act. The facts are not exactly as the hon. Member appears to suppose, because matters have advanced a little further since the date to which the Return extends. At present, 36 of those loans have been sanctioned by the Treasury, and the sum authorized to be advanced is over £8,200. It would be premature if I were to express an opinion whether the clause can operate with tolerable freedom or not under the present regulations; but, of course, it is to be expected that the House will consider that matter, and that the subject will have to receive attention, though I cannot say whether it would be presented to Parliament separately or dealt with in connection with other important financial questions requiring the consideration of the Government.
I think that would be very proper. Perhaps the end of June would be a convenient opportunity.