HC Deb 12 April 1883 vol 278 cc70-1

asked the Eight honour-able the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Member for Carlow Borough, whether, of the 25 Members of the Town Council of the City of Dublin who voted in favour of the Petition to Parliament against the Sunday Closing of Public Houses, which he presented on Tuesday, a majority of that number were actually engaged in the whiskey trade; whether, during the debate that took place on the occasion of the Petition being adopted, his Lordship's attention was called to the Law, That no member of the Council having a pecuniary interest in any matter brought before he Council should vote thereon; if the town clerk advised that, in his opinion, the votes of those engaged in the spirit trade on a matter closely affecting their interests came within the section of the Act which was quoted; whether his Lordship, acting on the advice of the town clerk, warned the Members affected that, although their votes would be recorded, they voted at their peril; and, whether, had the votes of the Town Councillors interested in the spirit trade not been recorded, the majority would have been against the Petition?


Sir, I beg to say, in answer to the first paragraph of the Question, that it is not the case that the majority of the 25 members of the Town Council who voted in favour of a Petition to Parliament against Sunday Closing were actually engaged in the trade referred to. Only 10 out of the 25 who voted were actually engaged in the trade, and took part in the debate. During the debate, my attention was called to the fact that some members had a pecuniary interest in the matter brought before the Council, and had not a right to vote thereon. The Town Clerk did not advise me that these votes could not be taken; but, on my own motion, I read the section of the Act of Parliament relating to the question, and I left it to the members themselves to act on their responsibility, and abide by the consequences. It is not correct to say that the majority of the Council in the last division were directly engaged in the whiskey trade. Deducting the members engaged in the trade, the numbers for and against were even, 13 against 13.