HC Deb 01 May 1883 vol 278 c1571

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. Whether, in view of the Poor Relief (Ireland) Bill disclosing the inability of certain Unions in Ireland to provide necessary funds for the relief of the destitute poor in such Unions, thus exhibiting that the present areas of Unions, unless amalgamated or otherwise re-cast, are inadequate as bases of Poor Law taxation, ho will persevere in his intention to ask leave to introduce a Union Bating Bill, especially as the Boards of Guardians of the Unions, numbering 163, throughout Ireland, are opposed to such principle of legislation?


The figures furnished by the Local Government Board for the purposes of the Poor Relief (Ireland) Bill indicate that in two, or perhaps three Unions, the pressure of taxation is unduly heavy in all the electoral divisions of the Union. But in a considerable number of distressed Unions the pressure is not general throughout the Union, but is local, and confined to certain electoral divisions. The conclusion -which I arrive at from these facts is that the argument in favour of Union rating is considerably strengthened by our experience of the present distress. I think that a proposal to amalgamate or otherwise re-cast the existing Unions would not be well received in Ireland, and I cannot see that any necessity for it has been made out. I shall, of course, pay great attention to any representations which the Boards of Guardians make upon the subject of the Union Rating Bill which I propose to introduce.