HC Deb 23 March 1888 vol 324 cc176-7
DR. KENNY (Cork, S.)

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, What is the total amount of the income of the General Cattle Diseases Fund since the passing of the Contagious Diseases Animals Act in 1878, and what is the balance (if any) now to the credit of that Fund; what was the amount in the £1 assessed by the Local Government Board under the Contagious Diseases Animals Act, on the various Unions in Ireland, and the dates upon which said assessments were paid; and, whether, since, as directed by the recent Order in Council, steps are about being taken to stamp out pleuro-pneumonia in the Dublin District, by the compulsory slaughter of all cattle that have been in any way, however remotely, exposed to contagion, and as such compulsory slaughter will benefit the cattle trade not of Dublin alone, but of the entire country, it is the intention of the Irish Government to take advantage of section 83, sub-section 8, of the Act of 1878, to increase the poundage rate throughout the entire of Ireland to an extent under said sub-section sufficient to meet the claims for compensation arising out of the compulsory slaughter of healthy animals?

THE PARLIAMENTARY UNDER SECRETARY (Colonel KING-HARMAN)(who replied) said (Kent, Isle of Thanet)

The total amount received into the General Cattle Diseases Fund since the passing of the Act in 1878 has been £92,648 6s.d. The balance to the credit of the Fund on the 1st of the present month amounted to £9,168 10s. 4d. The assessments referred to have been on each occasion ¼d. in the £1. The dates on which they were made are as follow:—December 24, 1879, February 3, 1881, June 19, 1882, December 13, 1883, July 22, 1885, and May 27, 1887—averaging about £14,300 each levy. Pleuro-pneumonia has been practically confined to the Dublin District for a very considerable period; and there can be no doubt that the continued and continuous existence of the disease in the Dublin dairy-yards is due mainly to their insanitary condition and the manner in which the cattle kept in them are housed and fed, and to concealment of disease from the proper authorities. Under these circumstances, it would be manifestly unfair to tax the whole of Ireland to meet cases for compensation in the Dublin District on an equal scale with the ratepayers of the affected Unions. The Government, however, recognize that the recent Order, while absolutely necessary, may press severely on the rates of the Dublin Unions if their resources are at once called upon to meet all the cases for compensation; and they are considering a scheme by which assistance may be given to the districts mainly affected by the Order in the event of its provisions being promptly obeyed and carried out.