§ MR. PARNELL (Cork City)
asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether, having regard to the fact that the Returns of Judicial Rents fixed in Ireland are arranged according to counties, and by years ending in August, whereas in the order of the Land Commission varying judicial rents according to the Act of 1887 the areas chosen are Poor Law Unions, and the years commence with the 1st of January and end with the 31st of December, and that consequently, it is impossible to ascertain what the precise effect of the Rent varying Clause of the Land Act of 1887 has been, he will grant the Return standing in the name of the hon. Member for North Meath (Mr. Mahony) for Friday the 4th of May?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY (Mr. A. J. BALFOUR) (Manchester, E.)
The Land Commissioners inform me that the books of rents fixed by the Land Commission and Civil Bill Courts, as also the books in which originating declarations and agreements are entered, are kept according to counties, not Poor Law Unions. To prepare the Return asked for would, therefore, in- 1209 volve an inspection of each one of 94,469 agreements, and the division of the entire 194,132 judicial rents into Poor Law Unions, and subsequently making schedules, totals, and percentage calculations. They state that this could only be done by largely augmenting their staff for five or six months, entailing considerable expense, and causing a serious interruption to their regular business. In these circumstances, the Government cannot undertake to grant the Return in question.