§ MR. P. J. O'BRIEN (Tipperary, N.)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he has received numerous resolutions from Poor Law Boards and other representative bodies in Ireland (in the interest of the Irish cattle dealers), in condemnation of the proposed new truck rate for the carriage of live stock on Irish, railways—namely, a charge for the 14-foot cattle wagon in use in Ireland at the same rate as charged for the 18-foot waggon used on the English lines; and whether the Board of Trade has given its favourable consideration to a proposal on the part of the Irish railway companies for this rate; and, if so, whether, in deference to puplic opinion in Ireland on the subject, and in consideration of the fact, as alleged, that such rate would be equivalent to a tax on Irish enterprise, in connection with her cattle trade, he will give the matter his consideration, with a view to having the proposed schedule of rates amended?
§ SIR M. HICKS BEACH
I have received several resolutions from Boards of Guardians and other bodies in Ireland with regard to the maximum rates for the carriage of live stock proposed in the schedule applicable to Irish railways, which are not, however, exactly as stated in-the question. The maximum rates proposed were settled after careful consideration of the present statutory powers of the Irish companies and of the rates actually charged at the present time. The schedules are at present under the consideration of a Joint Committee of the two Houses sitting upstairs, and any proposals for amendment contained in petitions presented on the subject will doubtless receive the careful 1456 consideration of that Committee. It will be my duty, as it was last year, to carry into effect any decision at which they may arrive.