§ CAPTAIN DONELAN (Cork, E.)
On behalf of the hon. Member for South Fermanagh (Mr. J. JORDAN), I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, if he has received a petition from a number of farmers in the county Fermanagh, asking either for some abatement of the tax in connection with the Lough Erne Drainage or for an extension of time in which to pay their instalments; and, will he favourably consider their request?
§ MR. HANBURY
My right hon. Friend has asked me to answer this Question. I understand that both the period of repayment and the rate of interest fixed for this loan are already exceptionally favourable. The period is 49 years, instead of the usual term of 22 or 35, and the interest is 3⅛ per cent. instead of the usual rate of 3½ per cent. The reasons for which a further reduction is demanded are the failure of the flax crop and the low prices for cattle and farm produce. But I am afraid that these reasons are not confined to the neighbourhood of Lough Erne, but are more or less common to all the three kingdoms.