§ MR. P. J. POWER (Waterford, E.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he will have the register of voters entitled to vote in counties under the provisions of the Local Government Bill for Ireland arranged (instead of the present system now used in preparing the register for Parliamentary voters in counties) in the following order:—In counties and county divisions the townlands in each polling district of each Parliamentary division shall be placed in alphabetical order, and the names of the voters in each townland shall be placed in alphabetical order; in towns comprised in counties and county divisions the names of the streets in each town in each polling district shall be placed in alphabetical order, and the names of the voters in each street shall be placed in alphabetical order; and whether he will consult the clerks of the unions who now prepare the register of Parliamentary voters as to the advisability of the change?
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. GERALD BALFOUR,) Leeds, Central
On the registers of counties, voters are arranged alphabetically for each polling district in order to facilitate voting at the election, and this plan serves its purpose effectually. The proposal of the hon. Member would lead to loss of time at elections, townlands being so numerous, and the areas and populations in many instances being so small, and, moreover, in the event of a rated occupier's qualifying premises extending into several town-lands, inconvenience would be caused if he were doubtful in which he was registered. The new Registration Bill will substitute electoral divisions for polling districts, and will go as far towards meet- 828 ing the hon. Member's suggestion as it is proper and reasonable to do without sacrificing the convenience of the general public.