§ MR. CLANCY (Dublin, Co., N.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been drawn to the action of the Local Government Board in the matter of a petition presented to it relative to the refusal of the Navan Board of Guardians to provide additional half-acre allotments to certain cottages erected by that body under the Labourers Acts; whether the Local Government Board 426 have declined to hold an inquiry into the matters mentioned in that petition; and, if so, on what grounds has it so departed from the usual practice; and whether it is justified by law in declining to accede to the prayer of the petition?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
The petition referred to was brought under the notice of the guardians, who stated they were of opinion that the half-acre plots are amply sufficient for the requirements of the occupants of the cottages. The extent of the plot to be allotted to each cottage, subject to a maximum of one statute acre, is left, by the Labourers Acts, to the discretion of the sanitary authority, and the Local Government Board did not depart from the usual practice in declining to hold an inquiry, or otherwise to interfere with the discretion of the guardians. I may add that the guardians have already built 270 cottages, with half-acre plots, and that they propose to provide 42 more.