MR. PATRICK O'BRIEN
On behalf of the hon. Member for East Cavan, I beg 89 to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware of the great delay in fixing fair rents caused by the inability of farmers to supply the Sub Commissioners with certificates of valuation for standard years, in cases where holdings have been divided or consolidated holdings, with landlord's consent, have been separated since fixing last judicial rent; whether he is aware that the Irish Land Laws do not require the production of any such certificates; and if inquiry will be made with the view of providing some way of preventing the block at present existing in fixing fair rents in such cases.
§ MR. G. W. BALFOUR
Having regard to the provisions of the Local Government Act, 1898, and particularly of Section 55, a fair rent cannot be fixed unless the court is furnished with a certificate of the rateable valuation of the holding for the standard financial year, setting forth separately the valuation of the agricultural land and other hereditaments respectively comprised therein. In cases where holdings have been sub-divided or consolidated, even with the consent of the landlord, as indicated in the question, and when the provisions of the Valuation Acts have not been complied with, and the valuations of sub-divided or consolidated holdings have not been revised, the certificate referred to cannot be issued until steps have been taken under Statute 17 Vic, cap. 8, as altered by the Local Government (Adaptation of Irish Enactments) Order, 1899, to have the valuation revised at the next annual revision. When the Act of last year came into force the Land Commissioners issued a Memorandum to applicants to have fair rents fixed, in which they were informed that when circumstances such as those with which the question deals existed the Commissioners would be unable to fix a rent until steps had been taken by the applicant to have the tenement valuation revised.