§ MR. SETON-KARR (Lancashire, St. Helens)
I beg to ask the Vice-President of the Department of Agriculture for Ireland, as under the provisions of the; Agricultural and Technical Instruction (Ireland) Act, 1899, the entire powers, and duties of the Inspector of Irish Fisheries are placed ! under the control of the Department created by the said Act whether the Agricultural Council and the 1125 Agricultural Board have power to advise the Department on the various subjects, including fisheries; whether the said Council and Board are now fully constituted; and will, he explain why, although the Department had the power of appointing thirty-four members to the said Agricultural Council and four member to the said Agricultural Board, no representatives of the large fishery owners have been selected among the said members so appointed; and whether the Government will take any, and, if so, what steps to secure adequate representation of the large fisheries of Ireland on the Agricultural Board or other appropriate Department.
MR. G. W. BALFOUE (for Mr. PLUNKETT)
The reply to the first paragraph is in the affirmative, but the disposal of the sum of £10,000 a year assigned for the purposes of sea fisheries in the Act is under the full control of the Department, and does not require the consent of any other body. The Council and the Board are fully constituted. In selecting persons for appointment on both bodies the Department took into consideration the various public interests involved, and did not consider it their duty to provide, as the hon. Member's question appears to suggest, for the representation of private interests. I understand that amongst the representatives appointed are persons who were chosen with reference to fishery interests,
Is it not a fact that, while the fisheries are valued at, £600,000, the only two members appointed to represent it are one whose fishery interest is valued at £15 a year and another interested to the extent of £20 a year, while the rest of the industry is absolutely unrepresented?