§ MR. SULLIVAN (Westmeath, S.)
To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that Mr. Cleary, the owner of Rockfield Farm, near Streamstown,county 1317 Westmeath, was willing to sell it to the Estates Commissioners for distribution amongst the poorer tenants, and that on communication with the Commissioners they replied that as the land was encumbered they could not buy it for distribution; and can he say if incumbrances debar purchase.
(Answered by Mr. Bryce.) I am informed by the Estates Commissioners that the farm in question was purchased by the occupying tenant under the Land Act of 1903. The Commissioners are, by Section 9 (4) of the Land Purchase Act of 1891. precluded from making advances for the purchase of land already purchased under the Land Purchase Acts and still subject to the payment of a land purchase annuity. The Commissioners, however, can purchase in such a case if the lands should be discharged of all encumbrances. They have, however, received no intimation that Mr. Cleary, the present owner of the farm referred to, is prepared to soil it freed from encumbrances, but if such an intimation should be made to them they will consider the question of purchase.