§ MR. POWER (Waterford, E.)
To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that the Estates Commissioners state that they are bound by a statutory provision to redeem an existing annuity in respect of purchased land acquired by them before they can make a further advance for any purpose in connection with the same; whether this entails loss 1201 while land stock has to be issued at a considerable discount; what amount is required to redeem an annuity of £32 10s. created under the Land Act of 1903; and whether, to facilitate the purchase of land for evicted tenants and for other purposes where no untenanted lands are available, the law will be amended on this point.
(Answered by Mr. Bryce.) I am informed that it was decided by Mr. Justice Meredith that, having regard to the provisions of Section 9 (4) of the Purchase Act of 1891, an advance cannot be made under the Land Purchase Acts for the purchase of any holding which is already charged with an annuity in respect of an advance under the Acts. It is presumed that this is the provision to which the hon. Member refers. An advance raised by means of land stock cannot legally be made to redeem the existing annuity, and the loss referred to in the Question is not, therefore, incurred. A holding purchased under the former Purchase Acts may, however, be transferred subject to the existing annuity. An annuity of £32 10s. represents an advance under the Act of 1903 for £1,000. That annuity, if created in January, 1904, could now be redeemed for £985.