§ MR. HALPIN (Clare, W.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether he can state what is the cause of the delay in the erection of the pier for the fishermen at Ballahaline, County Clare; whether the money has been long ago provided for this pier; and, if so, whether he will see that the work is at once gone on with in view of the necessity for providing proper accommodation for the fishermen to enable them to carry on their work.
§ MR. BIRRELL
This matter cannot be proceeded with until legislation has been passed extending the power of the county council to contribute to works of the nature in question. A Bill on the 619 subject was introduced this session, but it was found impracticable to proceed with it, and the question of introducing an amended measure is now under consideration. It cannot be said that the money has been provided, so long as the county council have no legal power to make the necessary contribution.
§ MR. HALPIN
May I ask whether it is a fact that in the 130 miles of the Clare coast there are twenty-two fishing hamlets with 226 canoes in which 675 men go to sea to make a living, and whether it is a fact that the Government have not up to this erected even one pier for the protection of those hardworking toilers of the sea?
§ MR. JOHN REDMOND
Can the right hem. Gentleman say what is the cause of the delay in the introduction of the second Bill, the first having been withdrawn? Is it not yet drafted?
MR, JOHN REDMOND
And was not the cause of the withdrawal a quarrel between two Irish Departments; and is that quarrel to be allowed to defeat a second Bill?
§ MR. BIRRELL
The cause of the defeat of the last Bill was a difference of opinion between two Departments. The battle is still raging, and I hope it will soon be over.
§ MR. WILLIAM REDMOND
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that some years ago it was admitted that this pier could be built for the small sum of £1,100; that all the money has been provided with the exception of the portion to be given by the county council, which cannot be given until this Bill has been passed; might not the work be commenced with the money in hand and the county council contribution be given afterwards? It is very hard to keep these poor fishermen out of the pier.