HL Deb 02 March 1899 vol 67 cc1005-6

The following Notice stood on the Paper in the name of Viscount TEMPLETON▀×

To ask Her Majesty's Government—

  1. 1. Whether Patrick Markey purchased In 1889, for £180, a farm of 10a. 0r. 10p. held under the Earl of Gosford at the yearly rent of £9 4s. 8d., the poor law valuation being £9 10s.; and whether, in 1897, the Irish Land Commission on rehearing reduced the rent to £6 10s., although no improvements were claimed by the tenant or allowed for by the Court?
  2. 2. Whether Mr. Justice Bewley, in announcing this decision, laid it down as the law that a deduction should be made on account of what he described as "the occupation interest" of the 1006 tenant, although the two other members of the Court who had heard the case, one of whom, though a barrister, has no legal status as a member of the Court, and the other is a layman, dissented from the decision of the Judicial Commission, but concurred with him as to the amount of reduction?
  3. 3. Whether it has been recently decided by the Court of Appeal in Ireland in other cases that Mr. Justice Bewley's view of the law as decided in Markey's case was erroneous, and that any deductions for "occupation interest" is illegal, and having regard to the fact that Markey purchased the holding so recently for £180, and that it is assessed for income-tax under Schedules A. and B. at the annual value of £12 13s. 4d., has not the Land Commission acted in violation of the law in reducing the rent to £6 10s.?
  4. 4. Whether any, and what, steps are intended to be taken as to the illegal deductions that have been made by the Land Commission in the past, and to prevent such a possibility in the future?

VISCOUNT TEMPLETOWN

My Lords, the representative of Her Majesty's Government who would, in the ordinary course o*f things, answer this Question, has asked me to postpone it for a few days. With the permission, of the House, I desire to do so.

THE EARL or DENBIGH

My Lords, I ask the noble Viscount to postpone his Question owing to the difficulty of obtaining an answer from the Land Commission. I cannot help remarking, however, that a certain amount of surprise was expressed at the noble discount's third Question, and at the fact of his having apparently thought that the Executive could in any way express an opinion upon the judgment of the Land Court or of any other court.

Question, by leave, postponed.

House adjourned at forty-five minutes after Four o'clock, till To-morrow, half-past Ten o'clock.