§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.
THE LORD PRIVY SEAL (THE EARL OF CRAWFORD)
My Lords, as the title indicates, this Bill deals with the provision of meals for school children in Ireland. Its object is quite simple and, I believe, not subject to contest. It is, briefly, to assimilate the law in Ireland to the law which already exists in this country with regard to feeding necessitous children in urban areas and county boroughs. This is all that the Bill does. From what I can learn the case for the Bill is well founded because in some of the larger towns of Ireland there is unquestionably distress, which, of course, reaches the children, and although something like twelve or fourteen urban authorities in Ireland have put the existing Act into force they have found it necessary to supplement the small sum raised from their rates by appeals to local charitable funds and well-disposed persons. The three subclauses of Clause 1 go no further than assimilating the law of Ireland to the existing law as regards urban districts in England. When the Bill is taken in Committee I shall have to ask your Lordships to make a very small and uncontroversial Amendment in the first line of Clause 1, to the effect that the local authority, instead of "may spend out of the rates," "may be authorised to spend out of the rates." I beg to move that the Bill be now read a second time
§ Moved, That the Bill be now read 2a.—(The Earl of Crawford.)
§ On Question, Bill read 2a.
THE EARL OF CRAWFORD
I will put the Committee stage of this Bill down for Monday, in the hope that if it proves uncontroversial I may get it through on that day. If discussion is required, I will postpone the Committee stage until a subsequent date.
Bill committed to a Committee of the Whole House on Monday next.