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Dublin: 12 °C Tuesday 4 August, 2020
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Oireachtas agenda: Budget 2013, water charges and cyber-bullying

The Dáil completes its consideration of the Finance Bill today, while the Seanad finalises the new water charges scheme.

Image: Joe Shlabotnik via Flickr

WHAT ARE OUR politicians doing in the halls of Leinster House?

TheJournal.ie lets you know with our guide to what’s coming up to the Dáil, Seanad and various Oireachtas committees today.

DÁIL

The live televisual spectacle of Leaders’ Questions kicks off at 10:30am, with 30 minutes devoted to agreeing the day’s agenda afterwards.

There are two Bills to be debated with the rest of the day:

  • The Finance Bill 2013, which will be given its final once-over before being sent to the Seanad – this gives legal effect to the tax changes of the Budget; and
  • The Industrial Development (Science Foundation Ireland) (Amendment) Bill 2012, which widens the remit of Science Foundation Ireland so that it can fund projects in all 32 counties, and can fund advanced research as well as more basic work.

Debate on these Bills is interrupted for lunch (1:30pm); Questions to the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltachtat 2:30pm, and discussion of four topical issues at 3:45pm. The legislative work resumes at 4:33pm.

At 7:30pm debate resumes on Sinn Féin’s motion criticising the government’s progress on economic growth, and calling for a new 32-county strategy to create new inward investment.

The day’s Dáil business can all be viewed here.

SEANAD

The Seanad’s day also begins at 10:30am, with 75 minutes of debate on the day’s agenda. There’s a break from then until 1pm, when it holds the Oireachtas’ final debate on the legislation behind the new system of water charges – rubber-stamping changes made by the Dáil.

At 5:30pm the Labour senators will introduce their Employment Equality (Amendment)(No.2) Bill 2013 - which they hope will end recruitment discrimination against gay teachers and medical workers in institutions with a religious ethos. A vote probably won’t be needed, but will be held at 7:30pm if so.

The day’s Seanad business can all be viewed here.

COMMITTEES

It’s a relatively quiet day, with only three public committee meetings:

  • The Transport and Communications committee resumes its discussion on social media abuse at 9:30am, this time hearing from the National Anti-Bullying Coalition. More regular service is resumed afterwards, when members are briefed on a forthcoming meeting of EUFORES – a European group of parliamentarians who support a sustainable energy future. (Watch here.)
  • The Education and Social Protection committee meets at 1pm when it hears from the online-only Hibernia College to discuss the delivery of college education online, and from Schoolbag.ie to hear about how technology can improve interaction between schools and parents. (Watch here.)
  • At 2pm the Justice, Defence and Equality committee meets the National Federation of Retail Newsagents to discuss the black market for certain products, and how it can be tackled. (Watch here.)

Explainer: How does a Bill become a law?

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About the author:

Gavan Reilly

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