Supporting Local Initiatives / Getting SMEs to do business online
Thursday, 23 April 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said: One of the most important areas of business opportunities is tourism. Senator Mooney regularly reminds us of that, but every time we look for changes to encourage tourism, there always seems to be someone saying that those changes do not suit...

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Call for a debate on Protection of the Environment
Tuesday, 21 April 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said: I would like to see time provided to debate the environment. I was reminded of this when the recent EU report indicated we have done quite well, comparatively, in regard to the cleanliness of our beaches. Only five of them did not reach the necessary level, and that is one of the top rankings in Europe. The reason beaches have done well is, in general terms, not as a result of Government or the local council. In most cases, it is the individuals living near the beaches who have done something...

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The country's transplant service
Thursday, 16 April 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said: Last week, one of the principal surgeons in the transplant unit at Beaumont Hospital resigned. This man, who is well known and highly respected and regarded, has given no explanation for his resignation from this important position...

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Seanad Reform / Nursing Home Charges
Wednesday, 15 April 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said: A couple of weeks ago, I asked what was happening with Seanad reform. The Leader told me the report would be published this week, which it was. It is time for us to have a debate on this because those of us who took an active part in arguing against the abolition of the Seanad made a number of proposals, many of which are being included in the proposals of the Government or, at least, those being put together by former Members of this House. The Government plans to introduce legislation to do something about this but I do not know whether this will happen immediately. If we are to have an election before April of next year, it will be interesting to see how quickly the Government can actually move on Seanad reform...

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Seanad Reform / Mortgate Interest Rates / A cleaner Ireland
Tuesday, 31 March 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said: Approximately 18 months ago, a referendum was held on this House, that is, on the reform of the Seanad. However, nothing happened afterwards and then, some time around the end of last year, the Taoiseach decided he would appoint a committee that should report by the end of March...

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Implications of a UK exit from the EU / Protecting our Sovereignty
Monday, 30 March 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said:  Yesterday the British Government announced it was going to dissolve parliament and hold an election next month. Although normally that would not attract a huge amount of our attention as we look on from a distance, the Conservative Party has stated it is its intention to hold a referendum on Britain leaving the European Union...

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Quinn Publishes Bill to Prevent Offenders from Profiting from Unlawful Killing of a Joint Tenant
Wednesday, 04 March 2015

Senator Feargal Quinn today March 4th 2015 published a Bill – the Succession (Amendment) Bill 2015 - to ensure that a joint tenant who murders another joint tenant cannot profit from his/her crime.

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Border Area / Sentencing Policy
Wednesday, 25 February 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said:  I am delighted about the attention being given in recent days to problems in the Border area, particularly the fuel smuggling that has gone on. I hope something comes of it. We have debated this before and have asked for debates on it before. It really is bandit country up there, both north and immediately south of the Border. It seems they can get away with it with impunity...

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UK leaving the EU? / Possible sale of Aer Lingus
Tuesday, 24 February 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said:  Will the Acting Leader give consideration to finding time in the near future for a debate on the possibility that Britain will leave the Common Market? Britain is planning to have an election and hold a referendum to leave the Common Market. While it may be nothing to do with us, it appears as though it has a lot to do with us. It is a threat to the economy...

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Absenteeism / Tackling Obseity
Thursday, 19 February 2015

During the Order of Business in the Seanad, I said:  According to a report published yesterday by the Small Firms Association, absenteeism is costing this country approximately €1 billion per annum. The report also states that when other costs such as replacing staff and a lack of productivity are taken into account, absenteeism is a huge cost to us. Yesterday, steps to address the sick note culture in Britain were announced. It is an initiative worthy of consideration by us...

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Appointment of Ombudsman for Children
Thursday, 12 February 2015

During a Seanad debate on the appointment of the Ombudsman for children, I said: welcome the Minister and thank him for giving us such an explanation of Dr. Muldoon's CV, if I may say that. It seems to me that we have exactly the right man in Dr. Muldoon. The role is important given that we have such a young population that is also increasing at the fastest rate in the EU. We need someone who can listen to children, and based on what we have heard today from various speakers, I think we have somebody...

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