McGRATH CHOOSES SAVING GOVT. OVER CREDIT UNION FEARS
STATEMENT BY CLLR AODHÁN Ó RÍORDÁIN
Labour Party Representative, Dublin North CentralThursday, 1 July, 2010
The decision of two Independent Deputies to vote with the government today saved Fianna Fail and the Greens from the potentially embarrassing situation of having to rely on the casting vote of the Ceann Comhairle to save them on a key financial measure.The government won the vote on the final stages of the Central Bank Bill 2010 by a margin of 69 to 65 votes. However, both Deputies Finian McGrath (Dublin North Central) and Joe Behan (Wicklow) voted with the government on this occasion. Had they voted with the opposition, the margin would have been 67 and 67 and the government would then have required the casting vote of the Ceann Comhairle to save it.
It is difficult to see how the government could have survived after having had to rely on the casting vote of the Ceann Comhairle on such a key financial measure as the Central Bank Bill. The decision of Finian McGrath to support such a flawed Bill is all the more surprising given the refusal of the government to support changes to the legislation sought by the Credit Union Movement and I am sure that they he will be asked to explain his position by credit union members in Dublin North Central.
With the growing number of defections from the Fianna Fail ranks, the government is clearly relying more and more on Independent Deputies for support and may be offering ‘incentives’ to encourage them to vote with the government. Deputies are, of course, entitled to vote whatever way they wish, but I think that the public are entitled to know if any deals have been done to secure the votes of Deputy McGrath.The people want to see this demoralised and politically bankrupt government out of office. Those nominally Independent TDs who opt to throw it a lifeline and keep it in office will pay a high price with the electorate when the election comes.
SEE BELOW STATEMENT FROM IRISH LEAGUE OF CREDIT UNIONS:
Credit Union deeply unhappy with Central Bank Reform Bill proposals as small loans will
Media Release: 01 July 2010
IRISH LEAGUE OF CREDIT UNIONS
CENTRAL BANK REFORM BILL 2010
The Irish League of Credit Unions is the representative body for over 500 Credit Unions on the island of Ireland. It is Ireland’s successful financial co-operative run by and for 2.9 million members. It accounts for €11.9bn of savings; €14bn in assets and (at over € 750m) is Ireland’s leading provider of social finance.
Dail Eireann will today discuss the Central Bank Reform Bill 2010. Contained within the Bill are proposals to change the day to day operations of credit unions for the future. The Irish League of Credit Unions is deeply unhappy with many of the provisions contained within the Bill and have had several meetings with the Minister and the Department of Finance to express our views. We do not feel that our concerns and the concerns of our member credit unions have been taken into consideration either in the original Bill or the subsequent suggested amendments to it. Credit Unions exist to help their members. New regulations designed for Banks will prevent us from helping ordinary members with any financial difficulties. The new proposals will mean too much red tape and extra costs will hinder credit unions in helping members reschedule loans in these difficult times.
The ILCU feels that the Minister for Finance and the Registrar of Credit Unions are attempting to control credit unions in an unreasonable and unnecessary way which will ultimately mean that credit unions will be unable to continue to meet members’ needs into the future. The sections which we object to relate to the long term micromanagement of credit unions by the Regulator initially contained within a proposed new Section 35A and 35B, and which are now, for the most part, present under a proposed new Section 35 (2) of the Credit Union Act, 1997. All constituency co-ordinators have been contacted with a view to lobbying their local representatives.