Today in Leinster House: October 5, 2011 [updated]

[Updated @ 10.40am]

As with yesterday, today’s business in the two houses is largely taken up with procedural stuff – meaning that the meat of the action will actually take place in committees.

Nonetheless, here’s what the day has in store:

9:30am – Justice, Defence and Equality – The day begins in Room 2, where representatives from Women’s Aid, the Migrant Rights Centre, the Immigrant Council of Ireland, Safe Ireland and Akidwa get together to brief members on the issues of domestic violence and forced labour.

9:30pm – Jobs, Social Protection and Education – Over in Room 3, meanwhile, we may get some indications of just exactly how much is being lost to welfare fraud in Ireland, when officials from the Department of Social Protection brief members on the proposals to address it.

10:30am – Leaders’ Questions – The Dáil’s marquee event will see Enda Kenny up in the stocks once more, as Micheal Martin, Gerry Adams and the Technical Group do their best to lob some rotten tomatoes his way.

10:30am – Order of Business – Upstairs in the Seanad, meanwhile, members will begin the daily discussion on whatever takes their fancy.

10:51am – Order of Business – Having gotten Leaders’ Questions out of the way – and given recent form, this won’t actually happen until around 11am – TDs will rubberstamp the day’s agenda, which will again be largely dominated by a single piece of legislation.

11:21am – Road Traffic (No.2) Bill 2011 [Seanad] (second stage resumed) - The aforementioned legislation – the bill reducing the blood-alcohol level permitted in drivers – will eat up much of the Dáil’s day.

11:45am – Private Members’ Business [Sinn Féin] – The main item of the day upstairs is the Private Members’ Time, which this week falls to the three Sinn Féin senators. They have tabled a particularly contemporary motion condemning the nominations process for the Presidential elections – and calling on the forthcoming constitutional convention to overhaul the process.

2:30pm – Questions (Minister for Finance) – Michael Noonan is up for questions this week; among those on notice are what he proposes to discuss with the EU and IMF next time around; the total cost of the promissory notes for Anglo and Irish Nationwide, contracts between NAMA and developers, and mortgage debt relief.

3pm – Statements on Communications, Energy and Natural Resources – The Seanad’s relatively empty week means most of its time is taken up with sessions of statements; for two hours Pat Rabbitte goes upstairs to hear what Senators have to say about his brief.

3:45pm – Topical Issues – Four issues, 12 minutes, and one minister for each.

4:33pm – as 11.21am – The Road Traffic bill is back on the agenda, for discussion until 7:30pm.

5pm – Matters on the Adjournment – Four items of daily importance get an airing in the upper house before closing time.

6:33pm – Statements on recent events in the Eurozone - A late addition to the schedule, TDs will discuss the recent crisis in Greece, Italy and elsewhere for 90 minutes.

6:30pm – European Union Affairs – In an unusually late sitting, Eamon Gilmore drops in on the committee to discuss proceedings at the UN General Assembly and the government’s priorities for the Global Irish Economic Forum. Room 3.

7:30pm – Private Members’ Business [Fianna Fáil] – The second session of discussion on Fianna Fáil’s motion condemning the government for its plans to close regional army barracks. As per usual, the government will propose an amendment to make the motion more favourable to itself; the Dáil will break at 9pm to vote on the amendment, then (assuming the amendment is carried) the amended version at around 9:15pm, and then everyone will go home.

As always, all of the day’s business can be viewed on the streams: