This week in the Dáil: May 10-12, 2011

With the 24th Seanad still a week away from holding its first session, and with details of the Oireachtas Committees not expected to be announced until some time this week, it’s just the Dáil this week – with most of the business being occupied by statements on the government’s Jobs Budget/Initiative/whatever it’s called.


The week’s business kicks off with Questions to the Taoiseach at 2:30pm, with questions on commemorations, President Obama’s visit and Cabinet sub-committees top of the agenda, before Joan Burton steps up at 3:15pm for Questions to the Minister for Social Protection.

This could be worth watching – not least because it sees Fianna Fáil’s new Clara recluse, Barry Cowen, taking Burton to task about whether ‘false assumptions’ were made by the past government, of which Cowen’s brother Brian was Taoiseach. There’s also questions about the Tús programme and potential cuts to Child Benefit.

Leaders’ Questions at 4:15pm will no doubt coincide with much of the bluster and fanfare over the jobs initiative, before statements on the Jobs Initiative kick off at 4:36pm.

At 7pm it’s Private Members’ Time, which this week falls to Fianna Fáil’s political donations bill. The Bill essentially gives legal effect to the recommendations of the Moriarty Tribunal, so keep an eye out for Michael Lowry mounting his high horse and throwing his shiny tuppence into the debate. Adjournment matters wrap up the day at 8:30pm.


The opening three items are the reverse of Tuesday’s agenda: Leaders’ Questions begin at 10:30am, a presumably brief Order of Business is slated for 10:51am, and then more Questions to the Taoiseach – including questions about special advisors and dialogue with the country’s various faiths.

The rest of the day, from noon to 7pm (taking out an hour for lunch at 1:30pm) will be eaten up by statements on the jobs initiative, with the political donations bill kicking in at 7pm again. A vote on that will take place at 8:30pm, when adjournment matters wrap up a fairly single-minded day.


Given that most of Thursday’s hours are also set aside for statements on the jobs budget, it’ll be a fairly simple day: the Order of Business at 10:30am certainly won’t take long, and the statements on the jobs budget will then bring us up to 3:30pm.

By then we’ll have Questions to the Minister for Communications, where Pat Rabbitte will be asked about auctioning off the country’s electromagnetic spectrum on foot of a recommendation in the Moriarty Report.

Adjournment matters wrap it up at 4:45pm, and everybody goes home. Those committees really can’t come soon enough.

All of the week’s business can be viewed on our live Dáil stream.