Today in Leinster House: November 8, 2011

The Dáil business this week is eaten up by the passage of four bills – three of which are longstanding – while the Seanad business is back to its relatively straightforward nature.

Here’s what will be getting business going on Tuesday.

1:30pm – Communications, Natural Resources and Agriculture – It’s the agricultural sides who this week give their input on what should be cut, and what should be left in place, in the 2012 Budget. Among the groups are the IFA, the Irish Creamery Milk Suppliers Association and Macra na Feirme. Room 3.

2pm – Questions (Minister for Health) – James Reilly is the first up to bat in the Dáil for the new legislative week, fielding questions on converting hospitals into trusts, the status of the emergency unit at Monaghan, a looming “health epidemic” as a result of grit weed, the budget overruns at rural hospitals, and the constant issue of overcrowding and patients on trolleys.

2pm – Environment, Transport, Culture and the Gaeltacht – The committee gets back to Room 4 to resume its meetings on the general water supply – hearing input from Jack O’Sullivan of Environmental Management Services, and from the River Shannon Protection Alliance.

2:30pm – Order of Business – The Seanad kicks off with its usual 75 minutes of daily blather as members do their best to raise issues they deem prudent to discuss.

3:15pm – Leaders’ Questions – The Dáil’s main event of the Tuesday will see Enda Kenny step up for the usual batch of barbs from Micheál Martin, Gerry Adams and the technical group.

3:36pm – Questions (Taoiseach) – Among the more scripted offerings to follow this up are questions on the progress of the cabinet sub-committee on health, the working of the chief state solicitor’s office, recent Eurozone developments and – ha! – whether he has recently held any bilateral discussions with “Prime Minister George Papandreou”.

3:45pm – Junior Certificate Reform – Ruairí Quinn pops upstairs to give members a two-hour briefing on the plans to scrap and reform the Junior Cert,

4:36pm – Order of Business – The Dáil’s daily session of having TDs complain about the status of promised legislation – while Ceann Comhairle Seán Barrett tries to stop them from making the verboten political statements – is scheduled to take 30 minutes.

5:06pm – Topical Issues – The daily oversubscribed session of topical issues will see four TDs get the chance to press ministers on matters they deem important.

5:45pm – Matters on the Adjournment – Senators get a similar chance to broach three issues of importance before the Upper House wraps up for the night.

5:54pm – Motion re Smithwick Tribunal of Inquiry – Judge Peter Smithwick’s tribunal into alleged Garda collusion in the murder of two RUC officers in 1989 is currently meant to finish its business by the end of November. A month ago Smithwick wrote to the Dáil asking it to extend this deadline, and here TDs will spend 25 minutes debating whether to do so.

6:19pm – Access to Central Treasury Fund (Commission of Energy Regulation) Bill 2011 [Seanad] (second stage) – The Dáil gets a quick look at legislation passed by the Seanad last week, which adds the Commission of Energy Regulation to a list of agencies which are allowed to access cheap credit from the National Treasury Management Agency.

7:30pm – Private Members’ Business [Sinn Féin] – This week’s opposition motion is on the hot topic of honouring unguaranteed bank bonds. Following last week’s repayment of a $1bn unsecured bond in Anglo Irish Bank, Sinn Féin’s motion (full text here) lists the upcoming unsecured bonds issued by Anglo, and asks the government simply not to honour them. Discussions will continue until 9pm.

All of the day’s business can be viewed on the streams: