Gormley, John

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Seanad Éireann Debate
Vol. 203 Nbr. 12

Wildlife (Amendment) Bill 2010: Second Stage

I am pleased to table the Wildlife (Amendment) Bill 2010 before the House and I look forward to an informed debate during its passage through the Seanad.More Button

The renewed programme for Government includes a commitment to introducing legislation to prohibit the practice of deer hunting with packs of dogs. This short Bill provides for the banning of that ...More Button

Section 26(1) of the Wildlife Act 1976 provides that I, as Minister, may grant to the master or other person in charge of a pack of hounds a licence authorising the hunting of deer by that pack dur...More Button

There is only one stag hound pack in the State, which operates in County Meath. Since becoming Minister, I have had concerns from an animal welfare and public safety point of view relating to the ...More Button

Public safety issues are also involved, as it is not possible for the hunt to prevent deer in flight from leaping through hedges onto public roads. Senators may be aware of an incident last Decemb...More Button

These are not isolated incidents. I have much anecdotal evidence of further incidents. Were there to be an accident with serious implications, there would be political repercussions. The Opposit...More Button

The Bill is short and simple. Section 2 provides for the deletion of the section in the 1976 Act that allows me, as Minister, to grant a licence for the hunting of deer with a pack of hounds. Sec...More Button

Section 4 of the Bill addresses a problem that arose recently in regard to licences to shoot game during the open seasons. The Wildlife Act requires a hunter to have a licence to hunt certain bird...More Button

This matter should be borne in mind. As Senators know, it has been suggested that this legislation is somehow the thin edge of the wedge and that we will stop shooting etc. The Bill contains the ...More Button

To address the certification problem, the Bill amends the Wildlife Acts so a new section 29(5)(a) is created whereby a firearm certificate issued for a shotgun between 1 August 2009 and 1 Au...More Button

Sections 5, 6 and 8 of the Bill are technical consequential amendments to section 4.More Button

I will turn to the part of the Bill relating to the increase in penalties for wildlife-related crime. Section 7 provides for increased penalties for offences under the Wildlife Acts. I have decid...More Button

Turning to the general reaction to the proposed legislation, I reject the notion that the Bill is an attack on country pursuits or will lead to an urban-rural split. The legislation’s passag...More Button

Some hunting organisations have cited the Bill as a clear sign of an all-out attack on the hunting fraternity. As the Bill will affect the last carted stag hunt in the country, this hardly constit...More Button

Turning again to the hunt, some of the debate in the Dáil concerned its economic contribution to the economy of Meath and north Dublin. This was examined in the regulatory impact analysis w...More Button

It has been said this Bill along with the Dog Breeding Establishments Bill is evidence of an attack on rural Ireland. This charge is being levelled all the time. I am aware that Members of both H...More Button

In conclusion, I reiterate that the Bill has three main purposes: to ban the practice of hunting deer with packs of hounds, to increase the various fines for wildlife related offences and to resolv...More Button

I look forward to engaging in productive debate on this legislation and I commend the Bill to the House.More Button

The Senator should try and be factual. He should be truthful.More Button