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Irish Mayors And Commissions Of Assize

Volume 90: debated on Thursday 7 March 1901

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I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that the mayor of the city of Waterford is entitled, under charter of Charles I., to be included in the commission of assize for the city of Waterford; and whether he can give any explanation of the fact that the present mayor of the city has been excluded from the commission issued for the spring assizes this year.

With my right lion, friend's permission. I will reply to this question. I have not as yet been able to procure the patent to which the question refers. My impression is however, that it only qualified the mayor to sit as a member of the commission, not entitled him. I would refer the hon. Member to an answer given by me on the 20th of February last year to a question put by the hon. Member for East Clare for the explanation why the mayors of the different assize towns in Ireland have been omitted from the commission of assize.

May I ask the right hon. Gentleman if he will be kind enough to inform the present House of Commons the reason why these mayors who are qualified, if not entitled, to sit on these commissions, and have been so sitting from time immemorial, have been suddenly struck off?

I have already explained that they have not been struck off. Their names simply have not been included. The positions winch they occupy make them liable to be parties in litigation likely to come before the judges, and that is the reason why they have not been associated in the commission.