Early voting on the islands in elections and referendums to end
Cabinet sanctions ‘money message’ to give effect to move proposed by FF’s Éamon Ó’Cuív
A ballot box for Gola Island, off the west coast of Donegal, is brought to the polling station on the island ahead of the 2016 general election. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times
Early voting in elections and referendums on the islands is to be abolished under changes approved by the Government.
The Cabinet has sanctioned a so-called “money message” to give effect to the move, which was contained in a Private Members’ Bill proposed by Galway West Fianna Fáil TD Éamon O’Cuív.
Voting on the islands will now take place on the same day as in polling stations on the mainland. But the new dispensation will not take effect for the local and European elections on May 24th.
A Private Members’ Bill involving appropriation of public funds cannot proceed beyond second stage to committee unless a money message has been furnished by the Government. Many such Bills in this Dáil are not furnished with a money message and, consequently, are not enacted.
Seán Kyne, Government Chief Whip and Minister for the Islands, and also a Galway West TD, confirmed the Cabinet approved the money message.