Deputy Lowry has criticised the Government for their failure to adequately tackle the on-going societal problems of personal insolvency and mortgage debt.
Deputy Lowry stated that a prime example of this is the on-going delay in bringing forward a final bill to tackle the growing problem of personal insolvency. The Independent T.D. for North Tipperary and South Offaly has stated that this delay is unacceptable and is causing untold distress and concern to numerous individuals throughout the constituency and beyond.
Deputy Lowry stated;
“It has been reported that the finalised personal insolvency bill which was due to be published by the end of this month is still being drafted and will now face a delay of a further two months, at least. The Heads of the Personal Insolvency Bill were published in January but to date there has been little visible furtherance of this Bill.”
“While I accept that this is a very complex and lengthy bill which raises a number of legal issues, I believe that this further delay is intolerable. The Department of Justice have stated that they need to ensure that the bill is correct and comprehensive and that this is one of the reasons for the delay. While I accept this point it must be stressed that the Government parties at the last general election assured the public that this issue was a priority matter and would be treated as such immediately after the election. Instead we are now in a situation whereby Fine Gael and Labour have been in power for over a year and as of yet we only have a draft bill and no completed legislation.”
“Essentially to date nothing has been done to help those who are struggling with personal insolvency. Whilst this Bill promises numerous debt settlement arrangements, the creation of a State run insolvency service, a cut to the bankruptcy period from 12 to 3 years, as well as numerous other measures these promises mean little until they become a reality. People are suffering while the government drags its heels on this matter. I have seen that myself, first hand, in meeting with constituents. Many people are crippled by the weight of debt and are under enormous stress due to the lack of help and support for their plight. Many have used up their financial reserves and are quite literally at breaking point.”
“This bill must be brought forward without further delay. While I have concerns that it does not go sufficiently far to help those facing insolvency it would be a welcome step forward and should be finalised and advanced without further delay.