The Government has published its legislative programme for the Dáil's summer session, which begins tomorrow.

It intends to publish 17 pieces of legislation between now and the end of the session, including a new Social Housing Bill, a Child Care Bill, and long-awaited legislation on long-term residential care and the establishment of the Dublin Transportation Authority.

Meanwhile, the Government is expected to agree the heads of new legislation dealing with civil partnerships which will allow for the registration of same-sex partnerships in the next couple of weeks.

Once this is done, the legislation will have to be drafted in detail, which is likely to take several months.