The Cabinet was due to consider measures today aimed at protecting the integrity of the electoral system.

It was expected that Minister for Housing and Local Government Darragh O'Brien would bring amendments to the Electoral Reform Bill, which seek to ensure finance from outside the State does not influence elections.

The general scheme of the Electoral Reform Bill was published in January of last year, and was described by Minister O'Brien at the time as the most significant development for Ireland's electoral system in decades.

It establishes an Electoral Commission, which will be independent of Government, to assume duties like regulate online political advertising, oversee the electoral register and carry out the work of Referendum Commissions.

Further amendments of the Bill was due to go to Cabinet today to ensure that donations and resources from non-citizens outside the State are not utilised to influence elections; and to ensure transparent fundraising by all political parties.

Another amendment will provide for same-day island voting at electoral events.

It's expected that the amendments, included in the Programme for Government, prohibit political donations that are in the form of cryptocurrency.

They will also impose a new obligation on the leaders of political parties to provide an annual written statement, and an accompanying statutory declaration, to the Standards in Public Office Commission stating that all donations have been declared and that no other donations, either in cash or in kind, took place.

The proposals would provide for the inclusion of credit unions in the definition of "institution". This would allow political donation accounts to be opened and maintained within credit unions by the recipients of political donations, rather than such accounts being solely confined to banks and building societies.

They would also strengthen the definitions of "subsidiary organisation", and "donation" as set out in the Electoral Act 1997.

Separately, Minister for Justice Helen McEntee was expected to seek Cabinet approval for the renewal of the Offences against the State and Criminal Justice Acts - which includes the operation of the non-jury Special Criminal Court for serious organised crime.

The acts, which were updated in the aftermath of the Omagh bombing in 1998, were subject to an independent review, under the Chair of Mr Justice Michael Peart, and a final report is expected this Autumn.

Minister for Further and Higher Education Simon Harris was expected to bring forward proposals on improving access to education, in line with increased investment which he announced.

The proposals include ring-fenced Higher Education places for further education students, targeted measures to improve access for mature students and further changes to the CAO.

Minister for Children Roderic O'Gorman was expected to bring to Cabinet the Assisted Decision Making Capacity Bill to provide for the end of the wardship system in Ireland, and the full establishment of the Decision Support Service.

Minister O'Gorman secured Cabinet approval to draft the Bill last November and he committed to implementing it by next month.

Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue is expected to seek Cabinet approval for funding to help develop the domestic seed potato sector, as it continues to grapple with the fallout of Brexit.

Charlie McConalogue is expected to seek approval for funding (file pic)

It is believed the minister's plan is to inject €3m over the next two years and support the development of native production of such seed, which is a highly specialised farming activity.

Minister O'Brien was also likely to bring an amendment to Cabinet regarding the Planning and Development (Substitute Consent) Bill 2022.

It's understood the amendment seeks to provide for certain flexibilities at planning application stage where final details and specifications of the development may not be confirmed.

Another amendment aims to ensure that where the option to appeal to An Bord Pleanála is available, this option must be utilised prior to the taking of a Judicial Review.