§ MR. HANBURY
asked for leave to introduce a Bill to appoint additional Commissioners for executing the Acts for granting a Land Tax and other rates and taxes.
§ MR. F. S. STEVENSON (Suffolk, Eye)
complained that a provision had been introduced into this Bill from an old Act of George III. requiring a property qualification. In one of the clauses every Land Tax Commissioner was to have a property qualification amounting to an income of about £100 a year out of land. Hon. Members would be aware that in addition to the Justices, who were ex officio Land Tax Commissioners, that House, under successive Bills brought in each Session, had given to each Member a right of nominating Land Tax Commissioners. In his view a little more time ought to be given before such a measure was introduced. The property qualification of £100 per annum in land was required to be possessed, by the Land Tax Commissioners, under a clause in an old Act of George III., and in his opinion that qualification ought to be abolished. He felt bound to oppose the Measure at its present stage, because it was an instance of the evil of legislation by reference to previous Acts of Parliament, and therefore it could not be amended in Committee.
§ MR. HANBURY
said that the hon. Member was mistaken in supposing that this Measure could not be amended in Committee, because it was quite as possible to amend this Bill in the Committee stage as any other Measure. Whatever objections the hon. Gentleman had to the Bill could properly be urged in Committee. The hon. Member had put a question on the subject to the right hon. Gentleman the Leader of the Opposition (Sir William Harcourt), in 1893, when the latter informed him that the Government had nothing to do with the matter.
§ The House divided.—Ayes, 262; Noes, 111.—(Division List, No. 8.)
§ Bill presented accordingly, and read the first time; to be read 2a upon Thursday, 5th March, and to be printed.—[Bill 93.]