§ Considered in Committee.
§ Clause 1,
§ REMOVAL OF DOUBT AS TO INCIDENCE OF AND APPORTIONMENT OF RENT CHARGE ON ACCOUNT OF EXTRAORDINARY TITHE RENT CHARGE.
§ (1.) Where the Commissioners or the Board of Agriculture have certified under the principal Act the capital value of an extraordinary charge on a farm or parcel of land described in their certificate, the annual rentcharge under the principal Act shall be and be deemed always to have been a charge on the farm or parcel of land so described.
§ (2.) The enactments relating to the alteration of an apportionment of ordinary tithe rentcharge shall apply to the annual rentcharge under the principal Act as if it were apportioned tithe rentcharge within the meaning of the said enactments, and any part of the annual rentcharge which is apportioned may be separately redeemed under the principal Act, and the amount of the capital value payable for the redemption of each such part shall be in proportion to the altered apportionment.
§ *THE PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD or AGRICULTURE (Mr. WALTER LONG,) Liverpool, West Derby
thought the hon. Gentleman could not have been present on the Second Reading when he gave an explanation to the House of the object of the Bill. The object was to remove a misapprehension which existed at the present time, and which had tended to alter what was the unquestionable intention of Parliament when the last Act was passed in I886. The object of the Measure was two-fold. In the first place whereas extraordinary tithe had been payable up to that date only in respect of that portion of the farm or parcel of land which was then under cultivation for extraordinary purposes, and whereas at the same time any one bringing land under cultivation of an extraordinary character became at once liable to pay extraordinary tithe, it was urged that there was a difficulty in the way of the tithe owner, inasmuch as he could not identify the particular parcel of land. liable to the extraordinary tithe. On 283 the other hand there was a difficulty in the way of the cultivator, as he became liable to extraordinary payment so soon as he had brought the land under cultivation, even if it might not be remunerative for the first few years. This led to the compromise which existed at the time of the passing of the Extraordinary Tithe Act of 1886. The extraordinary tithe so taken as existing was capitalised at so many years' purchase, and interest at 4 per cent. on the capitalised value was fixed as the sum payable in respect of the extraordinary tithe on that particular parcel of land. On the other hand the tithe owner was given the increased advantages of being able to claim this sum of extraordinary tithe upon the whole farm and not upon that portion of it which up to 1886 had been liable. The arrangement advantaged both tithe owner and tithe payers, and the Bill had met with no opposition in that House, there being no Amendment on the Paper. He hoped the hon. Gentleman would deem this explanation satisfactory.
§ MR. LAURENCE HARDY (Kent, Ashford)
could not agree with the right hon. Gentleman that there was no opposition at all in the districts concerned about this matter.
§ MR. HARDY
said it was rather difficult to understand the exact bearing of this clause, owing to the great changes which might have taken place since the Act of 1886 was passed. He did not in any way wish to delay the passing of the Bill, because the right hon. Gentleman had assured him that it was absolutely necessary to the proper carrying out of the compromise so arrived at; but he could not allow the clause to go through Committee without expressing his doubt whether it might not in its terms cause new difficulties in connection with this particular charge.
MR. CARVELL WILLIAMS (Notts, Mansfield)
said the right hon. Gentleman had not explained to the House the meaning of extraordinary tithe. As 284 some hon. Members knew, it was leviable on land upon which hops were grown—[Mr. LONG: "Not hops alone!"]—and the Act to which the right hon. Gentleman had referred was the result of an inquiry by a Select Committee. He understood this Measure made no alteration in the substance of the law, but simply met a technical difficulty which had occurred in the administration of the law. He thought, therefore, the Bill ought to be allowed to pass through.
§ Clause ordered to stand part of the Bill.
§ Clause 2,—