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mere passage for our redundant population to the United States. At present, in consequence of the disabilities under which the Canadas were labouring, the strongest inducements were held out to emigrants to pass over to these States. He would suggest that Government should give up the clergy reserves, which, without being available to the clergy to any great extent, were great bars to the cultivation and improvement of the country. It might afterwards be a subject of consideration what provision should be made for the clergy. As to the propriety of leaving every sect to take care of its own Church, he would give no opinion at present; it was undoubtedly a question of much difficulty, but as he had himself been in colonies where the various sects lived in the utmost harmony, he should be disposed to consider it unwise to give a dominant power to one sect which was likely to disturb that harmony. The House had a proof of this evil in that unhappy country, Ireland. He had been pleased to hear the right hon. Baronet (Sir George Murray) repeat the liberal opinions which all who knew him were convinced he entertained with respect to the colonies.

Mr. Hume in moving the petition be printed, apologized to the House for having omitted to mention, that the petitioners considered themselves the best judges as to what was to be done with the clergy reserves, and they prayed they might be allowed to make such arrangements as they thought proper with regard to them.

Petition to be printed.

time for carrying the Bill into operation for a late period; he would say June next; that in the interim they might have an opportunity of considering its provisions, and, if necessary, of introducing a measure for further improving them.

Lord Althorp observed, in reply to the hon. Member, that it seemed extremely desirable, to those better informed on the subject than he was, that the Bill should come into operation in the beginning of the year, If it did not come into operation in January, 1832, it would postpone, most probably, the Bill till 1833, although all admitted the defectiveness of the present system, and that those defects called loudly and promptly for remedy. All admitted, too, that the Bill would remedy many of the evils of the system. It was probable, however, that there might be improvements suggested, and amendments hereafter made; yet the passing of the Bill now, to take effect in January, 1832, would be no greater impediment to those amendments than passing it with a clause not to take effect until June, 1832. It would, he was informed, too, be highly inconvenient that the Bill should come into operation in the middle of the year. As all were of opinion that it was highly desirable the improvements introduced by the Bill should take place, he, should press the clause for giving the Bill effect in the commencement of 1832.

Mr. Freshfield would take the opportunity of making a suggestion to the noble Lord, which might have the effect of removing any further objections to the progress of the Bill at present. He could assure the noble Lord that he made no objection to the measure from any party motives: on the contrary, he concurred in the principle of the measure, and thought it would introduce a much better system than that at present existing, but there were parts of the detail to which he did object: what, however, he would suggest to the noble Lord was, that he should fix the

Sir Charles Wetherell said, the proposition made by his hon. friend was a most reasonable one, and he was surprised at the disposition of Ministers to press a very important measure through its stages when the patronage of the Lord Chancellor the nomination of all the registrars and assig

was to take place immediately, while the Bill was not to come into operation until January next. These new offices embraced situations with salaries amounting to 26,000 a-year, and those appointed to them would derive a right to rating for superannuation and salary, from the moment of passing the Bill. He understood that the noble and learned Lord had this very day, from the Woolsack, repudiated the charge of being a second Cardinal Wolsey; he repeated, however, with such a Bill as this in his hand, he had every claim to the title.

BANKRUPTCY COURT BILL -COMMITTEE SECOND DAY.] The Attorney-nees, General moved the Order of the Day for the House again resolving itself into a Committee on this Bill.

The Attorney General would not, in this stage, anticipate the objections which ought to be made regularly in the Committee, further than by assuring the House,

that the great recommendation of the Bill, | superannuation allowances to these Comnext to the speedy administration of missioners. Persons who served the public justice in this branch of the law, was the should be fairly and liberally paid, but great saving which it would effect to the their salaries ought to continue no longer public. When they came, in Committee, than they fulfilled the duties of their to the clause as to superannuation and office. At the present moment the counsalaries of officers, he should distinctly try had to pay seven millions annually show that the noble Lord at the head of for retired military and naval pensions, the Chancery Court had not aimed at, nor and more than a million a-year to persons would he obtain, the extent of patronage it who had held civil situations. These sums was alleged he required or sought under had increased a million and a half since the Bill, as, in point of fact, the salaries the conclusion of the war. The Comof the officers alluded to under the provi-mittee which had sat for the purpose of looking into the amounts of salaries had recommended, that for the future no civil officer should be entitled to a retired allowance, and the absurdity of the system. to be established by this Bill would be manifest when it was considered that a half-pay lieutenant-colonel or captain, after twenty years hard service, received perhaps about 150l. per annum, while those Commissioners, whose services had been amply remunerated were to be entitled, after one year's attendance in this Court, to a retiring pension of 2001. a-year.

sions of the Bill would not commence until January next.

Mr. Hume said, he most strongly objected to the superannuation clause. It was a departure from the pledge of Ministers, so distinctly given, that they would retrench all unnecessary expense. Here were officers-the Secretary, for example, with not less than 1,2001. a-year to be appointed-why should they not insure their lives, as in other departments of the public service, for the benefit of their families, if families they had? It looked too much like a job. Divided as persons in that House were into parties in politics, and having, of course, adherents and friends and relatives, and even predilections for those with whom the leaders of parties there generally acted, it could not but be looked on with suspicion, that these appointments in favour of the friends of the present Ministry, should be taken out of the general rule laid down as to superannuation of public officers. If, next year, they should pass a bill to limit and restrain the superannuation system, it would seem more than ordinarily suspicious that the Ministry should have availed themselves of this short interval, before the passing of such a bill of retrenchment, to put their nominees out of the reach of the general measure already anticipated. In the United States there were no retiring allowances, and the same system ought to be adopted here. The public ought not to be saddled with such a burthen. He wholly disapproved of the system, as well as the plan for pensioning off the present Commissioners. They had been amply remunerated for their services, and they had a profession from which they ought to derive an income. They had also been paid fees for their attendance, and they might as well be called on to give a retiring allowance to a physician when his patient died, as

Lord Althorp said, that the provisions referred to by the hon. member for Middlesex were not essential to the principle of the Bill, and the proper time to discuss them was in the Committee. It was obvious that judicial officers must stand upon a different footing with regard to superannuation allowances from other civil officers. If the Judges were not allowed a retiring pension, they would remain in office beyond the age at which they ought to retire. He should be sorry that anything in the Bill should be taken as a precedent affecting the general question of superannuation. With respect to several of the offices connected with the Court, he was ready to admit the same rule ought to be applied to them as to other offices, but in general he agreed with the hon. Member, that the present system of superannuation was a eat grievance.

Mr. Hunt said, this Bill did not look as if the noble Lord were following out his own principles. He had understood that it was the boast of the present Ministers, that they proposed to carry on the Government without the aid of patronage.

Lord Althorp observed, that he had only said the Government would do as much as possible without patronage, for he was satisfied that it was a greater evil than good. He trusted the House did not

of justice, would at once prevent such an
abuse of authority as hon. Gentlemen op-
posite seemed to anticipate. If anything
of the sort were to happen, it would imme-
diately be brought under the attention of
the Legislature. It had been said, that this
Bill was hurried through the House in an
improper manner, and without due discus-
sion. But, surely the House must re-
collect how often this subject had been
brought under its attention, and how many
complaints had been made from all the
great commercial places in the kingdom,
of the manner in which the Bankrupt-law
had been administered.
He would re-
commend the hon. member for Preston,
who did not appear to be very well ac-
quainted with the defects of the present
system, to spend a little time in reading
some of the petitions that had been pre-
sented to this House on the subject, and
also some of the reports of the Com-
mittees that had been appointed to inquire
into the matter. In 1818, a Committee
was appointed to inquire into the subject,
and that Committee, after receiving the
evidence of the most eminent lawyers, ex-
perienced solicitors, extensive merchants,
and respectable traders, who all concurred
in condemning the present system, pre-
sented a report to the House, and this Bill
was the very measure, in substance and
spirit, which that Committee recommend-

Mr. Daniel Whittle Harvey said, it
appeared from the objections made to the
present measure, and to the change of
system in the Bankruptcy Court, as if this
were the first time when anything had
been said against the mode of administer-ed
ing that branch of the law. The nature of
the opposition that had been manifested
must produce an effect upon the public
mind. One of the chief arguments that
had been urged against this Bill, and the
only objection that the hon. member for
Preston stated against it, was, that it
would give great patronage to the present
Lord Chancellor. But if the measure was
good and just in itself, the argument
respecting patronage ought not to be
regarded. To no person could the dis-
posal of the appointments created by this
Bill with more propriety be intrusted
than to the Lord Chancellor for the time
being. Indeed, the stoutest opponent of
the Bill would not wish the patronage
of judicial offices to be placed in other
hands than in those of the head of the
law. If an improper use was made of the
patronage intrusted to that high office, the
holder was amenable to the laws of the
country, and the jealousy with which this
House and the public always regarded any

to be adopted. Upwards of fifty witnesses were examined upon that occasion, and no person who would take the trouble to refer to these names would say that all these respectable persons were actuated by party feelings. Three of the most eminent practitioners in that Court, namely, Mr. Cullen, Mr. Montagu, and the present Lord Henley, all joined in condemning its constitution, and they agreed that it was impossible to speak in too strong terms of the mode in which business was transacted in that Court. The present Bill was, in letter and in spirit, in perfect accordance with the recommendation of the Committee, and more especially the mode of forming the Court of Review, which had been so much condemned by hon. Members opposite. He would not take up the time of the House at present, nor do anything calculated to impede their getting into Committee, but if an opportunity had been afforded him at an earlier period, and the hon. and learned member for Boroughmatter connected with the administration | bridge had spared him one of the many

believe they were making a change in a Court of Justice for the purpose of acquiring patronage. If any persons did think so, he would recommend them to look at the provisions of the Bill, and they would find patronage would be diminished by it. Certainly, however, he was of opinion that in all cases where appointments were necessary they ought to be filled up by Go


Mr. Hunt said, the noble Lord had expressed nearly the same opinion as he had understood him to entertain, viz. that the Government was not to be carried on by means of patronage; but this Bill, notwithstanding, would give a pretty tolerable share to one of the members of the Cabinet. He must complain of the haste with which the Bill had been pushed forward, for which he could understand no other reason than that there were fifty new places to be at the disposal of the Lord Chancellor. He regretted, however, to hear the noble and learned Lord compared to Cardinal Wolsey. He did not believe him to be so rapacious of patronage and personal emolument as that person undoubtedly was, if history told the truth.


hours during which he had occupied the time of the House, he would have endeavoured to shew the absolute necessity of such a measure as the present, as also the probability that it would work extremely well, and that, at all events, the experiment should have a fair trial.


against the present measure, he would say one word; and he assured the House that he would not take up much time in the few observations which he felt desirous of making. He did not think that any charge need be made on the public for the maintenance of the new Court, for there were different sources of revenue already existing which might be applied to that purpose. First of all there was the undivided surplus of estates which had come under the cognizance of the Bankrupt Court; and secondly, there were the unclaimed dividends, which amounted to an exceedingly large sum. He knew that, in the course of fifteen or twenty years, unclaimed dividends to no less an amount than 2,000,0001. had been collected, and he was convinced that many millions remained yet uncollected. These revenues would be found more than sufficient to pay all the expenses of the new Court. Several hon. Members who had addressed the House on this subject had thought proper to disclaim being influenced by party considerations. He considered that any such disclaimer was entirely uncalled for. This was no party question; at least, he knew that the noble and learned Lord who presided in the Court of Chancery did not consider it so; for he had, during the preparation of the measure, consulted every person, no matter what his politics might be, who could communicate valuable information, or make useful suggestions. A great deal had been said with respect to the patronage which would be created by this Bill; but those hon. Members who

Mr. Pollock said, that the Bill before the House would, in his opinion, provide a good and efficient Court, in the place of the present defective and most inefficient system-substitute despatch for delay, and economy for extravagance. That was not a hasty and ill-advised opinion, for he had given the subject all the consideration in his power. He had had repeated opportunities of forming a judgment on this subject during the course of his experience -and he might, perhaps, be allowed to add, that he believed, with the exception of Mr. Cullen, and his hon. and learned friend opopposite (Mr. Serjeant Wilde) he had had more experience of this Court than any member of the profession. From a very early period of his career he was accustomed to attend the Court of the Commissioners of Bankrupts day after day, and year after year, and he agreed in the conclusion arrived at by his hon. and learned friend, that it was the very worst tribunal in existence for the administration of justice. But in making that observation he felt bound to state, that more honourable and upright men did not exist than many of the present Commissioners. He had the happiness of living on terms of intimacy with many of those Gentlemen: the defects that he complained of arose from the very constitution of this Court. Some of the Commission-objected to the Bill on the score of its iners never came near it, and he knew one creasing the patronage of the Lord ChanList before which he had repeatedly been cellor, should consider, that when a new engaged, in which one of the Commissioners Court was established it was necessary to did not attend for fourteen years. On in- appoint Judges to that Court; and therevestigation it would be found, that never fore patronage must be vested somewhere. more than one half of the Commissioners Now, who was the most fit person to have attended. It often happened that, after the the disposal of those appointments? He proceedings had commenced, one of the had no hesitation in saying, that looking Commissioners would want to go away, to the character of the noble individual either out of town for pleasure, or on bu- who now held the Great Seal, there was no siness to some other Court in which he was person to whom that patronage could be engaged in short, the system was so de- more safely intrusted than to that noble fective, that no time ought to be lost in and learned Lord; and the appointments improving it. It was said, "Why not which, it was whispered, were already inwait until next year?" but he contended, tended, reflected the greatest credit on his that the Legislature would be culpable in judgment. Knowing, from experience, procrastinating the removal of acknow- that the present system was most defective, ledged defects in a most important part of and being of opinion that the proposed the administration of the law. With re- change would have a most advantageous ference to the want of economy charged operation, he did hope that no unnecessary

delay would be thrown in the way of the passing of the Bill. He thought there could be no doubt that in the details of the Bill economy had been consulted; and the creditors would be greatly benefitted by its being carried into effect.

Mr. John Wood said, that an hon. and learned Member (Sir Charles Wetherell) had designated this measure as a gross job, which stunk in the nostrils. He wished to know whether the hon. and learned Member likewise considered the conduct of Lords Thurlow and Eldon stunk in the nostrils? Lord Thurlow had given to his nephew two offices worth 12,000l. a year, the reversion of which offices had been secured by Lord Eldon for his son. This was part of the patronage which the present Lord Chancellor meant to cut off, and yet the time of the House had been wasted for five or six nights in discussing the expense of the new system, which would not exceed 26,0001,

Sir John Newport considered, that the Bill would remedy the evils of the present system in the most economical and efficient manner. There was one clause in the Bill, relating to official assignees, upon which he wished to address a few words to the House, but he thought the most proper time for so doing would be in Committee. He considered it unfair towards the Speaker, who was oppressed with business, to keep him in the Chair to listen to debates which ought regularly to be entered upon in Committee. With respect to official assignees, he would at present only say, that he knew, from his own experience as a commercial man, that the great grievance of the present system was, the want of official assignees.

Mr. Alderman Waithman said, he had considerable experience in subjects of this nature, and when the matter had been formerly before the House he had suggested alterations in some degree similar to what were contained in that Bill. He knew that the present system was very inefficient, and he considered that the proposed Bill would effect a most beneficial change. He did not mean to say, that it would not be found, after some time, to require alteration, but he thought that it was, upon the whole, a most excellent measure.

had been made by an hon. and learned Gentleman near him, which would have had the effect of shortening the time spent in debate, had not been agreed to by the noble Lord. That proposition was, to let the Bill be passed, but not to allow it to come into operation until June next, and in the mean time an opportunity would be afforded of making inquiries, and any alterations that might be thought desirable might be made. The Bill had not been brought under the attention of the House of Commons at a time when proper consideration could be given to it, and when an investigation of the subject, in all its details, could take place. The hon. member for Colchester observed, that this was not a new measure, for it was founded on the recommendations contained in the various Reports of the Committee up-stairs; but he would beg him to recollect, that a considerable portion of the Members of the present House were not Members of the Parliament in which those Reports were made; but the House was almost entirely constituted of a different set of individuals. He knew that a Court of Appeal, formed of the Commissioners, had repeatedly been recom commended, but this was very different from having an entirely new constituted Court. His hon. and learned friend said, that the objection to the Bill coming into operation in January, would apply to any time, and that it might as well be postponed to an indefinite period as to be deferred to June. He was called, by the courtesy of the House, learned, though his professional experience had been extremely small, and yet the noble Lord, certainly with not more professional experience, said that he could not consent to postpone the operation of this Bill beyond January next, as it would lead to great inconvenience. He (Mr. Praed) had not heard any positive inconvenience pointed out, which could result from postponing the operation of the Bill from January to June. He would not now go into the question of the official assignees, upon which point he entertained strong objections, but should defer what he had to say on the subject for the Committee. With respect to the imputations that had been cast upon the Lord Chancellor, he must disclaim having any participation in them. He was old enough to know that the imputation of being actuated by unworthy motives would be cast upon those who took an active part in political matters;

Mr. Praed said, that if any discussions had been introduced merely for the purpose of protracting the passing of the Bill, he certainly had not been a party to them. He was very sorry that the proposition which

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