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There have been enquiries, made this week -as -to - the properly tax arrangements, as to whether any more, would be heard of the schedules, and so forth. Those who . have not made their returns need not be alarmed lest unpleasant consequences should follow their neglect, as the time for sending in the returns was extended to the 30th September, and probably may be yet further extended. The Government introduced a Bill this session to amend the Property Assessment Act, and this Bill we gave almost in full; but when the beer duty was reduced by one-half, this Bill was abandoned. The reason why it was abandoned was that, as it exempted all personal effects from the operation of the property tax, the loss of revenue —some —would be too much, added to the loss of half the beer duty. In these times this was too much to sacrifice, so the Government let their Property Assessment Bill die a natural death, introducing, however, a Bill in the Upper House which greatly simplified the schedules. The documents now in use are clumsy and complicated, and nof one man in five could make head or tail of them without aid ; but the new ones will be more easily understood, and ordinary men will be able to take in their bearings after a moderate amount of study. After deducting debts and liabilities, property owners will only require to give their net taxable value, and the inquisitorial nature of the tax will thus be removed.

Why the Wakanui School Committee found it necessary to levy a tax of three white shillings on every religious, service “or otherwise ” held in their schoolroom we do not know. We suppose the retrenchment policy of the Hall Government. “ knocked ” them a little, and seeing that the reduction of their allowances would leave them somewhat crippled for' funds, they perhaps fancied a three shillings tax on prayers levied during the summer would enable them to accumulate a sum in the warm weather that would supply them with fuel during the winter. We do not know what was their reason, we have not yet learned it. But we are exceedingly glad they have done so—for one reason. That reason is that it has fired the Presbyterian zeal in the district, with the outcome that an acre of land in thevicinityofthe school has been granted to the church by Mr. Clephane, Mr. David Wilson has stood in the gap till after harvest for the cost of a building in which to hold service, a Presbyterian friend in Ashburton has started work on the plans, and as soon as the building is up —which will be just as soon as tenders can be called fm-, sent in, accepted, and fulfilled —a Weekly service will be instituted instead of the present fortnightly one. A considerable amount of feeling has been manifested over the action of the Committee—feeling that will xro doubt tell on the election in January —but we are glad that it is to show itself in the erection of the first church in the district. We like independence, and we congratulate the Presbyterians and their friends on the step they have taken.

South Rakaia Domain Board. —The Domain Board held its ordinary monthly meeting on Thursday. Present—Messrs. G. N. MosktQ fell airman), Robinson, Makeig, apd saf4jr, Mr. Robinson apologised for the absence of Sharp. A letter was received from the £s]}burton County Council, stating sum of Ll5O had been pajd into the Bank to the credit of the Domain Board. The chairman stated that he had applied to the Domain Board at Christchurch for trees, and that his application had been granted. It was resolved t° pusli on the work so as to be able to plaijjfc fchkf season. The secretary, Mr. A, Makeig, had made enquiries about the price f>f found that the prices ranged from tP L2O per pair. It was resolved that at present the Board is not in a position to incur this expense. It was resolved that the front boundary fence of the Domain, and the erection of a gate be left to the Works Committee. It was resolved to procure mixed gum and wattle seed sufficient to sow half a chain in width all round ths Domain. The Works Committee reported that J. G. Cox had completed his contract for ploughing very satisfactorily. Accounts to the amount of L 24 1 4s. 3d., were passed for payment, and the Board adjourned,

Bluelight. —The well-known sire Bluelight has been sold by his owners to a.gentleman in Wairaate, for the sum of 150 guineas.

A Haul. —lt is stated that Mr. G. D. Branson intends to hand over the ten pounds that he recovered in the, trejspass case on Tuesday to the Library. I

Wakanui School Committee. ,-4-Mr. W. McLachlan, of Dunedin, has beep appointed to the mastership of Wakanui School, which position Mr. Guinney recently resigned. j~. .

King of Clubs. —The Middle 'Park Company’s stallion King of Clubs arrived safely at Lyttelton yesterday, by the Roto•mahaha - from Melpoiu'ne. ’ The King is said td'be ih splendid conditiion.

Births, Deaths, and Marriages.— The births this month in the Ashburtppdistrict numbered 31, a falling-off" of. six as compared with last mouth. The deaths wore five, one more than l ist month) while four marriages have been celebrated, three more than last month, k \ “No Apreakance.” l Pafttes'suramoned : for by-law breaches would do well to notea warning given by his Worship yesterday, that if they do not appear in answeivio the charges laid against them they- will; have to pay - the full penalty the law allows for the offences charged against them. ; r Beset with Snares —-It is a character--istic of John Bull-that he goes about-' his work the shortest way, and dons it.) He won’t walk twenty yards if three will do as well. A couple of drovers followed this instinctof John Pull’s nature yesterday, when driving a mob of horses through,{did town. .Crossings'thb that Mr. O’Reilly’s 'johniey ' 'to make famous, they were brought up all stiificlilig by the Sergeant of Police, who asked their names. , He got a laughing reply thptthey had already given their names (o another constable, who had stopped them "earlier in their journey for a similar offencie. Ashburton Library. — A meeting of the ‘Committee.of tlie vV-shburtqp was held on Thursday evening, when there were present Messrs. J. Ward (in the chair), Jacobson, Roberts, Guinness, Young, Gundry, St. G. Douglas, and Shury. The Treasurer reported bthat there was a credit balance of Ll 4 in band. It was decided to send for a number of new bookst and a sub-eommitteo was appointed to draw up a revised list of rules, which ’ ivill be submitted to the next general meeting of subscribers, to I e he’d on Thursday next, notice of which will appear in due courm. ?., :

Cattle Driving,— A case of some interest to drivers arid others was' heard in Court yesterday. ' A son of Mr. Hay T. Smith was fined ss. for driving' cattle through the township during prohibited hours—that is, during the day time. The Borough By-laws provide that ; cattle, sheep,' etc. i-i-for the .word .cattle ” means almost every four-footed thing—can only be driven through the township between the hours of twelve midnight and seven morning, and other hours can only be encroached upon after a permission for such encroachment has been obtained from the Town Council. More especially will this affect those who buy and sell cattle at the saleyards, and it is as well that farmers should be made aware of the consequences if they drive away their purchases- from the yards and along the public street at an hour prohibited by the statutes of the Borough. Vestry Meeting.— At the monthly meeting of St. Stephen’s vestry on Wednesday, which was pretty fully attended, a special resolution approving of the business transacted at the .fast special meeting was passed, and one "confirming the payment by the churchwardens to. Mr. Paige of twenty guineas. It was decided to hold a tioutinuation of the gift; auction on the show cl ay-of the Agricultural and Pastoral Association, the members of the vestry forming a committee for the arrangements, Mr. Gundry scting as secretary—the auction to be held in the Town Hall. To consider the financial condition of the parish and parochial. district, and the best course to'-’follow - to improve it, Messrs. Fooks, Grigg, Walker, and Ward were appointed a sub-commit-tce. It was resolved to ask permission of the Church Property Trustees to use the two vacant sections on the church site, and to authorise the Churchwardens to have new seats made and placed in the transept so soon as a number of sittings sufficient to warrant it have been applied for. On the motion of Ml'. Bullock, seconded by Mr. Gundry, it was decided to warn holders of unpaid sittings that such, if not paid for before the 20th inst., would be let to parties who. had applied for sittings. Elgin School. —The September meeting of the Elgin School Committee was held on Wednesday, in the schbblhouse. Present —Messrs. J. Stanley Bruce (chairman), P. Innes, S. Scott, T. Greenaway, and J. Cochrane. . r T.h.tb minutes of the last held ion the Gth ultimo, were read" and u ‘ - 86ri!irmed. The chairman stated that since the last meeting' he fhacl received an application from the master,' asking that his kitchen garden might be enlarged, and which he recommended the Committee, to, grant, subject-to the Board' of Ed libation sanctioning the expenditure. He also recommended the trimming of the gorse fence round the school site, and that a letter-box and a set of pigeon-holes be 1 provided fot the post office, by subscription. The Committee requested the chaiiman to write to the Board of Education to apply for funds for the necessaxy cost of the fencing required to enlarge the school garden, and‘further to disburse the outstanding accounts for school books, etc. The Committee also desired the Chairman to see Messrs. Sealy Bros., and request them to carry out their contract of planting the school site at once. The correspondence was next read, and accounts were passed to the amount of Ll 3 7s. 6d., after which the Committee adjourned to Wednesday, the Gth October, The By-laws Threatened AGAtN..toYesterday ' Sergeant Felton, scored a point against tbe ! '-redoubtable Mr. O’Reilly. Before the Court opened, Mr. O’Reilly, who had charge of the defence of a case, enquired of the. Sergeant when it was likely to come off.' Finding from the answer that he had just time to ride up to the station and meet the incoming train before his client, would require his services, Mr. O’Reilly hurried round to where his Arab was tethered—“ to horse, and away.” Time pressed him, and instead of keeping the shingled road, he crossed the footpath, took the unauthorised track across the unoccupied sections in front of the Templar Hall, joining the road again at Robb and Burns’ smithy, and there again crossing the footpath, to the provisions of the by-laws. Gn hjs from the station he found a Constable wajtpjg jfpj? him, with a: summons to answer for the pffenaa he had just committed, and he was* cooseqjqehtty in anything but the moat amiable frame of mind when he stood up to defend, the bailiff from a similar charge. The sum-..', mons he had just received had a tendency to become the subject of his remarks more than the case he had in hand, which latter dismissed. When his own case came pn iqr hearing Mf, O’Reilly was sevei’e on the ‘ ‘blach'-’mail’ ,r tljpsp by.-lays levied, and he intimated his ’intpjjxjph Rf tp upset thgra; He; was sjpart practice of tjxc Sergeant, tod, hut Mr. Purnell told liim that cases pf this sort were like having a tooth out—the sooner the job was done the better. Anyhow, that unfortunate ride across to the smithy will test the stability of .the by-laws, Mr. Crisp’s powers as a law-maker, Mr. Purnell's or Mr. Branson’s powers of defence, and the potent artillery of Mr. O’Reilly’s power of attack,

Shocking Occurrence. — At half-past nine o’clock on Thursday a lad named Lewis Wallace, aged sixteen years, a in Queen street, Sydenham, was admitted to the Christchurch Hospital, comatose state, supposed to be th’6 : - ! result of drinking the greater part of ’a bottle of brandy. It appears that Wallace and two others obtained possession of the brandy on Wednesday night, and ho drank himself into an unconscious state. As ho did not recover'during the day, he was taken to the hospital, where he died yesterday, aaofnmg.- The police ammiquiring into the circumstances under which the brandy was obtained, ■ ''Ashburton Cricket Club.- —A meet-’ ing of the Cricket Club was held last evening, in the County Council Chambers. There was n fair attendance j«f -members, and Mr.i G, W. Andrews was voted to the chair, who briefly explained the object for which the meeting had boon called—namely, that of electing a Match Committee. The Chairman also referred tp the work which had been done recently for the Club. The ground had been sown and rolled, and the pavilion painted. . The following gentlemen, along . with the Captain ■ (Mr, G. W. Andrews) aii.d.Secretary (Mr. A. Fooks), were then elected a Match Committee Messrs. -Westenra, Mainwaring, , Hodder, and Strangmari—three to form ' a quorum. ■After a long discussion, and a.,number of motions on the,subject had been put and lost, it-was decided that the colors of the Club'should be a white cap with piping. -The Treasurer ,Tilr. Douglas) reported tjiat'therc was a balance of about Ll 3 to the credit of the Club, a piece of intelligence which was highly appreciated by the.meeting.; :However, there are a considerable number of subscriptions yet to come in,., and as the Club will have to ’incur expenses to no inconsiderable ...amount in the purchase of material, &c;, it is to be hoped , the amounts due will soon be handed over to the Treasurer. We hear it is very probable that one of the first matches of the season will be against an eleven of the Dramatic Club, the latter appearing in costume. The present enthusiasm of the cricketing fraternity in Ashburton augurs well for a most successful season.

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The Ashburton Guardian, COUNTY AGRICULTURAL & SPORTING RECORDER. SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 4, 1880., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 148, 4 September 1880

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The Ashburton Guardian, COUNTY AGRICULTURAL & SPORTING RECORDER. SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 4, 1880. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 148, 4 September 1880

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