The Ashburton Guardian, COUNTY AGRICULTURAL & SPORTING RECORDER TUESDAY, OCTOBER 5, 1880.
During the quarter that closed with September there was a very satisfactory increase in the revenue of the colony, and one that betokens a steadily, if not rapidly, returning prosperity. It is quite possible that the Colonial Treasurer put his estimate of the probable income for the year, at a lower figure than even the depressed times warranted, and took altogether too gloomy a view of the future, not being far sighted enough to see that an improvement was near at' hand. At all events his estimate appears to have been considerably under what has already been realised, and it is satisfactory to learn that the revenue is showing a very healthy upward inclination. The Wellington Evening Post , with the actual figures before it, goesinto calculations'on the subject, and finds that on Customs alone there is a clear surplus over the estimated income for the part of the financial year already gone It is also well satisfied that the improvement is not a spurt but a permanent advance. Stamps fell off last quarter, but this quarter have made up arrears and left a surplus, while a proportionate increase is manifest in all the colony’s other departments of revenue, with the single exception of railways. *At the beginning of the quarter there was a deficit looked for on railways of some £ 200,000, but this department has picked up so healthily that not more leeway is expected for the whole year than £ 35,000, This again will be made good by savings and reductions, rumors of which, and of a sweeping character, are heard on every side,' and we are told that numerous officers at present drawing high salaries have received notice, such notice to take effect from the Ist proximo. Amongst these are the two Commissioners, whose places will be filled by Mr. W. N. Blair, while other officers of high position will have to take their retiring allowance. It is not pleasant, of course, to have to part with men who have done good work for the colony in their time, but it is just as unpleasant to have to pay salaries that cannot be afforded, and the public are assured that the cutting down of expense now being practised is imperative. It is a course that is at present being followed in every department of the Civil Service, from the sweeper of the Court-house, whose monthly ss. has been reduced to 4s. 6d., to the Railway Commissioner, whose magnificent salary has been reduced to nil. While these reductions are being made to bring expenditure down to the level with income, it is satisfactory to learn that a general improvement is taking place in the whole revenues of the colony, and that there is every probability that Major Atkinson will meet the House with a nice nest egg over his calculations.