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PARLIAMENTARY., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 695, 22 July 1882
LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL. Friday, July 21. BILLS. The Wellington Harbor Board and the Corporations Land Act, 1870, Amendment Bill, and the Ashburton County Council Empowering Bill were read a second time. The Nelson College Act, 1858, Amendment Bill was read a third time without debate. MINING COMPANIES ACT, The Mining Companies Act, 1872, Amendment Bill was considered in committee, and reported with several small amendments. THE HON. Mil PHARAZYN. The committee which had inquired into Mr Pharazyn’s case reported recommending that they concurred with the opinions of the Judge and jury at the trial, that his Noting twice was an honest mistake, and recommended that he should be freed from all civil disabilities under which he is now laboring. The Council rose at 4.15.
I HOUSE OP REPRESENTATIVES. I """"■ ; Friday, July 21. 1 The House met at 2.30 p.m. • questions. Replying to various questions, it was i stated that the new railway station at Dunedin would be commenced as soon as i the first instalment of the goods shed was completed. —Government could not promise to alter the regulation so as to allow 10 per cent, duty payable on native leases to be paid yearly instead of in lump sum. —A sum would be placed on the estimates for lighting the Parliamentary buildings by electricity. AUCKLAND UNIVERSITY COLLEGE BILL. This Bill was read the second time. THE LAND BILL. Mr Bracken resumed the debate on the second reading of the Land Bill. _ He said, notwithstanding the adverse criticism to which the measure before the House had been subjected, he thought it was a cheering sign of the times to find a member of the party of retrogression possessing the courage to bring such a Bill forward. The nationalisation of the land was a question which was agitating the minds of soma of the leading thinkers of the present day, and, therefore, the subject was worthy the consideration of the House. The movement was looked upon by many persons as merely a wild theory which could not be put into practice. But when the idea of the steam engine and telegraph was first mooted those who believed in the potency of steam and electricity were regarded as idle dreamers and wild theorists. The mistake made by those who opposed the system of leasing arose from the belief that land was as much private property as a man’s hat or his coat. This was an exploded notion, for air, water and land were not the products of human toil, and therefore could not be regarded as the property of any individual. They were given for the use of all, and no man could claim them as his own. The State should never have parted with an- acre of the land, and even now it was not too late to resume possession of it. Some hem. members might be inclined to imagine thac it would be impossible for the State to get back the land, but if a man, who sots out on a jouimey discovers, when he has travelled a long distance, that ho has taken the wrong way, would it not be wiser for him to retrace his steps than proceed further on the road which takes him away from his desired goal. It was never too late to mend, and he held that the wisest policy even now would be to make an endeavor to ..regain that with which they had foolishly parted, taking care at the same time that no injustice should be done to those who had purchased landed properties. This scheme might be calleN revolutionary, and no doubt it was revolutionary, but what great reforms had over taken place in the world’s history tiiat wore not evolutionary.
Mr Fish said the measure was a most revolutionary one, and would create a system of landlordism of the worst type. Mr Fitz Gerald supported the Bill, which he considered JJwasjj a progressive
measure, and severely criticised the conduct of the late Premier in his speech against the measure. Mr Holmes said he would support the Bill, but had it been made a party question ho would have voted against it. He opposed the system of disposing of the land by auction, and would give his hearty support to the principles of leasing in the Bill. Mr Wynn Williams said the measure was an attempt to do a great benefit to the colony. This question should not be made a party question. He would support the Government which brought in a measure to atop the sale of lands. It was almost too late in the South Island, but it should be carried out, especially in the North Island, where much of the land had not been sold. He regretted what fell from Sir John Hall, and concurred entirely with the Bill, and hoped members would sink party feeling and help to carry the Bill. Mr Petrie congratulated the Minister of Lands on the introduction of the measure. Some members had pronounced it Utopian, but they had not considered it thoroughly. He would support the measure to his utmost to see it passed with some slight amendments. Mr Pearson congratulated the Minister on introducing the Bill, and regretted the Bill did not deal with all the Crown lands of the colony. Some reasonable objections had been taken to the Land Boards. He would support the Bill, Major Harris would in Committee make several alterations.
Mr O’Oallaghan considered the time would soon come when the State would not allow largo estates, as at present, to stand in the way of settlement.
Mr Seddon said this measure was dust thrown in the eyes of the public. He could not support the Bill, and thought the Government would, after a few days in Committee, drop the Bill. The Bill was not a liberal measure, or even intended to give the people of New Zealand the leasing system in its fullest extent. Mr Montgomery could not approve of the principle of the Bill, but would not retard its going into Committee. Mr Beetham bore testimony to the success of the deferred payment system. In the Wellington district payments were coming in slowly but surely. He would support the second reading, but would speak again on the Bill in Committee. Mr Swanson would heartily support iiio Bill, but would make slight alterations in Committee. He hoped the leasing clauses would be kept intact. He did not see that there could be any difficulty in getting in the rents, as was feared by some.
Mr J. B. White hoped the House would pass the second reading of the Bill. The Hon. Mr liolleston said this Bill would promote the settlement of the country, and would prevent large estates being created ; and if it had fair play, it would be a blessing to the country. The Bill was read a second time on the voices. The House adjourned at 1.20 a.m.
PARLIAMENTARY., Ashburton Guardian, Volume III, Issue 695, 22 July 1882
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