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THE LICENSING LAW.

During the session which is just over opportunity was found to effect some necessary Amendments of the Licensing Law, though by no means all the amendments which are either necessary or desirable. r J he first of these has reference to the position of married women as licensees — a question which cropped dp, it will be remembered, at the last annual licensing meeting m connection i with one ot the borough hotels, Prior to the parsing of the Bill of last session 1 no married woman could, under any circumstances, be the lawful holder of a | publican's license, and there have not \ Jraen wanting instances whiob. proved that r this was a rule which however good m ita [ intention, could not always he enforced . without manifest injustice, and, as a ) matter of fact, the Licensing Bench has ' on occasion shown its concurrence m that view by assisting m its circumven- \ tion — as for instance, by granting the i license to some other member of the 1 family, There are cases where the i 1 husband is an idle good-for-nothing | \ fellow, and where the wife is really the I head of the household and the provider ' for the fonnily> and when this so it is hard indeed that she should be prevented \ from earning thejr livelihood, and deprived, perhaps, of her only available 1 resource. This has been recognised by the Legislature, which at the instance of ' Mr Fish, member for Dunedin South, has passed a Bill intituled " The Licensing Act, 1881, Amendment Act, 1889," of ' which the following are the operative , clauses : — Clause 2 validates every transfer heretofore made by any Licensi ing Committee of auy license (except a 1 packet license, wholesale license, or con- , ditional license) from or to any married woman ; and clause 3 provides that every married wpman who is at present the holder of any license {other than of the above excepted descriptions) \b for the purposes of the Aot to be regarded as a feme sole, a term whioh is beet expressed by tbe vernacular i( on her 1 own hook," and therefore entitled to manage her own affairs. So far the Bill only deals with past transactions. As 1 to the future, it is provided that no married woman shall hold a license , except m cases where the wife has obtained an order under " The Married Women's Property Protection Act, 1880," m which event she is considered as a feme sole for the purpose of holding . a license under " The Licensing Act, I J881," and its amendments. l The other amendment of the law is ' that made at the instance of Major Steward and intituled "The Triennial Licensing Committees Act, 1889." This as its name implies provides tljat m ' the future Licensing Committees are to hold ofijee for a term of three years instead of being annually sleeted as at present. ' As, very properly, fho elections, are made contemporaneous with the recurrence of the local option polls, and as the next of these polls falls to be held m 1891 it follows that the first election of Triennial Committees, cannot take place till that year, and that the Committees elected m 1890 will hold offioe for one year only. The Act accordingly provides to that effect ; so that next year the Committees will be elected to serve one year only, and the Committees elected m the following year and every thiis year, thereafter will fee elepted to serve for three years. The change is one which has long been asked' for, not only m the interest of economy but' also In that of the better administration of the Licensing law. As regards the firsi of these considerations, it is sufficient to, state that by the substitution of one polling for four, which is the effect of the 9 — J ™t Was than $25,000 Act, a sum . . -•«« will be saved to the local goverun. & bodies m each triennial period, and as regards the second, it needs no argument to show the self-evident fact that Committees having a continuous term of office extending over three years will be m a position of power such as cannot be occupied by Committees which have to go out of office before the opportunity arrives of enforcing their own decisions. On all grounds the change is for the better, and altogether the results of the session m respect of the licensing laws have been much more [satisfactory than has been the| caiejji a J|respeot to most* other »»tt«i f

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18890921.2.14

Bibliographic details

THE LICENSING LAW., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2232, 21 September 1889

Word Count
753

THE LICENSING LAW. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2232, 21 September 1889

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