THE LIQUOR-LICENSE QUESTION.
1.0. G.T. GRAiND IiODGE RESOLU- •■ •■■ ■ :; ■ . '.;'•: -,-••; . .'At the annual session of the Grand Lodge of the 1.0. G.T. to-day, the following synopsis was given'of'the suggested Parliamentary measure:™ •■ , ~ 1. Dominion option by' majority vote :-' : - . on. general election . days. ; ■ 2. Wflien No-license:- carried , . and. re-affirmed at -the; succeeding Dominion option poll, "no further poll to be taken except upon' 'a ■resolution by amajority of all the ■members of Parliament following ,-..■ • upon a petition by -a substantial .' proportion of. the electors. . 3. Until Dominion Jfo-license is. carried the local option .vote to be taken on the day of the election of licensing committees; the majority to decide. • . - -■■• ■ 4. The reduction issue to be omitted from the local option voting paper, and reduction, to be made to depend on whether- or not a, committee pledged to reduction ie returned. • • ■••• \.' The report was adopted, and on the proposal of Mr. Walker the following resolution was adopted:—-"That the Grand Lodge would warmly support the adoption by the forthcoming .Dominion No-license Convention of the proposal's in relation to legislation and" propaganda in 'the report of its hon. Parliamentary agent, and commends to all the lodges of the Order the favourable consideration, cordial support, and public local advocacy of the said legislative proposals." The Eev. Edward. Walker, .honorary Parliamentary agent of . the Grand Lodge, presented his report. To it /was appended the drink bill of the Dominion for each of the past'two years, showing that for the year 1907 it amounted to £ 3.667,379, or £3 15s. 10d. per. head of the population, being an increase per head of 4s. Bd. on the previous year; and that for 1908 it amounted to £3,751,968 or £3 15s. s*d. per',head of population., being a decrease of per head on the previous year. There was also attached a table of the percentages of the No-license votes throughout the Dominion at the last poll, compared with those of previous polls. It showed that iii 46 of the 76 electorates in the Dominion licensee continued by the vote of the minority: that 12 were now under No-license; "and that in only 18 elec-t-orates was there a majority for license; that there is now a majority for No-license over the -whole Dominion, and also over each island; there was also appended a suggested manifesto temperance Parliamentary measure, to which the following reference was made in the report:— "His efforts ihad been, mainly directed to promoting the demand for majority rule in addition to all issues at licensing polls, and for the power of Dominion ac well ac local option. .He was strongly of opinion that much would be gained by submitting only one issue at a time, and so greatly simplifying the voting, and ■would suggest to the Order to demand that Dominion option be taken on general election days, and until Dominion No-license is carried, local .option oh licensing committee, election days; further, that the reduction iesue should be removed from the local option voting paper; "and inasmuch as section or , of the Licensing Act expressly provides ; that candidates for election are- not, disqualified by pledging themselves to any particular policy, the power to reduce licensee should be conferred on j every licensing committee, the actual exercise of that power being determined , by whether a committee is returned pledged to reduce or pledged not to reduce."
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