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THE LATE DECISION OF THE COURT OF APPEAL ON THE BLENHEIM IMPROVEMENT ACT.

The notice that recently appeared in the Examiner, of the important decision of the Court of Appeal in the abore case, was not so clear as it might hare been, as at the time the paragraph was written only a short notice of it had reaohed us. We are glad, therefore, to be able to give a more lengthened notice of the case taken from the Evening Post, although a more full report still wouldhavebeen desirable, givingthe opinion of each of the Judges : — " The judgment of the Court of Appeal pronounced two days ago in the case of James Sinclair, appellant, and John Bagg, respondent, is suggestive of many evils resulting from the careless and inefficient manner in "which, our rulers at the hands of the General Executive Government have allowed some of the most important functions of their office to remain unexercised and inoperative. Some time in the year 1866, the respondent in the above case obtained judgment against the now appellant, James Sinclair, in the District Court of Marlborough, for the sum of £92 95.8 d., amount of rate^ claimed by ( plaintiff, now the respondent, on behalf and as clerk of the Board of Works of the town of Blenheim. The rates were claimed under the Blenheim Town Improvement Act, 1864, for certain lands within the town of Blenheim, and were assessed according to their estimated value, under clauses 13 and 14 of the Act. The assessment, however, was made by two of the members of the Board appointed by the latter. The defendant, Sinclair, appealed against the decision of Mr. Ward, the Judge of the District Court of Marlborough, and a stated case was set[down for hearing before his Honor Mr. Justice Johnston, sitting in banco, some time in October, 1866 ; it was by consent referred to the Court of Appeal. The case was argued at the Bitting of lagtyear, and the Judges deferred judgment for twelve months, until this year's sitting, when, on the 24th instant, his Honor Mr. Justice Johnston stated that the Courtwas unanimously of opinion that judgment must be recorded for the appellant, Sinclair, and the decision of Mr. Ward reversed with costs. The points for the opinion of the Court were — Ist. Is the appointment of two of the members of the Board ai assessors a valid exercise of the powers of appointment under the Act? 2nd. Is the Blenheim Town Improvement Act, 1864, repugnant to the Constitution Act ? If so, is it void? 3rd. If the said Act is not void, is the assessment a valid and legal assessment ? — The acting Chief Justice very justly said that the questions involved were of considerable importance, and as there was a diversity of opinion among the Judges as to the ground on which judgment should be based, it had been considered advisable that the opinions of the different Judges should be pronounced separately. Here we have another example, unfortunately too common in this colony.'Oi the absurdities often attending too hasty legislation. The powers of enacting laws, given, by the Constitution Act to provincial bodies, instead of being kept in proper check and within due constitutional bounds by the Executive Council of the colony, have been in many instances much abused or interfered with in their free action. Very ityr if any of the provincial statute books could bear rigid looking into. The blame can only be laid at the door of the Governor's advisers, who from time to time caused his Excellency's asseut to b« given to or withheld from local enactments, the import of which they were totally innocent of, and whose regard for the ultimate results ot their indifference would perhaps be much decreased by the hopes that provincialism would at last succeed iv bringing itself to such a state of impracticability as to warrant its utter destruction." — Nelson JExawiner.

"1 shall cane you soundly," said the dominie.— " What for ?" inquired the delinquent — ' ' For being rude." — "You ought not to cane me soundly for that." — "Why?" — " Because it's contrary to the table of weights and measures." — "How so?" — " You would be making one rood aa ac7w." — " l'ou can. sit down," said the dominie. Never chase your own hit when it blows off in a gale of wind ; just staud still and you will presently s,ee half-a-dozen persons in pursuit of it. When one •has captured it, walk leisurely towa d him, receive it with a graceful acknowledgment, and replace it on your head ; he will invari ibly act as if you had done him a favour. Try it. ■ I 1 Mottoes fob am.. — A. vain man's motto is, " Win gold and wear it"— a generous man's, " Win gold and share it" — a miser's, " Win gold and spare it 1 ' — a profligate's, " Win gold and .spend it"— ,a broker's,, •• Win gold and lend it"— a fool's, '//Win gold and, end ft"— a, gambler's,, " Win gold and lose it"— a ' "Wingqldandwae.it;".' ' ( J

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http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/DSC18670820.2.17

Bibliographic details

THE LATE DECISION OF THE COURT OF APPEAL ON THE BLENHEIM IMPROVEMENT ACT., Daily Southern Cross, Volume XXIII, Issue 3147, 20 August 1867

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832

THE LATE DECISION OF THE COURT OF APPEAL ON THE BLENHEIM IMPROVEMENT ACT. Daily Southern Cross, Volume XXIII, Issue 3147, 20 August 1867

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