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[Fkoji Oub Pabuamentaby Reporter. | WELLINGTON, August 17. Hcliolarsblp Regulations. The Minister of Education has at last agreed to the alteration of the scholarship regulations, so that pupils attending country schools will not for the future compete with those from the city schools, who have special advantages in the way of training. This decision will give very general satisfaction to country schoolmasters, who will doubtless have more heart than formerly in undertaking the preparation of children who arc intending competitors in the scholarship examinations, August 10. Mr Fergus Hoes Not Retire. Duii' g the latter part of last week it was repotted in the lobbies that important Ministerial changes were pending, and that the Hon. Mr Fergus, owing to the press of private business engagements, had determined on retiring from office. The rumor wont even further, and associated fir John Hall or Ur Downic Stewart with the vacant portfolio. Having inquired into the matter at the proper quarter, ami being assured that no such change was intended, I refrained from giving publicity to the story; bub finding that it has been circulated through the medium of other correspondents, and is seriously stated by the ‘ Ntw Zealand Times ’ to day, I desiro to state that, though the Minister of Defence did have thoughts of relinquishing office, owing to private business engagements, the idea has been abandoned for soma days. My own conviction is that, though possibly there may ba some rearrangemeet of portfolios during the recess, there will be no change in the personnel of the Cabinet till after the general election has taken place. The I’remler TuttHiff his Foot I)-Tin. I understand that the Government have determined that their main public works proposals must be passed by the House or that members must take the responsibility of stopping all pu’o! : c works in the colony. In which case an aopeal to the country would prolubly ensue. The works which are considered v.tal to their poliev arc the Otago Central Kailway, the Puhipuhi Tramway, the North Trunir line, the acquiring of Native lands, the Oxford-Rotorua extension, and the Beiensville northwards. A Curious Memorial. Several of the Auckland members have received communications from an anonymous writer, signing herself “a broken-hearted mother,” in which they are urged to take steps to have marriage with a deceased husband’s brother legalised. The facts are these: 7he writer’s daughter lost her husband, and has since been cohabiting with bis brother, to whom she has borne children. Legislators say that though marriage with a deceased wife’s sister is the law of the land, they are powerless to interfere in such a case as that. The New Judge. Mr Justice Conolly will be sworn in at Nelson on Friday next, before Judge Richmond, when en route to Auckland, where he will arrive on Sunday, and enter upon his judicial duties at ence. Personal. Mr Hannay, one of the Railway Commissioners, starts to-day on a trip to the South, to review th- general arrangements of the railways between Dunedin and Invercargill. Judicial. The position of second Resident Magistrate of Wellington has been conferred upon Mr C. C. Graham. T'io Governor has telegraphed that Mr Graham’s commission has already _ been s’gned, so that he can enter upon his duties at once if need be. The arrangement is that he shall only act in the absence or indisposition of Mr Robinson, the senior Resident Magistrate. For the last six years Mr Graham has filled the office of Official Assignee in Bankruptcy, and will continue to do so, the new office being a purely honorary one. A Mystery Cleared I p. Verily, the ways of the collectors of cable news are mysterious. On inquiry from the Railway Department I learn that there is not the slightest foundation for the statement made in thin morning’s budget that Mr Maxwell, one of the Railway Commissioners, had accepted an 'nvitation to attend the Railway Congress which is to he held at Paris next month. It is true that the Government were invited to send a delegate, and the idea of sending one of the Commissioners was entertained. On reference to the Railway Board, however, it was found that no member of the Board could be spared at the present time, and they suggested that Mr John Blackett, the consulting engineer to the colony, should be authorised to attend the Conference. This arrangement has been duly carried nut, ar.d Mr Blackett will represent New Zealand. It should be mentioned that the gathering is one which is held annually by the railway authorities of Europe, and is similar to the Congress held at Milan t wo years ago, which Mr Maxwell attended. The Property Tax. Several members are urging on the Government the desirability of allowing the Property Assessment Amendment Bill to drop to the foot of the Order Paper and to bo lost sight of, thus getting rid of a difficult question. The proposed exemption of machinery is verv unfavorably received, and there is no clamor for any alteration in the incidence of taxation. The Government have decided to put the "Property Assessment IBVII down tlie Order Paper, bnt the only difficulty iu the way is dealing with Mr Harkness, a pledge having been given to him by the Premier that an oppor'unity should be afforded him of moving his amendment I hear that it was Mr Ballanco’s intention tr move to-night to exempt all agriculture, machinery up to L.3,000 from the Property Tax This would of course be another no-confidenci motion. The Opposition will, however, bo solt 1 on finding that the Bill has dropped down th( Order Paper, and will be so incensed that i direct challenge to the Government may nol improbably be tabled. On Leave. Mr Mills leaves for the South for a few day: by the Waihora, and has placed his pair in th< hands of the Government whip. The Clirlstlc-Waril Committee. Judge Ward was to-day examined athngtl before the Legislative Council’s Committee who will merely report on the evidence taken and not as to who is in the wrong in the disputi which has occurred.

He is a “rash” man who will go into company when he has the erysipelas.

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POLITICAL GOSSIP., Issue 7989, 19 August 1889

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POLITICAL GOSSIP. Issue 7989, 19 August 1889

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