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POLITICAL GOSSIP., Issue 7995, 26 August 1889
[Fbom Ocb Pabuamentaby Rbpobteb.] 1 WELLINGTON, August 26. « The Otago Central. ' Ministers are in Cabinet this forenoon ; considering the propriety of introducing a short Bill providing for the further con- j struction beyond Middlemarch on the Otago Central Railway, together with a proposal for carrying on the North of Auckland Railway. The Cabinet have decided not to propose any new railway works, taking Thursday night's vote as an indication to that effect. The Otago Central will be carried on to Middlemarch, the vote under the ordinary Public Works Estimates for L 40.000, with L23.oooliabilities, providing for that; and next year the Government will again make proposals for its extension, and will then doubtless make the question a Ministerial one, A meeting of tho Otago Central supporters has been convened by Mr Pyke for four o'clock this afternoon. Electoral Reform. All the electoral Bills now before the House are to be dropped, with the exception of the Registration of Electors Bill, which the Colonial Secretary insists on proceeding with. Friendly Societies. It has been definitely determined to set up during the recess a commission to inquire into the working of friendly societies. The following names have been suggested to me as likely members :—Mr Williams (Wellington) and Mr Naphtali (Napier) as representing the Independent Order of Oddfellows ; Messrs Sligo, Black, and Robin (Dunedin), representing the Manchester Unity. Mr Fish, as a member of Parliament who has taken a great interest in the question, and Sir Robert Stout, whose legal knowledge would be of vast service in the way of conducting the examination of witnesses, are Certain to be asked to act on the commission. Mr Frankly n, Government Actuary, will either be a witness or a member of the commission. What Parliament Has Yet to Do. The Premier will to-night make a statement to the effect that the following measures must be proceeded with this session:— Selectors' Land Revaluation, Savings Bank Amendment, Wi Pere Grant, Public Works Amendment, North Island Trunk Railway Loan Application, and Registration of Electors Bills. An effort will be made to put through the Law of Libel Bill, but it is unlikely to be successful. The Government will introduce a Bill to make the Chinese Immigration Restriction Sill a permanent measure. The Ward-Hlsloii Affair. The Ward-Hislop Committee to-day examined Mr M'Donald (gaoler at Oatnaru) and Captain Hume, the former with respect to the relaxation of prison regulations in Christie's case, and the latter as to telegrams which had passed between the Colonial Secretary and the Prisons Department. The Colonial Secretary was also examined before the Ward-Hislop Committee to-day. Customs Duties. A deputation representing the various Chambers of Commerce will wait on the Premier to-morrow afternoon, protesting against the circular recently issued by the Customs Department as being' harassing to trade. The circular provides that in all oases of misdescription or error the matter must be submitted to Wellington instead of leaving discretionary powers with local Customs officers as hitherto. The End Approaching. Members are discussing the probabilities of the close of the session, and Thursday, the 12th prox., is mentioned as prorogation day.
POLITICAL GOSSIP., Issue 7995, 26 August 1889
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