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[From Our Parliamentary Reporter.]

WELLINGTON, October 29. A' Close Shave. In ft perfunctory and half-hearted way the Minister ot Education yesterday moved the second reading of the Debts Recovery Limitation Bill, giving practically no reasons for his sponsorship of this “ Liberal” measure. The Bill, be explained, was designed to shorten the time > from six years to two within ‘ which actions for debt could bo brought. The second portion of the Bill attempted to solve a difficult question by providing that there should be no recovery of debts under £2O for goods sold. It was a matter for consideration whether the courts of law should be used so often by creditors to recover debts.—Opposition to the Bill was led by the Hon. Mr Qliver, who said that it proposed to upset the whole foundation upon which the trade of this country had been built up. The passage of the Bill would strike a 'most serious blow at the colony’s prosperity. If the principle that credit was a wrong thing were true it should apply to large as well as small debts. Holding these views he moved that the BUI be read a second time six months hence.—The Hon. Mr Shrimski characterised the measure as a dangerous one, and said that we seemed to be educating the, people to be dishonest.*— The Hon. Mr Scotland pointed out that in the case of bankruptcy the share of the-small trader would simply, go to swell the share of the large trader.— Tl.e Hon. T. Kelly supported the Bill, because it would be the means of bringing about cash payments for small accounts ; while the Hon. Mr Bolt, in taking the same view, thought that a three years’ limit would be a proper period.-—The Hoh, Mr Arkwright characterised the BiU as one of the most mischievous of measures, and said that by- its introduction the Government were going out of their way to make themselves unpopular and ridiculous. —The Hon. Mr Pinkerton supported the 'second reading, in order that a workable measure might be made of it in committee, and the Hon.'Mr Jones also supported it and denounced the credit system.—ln replying, the Minister of Education said that the courts were being misused in. the collection of debts, and the system required amendment and consideration.—A tie was the result of the' division, the voting being:— For the Second Reading (14).— Messrs Baillie, Barnicoat, Swanson, Smith, W, Kelly, Kerr, T. Kelly, Jones, Jenkinson, Harris, Beeves, Pinkerton, Bolt,-and W.'C. Walker. : JnOes (14). Messrs Reynolds, L. Walker, Richardson, Shrimski, Arkwright, Riga, Bonar, Stevens, Oliver, , -Johnston, Grace, Williams, Holmes, and Montgomeiy.

The Speaker; in accordance with parlumentarj usage, gave bin casting vote with tbe ayes, so as to advance the Bill a stage'.

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Bibliographic details

POLITICAL GOSSIP., Issue 10457, 29 October 1897

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POLITICAL GOSSIP. Issue 10457, 29 October 1897

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