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PARLIAMENT.

[BT TELEGRAPH.— ASSOCIATION.] LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL. Tuesday. The Council met at half-past two p.m. FIRST HEADINGS. . The Protection of Homing Pigeons and the Cemetery Act Amendment Bills were read a first time. REFORM OF THE COUNCIL. Dr. Grace gave notice that on the second reading of the Legislative Council Reform Bill he would move, " That in the event of any radical change in the constitution ot the Council, it should be by election by the large electorates." RAILWAY WORKSHOPS. In reply to a question, the Minister for Education said the Minister for Railways was anxious to keep the workshops fully employed to keep pace with the demand for rolling stock. HOISTING GEAR. The Minister for Education said the question of having reliable tests made of the material used for hoisting on vessels would receive consideration. winding-up of COMPANIES. The second reading of the Companies Winding-up Bill was moved by the Minister for Education, and supported by Messrs. Reynolds, Shrimski, and LeeSmith. The latter dealt at great length with the methods of the liquidators in the Colonial Bank, the Ward Farmers' and the Guthrie companies, which, he said, had been of such a character as to call for an amendment in the law to prevent anything like a repetition of such scandals. The motion was agreed to on the voices. UNCLAIMED moneys. The Unclaimed Moneys Bill was read a second time after a brief debate. The Council rose at a-quarter past five.

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. Tuesday. The House met at half-past two. THE DEATH OF Mil. FRIEND. The Speaker announced the death of the Clerk of the House, Mr. Friend, who had passed away at half-past nine that morning. Mr. Friend, he said, had been in the service of the House for 35 years, first as Clerk-as-sistant, and then since 1889 as Clerk. In the latter year Mr. Friend had been appointed successor to Major Campbell, and had ever since proved himself to be a most capable and conscientious officer, on whom he (the Speaker) could always depend with the utmost confidence in connection with records and the other business of the House. On personal and public grounds, he, therefore, mourned the loss of the Highest official of the House, Mr. Friend, who had left a widow and only child, a daughter, to mourn his death. The Premier endorsed what the Speaker had said as to Mr. Friend's high personal character, and the value of his public services. As one of the oldest members of the House, he could say from personal experience and wide observation, that -Mr. Friend had ever been ready to help members with invaluable advice and assistance. He moved, " That the House desires to place on record its high sense of the faithful services rendered to the House of Representatives during 35 years by George Friend, first as Clerkassistant and then as Clerk of the House, and respectfully tenders to his family an assurance of its sympathy with them in their irreparable loss.' Air. Rollestox seconded the motion in feeling terms, confirming what had been said by the Speaker and the Premier concerning the faithfulness and the valuo of Mr. Friend's services as the highest officer of Parliament. The motion was carriedOn the motion of the Premier the House at twenty minutes to turee adjourned till half- seven, out of respect to Mr. Friend's memory. The House resumed at half-past seven. THE TORT OF WELLINGTON. Mr. J. Hutcheson, as a matter of urgency, asked whether Sir Arthur Douglas was still shipping master at the port of Wellington. He went on to describe the case of six men belonging to a ship in the harbour who had been sent to gaol for seven days and fined two days' pay for complaining about their food as unfit for consumption. The men were all foreigners, and had there been, he said, a competent shipping master at the port their case could have been inquired into, and put in a right light. The Minister for Marine said the men 1 had been sent to gaol for disobeying orders, and the Collector of Customs had not made inquiry into the question of food because a complaint had not been made by the number required, namely, three men. The complaint, so far as it had gone, was only as to insufficiency of food. Sir Arthui Douglas was nut shipping master, and-a competent successor would be appointed to succeed Captain Bollans, who had recently become master of the Hinemoa.

THE I'UHI.IC TRUSTEE. Mr. Wasox said he had gone through the papers which the Premier had placed before him in reference to the charge recently made against the Public Trustee in connection with Departmental valuations. Having studied all the data he (Mr. Wasox) withdrew all imputations, and expressed regret for having made them.

MUNICIPAL FRANCHISE. The House went into committee on the Municipal Franchise Reform Bill. On a pro forma motion to report progress, the Premier said, in reference to the term " residential occupant," he, personally, was in favour of single occupancy as a sufficient qualification to vote, but the majority, he believed, were not prepared to agree to that step. As it stood, the Bill was a substantial advance, and he hoped it would be gone on with. As to the term, "sub-tenant," he had been advised by the member for Patea, and also by the law officers, that it was surplusage, but would again consult the Government's legal advisers on the subject. A sub-tenant holding from a tenant would not have a vote. Mr. Steward said that the matter might be placed in a satisfactory position by adding a new clause to the 'Bill, setting forth that a sub-tenant would be entitled to vote whether the sub-tenancy was held directly from the landlord or his tenant. Mr. J. Hutcheson said ho would like to see provision made for the head of every family having the municipal franchise. Clauses 10 and 11 were pissed. Mr. Taylor moved to strike out of subsection 1, clause 12, the proviso that a person with a residential qualification should not be entitled to vote at any poll relating to loans or rates.

On division the proviso was retained bv 49 to 14.

Mr. O'Regan moved to strike out the proviso that the Bill should not apply to the election of any member of a Harbour Board. The Premier said he personally, favoured the municipal franchise being applied to Harbour Board elections in cases where the Boards were national institutions, and had put in the proviso for prudential reasons. At the same time he would not be sorry if the proviso were struck out. The proviso was struck out on division by 35 to 27. On the motion of the Premier, a proviso was added to the sub-section of clause 12, making it necessary that a residential occupant shall have resided three months in a borough before being entitled to vote.

On division the Premier was, by 35 to 31, not allowed to withdraw the following clause to clause 12, of which he had given notice on Friday:—"Before allowing any person to vote in respect of the residential qualification, the returning officer may, if he thinks fit, and shall, if requested by any scrutineer, put to the intending voter the following questions:— Are you the person whose name appears as A.B. on the roll, by virtue of the residential qualification? (b) Are you now, and have you for the preceding six months, been in occupation, whether joint or several, of any house, warehouse, office, shop, or other building within the borough';" Mr. Smith moved to add to the sub-clause just inserted, "That if a person questioned fails to reply in the affirmative, he shall not be permitted to vote. If he answers falsely, he shall be liable to a penalty and his vote shall be void." The Premier said the insertion of this proviso would be a blot on the Bill, On division, Mr. Smith's motion was carried by 32 to 31. Mr. Moore moved to add to clause 13 a proviso to the effect that every ratepayer be entitled to votes as follows:— ratable property valued at not less than i £50, one vote; more than £50, and not less than £100, two votes; more than £100, and not less than £350, three votes. air. Moore's motion was negatived on division by 36 to 24. f < It was agreed that where the population was 3000 or less, the Council shall have the' power to fix the number of polling places.. '

A long discussion took place on the clause empowering the Goveraor-in-Council to make regulations under the Act. Mr. McGuike moved that the clause be struck out. The clause was retained with a proviso added at the suggestion of the Premier, to the effect that regulations be placed on the table of the House within two days of the opening of ParliamentA motion that the clause pass as amended was carried on division by 35 to 20. New clauses were added to the effect that the returningofficer should question a freehold elector as well as residential occupant as to identity, and that persons occupying only a portion of premiss should be entitled to the franchise. Mr. Hogg moved a new proviso that in case of a husband and wife, any qualification possessed by one of them, whether under this Act, or the principal Act, shall be deemed possessed by each of them. This was carried, and the Bill was reported with amendments. ADVANCES TO SETTLERS. The Government Advances to Settlers Act Amendment Bill, to give the Government authority to borrow up till October 31, 1901, a million and a-half already authorised by the Act of 1894, was taken in Committee. House left sitting at two a.m.

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Permanent link to this item

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Bibliographic details

PARLIAMENT., New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXV, Issue 10810, 20 July 1898

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1,627

PARLIAMENT. New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXV, Issue 10810, 20 July 1898

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