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taze wholly upon Landed properears purchaecu
be 39 years, and the rate of purchase will thus vary one year wiin every variation of two and a half per cent, in the price of ftock. From this statement of the comparative purchase of the lock and tax, it is evident that the public gains one-fifth of the purchale by the transfer of stock.
" As far as the landholder is concerned, the question then is, whether 20 years purchase will present a sufficient inducement to redeem, and whether 20 years be a fufficient advan. tage for what he parts with at 17 years purchase. This reits wholly upon the supposed difference between landed and funded security. Landed property in general throughout the Kingdom fells at from 28 to 30 years purchase; funded at present from 16 to 17. We are giving landed security for funded, and at the rate of 20 years purchase. At this rate the share of advantage to the public is finall, to the individual it is very conliderable, if the advantage purchased is considered of the Lame description as landed property. I do not say, however, that it is exactly of the fame description as landed property; they are to be distinguished by their respective advantages and disadvantages. The benefit to the purchaser by redemption is « less valuable than landed property in this respect; it is dry and unimproveable possession. Land, however, is improveable, and it felis not only on its present value, but on the calculation of progressive improvement and speculative advantage. Other temptations to the purchase of land are command, influence, amulement, pleasure, occupation according to the temper and dilposition of the purchaser. It cannot be laid, however, that the purchase of this benefit is rendered more valuable by any of these advantages. It should be recollected, at the same time, that the purchase of the tax, if not absolutely the acquisition of enjoyment---if not a freedom from vexation, is freedom from Something which a man would wish to be without. It has this advantage too, that if not susceptible of improvement, it is attended with no risk. The purchaser is exempted from the care of management and the trouble of collection, and taking all the advantages and disadvantages together, it may be considered as a purchale of a very desirable nature. While the owner is thus induced to become the purchaser, the public, as we have seen, derives a very considerable benefit from the transaction.
“The next part of the plan is to give a facility to the posses. lor of land allo to become a purchaler. For this purpose it is intended to give the tenant for life or in tail, the same power to raise money by burdening the property as the proprietor in fee, provided, however, that the money so railed shall be ltrictly applied to the purchase of the tax. It is even intended to allow them to give a rent charge upon the property to the amount if convenient, to increase the facility of the posledior becoming the purchaser. It is likewise proposed to give the proprietors of fertled estates power to feil such a portion of the estate as shall enable them to pay off the purchate of the tax, providing that the money shall be strictly applied for that purpose.
“Giving there facilities to the possessor to become the purchaser in the first instance, it appears necessary to fix a certain period, after which, if they decline, third parties may buy.
To these the terms shall be the same as to the owners. Landholders, however, are to have this superior advantage, that five years shall be allowed for the payment of the instalments. But if they do not pay the whole in ready money at first, they shall be obliged to pay a small interest for the fum remaining unpaid, in order to compensate to the public for the non-payment of the whole immediately upon the contract being made. With respect to third persons purchaling, I have already said that I shall propose the same terms for them as for the land owners, varying, as has been feated to the Committee, according to the price of the funds, and always yielding one-fifth more to the revenue than the present amount of the Land Tax. To these third persons, I shall filggest that one year only fhall be allowed for the paying off the instalments.
* It is necessary, therefore, in order to call the means of refource thus furnished into action, to take third parties where the landholders decline. That the situation of such third parties may not be too precarious, and that they may not be too easily divested of the property they have acquired, some provisions must be adopted by which they may be secured, and at the same time the power of redemption preserved to the original owner. It is difficult exactly to say what medium will balance the right to be given to these two parties, which will present to the monied inen the temptation to buy and reserve to the owner the power of redemption. The monied man must be induced to purchase by the difference which he supposes to exist between funded and landed property. This difference is greater or less according as the times are critical or tranquil. Land does not vary in time of war in the same proportion as funded property. We may therefore conclude, that those who engage in such a speculation do it with a view to a period of war more than to any permanent motive. My object, Sir, is, where a third person purchases, that the land owners shall not be allowed to repurchase till the period when the monied man shall be supposed to have the least objection to return to stock, and the land owner the greateit facility of borrowing money. This period will be then at the happy moment when having surmounred the difficulties
with which we have to struggle, and triumphed in the contest in which we are engaged; the consolidated fund shall have attained its maximuin, and being no longer allowed to accumulate ac compound interest, the dividends íhall be made applicable by Parliament. This will be when the confolidated fund shall be 4,200,000l. Suppofing then that, by the exertions which we have made and continue to ma's, we 1hould go through the dithculties we have to encounter, and pass with lucceís through this crilis of our fate, when the public debt ihall be met by the consolidated fund, there must be an end of all doubt of pub. lic credit; there must be an end of all question of national securities; of all distinction between landed and funded property. That moment then, when least discouraging for the monied man to revert to the funded security, it all be fixed for the owner to avail himself of that redemption which circumitauc:s had at first made impossible. If not redeemed within a given time, however, it becomes material to render the property permanent with the purchaser, to the exclusion of the owner. Thiee years, then, after the expiring of the so years, at the close of which the power of redemption is permitted to the owner, seems to be a fair extension of the privilege. It would give to the owner an opportunity to purchalę, of which, from his circumstances, he was unable to avail himself on the hirit offer. It will give him time for preparation for domestic arrangements, and for raising the necessary funds.
“On the other hand, the lituation of the monied man will be this: that by a small facrifice he will obtain, in a period of difficulty and pressure, a landed instead of a funded security. Provilions are made to secure to each the advantages which he will be most likely to prefer.
“ In the tranfaction, the situation of the monied man is percisely this. During a period of difficulty and danger, he has got a landed security instead of that of the funds. This case, however, will require two regulations ; first, that if any perlon, not the owner, has purchased by the transfering of an annuity, he shall be repaid the same quantity of stock upon the redemption, which he had transferred without regard to the price of such Ttock. Thus, fuppofing he had transferred to the public in payment when ftock was at 50, and in the Interval it should rise to 75, he will derive all the advantage from the rii, and may thus realize fifty per cent. upon his capital. At the same time he is to have no risk in case of a depreciation of the funds. Should they fall below fifty, he is to be reimbursed to the extent of the difference. The fituation of the stockholder who becomes a purchaser of the tax is precifey this, that he is fpeculating upon a rise, without any hazard of loss from depreciation.
's I have « I have stated these points to fhew the general tendency of the measure. It will now be seen that it is liable to no generai objections which do not admit of a remedy ; that the difficulties in the detail are not such as to impede its progress ; that the advantage to the public is considerable, and the bene. fit accruing to the individual such as will render it an object for him to purchase. While the monied man is induced to come forward to a list the State by purchasing the tax, a remedy is reserved to the owner, to enable him, at a fixed period, to repair the disappointment he may have sustained from his original inability.
« A variety of details must be involved in a measure like the present, but there are none which appear to be attended with great difficulty. On the present plan of repartition the amount of particular districts remains unaltered, thoug's it may vary within the district, with the improvement or decline of the various parts. In the metropolis and confiderable towns · this is particularly the case. In the parish of Mary bone the extensive improvement has rendered the repartition lighter, while in other districts it may become heavier from an opposite cause. Provision, therefore, must be made for the fituation of an owner purchasing in the different cales of increase or de. cline.
« These are the circumstances of the case which I have to lay before the House, and which I have conveyed in as short a ftatement as I was able. The object is one which requires confideration. In the first opening of the matter, I avoided going into any minute detail, and although I feel it a matter of propriety in the outline, and such as deserves at least a favourable hearing; yet I wilh it to be examined carefully, weighed dilpailionately and deliberately, and that Parliament may confider whether it is not such a measure as they ought in their wil dom to adopt at this arduous moment? I Thall follow the praccice I have observed in other instances with respect to the form of proceeding; that of moving the first resolution, and afterwards all the others in point of form, and then postpone the consideration of the subítance of the plan to another day. I fhall propole taking the opinion of the Committee on Wednesday next; for the resolution will be printed and ready to be delivered co-morrow. I shall propofe taking the opinion of che House upon them on Thursday following; and then that the whole subject shall go over until after the Hollidays, in order that Gentlemen may take them into the country, have an opportunity of conversing with their constituents, and learning whether any local circumstances may, in any case, render any alteration neceffary. I shall now, without any further
trouble to the Committee, move the first Resolution ; but perhaps the Committee may with to hear a statement of the heads of the Refolutions, which I shall therefore take the liberty to real."
The Chancellor of the Exchequer then read the Resolutions as follows.
“ That it is the opinion of this Committee, that the several and respective sums of money charged by virtue of an act of the present Seffion of Parliament, entitled, “An act for granting an aid !o his Majelty by a land-tax for the service of the year 1798,' on the respective counties and places in that part of Great Britain called England, in respect of the premises in the said act mentionei, lying within the same counties and places respectively, to be raised, levied, and paid unto his Majesty, within the space of one year from the 25th of March 1798, shall from and after the expiration of the said term, continue, and be raised, levied, and paid vearly, to his Majesty, his heirs, and successors, from and after the 25th of March in every year, for ever: subject, nevertheless to the rules, regulations, restrictions, and conditions of redemption to be prescribed. 'n That it is the opinion of this Committee, that it shall be lawful for commisioners to be appointed for the purpose to contract and agree with all and every person or persons, bodies politic and corporate, having or holding any manors, messuages, or tenements for the redemption of the land-tax charged upon their respective Aladors, messuages, or tenements, according to the assessment and pound rate to be made in pursuance of the said act, and that the confideration to be given for such redemption shall be so much capital lock of public annuities, transferable at the Bank of England, bearing an interest after the rate of 31. per cent. per ann. commonly called the 3 per cent, consolidated annuities, and the 3 per cent, reiuced annuities, as will yield an annuity or dividend, ex. Ceeding the amount of the land-tax fo to be redeemed by one-fifth part thereof; such capital stock to be transferred to the commifli. oners for the reduction of the national debt within the period of bre years from the
by four inftalments in cvery year, viz. on the ift of May, the ift of August, the ift of November, and the ist of February in each year: the first instal. ment to be made on such of the said day's as shall next ensue after the entering into such contract; but with liberty to any person to kipulate with the said commillioners, for the transfer of the whole of the said capital ttock at one time, or within a less period than fre years, so that the same may be made by even inftalments, at equal intervals between the period agreed upon, and by not less than four inftalments in each year of the said period. .
“That it is the opinion of this Committee, that all bodies pobric, corporate, or collegiate, corporations aggregate or fole, and and guilds, myiteries, fraternities or brotherhoods, and all trustees or feoffees in truit for charities or other public purposes, having any estate or interest in any such manors, messuages, or tenements, whatever may be their eftáte' or interest therein (other than tenants No: 21.