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HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Thursday, April 27. The Speaker informed the House, that he had received a letter from Sir Thomas Mostyn, ftating, that he did not intend to defend his return for the county of Flint against the allegations of a petition which had been presented, complaining of an undue return for the faid county. By the provision of the Act of the 28th of his present Majesty it was necessary that thirty days should elaps: between the notification of this letter in the Gazette, which would be on Saturday, and the day on which the question could come again before the House, and the Order for hearing the petition discharged.
The Master of the Rolls complained very much of the manner . in which the Honourable Baronet had caused this delay, when he must have known that the objections stated in the petition were well founded. · The letter being read, the order for hearing the petition was deferred to the first of June next.
SUPPLY Mr. Douglas brought up the Report of the Committee of Supply.
Mr. Fox asked the Minister how he made up the sum of 1,284,000l. out of the taxes, as he had stated their produce in round fums last night? for it appeared by the notes of several Gentlemen, that the sums he had stated fell short of that amount by a very considerable sum. He apprehended, therefore, that the Right Honourable Gentleman must have omitted to state something, or must have made a mistake in his calculation, a thing which certainly might have eafily happened in the multiplicity of items which he had to bring forward.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer restated the items and the sums at which he estimated them. He stated Bills of Exchange at 40,000l. and insurance from fire at 35,000l.---(These he omitted to state by accident last night, but which, together with 10,0001. under stated on the articles of copies of deeds, makes up the whole sum of 834,000l. exclusive of tolls, &c. .
The resolution for making an advance by way of Loan, of 200,000l. for the service of the Emperor being read a first and second time, and the question put upon it, was carried without a division.
Mr. Douglas then brought up the report of the Committee of Ways and Means.
The resolutions were all read over.
On the Motion being made that the resolutions be read a fecond time, Mr. Fox restated the objections which he had started the preceding night against the financial statements of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, which were calculated to delude the country, by representing to the public that he had provided a greater sum of interest than the taxes would produce. He in. fifted that there was 248,000l. of deficiency even for defraying the interest of the funded debt, and that the interest of three millions and a half of floating navy debt remained entirely unprovided for. He also contended, that the estimate fell far short of the expences which were likely to be incurred, reasoning from the expences of the several services in past years.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer replied, that it was impofs sible to be accurate in forming estimates of future services, but that they had been as accurate in the present as in any former war. There might be some defalcations, and there might be a surplus; the question was, therefore, whether further imposts should be laid on the country in a case where it was matter of uncertainty whether or not they would be necessary. He denied that a defalcation could exist to the amount stated by Mr. Fox, and endeavoured to support his allegation by a statěment of the produce of the taxes which had been already imposed.
Mr. W. Smith contended that there would be a deficiency of one million after the Princess Royal's portion was paid, the ad. vances were made to the sailors, and a bonus was given to the subscribers to the Loyalty Loan.
The resolutions were read a second time, agreed to, and bills ordered to be brought in pursuant thereto. Adjourned.
HOUSE OF LORDS.
Friday, April 28. The Earl of Chatham brought up the Report of the Committee of Secresy, which was laid on the Table, and ordered to be printed. Adjourned.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Friday, April 28. There being only 37 Members on the list, instead of 40, they could not make a ballot for a Committee to try the merits of the Petition against the election for the County of Kent, which being the first Order of the Day, the Speaker adjourned the House, without doing any business.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Saturday, April 29. · The Chancellor of the Exchequer presented the following Message from his Majesty : . . . .
« GEORGER. “ His Majesty recommends it to the House of Commons to confider of enabling his Majesty to make remittances from time to time, to be applied to his service in Ireland, in such manner as shall be approved by the Parliament of that kingdom, to an amount not exceeding 1,500,000l. on provision being made by the Parliament of Ireland for discharging the interest and charges of a Loan to that amount.
" And his Majesty recommends it to the House to consider of guaranteeing a Loan on account of his Ally, the Emperor, to be applied in making good the advances to the amount of 1,600,000l. which have already been made to his Imperial Majesty, and to defray the charge of such further advances as his Majesty may, from time to time, direct to be made in the course of the present year, to an amount not exceeding 2,000,000l.
« His Majesty trusts that he shall experience the ready concurrence of his faithful Commons, at this important conjuncture, in a measure calculated to enable the Emperor the more effectuaily to continue his exertions for the support of the common cause, and for the attainment of a general peace, on secure and equitable terms.
" And his Majesty relies on the zeal and affection of his faithful Commons to provide for enabling his Majesty to defray such other extraordinary expences as may be necessary for the public service, and to take such measures as the exigences of affairs may require.
6. Ĝ. R.” On the Message being read by the Speaker, the Chancellor of the Exchequer moved, that it be taken into consideration on Monday, May ift.
The names of the Members chosen by ballot to be a Committee to try the merits of the contested election for the County of Kent, were as follows:
Wm. Macdowall, Esq. CHAIRMAN.
Hon. Lionel Damer,
Sir Wm. Johnstone, Bart.
HOUSE OF COMMONS.
Monday, May 1. Colonel Gascoyne moved for leave to bring in a Bill'for regu; lating pilots in the port of Liverpool. Granted. And Colone Gascoyne and General Tarleton were directed to prepare it.
A new writ was ordered for the County of Kinkardine, in the room of Robert Barclay, who has accepted an office under Government.
Mr. Grey brought up a Petition from the Distillers of the Low Lands of Scotland, stating the hardships under which they laboured, and praying relief, &c. which, after a few words from the Chancellor of the Exchequer, who stated something of the kind prayed for was in agitation already, and a few words from Mr. Grey, was brought up and ordered to be laid on the
Tablę. · Mr. St. John moved, “ That there be laid before the House, " an account of all bills drawn since the commencement of the “ war on the Treasury from St. Domingo, to the latest period it u can be made up."---Ordered.
KING'S MESSAGE. The Chancellor of the Exchequer moved the Order of the Day on the Message from his Majesty.
The Message was then read, and referred to a Committee of Supply, as was also the Report of the Committee of Secresy. . On the question being put that the Speaker should leave the Chair,
Mr. Fox said, he did not mean to oppose that motion, but he wished to have an answer to a question before the House proceeded to the business now before it. When we were hearing every day of what had passed at Portsmouth, it was necessary to know something in that House officially upon that subject. The necessary arrangements which will take place in consequence of the late events, muft create very considerable expence, for which Parliament must provide. That was an expence, in one point of view, of confiderable importance. But in another point of view the matter was of more importance than any confideration of the expence could be. It had in that view created more uneasiness in the mind of every thinking man in this country, than he chused at this moment to express. He had, therefore, on a former day asked, when it was proba'sle that official information should come before the House; that question was then answered in a general way, by an intimation that a communication would be made to the House as soon as possible: since which a considerable time had elapsed, and no communication has been made.--He was therefore under the neceslity of repeating his question.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer said, that in the course of a day or two a sum of money would be proposed to be voted by Parliament upon the subject alluded to by the Right Honourable Gentleman.
COMMITTEE OF SUPPLY. The Speaker left the Chair, and the House resolved itself into a Çommittee of the whole House.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer.- One part of his Majesty's Message recommends it to this house to conlider of enabling his
Majesty to make remittances from time to time, to be applied to his service of Ireland. The other part is an application from his Majesty to this House, to enable his Majesty to make advances to the Emperor from time to time in the present year, as well as to make provision for the advances which have been already made to his Imperial Majesty. The former of those comes under the Vote of Credit. I will not trouble the Committee with any observations on that part which respects the aid to Ireland, because I am apprehensive that upon that part of the subject there is no variety of opinion. But the other part of it is such, that I cannot, even in this conjuncture, hope that there is no difference of opinion. From what I have heard on a former day, when this subject was incidentally mentioned, I cannot say I am sanguine enough to trust that the Committee will be entirely unanimous. I am aware that the motion which I thall conclude with will be objected to; but untii I hear the objections, I shall content myself with stating very shortly the nature of the question which is now before the Committee; which I shall not detaia by imagining to them arguments in favour of the general policy of our endeavouring, while the war continues, to avail ourselves of the allistance and co-operation of the Emperor, and of the propriety of our granting to him a pecuniary luccour in the performance of that service, to enable him to continue it.
“ There was a period, in the prelent Session, in which there was a general, and almost universal concurrence in this point--That there would be nothing more defirable on our part than that of having the vigorous co-operation of his Imperial Majeły in the prosecution of the present contest, in order to bring it to a conclusion as favourable to us as possible, which we can. not rationally hope for unless we afford to his Imperial Majesty pecuniary aid. This is a topic which has already undergone so much difcuffion, that it is hardly poffible for me to advance any thing new upon it. Indeed I can do no more than remind the House of what it has exprefled already by its votes upon that fubject. It is admitted by those who were unfriendly to the system of subsidising the Emperor, that in a general view of prudence and policy, it might be proper to afford pecuniary assistance to the Emperor, as long as that asistance would procure such a diverlion to the Armies of the Enemy on the continent, as would prevent their whole force from being concentrated in such a way as to threaten the safety of this country; and of the prudence and policy of this there is hardly any difference of opinion. The only difference of opinion arise from considering how far, under the circumstances of the case, any inconvenience which this country might feel, in consequence of remittances abraod, would counteract the advantage to be obtained by such remittances,