« AnteriorContinuar »
ed, as, upon Mr. Burke's bill, the For the purpose of giving a con oath of a secretary of state, that centrated view of the financial prothe money issued was for fecret ceedings of the whole year, we services, effeétually secured the mi- fhall once more deviate from the nister from all responsibility, and order of time, and state the conprecluded all investigation. Here tents of the second budget, which Mr. Sheridan repeated what had was brought forward in the spring been observed before, that the last of 1797. parliament was not a meritorious On the 24th of April, when the parliament. He asked the minister house had resolved itself intó a what he bimself must have thought committee of supply, the chancelof that parliament, when out of lor of the exchequer observed, that the alarnists who had seceded from on that day he had barely to state, the ranks of opposition, he had sent that the heads of supply which were so many to thelter themselves from then to be voted were three : first, danger upon the higher ground, an additional fum towards defrayand to hide their heads in coronets ing the expences of the navy ; from the storm which they affected next, a sum to make good the to dread? Surely, if he had enter- charge on the growing produce of tained a very high opinion of those the consolidated fund for 1796 ; gentlemen, he would not have re- and, lastly, to make good the exmoved so many of them from the chequer bills which had been adscene of action.
vanced on the vote of credit of Mr. Wilberforce defended the 1796. The largest of these sums measure of sending money to the was for the navy. The money then emperor as advantageous and justi. voted for that service already afiable. Sir William Pulteney, on mounted to 7,600,cool.; besides the contrary, contended, that the which, the house would recollect, conduct of the minister ought to he had laid before them an estimate be marked with the distinct disap- of two millions and a half more probation of the house. Mr. Fox which was not then voted; the clofed this debate with an animated sum then which he had to call for, and forcible reply to all the ar. was not all to be considered as a guments which had been advanced new demand, since those two milon the ininifterial side of the house. lions and a half were to make a He took the imputation of hoftility part of it, and circumstances reto government, and to the parlia- quired a larger sum than had been ment that had fupported that go- estimated. The Cum therefore vernment, as a compliment paia to which he proposed to be voted was himself. He gloried in having been five millions, which, added to the hoftile to a parliament that tpent 7.600,cool. already granted, would above one hundred millions of mo. make the sum of 12,600,00ol. This ney in subjugating America, and supply was voted, allo 1,110,000l. in being boftile to the last parlia- to discharge the exchequer bills adment, who supported the ministers vanced on the vote of credit of in undertaking a war unnecellary the preceding year, and the fum and unprovoked.
of 2,177,000l. to make good the The house divided on Mr. 3,000,000l. charged in the precedBragge's amendment - Ayes 295 – ing teilion on the consolidated Noes 8s.
Mr. Pitt, on the 26th of April, of the navy unprovided for, to the brought forward his second budget. amount of four millions. The feWhile he regretted, he said, the ca. ket committee had estimated the lamities and expences with which navy fervices at 12,900,000l. which the present just and unavoidable was short of what he had stated war had been attended, he thought them to be. He had estimated a it his first duty to come forward floating navy debt of 1,500,000). with a firm and manly spirit, in the fele&t committee had supposed which he trusted the house and one of 3,000,000l. the country would concur with The next head of service was him, to convince the enemy that the army, for the service of which however great our pressure might there had been voted. the sum of be, we were determined to contend 10,913,000l. but on account of with them as long as we were able, some army expences being incurred rather than submit to haughty and in 1796, which then remained undihonourable terms. He observed, provided for, it became necesthat the very able and impartial sary to require the further sum of statements of the first report of the 3,387,000l. for the outstanding select committee of finance had arny debt. It is here to be obgreatly diminished the labour of served, that the extraordinaries of arranging the plan which he was the arms were now, for the first about to submit to the considera- time, brought forward by way of rion of the house.
estimate ; at leafi, they were never He then proceeded to ftate, with done fo fully till the present war, his usual precision, the amount of but they were paid out of the mothe sums already voted, and the niey granted for other services, leave sums remaining to be voted. The ing the provision for those services aggregate of his two budgets made deficient for another year. In adthe whole supplies for the year dition to this, there had been adamount to the enormous sum of vanced to the emperor, by way of 42,786,oool.; an annual expence loan (and which would be due unprecedented in the annals of from his imperial majesty to the finance.
public) 1,200,000l. and the sum of For the navy service of the cur- 900,cool. advanced to the merrent year there had already been chants of Grenada and St. Vincents, voted 7,661,000l. in addition to which would also be returned. which the committee of supply had, To the expences of ordnance he a few days before, voted 5,000,000l. made no addition to those itated in moçe. Although he estimated the the first budget. Under the head expences of the navy department of miscellaneous service there had at 7,661,000l. he bad at the same been voted already the sum of time stated his intention of pro- 378,00ol. and if he proceeded, he posing a further provision of said, by the estimate of the select 2,500,000l. in order to remedy an committee, the sum of 929,000l inconvenience which had arisen would be required instead. before, that he might thereby have The head of national debt was 10,161,000l. in cash, towards defray, not augmented by the fecond bud. ing any excess of navy debt. Such get. The sum to fupply the furhowever had been the extraordi- ther deficiencies of land and malt pary expences of the war, that there was 900,oool. above what was statthen reinained an unfunded debt ed in the firft budget.
Under the head of repayınents to
The last sum he alluded to was the bank, he proposed the sun the vote of credit to the amount of of 1,054,000l. and the fam of 3,000,000l. As 500,oool, had been 1,370,00 l, to discharge exchequer paid to the emperor, he wilhed to bills issued on the credit of the con be provided with the further sum folidated fund for 1796, and paid of 2,500,00ol. in order that further also by the bank.
advances might be made to him as The next sum was 1,110,000l. exigencies might require. for the discharge of navy and ex
Thus the minister went through chequer bills, raised by an act the whole of the supply, all the of the preceding session, upon a particular articles of which he obvote of credit in 1796
served it was not possible to calcuThe deficiency of the consoli. late foon enough to insert them in dated fund required the sum of the budget which he had opened be. 2,177,00ol.
fore Christmas. For the sake of perspicuity the following recapitulation of the whole supplies for the year 1797 is inserted.
- 12,661,000 Army
6,600,000 Army extraordinaries
3,387,000 Treasury bills and army warrants
2,088,000 Army extraordinaries for 1797
1,623,000 Ordnance, extraordinaries, and barracks
737,000 Miscellaneous service
929,000 Advances to the merchants of Grenada
600,000 Imperial loan
goo,000 Annual addition to the finking fund
200,000 Deficiency of land and malt
350,000 Repayment to the bank for advances to the consolidated fund
of 1795 Ditto for 1796
1,370,000 Further deficiencies of land and malt
900,000 Deficiency of the consolidated fund
2,177,000 To discharge exchequer bills issued on the credit of the consolidated fund for 1796
· 1,110,000 Vote of credit for 1797
Total of supplies £. 42,786,000
Mr. Pitt next stated the ways be borrowed, one million and a and means by which this large sum half was for the fifter kingdom of was to be raised. A loan of 18 Ireland, of which the interest was millions had already been voted, to be provided by the Irish parlia2,750,000l. for the land and malt, ment; another million and a half and 420,000l. for the surplus of was to be lent to the emperor, to grants for the year 1796. He ob- enable him to repay the million served, that of the 18 millions to and a half advanced by this coun
try. He proposed a further loan of his present struggle. The aggretwo millions, if fanctioned by pare gate of the ways and means in the liament, to afiit our faithful ally in iwo budgets was as follows:
. The land and malt.
2,750,000 Surplus of grants
420,000 Loyalty loan, according to the first budget
18,000 000 Lottery
200,000 Exchequer bills
3,000,000 Growing produce of the consolidated fund, by estimation
2,000,000 The part of the loan applied to Great Britain only
Total of ways and means for the year 1797 6. 42,870,000
He then stated the terms of the new loan of 18 millions as follows: For every 100l. subscribed, the subscriber was to have &
£ 125 of the 3 per cents. consols value 62 50 of the 3 per cents, reduced
25 20 of the 4 per cents.
16 ol. 6s. 6d. of the long annuities
Every 100l. subscribed, to have the value of £ 104 17
From hence, he said, there would payments upon the loan; the whole be a profit of 41. 175. for every bonus, therefore, would be 61 175. subscription of 100l. which, ex- per cent. to every subscriber when cept in a period of such difficulty the discounts for prompt payments as the present, was larger than he were taken in. should be willing to allow; but
The chancellor of the exchequer this was not the whole of the pro- next proceeded to what he called fit; there was a discount to be add. the unpleasant talk of enumerating ed, which he had felt it his duty to the new taxes he had to propose for make higher than usual. The com- raising the interest upon the several mon rate was three per cent.; he sums borrowed, of which the followa proposed to make it four per cent. ing is a summary statement. in order to encourage the prompt
6. The consolidated duties on stamps in general, doubled
320,000 Tax on property transferred by private contract, at 4d. per pound 170,000 Copies of deeds to be given in evidence to be stampt
40,000 On the probates of wills above the sum of 300l.
40,000 An additional duty of 1 d. upon the stamps of each newspaper 114,000 Increased duty on advertisements
20,000 On attorneys' certificates
15,000 On ornamented plate
30,000 Duty equal to the tolls on all carriages paffing turnpikes 450,000
£ 1, 199,000
Here the minister omitted three articles which he supplied the next day upon a suggestion of Mr. Fox, namely,
4. On bills of exchange
40,000 Insurance from fire
35,000 Omitted in the sums mentioned on the produce of the stamps on copies of deeds
10,000 These fums, being added, the whole produce of the new taxes made the sum of
Mr. Fox rose, and observed, that sum it was intended they mould, however unfounded the financial there would then be a deficiency calculations of the chancellor of of 88,000l. and that, according to the exchequer had formerly been, the report of the select committee, they were even exceeded in delu- at the beginning of the feffion fion by his statements that day, there was a deficiency of 357,00cl. which were altogether unprece- and in O&tober the right honourdented in the history of finance. able gentleman came forward and He came forward in December funded his navy bills, and in Delast, and having succeeded in ob- cember he made his loan; he taining a supply of 18 millions, he ought then to have announced that came forwards again in April, and the produce of the taxes was not repeated the experiment by calling equal to meet the public exigencies. upon parliament for the same fum. Instead of the taxes which had been The minister ought to be reminded, proposed, it appeared that the sum that, on the 9th of December, he of 1,800,000l. in taxes, would not told the house, that the 18 millions have been too much for the various then advanced were given not so exigencies of the moment. The remuch with an idea of prosecuting port of the select committee, he said, the war, as with an earnest hope of did not deserve the eulogium which enabling him to forward the de- had been palled upon it: according firable work of peace, and that to their account, the deficiency ahe stated that sum to be an ample mounted to 210,000l. whereas he supply for the exigencies of the (Mr. Fox) calculated it at 470,000l, state. After making some obser. He next examined the estimates for vations upon the statements given the navy service. In December in, of the produce of the taxes, the minister stated, that the probaMr. Fox contended, that ther still ble increase of the navy debt would remained a deficiency of 357,oool. be two millions and a half, and this though he did not from thence ar- he called a very ample estimate ; gue, that, because the minister was next he raised it to four millions ; minus for that sum, he should have and, lastly, in April, when he immediately proceeded to provide brought forward his second budget, for it; but he would contend, that he called for 8,764,000l. more. The for him to maintain that he had number of men voted for the ser. a surplus when he was actually de. vice of 1795 was 110,000, the vote ficient, was an illusion of too gross for the current year was for 120,000 and palpable a nature to impose men. Instead, therefore, of mak. upon the understanding. But if ing the increase less than it had the taxes of 1796 produced the been in the preceding year, the