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CHAPTER VII.

Finance.—The Budget—Speech of the Chancellor of the Exchequer— Observations of Mr. F. T. Baring, Mr. Hume, Sir R. Peel, Lord John Russell, Mr. Stuart Wortley, Lord Honick, and other Memhers—Discussions on the National Finances in the House of Lords, brought on by Lord Monteagle, who moves Resolutions—The Duke of Wellington opposes the Motion, entering into details on the subjectAble Speech of Lord Brougham on the same side—Lord Monteagle's Resolutions are negatived nithout a division. SugaR Duties.—The Chancellor of the Erchequer moves a renewal of the Duties of the preceding year—Mr. Cobden remonstrates against the Erpenditure incurred for the Colonies—Mr. Enart moves an equalisation of Duties on Foreign and Colonial Sugars. The Motion is supported by Mr. Brotherton, Mr. Williers, Mr. Ward, Dr. Bowring, and Mr. Gibson, and opposed by Mr. James, Mr. Bernal, and Mr. G. Berkley—On a division, the Motion is rejected by 135 to 50—Mr. Hanes moves to reduce the Duty on Foreign Sugar to 34s.—Mr. Gladstone and Sir R. Peel oppose the Proposition, on the ground of its tendency to encourage the Slave-Trade—Mr. Labouchere argues in favour of the Motion, nhich is rejected on a Division, by 203 to 122. Wool Duties.—Mr. C. Wood moves for a Committee of the nhole House, with a view to their reduction. He shows the decline of the Trade by Statistical Returns—Sir R. Peel alleges the decline of the Revenue as an argument against the Motion—It is negatived by a large Majority—Removal of the Restrictions on Erport of Machinery—Mr. Gladstone brings in a Bill for that purpose—Observations of Mr. Hindley, Mr. S. Wortley, Mr. Labouchere, Mr. Cobden, and other Members—The second reading is carried by 96 to 18–It is opposed by Earl Stanhope in the House of Lords, but is incorporated with the Customs Bill, and passed.

HE serious falling-off in the revenue, which the commencement of this year exhibited, has been noticed in a former chapter. Under such circumstances, it could not be expected that the Chancellor of the Exchequer would be in a situation to exhibit a very cheering picture, or hold out the

prospect of any alleviation of the national burthens. The most

ressing and stringent of these, indeed, the Income-tax, however it might be complained of under the existing depression, could not but be felt in the diminution of the other branches of revenue, to be the great prop and mainstay of

the public Exchequer. . Without the supply derived from this source, the condition of the national resources would have been serious, indeed, and the necessity of the impost in such a juncture, was recognised, tacitly at least, by most persons, whatever their political prepossessions might be. The unwelcome duty of announcing to Parliament the short-coming of the public means, which had been anticipated in the estimates of the preceding year, devolved upon Mr. Goulburn, who made his annual statement, according to custom, in a Committee of Ways and Means, on the 8th of May. He commenced his address, by referring to the large measures introduced in the former year for the increase of revenue, and for the diminution of import duties, observing, that though the imposition of the Property-tax and the diminution of the Importduties were contemporaneous, the new tax did not come into operation till after six or nine months from its enactment; while the remission of the old duties took effect at once—so that there was one period of the last year during which the accruing income was unequal to the current expenditure. To have postponed the reduction of the duties, when once such reduction had been announced, would have been injurious to trade in all the articles affected by that reduction; and it had not been thought justifiable to meet the exigency, by the only other alternative, the raising of a loan for the year's service. The revenue calculated upon by Sir Robert Peel for the year, from the Customs, had been 22,500,000l. : in that he had been disappointed, the actual produce having been

only 21,750,000l. A great part of the deficiency had been upon the wine duty, the wine-trade having been extensively checked by the delays of the Treaty with Portugal. There had also been a diminution on the estimated duty upon foreign spirits ; but this diminution, he hoped, was owing chiefly to the improvement in the temperance of the people. The timber duty, on which there had been a remission, had produced somewhat less than had been expected from it; but the timber trade was now improving, and with it the produce of the duty. The case was the same with coffee. On the minor articles included in the tariff the loss had been in a somewhat larger proportion. On the other hand, there had been an increase in the consumption of tea, sugar, tobacco, molasses, and pepper; there had been also an increase in the consumption of cotton, and various other articles employed in manufactures, indicating a general improvement in our industry; and he was happy to say, that the rate of that increase had been much accelerated since the begining of the present year. On the estimated produce of the Excise, there had been a deficiency of 1,200,000l., of which Mr. Goulburn proceeded to explain the details. Upon the whole, the revenue had fallen short of Sir R. Peel's estimate by somewhat more than 2,000,000l. : that defalcation was, however, diminished to about 1,250,000l., by a payment from China of about 725,000l. Against the deficiency thus constituted, was to be set the produce of the Income-tax, which had exceeded the expectation formed of it. It was not yet all collected, but it would probably amount

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to about 5,500,000l., of which about 5,100,000l. would be net sevenue. He might now be asked, in what way he intended to meet this deficiency; and he would at Once declare, he had no new measure to propose. His calculation was, that the causes which had occasioned the deficiency of the last year, were of a temporary character; that in the next and subsequent years, there would beasurplus of revenue, and out of that he proposed to discharge the small deficiency of the year gone by. Until the repayment thus Contemplated should be complete, the state of things would, undoubtedly, be an irksome one for the Ministers; but the more irksome it might be, the stronger would be the inducement to them to make every effort for keeping down their expenditure. He would next present his estimate for the ensuing year: there were two heavy charges, which did not form part of the ordinary expenses of the year—the one a payment of 800,000l. to the owners of the Opium, and the other a payment of 1,250,000l. to the East India Company, on account of expenses borne by them for the China war. He proposed to advance the money requisite for these two payments, andtakerepaymentoutofthefuture remittances from China. He then proceeded to state the probable revenue of the year under the usual heads of Customs, Excise, Stamps, and so forth, making a total estimated revenue of 50,150,000l., in which, however, he included a sum of 870,000l. from the Chinese government; and he followed this calculation with an estimate of the probable expenses of the year, under the usual heads of Army, Navy, Ordnance, &c.; making

a total estimated outlay of 49,387,645l., which being deducted from the 50,150,000l., would leave a surplus of 762,000l. in favour of revenue above expenditure. Under these circumstances he had not been able, however much he desired it, to yield to any of the numerous applications which had been made to him, for remission of taxation. He trusted, that if there were any error in his computation, it would turn out that he had been too moderate, rather than too sanguine in his estimates, especially as he now saw indications of improvement, on which he thought himself entitled to rely, in the augmented consumption and reviving manufactures of the country. He then stated the substance of several important returns, respecting the state of industry, in the three great towns of London, Liverpool, and Manchester, confirming this favourable view, particularly as to the cotton, linen, and woollen manufactures. Distress, indeed, was still prevailing in other branches of our industry; but an improvement in the greater branches must necessarily extend itself in no long time to the others. Therefore, though he was not in a condition to make a flattering statement of the country's resources, he trusted the time was not distant, when the Chancellor of the Exchequer would be able to come down with a proposal, for easing the industry of the country, by important remissions. He concluded by moving a vote of 47,943,000l. Mr.F.T. Baring asked, why the money already received from China, was brought into the general resources of the year, instead of being applied to meet those claims of the the public Exchequer. Without the supply derived from this source, the condition of the national resources would have been serious, indeed, and the necessity of the impost in such a juncture, was recognised, tacitly at least, by most persons, whatever their political prepossessions might be. The unwelcome duty of announcing to Parliament the short-coming of the public means, which had been anticipated in the estimates of the preceding year, devolved upon Mr. Goulburn, who made his annual statement, according to custom, in a Committee of Ways and Means, on the 8th of May. He commenced his address, by referring to the large measures introduced in the former year for the increase of revenue, and for the diminution of import duties, observing, that though the imposition of the Property-tax and the diminution of the Importduties were contemporaneous, the new tax did not come into operation till after six or nine months from its enactment; while the remission of the old duties took effect at once—so that there was one period of the last year during which the accruing income was unequal to the current expenditure. To have postponed the reduction of the duties, when once such reduction had been announced, would have been injurious to trade in all the articles affected by that reduction ; and it had not been thought justifiable to meet the exigency, by the only other alternative, the raising of a loan for the year's service. The revenue calculated upon by Sir Robert Peel for the year, from the Customs, had been 22,500,000l. : in that he had been disappointed, the actual produce having been

only 21,750,000l. A great part of the deficiency had been upon the wine duty, the wine-trade having been extensively checked by the delays of the Treaty with Portugal. There had also been a diminution on the estimated duty upon foreign spirits ; but this diminution, he hoped, was owing chiefly to the improvement in the temperance of the people. The timber duty, on which there had been a remission, had produced somewhat less than had been expected from it; but the timber trade was now improving, and with it the produce of the duty. The case was the same with coffee. On the minor articles included in the tariff the loss had been in a somewhat larger proportion. On the other hand, there had been an increase in the consumption of tea, sugar, tobacco, molasses, and pepper ; there had been also an increase in the consumption of cotton, and various other articles employed in manufactures, indicating a general improvement in our industry; and he was happy to say, that the rate of that increase had been much accelerated since the begining of the present year. On the estimated produce of the Excise, there had been a deficiency of 1,200,000l., of which Mr. Goulburn proceeded to explain the details. Upon the whole, the revenue had fallen short of Sir R. Peel's estimate by somewhat more than 2,000,000l. : that defalcation was, however, diminished to about 1,250,000l., by a payment from China of about 725,000l. Against the deficiency thus constituted, was to be set the produce of the Income-tax, which had exceeded the expectation formed of it. It was not yet all collected, but it would probably amount to about 5,500,000l., of which about 5,100,000l. would be net revenue. He might now be asked, in what way he intended to meet this deficiency; and he would at once declare, he had no new measure to propose. His calculation was, that the causes which had occasioned the deficiency of the last year, were of a temporary character; that in the next and subsequent years, there would be a surplus of revenue, and out of that he proposed to discharge the small deficiency of the year gone by. Until the repayment thus contemplated should be complete, the state of things would, undoubtedly, be an irksome one for the Ministers; but the more irksome it might be, the stronger would be the inducement to them to make every effort for keeping down their expenditure. He would next present his estimate for the ensuing year: there were two heavy charges, which did not form part of the ordinary expenses of the year—the one a payment of 800,000l. to the owners of the opium, and the other a payment of 1,250,000l. to the East India Company, on account of expenses borne by them for the China war. He proposed to advance the money requisite for these two payments, and takerepaymentoutofthefuture remittances from China. He then proceeded to state the probable revenue of the year under the usual heads of Customs, Excise, Stamps, and so forth, making atotal estimated revenue of 50,150,000l., in which, however, he included a sum of 870,000l. from the Chinese government; and he followed this calculation with an estimate of the probable expenses of the year, under the usual heads of Army, Navy, Ordnance, &c.; making

a total estimated outlay of 49,387,645l., which being deducted from the 50,150,000l., would leave a surplus of 762,000l. in favour of revenue above expenditure. Under these circumstances he had not been able, however much he desired it, to yield to any of the numerous applications which had been made to him, for remission of taxation. He trusted, that if there were any error in his computation, it would turn out that he had been too moderate, rather than too sanguine in his estimates, especially as he now saw indications of improvement, on which he thought himself entitled to rely, in the augmented consumption and reviving manufactures of the country. He then stated the substance of several important returns, respecting the state of industry, in the three great towns of London, Liverpool, and Manchester, confirming this favourable view, particularly as to the cotton, linen, and woollen manufactures. Distress, indeed, was still prevailing in other branches of our industry; but an improvement in the greater branches must necessarily extend itself in no long time to the others. Therefore, though he was not in a condition to make a flattering statement of the country's resources, he trusted the time was not distant, when the Chancellor of the Exchequer would be able to come down with a proposal, for easing the industry of the country, by important remissions. He concluded by moving a vote of 47,943,000l. Mr.F.T. Baring asked, why the money already received from China, was brought into the general resources of the year, instead of being applied to meet those claims of the

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