HC Deb 09 March 1815 vol 30 cc90-2
THE Chancellor of the Exchequer

said, that on rising to move for the postponement of the committee of ways and means till Monday, he was not actuated by any desire to put off that part of the debate which related to the new taxes; but as several gentlemen wished to propose alterations, and as they must at present be very much fatigued from the length of the late discussions, he thought he should consult their convenience by this postponement.

Mr. Tierney

said, that as far as he himself was concerned he did not wish the subject to be postponed. He was perfectly prepared to renew his observations on the subject, and to press it on the House that it was contrary to the form and essence of the mode of their voting money, that they should consent to grant so large a sum in taxes without farther information. If the right hon. gentleman would bring in the two first resolutions at that time, he could state the general objections which he had to urge, and which would have nothing to do with the nature of the particular taxes which were proposed.

Mr. Ponsonby

said, for his own part he was at that time unfit to attend to the discussion of any subject whatever; and he believed many members were equally fatigued with the late discussions: he wished, therefore, that the consideration of the resolutions should be postponed to Monday.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

said, that as he believed it was the general wish of the House, he should move that the Report be taken into further consideration on Monday.

Mr. Philips

said, that some of the taxes which had been proposed had excited great alarm among the manufacturing part of the community, and that deputations had been dispatched to wait on the right hon. gentleman. He thought therefore that Monday would be too early a period for the discussion.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

observed, that a much longer period than was usual had been suffered to intervene between the introduction of the resolutions, and the final decision of the House concerning them. He had already collected much information on the subject of the different taxes, and before Monday there would be time for any gentleman to make further communications to him on the subject.

Mr. Protheroe

said, that it was understood to be the intention of the right hon. gentleman to propose some modifications in the taxes upon the windows of manufactories; he wished to be informed what was their nature, as this information might induce many of his constituents to suspend the petitions which they were about to bring forward on the subject.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer

said, he was happy to state that to the House, which he had before stated to several gentlemen in private, that he had modified the tax, in such a manner that the pressure of it would not be inconvenient. The manufactories, in respect of windows, were of two distinct classes, one where the windows were small and numerous; the other where the windows were large, and extended from one end of the building to the other without division. Instead of 3s. 6d. per window he should reduce the tax to 1s. 6d. And when the number exceeded 100, the windows beyond that should be charged by measure, as in the case, of hot-houses, at 48 superficial feet the window, which would comprehend many small windows, and a great extent of the low long windows. As to the warehouse tax, he should not propose to adopt any progressive scale, and should propose the charge of only 2s. in the pound, however high the amount of rent might be, as the warehouse was considered as the means of profit, and not as the indication of the amount. Shops in those houses which were exempt from payment of taxes, at present, on account of poverty, would not be charged under the proposed tax; for instance, small cottages which contained shops. What he had said of warehouses, also applied to manufactories.

Mr. Butterworth

thought some modification of the tax on men-servants should be adopted, with respect to such as were under twenty years of age, who were taken by many persons as much from motives of charity, as for other purposes.

Mr. W. Smith

thought an undue pressure was thrown by the new taxes on the manufacturing interest. He thought malt-houses and granaries should be exempted from the window duties on manufactories, as the windows were for air and not light.

The Report was ordered to be taken into further consideration on Monday.