§ Lord J. Russell
then said, that he rose for leave to bring in several bills respecting the administration of justice. The first was a bill for the better ordering of prisons. He had introduced a similar bill in the last Session, but although it had undergone a good deal of discussion in this House, and had eventually passed it with very little opposition, it had been thrown out in the other House. If he were asked to suggest a reason for its being so thrown out, he could only suppose that it was on account of some misconception on the part of their Lordships as to the nature of the powers proposed by the Bill to be given to the Secretary of State, which might have been imagined to have been powers for enforcing rules for the separate confinement of prisoners. That, however, was a misconception; and, with a view to make the intention of the Bill still more clear, he (Lord J. Russell) had altered the words of the clause, by which it would now appear that the power was only to be given to the parties usually authorised to make such regulations, in order to be submitted to the Secretary of State. There was also another provision which he had to propose, to enable the justices of the county, and 221 of boroughs, to contract for prisons in their districts, and thereby the expense of sending prisoners thirty or forty miles be avoided. That provision he proposed to embody in a separate Bill, and therefore he should move for leave to bring in a Bill for the better ordering of prisons, and a Bill for the establishment of district prisons.
§ Leave given.