HC Deb 23 April 1863 vol 170 cc600-1

said, he was not about to say a single word on our relations with America; but there was a question of some importance to which he wished to call the attention of the Chancellor of the Exchequer. The right hon. Gentleman proposed to obtain a portion of his revenue for the year by a tax on charitable institutions. Having been applied to for information by persons connected with some of those bodies, he wished to know in what shape the right hon. Gentleman proposed to raise that question. The matter was a serious one to those institutions, many of which were not in a very flourishing state, owing, among other causes, perhaps, to the diversion of the stream of charity to the cotton districts. He was told that the new impost would take yearly no less a sum than £1,500 or £1,600 from the funds of one at least of the larger hospitals. Their case ought, therefore, to be fairly considered.


said, that in answering the question of the hon. Baronet he should not enter into any of the particulars to which he had referred, further than to say than an institution which would have to pay £1,500 or £1,600 a year must he in the receipt of between £50,000 and £60,000 annually, and therefore was not entirely without the means of taking some share in the public burdens. His proposal was a proposal which would go in modification of certain clauses of the Income Tax Act, and he had no choice but to raise the question by Bill. He would seek to pass a general Resolution that night, and to have it reported on the following night. If that were done, the Bill would be in the hands of Members and open to the view of the public on Saturday morning. The hon. Baronet could then gather from the clauses, which would not be very long or very complicated, the nature and effect of the enactments contemplated by the Government, and in Committee or at any subsequent stage of the Bill he would be ready to answer specific questions.

Main Question put, and agreed to.