§ COLONEL NORTH (for Mr. CLARE READ)
asked the Vice President of the Council, Whether he contemplates issuing any order to facilitate stamping out pleuro-pneumonia in cattle, or for carrying out any of the other recommendations of the Report of the Contagious Diseases (Animals) Committee?
§ MR. W. E. FORSTER,
in reply, said, that the Report of the Committee on the Contagious Diseases (Animals) Act had just been delivered to hon. Members. That Committee sat nearly through the Session; they had taken much evidence, and had carefully considered the subject. Several suggestions had been offered by the Committee which required the careful consideration of the Government generally; but there were two suggestions which his noble Friend (Lord Ripon) and himself were of opinion ought to be acted upon at once. One was, the recommendation of the Committee, that animals affected with pleuro-pneumonia should be slaughtered. The Committee, on the other hand, did not recommend that animals which came in contact with those which had been affected should be slaughtered. The Privy Council had, consequently, replaced the permissive Order to local authorities, by a General Order, that animals affected by pleuro-pneumonia should be slaughtered, and that compensation for such slaughter should be given to the owners. It was thought that a General Order should be substituted for permissive regulations, in order that the rules as to the diseases of animals should be the same throughout the country. The Privy Council, however, came to the conclusion after close consideration of the question, that it was unadvisable to do anything towards stopping the foot-and-mouth disease, except by the regulations existing in the Act, and that no Order should be issued by the Privy Council, either permissive or general, beyond the regulations of the Act. Lord Ripon and himself had consequently issued an Order to that effect, and both these Orders would 1521 appear in The Gazette. Another recommendation was, that a different principle of compensation should be adopted, and that compensation should be given for the amount of loss to the owner of the animals, instead of a fixed sum. The Government would carefully consider that suggestion; but they felt that they could not make the regulation with regard to pleuro-pneumonia without taking the opinion of Parliament, as compensation in cases of cattle plague was fixed by the Act.