§ SIR HENRY SELWIN-IBBETSON
, in rising to move for leave to bring in a Bill to amend the Law with respect to the Appointment, Payment, and Fees of Clerks of Justices of the Peace and Clerks of Special and Petty Sessions, said, that as far back as 1851 the question and the payment of these clerks by fees instead of salaries was raised, and a clause was passed enabling localities to adopt that mode of payment. The change was obviously desirable in many cases in which the fees were far in excess of the penalty inflicted, or intended to be inflicted, by the magistrates, and where this was the case people got an idea that the magistrates were urged to convict 150 by the clerks for the sake of their own profit. More recently, and particularly in 1872, attempts were made to render compulsory the payment of clerks by salary, and almost all the resistance they met with was due to differences of opinion about uniformity of fees, which, however desirable, was practically impossible. The salaries of the clerks to the Justices were often in excess of the fees received in their districts, and the Bill was framed to meet the inevitable differences between rural and populous districts, and would call upon some localities to submit fresh tables of fees to the Home Secretary.
Motion agreed to.
Bill to amend the Law with respect to the Appointment, Payment, and Fees of Clerks of Justices of the Peace and Clerks of Special and Petty Sessions, ordered to be brought in by Sir HENRY SELWIN-IBBETSON and Mr. Secretary CROSS.
Bill presented, and read the first time. [Bill 5.]