HC Deb 28 April 1881 vol 260 cc1320-1

asked the First Lord of the Treasury, referring to the recent meeting of the Members from Scotland, and the statement made thereat by the Lord Advocate, Whether, if the next meeting which the Lord Advocate has promised to call is generally favourable to the constitution of county representative boards as the proper organization for receiving and administering such share of Imperial taxation as may correspond with subsidies in aid of local rates, he will this Session bring in a Bill to constitute such boards?


Sir, I should not like to pledge myself absolutely to the introduction of a Bill during the present Session, until I had an opportunity of forming a judgment as to whether this can be advantageously done. All I can say is, that I am extremely desirous to promote the purpose for which the Question is put—namely, the purpose of establishing completely satisfactory county government in Scotland. I deem it of the highest importance, not only with reference to the general principle of local government, and likewise with reference to good arrangements for the portion of expenditure which consists in county subvention, and, if possible, to the material relief of the Business of this House. What I should wish to say is, that if the Scotch Members, to a large extent, see their way to progress in the general subject, I should be desirous of giving every possible facility in the power of the Government with a view to prompt and, if possible, immediate legislation.