§ MR. J. G. TALBOT
asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether any additional Rule as to investigations in shipping casualties, affecting the appointment of nautical assessors, has been made under "The Merchant Shipping Act, 1876," and "The Shipping Casualties Investigations Act, 1879;" if so, whether he will state the date of such Rule, its provisions, and the reasons for making it; and, whether such Rule was laid before both Houses of Parliament within thirty days after the commencement of the next Session after it was made, in accordance with the provisions of 42 and 43 Vic, c. 72, s. 4; and, whether he has consulted the Law Officers of the Crown, as to any effect which may have resulted from the omission to comply with the statute in this matter?
§ MR. CHAMBERLAIN
, in reply, said, the new Rule under the Acts named was approved on October 30, 1880, by the Lord Chancellor. The object of the Rule was to correct an illegality discovered in previous Rules, and to replace on the list of assessors some gentlemen who had been removed, but whom the Act expressly retained for a limited period. As regarded the presentation of the Rule, the Board of Trade were under the idea that the new Rule would be laid on the Table of Parliament by the Home Office. He thought the Home Office had been under a similar impression with regard to the Board of Trade, and between the two the Rule had not been observed. But he would take care to lay it on the Table forthwith.
§ LORD EUSTACE CECIL
asked if the right hon. Gentleman would take counsel's opinion as to whether any illegality had arisen under the operation of the Rule?