HC Deb 21 March 1881 vol 259 cc1497-8

asked the First Lord of the Treasury, On what day he proposes to make the Financial Statement?


I may be permitted, in answering this Question, to make the statement which the House expects me to make to-day as to the probable course of Business, and to state what we propose to do. I assume that to-night we shall dispose of the necessary Business in Supply, as well as, possibly, obtain several Votes which are not so pressing if it should be convenient to the House to consider them. That being so, it is generally understood that the Motion with regard to Candahar will come on on Thursday, and, as the debate is likely to be prolonged to a second night, it is desirable we should endeavour to continue the debate on Friday; that is the arrangement we should endeavour to promote. I will not say anything about particular days next week, excepting that we have the Mutiny Bill on hand, and should that require time for discussion, no doubt the proper time will be found. That carries us to the end of the month, and I should propose to make the Financial Statement on Monday, the 4th of April. I should then hope that on Thursday, the 7th of April, we may be able to introduce the Irish Land Bill. On Friday, the 8th of April, we shall propose to adjourn the House two or three days earlier than the usual time, involving the loss of one day or a day and a-half in business; but, after the very long Sittings of the House, I think that this is an arrangement which will meet with general approval. We shall propose to meet again on Monday, the 25th of April, which relatively is a little late, as the 17th would be the usual date for reassembling. As the Irish Land Bill will have been in the hands of Members and before the country for a considerable time, and as it is desirable not to lose time in the prosecution of it, we should propose—and I am anxious this should be understood in fixing the introduction for the 7th—to commence the debate on the second reading when the House re-assembles on the Monday.


said, he had a Motion relating to Local Taxation which stood for Friday, which it was proposed to appropriate for the adjourned debate on the Candahar Question. The matter was as important to the British farmer as hares and rabbits and malt liquors, and he had pledged himself to Ids constituents to bring it forward; therefore, before he could express his readiness to give way, he must ask the right hon. Gentleman whether he could give the farmers another chance of having the subject discussed?


I hope the hon. Member will be so kind as not to press me for a positive answer until we see our way a little further. Undoubtedly, if hon. Members are asked to allow their Motions to be displaced, that in itself will give plausibility to claims for consideration; but I naturally refrain from giving a positive answer. The hon. Member will see that the Mutiny Act may be a matter of the extremest urgency.