§ MR. LOUGH () Islington, W.
I beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury whether he has observed that dissatisfaction has been expressed in commercial circles throughout London against certain proposals which are embodied in two Private Bills now before Parliament, with the object of amalgamating the London Docks into one company, with extended powers of levying tolls and dues at greatly increased rates; and whether, considering the importance of this subject to the commercial community, the Government would be willing to appoint a Select Committee (to whom both Bills might be referred) with power to inquire into the present position of the Port of London, and to take recommendations as to the 580 nature of the reforms that may be necessary.
§ MR. RITCHIE
My right hon. friend has asked me to reply to this. So far as the Amalgamation Bill is concerned it is, I understand, merely a domestic arrangement, conferring no extra powers of charge on the companies, and I therefore see no reason why it should not be referred to a Committee in the ordinary course if the House reads it a second time. With regard to the other Bill it is clear that if it be road a second time the character of the Committee to which the Bill is referred will require careful consideration.