§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time."—[Mr. Rea.]72
§ Mr. RAWLINSON
I should like to know why the Home Office is in charge of this Bill, and the other Charities Bills, and whether they have any control of the finances; and, secondly, whether or not there is any precedent for the Clause which appears in this Bill by which the Charity Commissioners may from time to time in the exercise of their ordinary jurisdiction prepare suitable schemes for the alteration of any provision of these schemes as if such alteration had been made by the founder, in cases where the charity had a founder? Will that have the effect of giving complete power to the Charity Commissioners to alter these schemes in any way, and, if so, will there be any means of opposing their wishes in the matter? I find this new Clause in some of the other Bills. Is there a precedent for it, and what is the effect of it?
§ The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. Brace)
The reason why the Home Office is in charge of this round dozen of Charity Bills is not that the Home Office is specially interested in the question, but because my right hon. Friend the Parliamentary Charity Commissioner would not be able to move the Bills, inasmuch as the Government has taken the whole time of the House. I am informed that the Bills introduce no new principle whatsoever, and that the powers taken by the Charities Commissioners are the usual powers. To make doubly sure, however, and to give satisfaction to my hon. and learned Friend, I will make it my business, between now and the Committee stage, to make special inquiry, and will inform him exactly on the points about which he inquires.
Sir H. DALZIEL
May I inquire how many more of these Bills are going to be taken at the present Sitting? My hon. Friend who has just sat down will have noticed that two representative Members of the House have put down Amendments to move the rejection of this Bill. The House was summoned to-day to take a certain number of Bills, and no mention whatever was made of these particular Bills.
Sir H. DALZIEL
That does not mean that it was intended to take the round dozen referred to by the Under-Secretary. I would suggest to the Government, in view of the fact that notices of rejection are down by two representative Members, and that, being taken by surprise to some extent, those Members have left the House, whether they would not be content with the measures they have obtained up to the present time. I would repeat my question as to whether the Parliamentary Secretary can tell us how far it is intended to go? I think we have gone quite far enough for the present sitting.
§ Mr. GULLAND (Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury)
It was distinctly stated that Charity Bills would be taken. As my hon. Friend has said, there is no new point in any of these Bills. It is very desirable that these charity schemes should be got through as early as possible, and I do hope my right hon. Friend will not make any objection to taking the Bills down to the Plymouth "Workhouse Charity Bill. The only other Order we propose to take is that for Committee on the Navy and Army Expenditure, 1914–15.