§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill."
I notice that these Clauses 6 and 7 are simply to impose a tariff in the Isle of Man equivalent to our own tariff. Is it not a fact that motor cars in the Isle of Man were at some time exempt and are they not now exempt from the McKenna taxes?
It is precisely because Clause 7 has a bearing on the McKenna tariff that I am asking this question.
§ The CHAIRMAN
When I am considering the Isle of Man (Customs) Bill I know nothing about the McKenna tariff or any other British tariff. All I am concerned with is that these duties have been imposed by the Manx Legislature and the only question before us now is whether the Acts of ale Manx Legislature are to be confirmed or not.
But surely it is an Imperial matter. We are considering how far this tariff corresponds with our own tariff. I submit that I may ask the Financial Secretary for information on this point.
§ Mr. McNEILL
The hon. and gallant Member wants to know what the Motor Car Duties are in the Isle of Man as compared with those in this country. The answer is the same. In view of what the hon. and gallant Member has said, and also what the hon. Member for Hillsborough (Mr. A. V. Alexander) has said about these duties being imposed upon the people of the Isle of Man, I may mention that the Resolution and the duties proposed in the Resolution in the Isle of Man were proposed there without any previous communication with the British Government at all. I presume they get our Parliamentary papers there; I do not pretend that they did not act upon our example, but so far from there 2264 being anything in the nature of pressure from us, there was no communication at all.
That is not the question I was asking. I was asking rather how long is it since the two tariffs have been similar, because for some time motor cars in the Isle of Man were free, whereas motor cars in this country were taxed.
With regard to the reply of the Financial Secretary, may I ask whether the authorities do not show clearly that the initiation of taxation is with His Majesty's 'Government? I quote from the "Enclycopædia Britannica"[Interruption]:The Imperial Government, after intimating its intention, fixes the rates of Customs Duties.It is quite clear that the initiation does lie with the British Government in suggesting to the Isle of Man authorities what the rates of the Customs Duties shall be.
§ Mr. McNEILL
I will try to remove the delusions of the hon. Member. Perhaps he does not know that I myself am largely responsible for the production of the book of reference to which he has referred, and with great pains he has found a point of inaccuracy. If he has accurately quoted it, I am afraid it is inaccurate, because it is not the case that the initiation comes from His Majesty's Government. If the hon. Gentleman will look at a more direct authority, the Report of the Departmental Committee on the Constitution of the Isle of Man, published even more recently than that great work, he will find these words:The impression prevalent in the Isle of Man in some quarters that the items in the Statement—that is, the Financial Statement—are approved by the home Government before its presentation is inaccurate. From time to time the Lieutenant-Governor or the Treasurer may confer informally on some 2265 doubtful point with the Home Office or the Treasurer, but no formal authority is sought or given until the resolutions have been passed by the Tywald.
Is it not a fact that the Lieut.-Governor is the representative of the Crown in the Isle of Man?
§ Clauses 8 (Duties on silk) and 9 (Duties on wines) ordered to stand part of the Bill.