§ LORD CHELMSFORD moved the second reading of the Bill, the object of which he explained to be to enable the captains of ships of war to appoint prize agents for the sale of prizes, for facilitating the distribution of the sums realized, and for providing for the appointment and remuneration of the agents. From 1814 to 1854 all prize matters were managed by agents appointed by the captains of the ships, and they were intrusted with the duty of selling prizes and distributing the proceeds. No complaint was ever made of the manner in which these persons had discharged their office, but in 1854 a Bill was proposed by the Admiralty by which that power was taken away from these persons, and intrusted to the Admiralty. Great objection had arisen from time to time against the operation of this measure, and the present Bill had been introduced in the other House to restore something like the former state of things as it existed from 1814 to 1854. The Bill provided for the appointment by the Admiralty of standing prize agents, with power of removal in case of dissatisfaction, the remuneration to be at the rate of 2½ per cent on the value of the prize. To the first part of the Bill he understood the Admiralty had no objection; but they did object to the latter portions of the measure, which portions, however, could be modified in Committee.
§ THE DUKE OF SOMERSET
said, he had no objection to the principle of the Bill, which was the appointment of a standing navy prize agent; but some of the de- 1032 tails of the measure would require to be amended in Committee.
§ Motion agreed to: Bill read 2a accordingly, and committed to a Committee of the Whole House To-morrow.