§ Order of the Day for the Second Reading read.
*THE SECRETARY FOR SCOTLAND (Lord BALFOUR OF BURLEIGH)
My Lords, the circumstances under which it is necessary to ask Parliament to pass this short Bill are these: In the year before last Parliament passed a measure giving local authorities, both in England and Scotland, power to contribute to or establish certified inebriates' reformatories. Subsequent experience has shown us that in two small points the Act, in its application to Scotland, is not perfect. It refers to the Reformatory Schools Act of 1877, and gives the local authorities the same powers to contribute to inebriates' reformatories as they have to reformatories generally in that Act, but it has been pointed out that in that Act there is no power to raise loans, and that the definition of burghs is imperfect. As those of your Lordships who come from Scotland know, there is more than one kind of burgh in Scotland, and they are not all mentioned in the definition clause of the Act of 1877. The first clause of this Bill remedies that defect, and the second clause adds one offence to the schedule, which, when committed accompanied by drunkenness, renders those who commit it liable to be brought before a magistrate for committal the a certified inebriate reformatory. The offence in question is that of behaving whilst drunk in a riotous or disorderly manner. The Bill is a short and simple one, and I need not detain your Lordships by giving any further explanation of it. I beg to move that it be read a second time.
§ Bill read 2a (according to order), and committed to a Committee of the whole House To-morrow.