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ject of finance, moved the order of the several statements more favourthe day for resuming the debate on able to his views than the strictest the subject of those resolutions; re. accuracy warranted. He had stated marking, at the same time, that he the money paid to the Bank as paid thought it unnecessary to enter into for managing generally; it ought to the general question of the finances have been for managing the public of the country, which, indeed, had debt. He had stated the number of already been fully and ably discuss
at 19,000; the number ed, but should confine himself to a ought to have been 20,000. He few observations on the motives that had been led into a mistake, also, in had induced him to submit these re. calculating the expenses in the
of. solutions to the consideration of the fice of the Secretary-at-War. The House. He was convinced that if expences under this head for 1796 an investigation were seriously en- had been stated at L. 8,000, when tered into, with the view of re- they ought to have been stated at ducing the public expenditure, very L. 51,000. But still the sum voted important reductions might be ef. this fourth year of peace, L.55,000, fected in various departments. The was L. 4,000 more than it had been Committee of Finance, in their last in 1796, which had been the third report, had calculated upon a reduc- year of the war. In stating the intion of L. 200,000 upon the expen- crease of the civil list, it ought to diture for 1820, but they had not in have been stated to have increased that calculation taken into account from L. 900,000 to L. 1,030,000. any retrenchment of public offices. He was aware that in offering any Yet he was prepared to maintain, resolutions upon the subject, be exthat in every branch of those offices posed his statements to the charge of a considerable saving might be made. wanting official authority, and laid The collection of the revenue at pre- himself open, perhaps, to the impusent cost the public 7 per cent. ; by tation of interfering with the proreducing it to 5 per cent. L.1,200,000 vince of official men. But the state would be saved. Whatever might of the finances, of this country was be the merits or defects of his resolu- such as to require retrenchments to tions, he had spared no labour in be effected, not in the manner which making them as correct as possible; had hitherto prevailed, but with a and he had been careful not to make considerable degree of innovation.
Office, in all of which, the honourable Baronet has been guilty of numerous and important mistakes; and he proposes the consolidation of the offices of the Paymaster of the Army, Treasurer of the Navy, and Treasurer of the Ordnance into one board, to transact the business of a Bank, for the whole military expenditure, as well as of the offices of Commander-in-Chief, Se. cretary at War, and Comptroller of Army Accounts. These are, no doubt, sweeping reforms, and surely ought to bave been supported by correct data : the facts ought to have been accurate, though the reasoning founded on them bad been fallacious. But no sound conclusion can be drawn from false premises, alıbough a very unfair inference may be deduced from sound principles. Such we should consider that of the bonourable Baronet, even had the facts be states been as well founded as we know, both from his own candid admission, and from the errors detected in the course of the debate, that they are the reverse. With regard to the last 10 resolutions, relative to the Store-keeper General's department, as they appear to be very trivial and unimportant, and did not particularly engage the attention of ibe House du. ring the discussion, we therefore pass them over; merely noticing the Baronet's sweeping conclusion, that, from its institution, the establishment of the Store-keeper-General has been exorbitant, and is at present wasteful and extravagant, and altogether disproportionate to a time of peace and the duties to be performed in it. Euge!
The saving that could be made by honourable Baronet to have produreducing the expences while the es. ced no benefit, because the Treasury tablishments remained untouched, had interfered and taken into their would be very trifling; but by a to- own hands the disposal of surcharges. tally different system a very consi. But if questions of surcharges had derable saving could be made. For been left to the auditors of accounts, instance, if the patronage of offices, did the honourable Baronet believe instead of being vested in the Go- that that would have afforded the vernment, were given to the heads same security to the public? He of the several departments, and if should say nothing of the statements greater attention were paid to the respecting the Secretary-at-War's keeping of public accounts, much Office, because his noble friend was expence might be saved. He should present, and the honourable Baronet not now enter more fully into the had acknowledged his mistake. The subject, but on a more convenient honourable Baronet had expressed occasion he should prove that his in. surprise that the expences were now ferences were correct.
double what they had been in 1796. Mr C. Long, after alluding to the But the expences were not doubled. acknowledged inaccuracies of the In 1796 they had been L. 19,000 resolutions of the honourable Ba- instead of L. 15,000: for there had ronet, remarked, that he had institut. been six paymasters instead of one, ed a comparison of customs and ex- as supposed by the honourable Bacise; and the inference to be made ronet. Since that time L.5,300 were was, that the one was extremely well paid yearly as retired allowances, and collected, and the other extremely the extra clerks employed in the ill
. To make such a comparison fair, Ordnance Office made this sum the things compared ought to stand L. 8,000, which left only an excess upon the same principle; but no fair of L.3,000 over the expences of 1796. comparison could be instituted be. The half-pay officers in 1796 had been tween things so different as the cus- 3,000 ; they were now 9,000. In toms and excise-the one amounting 1796 they had been paid twice in the only to L. 10,000,000, while the o
year; now they were paid four times. ther amounted to L.20,000,000. In It was the same with widows' penthe charges of collection, too, things sions. Those changes had neceswere charged which had nothing to sarily increased the expences. He do with them-such as expences a- should be sorry, however, to be un. rising from navigation laws, quaran- derstood to state, that no retrenchtine laws, and warehousing of goods. ment could be made in the collecThe honourable Baronet had com. tion of the revenue. But a resolu. pared the charges of 1810 and 1819. tion had already passed the house, But in 1811 the abolition of fees had binding Ministers to retrenchment. been enacted, which threw large Lord Palmerston felt anxious to charges upon the collection of the say a few words, both in reply to the revenue. The honourable Baronet honourable Baronet, and also to exhad recommended a consolidation of plain the regulation adopted respectthe customs. Now, not less than ing half-pay officers holding civil apthree several acts of consolidation pointments. He had to take blame had passed; one in 1807, and one to himself for not having had his atwhich had been introduced this year. tention directed to this subject while The act of 1807 had been said by the the appropriation bill was passing
through the House, as the alteration ronet had complained that he had proposed might have been introdu- not had access to official documents ; ced as an amendment upon the third but he had not made use of those doreading. The Government stood cuments which were accessible to pledged to make an alteration in the him. The honourable Baronet had oath taken by half-pay officers, and the compared the expence in the office Treasury would, with the fair under- of Commander-in-Chief at the prestanding of the House, make an ar- sent day with what it was in the year rangement to give effect to this mea. 1793. According to his statement,
They were to give half-pay it did not at that time exceed the officers, holding civil appointments, sum of L.813, exclusive of any salary a military allowance equal to and in to the Commander-in-Chief. Now, lieu of their half-pay, and for such it was rather an unhappy comparison allowance no oath was required re. for the honourable Baronet to make, specting civil officers. At present for there was no such office as that the half-pay officers swore that they of Commander-in-Chief then in ex. held no office civil or military, &c.; istence. Lord Amherst was General the alteration proposed was, that of the Staff at that period, and his they held no military office, except authority extended only to the troops colonial offices, now allowed, which at home; and in his letter of service exceeded three times the rate of he was directed to act under the orhalfpay. As it had been suggest. ders of the King, who was the Comed that it was a hardship to take mander-in-Chief, or any superior ofsuch an oath, in cases where the ficer who might be placed over him. other emoluments barely exceeded The honourable Baronet, therefore, three times the pay, the following ar- was mistaken in the comparison he rangement was to be adopted had made, as the office of Commap. The half-pay was calculated at the der-in-Chief had been created since highest rate which it could possibly the period to which he referred, and
be, and this was to be considered one the care of the person who filled it : fourth of the income which a half- not only extended to the troops at
pay officer could have. But if bis home but to those in every foreign half-pay were really less than this station. He had also erred in his sum, he was to be allowed to exceed calculation of the expence at the date the three times his half-pay, so far to which he referred. Instead of as to make up this deficiency. With L.813 it was L. 1230; the salary of respect to the resolutions of the ho- Lord Amherst's secretary was, it was nourable Baronet, he thought that a true, only 10s. per day, but then he table of errata ought to have been held another situation in the War Oflaid before the house, in order to be fice, which, with the fees belonging printed. The corrections ought sure. to it, produced him an income of ly to proceed pari passu with the er- L.800 or L.900 a-year. As a proof
He imputed no intention to that the 10s. a.day were not consithe honourable Baronet of mislead- dered a sufficient salary, distinct from ing the House: but from statements the other situation which he held, he so full of errors, he could not think need only mention, that his retiring that the House could expect to find allowance was L.l per day. Jf then the honourable Baronet a very able these allowances were taken into assistant in conducting economy and consideration, the expences of Lord retrenchment. The honourable Ba- Amherst's office, independently of his salary, amounted to L. 2,000 in- standing the disposition to criticize stead of L.813, as had been stated. severely every motion of an econoBut this error was trifling when com- mical kind, notwithstanding all the pared with another, to which he address of the right honourable genshould refer. This was of not a less tleman (Mr C. Long), with the ofsum than L.49,000 in the War-Office. ficial information which he possessed The honourable Baronet had stated, on the subject, he had left the main that the expence of the War-Office in point untouched. He had indeed al1796 amounted only to L. 8,256. luded to some parts of the resolutions Now, in this calculation, unfortu- where he sought to point out errors nately, the honourable Baronet had in the calculations; but with the main omitted to notice many items and principle of them he had not attemptcontingencies which were then char- ed to grapple. He had not touchged, and which, if added to the sum ed upon that part which complained he gave, would amount to L. 57,000 of the immense sum of L. 5,500,000 some odd hundred pounds, making for the collection of the revenue. on the whole more than L. 2000 a. This was indeed the keystone of their bove the sum voted for the War-Of. popularity and consequence in the fice in the present year. With re. country. As long as they had spect to the expence of L.18,000 for L.5,500,000 to give away, so long bringing up the arrears of army ac- would they be popular with a certain counts, he should only observe, that, part of the public, and so long would according to the reports of commit- their administration be praised. They tees of the House, this commission did not, therefore, pretend to grapple had already saved, by disallowances, with this part of the resolutions. With which had been recovered, more than respect to the argument of the Noble L.90,000 a-year upon the average of Lord (Palmerston) on the subject of one year with another, since its for the office of Commander-in-Chief, he mation; a sum which was more than saw nothing in it against the resoluthe whole expence of the War-Office tions of his honourable friend. His together. As to the proposition of honourable friend had said, that the the honourable Baronet to consoli- expense in 1793 was only L. 813 ; date the offices of paymaster of the and the Noble Lord added that it was Army, treasurer of the Navy, and about L.2,000. This was the usual treasurer of the Ordnance, into a accuracy of the other (the Ministeboard, to transact the business of the rial) side, in small matters. He differbank for the whole military expendi- ed from the Noble Lord in thinking ture, &c. for the purpose of creating that the resolution of his honourable a reduction of expence, he should friend implied that there was a Comonly say, that the abolition of those mander-in-Chief at the period to offices altogether would be a still which he had alluded. The Noble Lord greater saving; but he could assure had told the house, how well his own the honourable Baronet, that if he department was managed, and that regarded the speedy and correct the comparison of the honourable dispatch of public business in those Baronet was in this instance quite erdepartments, he would find himself roneous : but his honourable friend mistaken in thinking that they could had, with the candour which belong. be better done together than sepa- ed to him, acknowledged his mistake rately.
on the subject, and corrected it as Mr Calcraft thought, that notwith. soon as he could. It should also be recollected, that at the period referred ments: Thirdly, that a great increase to (1793) there was no Commander- had been made to the salaries of sein-Chief, and that the expence of that veral of the Officers in the dock-yards office at present might be put as a and other places, to remove the abuset-off against the expence of the of. ses which had crept in, in consefice of Secretary-at-War at the for- quence of their being allowed to mer period. But it was said, “Where pay themselves by fees, allowances, is the necessity of these resolutions &c. : And, fourthly, that the fortynow? Have you not already a reso. seven resolutions, proposed by the lution for economy and reform in the honourable Baronet, were brought public expenditure? Are not Minis- in without stating the causes of the ters pledged to this resolution?” increase which they had mentioned; He should say, he cared not for such and, therefore, that the comparisons a resolution. He gave no credit for made in them of the expences of the it; he had seen no one overt act of present with some former years economy in the right honourable were calculated to mislead the pubgentleman, which could make him lic. think that there was any real benefit Colonel Davies compared the exto be expected from the resolution pences incurred in the war departto which he had alluded. If any eco- ment in the year 1796, with those nomy were really intended, why not which are incurred in it at the premove the resolution in the shape of sent period. In 1796, the salary of an address to the Throne? This the Secretary-at-War, and the ninewould be adding dignity to it, and teen clerks who acted under him, agiving to the public some ground of mounted to L.16,070. In 1806, the hope.
number of clerks had increased from Sir T. B. Martin was so convinced 19 to 112, and their salaries from that the resolutions of the honourable L.16,070 to L.29,970. In 1816, there Baronet were erroneously drawn, were 147 clerks, and their salaries athat, if they were put, he should mounted to L. 47,937. He wished move four others, which he begged the House would contrast the exhe might then be allowed to read. penditure which we were now incur
- First, that the resolutions of the ring, in the fifth year of peace, with honourable Baronet did not contain that which we had incurred in the a full statement of all the expences year 1796, when the nation was inof the different branches to which volved in an arduous and difficult they referred at former periods : Se- contest; it was strange that at that condly, that the apparent increase of period nineteen clerks were found expence in many of the public depart. sufficient to transact all the business ments connected with the navy was at the War-Office, and that now 147 occasioned by the introduction into should be found scarcely sufficient the estimates of many services, which for the same purpose. The ho. though before in existence, were not nourable gentleman then spoke of included therein ; by the increased the impolicy of keeping up a large duties which were to be performed, standing army in a time of peace, esin consequence of increased con. pecially as it was to cost the country, quests and colonial acquisitions; and in its present financial difficulties, no by the improvements which had been less a sum than L. 10,000,000 anmade for the ater facility of dis- nually. Under these circumstances, patching business in many depart. he should certainly vote in favour of