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application is intended to be made; which map or plan shall describe the line of such intended road or alteration, and the lands through which the same is intended to be carried; together with a book of reference, containing the list of the names of the owners, or reputed owners, and occupiers of such lands respectively." Where diversions or branches are to be made, or the road is to be widened, the map should describe them, or show the spot.
'It is incumbent on the clerks of the peace to make a memorial of the time when such plan and book of reference was lodged in their respective offices, and to permit such documents to be inspected and copied, &c. at all seasonable hours. But it is the duty of the person soliciting the bill, to see that a duplicate of the map or plan so deposited at the office of the clerk of the peace, as also the lists of assents and dissents before mentioned, be in due time lodged in the Private Bill Office of the House of Commons; and the receipt acknowledged by one of the Clerks of that office, which must be done before any petition for the bill can be presented.
'Another standing order of the House requires that an estimate of the proposed expense of the undertaking, signed by the person or persons making the same; and an account of the money subscribed for carrying the work into execution, and the names of the subscribers, with the sums respectively subscribed by them, be lodged in like manner in the Private Bill Office.
'It is at this period that application is usually made to owners of lands, including the owners and occupiers of plantations, gardens, and pleasure grounds, which are to be taken for the purposes of the Act.
'The petition is now to be presented to the House for leave to bring in the bill. The signatures to the petition will differ, as its prayer and object varies. If the application to Parliament be to make a new turnpike-road, it must be signed by some of the principal owners and occupiers of estates through or near which the road is intended to be carried. If it be to vary or alter the line of any turnpike-road already made, or continue to extend a former Act or Acts, then the petition must be signed by some of the commissioners appointed under, or by virtue of such Act or Acts. In the former of these two cases, the petition falling within the description of those which are to be carried on by tolls or duties to be levied on the subject," &c. according to the standing order of the 28th of February, 1734, will be referred to a committee.
'Not so, if the petition pray to bring in a bill for the sole purpose of extending the term for the execution of the existing powers and provisions of any turnpike Act; and if no alterations or amend
ments are to be made in the powers and provisions of such Act, and no new clauses are to be introduced in such bill, except such as are required to be inserted in all turnpike Acts, by the standing orders of the two Houses of Parliament, or if the object of the application be the simple consolidation of any two or more turnpike trusts into one and the same trust,1 or if the petition is for extending the term of the trusts so consolidated,2 then it shall not be necessary to refer such petition to a committee, but the bill may be ordered to be brought in pursuant to the prayer of such petition, and the committee on the bill shall examine whether the standing orders have been complied with. In like manner, the standing order of 1734 has been repealed, so far as relates to petitions for bills to continue or amend any Act for making, maintaining, keeping in repair, or improving any turnpike-road, by a standing order of the last session of Parliament.
'It is an instruction to the committee on the petition, that they do, in the first place, examine how far the preceding orders have been complied with, and report the same to the House. The person, therefore, who affixed the notices, made the application to the parties interested, and deposited the map and book of reference at the office of the clerk of the peace, must attend in person, and produce the copy of the notices, the county papers in which they were inserted, the Gazettes, &c.
'The plan, the answers to applications, the estimate of expenses, and the signature of the person making it, the list of subscribers, and sums respectively subscribed by them, must all be successively proved; and it must be shown, that the map or plan, book of reference, lists of owners and occupiers, estimate of expense, and subscription list, were all lodged pursuant to the orders in the Private Bill Office.
'The solicitor will then be called upon to prove the allegations of the petition, and if any former Acts were referred to in it, a copy printed by the King's printer should be produced. This done, a report will be made from the committee, and leave given to bring in the bill.
'It is now proper to notice what provisions are required to be contained in the bill itself, and these are,
'1st. A clause to prevent any person nominated as a commissioner from acting or voting in the business of the said turnpike,
1 In both these cases, by the same order, the bill is to be considered, as to payment of fees, as a single bill.
2 In this case, the bill is to be considered, as to the payment of fees, as a double bill.
unless he be possessed of an estate in land or personal estate to a certain value, specified in such bill: and the qualification is extended to heirs apparent of persons possessed of an estate in land to a certain value, to be specified.
2ndly. That in all bills for making or altering a turnpikeroad, there be inserted a clause for compelling subscribers to make payment of the sums severally subscribed by them.
'3dly. That there be also a clause obliging the commissioners or trustees to take security from their treasurer or receiver, for the faithful execution of his office.
'Besides these provisions, which are essential to the bill, it is sometimes thought expedient to give a power, in case a change in the line of road should become advisable, to effect exchanges of land for this purpose.
'The usual time to go into the committee on the bill, is when a month has expired after the presentation of the petition.
'Before the committee in both Houses, the allegations of the preamble must be proved; where the application is to make a new road, or a new branch, or to divert or widen a road, the estimate signed by the surveyor, the lists of subscribers, the map and plan, and an account of the tolls expected to be collected, should be brought forward.
'By a standing order of 1811, all maps or plans of road prepared for the use of the House, shall be upon the scale of one inch to a mile. Where the plan is found defective, or requires to be varied, owing to any changes in the bill, the committee has power to effect the alteration, the chairman marking the same with his initials.
'Persons concerned or interested in bills for making or repairing, or for widening or diverting any turnpike-road, are allowed to signify that consent to the bill by affidavit taken and authenticated according to the form prescribed by the General Turnpike Act, 3 Geo. 4. c. 126. This act contains many clauses applicable to, and that are intended to control, the provisions of all special turnpike Acts, and thereby renders the introduction of such clauses into special Acts no longer necessary, and consequently saves great expense.
Where it is sought to amend or alter a former act, or where the application is for the extension of an existing term of years, the duration of the term in existence will necessarily appear; and it will accordingly be decided, whether the term in existence shall be determined, and a new term granted, to commence from the passing of the amended act, or whether a further term will be
granted to commence upon the expiration of the existing term. If the tolls are meant to be increased, it should be shown in what proportion such increase is to be made; and at all events the state of the accounts, the receipts, and expenditures, and debts on the credit of the tolls, ought to be produced before the committee. In case of exchanges of land made by virtue of the bill as before mentioned, Parliament requires the owners and occupiers of the lands to be given in exchange, to subscribe their signatures to the bill, and such signatures to be proved by a person who saw them subscribed.
"It remains only to notice, before concluding this account of the proceedings on road bills, the additional forms required by the standing orders of the House of Lords. The notices to be proved are the same in both Houses, except that the order of the Lords requiring the notices to be fixed on the doors of the session-house remains unrepealed. The mention of the names of the parishes and townships through which the road is intended to be carried, is peremptorily required by the order of both Houses. An estimate of the probable time within which the whole of such work may be completed, is further required by the Lords to be annexed to the map or plan. Also it is ordered:
That no bill for any turnpike-road whereby power shall be given to make a new road, or to alter or vary the line of road before used, for any space exceeding one hundred yards, shall be read a third time in this House, unless previously to such bill being brought to this House from the Commons, a map or plan of such intended new road, or of any intended alteration in any road already made, (as the case may be,) shall have been deposited with the clerk of the Parliament; in which map or plan shall be described the line of such intended new road, or of such intended alteration, and the lands through which the same is intended to be carried, together with a book of reference, containing a list of the names. of the owners, or reputed owners, and also the occupiers of such lands respectively; and that there be also annexed to the said map or plan an estimate of the expense of such undertaking, (in cases where provision is intended to be made for raising money to defray such expense,) such estimate to be signed by the person or persons making the same; and if such money is proposed to be raised by subscription, that there be also annexed to the said map or plan an account of the money subscribed for that purpose, and the names of the subscribers, with the sums by them subscribed respectively and there shall also be annexed to such map or plan an estimate of the probable time within which the whole of such work may be completed, if not prevented by inevitable accident.'
The order of the Lords relative to the payment of purchase money into the Bank, applies to road bills, where money is, under the provision of such Act, to be laid out in the purchase of other lands, &c., and must be construed, reddendo singula singulis; the allowance for inclosure and drainage being referable only to bills for such purposes.' pp. 331-338.
The expense of obtaining private acts in Great Britain, is, as might be expected, very serious. The causes of this great expense are rendered quite apparent by the following passages from our author:
The fees in the House of Lords were established by a table in the year 1725, and revised and approved in the year 1824. A valuable report of a select committee of the House of Lords upon the fees and charges payable upon private bills, was ordered to be printed on the 12th of June, 1827. From such report, it appears, that the fees incurred by parties to private bills in the House of Lords, although the rate of fees is in some respects higher, are, however, greatly less in the total amount, than the fees paid upon the same bills in the House of Commons. This is owing in part to the circumstance, that any opposition made to such bills usually takes place whilst the bill is in the House of Commons, and in part also to the fees in that House for ingrossing the bill. The method, say the Lord's committee, of charging fees upon the ingrossment of bills, at the same rate per press, whether the number of folios contained in each press be many or few, has led to much unnecessary expense and great inconvenience; the ingrossing clerks writing in a large, loose, and irregular hand, so as to increase the number of presses and their amount of profits, and bills being rendered unnecessarily cumbrous, and filling the repositories of these records in a manner highly inconvenient to the public.
'The rate of charge by the several parliamentary agents, for the services which they render to their employers, is not regulated by any known or uniform standard, but varies with different agents, which occasioned the select committee of the Lords to recommend to that House, that there should be established by law a power to audit and tax the charges of all parliamentary agents, when required by the parties concerned. The statute 6 Geo. 4. c. 123,1 was enacted for similar purposes with respect to the House of Commons. This was rendered the more necessary, as the rate of charges seems to have increased considerably of late years; which
1 An Act to establish a taxation of costs on private bills in the House of Commons, and to prohibit the sale of certain offices under the serjeant-at arms attending the House of Commons.'