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Metropolitan Improvements

Volume 48: debated on Friday 5 July 1839

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, seeing the right hon. Gentleman the Chancellor of the Exchequer in his place, begged to ask, in reference to the report of the Committee on Metropolitan Improvements, whether it was the intention of her Majesty's Government to introduce any bill this session founded on the recommendations of that report?

, in reply to the question of the right hon. Baronet, had to state that communications had been entered into by the Treasury, with the view of ascertaining whether, with reference to the public interests, they could act on the report and recommendations of the Committee. In consequence of the favourable nature of the answers received a bill had been prepared on the subject; but in the meantime he had discovered that a private bill had passed through the House, empowering the city of London to borrow money on the security of certain of the city funds for the improvements of the approaches to the new London-bridge. Such being the case, and that bill having gone almost to the stage of a third reading in the House of Lords, he had felt it to be his duty to take the opinion of the law officers of the Crown, whether that bill might not interfere with the intentions of the Government, and deprive the Treasury of their power to act as they had proposed. While perfectly ready to undertake what the Committee had recommended, he could not do so unless that could be effected without imposing additional cost upon the public. Therefore until he was assured that the city funds were perfectly adequate to the purposes for which they were sought to be applied under the provisions of that bill, without the imposition of new burdens, he should not proceed with the bill which he had prepared.