Die Martis, 12 Martii, 1649.
AN Act for the better Packing of Butter, and Redress of Abuses therein, was this Day read the
Third time; and, upon the Question, passed; and ordered to be printed and published.
Ordered, That the several Acts of Parliament; the one
intituled, An Act for selling the Fee-farm Rents belonging to the Commonwealth of England, formerly payable
to the Crown of England, Duchy of Lancaster, and Duchy of Cornwall; and the other Act, intituled, An Act
for the better Packing of Butter, and redress of Abuses
therein; be proclaimed in every Market Town in the
several Counties of this Commonwealth.
Ordered, That Mr. Speaker do sign Letters, as formerly, to be sent to the Judges of the several Circuits,
for Suppressing of Tumults, arising by reason of the
Mr. Miles Corbett reports from the Committee of Excise, the Certificate of the Commissioners for Excise:
Which was this Day read; and followeth in hæc verba:
"To the Right honourable the Committee of Parliament for regulating the Excise;"
"The humble Certificate of the Commissioners of the
"That, although we are Witnesses of the unwearied
Pains which your Honours have now above a Twelvemonth, almost every Day, taken, to put the Excise in
such Order, as might at once both render it easy and acceptable to the People, and serviceable to the State, according as might be reasonably expected from such a Revenue, so equally distributed, and almost made insensible;
all which we have also endeavoured, on our Parts, to improve to the uttermost, that, at length, the State might
reap the Fruits thereof, and the Way be made clear to
that intended Benefit of the People, in easing them, as
far as the Public could bear, in other Taxes: Yet now
finding, by Experience, that all is like to become fruitless, especially as to the Country, whose Excise consists
most in Beer and Ale (far the greatest Part of the whole
Revenues), upon which the State can rely for any considerable Supply, we have found it our Duties to certify
to this honourable Committee, the true State of this Receipt, as to Beer and Ale; which, we humbly trust, will
be both favourably interpreted by your Honours, and
some speedy and effectual Remedy and Settlement found
out, and resolved on, that the People, from the Delay,
and several Alterations in this Receipt, may no longer
take occasion to hope, that this Payment is deserted by
the Parliament; which Belief is almost settled in them by
such, who, throughout the Land, are disaffected to this
Commonwealth, and are ready, on all Hands, to omit
no Opportunity to work the Vulgar to an Impatience of
any thing which proceeds from the Wisdom and Authority of Parliament: And we the rather find ourselves necessitated to give this Account, because we foresee, that
the Parliament, as well as your Honours, may, perhaps,
expect some Return at this Half Year's Account, the
Twenty-fifth present, what Effects the late Act, passed in
August last, may have produced in the Country: We
have already, and almost weekly, as they came to our
Hands, acquainted your Honours, what Issue the Course,
appointed by the said Act for Assessors of private Families for their Consumption in Beer and Ale, returnable
to the Justices of the Peace in every Division, hath had;
by which, if there were nothing else, it is so evident,
what the Country would do, and contribute to the State,
if they were left to themselves; and what Patronage this
Receipt, and the Collectors thereof, are like to have:
This is apparent, as to the Matter of the Receipt, That
whereas, with good Reason, it was expected, that, when
the Country should be their own Assessors, and Collectors,
and Witnesses, how all they paid came clear to the State's
Cash, they would have, by an equal and just Assessment,
at least doubled, if not trebled, that which before, with
much Charge, and through the Country's Averseness to
the Excise, could be collected by the Officers of the Excise: Their Roll of private Families brewing their own
Beer, doth not reach to a Third of what was collected in
the Course pursued according to former Ordinances; nay,
in some Counties, they have rendered it not worth the
Collecting: And, since this honourable Committee hath
been upon reducing this Receipt to the former Course,
something rectified: and that our Sub Commissioners
have, upon Intimation from us, sought to improve the
Receipt, as well as they could, without relation to the
Rolls returned, the Country will by no means comply;
and so, on all Hands, especially in the remoter Counties,
Sub Commissioners are at a Stand: All which we humbly pray may be considered, and remain before your
Honours, that we may not be found to have neglected
our Duties. And this further we could not omit to add,
That great Arrears are ready for Collection in the Country: There wants only, that the Parliament declare the
Manner, and require an exact Conformity of all Men to
their Acts and Ordinances."
"All which, nevertheless, we humbly submit to this
"9 Martii 1649."
"Tho. Foote, Mayor.
Ale and Beer.
The House this Day resumed the Debate upon the Bill
touching the Way of collecting the Excise for Ale and
Beer brewed and spent in private Families.
Propositions offered for the better regulating the Excise
of Ale and Beer were this Day read.
Ordered, That the said Propositions be committed to
the Committee touching the Excise: And that the Committee present their Opinion therein to the House.
The Question being put, That these Words; viz.
"or not exceeding the Number of Ten Persons to be
computed for the Consumption and spending a Barrel of
Ale or Beer by the Week, in private Families, that
brew their own Ale and Beer, and do not sell or retale
the same;" and these Words, "after the Proportion of
Ten Persons to be computed for the Consumption and
spending a Barrel of Ale or Beer by the Week;" do
stand in the Bill;
It passed with the Negative.
Resolved, That Mr. Speaker do take the Chair Tomorrow at Eleven of Clock: And that then the House
do proceed with the Debate on this Bill.
High Court of Justice.
Resolved, That, after the Business of the Excise, the
Bill touching the Court of Justice be reported.
Colonel Stapeley reports from the Council of State, an
Extract of a Letter from the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland,
debated 5 Martii 1649: Which was read.
He likewise reports from the said Council, That, for
the effectual Carrying on of the Service of Ireland, they
find, that it will be necessary, that some considerable Sum
of Money may be speedily provided for that purpose;
and, having considered by what Way it may be done,
to the most Advantage of that Service, they are of Opinion, That it be offered unto the House, that the Estates
of those Delinquents which were, by an Ordinance of
Parliament, formerly committed to some Feoffees, in
Trust for the Raising of Money for the Irish Service,
may be now declared to be sold outright; and the Monies, which shall be raised upon such Sale, to be employed only to the carrying on of the Service of Ireland.
Resolved, That it be referred to the Council of State,
to confer with the Committee at Goldsmiths Hall; and
thereupon, that such of the Members of that Council, as
are Members of this House, do bring in a Bill for the
Sale of the Estates of all Delinquents, or such of them
as shall be fit to be presently sold.