Province of Canada, Legislative Council, Scrapbook Debates, 8th Parl, 5th Sess, (25 June 1866)
By: Province of Canada (Parliament)
Citation: Province of Canada, Parliament, Scrapbook Debates, 8th Parl, 5th Sess, 1866 at 24.
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MONDAY, June 25th, 1866.
The Speaker took the chair at 3 o’clock.
Hon. Sir N.F. Belleau moved the suspension of the 53rd Rule, in order to enable him to intorudce a bill to incorporate a Permanent Savings’ Bank at Quebec, as recommdned by the Private Bill Committee. Carried.
Manufacturing Peat into Coal.
Hon. Mr. Sanborn introduced a bill to enable P.H. Moore to obtain a patent for manufacturing peat into coal by process of steam.
Hon. Mr. Campbell said he would like the opportunity to explain a misapprehension which seemed to have grown out of some remarks he made in relation to patent rights upon a recent occasion. He did not know whether it had arisen out of the report of the debates, or in any other way, but it had been reported out of doors that the Government intended hereafter to pursue a different policy in respect of patent rights from that which had obtained in Canada in the past. Now he had not said on that occasion that the Government had determined to adopt any new policu on the subject, but that if the House thought proper he would suggest that henceforth every application for a patent should be treated upon its own merits, and if thought beneficial to the country that it should be granted.
Hon. Mr. Letellier de St. Just said something about the necessity of having applications of this kind published in the newspapers before they were presented to the Legislature, but his remarks, like many others mode by several other members in the course of the debate, were so imperfelct heard that it was difficult to understand even the general purpose of the remarks made, and to this cause may have been due the misapprehension of which Hon. Mr. Campbell spoke.
Hon. Mr. Campbell said that applicants for patents were obliged by law to do so. The merits of such bills would be discussed in the in the Private Bill Committee and the second reading was therefore a mere matter of form. It was not possible to discuss such things before hand. It might or might not be in the interests of the country that particular patents applied for should be granted. It would be the business of the Committee to ascertain, and the utmost publicicty should be given to the applications so that all should be informed, and be on the alert. The committee would then be able to deal intelligently with the facts, and after the fullest inquiry report their opinions to the House that it might safely deal with the Bills.
Hon. Mr. Letellier de St. Just said that as the law now stood it was very defective and the sooner it was altered the better. Why a British subject residing out of Canada could not obtain a patent any more than an an [sic] alien could.
Hon. Mr. Campbell was understood to say that after Confederation was accomplished the subject would no doubt be taken up, and such changes made as would meet the necessities of the case.
Hon. Mr. Bull spoke, but was not fully understood in the reporter’s seat. In the case of the patent recently applied for when a bill was also submitted to the House, the inventor was a British subject residing in New York.
Hon. Mr. Campbell said that the applicant in the former case was Mr. Harris, of the Montreal Bank, a British subject residing in Canada, and his brother, the inventor, was a British subject but resident in New York.
Hon. Mr. Sanborn thought the Private Bill Committee should at least have some idea of what was the tone of the House upon any subject that was referred to them. He had always thought our patent laws needed amendment, and ten or twelve years ago, when he was a member of the other Branch of the Legislature, he ahd introduced a Bill for that purpose. As the law was, it stood in the way of the country’s advancement. It mattered not in his opinion who applied for a patent, but whether the granting of it would promote the welfare of the country.
Hon. Mr. Moore was of opinion that the proper way to treat this matter would be for the Legislature to give the Government an enabling Act, so that they could themselves issue the patents asked for, when they were satisfied in relation to all the particulars connected with each case. He did not think that as it was, the Government should pledge itself to any particular course. All he asked was, that hey should not oppose the Bills, but let them be dealt with by the Legislature.
A good deal of discussion, very much in the same direction, took place, the greater part of which was ver imperfectly heard. Among others, Hon. Mr. Blair spoke, but not a syllable of what he said reached the reporters.
Hon. Mr. Le Tellier de St Just wanted to leave the subject in the hands of the Government, and said it was impossible for the Private Bill Committee to go to the bottom of all the facts, whereas the Government might require evidence to the Queen, on oath, before they granted the application.
Hon. Mr. Ryan also thought the onus thrown upon the Private Bill Committee altogether too great, as its members had already a great deal to do.
Hon. Mr. Bureau would like to know if the Government intended to introduce a measure after Confederation, to modify the Patent Laws.
Hon. Mr. Campbell said that as this was probably the last session of the Provincial Parliament, he thought the Private Bill ommittee might ery well deal with the measures of this character, which would be submitted to them.
After some further conversation, the Bill was read a second time and sent to the Private Bill Committee.
Hon. Mr. Simpson, from the Joint Committee on Priting, submitted a Report stating that the whole cost of printing last session was $14,580.46, which was but a very small proportion of the expense incurred by the House for this purpose, before the appointment of the Committee. The report also praised the manner in which the work had been done, the paper supplied by the Contractor, and the accounts kept by Mr. Hartney, the Clerk of the Committee. Report received and ordered to be taken under consideration on Wednesday next.
Hon. Mr. McMaster (in the absence of Hon. Mr. Allan) introduced a bill to vest vertain lands in the Churchwardens of St. James’ Church, Toronto. Second reading on Wednesday next.
Hon. Sir. N.f. belleau introduced a bill to extend and define the powers of the Savings’ Bank known as La Caisse d’Economie de Notre Dame de Quebec. Second reading on Wednesday.
Hon. Mr. Leonard introduced a bill to incorporate the Bank of London, C.W.—Second reading on Wednesday.
Hon. Mr. Currie inquired whether it is the intention of the Government to introduce a measure this session to legalize the recent approrpirations made bymunicipal corporations in Upper Cnada for the relief of volunteers.
Hon. Sir N.F. Belleau said it was the intention of the Government to do so.
Hon. Mr. Simpson moved that when the House adjourns on Thursday next, it stands adjourned until the Wednesday of the ensuing week.
A good deal of discussion arose upon this subject, the Government by the Ministry of Hon. Sir N.F. Belleau resisting the gentle force. In the course of the debate that Hon. member stated it was probable that the measures for the constitution of the local governments in Canada would be ready to be submitted before Wednesday of next week, and that it was desirable there should be at least a quorum to receive them. Anxious inquiries had been repeatedly made as to the course the Government intended to pursue in relation to the Fenian prisoners, and he thought that they would also be ready to state their views on that subject.
Hon. Mr. Christie moved in amendment that when the House adjourns on Wednesday next, it should adjourn until next Tuesday.
Hon. Mr. Alexander moved in amendment to the amendment that when the House adjourn on Thursday next it should adjourn until Monday. Lost without going to a division.
The amendment of Hon. Mr. Christie was then put and carried 31 to 18.
Pursuant to order the bill to amend the Commissioners Court of Lower Canada was read a third time and passed.
The following bills were read a second time without debate, and referred to committees.
Bill to amend the Act incorporating the St. Lawrence Navigation Company. Hon. Sir. N.F. Belleau.
Bill to authorize the Presbyterian Congregation of Wodostock, in connection with the church of Scotland, to sell certain lots of land.
Hon. Mr. Alexander.
Bill to authorize the corporation of the town of Belleville to purchase a lt for a ccemetry, and to exempt the Roman Catholics from being taxed on account of the same.
Hon. Mr. Campbell remarked that the proceeding proposed seemed rather unusual. The ordinary course was for Cemetry Companies to be formed, and to sell the lots which became the property of the families owning them in perpetuity. They could not be seizd nor were they subject to taxes, but the bill before the House seemed to him to go some way towards destroying the sacredness of burying places, by connecting them with taxation. He merely threw out these remarks so as to suggest to the Private Bill Committee, the inquiry when the bill came before them whether it were quite proper to legislate in that direction.
Hon. Mr. Bull said, the corporation fo Hamilton had done precisely the same, and as he was understood to say had repaid themselves the money expended upon the ground.
The bill was then read and referred.
House in Committee.
The House then went into Committee, Hon. Mr. Moore in the Chair, on the bill to regulate the sale of the wood reserves of the Iroquois Indians at Caughnawaga.
Hon. Mr. Campbell, referring to the progress already made in this measure, when the House was in committee before, said his hon. friend (Bureau) had become satisfied that the Agricultural Act of Lower Canada contained a clause which met the amendment he had proposed to make, and that it would therefore be only necessary to add a short clause to the bill as it now stood, to the effect that all cases of appeal from the decisions of Magistrates would be treated as provided in the said clause of the said act. Some minor amendment was also adopted.
The Committee then rose, and reported the bill with amendments. The amendments were concurred in and the bill as amended was ordered for a third reading to-morrow.
The House then adjourned.