21st January 1870
My Lord,
Your Lordship's Confidential Despatch of 19th May last instructed my predecessor to consider carefully and report whether it would not be advisable either to reduce the Salaries of future holders of Offices under the Crown SalariesActManuscript image Act 1863, or to abolish some of those Offices in case a proposal to that effect should hereafter be carried in the Council. This Despatch arrived after Mr Seymour's death and has hitherto remained unanswered.
2. With regard to the question of reduction of Salary I have no hesitation whatever in recording my opinion that estimated by the cost at which the ordinary comforts of life may be procured in differentplacesManuscript image places, the Salaries of all Officers in this Government, with perhaps the single exception of the Governor, are lower than in any Colony with which I am acquainted. The Colonial Secretary, and the Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works receive the highest amounts, £800, except the Salaries of the Chief Justice, and the Governor. I know that this sum is not equal here, to £400, in any of the Eastern Provinces, nor to much more than £500 in most WestIndianManuscript image Indian Governments. I could not recommend that the Salary should be reduced if the Office is still considered necessary.
3. Dr Helmcken, whose motion in the Legislative Council caused Your Lordship's enquiry, is now a Member of the Council of Government. He does not, now at all events, wish to touch the emoluments of existing incumbents. I have explained to him my opinion, and also pointed out,whatManuscript image what is probably of more importance in its bearing upon the question, that it would be purposeless to enter upon any discussion of future provisions, while the question of Union with Canada is under consideration; because the whole legislative and official organization of the Colony must be recast and the expense of a large part of the Civil Establishment would be assumed by the Government of the Dominion, in the event ofsuchManuscript image such Union.
4. The propriety of abolishing any of the Offices which in any case are not or would not be required is another question. The Act provides for—The Governor, Chief Justice of the Mainland, Colonial Secretary, Attorney General, Chief Commr of Lands & Works, Collector of Customs, Chief Inspector of Police, and Registrar General.
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5. I assume that until the Union of the Colony with the Dominion, the office of Governor will be necessary.
6. The difficulties which have arisen from the existence of two Chief Justices in the Colony have formed already the subject of much correspondence with Your Lordship's Department. I should be very glad if it may be rendered possible to abolish one of these Offices by provision being made elsewhere for one of the existingJudgesManuscript image Judges.
7. The Colonial Secretary, Attorney General, Chief Commissioner of Lands and Works, and Collector of Customs, hold Offices which cannot be dispensed with; and the only two about which there can be question are those of the Chief Inspector of Police and the Registrar General. These Offices are useless. But as regards the first of these two, the services of the present holder of theappointmentManuscript image appointment, Mr Brew, have been made available as a Magistrate; though the arrangements found convenient for the public service have produced the absurd anomaly that he is stationed at Cariboo and draws the Salary appropriated by annual Vote for the Magistrate of that District, while another Magistrate at New Westminster draws his Salary, provided by the Crown Salaries Act for a Chief Inspector of Police who so far as I know was neverrequired.Manuscript image required. Although, however, the Office might be abolished the amount of the Salary could not thereby be saved as it is now paid and would still be required for the services of the Magistrate.
8. With regard to the last case, that of the Registrar General, I am of opinion, from which I believe there is little dissent, that it is desirable to consolidate the Registration Ordinances and assimilate the systems ofRegistryManuscript image Registry in the two Sections of the Colony; and that one Office only is required, which should be at Victoria. The provisions of the Vancouver Island Law which is preferable in its general character requires that the Registrar should be a barrister, and Mr Alston the present Incumbent is in every way well qualified to discharge the duties for the United Colony. I propose to introduce an Ordinance during the next Session and after its passage if YourLordshipManuscript image Lordship approves of the measure, the Office of Registrar General of the Mainland will practically be abolished.
9. It would be hard upon Mr Bushby who at present holds this appointment that he should be summarily dismissed from an Office which he had a right to regard as protected by Law from any change, and I shall therefore endeavour to secure him other employment and the continuance of the sameSalaryManuscript image Salary until his case has been brought under Your Lordship's notice. But there is no doubt, so far as his Office and the Colony are concerned, that he is a supernumerary Official. I wish that I had a suitable appointment to offer to him, for I believe that he might be recommended with confidence to Your Lordship for almost any in this Government both as regards character and capacity; but Your Lordship knows thepositionManuscript image position of affairs in this Government, and except as an additional Stipendiary Magistrate, for whom I doubt the willingness of the Legislative Council permanently to provide, I should be unable to find employment for Mr Bushby. Under these circumstances I recommend him to Your Lordship's favorable consideration for an appointment in some other Government.
I have the honor to be
My Lord,
Your most obedient
humble Servant
A. Musgrave
Minutes by CO staff
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Mr Herbert
The only question now is whether Lord Granville has any place at his disposal to which Mr Bushby could be appointed. His present Salary is £500. As regards Mr Bushby himself see 6302. To Mr Meade.
CC 24/2
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Mr Meade
I have noted these Papers for your consideration on the occurrence of future Vacancies.
RGWH Feb 24/70
WM 24/2
RM 4/3