On a point of order, I wish to point out that the next item on the Agenda is the Slaughter of Cattle and Sheep Bill. Normally, considering the remarkable provisions for restrictions on the sale of cattle contained in this Bill, the House might reasonably ask, at a time when the normal Press facilities of the country are not available, that the discussion on the Second Reading of this Bill would be postponed until the country generally would be able to get an interpretation of the terms of the Bill and when there might be some exchange of public opinion on the matter. There is this additional point which I wish to raise as a point of order. The Bill as circulated discloses that a levy will be raised in respect of every beast slaughtered. That is, it proposes to impose a direct piece of taxation. In the first place, the long Title of the Bill, as disclosed to the House, did not show in any way that a levy of that particular kind was contemplated. When under the Agricultural Produce (Amendment) Cereals Act it was contemplated to propose a levy on the sale of wheat, that was definitely proposed in the long Title.
When the First Reading of the Slaughter of Cattle and Sheep Bill was proposed here, the House could not possibly understand that it was proposed to impose taxation by this Bill. This Bill proposing a levy seems to me to be an unprecedented departure from order. Before the circulation of this Bill was asked for, a Ways and Means Resolution ought to have been discussed in the House when the House would have an opportunity of discussing in Committee what this levy was, the extent of it, and for what exactly it was to be used. I submit that in the first place it has been an unprecedented departure from order to produce a Bill of this kind without a Ways and Means Resolution, and, secondly, that it would be out of order to proceed with the Bill until the House has an opportunity of discussing the proposals for imposing a levy in respect of the slaughter of animals in the absence of a Ways and Means Resolution being placed before the House.