The conseil colonial, besides its advisory functions, discusses and votes the budget, determines the nature of the taxes, has supreme control over the tariffs, and extensive powers in the administration of colonial domains.
Another disturbing influence has been the high protective tariffs, adopted during the closing years of the century, which increased the costs of living more rapidly than the wages for labour, and compelled thousands of immigrants to seek employment elsewhere.
The questions which would claim the exercise of such a jurisdiction appear to be (I) intercolonial tariffs and the coasting trade; (2) railways, roads, canals, and other such works running through any two of the colonies; (3) beacons and lighthouses on the coast; (4) intercolonial gold regulations; (5) postage between the said colonies; (6) a general court of appeal from the courts of sucn colonies; (7) a power to legislate on all other subjects which may be submitted to them by addresses from the legislative councils and assemblies of the colonies, and to appropriate to any of the above-mentioned objects the necessary sums of money, to be raised by a percentage on the revenues of all the colonies interested."
Telegraphic money orders were established in 1850; a cable was laid between Dover and Calais, and in November 1851 the stock exchanges of London and Paris were able for the first time to compare prices during business hours of the same day; numerous companies were formed, some of which were independent of the railways, and keen competition led to considerable extensions of wires and reduction of tariffs, with the result that a large increase in the volume of business took place.
The rise of the industry has been favored by protective tariffs and by a system of excise which allows a considerable premium to manufacturers.
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