In my letter of the first of April, I had the honour to acquaint your Lordships of the death of Governor Dobbs and of my intentions to propose to his Majesty's Council, that the General Assembly of this province might meet at Newbern.
On the 3d April I sat in Council with the following gentlemen, Vidt
when I had the satisfaction to receive their unanimous opinion that a Proclamation should issue to summon the General Assembly to meet the 2d of May following at Newbern.
The Speaker of the Assembly made a House with twenty five members the 3d of May: the Journals of the Council and Assembly inclosed, with the Acts, will give your Lordships information of the proceedings of the General Assembly.
In my speech I proposed that the salaries for the Clergy should be paid by the public Treasurers, as that mode of payment I judged would have been a stronger inducement for young clergymen of merit to come over to the colony; the public faith of the province being more immediately pledged for the payment of the salaries, than when in the Vestry. However as the present law has provided a very summary way to obtain the salary, I am of opinion, the payment by the Vestry, is no ways objectionable, I was of the opinion too, that the mode of payment by the Treasurers from a general fund to be more equal than a tax raised by each parish, for their respective clergy, considering the great inequality in the number of inhabitants, in the different counties, or parishes; but this reasoning was not attended to, as the majority in the Assembly were the representatives of the lower counties
The certificate to be obtained from the Bishop of London, represented as requisite before presentation, is omitted in the Act, an omission that appears immaterial, unless his Lordship should consider it as a necessary ecclesiastical jurisdiction, and in this case, an instruction to the Governor might remedy that omission, Upon the whole I am inclined to believe your Lordships will find this Act as unexceptionably framed as any Clergy Act in any of his Majesty's colonies: If your Lordships should recommend it to his Majesty either to be confirmed, or remain in force till some trial may be had of its efficacy, the enclosed packet, enforced with your Lordships recommendation, I should wish might be sent to the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, When I receive your Lordships opinion on this Bill I will write to those of my private correspondence from
I must next observe that as no steps had been taken relative to the extract of your Lordships Journal of the 13th December 1763, which I mentioned in my letter of the 15th October 1764, to have delivered to the late Governor, and who could not give me the least account what were the objections referred to in it: I laid it the 11th of May before the House of Assembly; the result of which your Lordships will see by their Journals the 13th of the same month; when your Lordships honour me with the objections referred to, and they are removed by the Assembly: I see no obstacle to prevent his Majesty's allowing the Assembly's request for the application of the £18000 proclamation money, as directed by the 12th Sec of the Act passed in 1754 for granting to his Majesty the sum of forty thousand pounds in public bills of credit &ca I believe it will appear expedient to your Lordships that the £18000 may be applied as part of it is to purchase glebes and erect buildings for the ministers
As to the consideration recommended by the Earl of Halifax, of the General Post to be carried thro' this extensive continent; the sum allowed by Resolve of this session, may possibly be sufficient, to help to convey through this province, as tolerable good boats are established over all the ferries on the sea board route; and the roads good for horsemen.
An Act for facilitating the navigation of Port Bath, Port Roanoke and port Beaufort, I rejected; for that it contained a clause which directed a tax to answer the expence of clearing the navigation, to be laid on vessels entering the said ports, exempting such as wholly belonged to the inhabitants of this province.
The following is the clause abstracted from the Bill, “Be it enacted &ca that the following taxes should be paid by the master of each vessel, that shall enter into any of the said ports, except such vessels as are wholly owned by the inhabitants of this province, to the collectors of the respective ports, that is to say, for every vessel of fifty tons, or under, six shillings, for every vessel above fifty tons and under one hundred tons, twelve shillings, for every vessel above one hundred tons, twenty shillings.”
I construed this exception to be contrary to the 32d Article of the late Governors instructions
Your Lordships will observe on the last day of this Session the Council sent the following message to the Assembly, Vidt
Mr Speaker &c
This House desire all letters and papers received from the Agent in England since the last Session of Assembly, be sent for their perusal,
which message the Council informed me was not complied with. It seems the Committee of Correspondence with the Agent, is composed wholly of members of the Assembly: This is in express opposition to the sentiments communicated from your Lordships Board, in a letter to Governor Dobbs, bearing date the 1st of August 1759, Vizt
“The Committee of Correspondence ought to have consisted of some members of the Council, and not to have been entirely composed of the members of the House of Representatives.” If at the next Session of Assembly His Majesty's Council are not admitted to have some members in the Committee of correspondence, and also to have at all times, the same freedom of inspection into the Correspondence to, and from the Agent of the province, as the Assembly claim, I shall then submit it to your Lordships, if any representation or application presented by the Agent, coming solely from the Assembly, should not remain under a suspension, whether laid before his Majesty in Council or your Lordships Boards till the Council could be informed of the nature of such representation or application, and their opinion reported thereon.
The two Houses not coming to any agreement in the appointment of a Treasurer for the Southern District, vacated by the death of Mr Starkey, that the province might receive no detriment, I have commissioned Mr Samuel Swann the Treasurer during my pleasure, or until the end of the next session of Assembly; when the Legislature will either confirm my appointment, or make their nomination of a Treasurer. The hurry the Representatives were in to get to their plantations, was, I guess, the reason that they did not enter into an examination of their public funds; I shall however again recommend the necessity of such an enquiry. The Assembly stands prorogued to the 27th November next, to be then held at Newbern. In another packet I shall send the drafts of the line run between the