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the house.

Actions to be

15. Provided always, and be it further enacted, commenced Within one That, every indictment, information, or action, for any year after the offence against this act, shall be found, filed, or commenced months after within one year after commission of the fact on which such conclusion of indictment, information, or action shall be grounded, or proceedings in

within six months after the conclusion of any proceedings
in the house of commons relating to such election.
16.

Provided always, That, notwithstanding any thing in this act contained, it shall and may be lau ful for the sheriff of the county of Southampton, and he is hereby required, after any poll for the said county shall have closed at Winchester, and which shall always be closed within the space of fifteen days at the most, in the manner

above required, to adjourn the poll to Newport in the Isle Poll may be

of Wight, in case the same shall be required by one or adjourned more of the candidates, so that every such adjourned poil

shall commence within four days from the close of the poll port in the Isle at Winchester, and shall not continue longer than three ot' Wight, &c.

days at the most.

trom Winchester to New

Anno 260 GEORGII III. CAP. 100.
An Act to prevent occasional Inhabitants from voting in the

Election of Members to serre in Parliament, for Cities
and Boroughs, in that part of Great Britain called Eng-
land, and the Dominion of Wales.

A. D. 1786. WHEREAS it frequently happens, in cities and boroughs where the right of election of members to serve in parliament is in the inhabitants paying scot and lot, or in the inhabitants housebolders, housekeepers, and pot-wallers, legally settled, or in the inhabitants householders, housekeepers, and pot-wallers, or in the inhabitants householders resiants, or in the inhabitants within such cities or boroughs, that much trouble, expence, and litigation, is created by occasional voters, to the great prejudice of the real inhabitants, who bear the burthens of such cities and boroughs, and to whom the right of sending members to

parliament belongs: for remedy thereof, Be it enacted, From Aug. 1, &c. That from and after the first day of August, 1786, no 1786, any per- person shall be admitted to vote at any election of a meman inhabitant, ber or members to serve in parliament for any city or paying, scot' borough of that part of Great Britain called England, or who shall not the dominion of Wales, as an inhabitant paying scot and have been so 6 lot, or as an inhabitant householder, housekeeper, and potnontbs previ

waller, legally settled, or as an inhabitant householder, housekeeper, and pot-waller, or as an inhabitant householder resiant, or as an inhabitant of such city or borough, unless he shall have been actually and bona fide an inhabitant paying scot and lot, or an inhabitant householder, housekeeper, and pot-waller, legally settled, or an inha. bitant householder, housekeeper, and pot-waller, or an inhabitant householder resiant, or an inhabitant within such city or borough, six calendar months previous to the day of the election at which he shall tender his vote; and if any person shall vote at any such election, contrary to the true intent and meaning of this act, his vote shall be deemed null and void, and he shall forfeit, to any person who shall sue for the same, the sum of twenty pounds to be recovered by him or her, by action of debt, in any of his majesty's courts of record at Westminster, wherein no essoin, protection, wager of law, privilege, or imparlance, shall be admitted or allowed ; and in every such action the proof of inhabitancy, as aforesaid, shall lie upon the person against whom the same shall be brought : Provided nevertheless, That such action be commenced within six kalendar months after the cause of action accrued : Provided also, that nothing in this act contained shall ex- but not to extend, or be construed to extend, to any person acquiring sons acquinng the possession of any house, in any city or borough, by possession by descent, devise, marriage, or marriage settlement, or promotion to any office or benefice.

us to the lection, to forteit 201.;

2. PROVIDED also, and be it further enacted, That this act shall relate only to those persons who claim to exercise the franchise of voting as inhabitants paying scot and lot, or as inhabitants householders, housekeepers, and pot-wallers, legally settled, or as inhabitants householders, housekeepers and pot-wallers, or as inhabitants householders resiants, or as inhabitants within such cities, or nor to persons boroughs, and shall not extend to any other description of claiming a. persons who may claim to vote at any election for mem- under any bers to serve in parliament for such cities or boroughs, by other descrip. any other title, or by any other superadded qualification.

habitants pay.

ing scot and

lot. &c.

Anno 280 GEORGII III. CAP. 52.
An Act for the further Regulation of the Trials of controverted
Elections, or Returns of Members to serve in Parliament.

A. D. 1788.

Whereas, by an act of parliament passed in the 10th year of the reign of his present majesty, intituled, “ An act 10 G. 3. c. 16. to regulate the trials of controverted elections, or returns of members to serve in parliament,' certain regulations were established, for a time therein limited, for the trials of controverted elections, or returns of members to serve in parliament; and whereas, by an act passed in the 11th year of 11 G. 3. c. 42. the reign of his present majesty, intituled, “ An act to explain and amend an act made in the last session of parliament, intituled, an act to regulate the trials of controverted elections, or returns of members to serve in parliament,' further regulations were made therein; and whereas the provisions of the said acts were, by an act passed in the 14th year of the reign of his present majesty, continued and and 25: 3

. made perpetual; and whereas, by an act passed in the 25th year of the reign of his present majesty, intituled, 'An act to limit the duration of polls and scrutinies, and for making other regulations touching the election of members to serve in parliament for places within England and Wales, and for Berwick upon Tweed, and also for removing difficulties

of an undue election or return to be pro

scribed as

tioned.

which may arise for want of returns being made of members to serve in parliament,' the provisions of the said acts were extended, in the manner therein mentioned, to petitions complaining that no return has been made to a writ, issued for the election of a member or members to serve in parliament, within the times limited in the said act, or that such return is not a return of a member or members according to the requisition of the writ; and whereas it is expedient that further regulations should be made for the execution of the said several acts, and that provision should be made for discouraging persons from presenting frivolous or vexatious petitions, or setting up frivolous or vexatious defences, in any of the cases to which the above-recited acts relate, and that provision should also be made for the final decision of questions respecting the rights of voting at such elections, or of nominating or appointing the returning officer or re

turning officers, who are to preside thereat: be it therefore No petition complaining enacted, &c. That no petition complaining of an undue

election or return, or of the omission of a return, or of the

insufficiency of a return, shall be proceeded upon, in the ceeded upon, manner prescribed in the said above recited acts, unless the

same shall be subscribed by some person or persons claimherein-inen- ing therein to have had a right to vote at the election to

which the same shall relate, or to have had a right to be returned as duly elected thereat, or alledging himself or themselves to have been a candidate or candidates at such election: provided always, That in any case where a writ has been issued for the election of a member to serve in parliament for any district of burghs in that part of Great Britain called Scotland, any such petition as aforesaid shall and may be so proceeded upon, if the same shall be subscribed by any person or persons claiming therein to bave had a right to vote at the election of any delegate or delegates, commissioner or commissioners, for choosing a burgess for such district.

2. AND be it further enacted, That if, at any time before the day appointed for taking any such petition into con

sideration, the speaker of the house of commons shall be inIn the cases formed, by a certificate in writing, subscribed by two of the fied, notice to members of the said house, of the death of the sitting memlite sent by the ber or sitting members, or either of them, whose election or returning of return is complained of in such petition, or of the death of place to which any member or members returned upon a double return, any such pe- whose election or return is complained of in such petition, tition relates,

or that a writ of summons has been issued, under the great seal of Great Britain, to summon any such member or members to parliament as a peer of Great Britain; or if the house of commons shall have resolved that the seat of any such member is by law become vacant; or if the said house shall be informed, by a declaration in writing, subscribed by such member or members, or either of them, as the case shall be, and delivered in at the table of the house, that it is not the intention of such member or members to defend his or their election or return; in every such case notice thereof shall'immediately be sent by the speaker to the

the county or

the Gazette.

Within 30

sheriff, or other returning officer for the county, borough, or place to which such petition shall relate, and such shériff A copy thereof or other returning officer shall cause a true copy of the same on the doors of to be affixed on the doors of the county hall or town hall, or

town hall, or of the parish church nearest to the place where such elec- nearest church tion has usually been beld, and such notice shall also be and inserted in inserted, by order of the speaker, in the next London Gazette; and the order for taking such petition into considera- Order for tion shall, if necessary, be adjourned, so that at the least taking such thirty days may intervene between the day on which such consideration notice shall be inserted in the said Gazette, and the day on journed. which such petition shall be taken into consideration

3. And be it enacted, That it shall and may be lawful days after no. at any time within thirty days after the day on which such tice is so innotice shall have been inserted in the said Gazette, for any Gazette, any person or persons claiming to have had a right to vote at voter may pesuch election, or at the election of delegates or commissioners admitted a for making such election, to petition the house, praying to party in the

complaint. be admitted as a party or parties, in the room of such member or members, or either of them; and such person or persons shall thereupon be so admitted as a party or parties, and shall be considered as such, to all intents and purposes whatever. 4. And be it enacted, That whenever the member or ing notice of

Members giv. members, whose election or return is so complained of in their intention such petition, shall bave given such notice as aforesaid of their election, bis or their intention not to defend the same, he or they not to be adshall not be admitted to appear or act as a party or parties ties against against such petition, in any subsequent proceedings there any such pe

tition, &c. upon, any thing in the above recited acts to the contrary notwithstanding : and he or they shall also be restrained from sitting in the house, or voting in any question, until such petition shall have been decided upon in the manner prescribed by the above recited acts and by this act.

No proceed5. And be it further enacted, That no proceeding shall ings to be haut be had upon any petition, by virtue of the above recited upon any pe. acts or of this act, unless the person or persons subscribing one of the the same, or some one or more of them, shall, within four- enter into a teen days after the same shall have been presented to the recognizance house, or witbin such further time as shall be limited by fore the house the house, personally enter into a recognizance to our sove- at the time reign lord the king, according to the form hereunto annexed, ing it into conin the sum of two hundred pounds, with two sufficient sideration: sureties, in the sum of one hundred pounds each, to appear cognizance be before the house at such time or times as shall be fixed by duly entered the house for taking such petition into consideration, and for taking the also to appear before any select committee which shall be petitition into appointed by the house for the trial of the same, and to re- to be disnew the same in every subsequent session of parliament, until charged, uua select committee shall have been appointed by the house shall be seen for the trial of the same, or unitl the same shall have been for enlarging

the time, &c. withdrawn by the permission of the house; and if, at the expiration of the said fourteen days, such recognizance shall not have been so entered into, or shall not have been received by the speaker of the house of commons, the speaker shall

the persons herein men

report the same to the house, and the order for taking such petition into consideration shall thereupon be discharged, unless, upon matter specially stated and verified to the satisfaction of the house, the house shall see cause to enlarge the time for entering into such recognizance; and whenever such time shall be so enlarged, the order for taking such petition into consideration shall, if necessary, be postponed, so that no such petition shall be so taken into consideration till after such recognizance shall have been entered into and received by the speaker: provided always, That the time for entering into such recognizance shall not be enlarged more

than once, nor for any number of days exceeding thirty. Recog

6. And be it enacted, That the said recognizances shall nizances to be be entered into before the speaker of the house of combefore the mons, who is hereby authorized and empowered to take the the sutticiency same; and the sufficiency of the sureties named therein shall of the suretis be judged of and allowed by the said speaker, on the reof by him, on port of two persons appointed by him to examine the same, the report of of which two persons the clerk, or clerk assistant of the

house, shall always be one, and one of the following officers, tioned. not being a member of the said house, shall be the other;

(that is to say) masters of the high court of chancery, clerks in the court of king's bench, prothonotaries in the court of common pleas, and clerks in the court of exchequer; and the said persons so appointed are hereby authorized and required to examine the same, and to report their judgment thereupon; and are also hereby authorized to demand and receive such fees, for such examination and report, as shall be, from time to time, fixed by any resolution of the house of commons.

7. PROVIDED always, and be it further enacted, That

in case where the party or parties, who are to enter into Sureties living such recognizance, or his or their sureties, or either of them, iniles from shall reside at a greater distance from London, than forty London may miles, it shall and may be lawful for such party or parties, nizance before surety or sureties, respectively, to enter into such recoga justice. nizance before any of his majesty's justices of the peace;

and his majesty's justices of the peace, or any of them, is and are hereby authorized and empowered to take the same; and such recognizance, being duly certified under the hand of such justice, and being transmitted to the speaker of the house of commovs, shall have the same force and effect as if the same had been entered into before the said speaker: Provided also, that it shall and may be lawful for the persons to whom it is referred by the speaker to examine the sufficiency of such surety or sureties, to receive as evi

dence, in their said examination, any affidavits relating Affidavits thereto, which shall be sworn before any master of the high made before a court of chancery, or before any of his majesty's justices of chancery, or a the peace ; and such master of the high court of chancery, justice, to be received as

or justice of the peace, respectively, is hereby authorized to evidence of administer such oath, and is authorized and required to the sufficiency

certify such affidavit under his hand.

8. And be it enacted, That the house shall not permit any such petition to be withdrawn, except so far as the

more than 40

of sureties.

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