country and urban authorities for the organization of schemes for technical instruction in non-agricultural subjects—these subjects embracing not only preparation for the highly organized industries but the teaching of such rural industries as basket-making, (3) the training of teachers by classes held at various centres, (4) the provision of central institutions, and (5) the awarding ofscholarships.
Revenue and Expenditure.—The early statistics as to revenue and expenditure in Ireland are very fragmentary and afford little possibility of comparison. During the first 15 years of Elizabeth’s reign the expenses of Ireland, chiefly on account of wars, amounted, according to Sir James Ware’s estimate, to over £490,000, while the revenue is put by some writers at £8000 per annum and by others at less. In the reign of James I. the customs increased from £50 to over £9000; but although he obtained from various sources about £10,000 a year and a considerable sum also accrued from the plantation of Ulster, the revenue is supposed to have fallen short of the expenditure by about £16,000 a year. During the reign of Charles I. the customs increased fourfold in value, but it was found necessary to raise £120,000 by yearly subsidies. According to the report of the committee appointed by Cromwell to investigate the financial condition of Ireland, the revenue in 1654 was £197,304 and the expenditure £630,814. At the Restoration the Irish parliament granted an hereditary revenue to the king, an excise for the maintenance of the army, a subsidy of tonnage and poundage for the navy, and a tax on hearths in lieu of feudal burdens. “Additional duties” were granted shortly after the Revolution. “Appropriate duties” were imposed at different periods; stamp duties were first granted in 1773, and the post office first became a source of revenue in 1783. In 1706 the hereditary revenue with additional duties produced over £394,000.
Irish parliament in 1730. From special returns to parliament the following table shows net income and expenditure over a series ofyears up to 1868:—
under various heads for the five years 1902-1906 appears in thefollowing tables:—
|Voted.||Local Taxation Accounts.||Total
| Estimated |
| Exchequer |
true revenue it would appear from the foregoing table that Ireland contributed to imperial services in the years under consideration the following sums: £2,570,000, £2,852,000, £2,200,500, £2,186,500and £1,811,500.
The financial relations between Great Britain and Ireland have long been a subject of controversy, and in 1894 a royal commission was appointed to consider them, which presented its report in 1896. The commissioners, though differing on several points, were practically agreed on the following five conclusions: (1) that Great Britain and Ireland must, for the purposes of a financial inquiry, be considered as separate entities; (2) that the Act of Union imposed upon Ireland a burden which, as events showed, she was unable to bear; (3) that the increase of taxation laid upon Ireland between 1853 and 1860 was not justified by the then existing circumstances; (4) that identity of rates of taxation did not necessarily involve equality of burden; (5) that, while the actual tax revenue of Ireland was about one-eleventh of that of Great Britain, the relative taxable capacity of Ireland was very much smaller, and was not estimated by any of the commissioners as exceeding one-twentieth. This report furnished the material for much controversy, but little practical outcome; it was avowedly based on the consideration of Ireland as a separate country, and was therefore inconsistent with the principles of Unionism.
The public debt of Ireland amounted to over £134,000,000 in 1817, in which year it was consolidated with the British national debt.
effected considerable changes in local finance. The fiscal duties of the grand jury were abolished, and the county council which took the place of the grand jury for both fiscal and administrative purposes was given three sources of revenue: (1) the agricultural grant, (2) the licence duties and other imperial grants, and (3) the poor rate. These may be considered separately. (1) It was provided that the Local Government Board should ascertain the amount of county cess and poor rate levied off agricultural land in Ireland during the year ending (as regards the poor rate) on the 29th of September, and (as regards the county cess) on the 21st of June 1897; and that half this amount, to be called the agricultural grant, should be paid annually without any variation from the original sum out of the consolidated fund to a local taxation account. The amount of the agricultural grant was ascertained to be over £727,000. Elaborate provisions were also made in the act for fixing the proportion of the grant to which each county should be entitled, and the lord-lieutenant was empowered to pay half-yearly the proportion so ascertained to the county council. (2) Before the passing of the act grants were made from the imperial exchequer to the grand juries in aid of the maintenance of lunatics and to boards of guardians for medical and educational purposes and for salaries under the Public Health (Ireland) Act. In 1897 these grants amounted to over £236,000. Under the Local Government Act they ceased, and in lieu thereof it was provided that there should be annually paid out of the consolidated fund to the local taxationaccount a sum equal to the duties collected in Ireland on certain