'/ Grants $565,758 \ (Yukon $160,000J
1900 600,000 424,879 701901. 600,000 407,879 081902. 600,000 457,979 751903 1,130,000 957,979 85
In the year 1899, the North-west government collected $160,000 on account of liquor licenses in the Yukon, and it was allowed to retain that money, which I believe it was entitled to. They spread the amount thus collected over two years, and the real sums available by the North-west government in 1898 and 1899 amounted to $725,758, being 74 per cent upon the amount which they asked in these two years, which was an aggregate of $973,000.
1 have made a comparison also for periods of five years. We will call the first period five Conservative years, because the Conservative government was in power during those years, from 1892 to 1896, inclusive. The total estimates submitted here by the North-west government during those five years aggregated $1,904,526, and they were granted $1,130,847, being 59 per cent of their estimates. The Liberal government have been in power for seven years. In those seven years the estimates of the
North-west government have amounted to $4,303,000, and they have been granted directly in cash $3,097,353, to which must be added the $160,000 of Yukon liquor licenses, making a total of $3,257,353, being 75 per cent, as against 59 per cent during the last five years the Conservative government were in power. Take the first five years that the Liberal government were in power, from 1897 to 1901, inclusive, the total requisitions amounted to $2,573,000, and the total grants amounted to $1,841,495, being 71 per cent. Or, take the last five years of the present government, from 1899 to 1903, inclusive, the estimates presented amounted to $3,465,000, and upon these estimates they have been given $2,691,595, being 77 per cent of the amounts asked for in those five years, as against 59 per cent in the last five years of the pi*evious government.
In view of these figures, I think we are fairly well justified in stating that on the whole we have very much less to complain of this year than there was to be complained of in any former year. While I say that, I would not care to take the position that the grants are being made too large, because it is my belief that twice the amount of money that is being voted could be profitably and advantageously expended in the North-west Territories, and to Canada's general advantage. I say that there is no part of any country in the world which offers to-day such a good field for investments, with such an assurance of speedy and large returns. Still, I am bound to say that I think the government are this year fairly well meeting the financial demand. The comparisons which I have made with former years can lead to no other conclusion.
Sly own attitude in former years on the question of provincial autonomy lias been referred to, and I am free to state that if no new condition had arisen, if the conditions were exactly the same at the present time that they have been in former years, I would be expressing the same view that I expressed two years ago on the question. But a new condition has arisen-the condition of the Canadian Pacific Railway tax exemption, to which I intend to refer a little later-which, in my opinion, furnishes a very strong reason why it is better to hesitate, why it is better not to have action taken at the present time. But, on the general question, apart from that condition, which I hope will be removed in a very short time, I would simply take the occasion to repeat the opinion which I have expressed in other years, that the people in the territories have the same right to full powers of local government as the people of any province. *
Besides the question to which I have referred, that of the Canadian Pacific Railway land tax, there are one or two other factors which might suggest the advisability of a little delay. One of these is found in