By Robert Murray
Parliamentary govt in Victoria is now greater than a century and a part outdated. it's a tale of low and high lighting, idealistic commitment and self-serving manipulation, with many vibrant figures - yet over the a long time the improvement of an outstanding culture of democratic carrier to a difficult public with excessive expectancies. This ebook concisely describes the beginning within the 1850s of democratic, self sufficient executive and its development over fifteen many years. This ebook is a paperback booklet of 244 pages and contains many black and white political cartoons.
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Extra info for 150 Years of Spring Street: Victorian Government 1850s to 21st Century
Berry made it his mission to tame the Legislative Council and at the height of the battle in 1878, especially on ‘Black Wednesday’, 9 January, it seemed almost like Eureka again. Eminent heads rolled in a tense and storm-tossed civil service, people crowded into the city streets in angry groups, the pages of the The Age and The Argus were almost on fire with fury against one side or the other. The Eureka leader, Peter Lalor, now a senior Berry minister, was rumoured to be ready to use his powers to close the postal, rail, banking and port services to force a revolutionary settlement on the Council.
Using the mandate of his large majority in the Assembly, Berry drove through the colony’s first land tax, aimed at both raising revenue from larger estates and splitting them up. Graziers and the Council hated it, but they feared an income tax more. Popular feeling and the Assembly mandate were too strong for the Council to dare reject the tax. However, defeat on such a key issue made the Councillors determined to thwart further attacks. Refusing payment to members was the barbed weapon with which to pay back the Assembly.
In April, a compromise resolved the stand-off and most of the officials were reinstated, though not some who had made themselves objectionable to Berry. Under the compromise, the Council agreed to paying Assembly members for a further parliamentary term. After further extensions, the parliament finally made payment of Assembly members permanent in 1886. Berry’s Assembly returned to the attack with an amendment to the Constitution which would turn the Council into the ‘house of delay’ the democrats had long threatened.