Mr. T. S. SPROULE (East Grey).
Before that motion is adopted, I wish merely to draw attention to the fact that this .petition comes in at an extremely late date, and after the time for the presentation of petitions and introduction of private Bills has been twice extended. When an application of that nature is made, some exceptional reason should be given why the House should depart from its well-understood rule. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Duncan Ross) has given no reason whatever.
Mr. DUNCAN ROS!S. Mr. Speaker, in 1897 an Act was passed by the provincial legislature of the province of British Columbia incorporating the Vancouver, Victoria and Eastern Railway and Navigation Company. In 1898 an Act was passed by this parliament declaring the works of this company to be works for the general advantage of Canada. In 1902 and 1904 extensions of time for the commencement and completion of the work were granted by this parliament. Since then some fifty miles of tbe railway has been constructed and arrangements are now being made to complete tbe road. In tbe course of making tbe necessary financial arrangements, the question was raised whether the charter rights of the company had not expired because of a certain omission in the legislation secured in this parliament. In order to remove this doubt-and tbe question was never raised until two or three days ago-the Vancouver, Victoria and Eastern Railway Company come to this parliament and ask for the legislation necessary to that end. It is purely a technical matter. But the working of the company and the financial arrangements now about to be completed will be affected unless this legislation goes through.