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Several of these items, if valued at all, must be taken at low estimates; but, considering that capitals at home or in Foreigo countries, and British capital in Foreign funds, are not included: it will be keeping sufficiently within bounds, to estimate the aggregate of this kind of property at five hundred millions, which sum is accordingly taken for assessment.
These several amounts will form a total of property for the United Kingdom, exclusive of funded property, of two thousand four hundred millions, and the tive per cent. assessment upon this property, will amount to the sum of one hundred and twenty millions, or at an interest of five per cent., a redeemable incometax of six millions
per annum. The following list, taken from Colquhoun, of incomes arising from profession, government offices, the arts, and fixed salaries, though defective in many particulars, will forn sufficient data, to prevent an exaggerated statement :
Ranks and descriptions. Families. Incomes.
£ Royal .... 12
500,000 State and revenue
3500 980 ............ 3,430,000 higher officers, Do, inferior officers 18000 300
•5,400,000 Army, (officers) 21000 at 200 each, say half 2,100,000 Navy, (officers) 8380 at 250 each, say half 1,045,000 Half-pay (officers)
100 each, say half 325,000 military and naval Clergymen, [eminent] 1300 720 each, say half 1,080,000 ->[ninor) 17500 200
3,500,000 Law, including all 19000 400
7,600,000 classes Physic, ditto 18000 300 ...
5,400,000 ditto 5000 280
1,400,000 8700 300
Engineers, surveyors,} 8700
Universities & chief
Amount carried over,
Amount brought forward
£50,414,000 Persons employed in the education of 35000 204 ..
9,500,000 youth Dissenting clergymen, 5000 100
500,000 Persons employed at theatres, concerts, 875 200 ..
It will be seen, that in this statement every article relating to the army and
navy is carried out at one half the amount only, and the same has been done in that relating to the education of youth, Some other articles call also for reduction ; particularly those relating to state and revenue; on the other hand, population having increased one-sixth, since the above estimate was formed, that circumstance might add five or six millions to the amount, and make up for exaggeration. A further diminution, however, seems necessary in calculations of this nature, and the whole amount for assessment is taken at forty millions only.
In the absence of precise data, on which to form an estimate of the net profits of trade and agriculture, Colquhoun's valuation of the incomes of persons engaged in those pursuits, has been taken at one half only, the other half of their incomes being supposed to arise from property. The following then is adopted as a probable basis :Heads of Averaged
£. families. profits. Farmers, • 280,000,
16,800,000 Eminent Merchants and Bankers
3,500,... 1,300..........4,550,000 Lesser Merchants,
trading by Sea, & 22,800,.... 400..........9,120,000
Brokers Ship builders ....500,... 400
200,000 Ship owners for freight 8,750,..
.... 300.......... 2,625,000 Manufacturers in all
200.........8,800,000 branches Principal warehouse
men, trading by 900,.... 400........... 360,000
wbolesale Shop-keepers and re
140,000,... 100....... 14,000,000 tail Tradesmen
Amount carried over £56,455,000 Amount brought forward
£56,455,000 Tailors, Mantua-ma
kers, and Milli- * 43,750.... 90......... 3,800,000
The increased population since the time this estimate was formed, would add one-sixth, or ten millions, to the amount; but this, like the former calculation, being liable to much error, is taken for the purposes of assessment, at forty millions only.
These two estimates; of income not arising from property, and net profits; it will be recollected, are assessed at five per cent. for ten years, and produce an annual sum of four millions for that period. A short summary of the several assessments and the amount of income, will show how nearly they approximate to the exposition of Mr. Vansittart, already quoted :£
1,300 millions, income 65 millions Houses & buildings 400
20 Tithes of the laity, mines and mine
........ 10 rals, canals, tolls
and timber Capital and stock 500
25 Funded property 560
By the above summary of property and income, it will be seen, that our estimate of taxed income, exceeds the amount stated by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, by the sum of twenty-eight millions only, and this excess may be easily accounted for by Mr. Vansittart's assertion, that more than two hundred millions were returned, and that a considerable sum was not given in at all. It must also be recollected, that the property of merchants trading to foreign countries, was, during many years of the war, very doubtful and precarious, and large sums were actually lost by confiscation of British property, under which circumstances no income
could be returned. Considerable reliance then may be placed on the correctness of the calculations adopted as the basis of assess mnent; and a general'assurance may be felt, that the amount is rather under than over-rated. : At all events, there can exist no error of sufficient magnitude to endanger the efficiency of the plan proposed, since an over statement of four hundred millions in the estimate of property, will only affect the general result, to the amount of one million per annum. 11."
Let us now take a dispassionate view of the whole compass and beneficial result of the plan proposed :)
The assessment on property is one hundred and twenty millions, or per annum, The assessment on the funds, about one hundred
5,800,000 and sixteen millions, or per annum,
The assessment ou incomes of profession, &c.? and net profits for ten years only, per annum,
Making a tatal annual charge of £15,800,000 But from this annual charge, we may, in strict calculation, strike out the assessment on the fund-holder, the advantages to him in improved security and eventual amount of property, being more than equivalent to the charge upon him.
The four millions also upon incomes of profession, &c. and upon net profits of trade and agriculture, being for ten years only, must be estimated at somewhat less than two millions of permanent charge; the whole then becomes reduced to a permanent annual charge upon the country of eight millions only; in return for which, there will be an immediate remission of seventeen and a half millions, in duties and taxes : a further annual remission of duties and taxes during ten years, of seven hundred and seventy-five thousand pounds; at the conclusion of which period, there will have resulted an aggregate relief to the country, of twenty-five millions in duties and taxes. Further, the public funded debt, which is now nearly eight hundred millions, will in ten years be reduced to two hundred and seventy-five millions, and the annual charge thereon, from being forty-seven millions, will decline to fourteen millions. The whole of the gross taxation upon the country, which in 1820 was (exclusive of parochial taxes) sixty-two millions, will in 1832 be reduced to thirty-five millions, which sum includes a provision of five millions applicable to the further reduction of debt. The result of the whole then, may without exaggeration, be stated as a clear gain to the country, beyond the assessment required, of twenty millions per annum!
. It may be difficult to show the exact sum of relief, which the remission of any given amount of duties and taxes will produce to each individual, the operation of such relief being both direct and indirect. We may, however, calculate the probable expenditure out of any income, in articles liable to customs and excise, and the probable amount of assessed taxes, and thus obtain the direct operation. The immediate remission of duties and taxes, under the proposed measures, we have shown, will be seventeen millions and a balf; allowing a reduction of one-third in customs and excise, and of one-half in assessed taxes; and the effect of this general relief upon an income of five huodred pounds per annum may be considered as follows: