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-----..-IS IT PEACE ?



LORD HOPETOUN. Much regret will be felt in Cheshire, where he is so well-known, at the unexpected resig- nation by Lord Hopetoun of his high position as Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia. The unpleasant incident lias arisen over a question of salary, Lord Hope- toun finding that the allowance made to him causes a severe drain upon his personal purse. Nowhere will his retirement be more regretted than in Australia itself, where his lordship is immensely popular, and it will be a bad thing and a bad advertisement for the new Commonwealth if it allows a paltry con- sideration of salary to deprive it of the eminent services of its present Governor- General. The crisis has been precipitated by the rejection by the Federal House of Representatives of a Bill proposing to supple- ment the Governor-General's salary by 18,000 a year. This may appear to the man- in-the-street, unaccustomed to deal with the details of princely entertainments, as an altogether extravagant sum, but an examina- tion of the items will bring cause for reflection. The suggested £ 8,000 increase was meant to embrace E600 for a private secretary, £ 500 for a military secretary, £ 300 for an aide-de-camp, t 1, 600 for lighting, £ 400 for coal, and £ 600 for miscellaneous purposes. By rejecting this Bill, the House insisted upon his lordship's paying all these items out of his own pocket, which reduced his salary to CG,Ooo. Lord Hopetoun perceived that it would be impossible for him to continue in office on these terms, unless he lived as a recluse and gave up travelling through the Commonwealth and entertaining in a manner 0 befitting the dignity of his office. In official and Press circles through the Australian Commonwealth his lordship's decision is deeply deplored, and it is hoped that some way out of the difficulty may yet be found. The statement that since his appointment Lord Hopetoun has spent no less a sum than £ 25,000 out of his private purse shews that the grievance is a genuine one.


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