Member of Council, be legally performed by the Governor alone, he being then the only representative of the collective body, and that his act on this point of view, is to be taken as the act of the Governor and Council. . . .
NEW SOUTH WALES: REPORT FROM A SELECT COMMITTEE OF THE HOUSE OF COMMONS 10 July 18121
... He is made Governor and Captain General,with the most enlarged powers, uncontrolled by any Council, with authority to pardon all offences (treason and murder excepted), to impose duties, to grant lands, and to issue colonial regulations. It is in evidence from Governor Bligh that to the breach of some of these regulations, issued at the sole will of the Governor, a punishment of 500 lashes is annexed, and to others a fine of £100. The manner in which these extensive powers have been used has not always been such as to give satisfaction to the colony; nor can it be expected that where so much authority and responsibility are thrown into the hands of one man, that his will however just, and his administration however wise, will not at times create opposition and discontent amongst men unused, in their own country, to see so great a monopoly of power. Under this impression, your Committee think it right to recommend that a Council be given to the Governor, for the purpose of sharing with him in the responsibility of the measures which they may think necessary for the security or prosperity of the colony. It may perhaps be doubted how far it will be wise to limit the authority of the Governor over a colony in which, more than any other, the Government ought to be strong and unfettered; but the views of your Committee would to some degree be obtained, even though the Council appointed had no other power than that of protesting against any measures or the Governor of which they might disapprove; and of transmitting their protests to the Secretary of State. The acquiescence of the Council would give popularity to the measure of which it approved, and its expressed disapprobation might have the effect of checking such as were evidently inexpedient.
The Governor has the power of making grants of land; and your Committee have heard with surprise that this power has, in one instance at least, been used in a manner, to say the least of it, liable to much observation. It has been stated in evidence that a grant of land, to the amount of 1,000 acres, was made by a Governor to the person appointed to succeed him, who, immediately on assuming the____________________