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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 48

Evidence of Assessments. Section 74

Evidence of Assessments. Section 74.

Clause 74.—"Assessment rolls, and all entries made therein in the manner by this Act directed, by the production thereof alone and without any further evidence, shall be received as prima facie evidence of the facts therein mentioned.

The validity of any assessment shall not be affected by reason that any of the provisions of this Act have not been complied with."

This is a section that will probably be amended before any proceedings for the recovery of the tax are taken, and it may be expected that the production of an extract from an assesment roll, certified as correct, will be accepted as evidence. If an assessment roll had to be produced to prove one case it would be impossible to keep its contents secret in Court, and thus the amounts at which persons, other than the defendant, had been assessed would become known to some who had no right to get such an insight into the state of affairs of other people.

The second part of the clause will prevent the successful setting up of anything like a quibbling defence on the ground that some matter of petty detail had not been strictly carried out. Generally, it may be taken to mean that on the production of an assessment roll, properly certified, it shall not be competent for anyone to raise questions as to procedure antecedent to the signing of the roll by the chairman of the Board of Reviewers.