Annual Report 1889
Ladies and Gentlemen,- Having had the honor of your suffrages in filling the office of Mayor for the past year, I have much pleasure in laying before you the following reports of the present condition, the future requirements, the several steps that have been taken by your council for the purpose of improving the well being, and financial position of the Town together with the various services connected therewith, which on the whole I trust will be satisfactory and meet with your approval. For the facility of reference I will treat of the different subjects under their several heads.
On Water and Sewerage
Soon after entering on the duties of my office, your Council in compliance with the instructions given them, at a public meeting of Ratepayers held on the 1st day of Feb’y last, to consider the report and estimates of E. H. Keating, C. E., then submitted in accordance with your instructions given at public meeting held on the 13th day of the previous November, prepared and submitted to the Legislature of the province an Act for the purpose of obtaining powers to carry into effect the scheme for the construction of an efficient system of Sewerage and an ample supply of Water for Domestic, Fire – and other purposes. After much discussion in both houses on all the bearings of the scheme the Legislative Council thought proper to attach a rider to the Act in the shape of a clause requiring the rate-payers to reaffirm the undertaking previous to the Act becoming law, and as you are all aware at the public meeting held for that purpose on the 26th of April last the final decision was postponed for a period of 12 months and all the labors of the Engineer and your Committee rendered of no avail; this is much to be regretted as the Town during the past summer suffered materially from the deficiency, and quality of the water supply and the inauguration of an efficient system of sewerage has been for many years an imperative necessity; the delay of which has only been tolerated by the interposition of Providence in warding off all the great epidemics that from time to time prevail in several portions of the world, but how long His mercy and forbearance may endure should we not take immediate and active steps to place the Town in a more satisfactory hygienic state than at present it would be presumptive to rely on. I therefore trust that a scheme of sewerage may be forthwith promulgated that will commend itself to the judgement and circumstances of the rate-payers and inhabitants in general.
On Income Tax
My esteemed predecessor in office referred in his annual report to the subject of this tax which had been imposed by the Legislature upon the Town of Dartmouth in common with all the incorporated Towns of the Province and promised on behalf of the Council that every possible effort should be put forth to have the law amended in such a way that this Town should be placed on the same footing as the City of Halifax in which this feature of the assessment law did not exist. The redemption of this pledge descended to an obligation upon the present council and I am pleased to be able to say that the Government and Legislature were so fully convinced of the justice of the claim put forth by the Town: that an Act to exempt the Town from the income clauses of the Assessment law – introduced and advocated by the leader of the Government, passed with very little opposition and no amendment.
On Dartmouth Common
This was another legacy that devolved on your Council from their predecessors. And in compliance with the directions of the rate-payers as expressed at a public meeting held the 13th day of November, 1888, your Council applied to the Legislature for an Act to incorporate a commission, and powers to make the necessary expenditure required for the purpose in which they were successful, the Legislature in due time passing an Act incorporating the Dartmouth Park Commission to consist of the Mayor for the time being, and two Councillors to be elected annually with two commissioners elected by the subscribers to the auxiliary fund.
On Consolidation of Funded Debt
Your Council considering the large rate of interest namely 6%, that the Town was paying on their bonded debt, compared with the low rate ruling in the money market generally, promulgated and secured the passage of an Act through the Legislature in 1889, to authorize their borrowing, by the issue of new bonds to consolidate the funded debt, a sufficient sum of money to pay off their old. outstanding bonds. Under this Act your Council paid off on 2nd December last bonds amounting to $15,700 by the issue of new ones, for the sum of $17,000 at 4% interest redeemable in 25 years from date.
On Qualification of Voters
While on the subject of Legislation I would direct the attention of the rate-payers to the change that has been again made in the requisite qualification of a Municipal Elector by the Act passed by the Legislature at its last session in 1889, to amend the Towns Incorporation Act. of 1888. The clause as passed and now in force runs thus :—
“ 19.—The qualification of an elector at any election of mayor or councillor shall be as follows: A British subject of the full age of twenty-one years, who is by the last completed assessment roll assessed in respect. of real estate one hundred and fifty dollars, or in respect of personal estate three hundred dollars, or of personal and real estate together three hundred dollars, including widows and unmarried who are British subjects of the age of twenty-one years, and who are in their own right assessed in the last assessment in like amounts as above stated; and also including married women holding property under the provisions of “The married womens’ property Act, 1884,” of the said age, being British subjects and assessed for said property in the last assessment to the amounts aforesaid; provided that no unmarried woman shall he entitled to vote whose husband is qualified to vote, whether by reason of being rated for property held by his wife or otherwise; and also provided that no person shall be qualified to vote at any election for mayor or councillor whose rates and taxes on real and personal property for the last preceding year due the town. have not been fully paid at least ten days before the last day for making nominations to said offices under this Act.”
I need not assure you that this change has not been sought by your Council, but has been passed by the Legislature on behalf of all the incorporated Towns of the Province; and without any desire to criticize or commend the provisions themselves your Council cannot but regret the many changes that have been made within the past few years in the requisite qualification of a voter as leading to confusion and in many cases much dissatisfaction.
Bye-Laws and Ordinances
I have great cause to congratulate the Town on the successful completion of the Council’s labours in revising and compiling a very comprehensive set of Bye-Laws for the government of the Town. This most arduous task has engaged the time and energies for various councils for some years and has been rendered more difficult from the various changes that have from time to time taken place in the laws governing the Town, notably so from the many radical changes that took place on the passing of the Towns Incorporation, and Assessment Acts of 1888, and the several amendments thereto. They were completed and finally passed by the Council on the 10th September 1889, and owing to the attentive and learned care bestowed upon them by His Honor the Recorder, received with only one or two unimportant changes the approval of the Governor in Council on the 30tl1 day of same month, and were thereupon published in pamphlet form for the information of the rate payers and residents.
As you are aware from the report of my predecessor the management of these public institutions have by the Towns Incorporation Act of 1883, been during the past year taken out of the hands of-your Council and placed under the entire control of a Board of Commissioners, two of whom being appointed by the Government in January last, and the remaining three elected by your Council. This method has been adopted for the purpose of giving more permanence in the management of our educational system, but as it takes all control of expenditure out of the hands of your direct representatives, the Council, I consider it a retrograde measure, and how far the conservatism obtained may compensate for the control relinquished will largely depend on the extent the permanent Commissioners are in unison with the Wishes and desires of the citizens as a community. The sum asked for and appropriated by the Council for this service was $5550—as against the sum of $5729 expended last year, this shows an apparent reduction of $179 in favor of this year, but against this is to be added the sum paid for interest charged to general account of $457 and the amount of $1531 received from Government as grant in aid of Teachers’ Salaries which is this year paid direct to School Board. With these corrections the appropriation for School purposes was in reality $261.90 in excess of 1888. The Report of Chairman of School Board is hereto appended page——
The Commission for the improvement and embellishment of this fine tract of land was inaugurated as soon as possible after the passing of the Act of the Legislature granting the powers of incorporation, and they immediately took steps to proceed with the duties imposed upon them, and have actively entered on several measures for the general improvement of the property placed under their control, such as the opening of a new carriage drive around the southern boundary of the high table land; the repairing and improvement of the several foot path ; opening and forming of chains; the cleaning out and shaping of an ornamental pond at the south-east corner, the completion of which had to he postponed owing to the setting in of the winter season, but will be resumed and carried to completion as soon as climatic influences permit. They have likewise made arrangements with Mr. Harris, of Halifax, for the supply of 500 acclimatized young ornamental trees to be delivered for setting out in the spring, preparations having been made in the fall with the View of facilitating the planting of a great portion thereof. This has been effected at a cost of $11033.38. The receipts have been, from voluntary contributions $1435, from the Municipal funds $500, making a total of $1935, leaving a balance on hand of $831.62, $800 of which is in the Bank on special deposit; the amount still remaining on the subscription list uncollected is $105; and I have every assurance that with the experience gained during the year they will be enabled to make a very satisfactory appearance in the way of permanent improvements during the incoming season, the full extent of which will take years to realize, and having a large tract of land under their charge. The Commissioners would be able to advantageously expend funds to an almost unlimited extent that any public spirited townsmen might be in a position to devote to the ornamentation and beautifying of their native place.
The small repairs required have been carried out at an expenditure of $16.15. This plot of ground has been for some years past very crowded, so that there now remains scarcely any of it unappropriated; and the urgent necessity for providing a suitable place for the reception of the dead farther removed from the centre of population has been repeatedly brought to the notice of your Council, who have advertized for information of a suitable plot, and an imperative necessity will devolve on the incoming Council to take early steps to secure the same.
These have received the unremitted attention of your Council, and have been cleaned and repaired generally; the main outlets to the adjacent country receiving special consideration. A paved gutter has been constructed at the corner of the Eastern Passage and Old Ferry Roads; a sidewalk in front of the row of new houses on John Street: and the various culverts and drains opened, cleansed, -and repaired: bridges examined, and where necessary, fully repaired. But, owing to the comparatively small sum provided for this service, your Council have been unable to entertain any extensive improvements; and in view of the probability of the breaking up of the streets in the near future for the construction of sewers they have considered it advisable to expend as small a sum as possible upon them. The estimated expenditure on this service was $2000, out of which your Council paid the sum of $292 over expended last year and $1663.48, for the work performed this season; being within $44.52 of the appropriation. The necessity of the Town owning and working an efficient Steam Stone Crusher so clearly referred to in my predecessor’s report still appertains and will have to be provided in the near future. In consequence of the many additional calls for outlay in the Town this season your Council considered it imperative to omit from the appropriation the provision for watering the streets, but owing to the very dry summer and the representations of many rate-payers that were suffering from the dust an extra appropriation was voted and the sum of $82.25 expended thereon during the most troublesome portion of the season.
The Lamont Mill and property still continues under conditional lease to Jno. Lapiere at a nominal rent of $25 per year the only outlay incurred being for insurance. The Engine House has had necessary repairs to tower and chimney and the front painted, etc., being at present time in good condition. The expenditure on this building has amounted to $177.24, $143.98 being balance left unpaid from last years alterations. The Lock-up has been examined, and all necessary repairs et.c made at a cost of $17.50. The Town Clerk’s Office having been found inconvenient has been altered, refitted, and painted at a total cost of $53.60. This was much needed, and has added greatly to the general convenience of the office.
There are now 53 lamps distributed throughout the Town, no addition to the number has been made this season, there has been 9 posts and 2 lanterns replaced by new ones, and more or less repairs carried out where requisite, at a total cost for repairs and lighting of $647.32. There has been much deserved dissatisfaction at the inefficiency of this service, but it is as good as the system permits, there has been a proposition to introduce the Electric Arc Light into the Town, but the expense for 20 Arc Lights of 1200 candle power, would amount to $1200. The number of lights propose did not commend itself as sufficient to meet the requirements of the Town, and that for an efficient service the sum required appeared to your council, to be too great an increase to incur on a single service at the present time, this combined with the many and great changes that are continually taking place in the various systems in operation, the large number of casualties that have occurred in operating the system at present adopted, the very unsatisfactory results of its introduction into the City of Halifax, and the large extend of the Streets to be lighted, induced your Council to defer the consideration of its introduction for the time being, trusting that there would shortly be perfected, a system whereby the light could be produced and employed in a more diffused manner, at a cheaper rate, and less risk to life and property than at present. I would advise the incoming Council to give this subject their serious consideration, and make such provision as may be comparable with the circumstances of the Town, and in accord with the advancements and requirements of the times.
Pumps and Wells
We have 19 Public Wells, and 15 Pumps in the Town. There have been two new pumps set up during the year, several of the wells are not as efficient as could he desired, and there is much difficulty in keeping the pumps in working condition, and although should a supply of water he introduced into the Town, several of the wells would become useless, there are large portions of the outlying districts that will have to rely on wells for their supply for many years, and it will be a question that must be solved as to what extent that necessity shall he met by public supply, or left to the enterprise and cost of the individual property owners. The appropriation for this service was $100, but the exigencies of the service has necessitated an expenditure of $133.71 the excess being unavoidable.
This department is still maintained in its usual State of efficiency both as regards the number, physique and promptitude of the men, and perfect working condition and completeness of the apparatus. A slight delay occurred at the Leadly fire in May last in getting the steam engine to work, one of the engineers being out of town, and the other employed at the Ropeworks, who on being telephoned to immediately responded. A change has been made which it is expected will prevent the possibility of the recurrence of any such delay in future. A defect developed itself in the suction hose of the steam fire engine at the semi-annual inspection in May last, and although repaired, your Council could not assume the responsibility of its possible failure on an emergency, and therefore procured a new length from the manufactory as soon as possible. We have therefore now on hand a duplicate suction in case of any accident. The appropriated sum for this department was 8468, the amount expended being $455.02, and the extraordinary cost of new section hose of $116.86, in all $571.88, There has been during the year 3 fires, 1 of them a chimney only, and 2 false alarms.
The apparatus of this department at present under the charge of the Engine Company consists of-
1 steam engine, 1 small hand ditto, 1,500 feet of rubber hose, 700 feet of leather ditto, 1 extra length of suction hose, 4 hose reels, 1 water cart, Lanterns, torches, buckets, etc.
The apparatus in charge of the Axe and Ladder Company consists of the following:-
1 waggon, 8 ladders, 2 rubber buckets, 10 axes, 2 grapplings, 2 ropes, 2 chains, 2 lanterns, 3 torches.
The Union Protection Co. have in use for their service-
1 waggon, 3 rubber covers, 4 baskets, 2 axes, 3 ropes.
The large hand engine not being in efficient working order line been taken out of the department and is held for sale; 1,000 feet of the rubber hose having been in use from ten to eleven years, I would recommend the incoming Council to make provision for the purchase of 300 feet more rubber hose to enable the department to meet any possible emergency that might arise.
These have been paid on the usual basis of one nineteenth‘ of the gross amount expended for general purposes omitting all such expenses as may be solely for the benefit of the outside county. The sum appropriated for this was $750, and the amount paid the current year $746.
The only license applied for this year is like the previous- year from the Messrs. Oland, Sons & Co. for an wholesale Brewers License for which they have deposited the fee of ten dollars required by Statute. Under the present Statutes there have been no applications for Retail or Shop Licenses for the sale of Spirituous Liquors in this Town during the past three years, and however inconvenient this may be to some individuals the law appears on the whole to he beneficial to the community; if we can form any opinion from the number of cases of drunkenness and disorderly conduct that have been brought before the Police Court. which have of late been few as compared with the periods when licenses were in vogue.
There have been 14: Truck Licenses, 9 Hack, 2 Auctioneers, and 4 Traders, Licenses granted during the past year, also Exhibitions licensed for which the sum of $141.50 has been received.
The usual force has been employed throughout the year with the additional assistance of a special during a short period of the summer months. This service has been on the whole as efficiently performed as capable by a. small force patrolling over as extensive beats as are contained in this Town. The amount appropriated to this service was $1224, and the sum expended $1237.58 the excess being very small under the circumstances.
There are now 6 persons at the charge of the Town namely 3 Males and 3 Females, taken care of in the County Poor Farm at a charge to the Town of 8373.86, and from the various visits of your council to that institution they are satisfied that every attention and necessary care are taken of the inmates, they received no complaints from any of the wards of the Town; your council express satisfaction at the clean and comfortable manner in which the establishment is kept. by the Master and Matron in charge. The sum of $600 was appropriated for this charge. and the amount paid out for the year including $120 for 2 years grant to the Dispensary was $543.67, there is likewise a further credit of $53.38 received in compensation from an order of filiation.
The are 8 patients at the Hospital for Hospital chargeable on the Town, and 1 patient from the Town whose expenses are recouped to the Town. There has been no change in the patients during the year. The sum Voted for this charge was $1200, and the sum paid $597.84, on account of which the sum of $147.67 has been received, leaving a net expenditure of $423.17. This is to the 30th June only; the account from this institution to the 31st. of December not having been yet paid.
Owing to the action of the ratepayers at the public meeting held on the 26th day of April in postponing any further proceedings with the service for 12 months, the Legislature having been prorogued, your Council was left in a very precarious position, having no legal powers to deal with the then circumstances in which they were placed. By the assumed authority given by the ratepayers at the public meeting held on February 1st, authorizing your late council to apply to the legislature for powers to carry out the works in accordance with the plans at that time submitted and approved. They had engaged and instructed E. H. Keating, C. E., to proceed with plans and specifications of materials required, and had in order to expedite the work printed the specifications and forms of tenders, advertised, and called for the same. The expenditure thus ineur1‘e:l was in anticipation of carrying the works to completion, and would have formed a charge on the capital expenditure for construction. Your present Council found that the Engineer had been engaged with the same view, and that there had been no proviso to meet the ease as it stood. Mr. K. rendered an account against the Town for professional services amounting to $300. This your Council considered a very high charge for the work performed in so far as it could be seen by them. After some explanations, Mr. K. offered to withdraw his account, and submit the whole question of his compensation to the decision of any duly qualified hydraulic engineer that might on certain conditions be selected by the council, and pay out of his own resources the entire expenses of said reference. provided the Town agreed to pay him the full amount of said award. Your Council considering that Engineers’ services were usually rated in accordance with the magnitude of the completed works on which they have been engaged, concluded that the cheapest way was to accept the account as rendered, and although this decision was only carried by a small majority, I am assured the course adopted will commend itself to your approbation. Your Council decided to raise the required funds by a temporary loan, and have closed arrangements with the Bank for that purpose, which will be completed in a few days. The other charges connected with this department, to the extent of $55.42, have been paid out of the general funds, thus making the whole outlay to date, including interest, $667.57.
In this connection I have to report that the Halifax Land Improvement Co. made a proposition to supply the Town with water, the works to be owned and run either by the Town as a. corporation or by the Company as a commercial venture. The water to be taken from either the first or second Dartmouth Lake, and from thence pumped up to a. reservoir to be constructed on the high land adjacent. Neither of these schemes commended itself to the favourable consideration of your Council, as the expense of the plant and buildings for the pumping machinery and the construction of a. suitable reservoir would go very far to offset the cost of bringing the water into the Town by gravitation, and the annual expense of the works would far exceed the interest on the balance of the pipe line, and while the force could he no more if the highest land in the vicinity was chosen, the risks of failure from the construction of the reservoir and breaking down of the pumping machinery would be immeasurably greater, and the purity of the water could not be exceeded if equaled. Your Council have still this subject under their consideration, and I trust they mat be enabled to perfect a scheme that will prove satisfactory to themselves when they will take an early opportunity to lay the same before the ratepayers for their approval.
Although the question of expending a large sum for the purpose of competing this service was by vote of April 26th, postponed for twelve months. I considered it my duty in the interest of rate-payers, to procure any information on the subject that might be from time to time obtainable, and in furtherance thereof the Chairman of Water Supply Committee assisted me in visiting and examining during the past summer the lakes, and found the outflow very small, and from an examination of the surrounding land had every reason to doubt the correctness of the surveys on which the watershed of the district had been delineated, and as this forms the basis on which all the valued reports of the celebrated Engineers have been based, it unfortunately renders them of small value and although Mr. Keating has in reply to my question, stated that “he is quite prepared to stake his professional reputation on the success of the scheme if faithfully carried out according to his plans”, he indignantly repudiates the idea of assuming any responsibility in connection with the surveys of others; thus throwing the whole responsibility of the sufficiency of the source of supply entirely on the Town, great caution will therefore be necessary before expending a large amount of money on this scheme.
Litigation – Mr. Craig’s Case
The Town has for several years past enjoyed a happy immunity from the vexatious and costly litigation that has been experienced in some other incorporated towns, but it is only proper that I should refer in this connection to a break in the monotony of our affairs caused by a. suit brought to recover a sum of money paid in some years since by Mr. Craig as a fee for a liquor license. Under the facts of the case as represented to his Honor the Recorder, the case appeared to be exactly similar to the cases that had occurred in the City of Halifax, in which a large number of dealers had paid in sums of money under the Dominion License Act of 1883 for the purpose of procuring licenses. Before the expiration of the license year the Act under which the money was paid was declared by the Privy Council to be unconstitutional, and as no licenses could be granted under the Act, claims were made lay the parties who had paid in their fees for a refund of the special amounts so paid. The Recorder of the Town and the then recorder of the City, Mr. Robert Sedgewick, now Deputy Minister of Justice, consulted together in reference to the cases, and concluded that there was no authority under which the money could be paid out. The proceedings of the Council at this period were being narrowly watched and as injunction proceedings had already been taken to restrain the licensing authorities from granting any license for the sale of spirituous liquors, it was felt that caution was imperative in dealing with a question so delicate and difficult. The Council felt safe in acting on the opinion of the two learned gentlemen referred to, and would probably have been sustained in their action had the facts proven at the trial been in accordance with the instructions on which the Recorder’s opinion was founded.
The case made out by the plaintiff differed materially from that advised on, inasmuch as it was made to appear that the money was paid to the Town not for a Dominion License under an Act afterwards ruled to he unconstitutional but for a, Town License which the Council would have had power to grant. had the requisite petition been filed ; no petition had as a matter of fact been filed and the plaintiff was not therefore entitled to the Town License as professed to have been prayed for. He had enjoyed immunity in the sale of spirituous liquors for eight or nine months on the strength of his payment of fifty dollars. The fee for a whole year would have been under the resolution of Council one hundred dollars. When his premises were eventually closed up by the then Warden, it was on the ground that there was no law Dominion or Local, under which the plaintiff could claim protection. It is difficult to see what claim there could he either legal or or equitable to a refund of the amount paid in, but the judgement of the County Court was given in his favor, and although the reasons presented by the learned Judge do not seem to he very convincing yet your Council having great objection to protracted litigation, have accepted the decision, and the sum claimed together with the costs of the suit amounting to $83.93 has been paid. The result no doubt is to be regretted but the rate-payers have the consolation of knowing that by the course taken they have escaped injunctions which if successfully carried on might have resulted in expenses amounting to several hundreds of dollars. It will he remembered that an attempt on the part of the Council some years since to refund a fine imposed in the Police Court for violation of the License Acts resulted in costs amounting to $209.94, and there is every reason to suppose that a similar result would have followed had the Council taken a similar course in the present case. In adopting the course that they did, the Council felt and are assured that they have chosen the least of two evils. The other parties that at the same time paid in fees have presented similar claims to that of Mr. Craig, and as the question raised is solely one of law it has been left entirely in the hands of His Honor the Recorder to take such steps as he may deem advisable.
The engagement entered into by the Town with the Government on behalf of the Intercolonial Railway whereby a branch of said Railway was carried through the Town by virtue of which the Intercolonial Railway authorities have from time to time made application to the Town for the payment of the annual sum of $4,000 has received the careful and attentive consideration of your Council who have hitherto been unable to satisfy themselves that the spirit and intentions of said contract has been carried out. In view of which your Council have made such representations to the Government as they trust will result in an impartial and favourable consideration of the case prepared on behalf of the Town.
Notwithstanding the persistent steps taken by your several Councils for some years past supplemented by the untiring efforts of the present members in urging on the Government the inefficiency and unsuitableness of the premises used as a Post Office and Savings Bank for this Town, no success has as yet followed their labours. I trust that the Government will in the near future be so convinced, by the inconvenience within and the external exigency of the case, of the necessity for a change that they will take immediate steps to remedy so prominent an eyesore and source of annoyance.
Fire Proof Vault
Reference was made in his report by my predecessor of the necessity that existed of providing a fire-proof vault for the office of the Town Clerk as the safe at present in use although considered good and reliable is quite inadequate for the safe keeping of the large and continually increasing accumulation of valuable books and papers, and although your present Council could not owing to the other pressing claims make any appropriation for this much required service, I would strongly recommend to the incoming Council the urgency of taking the necessary steps to supply the want.
This very complicated question has not been lost sight of by our Council, and the hindrance it has hitherto presented to the progress and advancement of the Town, taken full cognizance of Your Council considering the Ferry to be in fact a floating bridge or highway, connecting the whole eastern section of the province with the Capital, hoped that the Government would have seen their way clear to have taken over the ferry, and operated the same in the interests of the public at large, especially after their having taken over the charge of the Bridge over the Avon at Windsor, and thrown the same open free from all tolls, and with this view your Council sought the co-operation and assistance of the Council of the City of Halifax. There overtures not meeting with the success that was anticipated your Council have considered it advisable to obtain an expression of the views and wishes of the ratepayers and citizens in general, before taking any further steps on this important question, and with that object have decided to call a public meeting to discuss the subject on Tuesday, the 21st instant.
The Sanitary State of the Town
The Act relating to the Public Health passed by the Legislature, 16th April, 1888, has not been found workable, owing to the failure of the Governor in Council to make the necessary sanitary orders for carrying out thereof according to its requirements, although repeatedly requested by your Council to do so –in consequence the Sanitary inspectors and the Board of Health have met with many obstacles in attempting to perform the duty imposed on them.
You will find by the Auditor’s report and statement hereto appended that the receipts of the Town from all sources, exclusive of the sum of $17,000 borrowed to pay off outstanding bonds, was $16,733.55; this, with the $95.47 balance on hand brought forward from 1888, makes the receipts with the above exception $16,829.02, being $1,495.63 less than in the year 1888. The expenditure for all purposes for the year, exclusive of the sums of $15,700 paid for the redemption of bonds, $1,000 on special deposit in Bank to meet bonds for that amount not yet presented for redemption, and $331.50 discount on bonds of Consolidated Debt, was $16,640.80, being $1,578.38 less than in the year 1888. But it must he considered that the income and expenditure for the year 1888 were both increased by the sum of $1,493.58, being the amount received from the Government, &c., as grant in aid of teachers salaries, whereas this year the sum from this grant is paid direct to the Board of School Commissioners. The balance of cash in hand at close of year, less the special deposit above-mentioned, was $156.72.
The bonded liabilities of the Town at the end of the year amounted to $20,000, viz :—Consolidated Debt, $17,000 ; Hawthorn School Bonds, $2,000; Common School Bonds, $1,000 provision for the payment of these last having been made. The current liabilities amount to $1,874.31; this sum is in excess of last year $760.51, but has been largely augmented by the amount due Mr. Keating, C. E., on account of water supply and sewerage of $600. The assessed valuation of real and personal property within the Town amounted to $1,261.025, being an increase of nearly 3% per cent on the valuation of 1888 principally on personal property, the valuation for the three previous years having been nearly stationary. The rate being $1.08 per 100 dollars of valuation, the incidental revenue received otherwise than from assessment amounted to $2989.27. The amount of statutory exemptions to firemen, widows and others was $720.18. On the 31st December there was uncollected of the assessment of the year $96.417, being in excess of the previous year $438.00 which was owing to the stringent state of the business portion of the community, I have a full assurance that in due time the greater portion of this sum will be realized. Other current assets amount to $344, principally for poll taxes and common rents, the greater part of which Will be collected. And although the expenditure on several of the services have exceeded the estimates owing to the various causes as more particularly set forth under their several heads the interest account being increased to the sum of $1423.29 owing to the interest on bonds being paid up to the date of their redemption on the 2nd of December, and the interest of all the bonds being charged to this general account, whereas in previous years the interest on money borrowed for schools was charged to expenses of the schools. This account in the future will be reduced by the conversion of the Town debt in the annual sum of $322. Then we have had to meet the extraordinary expenditure of $500 for the Park. I have pleasure in reporting that the finances of the Town are on the whole in a healthy and satisfactory condition.
A detailed statement of expenditure with Auditors’ Reports and Statements are herewith printed for your information.
In closing my report of the condition of the Town during my term of office, and the immediate requirements that claim your careful attention,I must express my great obligations to the several members of your Council, to his Honor the Recorder, the Town Clerk, and other officials for their hearty co-operation and assiduous assistance not only in the faithful and prompt performance of their several duties the untiring industry and ability, with which they have served the Town, hut also for the personal help they have invariably rendered me in performing those that have from time to time devolved upon myself.
With many thanks for the honor you have bestowed upon me, and sincere wishes for the welfare and prosperity of the Town of Dartmouth, I have the honor to be Ladies and Gentlemen,
Your very obedient servant, FREDERICK SCARFE, Mayor.
Dartmouth, N. S.. January 20th, 1890.
Statement of Receipts and Expenditure of the Town of Dartmouth, for Year ended December 31st, 1889.
Vouchers Paid during the Financial Year Ended Dec. 31st 1889
Gentlemen,- We beg to report having audited the books, vouchers and accounts of the Town Clerk and Treasurer, including the books, accounts and vouchers of the Treasurer of the Board of School Commissioners of Dartmouth, for the year ended December 31st, 1889. All of which we find correct.
Herein is a list of the current liabilities of the Town, and a statement of the consolidated and bonded debts, as shown by the Ledger Accounts and Sundry Accounts placed in our hands for inspection.
By the accompanying statement it will be seen that the receipts for the year amounted to $33,733,55, and the expenditure to $32,672.30, leaving a balance to the credit of the Town of $1,156.72, one thousand dollars of which being a balance on special deposit from sale of consolidated debentures, held to meet bonds of the same amount not yet presented for redemption.
It will be seen by the statement of the Board of School Commissioners that the receipts for the year amount to $7,907.61, and the expenditure to $7,081.51, leaving a credit balance carried down of $16.10.
All of which is respectfully submitted.
Geo. Foot, Walter Creighton} Auditors
Dartmouth, N.S., January 10th, 1890.
Auction, Hackney & Truck Licenses, & Dog Taxes Paid, 1889
To the Ratepayers of Dartmouth
Ladies and gentlemen, -The financial year of the Schools having ended on the 31st of December last, it is my duty to lay before you a statement of the expenditure for the year, and also an account of the general affairs of that portion of the public service which is of the first importance to the welfare of our Town. Previous to January 1st, 1889, the schools were under the charge of your Council, but by the Act of 1888 a School Board was constituted, consisting of three members of the Council and two members appointed by the Governor in Council, this Board having sole and absolute control of the schools. The present Government appointees hold office for two and three years respectively, but in future appointments their tenure of office shall always be for three years. This coupled with tl1e fact that at least one of the members appointed by the Council shall always remain on the Board while he is a member of the Council, ensures a much more permanent organization than formerly, and while still leaving the control in the Council, preserves a continuity in the management which must have a beneficial effect on the schools. One of the first matters to engage the attention of the Board was the regulation of the teachers salaries. Heretofore, these seem to have been increased in a haphazard manner, with but slight regard to the qualification or services of the teachers. The Board has adopted a scale of increases based on the work of the teachers, as evidenced by the advancement of the pupils. If the work (as shown by the reports of the School Inspector, the Committee on Teachers, and the Principal) reaches a. certain average the salary is increased according to the scale; if, on the other hand, this average is not attained the salary remains unchanged. This plan will, I believe, he found to work well, as it is not only an incentive to the teachers to do good work, on which alone depends their chances of advancement, but it relieves the Board of having to deal continually with applications for increases, and does away with any chance of favoritism being shown. The total increase under this system for the year amounted to $73.
On the 1st of May a Kindergarten was opened in the Central School House under the charge of Miss Hamilton, a lady who came highly recommended from the Normal school at Truro. An innovation of any sort in any walk of life meets with more or less opposition, and the Kindergarten room has not been an exception, simply, I feel sure, from the fact that this style of elementary education, while quite familiar to residents in Great Britain, the Upper Provinces, and the United States, is here but little understood. I would therefore ask your attention to the following description of the purposes and results of Kindergarten teaching, which explain very concisely the benefits to be derived from this system :-
“What is the purpose of Kindergarten Education?
“It is to develop the child and all its faculties in a natural manner while checking all propensities to evil. The New Education may be regarded as analogous to the treatment of plants by a skillful gardener.
“It is to apply the maternal instinct intelligently, to make the conscientious mother in easy circumstances her child’s best educator during its tenderest years.
“It is to associate children with children, in a pure atmosphere, amid pleasant surroundings, and under a special guidance, during the three or four years intervening between the nursery and the primary school.
“It is to afford children all proper, rational enjoyment; to supply them with toys and games, to sing with them, to play with them -the toys, games, songs, and plays all being covert vehicles of instruction.
“It is to promote children’s healthy activity; later to awaken their imagination gradually to the influence of the beautiful, the true, and the good; to stimulate their imitative and inventive capacity; to aid the development of their reason; and to give those powers free exercise and a right direction.
“It is to prevent any undue strain on children’s powers, mental or physical -to teach by means of object lessons conveyed in plays rather than by books.
“It is to form a well-balanced mind, to discern and bring out gently, but surely, any latent aptitude for intellectual acquirements, artistic gift or manual skill.
“It is to partially relieve parents of slender means of the charge of their very young children for part of the day, and during that time to train them properly.
“It is finally to prepare children for school, to fit them for learning more readily, to sow the first seeds that are to produce adults of sound mind in a sound body -good citizens and true Christians.”
And when it is admitted by the best known authorities on the subject that pupils who have had a course of kindergarten teaching save 2 years in their future schooling, I trust that the action of the board in establishing such an important branch in the educational system of the town will meet with your approval.
I would call your attention to the desirability of the parents of the pupils taking more interest in the schools. An examination of the registers of the different rooms will show but very few visits on the part of the parents. This is not as it should be. If the schools are visited occasionally by those most concerned, it shows both teachers and scholars that others besides themselves are interested in the work, and Spurs them on to greater efforts. Visitors are always welcome at any hour in any of the departments. To induce them to come visitors days have been established, at which times informal exercises will be taken part in by the scholars. Notice of these days will be given to the parents of those children attending the rooms to be examined.
The repairs on the schools during the past year have been but slight, but the estimates for the current year should include a sum for painting the central schoolhouse and for erecting a fence around the park and Hawthorne Street schools.
The school accommodation not only in the center but at both the North and South ends of the town is in a very unsatisfactory condition. The Tufts Cove department is in a small, low, dilapidated building, without light or ventilation, and wanting in the most ordinary conveniences. In the center of the town there are two rooms outside of the central school, one in what is known as the Elliott school, a light, airy room, but without any playground except the street; the other in the town hall, where the children are confined in a dark, on wholesome atmosphere, which at times is almost unbearable. At recess the pupils attending this room have the privilege of playing in an alleyway 5 ft wide, or of using the public street, one of the main thoroughfares of the town. To add to these inconveniences the police court is held in an adjoining room, and it is no uncommon occurrence for the children to know the details of the cases tried there; this can have anything but a beneficial effect on the morals of the young.
Woodside school is as far as the accommodation is concerned a charity school, as it is by the courtesy of the sugar refinery officials held in one of the rooms of the old dwelling house. of this room there is nothing to be said in its favor; it is utterly unfit in every way for the confinement, even for a short time, of the little ones. The facts are certainly nothing but a disgrace to the inhabitants of a town the size of Dartmouth, and call for immediate remedy. A scheme for increased accommodation will shortly be laid before you, and I trust will meet with your hearty and warm approval, more especially when it is remembered what the town has gained by taking charge of both the Woodside and Tufts Cove schools.
The School Banks established some two years ago continue to be well patronised. Since their inauguration the amount deposited has been $2,363.29. Of this amount there has been transferred to the Government Savings Bank $1,806, $227.38 repaid to depositors in cash, for a total of $2,033,38, leaving a balance in hand of $329.91. $300 of which is on deposit in the Savings Bank, Halifax, at 3 1/2 % interest, and $29.91 in the Union Bank in the current account.
As will be seen by the annexed statement the cost of the schools for the year was $7,081.51. to this, however, must be added the sum of 457 interest on schoolhouse debentures paid by the council, and say $62 for an audited accounts, making a total cost for the year of $7,600. The number of pupils on the roll was $1,132, being an increase of 71 over the previous year, and of 305 over the year 1881. This shows the per capita charge of tuition for each pupil to be $6.72 being $0.08 less than last year, and $1.43 less than 1881. In this connection it is interesting to note what tuition in other towns costs. I have been unable to obtain the figures from more than three places, but find that Halifax pays $10.87; Truro $8.65; Yarmouth, $12 per capita. If the government grant is deducted from the total cost, the rate payers are only assessed the sum of $5.36 for each pupil, an amount very much less than what has to be paid in a private school for the most elementary teaching. These facts should prove to any unbiased mind that the schools in Dartmouth are managed at a very low rate, and should silence forever the reports which have been heard so frequent of late that the present board of school commissioners is an extravagant one.
The board are endeavoring to make some arrangements whereby the branches taught in the high school may be taught in Dartmouth, as they feel that it would be much better for the children to finish their school education in their own town then to be put to the expense of ferriage and they walk through some most undesirable quarters to obtain what ought to be theirs on this side of the harbor. I trust that if it is found this can be done it will meet with general approval. I append here with a list of the staff of teachers for the current year, showing their grade, department, amount of salary paid by the town, amount of government grant, and the total present salary.
And remain, ladies and gentlemen, your obedient servant,
A.C. Johnston, Chairman Board of School Commissioners.
Dartmouth, January 10th, 1890.
Staff of Teachers, 1890
Board School Commissioners, Dartmouth: Statement of Receipts and Expenditure for Year ended December 31st, 1889
Dartmouth Municipal Court: Business for Year ended December 31st 1889