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Neath Priest's Poetry Criticised.…

--RATES AT SWANSEA.

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RATES AT SWANSEA. THE estimates of the vaiious spending bodies at Swansea, having been overhauled, and. in some instances, amende ), it now be- comes possible to deal with the subject of Ihe local rates with the guidance afforded by de- finite figures. As OoTfipafeu wn.11 uie mi- niates for the year just ended, those adopted by the Council show an aggregate increase of £ 4,600. Of his sum. interest and sinking fund of the borough debt account for £ 2,355; the expenditure of the Waters and Sewers Committee, about £900; and that of the Streets Committee. JB700. Other committees anticipate a stationary or reduced expendi- 'I "11 1 ture, out. whether the anticipations win ue lealised is a point of considerable doubt. The depressing feature of the budget is the fact that whilst the outlay on the water supply is advancing by prodigious leaps, the revenue derived therefrom appears to be at a stand- still not a penny more is expected from water rents than was received last year. And similarly stationary is the revenue from the Slaughter-house and the rents of properties under the Artisan Dwellings Act. Then the increase from all other sources is only £ 300. The years which ended with the 25th March was begun with about £ 8.000 in hand a.s working capital, but the rates levied, of 3s. 4d. in the JB. were considerably below the requirements, with the result that for the current year there was a deficit of £ 4,553 at starting, and hence the disturbing propor- tions of the jump upward in the rates. The amount to be provided by means of a gener al district rate is £ 72,912; the total rateable value of the borough is £ 431,205, and the nett producible value of a. penny rate for the purposes of the general district rate is £ 1,453. A rate of 4s. 2d. in the £ is ex- pected to realise £ 72.653, or £ 259 less than the estimated expenditure, but this difference it is believed will be covered and a few hun- dreds of pounds left in hand by the revenue derived from the increases during the year in the aggregate rateable value of the bor- ough. The School Board rate of Is. 8d. in the £--it would have been at least a penny more but for £ 1.500 somewhat unexpectedly received from the Imperial Exchequer as a grant to .a necessitous district—the poor rate. Free Library, Intermediate, and Technical Instruction rates are expected to amount to- gether to about 4s. in the £ so that the total rates for the year—irrespective of water rent -will be equal to 8s. 2d. in the L, or lOd. in the £ more than in the year which ended a few days ago. The foregoing figures which provide little or nothing for unrote-een contingencies in the matter of expenditure, whereas all likely increases—under the Edu- cation Act excepted-in revenue are taken into account, indicate how serious is the financial position of Swansea. It is clear that the town is in a pecuniary sense out- running the constable, and that the duty Is imposed upon the local bodies of the borough to apply themselves in earnest to the work of reducing the expenditure. Under the provisions of the Education Act, Swansea is to receive about £4,000 a year more than hitherto in imperial grants, but it is open to doubt whether the benefit of the increase can be enjoyed during the months that will elapse before September 30th, the date fixed upon for giving effect to the measure. As the arrangement- decided upon deprives the Voluntary Schools of any aid for the six months, it, is reasonable to infer that the extra. grant. will be withheld, and in this way any relief which might be expected, by reason of the Education Act. must be de- ferred. As indicative of one factor which may affect the estimate of expenditure pre- judicially, the circumstance might be men- tioned that about thirty of the Corporation officials are applying for advances, and that if their requests, as set out, are conceded, an increase would result in the permanent charges of between JB450 and J3500 a. year. It is unlikely, however, that this will happen; indeed it is not improbable that the committee struck to deal with the applications may be able to devise economies to set-off against any increases that may be recom- mended in the salaries of individuals.

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SWANSEA JOTTINGS.

SWANSEA FINANCE COMMITTEE.…

: NEATH NOTES.

ELECTIC LIGHTING COMMITTEE.I

NEATH TOWN COUNCIL.

Rough on Mr. Winston Churchii-.|

I IN LIGHTER VEIN.

More Municipal Dwelling-houses.

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SWANSEA SHIP-OWNER SUED.

Valley Tinplate Works Busy…

Ben Tillett for Carmarthen.…

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