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. BOARD OF GUARDIANS.

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BOARD OF GUARDIANS. The fortnightly meeting was held on Satur- day last, when there were present:—Mr. Evan Jones (Chairman), Miss Parry (Vice), Mrs. Price, Messrs. F. T. Bircham (L. G. Inspector), J. Ll. Jones, E. M. Roberts, Robert Davies, L. J. Davies, J. J. Edwards, Robert Jones, Wm. Richards, and T. R. Dakin (Assistant Clerk). The balance in the Treasurer's hands was re- ported to be jE528 16s. 6d., and in the Relieving Officer's hands 99 6s. ld. During the fortnight 158 out-door paupers hid been relieved with 934 Is. 6d. as against 934 13s. 6d. to 158 paupers last year. THE HOUSE. Messrs. W. Richards and R. Jones reported that they had visited the House, and were satis- fied that the inmates were properly cared for. They called the attention of the Building Com- mittee to the water which percolated the walls in several places. The Master reported that there were 26 in- mates in the Workhouse last week, and that 23 vagrants had been relieved dudng the fort night. John Davies, Llawrybettws, applied for an allowance of tobacco weekly. This was granted. Mr. R. Davies remarked that he had heard complaints that some of the inmates who had been presented with tobacco, had sold it. It was observed that tobacco had been pre- sented to those who did not indulge in tne weed, and that it was this class who had sold it in exchange for something else. The Chairman said they could not well pro- hibit people from sending such gifts. The matron's application for three days leave of absence was granted. VARIOUS. A letter was read from J. Hughes, Glan- 'rafon, stating thai; she had heard that some anonymous letters had been read at the last meeting concerning her, and demanding to see them. The Clerk's reply that her letter was the only one read, and that the Guardians had said no- thing at the Board to injure her, was approved. A letter was read applying for the tenancy of the house, the writer stating that he had been informed that it would shortly become vacant. The Guardians decided to leave the whole matter to the Relieving Officer and Mr. Wm. Richards, as before. It was decided to leave on the table a letter from Hunslet Union, anent the apprenticing of Workhouse children, and providing and main- taining a small home for their accommoda- tion until able to earn their own livelihood. The Assistant Clerk reported that four ex- emptions had been granted under the Vaccina- tion Act, 1898, up to the 31st of December last year. It was decided, on the 'motion of [Mr. L. J. Davies, seconded by Miss Parry, to adopt the resolution passed at the meeting of the 'Rural District Council in favour of disarmament. THE FLOOD AND ITS RESULT IN TOWN. The Chairman called attention to the incon- venience and loss occasioned by the flood to the tenants of Plasey, and urged that provision should be made to succour the sufferers. Mr. Bircham advised the Guardians to con- fide the matter to the Relieving Officer. He was surprised to hear that some of them would prefer starving or drowning to coming into the House. The Guardians adopted the Inspector's sug- gestion, and left the matter to the discretion of the Relieving Officer. ADDRESS BY MR. BIRCHAM, L.G. INSPECTOR. Mr. Bircham said the greatest compliment he could give was that he had very little to tell them. It was a year ago since he was here be- fore. Bala Union was a difficult Union to ad- minister economically, because their purse was a very small one, but he did not imply by this that the Union was neglected. He sometimes received from other Unions complaints of the manner in which they were :treated, but he never received any complaint from here. The pauperism is 3 per cent. of the population, but, of course, two or three families added to the list made a considerable difference. It was not so easy to decrease it in a small Union as a large one. Last year, he had had great ex- perience of what misery was. He had been five months among the Unions where the great strike exited in South Wales, where thousands were thrown out of work. This Union should be congratulated that it was not likely to suffer as they had been obliged to do there last year. The amount of rates collected, and the whole taxation of the country, up to Lady Day last year, was just published. From that it ap- peared that in Bala Union there was levied under poor rates something like 95,700. The rates come to 94,500, and this with the repay- ments from County Council, &c., made a to;tal »f £ 5,700. This was all levied under the head Poor Rates; this was not a proper term, be- cause out of that E5,700, only £2,000 went to ¡ Poor Relief in any shape or form, and this in- ;luded also the expenses such as maintenance )f lunatics in asylums, salaries, building and repairs, everything connected Mith the relief >f the poor. £ 3,000, over which they had no j control whatever they were credited with spending it away on the poor. This sum was made up as follows-.—County Rate, £ 1,290; Rural District Councils, F-367; School Boards, E660. There also appeared an item of £43 in respect of Parish Council expenses, and he hoped they got jE43 of good out of them. The above sums, together with those expended on Assessment Committee, Parochial Payments, &c., made up the aforementioned amount. In a word, this Union spent on Poor Relief a rate of Is. 9Jd. in the E, and on other purposes con- 2 nected with relief 2s. 3d. in the E. The whole rates (excluding the Bala Urban District) in this Union came to 4s. 2d. in the fl-that in- cluded all expenses. In the whole of England and Wales the average pauperism was 2'3 per cent., and the cost per head 13s. 3d. The average pauperism here was 3 per cent., and the cost per head 4s. Id. The pauperism was high in a small Union, because it is divided among a small population, and because a small Union was obliged to keep a staff the same as a large Union. As regards the Workhouse here, the comfort and care which the inmates received was creditable to the officers con- cerned, and to them, who, no doubt, took a great interest in the institution. The vagrant wards were still in an incomplete state. He hoped they would be put in use at an early date. There was no legislation passed in Par- liament with reference to the work of Guard- ians last year, with the exception of the Vac- cination Act. He presumed that arrangements had already been made with the vaccinators. He had in some Unions urged them to do so before the end of the year, as failing this the Local Government Board made the necessary arrangements themselves. He only hoped that it would prove a success. The Chairman said they were all indebted to Mr. Bircham for his remarks. They had al- ways strived to do all they could for the poor.

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