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THE OMNIBUS. I

Ammanford Police Court.

Ammanford Urban Council. I

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Ammanford Urban Council. I The ordinary meeting of the above Council was held at the Y.M.C.A. Institute on the 31 st ult., when the following were pre- sent: Mr. J. Evan Jones, J.P., Chairman; Mr. David George, Vice-chairman; Lieut.- Col. W. N. Jones, Mr. B. R. Evans, Mr. J. C. Shaw, Mr. Evan Lewis, Rev. John Morgans, Mr. John Harries, Mr. Evan Evans, Mr. John Davies, and Mr. Wm. Evans; together with the Clerk (Mr. T. M. Evans, M.A.), the Surveyor (Mr. David Thomas), and the Rate Collector (Mr. T. J. Rees). ENTRANCE TO AMMANFORD I A lengthy discussion took place regarding the lane which leads to the new sidings at Ammanford Station arising out of a letter re- ceived from the Railway Company. Mr. John Davies enquired whether the Council w4te the owners, and whether they were the persons who should repair the road. Mr. Wm. Evans said that the letter re- ceived from the Company, asking the Council to make the necessary improvements, did not prove that they were the owners. The Surveyor remarked that the Council had placed some metalling on the lane some years ago. ROADS COMMITTEE. J The Roads Committee's report was read adopted. The Surveyor was instructed to attend to the various matters arising out of the minutes, including the court wall in front of Ivy Cot- tage, together with the question of a com- munication received re Fenton Terrace. MEDICAL OFFICER'S REPORT. The report of the Medical Officer was read and adopted. The Medical Officer reported having in- spected the Infants' Department of Amman- ford School in company with the Surveyor, and they found that in some parts the floor was covered with water to a depth of three inches. The condition of the school was a menaoe to the children and the teachers. Mr. J. C. Shaw remarked that he did not think it was anything new. That had been going on for years. Mr. Evan Evans said that if there were drains there, they were choked up. The Caretaker had to carry away the water before she could proceed to the school. Mr. John Harries thought the best course would be for the Council to pass a resolution calling the attention of the Amman Valley Group of Managers to the matter. Mr. W. N. Jones remarked that the Amman Valley Group of Managers had been acquainted of it already. He proposed that the Surveyor of the County Council, together with the local Medical Officer of Health and Surveyor, should meet and see as to what was necessary to put things in order. It did not matter who would have to pay the cost; it was of the greatest import- ance that the matter should be attended to, in order that the interests of the children should not be imperilled any longer. Mr. John Harries seconded the proposition, which was carried. FINANCE COMMITTEE. I The Finance Committee's report was read I and adopted. EXTENSION OF URBAN DISTRICT I BOUNDARY. Mr. Wm. Evans moved that the Council consider the advisability of extending the boundary of the Urban District. He referred to the formation of the Urban District sixteen years ago, and no motion of that kind had been moved since then. The Council should consider the matter at the present time, which was the proposition, in view of the coming sewerage scheme. It would be to the advan- tage of the people and also the Council. The people from outside the area should be asked to become joint owners. There were several strong reasons why the Council should extend the boundary. He (Mr. Evans) would not deal with those that evening, but he sug- gested that, if the Council agreed with the motion, a Committee of six or seven should be formed to go into the matter and bring sug- gestions forward. Mr. J. C. Shaw seconded the motion. Mr. W. N. Jones, in supporting the motion, referred to the formation of the Urban Area, and as the sewerage scheme was to be pro- ceeded with, they desired to see Ammanford much larger, so that more people could enjoy j the benefit of the scheme. They should form one large Urban Area. He thought that a large Urban Area would be very conducive 1 to the rates being lower. It would be very much better. Another very important reason was that if they decided on making it a large Urban Area, they would be able then to nanage their educational matters themselves, I ind they would be formed into an Authority i 0 look after the interests of the children of t he Valley. He agreed with Mr. Evans that i Committee should be appointed to go fully nto the matter. He supported the motion. I The motion was put to the meeting and inanimously carried. s The following were appointed as members I )f the Committee to consider the question, i ind bring to the Council the result of their deliberations:—Mr. J. Evan Jones (Chair- man), Mr. D. George (Vice-chairman), Mr. W. N. Jones, Mr. J. C. Shaw, Mr. John Davies, Mr. John Harries, and Mr. Wm. Evans. THE LIGHTING CHARGES. A letter was received from Mr. Edward Harries, solicitor, Swansea, declining to accept, on behalf of Mr. W. Herbert, The Saw Mills, Ammanford, the offer made by the Council of an increase of 10s. per lamp per annum for street lighting and one penny per unit for private lighting and power for a period of two years. Mr. Herbert based his claim on the figures of his returns for 1914, and applied for an increase which would bring him a return to within 130 of his returns in 1914. He applied for the forthcoming increases:-2d. per unit extra for private lighting, I d. extra for free wiring, Id. per unit extra for power, and 25 per cent. extra for street and public lighting. There was only a small difference between the offer of the Council and the application of Mr. Herbert—a difference of a penny per unit in respect of private lighting, the Coun- cil's offer amounting to 6d. per unit and Mr Herbert's claim being for 7d. There was a general discussion of the ques- tion, and a variety of opinions were ex- pressed. The Clerk remarked that Mr. Herbert had submitted three different statements, and that one statement was of not much use. Particulars of the statements were read by the Clerk. Mr. John Harries said he was anxious for a settlement of the differences between the Council and Mr. Herbert. They had re- ceived statements all along from Mr. Herbert which he had changed. He (Mr. Harries) d:d not know whether it would not be advisable for the matter to be adjourned to some future date, as it was possible Mr. Herbert might change again. The Chairman suggested that it would be more polite for Mr. Harries to say additional statements. Mr. John Davies said he thought the last offer was businesslike, and it came from the hands of a lawyer. Mr. J. C. Shaw enquired whether the Council would be permitted to check Mr. Herbert's figures. The Clerk remarked that Mr. Herbert had only casually undertaken to allow his books to be inspected. Mr. John Harries proposed that Mr. Herbart should be asked to come before the Roads Committee. Mr. Wm. Evans said that the matter had been considered for the last twelve months. They would benefit nothing by delaying the matter. He should like to know how the increase claimed by Mr. Herbert compared with the price of coal. The price of coal had increased by 100 per cent. Mr. D. George mentioned that Mr. Her- bert based his claim on his returns for 1914, and that men were not in such good circum- stances as they were in 1914, and that Mr. Herbert had neglected the lighting of the streets, &c. Mr. John Davies and Mr. D. George had a few heated exchanges of opinions about the matter. Mr. J. C. Shaw proposed that the Council should appoint a Committee to investigate the matter, and that Mr. Herbert' s statements be also considered, the Council to be advised of the Committee's investigation. Mr. Wm. Evans said theyyould be in the I same position as they were at present. The Chairman said that at the special meeting some were in favour of granting Mr. Herbert's application for 7d., aad others were in favour of 6id. being granted. Mr. Evan Evans said that was only the feeling of one or two members. The Chairman said that he was expressing the feeling of those present—all of them. Mr. Wm. Evans: I beg to move that we consider the matter and come to a decision. It is high time that we should decide this evening and give Mr. Herbert a definite answer. Mr. John Davies agreed with Mr. Evans' remarks, and described how the demands of Mr. Herbert were reasonable. The cost of lighting was cheap, and the power was also cheap. He was not afraid to use it. He was using the power himself, and he was willing to pay Mr. Herbert the 7d. as applied for by him. He proposed that the Council should grant the application of Mr. Herbert. Mr. D. George said that in other towns it had been found, as the result of investigations made by the Council, that the prices, were lower than in Ammanford. Mr. Wm. Evans proposed that Mr. Herbert be given 25 per cent. increase on public lighting, Id. per unit increase for power, and 2d. per unit extra for private lighting, that arrangement to hold good for twelve months without prejudice, on the dis- tinct understanding that the agreement held good. Mr. John Davies seconded. Mr. D. George/Proposed an amendment that they offer 4d. per unit more than their previous offer. He did not think Mr. Her- bert himself expected to receive the amount applied for. He would then receive 10s. per lamp per annum for public lighting and f.,d. per unit for private lighting, that arrangement to hold good for twelve months. IVir. Evan Evanss^econded. The amendment was defeated, five voting for the original proposition and two for the amendment. CORRESPONDENCE. I A communication was received from a local movement suggesting that the Council should convene a public meeting to consider the question of the Housing Scheme. There was considerable bitterness in the exchanges of opinion between some of the members, Mr. Wm. Evans remarking that the senders of the letter were not ratepayers. Mr. D. George thought that the ratepayers should be consulted before rejecting the scheme. They were entitled to have the scheme explained, and the Council could find out how many houses were required. It was only fair that the ratepayers should have the scheme explained to them. He proposed that the Council should convene a general meeting for the purpose of explaining the scheme. Mr. Wm. Evans moved an amendment that the Council itself consider the matter first, and then that the ratepayers should be jiven an explanation of the scheme. During the course of his remarks Mr. Evans said they I ;hould decide one way or another. It was lot right that the agenda of the Council, which was a sacred document, should be :aken to any other public body. Mr. Evan Evans: It has never been done I Mr. Wm. Evans referred to two meetiags I -vhere the agenda had been produced. It was finally resolved that the Council ,hould hold a special meeting to consider the "lousing Scheme, and that a ratepayers' meet- ng should be held, when the scheme would )e explained to them.

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