EST. 1903 - Presenting global influential leaders from business, labour, education & government through events
Smith, W. Richmond
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The speaker's belief in the principle of municipal ownership of all essential public utilities. His regard as little short of criminal that any Municipal Council would part with the ownership and ultimate control of a franchise involving the use of the streets for the creation of a public service used by a majority of the citizens. Defining a public utility. Essential public utilities confined to services for the supply of water, sewage facilities, light, and urban transportation by street cars. The speaker's belief that the water supply and sewerage systems of any municipality ought to be both owned and operated by the municipality, under the supervision and amenable to the instructions of the Medical Health Department; and that sound municipal administration dictates that no municipality has any right to undertake the conduct of a public service which is not used by at least a majority of the ratepayers. The consequences of ignoring these rules. Over-municipalization as the result, which will work a great injustice to the poorest ratepayers in the community, and strike at the very root of municipal credit. The speaker's firm conviction of these thoughts, after a close and careful study of municipally-conducted enterprises in Great Britain, and the reason that he is making this address today. Ways in which over-municipalization of public utilities has struck a serious blow at the whole fabric of municipal credit in Great Britain, despite such enterprises being subject to the closest supervision and the severest restrictions of the Imperial Parliament at Westminster. Paying serious attention to the experience of Great Britain in this regard, bearing in mind that the safeguards thrown around such enterprises by the national Government there have no parallel in our country. Estimating and appreciating the wide difference in both general and local conditions: a detailed review of essential differences, and how public ownership operates in Great Britain, with examples. Also, a consideration of differences in local conditions in the various cities of the United Kingdom which make for the success of municipally-conducted enterprises, also with illustrative instances. Comparisons with instances in Canada. A summary of the results of municipal ownership as applied to a telephone service in Great Britain and in Canada.