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MR T. JOHNftTONr AT ALL SAINTS' SCHOOLROOM. Mr Thomas Johnston, one of the candidates for tho vacant Lsith Ward seat in tho City Council, addressed a meeting of ratepayers last evening in All Saints' Schoolroom. About twenty-five ratepayers were present, and Mr J. Mathewsjwfts voted to tho chair. The Chairman, in introducing the candidate, said that thn ward had lost a good member in Or Leo Smith. Mr Johnston said tlrs was the second tirrc tint he had contested an electi nin L?ith Ward, the previous occasion having been some nine years ago. His reason for coming forward was tint he held it to be a dipgiace to Leith Ward to all w a walk-over for want of candidate.'. He wo id not go in for making great reformations all at once if elected —it was a gecat mistake for anyone to think that could be done he would have to learn the road for threa or six months. The Corporation we.e short of funds-that waa tho old story. In former years, oertainly, thore was plenty of moacy. and the Oouooil did not li now how to spend it fast enough—the result being that now the Council had only tho fragments that had behind to carry on the works of the City. In Leith Ward they w re much neglected : he held that tho streeta-excepting George, King, and Cumberland streets, and perhaps Castle street—were not being attended to as they should ; and one road that should certainly be looked afcor was the one leading to the cemetery. There was an annual profit from the cemeteries of 1300, and while that was so the road should not lemain in its present condition. A water pipe should also lie taken up to the cemetery, to that the water cou'd bo handy for those who wished to it for flowtr.i. If returned it would he his f-ndeavo** to gc>t theie two things carried out; lie not rest till he had them, and ho would mako it warm for the Council if he did not get thern.—{Ap;>lausp.) He was not satisfied with the way in wlii.-h the Bitmica! Gardens weie woiked, and it was h's opinion that they were dwindling down to simply a gra«3 paddock. Leith Ward was not looked on in a proper light by the Council. They regarded it as a place tacked on to the rtst of the City, but he would show that it was not bo. The municipal rates ond the water rate? contributed by th<j wards were as follnwß:—South, L 3 999'; High. L 10,907 ; Bel', L 7.825 ; Leith, L 7.020. So it was no,t by any me ins the ler-sfc of the ward?, and yet could only get a few loads of screenings thrown on their rosds every year. He was not finding fault with the present counc Jlors $ I} 6 pnjy said they did not nersevcro enough to get what they wanted. Leith Ward paid nearly double the'amount paid by Pouth Ward, and yet the latter got good roads—all through the energy of its councillors. He thought there should be a bridge over the Leith in Leith street, and with a c.rtain amount of agitation it might be got. There was no use saying that there was no money, for anything thit High Ward or South Ward wanted was always given. The had b?en tco lax with their money in years past." It was for'want of prudence and forethought that a lot of money w>W not caved. The City's debt was now Lfio3,o(o Well, they cortainly had a debt, but they alio hid a pinking fund. He did not fay that they would not usurp that fund some day. Tho Chairman (solemuly): You can't do that.

Mr Johnston (cheerfully): Well, I don't know—they do thinjrs sometimes The Chaibman (with additional solemnity): You can't. Mr Johnston continued, with reference to the proposed bridge over the Leitb, that he did not want an iron one like that over the railway—not one of ths 1 800,000 ones ! They did not want one like that, but would be satisfied with a foot-bridge. He thought proper supervision of the Corporation's affairs waa required. There was a lawsuit with the Fernhill Company, and although the Corporation gained the o»se they lost L3SO by it; and again, in the case of Sar:ood, Fun, and fwen v, the Corporation, although it resulted in favor of the latter, a snm ot L.1,464 wa* lost. If proper precautions bad be n taken when the drains were put in, that lawsuit would never have been before the Court.' The waterworks was, he was credibly informed, a paying speculation, there being now a balance of about L 7,000 to the credit of the account. That might be cash, or paper; but anyway it was on paper. The net profit was L2 500 per annum, and as that was the case he thought it was timo the Ouuncil reduced the piiceof water to the outlying districts. He was given to understand that thera was between LIO.COO and L 12.000 to; the credit of trie ga* account; and it was'time' the price was rcduoed when gas could be made elsewhere at la 9d per I,oooft. If returned he' would be Btrictly honest in all liii dealings—' (hear, hear) —and would attach himself to no' party. Ho would not be hoodwinked, bufc> would know everything about a matter before hosajd " Yes" or "No."—(Applau3e.) Incon-' elusion, he thanked them for hearing him and offered to answer any questions, •' A f ter two unimportant questions had be-n put and answered, tfiv F, GPAHAy moved, and Mr Latham seconded—" That Mr Johnston is i the most fit and proper person to be tbc repre>sentativo of Laith Ward in the City Council." The motion was carried nem. con.

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THE MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS., Issue 8005, 6 September 1889

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THE MUNICIPAL ELECTIONS. Issue 8005, 6 September 1889

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