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Chapter Five: Council Minutes - 1900
|The election for 1900 was held on December 22 of 1899. Voters selected one Reeve, four councilors and one School Trustee (to replace Henry Kendall) for a one-year term and 3 for a two-year term. The nominators and seconders have been included as this information offers an overview of how the village was divided in terms of local politics. It appears that there was some last minute manoeuvring as Arthur Greenfield resigned his post as a school trustee on the day of the election to that he could seek election as a councillor. Trowbridge, on the previous council was defeated. The German connection is obvious with the nominations and this is discussed in the chapter entitled "German Migration and Ottawa".|
|The results, recorded by Walter N. Barry, the Village Clerk (an upholsterer living at 6 7th St.) were as follows:|
|Note: "*" = elected, "R" = Resigned the nomination, "+" = See elsewhere in table, "Acc" = Acclaimed|
Overview of the Year:
For this particular year the writer has not detailed each and every activity of the council. What follows is a selection of some of the events and concerns that occupied the council.
The first meeting of the new council took place on Jan. 9th with the Reeve hoping that "harmony would prevail" this year. As with the last year most of the councils activities involved local improvements with numerous petitions and concerns for drainage and sidewalks. The ongoing struggle with the railway companies regarding assessment and track crossings continued with the Canada Atlantic Railway taking the Village to court to appeal an "excessive assessment". The court action cost the Village $15 and it was represented by J. Omeara. The Village won!
John F. Watson, a civil servant at 13 7th Ave. was given the task of auditing the books for 1899. Thomas Redmond, possibly a son of M. Redmond of 49 2nd St., was appointed to the Board of Health along with Alexander W. Milne, a packer with the Post Office living at 182 Canal Rd.
John Bowers was nominated for assessor but an amendment substituted and accepted William. A. Cole (it appears that he was a non-resident). The annual salary for the job was $50 and he was required to post a $500 bond to guarantee his services and collect all taxes by December 15 of the year. The assessment rates for the year included:
The Village was notified by Messrs. Latchford, McDougall and Daly that their client, Catherine Pelletier of 147 East Ave. was claiming $1,000 for injuries received as a result of a defective sidewalk on East Ave. across from Mrs. Logans house at 70 East Ave. Council felt there was "no just cause" and refused to pay.
Another legal item involved the responsibility for damage caused by improper drainage. The Reeve along with Ballantyne were to investigate what would be needed to install a system of drainage and if the Village was responsible for damages if the problems were not fixed immediately. In addition the Reeve was empowered to find a "first class lawyer" to fight the Countys "excessive" assessment.
Council donated $100 to the Ottawa/Hull Fire Relief Committee to help those who had suffered in the devastating fire that had destroyed a large part of Ottawa/Hull.
The council appointed a deputation of County Councilors Graham and McLean? along with the Reeve to meet with the federal government (most probably the Dept. of Railways and Canals) to discuss the changes in the bridge to be built across the canal connecting the Village to the City. While no detail is given this was probably the beginning of discussions on Pretoria Bridge.
Charles Rhomheld again occupied councils time. The 1900 directory lists him as a painter and therefore his position as Village Constable must have been part-time. In early February he was directed to attend all council meetings. In July he tendered his resignation as constable and health inspector. Up to that date he had collected $51 for dog taxes (for which he received 10%) and $2 for B of H and $5 for inspecting yards and closets (outhouses). A petition from G. Barrett (an 1899 councillor) and others recommended Leon Sabourin, a labourer living a 161 Main St. for the positions of constable and health inspector for the remainder of the year. He was empowered to prosecute all cattle and horses running at large and receive half of the fine. In December council requested an immediate report on the status of dog taxes and legal action. It appears that the money gained from this source was a major item for the village.
A letter from C. Robertson, a civil servant on 7th Ave. complained about parties at 23 Cedar St. and asked that the residents restrain their dog. Council agreed that if the dog became a future menace it would be done away with.
The clerk received $1.50 for lighting 6 fires @ .25 each in the town hall during the winter.
John W. Obriens house at 29 2nd St. was disinfected at a cost of $2.
The final motion of this council involved the replacement of the missing screens for the cellar of the town hall!
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