Vancouver has no money for improvements – June 7, 1886

Communication received from Dr. McGuigan re: Voter’s List, no action taken. City of Vancouver charged 50 cents per day board for each City prisoner held in the provincial Jail. City unable to pay at this point, but asks that accounts be kept so they can pay in future. Royal City Planing Mills allowed to lay water pipe as requested, though City will have option to acquire it in future as part of civic water works. David Oppenheimer’s letter of May 23 replied to “on account of the want of funds the city is unable to undertake any general improvements.”

This transcript was made in 2012 by Transcribimus volunteer
Margaret Sutherland

original handwritten minutes here

City of Vancouver Archives
Series 23-A Volume 1 pages 28-31

Vancouver June 7th, 1886

The council met in the usual place on Monday June 7th 1886. Present His Worship the Mayor and all the Aldermen. Minutes of last meeting read and adopted.


From John. D. Ronald, Silsby Manufacturing Co, Gutta Percha Rubber Company and Noah. L. Piper and Sons City Clerk, Ottawa, re Naptha Lamps all referred to the Fire, Water and Light Committee.

Communication from Dr. McGuigan re Voter’s List, no action taken.

Communication from H.L. Mozley asking permission to leave his Barber Shop on the Street for a month, no action taken.

from Chas. Burns asking permission to erect Booth on Deighton Hotel Corner for the sale of refreshments on the first of July.

It was moved by Alderman Dunn seconded by Alderman Hemlow that the Board of Works deal with all matters in regard to street privileges for refreshment stands and regulate charges for same.
Communication from Joseph Huntly, provincial Jailer drawing attention to the prisoners in the City Jail and presenting account for board of said prisoners for the month of May.

Motion No [26]

Moved by Alderman L.A. Hamilton, seconded by Alderman Northcott that the scale of the charges, Viz 50 cts’ per diem as suggested by the Provincial gaoler be agreed to. That the account be transferred to the Board of Police Commissioners to vouch for the correctness of the same, and if correct that the City Clerk communicate with the proper authorities the decision arrived at. But pray the government owing to the present state of the City’s finances that the cost of maintenance should be allowed to stand over until the close of the next financial year. Carried.

Reports of the Boards of Health and Board of Works read and adopted.

Moved by Alderman Dunn seconded by Alderman Coldwell that permission be granted to the Royal City Planing Mills Company to lay the water pipe as recommended by the Board of Works subject to the following conditions:
(1) That in the event of the city acquiring at any time the control of a system of water works within the city that such permit may be cancelled on giving said company six months’ notice to that effect.
(2) Or that this corporation may acquire said water pipe and privilege by purchase at a price mutually agreed upon or in the event of failing to agree that the price be fixed by arbitration.
(3) That such permission shall not be given for a longer time than five years.



From property owners on Water Street between Cambie and Carroll praying that a By-Law be passed and debentures issued for the improvement of said Street.
Moved by Alderman E.P. Hamilton seconded by Alderman Coldwell that the petitions of property owners on Water Street be received and referred to the Board of Works.


A By-Law to provide for the assessment of property to be benefited by local improvements was read for the second and third time and passed.

Moved by Alderman Dunn seconded by Alderman E.P. Hamilton that By-Law No. 4 be engrossed signed and sealed by the Mayor and Clerk and a copy sent to the British Columbia Gazette for publication.


Alderman Coldwell introduced a By-Law as an amendment to Ald Dunn’s liquor By-Law which was read for the information of the council. Moved by Ald Dunn seconded by Alderman L.A. Hamilton that original By-Law be read a second time. Carried.

Moved by Alderman Humphries seconded by Alderman Coldwell that the Clerk be instructed to write to the provincial secretary for copies of the Charter of the City of Vancouver. Carried.

Motion No [28]

In reference to Mr. Oppenheimer’s communication to last meeting of the council it was moved by Alderman L.A. Hamilton seconded by Alderman Dunn that the Clerk be instructed to write to Mr. Oppenheimer informing him that on account of the want of funds the city is unable to undertake any general improvements and that such work can be done only under the Local Improvement By-Law.


Motion No [29]
Moved by Alderman Dunn seconded by Alderman Hemlow that a Committee consisting of the Mayor, Alderman Balfour and the Mover be appointed to wait on the Provincial Secretary on his next visit to Vancouver or any of the landed proprietors here to see that we get a suitable site for public buildings.


The council then adjourned to meet again on Thursday June 10th at 7:30 P.M. for the transaction of general business.

M.A. MacLean

Thos. F. McGuigan
City Clerk