Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 9, 1908, Lethbridge, Alberta
LETHBRIDGE HERALD. WEDNESDAY. SEPTEMBER 9, 1908, The Rutherford GoMrnnrient Led the Way For All Canada in Government Ownership Government System Now Comprises 1.000 MileS, and 700 Miles of Rural Telephone Lines ar GOVERNMENTS 'PHONE POLICY Albtrta Govtmount First In Canada to Obtain a Government Owned Teltphonc_Systtm. 'the youngest of alilhe adian provinces, has. it to her credit that she ledltKe every, portion of the Dominion in 'government own- ership of a-telephone system. ;Coilsi5teiiit- with! its attitude toward corporations, as well as its platform policy of public ot utilities, tiie. Kuuiertord govern- ment in the 'first monthsofjits -exist- ence decided advanced' 'telephone policy. There were already in existence in the province a couple of short; independent and ex- tending from'Strathcona to L'ethbridge the Bell line ran. owned by a corpora- tion which 'already possessed a mon- opoly in many parts of Canada, charg- ing such rates as it pleased. There had been aii-outcry against this''mon- opoly at several points, but no definite had ;been taken. The Alberta government in tiis in- stance as in many other cases, did no talking but quietly proceeded to- do' things. At .the first, session of :the House an approprition of was made in. government system of telephones. No expensive and- time-killing commission of experts was appointed-to inquire into an obvious, monopoly, as was done in another province, ;or to-tell the gov- ernment they had made -ap theix minds to own. a telephone system and break a monopoly. But instead a con- struction crew was set to work under the supervision of an' expert, and the Alberta -government's .Investigation, into telephone possibilities became an actual experiment of the thing itself; of the grant was thus scent in actual building. y .T v. along the C. N. R., was with a network of these lines. These rural lines can scarcely be considered as-a directly profit-aMc pro- position fmancially.nntil there is mom settlement. As such they would not have been built by a corporation, but the government line which will short- ly be a paying, nssct, is built first for the convenience of all the people of tothe province and profits are not ex-j v k.4, i J H.' UO'J LI i U i i -TI.I W 'Jij I Ji- it. tli C1 'UJ, telephone to a great extent, and-.whose !ns formerly to cany their orio Ti frftc .-i 1 i A F .__j exchanges arc always remunerative, j phone policy of the Rutherford gov- ernment is one of the most striking ami successful features in nn adminis- tration that -is everywhere business- like. ALBERTA MAKES (Continued from Page Thirteen.) partmom's 'administration of the law is a measure passed List session by become goverriment, offici- als on .salary with district bailiffs at various points. This doing away with the fee system commonly in use is of very great advantage to the people in general and particularly.to the settlers :n more remote villages. Titles Offices. these came .under the attorney gener- al's supervision a night staff was pat ionir-er.-irij.-v :it bp'-.h' oiitfis until all arrears in work were made Since then the system-has been that every document received at these offices for registration .shall be returned on the same dny. Searching of titles may now be done also by long-distance telephone, greatly saving expense to the persons concerned who formely had to go personally or send a lawyer ake the search. It is worthy of .too. thai Attorney General Cross s visit to Ottawa last spring from the Dominion govevn- the'assurance fund of over -.I-M ,1 nu. lunu oi over the _ land .titles offices were which had "boon retained by the -_ _ .e oces were wc a oon retane by the bupremc court in Al- taken over from Federal admimstra- federal authorities after autonomy. IS BENEFICIAL Judicial System This Government Meets Needs of People in all Parts of Province- Among the many admirable features m the plan of provincial organization carried out by the Alberta govern- one which ,has already. proved itself of immense practical benefit to the people of the province, is the new judicial system.- Three years ago, at the date of in- auguration, there were only three judges of; the Supreme Court- resident in Alberta, and sittings of this court were-held at seven of. the centres of population in the province, and- liti- gants were obliged to attend the- court at these points, frequently at great expense to themselves. To Temedy these arid supplement -a judicial system which was yearly growing more inadequate to the needs of the the Al- berta government lias established a new judiciary consisting of Supreme Court of live a .District Court system, also -made-up of five judges. The main advantage to the people df Alberta in the District, Court system is.'tliat the five District Court judges cover in their circuits, mors than fifty places in the province; -thai; is, they hold court at more than fifty points, and these sittings .of'the court 'take place three or four times -a while in the large centres of population the court is naturally held more frequently. ._, These arer the conditions judges go to the people, "not the peo- ple to the judges, for the long, expen- sive journeys of litigants formerly made to the cities where court was held are memories of the past. It is noteworthy in this' connection that Judge Noel, one of the District Court judges, leaves next week to lold the first session of any court, in north country. He will visit on iis tour Athabasca, Landing, Lesser Slave Lake. Peace Kiver Landing Fort Vermilion and Fort .McMurray; md. is prepared to try any cases of itigation that may there. This first judicial visit, historic in he annals of the north, recalls the 'act that in 1880 Judge Eouleau, of. -he Territorial came from ''Old Sattleford to Edmonton to hold the Irst sitting of any court ever held in Edmonton. There was but one case before man named James Glass (Slim im) being charged by one Murphy the theft of a watch. Beloro, ;he new machinery-of the law could- be got into proper working order the thief absconded, however. Tooday, twenty-eight years as a centre of advanced and 'cosmo- politan civilization, sends out to -the lands beyond the frontier -a pioneer in the legal way, blazing a the most progressive machinery of the law which is being so effective in Alberta. The District Courts, by the Act which, established are em- powered to deal with civil cases in- volving amounts up to as these are the very cases that should be quickly decided and at small ex- oense. Cases- involving larger -unounts arc reserved for the higher courts, because in their cases the ex- pense is not so 'important a point. cases held at the District Court .the vitnesses do not have to travel .so ar, and, as a result, there is a .large saving in witness fees to the litigants. In addition to the saving of ex- pense, an advantage to be derived fryia Lhe new system is the greater despatch with which cases1 are set- tled. Formerly the litigants had an anxious waiting' period that some- times extended six months, -or even, a year. At present all cases for the District- Courts -are disposed of with- i in one month or two. Furthermore, i these courts are empowered by the Act creating them to deal with cases of a higher court, so. that how liti- gants are not obliged to carry to the big centres interlocutory action in Supreme Court cases; in othero words, power has been given to District Court judges to act as local judges of the Supreme Court. As these courts also have- all to do in connection with the prolate oi es- tates, these transactions are now :-it- tended to with much greater facility than formerly. Still another power has been .given to the District Courts in the interests of the are given ji-rrisdic- :ion to detfl ivith criminal cases if the accused elects 'to be tried .hem. Tliis is especially convenient, is they are always available at tne ocal centre, where prisoners .held. Here the criminal, instead f waiting for the next sitting of the luprerne Court, may elect to be tried romptly by the District dvantage not enjoyed under the. 'erritorial regime. How clearly this advantage is ap- reciated by those who have Jaw ases on hand is evident from the ;atistics of some of the larger Dis- trict Courts. These figures have been obtained for the first six months of .this year and the month of December, 19'07, when the District Courts assum- ed their- functions. The statistics show that at most points the accused in criminal cases elected to be tried by the District Court judges. They were At criminal cases, 10 civil cases. At criminal cases, J15 civil cases. At criminal cases, 20 civil cases. At criminal esses, (M civil cases. Macieod Elevator Surnsd. August Alboria Pacific Company's elevator at Grant, with its contents, was destroyed by fire last eight.