Change to Provincial Police: 0050.0138

MAYOR AND THREE ALDERMEN RESIGN FROM MUNICIPAL SEATS. – Climax Came At Special Meeting Held On Thursday Evening Last. – Alderman Attridge Charges Every Bootlegger In City On Petition. – Mayor Roberts, Alderman Balment, Scott and Little Hand In Their Resignations. –

            Last Thursday evening’s special meeting of the city council called to deal with the question of having the provincial police take over the policing of the municipality, was climaxed with the resignations of Mayor Roberts and Aldermen Balment, followed Friday morning by Alderman Scott tendering his resignation and Alderman Little remaining with the council until Friday night, which permitted electing Alderman Flowers acting mayor.  The city is now in the hands of the government, when an order-in-council will be sought by the inspector of municipalities, through the attorney-general’s department, for the setting of a date for holding the new election and naming a returning officer.

            When Thursday’s meeting was called to order every councilman was in his seat and an audience estimated at one hundred, were present to hear the deliberations.

Telegrams From Municipalities.

            All municipalities now policed by provincial police were communicated with to ascertain if the system was satisfactory, this being done on motion of Alderman Scott at a previous meeting.  Telegrams were read from the following places, the wires reading as below:

                                                                                    Victoria, B.C. Feb. 3-31

F.W. Burgess, City Clerk, Cranbrook:

            Your wire second.  Do not know any reason why provincial policing should not be most satisfactory both from standpoint of efficiency and economy.

                                                                                    Inspector of Municipalities.


                                                                                    Rossland, B.C. Feb. 6-31

F.W. Burgess, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Regret delay answering your telegram.  Mayor instructs me advise you that policing of this city by Provincial Police appears quite satisfactory during past six years.

                                                                                    J.A. MacLeod, City Clerk.


                                                                                    Ladysmith, B.C. Feb. 6-31

City Clerk, Cranbrook, B.C.

            Policing of this city by provincial authorities quite satisfactory, financial and otherwise.

                                                                                    J. Mason, Mayor.



                                                                                    Chilliwack, B.C. Feb. 4-31

F.W. Burgess, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Policing by Provincial Police very satisfactory, financially and otherwise.

                                                                                    E. Manuel, Mayor.


                                                                                    Port Alberni, B.C. Feb. 3-31

            Policing of our municipality Provincial Police has exceeded our expectations financially and improved moral standard.  Would not consider returning to former system.

                                                                                    Jas. R. Motion, Mayor.


                                                                                    Courtenay, B.C. Feb. 3-31

City Cranbrook, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Policing of Courtenay by Provincial Police is eminently satisfactory in every respect.

                                                                                    H. MacIntyre, Mayor.


                                                                                    Duncan, B.C.  Feb. 3-31

F.W. Burgess, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Policing of Duncan by the Provincial is quite satisfactory financially and otherwise.

                                                                                    H.P. Provost, Mayor.


                                                                        Prince Rupert via Ashcroft  Feb. 3-31

F.W. Burgess, City Clerk, Cranbrook:

            Policing satisfactory in every way.  Would hate to return to former system.

                                                                                    C.H. Orme, Mayor.


                                                                                    Prince George, B.C.  Feb. 3-31

City Clerk, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Provincial police much more satisfactory than former system.  Financially saving approximately one-third.

                                                                                    A.M. Patterson, Mayor.


                                                                                    Nanaimo, B.C.  Feb. 3-31

F.W. Burgess, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Cost of policing city about same as formerly.  Service quite satisfactory.

                                                                                    Geo. A.B. Hall, Mayor.


                                                                                    Port Coquitlam, B.C.  Feb. 3-31

F.W. Burgess, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Provincial Police very satisfactory both economically and efficiency four years here.  Much better than municipal police.

                                                                                    John Smith, City Clerk.


                                                                                    Grand Forks, B.C.  Feb. 3-31

F.W. Burgess, Cranbrook, B.C.:

            Policing by Provincial Police entirely satisfactory to majority of citizens.

                                                                                    Mayor Henniger.


            Moved by Aldermen Collier and Flowers that resolution No. 369 (authorizing council to enter into agreement with provincial police) be rescinded.

            Speaking to above motion Alderman Scott asked that delegation and petitions pertaining to the matter, be received.  Mayor Roberts stated that this would be quite in order.

            Police Commissioner Shankland, spokesman for the petitioners, presented a petition, which he said contained the names of 334 ratepayers and citizens, and asking the council to reconsider their decision in the matter of having the municipality policed by provincial police.  He stated the petitioners were not in favor of such policing.  Commissioner Shankland stated that had they had time they could have obtained several more signatures and interpreted it as meaning that the council carry out the wishes of the property owners, or the council should resign.  The petition was then presented, containing the following names:

            We the undersigned citizens and taxpayers of the City of Cranbrook respectfully ask the mayor and aldermen of the city to reconsider their motion dispensing with the city police, as we are not in favor of being policed by the Provincial Police.

            Alec. Derby, D. Fergusson, Geo. F. Bond, J.T. Parkins, F.H. Dezall, A.C. Bowness, Fernie-Fort Steele Brewing Co. Ltd., per A.C. Bowness, George W. Reece, William Nicoll, J.G. Cummings, H.A. McKowan, W.F. Cameron, James Martin, Mrs. W.F. Cameron, Mrs. Clifford Thompson, Ella H. Clapp, E.H. McPhee, W.H. Wilson, Geo. Anton, Chas, Spence, James F. Scott, Mrs. E.T. Cooper,  W.S. Johnston, Canadian Legion B.E.S.L. Cranbrook Branch, W.S. Johnston secretary, W. Steward, Sam DeLucca, Dante Brimcivelli, A. Strange, E.M. Davies, Gregory Thomas, Carrie Thomas, Susan May Leigh, Beatrice F. Allen, W. Shepherd, Mrs. W. Shepherd, A.E. Ryder, E.S. Bailey, Mrs. A.J. Ratcliffe, J.F. Guimont, Janet McInnis, Elizabeth Haslam, Ethel Norgrove, James Norgrove, W.H. Greaves, Ethel Healey, J. Healey, Chas. S. Parker, Anna Parker, H.J. Brock, Grace Leonard, Pauline C. Taylor, Eden Turner, Mrs. Mary Macdonald, Lydia J. Clark, R.H. Moore, John Rankin MacDonald, K.V. Wilson, Wm. J. Wilson, Annie Shankland, Jennie Gammon, Ann McCallum, Phyllis Malcolm, Gasie J. Mott, Harry McDonald, Gwendoline McDonald, A. DeBuysscher, Mrs. H. McGill, Violet Gummer, G.S. Moore, J.O. Ingham, Jos. P. O’Neil, Mrs. Janet Terrace, Mrs. Jane P. Mann, Etta M. Birce, John P. Ljungquist, Regina C. Ljungquist, Mrs. H.B. Kirkland, H.E. Sainsbury, Nellie R. Owen, Margaret Davies, Mrs. Mary Flowers, Mary Cook Kerr, C.W. Pocock, Beatrice C. Pocock, Minnie E. Egan, Annie Kilby, R. W. Leonard, D. Turner, Margaret P. Brown, Walter Harold Brown, Isabella M. Macdonald, James Macdonald, Mary Helen Cox, Bella Reid, Mrs. A. Wood, M. Finlay, Clara Graham, Lewis E. Cox, Mrs. Amy Fennessey, Mrs. W.G. Barrett, C.E. Price, Agnes C. Reekie, Wm. Robson, H. Hesson, Mary Lizzie Robson, Mrs. Christine Taylor, Mrs. J. Blefare, G. Blefare, C. Zilli, Bert Matson, Felix Provenzano, P. Sacco, A. Sdecki, Lizzie Williams, Umberto Frizini, Camila  [MORE NAMES]


Mayor Vacates Seat

            His Worship Mayor Roberts rose and stated that he agreed with Commissioner Shankland’s interpretation of the petition and resigned forthwith, vacating his seat and leaving the council chamber.

Alder Balment Quits

            Alder Balment then rose and stated that he also considered the petition as a vote of non-confidence in the council and saw no other course open but to resign his seat, leaving the meeting.

            Things were beginning to happen.

            Alderman Scott rose and started to speak but was prevailed upon by Commissioner Shankland to remain whereupon he resumed his seat.

Attridge Declines Chair.

            Alderman Attridge was asked to take the chair, but declined, stating Alderman Flowers was an older councilman than he, and had something to say on the matter.  Alderman Flowers was on motion voted to the chair.

Petition Received.

            Moved by Alderman Scott and Alderman Little, that the petition from the ratepayers and citizens be received.  Carried.

Hold Up Police Order.

            Motion by Alderman Collier and Attridge, that a wire be sent to the Commissioner of Police at Victoria asking that no further action be taken in the matter of policing the municipality by provincial police until further advised.  Carried.

Condemn Police.

            Alderman Attridge stated the chief had too much time on his hands for fishing and hunting and business not connected with the police.  He charged the police were not overworked, having lots of time on their hands and were in the same position as men roaming around with nothing to do.  It was a strange thing, he said, that nearly every hotel and every bootlegger in Cranbrook was on the petition.  The chief had used $114.00 worth of gasoline during the past year and he would like to know for what purpose.

            He asked Commissioner Shankland if the police commission would consider the policing of the city with two men.  Commissioner Shankland replied that the matter would be taken under advisement and would be given consideration.  Police Commissioner Derby also stated the matter would be considered.

Aldermen Scott and Little Resign.

            Alderman Scott handed in his resignation Friday morning and Alderman Little Friday evening, when a special meeting of the council was held, appointing Alderman Flowers as acting mayor and an application was made to Mr. Baird, inspector of municipalities, to have the three remaining aldermen constitute themselves into a finance committee for the carrying on of the city’s business.

0050.0138: Change to Provincial Police

Mayor and five Aldermen resign in what they consider is a vote of nonconfidence in their contemplating changing to provincial policing. Telegrams from many cities received favoring provincial policing, but petition of local citizens against it; mostly hotel owners and bootleggers.

Medium:  Newspaper - Text
Date:  February 12, 1931
Pages:  1
Publisher:  Cranbrook Courier
Collection:  Columbia Basin Institute (0050)


mayor aldermen resignation municipal seats meeting bootlegger petition city council provincial police government telegrams resolution


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