April 21, 1910

LIB
CON

John Dowsley Reid

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. J. D. REID.

Does the hon. gentleman mean to say that the government would extend the railway to the sawdust wharf?

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

There is no evidence that they would do it, but we know there was a track placed upon the municipal wharf, and either the government or the owners, or somebody else, would be inter-[DOT] ested enough to have a railway track laid

along the face of this wharf. Now Mr. O'Leary is no child, and when he sold that wharf, believing it would go to the Public Works Department, he knew there would be railway tracks upon it in a short time, and he knew that those tracks could be easily extended to his own wharf, and he knew that in that way he would get the benefit of railway accommodation which he could get in no other way, because there is no other place in Richibucto where the railway can get to the water front excepting over this very wharf.

Now, there is another thing to which I must refer, and that is the value of this wharf from Mr. O'Leary's standpoint. Mr. O'Leary says in his evidence, it is true, that $700 is all it was worth. But when the government wanted to buy a right of way for the sewer three or four years ago, he did not know what to ask for it, but finally he sold, not a piece of land 50 feet wide, as he thought it was, but merely the right to lay a sewer under this wharf extending out 200 feet, and he asked and received from the government $100. Why, Sir, that would not be one-hundredth part of the value of that wharf, because you could^ utilize it for the purpose of a sewer, and it would not affect its value in any way for wharf purposes, or even for building purposes, and yet he asked and received for this right $100 from the government. There is no doubt that the sewer was not successful, they had to get more right of way, and he wanted more money, at least, according to his own evidence he wanted another $100, and according to the evidence of Mr. Murray, he wanted $300 or $400 for extending this on a few feet further towards the water front. Yet he comes here and swears that the wharf was only worth $700 at that time. You have got to take these things into consideration if you want to judge of the honesty and sincerity of Mr. O'Learv in the statements he has made before that committee. Then again Mr. O'Leary says that a few days ago * he offered the department the whole wharf for $1,000. He not only swore'' that, but 1m produced what he says was a copy of a letter sent to the Minister of Public Works, which was not a copy at all. However, there was a letter written to the Minister of Public Works, I think in the autumn of 1908 or early in 1909, in which he says that he offered this whole wharf property to the department a few years previously for the sum of $1,000. You will find that on page 46 of the evidence. I am reading now a copy of the real letter, not the one which he produced before the committee:

Richibucto, December 7, lf08. Hon. Wm. Pugsley,

Minister of Public Works,

Ottawa.

Dear Mr. Pugsley,-Your letter received and carefully noted. With regard to the sawdust

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

wharf property referred to in same, I would say that this property was sold to me by Mr. Murray-May 23-with the understanding that Mr. Murray was acting as agent for the Department of Public Works, at $700. When the price was arranged between Mr. Murray and me, I felt that it was for the full market value. I had a short time before offered the property to the department through their Mr. Waterbury at $1,000, since when I have sold three different lots at $100 each, leaving the property then standing as if the sale were made at $700.

I do not propose reading the remainder of the letter at present, because nothing turns upon it. Now that was the statement made by Mr. O'Leary to the minister, and that is the statement which he swore to when he appeared before the committee on the first occasion. Now, Mr. Speaker, after Mr. O'Leary made this statement, an official of the department in St. John to whom this offer had been made commenced to look around to see if Mr. O'Leary's recollection was correct, and here is what we find. We find that Mr. O'Leary made this offer on the 22nd of April, 1904, to D. H. Waterbury, who was the architect of the Public Works Department in St. John. The letter was brought before the committee, it was in Mr. O'Leary's handwriting, admitted bv bim to be so, and it was not an offer to sell the whole wharf for $1,000, but it was an offer to sell less than one-third of it for $1,000, he would only sell one-third of it for $1,000, though it left the other two-thirds to him which were worth more to him than they would be to anybody else. I will read that letter, which is found on page 72:

Richibucto, N.B., April 22, 1901.

D. W. Waterbury, Esq.,

Richibucto, N.B.

Dear Sir,-With further reference to your conversation in re land opposite to public building in Richibucto, I will sell the whole lot on the eastern side of Water street, the full width of the present lot owned by the government, that is 227 feet in width and running back to the channel 625 feet for $1,000. Or I will sell the 227 feet on the street running back to a depth of 100 feet for $500.

Yours truly,

(Sgd.) R. O'LEARY.

P.S.-Or I will sell a piece 50 feet by 100 feet opposite the public building where the sewer is for $250.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I forgot to state that this sawdust wharf practically contains about 10 acres of land, and part of it has water over it at high tide.

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CON

Oswald Smith Crocket

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CROCKET.

Does not tne deed simply describe the property as containing 7-88 acres of land?

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

That may be true, and I will refer to the evidence, on page 73, of Mr. Stead, who made the survey, and prepared * the plans from the survey, and brought the plans before the committee. In that he states that the land contains

something near ten acres, as you will find in the evidence on page 73. Now, Sir, this wharf lies 725 feet or 730 feet along the river front, extending from the main street down to the river front on the one side, and on the opposite side of the main street is the post office and Dominion building. The Dominion building has a frontage on the western side of 223 feet, the sawdust wharf property has a frontage on the main street on the opposite side of 730 feet. Mr. O'Leary offered to sell to the department, by this letter, 227 feet opposite the post office building for $1,000. If you figure that out for the whole area, you will find that, in a writing which he cannot deny, he wanted over $3,000 for the whole lot. If you take his second offer and figure it out, that is the offer of a piece of 227 feet by 100 feet at $500, he wanted at the rate of $10,000, and if you take the other proposition, that is 50 feet bv 100. he wanted at the rate of $20,000 for his wharf. This is in the letter produced in evidence, Mr. O'Leary cannot change his evidence, and this is the man who says the whole thing is not worth more than $700.

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CON

Francis Ramsey Lalor

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LALOR.

Is it not a fact that he sold the property for $700?

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

Why, of course it is, and I have explained that half a dozen times. I trust my hon. friend when he interrupts me again will put a question that there is some common sense in.

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CON

Arthur Meighen

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN.

Does the hon. member (Mr. Carvell) seriously contend that the figure an owner asks from the government for a property is any fair criterion of its value?

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

I have not said so. I say that Mr. O'Leary, a good Conservative, wanted this government to pay him that for one-third of his wharf.

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LIB
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

And when Mr. O'Leary came here, forgetting that the offer was in writing, he said he told Mr. Waterbury that he could have the whole wharf for $1,000, but when the letter was produced it was shown that Mr. O'Leary's recollection was at fault and his failure of memory combined with other things showed that very little credence can be attached to anything that Mr. O'Leary said before the committee.

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CON

George Henry Bradbury

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BRADBURY.

Is your argument that if a man does not ask the government five times what a property is worth he is insane?

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

Surely the hon. gentleman does not want an answer to such an absurd question. I don't wonder that hon. gentlemen opposite squirm when this case 243i

is put before them in the proper light. But, we have not aione Mr. O'Leary's evidence as to the value of the property; we have amongst others the evidence of Mr. J. D. Irving, a gentleman who I admit is a member of the Liberal party of the county of Kent, and is not ashamed of it. Mr. Irving is a gentleman who has been so successful in business that he Is probably the largest property holder and is doing the largest business of any man in the county. But, the hon. member for York (Mr. Crocket) to show his venom cannot discuss even a business man like Mr. Irving without attempting to throw mud upon him, and to infer that he was not a man worthy of credence. Mr. Irving had nothing to do with buying this property and he received no benefit from it. I did hope that my hon. friend (Mr. Crocket) for once in his lifetime-at least once since he became a member of this House-would try to be perfectly fair and read the whole evidence jn that point, and not emasculate it. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Crocket) said Mr. Irvine was not worthy of credence, because he was doing business with the government and rented scotvs to the government at $2 a day, but the hon. gentleman did not tell the House that Mr. Irving only rented the scows to the government for 20 days and that last year he refused to let the government have these scows because a private contractor was willing to pay him more for them and to give them permanent employment as well. And so the scows were taken from the government and given to the private contractor, and Mr. Irving has been getting $2 a day for them during the whole season.

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CON

Oswald Smith Crocket

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CROCKET.

I stated that Mr. Irving had received upwards of $600 at the rate of $2 a day for a scow which he admitted was not worth $150, and that statement is true as shown by the records.

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

My recollection is that there is no such evidence as that.

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CON

Oswald Smith Crocket

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CROCKET.

I made it up from the Auditor General's Report.

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LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

Then it is not in the evidence, and furthermore it is not true. The truth about it is that Mr. Irving rented an engine for which he got $8 a day, and with that engine he furnished the engineer the fuel, the oil and did the repairs. He did all the work to the engine for some three or four years, and with the scows and all put together he has received from this government $600. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Crocket) cannot show that Mr. Irving got more than $40 in any one year for the scow which he referred to. That is another evidence that mv hon. friend (Mr. Crocket) did not deal fairly with the members of this House who were not present in the committee when he was discussing the evi-

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dence taken there. He should have quoted all the evidnce on that point as it was incumbent upon him to do as an honourable man, and not to cite emasculated portions of it. The hon. gentleman also spoke of Mr. Irving as being a contraqtor for furnishing stones to the government for some breakwater, and he alleged that Mr. Irving was getting a great big profit on it, but he did not read to the House Mr. Irving's evidence which went to show that in one year he figured out his accounts and he found he had made the enormous profit of $46, and for the last few years Mr. Irving has not and will not furnish stones to the government at the price they offered him. Then the hon. member (Mr. Crocket) told the House that Mr. Irving had property in Buctouehe extending half a mile along the water front and for which he only paid $200. That is not true. The evidence shows that he has half a mile of property along the water front and that 15 years ago he bought one and one only of these wharfs for $220, but the hon. gentleman did not state that.

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CON
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL.

The hon. gentleman did not read from the evidence the statement of Mr. Irving that that wharf was to-day worth to him $500 per annum, and that he would not sell it at any price. I am not going to take three and a half hours to make a speech as the hon. gentleman did, but I cannot discuss the question without showing the glaring inaccuracies of my hon. friend (Mr. Crocket). You could not prick his whole speech with a neddle that you will not find some inaccuracy or some omission which if stated would have shown the true state of affairs.

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April 21, 1910