THE DRY DOCK TARIFF COMES UNDER REVUE.
Kingston, July 13th - To the Editor:
The people of Kingston appear to be the most dissatisfied on the earth. They agitated the government for several years to build a dry-dock, and finally the dominion government undertook the work. As a result, we have one of the best docks on the chain of lakes, costing about half a million dollars. The tariff is arranged at the American rates, twenty cents per ton per ton for use of the dock after the first twenty-four hours. But one thing is in favor of the Kingston dock: vessel men have the privilege of hiring men themselves, as well as material at cost, thereby saving all commissions, a large item on such a job as the steamer Ocean. Capt. Gaskin says he can do as well in the government dock on small boats as to hire our dock, as he can use his men at $1.50 per day where, if he were in Davis' dock, it cost $2 per day.
As far as the str. Ocean is concerned she could have been docked here, at Portsmouth or at ours. We offered to dock the Ocean free of charge and would have put her in and out of the dock if the job could have been secured here. There is plenty of water at the present time to get her in. It is seen, however, there is a family relationship existing between the president of the company and the Rathbuns, and, if so, it is natural she should be repaired at Deseronto.
The fact is the government dock did more business last year than any other on Lake Ontario, but this year there is no marine work to do - in comparison with other years. It will be a poor day for Kingston when the big dock is given over to the control of a syndicate. Then the rates will not be lowered on small vessels, only on large ones, but a high commission on labor and material will be added and it will be a bonanza to some one.
It would not be hard to guess who is the prime mover in this dry-dock agitation.
DAVIS & SON.
The str. Passport, Toronto; str. Corsican, Montreal; str. Bon Voyage, Ogdensburg, arrived yesterday.
Passed Port Colborne: strs. Chancey Hurlbut, Chicago to Kingston, wheat; Acadia, Toledo to Montreal, flour.
The tug Walker brought over a couple of barges of soft coal from Oswego for the M.T. Co.'s own use this morning.
The steamyacht Vista, owned by Mr. Bronson, Ottawa, called here en route for down the river today with a party on board.
Cleared from Garden Island, July 13th: str. D.D. Calvin, barge Augustus, Oswego, light; schr. S.H. Dunn, Toledo, light.
Today Mr. Fell, foreman of Black's machine shop, Belleville, was examined for the position of boiler inspector at this port to succeed Mr. Adams, removed to Ottawa.
The str. Walker arrived today with four barges of coal from Oswego for Montreal. The Ella Murton was in the tow with 531 tons of coal for the Kingston penitentiary.
W. Power, shipbuilder, does not think that the dry-dock charges are too high. He claims, however, that a wooden dry-dock such as are used on all the upper lakes would have served the purpose just as well.
In a race from Brockville to Alexandria Bay the str. Empire State beat the Passport by about 300 yards. At Alexandria Bay they pulled out together and the Passport attempted to pass the State, but could not accomplish the task.