Publication: Colorado Springs Gazette
Colorado Springs, CO, United States
COUNCIL ISSUES WARRANT IN
FULL FOR $3,727.23.
DIFFICULTY FINALLY CLOSED
DETAILS OF ARBITRATORS
FLOY'S BILL COMES TO $2,307
Arbitrators Held Company Responsible
for Lights Being Below the
Standard, but Say City Should
Have Protested Sooner on
All differences between the city of Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Hydro-Electric company, which have been in controversy for nearly one year, have finally been settled. A warrant for the amount due the Hydro company for unpaid bills from June 1, 1906, to February 1, 1907, less the award given the city by the arbitrators was last night ordered drawn by the city council.
The company's bills against the city for the period aggregated $10,850.90. The arbitrators awarded the city $7,123.67. The balance amounting to $3,727.23 will be paid in a warrant to the order of the company.
City attorney W. C. Robinson submitted the formal report of the arbitrators at an adjourned meeting of the council last night. The award was briefly outlined in The Gazette the morning after it was agreed on by the board at its meeting in New York, but the full report goes into exhaustive details of the entire matter.
Disposes of Dispute.
The following resolution by Alderman Seldomridge, passed by the council, finally disposes of the long standing Hydro tangle.
"Resolved. That a warrant be drawn for $3,727.23 in favor of the Pikes Peak Hydro-Electric company in payment of the award signed March 30, 1907, by Henry Floy, E. I. Elliot and Prof. L. G. Carpenter, arbitrators in the matter of the arbitration between the city of Colorado Springs and the Pikes Peak Hydro-Electric company."
Although the arbitrators awarded the city $7,123.67, the resolution speaks of the warrant as "in payment of the award." This is because the award of the board, when applied to the city's unpaid bills of $10,850.90, leaves a balance of $3,727.23 against the city.
Henry Floy's Bill.
The bill of Henry Floy, the arbitrator selected by the city, was received yesterday and discussed by the council. It amounts to $2,307.01 and includes $1,700 for 17 days sitting at $100 per day, four days en route to and from this city at $50 per day and all expenses. A total of $700 on account has been paid Mr. Floy, leaving a balance of $1,607.01.
The aldermen are reluctant to pay this bill, but there seems no alternative, since it was agreed to pay Mr. Floy $100 per day for actual sittings, and $50 per day while traveling, in addition to expenses. When this arrangement was made it was thought that the hearing would occupy but two or three days.
Professor Carpenter's bill has not been received. His per diem fee is only $50, do that his demand will be at least $850 less than that of Mr. Floy. In addition, the Hydro company must bear half the amount of Professor Carpenter's bill, and pay all bills submitted by Mr. Elliot.
The conclusions of the arbitrators are as follows:
"The monetary claims made by the city were: Claim for a refund on bills paid prior to June 1, 1906, for a reduction of bills for service rendered from June 1, 1906 to February 1, 1907."
"After careful consideration of all facts presented in evidence, the arbitrators make, in accordance with the agreement of arbitration, and under authority of the statutes of the state of Colorado the following award:"
"First, That the Pike's Peak Hydro-Electric company shall refund to the city of Colorado Springs the sum of $4,612.12. Interest on these overcharges, computed at 8 per cent to April 1, 1907, amounting to $519.34, is awarded the city in accordance with the stipulations of the agreement of arbitration.
"Second, That the bills of the Pike's Peak Hydro-Electric company against the city of Colorado Springs for service rendered from June 1, 1906 to February 1, 1907, shall be reduced by the amount of $2,056.43. Interest on the bills thus corrected, due the company, computed at 8 per cent to April 1, 1907, is $307.22, which amount is awarded the Pikes Peak Hydro-Electric company, in accordance with the stipulations of the agreement of arbitration.
"Third, That in accordance with the statutes of Colorado, the arbitrators declare that the statutory fee of $6 per day amounts to $243, which amount is awarded to the city of Colorado Springs, to be paid by the Pike's Peak Hydro-Electric company."
The arbitrators then deduct the interest due the company from that due the city, showing an excess of $212.12 in interest due the city. To this is added the arbitrator's statutory fee of $243, the refund of $4,612.12 paid on bills prior to June 1, 1906, and the deletion of $2,656.47 from the unpaid bills owing to the company for the period from June 1, 1906 to February 1, 1907. The total is $7,123.67, the amount of the award."
This amount is deducted by the arbitrators from the total of $10,850.90 claimed by the Hydro company for service since last June. The remainder of $3,727.23 is declared to be the "difference due the company to balance accounts to February 1, 1907, from the city." This is the amount of the warrant drawn by the city council.
An interesting feature of the award is the statement that the arbitrators, in reaching their decision, estimated "that 20 per cent, in the present case, is a fair estimate in dollars and cents, of the deficiency of the lights furnished by the company as compared with arc lights of standard 2,000 candlepower, both types considered as operating under normal conditions." This decision was reached on one of five subquestions into which the arbitrators divided the entire subject.
The other four, which are taken up and answered are as follows:
(1) "Does the phrase 'arc lights of standard 2,000 candle power' each mean an arc lamp giving 2,000 actual candle power, or if not, what was the generally accepted meaning at the time?" The conclusions of the board are that there was no arc lamp of 2,000 candle power in use at the date of the granting of the Jackson franchise (September 8, 1898). The 9.6 direct current, open arc series, consuming 450 watts at the arc, is designated by the arbitrators as the generally accepted at the time of the granting of the franchise as the "2,000 candle power lamp."
(2) "Do the arc lights under which the company has furnished, when operated under normal conditions, come within the meaning of the phrase 'arc lights of standard 2,000 candle power?'" In answer to this the arbitrators find that "the uncontradicted testimony of the expert witnessess was to the effect that the arc lights furnished by the company did not come within the meaning of the phrase."
(3) "This question relates to whether the company's arc light service was such as might reasonably be expected, and, if not, what the overcharge was, expressed in dollars and cents, as a result of defective service. The board finds "that the company; according to it's own tables, operated the lamps both above and below normal the normal wattage, and finds the discrepancy to be 6 1-4 per cent below the normal. This figure was therefore used as a correction constant in reducing the station wattage.
(4) '"Was the city estopped from claiming any refund?" This is the point raised by Attorney Karl Schuyler the Hydro company, on the last day of the hearing in this city. He claimed that the city, having paid the Hydro bills and accepted the light service prior to June 1, 1906, was estopped from further action. The arbitrators held on this point that although there was no intention on the part of either party to evade the obligations of the contract, "the good intentions of the company could not, however could not however, be held as justification for any actual deficiency in service, which has been shown to exist."
"On the other hand," the award goes on to say, "the fact can not be overlooked that the city should have been advised in regard to a matter of such importance before accepting the service furnished by the company, or at least before having allowed it to continue for so long a time without protest. For these reasons the arbitrators consider that the responsibility is divided between the company and the city for a period to June 1, 1906, and therefore conclude that the reduction on account of overcharge for this period should be figured on a basis of 10 per cent in place of the 20 per cent taken after June 1, 1906."
|Date completed:||October 13, 2007 by: Bob Stahr;|