March 27, 1897.
Record and Guide
Dented 10 RfA,LESTWI.BuiLDIfJG ^RGl^ITECrTURE,HGUSEtfOmDEGtD(UKlt,
PAICC, PER YEAR, IN ADVANCE, SIX DOLLARS.
Published eveiy Saturday,
TBLEPHONB, .--... COETLAHDT 1370
Communloatlona ahould be addreseed to
C. W. SWEET, 14-16 VeseylStreet.
J T, LINDSEY. Business Manager.
_•'Entered at ths Post-office al New York, !f. Y., an seeondrClasB mailer."
MARCH 27, 1897:
THE pioinptD^ss with wluch, so n)auy..w,estemrailroad.com-
■ paaies withdrew fi-om. their- freight ,3,BSOciationS:,- on the
annouiicement of the Federal Supreme■Court.decision that such
associationB were illefial, sugg-eet-that^the-managers-of-these
compaiiies were glad of so good an excuse forwitbdrawingand
not BOTjyto see producedthe inevii able effect ui'OnstockTnarliet
quotations.- It isthi,s baste'to-throw over agreements, as much
as the adverse decision itself, that'has created disquiet and
anxiety iu the minds of security hoideVs andcaused" many o-f
fhem to throw over their stocks'. There are signs now that the
situation is beiug more thoughtfully regarded aud, barring
other unpleasant surprises, this ought to create a reaction. It
should be borne in mind that inqre money was made by rail¬
roads before the days ot pools and agreements thau. has been
madoby tiiem since, aud that, even if the evil results of the
decision so confidently predicted do come, it will notbefoia
long time. Kate-cutting was never prevalent in prosperous
times when plenty of freight was offering, consequently the
anticipations of rate demoralization as a resnli of tbe decision
are only fully justitied on tbe theory that business is going to
be worse iu the near future iustead of better as most good
.iudgfs believe. It is understood too, that a bill has already
been preparetl for submission to Congress to legalize pooling.
Some such arraugcmeut prevails iu Great Britan under the
authority of the Board of Trade, to whom shippers can appeal
against burdeusouie or discriminating charges. There is uo
just reaaou why wholesome regulations, fair alike to shippers and
carriers, should not bave the sanction of law in this, country
and be operated by the Inter-State Commerce Commission.
Probably there will be no difficulty in passing such a measure
through the House, just as there is apparently no unlikelihood
that the Dingley Tariff bill will fail of a ma.iority there, but there
is absolutely co way of speaking for the Senate, because the
Kepiiblicans having uo certain control of that body, it lies with
the Populistic minority to turn the scale one wny or another.
The really hard time forany measure looking to the remedy of
any evil iu oui' commercial situation will come only whenit
reaches the Senate.
LAST weekwe referred to the fact that ofBciai re turns showed
a flourishing condition of business to exist in Great
Britain, aud we now have at hand summaries of the annual
statements of the Bank of Frauce and theluijierial Bank of
Germany, both of which referto the profitabledemand for
money to meet the wants of active tiade. These things only
confirm what we have pointed out often before', that under sen¬
sible commercial laws and" aided by currency "systems of un-
qiiestiouable soundness, Europe has enjoyed a^couple pE years
of prosperity. There has been no reckless,speculation to,mar
this condition. ') be gold mining craze was the lust movement
to capture the creduloiis an4l that even has been long spent,
while readjustment of quotations for the shares affected to real
value is going on at a steady rate. For the moment Europeau
trade takes ou no expansion because of the caution which the
ve-opeuing of the Turkish question creates, but it must now be
more than ever apparent that this is not going to be the ( ccasion
of .war tbis time. Holders of Grecian bonds are asking one
another where Greece finds the meaus to carry on its military
operations iu Crete and Thessaly while declaring to them that
it has no money to pay the interest on its bonds. It is even said
thatwhile pleading poverty as an excuse for not paying houor^
abledebts, chivalrous Christian Greece has been accumulatiag
a war-chest and—which will be a terrible blow to its Iriends if
it proves to be true—cooking its accounts in order to hide its
aceumulations. If we are to have the Reinhart system of
accounting extended to national finances, whatever will become
of the little coniideoce the poor investor has left. However.
"we^Uhope this story against Greece is uot true, even though
^t^H ^d }yy oue of its friends to illustrate the prudeuc^ ^^
patriotism of its government. As to the status of the Greco-
Cretan situation, what trifling information, excluding of course
"special correspondence," we are allowed to receive all goes to
show that the detprmiualiou of tbe Great Powers To tind an
houorable but peaceful solution of the difticulties it creates is as
firm as ,ever. Such an outcome is probably more, devoutly
wished for by the responsible rulers of Greece, whatever may be
the opinions of its people, than by anyone else.
Real Estate Taxation in Paris, '■
THB system of assessment at present in force in France '
dates from.tbe year 1821, and Is based on a land survey
of the whole country, which was made in the early years of the
century. No complete revision has ever been made since then,
but a law exists authorizing any township to proceed to a new
survey thnty .years, after the last one. Of course, a vast num¬
ber of changes have taken place during the century, owing to
the splitting-up of properties, the planting of waste lands, and
the construction of houses, and it is, therefore, not astonishing
that the majority of taxpayers should be anxious to see th^
Register of Lands brought up to date. The taxable value of
house g.roperty.. stands specially-in need of , revision. Cases
could be cited of houses which are taxed on the basis of, ;Bay,
$500, and.whicii-produce a revenue of thrice that figure; that Is
to say,- they-.are taxed to.:day at the same rate- as in 1821,
whereas.houses built since-then are taxed-according to their
actual value rental. On the other hand, many properties which
have.decreased in value-still- pay taxes-on the basis of their for¬
mer revenue. ...
In 1891, the latest year for which statistics are available,
Prance contained 9,000.000* houses. The city of Paris contained
85.000 houses, and there were 4,000* vacant parcels.
Real estate iu Paris- is subject to two national taxes (like the
rest of France), viz: The Real Estate Tax and the Door and
Window Tax; and one municipal tax, called the Cleaning.and
The Real Estate Tax (Impot Foncier).
The produce or yield of this tax Is determined in advance
each year in the national budget. The share thereof claimed
by the State is practically always the same and is never in¬
creased except iu great emergencies, such as the war of 1870.
The share of the tax to be raised by each of the different coun¬
ties is fixed by the Chambers, the county fixes the share of each
disti-ict, the district does tbe same for each township compos¬
ing it, aud finally the township establishes the amount to be paid
bv each taxpayer. Any increase made in the assessment is al¬
ways due to the County Councils, which have power to increase
the tax for the puniose of meeting local expenditure.
In order to illustrate how the produce of the Real Estate Tax
is divided,.we may mention, taking the County of Indre-et-
Loiue and the town of Tours as .in example, that about 49% ac¬
crues to the State, 34% to the County and 17% to Tours.
The Real Estate Tax is based, in regard to improved prop¬
erty, on the rental value.
Improved property is not taxed as such until the third year
after completion, and only the full tax collected if occupied.
" Property which undergoes extensive alterations is taxed as
If a piece of improved property has remained untenanted, a
-certain portion of the tax is remittted^-5 of tax. remitted If
vacant. ;,."■■- - -
Land in-cities Is taxed-as improved property If it is used for
business purposes. If it is not used. It is only liable to the
Cleaning and Sweeping Tax, described hereinafter.
The tas is payable by the owner of the property.
The tax, as regards improved property, amounts to about
5Vi%* of the letting value, less one-fourth in the case of houses
and° one-third in the case of factories, for depreciation and cost
of maintenance and repairs.
The valuations, as a rule, are only revised once in every ten
Door and "Window Tax.
This tax is levied on every door and window opening on to the
exterior, without regard to their form or dimensions.
For Parts, the tax consists of a fixed charge for each door and
window, as follows:
Carrlase doorway. ....................^J *"■«.« per y«r.
Wdowa (oveW .tor^i::".:'.".-".".-••"."• 0.70(ranc.-U ctB.per r«r.
and a small proportional charge, based on tbe net revenue of
the bouse the two charges together forming one single tax.
For the rest of France the Door and Window Tax consists
only of a fixed charge, based on the number and kind of tbe
openings and the popylatlo^ pf ^ Place. The larger the popo*