Free Water for Fort Worth Industries.
The proposition of the authorities of Fort Worth, Tex., to furnish free water to all boilers in industrial establishments with a view to encourage manufacturing is rather novel and certainly of a socialistic order. The proposition, which already has the approval of Commissioner Powell, of the waterworks department, and Mayor Davis, and is practically sure of the sanction of the other members of the board, will become effective next summer when the big collecting reservoir is to be completed and will apply to all industries but public service corporations. These the Mayor recommends he excluded because they already have water supplies of their own and because the free water would not result in any reduced rate of charges to the people. Mayor Davis in explanation of the scheme says: “This may seem a strange recommendation and an unwarranted burden on the waterworks department, but 1 would suggest that we relieve that department by giving it credit of actual cost for all the water furnished to tliese boilers, payment to he provided from some other fund available. I believe that factories would then locate within the city limits, and that many of them would come and look over the situation here and the result would be that at least quite a few new industries would locate within our city, which, in turn, would derive many benefits from these new industries, a market would be created for many of our products, and a general stimulating of the revival in business circles, that is already in evidence in our city, would result.” No doubt every little helps toward the prosperity of municipalities, and this offer of free water for turning the lathes of the factories of Fort Worth may bring about such wonderful industrial results that other cities as fortunate as that hustling town in the matter of water supply will soon follow suit and hang out their free water banners so that prospective wandering mechanics may see them and come into the folds. But is the idea a good one as educating people how to conserve so important a commodity as public water supplies?