Los Angeles and the Insurance Companies.
The fire commissioners of Los Angeles, Cal., are against submitting to the people at this time an issue of $350,000 fire bonds, on the ground of its being unnecessary and that it will probably be defeated. At the same time the commissioners believe the demands of the rapidly growing sections of the city for better fire protection should be complied with at the earliest possible moment. An appropriation of $150,000 for this purpose the coming year from the tax receipts, they believe, will be sufficient for the present. Chief Lips concurs in this opinion. The board has adopted the following recommendations to the city council: “As near as we are able to ascertain the city pays annually to the insurance trust about $2,000,000. It would be wise on the part of the insurance companies to reduce the insurance rate, and the people would be willing to vote bonds for additional safeguards required, rv reduction of 10 per cent, in the premiums would result in an annual saving to our citizens of about $200,000, and upon such a basis the public w’ould be willing to vote a like sum or more. But as long as the insurance trust retains this unjust and burdensome grip upon the city, the temper of the people will remain indifferent to fire bonds.” The city council is asked to unite with the fire commissioners in a request to the board of underwriters to reduce at the earliest opportunity the insurance rates. The fire commissioners also recommend that the board of fire underwriters, composed of all the insurance companies doing business on the Pacific coast, be requested to establish in Los Angeles the underwriters’ patrol, to “show the people that they are willing to spend some of their tremendous earnings to aid the city fire department to save life and property.” It is set forth that no city in the United States the size of Los Angeles is without such a patrol, maintained solely at the expense of the insurance companies.