Trouble in Chicago.
The Chicago situation as regards finances is somewhat serious, and fire underwriters will need to be alive to the possibilities of peril to their interests. According to the Chicago Tribune, the City Council has no money, and can have none applicable to any of the purposes of municipal departments for the year 1878. All the revenue, excepting that collected from licenses and fines, amounting to less than $400,000, which may be collected during 1878, will be from taxes levied for the support of the government in 1877, and will be due and appplicable to unpaid appropriations of that year exclusively. Of course trouble impends. As to the Fire Department, which now will become an “ Unpaid Fire Department,” the Tribune says : “ The Firemen cannot be expected to serve the city for a year and a half without any pay, and that department must be maintained, if at all, by private contributions. The disbandment of the Fire Department will, of course, lead to the withdrawal of all insurance, a condition of affairs menacing the safety of the city, and of great loss to the insurance companies. An arrangement, growing out of the imperious necessity can be, and we assume will be, made by which the insurance CQmpanies, through an additional and special rate on all polices may be able, with the aid of individuals, to maintain an efficient Fire Department during the disability of the city.” Now let our fire underwriters decide quickly what they are going to do about it.