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Columbia, S. C., August 8th, 1919. ORDER NO. 184.

In re Discontinuance of Service Over the Track of the American

Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation, of Beaufort, S. C., by

the Charleston & Western Carolina Railway Company. Charleston & Western Carolina Railway Company:

Upon the complaint of the president of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation, of Beaufort, S. C., the Commission conferred with the General Superintendent of the Charleston & Western Carolina Railway Company, as well as with Mr. W. S. Nelson, local counsel for the aforesaid mentioned railway company. The Commission being of the opinion that the parties at interest were at variance with each other for one cause or another to a sufficient degree that to undertake to bring about a satisfactory adjustment by correspondence would consume too much time and be too detrimental to an enterprise, and the employees thereof, that without service by railroad cannot exist, ordered a conference to be had between officials of the Charleston & Western Carolina Railway and the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation in the Commission's office at Columbia, S. C., on August 7th.

Information received at this conference goes to show the Charleston & Western Carolina Railway Company has operated the spur track of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation, at Beaufort, S. C., from its main line in the switching limits of Beaufort, S. C., for about ten months, and that service was discontinued over said spur track, such track having been built at the expense of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation, and is now owned by them, not of their own preference but because it was absolutely necessary for them to build same under existing conditions if service was to be obtained. The Commission's understanding is that the main contention of the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. for discontinuance of this service was the failure of the officials of the aforesaid mentioned American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation to sign an agreement which contained, among other things, a clause protecting the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. against liability from fire, etc., etc., which agreement was submitted by the officials of the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. to the officials of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Company. The contention of the president of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation is that certain modifications should be made in that agreement, and he admits that his company has not signed this agreement, and asks the Commission to issue an order requiring the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. to perform service on spur track of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation from the main line of the C. & W. C. Co. to the yards of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation as heretofore rendered by the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. until the 15th day of August, 1919, this time being necessary for him to call a meeting of the directors of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation and submit to them the agreement which the railway company now proposes for the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation to sign, the president of the said American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation agreeing in the presence of the Commission to sign the agreement first presented to the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. The contention of the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. is that since the drawing of the first agreement conditions have so changed that the railway company will not now accept an agreement of that kind.

The Commission has gone into this matter thoroughly and realizing what it would mean to the manufacturing and other enterprises of South Carolina if railroad companies should be allowed to discontinue service on tracks of this kind arbitrarily, and in order to give time, which in the opinion of the Commission is necessary and would be granted by any court, for the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation to communicate with its officers relative to signing of the last agreement proposed and presented by the C. & W. C. Ry. Co., which agreement the Commission understands had never been presented to the American Shipbuilding and Dock Company by the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. before conference hereinabove referred to on the 7th inst.; and realizing further that a discontinuance of service such as is proposed by the C. & W. C. Ry. Co. would be detrimental not only to the American Shipbuilding and Dock Company but to the employees of said company, who while interested are innocent parties to this controversy,

IT IS ORDERED, That from this date until twelve o'clock P. M. on the 15th day of August, 1919, the Charleston & Western Carolina Railway Company be and is hereby required to perform such switching service over the spur track of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation, at Beaufort, S. C., as it has heretofore been performing, and such service as will comply with Commission's Rule No. 53; and at the expiration of the time limit set herein, or before, if possible, officials of the Charleston & Western Carolina Railway Company and of the American Shipbuilding and Dock Corporation shall notify the Commission whether or not they have been able to agree upon a satisfactory adjustment of apparent differences. This is a peremptory order and is effective immediately.

FRANK W. SHEALY, Chairman.

H. H. ARNOLD, Commissioner. J. P. DARBY, Secretary.

(Seal)

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In re Increase in Rates at the Abbeville Exchange, Abbeville,

South Carolina. As per appointment, and after due notice having been given through the columns of The Press and Banner, Abbeville, S. C., that a meeting would be held by the Railroad Commission of South Carolina in the City of Abbeville, S. C., on Tuesday, September the 2d, 1919; on that day the Commission appeared and held a hearing on the petition of the Abbeville Telephone Company praying for an increase in rates for telephone service rendered by the Abbeville Exchange.

They set out that their present rate was $2.50 per month for business phones, and $2.00 per month for residence phones. They asked for an increase as follows: Special business phones, $3.00 per month; Duplex business phones, $2.50 per month; Special residence phones, $2.00 per month; Duplex residence phones, $2.00 per month.

At the meeting which was given quite an amount of prominence through the papers, and otherwise, only the president of the Telephone Company and one citizen appeared. However, quite a number of citizens spoke to the Commission before time for the meeting on the morning of the 2d inst., and in each instance requested that the increase be granted as per schedule above set out. After going into the matter thoroughly and investigating the revenues of this company for its service, and the further consideration that the present rate has been effective for

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more than twelve years, and in addition to the increase in salaries necessarily paid to employees, due to conditions existing at this time, as well as the increased cost of all materials entering into the construction and maintenance of telephone systems, and the city council in regular session on the 11th day of July, 1919, having approved the increase in rates as above set out, the Commission reached the conclusion that in order for the aforesaid Telephone Company to furnish such service as is demanded, that the increase in rates was just and equitable; therefore,

IT IS ORDERED, That on and after October 1, 1919, The Abbeville Telephone Company be allowed, and the same is hereby authorized to charge for service rendered to its subscribers inside the city limits of Abbeville, S. C., the following rates:

For Special business phones, $3.00 per month.
For Duplex business phones, $2.50 per month.
For Special residence phones, $2.00 per month. .
For Duplex residence phones, $1.50 per month.

AND IT IS SO ORDERED. This order to remain in effect until the further order of this Commission.

FRANK W. SHEALY, Chairman.
JAMES CANSLER, Commissioner.

H. H. ARNOLD, Commissioner.
J. P. DARBY, Secretary.

(Seal)

Columbia, S. C., September 25th, 1919.

ORDER NO. 186.

In re Telephone Rates of the Independent Telephone Company

of Ninety Six, Ninety Six, South Carolina. On the petition of the Independent Telephone Company of Ninety Six, South Carolina, of date February 28, 1919, in which they ask for an increase in rates for service rendered through their Ninety Six exchange, and after considerable correspondence relative to the same, the Commission ordered a hearing to be held at Ninety Six, S. C., on September 3, 1919, of which due notice was given for four weeks through the columns of the Greenwood Index as prescribed by law.

At this meeting, the above mentioned Telephone Company was represented by W. B. Jeter, Secretary and Treasurer, and as many as twenty-five representative citizens and subscribers of this exchange were present. After considerable testimony was produced and a financial statement rendered by the Secretary and Treasurer, which statement showed conclusively to all present that the service was being rendered at a loss; and it was agreed by the subscribers present that it was necessary that the aforementioned Telephone Company be granted an increase in rates if they were to be able to furnish service such as was demanded.

After going into this matter thoroughly, and taking into consideration the increase in wages necessary to obtain efficient ernployees, as well as the greatly increased prices now paid for material entering into the construction and necessary for the maintenance of telephone lines and equipment, the Commission feel that to be just to all parties concerned, an increase in rates is necessary.

IT IS, THEREFORE, ORDERED, That on and after October 1, 1919, The Independent Telephone Company of Ninety-Six, South Carolina, be allowed, and the same is hereby authorized, to charge for service rendered its subscribers within the city limits of Ninety Six, S. C., the following rates:

For Special business phones, $3.00 per month.
For Duplex business phones, $2.50 per month.
For Special residence phones, $2.00 per month.
For Duplex residence phones, $1.50 per month.

And that as much as two hours service be given to the subscribers by the above mentioned Telephone Company from 8:30 to 10:30 in the forenoon, and from 3 to 5 o'clock in the afternoon on Sundays; and a reasonable night-time service on every night except Sunday night.

This order to remain in effect until the further order of this Commission. And it is so ordered.

FRANK W. SHEALY, Chairman.

H. H. ARNOLD, Commissioner. J. P. DARBY, Secretary.

(Seal)

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