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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 29

Case for Opinion

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Case for Opinion.

Town Clerk's Office, Dunedin, Street Levels.

Gentlemen,—Be good enough to advise as to the bearing of the Sections 184 to 194 "Municipal Corporation Act 1876," as concerns this Corporation.

Several questions occur upon which your opinion is desired.

1st. As to Section 186:—Can we alter the level of any Street in the City which may have been already formed and metalled, or, indeed, only formed, otherwise than by "Special Order;" and if so altered, will the Council be liable or not to pay compensation for the actual damage caused by such alterations?

2nd. Section 190:—We have not yet made this map. Are we bound to make it within any specified time, or docs the Council incur any responsibility in deferring its completion?

3rd. Section 190:—Can we exclude from the map such streets (being already formed and metalled, or being formed only) as Council may consider ought to have further alterations effected in the levels thereof prior to being placed on the map?

4th. Section 191:—All buildings are to be erected having regard to the map alluded to in Section 190. No map having been prepared, can anyone build to such level as he finds to any formed street, and hold the Council liable for any departure subsequently made by the Corporation from such level?

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5th. Section 192:—London street has been in the past formed and metalled. If it is desired to alter the level can Council in this case proceed to do so under this Section and Sub-sections, without being liable to pay compensation for any actual damage sustained by such alteration? or, if an alteration in level cannot be effected under this Section, how can it be effected, without liability for compensation?

6th. Section 192:—Does this Section when taken with other Sections, preclude our altering the level of any street, already partially or wholly formed, except upon paying such compensation as is mentioned in Section 194?

7th. Section 193:—As I have already stated, we have not yet made the map herein referred to.

As respects Dunedin, until the map is made can the whole of the streets of the City be regarded as new streets, and be dealt with accordingly, in terms of this Section?

In the case of Dunedin, what streets do you regard as new ones?

8th. Section 194:—In view of this Section and seeing that the map as per Section 190 has not been made, will Council be liable to pay compensation, as per Section 194, for damage sustained through the alteration in levels of any streets in the City, whether such streets may have been previously formed or left unformed?

I have the honor to be,


Your obedient servant,

J. M. Massey,

Town Clerk.

To Messrs. Smith, Anderson & Co., City Solicitors.

Memo.—It was ultimately decided to obtain the opinions of different Barristers as to the several questions, &c. The opinions of Counsel are hereto appended in a classified shape.