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Resolved, 1. That the Savings Banks Associations of the State of New York through its executive committee, declares its opposition to either Goverment ownership or Government control and operation of the railroads for a period beyond that necessary for the enactment of legislation by the Congress insuring to the great interests represented by this association protection for the investment of millions of dollars of their depositors' money in the securities of the railroads of the country.
2. We realize that such legislation must protect alike the shipping interests of the country, the public, the employees, and the owners; and we declare that no plan for the return of the railroads can be successful which has not due regard for the various interests concerned.
3. We are opposed to the upheaval either of credit or of business through attempting to reassemble the billions of dollars of existing railroad securities into the securities of larger railroad companies with the many legal complications and practical difficulties incident thereto in addition to the time necessary for the valuation of railroad properties in bringing about such enforced consolidation-the basis of such procedure.
4. We do not believe that the Interstate Commerce Commission or any governmental regulatory body can or will deal successfully with this subject unless specific directions, contained in an act of Congress shall prescribe a definite rule for rate making, specifying the percentage return on the invest. ment in the railroads, and with provision made for such additional return to the owners as shall preserve incentive.
5. We, therefore, after mature deliberation, recommend to the Congress the passage of an act embodying the plan now before the Congress proposed by the National Association of Owners of Railroad Securities--the Warfield plan-which gives the necessary protection to the various interests concerned, and which among other fundamentals, all of which we approve, provides for a percentage return of not less than 6 per cent on the aggregate investment in the railroads in each of the territories as now laid out by the Interstate Commerce Commission and known as the three classification territories of the country : And be is further
Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be forwarded to the Members of the United States Senate and House of Representatives from New York State; also to other Members of the Senate and Congress and in such directions as may bring about the action we believe essential to the protection of these great interests we represent, and of the general public.
PRINCIPLES ADOPTED BY THE TRAFFIC CLUB OF NEW YORK.
New YORK, July 18, 1919. Hon. JOHN J. Esch, Chairman Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
Washington, D. C. My DEAR Sir: The Traffic Club of New York embraces more than 1,200 members, who consist of the users and the employees of the transportation systems of the country.
The fundamental principles which have been adopted by the club with reference to the transportation problem may be briefly summarized as follows:
1. That Government ownership or any extension of Government management or operation would be prejudicial to the public interest.
2. That remedial legislation should be enacted during the extra session of Congress, which has now convened, in order that the return of the properties to private management may be expedited, and that such legislation should provide a uniform system of regulation in essential matters, safeguard the public interest, insure adequate revenue to provide for equitable treatment of all questions affecting wages and working conditions of employees, and attract sufficient
capital to maintain and develop transportation facilities which shall meet the necessities of the country.
3. That reasonable, responsible, and adequate governmental regulation be advocated, but that such regulation should provide for the encouragement, protection, and development of the railroads.
4. That private initiative, enterprise, and responsibility in the creation, extension, improvement, and operation of the railroads should, as a matter of national policy, be fostered and preserved.
A committee of 12, of which the undersigned is chairman, was appointed by order of the board of governors, with instructions to give consideration to the question of railroad legislation and authority to present its views to the Members of Congress and congressional committees.
In pursuance of such instructions and authority, the committee has carefully examined the bill introduced by you in the House of Representatives on June 2, 1919, known as H. R. 4378, entitled “A bill to further amend an act entitled 'An act to regulate commerce, approved February 4, 1887, as amended, and for other purposes," and respectfully presents its views as follows:
Approaching its consideration upon the basis of the principles which have been adopted and enunciated, the committee indorses those provisions of the bill which are designed to coordinate through the Interstate Commerce Commission the regulation of all rates, rules, and practices and to empower a governmental agency to require the unified use of transportation facilities when necessary to cope with a shortage of equipment, congestion of traffic, or other emergency; but is of the opinion that some of the extensions of governmental authority are not calculated to foster and preserve private initiative, enterprise, and responsibility in the creation, extension, improvement, and operation of the railroads, as illustrated by the unlimited authority which it delegates to prescribe divisoins between carriers; the power which it contemplates to require a common carrier to extend its line or lines; the unlimited authority to compel the joint use of freight terminals; the substitution of an indefinite period of time for which the commission may order rates to continue in force in lieu of the period of not exceeding two years which is now provided by the law; the prohibition against any person holding the position of officer or director of more than one carrier (even though connecting carriers which are embraced in one system of transportation); and similar additions to the statute.
It is our firm conviction that only such extensions of the authority of the commission should be made as may be essential for the protection of the public and the carriers and their employees, and that the enterprise and initiative which are responsible for the development and efficient operation of our transportation systems should not be handicapped by any unnecessary interference by governmental agencies.
On the other hand the committee believes that the measure should be amplified and strengthened in the following directions:
(a) By adding to section 5 a provision authorizing the commisson to permit the carriers to agree upon common rates, classifications, and practices, and upon the adjustment of train schedules to promote economy in operation, when approved by the Interstate Commerce Commission
(6) By so amending section 13 as to authorize and require the commission to examine the relation existing between the State and interstate rates, rules, or practices, upon the petition of a shipper, a public utility commission, a carrier, or any other interested party, in order that the correction of inequalities between State and interstate rates and the removal of undue burdens upon either State or interstate traffic may be facilitated and insured.
(c) By supplementing section 14 to provide that rates shall afford the carriers adequate revenue to furnish safe and sufficient service, protect their investment, and attract new capital necessary in the public interest.
(d) By adding a provision to stabilize both State and interstate rates in effect at the end of Federal control by declaring them the lawful rates until changed by action thereafter taken according to law.
(e) To provide against the interruption of the transportation service and the public calamity which would result from the cutting off of food supplies and paralysis of the arteries of commerce, by requiring that all demands of employees covering wages and conditions of service which can not be adjusted between railroad managements and their employees shall be submitted to a governmental tribunal upon which the Interstate Commerce Commission shall be represented
The committee commends the absence from this measure of any amendment of the long-and-short haul provision of the act, and desires to emphasize the importance of continuing the discretionary power whch is vested in the Interstate Commerce Commission by the existing statute. Very respectfully,
CHARLES S. KEENE. Chairman
RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE TRAFFIC CLUB OF CLEVELAND.
CLEVELAND, July 28, 1919. Hon. John J. Esch, Chairman Interstate Commerce Committee,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. HONORABLE SIR: The Traffic Club of Cleveland, at special meeting held in the Hollenden Hotel, Cleveland, Ohio, on July 21, 1919. considered the bills pending before the Congress, relating to the railroad question, and adopted resolutions'making certain recommends tions in connection with the so-called Esch-Pomerene and Poindexter bills.
By order of the club, I am inclosing copy of the resolutions to the members of the Interstate Commerce Committees of the House and Senate, also to Members of Congress from Ohio. I was further directed to say to them that the Traffic Club of Cleveland has on its rolls members who have given the matter deep thought; men who have for years specialized in traffic matters and relations between shippers and the carriers. Therefore, the club feels its recommen
dations should not be lightly passed over, but given very careful consideration.
It is our sincere wish that this action will assist in bringing about the defeat of the Poindexter bill, and in having your bill enacted.
Thanking you for an expression as to your views on the modifications suggested, and probabilities of early action on the part of the Congress, I am, Very truly, yours,
F. A. GIDEON, Secretary.
The resolutions referred to are as follows: At a special meeting of the Traffic Club of Cleveland held in the Hollenden Hotel the following resolutions were adopted :
Resolved, That the Traffic Club of Cleveland, after having made a study of the various bills now pending in Congress relating to the railroads, indorse the principles of the so-called Esch-Pomerene bill. However, recommendations are made that the words “and the cost of capital " be added after the words “ operating costs ” in line 15, page 23, of the above-mentioned bill, making the paragraph, in which these words appear, read as follows:
“The commission, in reaching its conclusions as to the justness and reasonableness of any rate, fare, charge, classification, regulations, or practice, shall take into consideration the cost of labor and other operating costs, and the cost of capital, in so far as they become material in any case under investigation.”
Resolved, That legislation be enacted placing the arbitration and settlement of disputes, between the railroad managements and their employees, over wages and conditions of service under the jurisdiction of the Interstate Commerce Commission.
Resolved, That the Traffic Club of Cleveland place itself on record as being opposed to the so-called Poindexter “long-and-short-haul ” bill.
Further resolved, That the secretary of this club be instructed, and he is hereby authorized to inform the various other traffic clubs of the United States regarding the action taken by the Traffic Club of Cleveland, and that the Traffic Club of Cleveland is prepared to cooperate with them to the fullest extent.
Further resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be sent to the members of the Interstate Commerce Committees of the United States Senate and House of Representatives; to the United States Senators for the State of Ohio; and the Representatives of the State of Ohio in Congress assembled.
RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE AMERICAN GEAR MANUFACTUR
PHILADELPHIA, August 16, 1919. Whereas the proposition is before Congress to nationalize the railroads of the
country, which is stated to be the first step in the nationalization of industry, now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the American Gear Manufacturers Association declares itself emphatically and unqualifiedly opposed to Government ownership or Government operation of railroads as set forth in the plan of the railroad brotherhoods, which, in our estimation is the most serious menace to the welfare of the Nation of any legislation presented to Congress since we became a Republic; and also
Resolved, That we are unalterably opposed to the continuation of Government operation with all its inefficiency, poor service, and high costs of transportation and that we are in favor of an immediate return of the railroads to their owners; and
Resolved, That we are utterly and forever opposed to the nationalization of industry, since this will result in ruin to the industries, the workers, and the Nation.
RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE ALLEGANY TRADES COUNCIL OF
ALLEGANY COUNTY, MD.
CUMBERLAND, MD., August 19, 1919. The Hon. Congressman Sims:
DEAR SIR: Inclosed please find a copy of the resolution passed by the last regular meeting of the Allegany Trades Council of this city, August 12, 1919.
John V. FISHER, Secretary,
The resolution referred to is as follows: Whereas there is now pending before the Congress of the United States House bill No. 8157, known as the Sims bill; and Whereas this bill proposes to solve the railroad problem of the United States
by the following fair and equitable methods: The purchase of all the railroads in the United States at a price to be determined by the courts, paying to the investors in the securities of said roads every honest dollar invested therein;
and Whereas the bill further provides for the future problem of said roads by a na
tional operating company composed of representatives of the public, of the managing officials, and of labor; and Whereas such an arrangement will undoubtedly result in reasonable rates to the
public, reducing as economies are effected, and assures fair treatment of labor: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Allegany Trades Council, That we unqualifiedly urge the passage and enactment of this bill, and call upon all friends of labor in the ('ongress of the United States to vote for it, and urge upon all labor unions and other civic associations to join us in agitating for its passage; and, in order to organize and make effective our support we further urge all union bodies an individuals associated with the said Allegany Trades Councl to cooperate in the said movement and to join in the organization of the Plumb Plan League, to spread broadcast its merits to the general public.
RESOUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE ELK COUNTY MANUFACTURERS
RIDGWAY, Pa., August 19, 1919. CHAIRMAN HOUSE COMMITTEE ON INTERSTATE COMMERCE,
House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. DEAR SIR: Inclosed you will please find a copy of resolutions passed by the board of governors of the Elk County Manufacturers' Association at a meeting held August 14, 1919.
It will be very greatly appreciated if these resolutions may receive your consideration. Very truly, yours,
ELK COUNTY MANUFACTURERS' ASSOCIATION,
F. W. Çowing, Managing Secretary. The resolutions referred to are as follows: The board of governors of the Elk County Manufacturers' Association by unanimous vote have resolved as follows:
1. We are opposed to Government ownership and operation of the railroads in times of peace, and heartily favor their return to private ownership ss promptly as same can be done in the best interests of the country.
2. We are opposed to the so-called Plumb plan for the control of the railroads now under public discussion.
3. We respectfully urge our Senators from Pennsylvania and Congressmen from this district to use their votes and influence to carry out the purpose of these resolutions.