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RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE WISCONSIN MANUFACTURERS
MILWAUKEE, Wis., August 27, 1919. Hon. JOHN J. Esch,
Ilouse of Representatives, Washington, D.C. DEAR SIR: By unanimous vote of the board of directors of the Wisconsin Manufacturers' Association, amplified by expressions from a very large percentage of its individual members, this organization has gone on record as being unalterably opposed to the Sims bill. H. R. 8157, popularly known as the Plumb plan of governmental control of railways. I am instructed by our president to forward to you the following resolution passed by our board: Whereas the proposition is before Congress to nationalize the railroads of the
country, which, according to the proponents of the Plumb plan, may be the first step in the nationalization of industry: Yow, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Wisconsin Manufacturers' Association declares itself unalterably opposed to Government ownership or Government operation of rail roads, as set forth in the plan of the railroad brotherhoods, which, in our estimation, is a serious menace to the welfare of our nation; and
Resolved, That we are opposed also to a continuation of Government oper. ation of railroads and that we are in favor of their return to corporate ownershiy as soon as remedial legislation can be enacted; and
Resolved, That we are unqualifiedly opposed to the nationalization of indus try, since this, in our opinion, will result in disaster to industry itself, to workers engaged therein, and to the Nation as a whole.
This organization sincerely trusts you may give this your most earnest attention. Yours, very truly,
G. F. KULL, Secretary.
RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE SAN FRANCISCO CHAMBER OF
SEPTEMBER 3, 1919. Hon. John J. Esch, Chairman Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. DEAR SIR: The San Francisco Chamber of Commerce has unanimously adopted a resolution in connection with the Plumb plan bill, H. R. 8152, as follows: Whereas a bill providing for Government ownership of railroads under the
so-called Plumb plan has been introduced in Congress by Representat
tive Sims, of Tennessee, designated as H. R. 8157; and Whereas the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce has already on several occasions gone on record by resolution opposing Government ownership of railroads: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce register with its Representatives in Congress its opposition to this plan or any other plan of Gor ernment ownership and operation of the railroads of the United States.
You are urged to oppose the bill as well as any other bill looking toward Government ownership or partial Government ownership of the railroads of the United States. Yours, truly,
San FRANCISCO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE By GEORGE C. BOARDMAN, Vice President.
RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE BISCUIT AND CRACKER MANU
NEW YORK, September 5, 1919. CHAIRMAN RAILROAD COMMITTEE,
House of Representatives, Washington, D.C. DEAR SIR: I inclose copy of resolutions of the Biscuit and Cracker Manufacturers' Association of the United States relative to the socalled Plumb bill, adopted July, 1919. This association, which is composed of the so-called “independents” in the cracker-baking industry, is, as you will note, unalterably opposed to the nationalization of industry“ with its consequent demoralization of workers, its dangers to the continuance of a republican form of government, and of ruin to industry in this country.” They also believe that the railroads should be returned to their owners, with proper protection against losses caused by Government operation, and they are absolutely opposed to the Plumb bill or any similar legislation which they believe leads toward Bolshevism and other intolerable and unAmerican principles. I commend these resolutions to your attention. Yours, very truly,
CORNELIUS W. WICKERSHAM.
(The resolutions referred to are as follows:) Whereas a proposal has been made to the Congress of the United States that
the railroads of this country be nationalized and the further suggestion has been made that such action is to be a first step in the nationalization of
other industries; and Whereas it is the sentiment of the members of this association that such nation
alization of railroads or of any other industry in this country is not a step in advance, but, on the contrary, is a backward movement leading toward Bolshevism and other intolerable and un-American principles: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Biscuit and Cracker Manufacturers' Association of the United States, composed of manufacturers in all parts of the country, does express and declare itself as unalterably opposed to Government ownership or operation of railroads as described in the plan of the railroad brotherhoods, which we believe to be the greatest menace to the common welfare and the progress of the Nation of any legislation seriously proposed since the foundation of this Republic; and it is further
Resolved, That this association is opposed to the continuance of Government operation of the railroads now that the emergency caused by the war is ended, and urges upon the Congress of the United States the return of the railroads to their owners with proper protection against losses caused by Government operation, in order that an end may be put to the inefficiency, poor service, and high cost of transportation which now characterizes the operation and use of our great transportation systems; and it is further
Resolved, That the association is unalterably opposed to the nationalization of industry with its consequent demoralization of workers, its dangers to the continuance of a republican form of government, and of ruin to industry in this country; and it is further
Resolved, That the executive committee be requested to take such further measures as may seem advisable to combat the plan of the railroad brotherhoods embodied in the so-called “Plumb bill,” or any similar proposals.
PRINCIPLES ADOPTED BY THE TRAFFIC AND TRANSPORTATION BUREAU OF THE TACOMA COMMERCIAL CLUB AND CHAMBER OF COMMERCE.
Tacoma, Wash., September 5, 1919. The traffic and transportation bureau of the Tacoma Commercial Club and Chamber of Commerce, of Tacoma, Wash., embraces as members Tacoma shippers and users of the transportation systems cf the country.
Due to the importance that Congress should find a correct and adequate answer to the question of remedial railway legislation, and appreciating the effect such legislation will have upon the future commerce of the nation, this bureau has made a careful study of the question.
In view of the importance of the subject and the widespread discussion of our railroad problem, it deems it as a duty to make known its views to its Representatives in Congress and to the Com. mittees on Interstate Commerce in both Houses of Congress.
The fundamental principles which this bureau favors are briefly summarized as follows:
Corporate ownership and operation.—We favor adherence to the policy of corporate ownership and operation of the railroads under a comprehensive system of Government regulation.
Prompt return of roads to owners.-We favor the return of the railroads to their owners as soon as remedial legislation can be enacted, and that this legislation be enacted without delay, so that the question will not become a campaign issue in the year 1920.
NOTE.—The bureau believes that remedial legislation can be enacted before the end of the calendar year. It feels that Congress should enact such legislation as early as possible, so that the railroads will be returned to corporate ownership before the campaign of 1920.
Consolidations in strong competing systems.-We favor the principle that while adhering to railroad" competition in service, the railroads be allowed, in the public interest, when so desired and as approved by public authority, to consolidate to such extent and in such manner as may be necessary to enable the existing railroads to unite in a limited number of strong competing systems, so located that principal traffic centers of the country shall, if possible, be served by more than one system. Such consolidations not to be authorized where same would cause hardship on communities, either by abandonment of weak roads or by impairing competitive conditions.
NOTE.—The bureau favors consolidation in so far as it will not affect competitive conditions which existed prior to Federal control. It is not in favor of impairing competitive conditions, whether the community be large or small.
Corporations to be subject to the United States. We favor the principle that railroad companies engaging in interstate commerce shall be required to change from State to Federal corporations, with suitable provisions in the act of Congress providing there for that the several States shall retain the power of taxation and police regulation of the properties of said railroads.
Federal regulation of capital expenditures and security issues.We favor the principle that the Interstate Commerce Commission be authorized to pass upon the public necessity for expenditures of capital (inexcess of a stipulated amount) by carriers engaged in interstate commerce, and to determine the amount and to regulate the other conditions of the issuance of securities to obtain the funds required to cover authorized capital expenditures; and that a railroad applying to the Interstate Commerce Commission for authority to make capital expenditures or to issue securities shall be required to file with the proper authorities of the States in which the railroad is located, copies of the original petition; and that the Interstate Commerce Commission be required to notify the said State authorities of the hearings upon the petition, in order that they may advise the Interstate Commerce Commission as to actions they favor.
Regulation of rates.—We favor the principle that the Interstate Commerce Commission be given authority by statute to regulate intrastate as well as interstate rates, providing:
The Interstate Commerce Commission be authorized to divide the United States into a certain number of regions and to establish in each region a regional commission consisting of one member for each State embraced therein. These regional commissions to be boards of primary jurisdiction with authority to hear and determine all complaints with respect to matters within the jurisdiction of the Interstate Commerce Commission, and their decisions to be final unless reviewed by the Interstate Commerce Commission.
Rate making by the interstate Commerce Commission. We oppose any Government guaranty of return to the railroads, as we believe the tendency would be to shift the burden in obtaining efficient and economical transportation upon the regulatory body, which would not be for the public interest.
We oppose any statutory rule of rate making by the Interstate Commerce Commission which would be designed to yield a net return to railroads of a certain amount in designated regions or traffic sections, as we believe the public would thereby be burdened with the cost of errors in promotion and management.
Wo emphatically oppose a statutory rule giving the Interstate Commerce Commission power to establish minimum rates.
We favor a broadened and enlightened continuation of the present policy. Regulation is now based upon reasonableness of rates and reasonableness necessarily includes consideration of the returns of the carriers. The present principles presuppose initiative and energy upon railroad managers in obtaining economies and in deciding wisely new expenditures.
We favor and urge the enactment of a statutory rule that in cases where general advances in rates are found necessary, after full investigation by the Interstate Commerce Commission, such increases shall not be upon the basis of a general percentage increase.
NOTE.—The recent 25 per cent increase has restricted transportation where long hauls are involved. This hardship has been especially noticeable on the Pacific coast and western territory, where high rates are prevalent.
National system of transportation.-We favor a provision for the development and encouragement of inland waterways and coordination of rail and water transportation systems by the Interstate Commerce Commission, by the establishment and maintenance of through rates between the rail and water carriers and reasonable joint rates applicable thereto, dividing upon reasonable bases, whenever and wherever such through routes will facilitate or economize in the movement of traffic and serve a real public interest.
NOTE.—We do not favor the creation of a Federal transportation board or the creation of any other regulatory body other than the Interstate Commerce Commission. We feel that the responsibility of regulating bodies should not be divided, and that if the burdens of the Interstate Commerce Commission are too great, its membership should be increased, and its organization enlarged.
Long-and-short-haul clause.—We oppose, and ask our Representatives in Congress to stoutly resist, any effort to include in the pending legislation, either in the bill itself or as a rider to said bill, any rule seeking to change the present long-and-short-haul clause of the at to regulate commerce.
RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE QUINCY FREIGHT BUREAU.
Quincy, ILL., September 6, 1919. Hon. John J. Esch,
House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. Esch: The board of government of this bureau has adopted resolutions regarding the “Plumb” bill, and, under its instructions, I beg to call your attention to same, as per copy at tached, and ask, in behalf of the board, that the subject matter and suggestions may receive your earnest consideration. Yours, truly,
L. B. BOSWELL, Commissioner.
The resolutions referred to are as follows: Whereas there is now pending before Congress a bill, H. R. 8157, introduced
by Mr. Sims, commonly known as the “Plumb plan," for the acquisition of railroads and transportation properties by the United States, and for
other purposes set forth in said bill; and Whereas it is proper and timely public opinion should be expressed with
regard to this measure in order that Congress may be informed as to the views of those who may oppose it, and for the purpose of forestalling this measure, or others of similar import that may be proposed with the intent, or as a resultant effect, to overturn and destroy the fundamental basis upon which all business in this country has been established and brought to the present standard of efficiency in operation, management, and control; and Whereas it is vitally necessary that evident future evils of the sort pro
posed in said bill shall be estopped before they bring about destruction to business, perils to our form of Government and suffering, deprivation, and
loss to all of the people; and Whereas the pending proposition is so radical in its form and purpose, and
of a nature that proposes at the expense of all of the people to establish class preference through legislation as to be at once subversive and create a body of men who might have it within their power to govern or control the destinies of the State, the people and all industries in this country; and Whereas the apparent attempt, under radical or unwise leadership, or through
the democratization of industries, to bring into power a new system of element, either untried or irresponsible, in the ownership, direction, or cotrol of industrial or commercial affairs for the purpose of self preferment and aggrandizement, is hazardous and must be met and determined definitely now by opposing it, to save the country from revolutionary methods and possible ruin: Therefore be it