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The Princeton union. [volume] (Princeton, Minn.) 1876-1976, March 04, 1909, Image 1

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83016758/1909-03-04/ed-1/seq-1/

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R. C. DUNN, Publisher. Terms $1.00 Per Tear.
Tonnage Tax Bill Will In All Proba-
bility be Reported Out for In-
definite Postponement.
Investigation of State Oil Inspection
Department Likely to Stir Up
Considerable Effluvia.
Union Special Correspondence
St. Paul, March 3, 1909.If those
on the inside have it right the Bjorge
tonnage tax bill will be reported out
by the house tax committee this week
and the verdict will be indefinite post
ponement. In any event they say the
-action taken will not be favorable, as
a canvass of the committee shows four
teen against the tax with eleven for.
Of course there will be a minority re
port. What the reception of the re
port by the house will be is hard to
determine at this time, but again tak
ing the word of an interested member
it will likewise be unfavorable. A
line-up of the house, this member says,
showed 53 against the bill with 23
doubtful, and he is confident that half
of the latter number will be convinced
of the unjustness of the whole thing
before the final vote is reached.
Speaking further on this tonnage
tax question there has been a marked
change in the sentiment for the tax
since the arguments before the com
mittee a week ago. The brief sub
mitted by C. A. Congdon, the Duluth
member, is regarded as the best argu
ment covering the matter yet put forth,
and this has been augmented by the
discovery that the special tax levies in
which are included roads and bridges,
soldiers' relief, schools and univer
sity, stood to lose heavily if the tax is
Senator C. J. Swanson of Fridley,
who has been fighting the tuberculin
test for cattle with all the vigor of a
man convinced of its unreliabililty,
played his last card on Saturday,
when the senate livestock committee
witnessed the slaughter of seventeen
cattle at South St. Paul which were
given the test and had been tagged as
afflicted with tuberculosis. The cattle,
which were blooded stock belonging to
Senator Sunberg of Kittson county,
proved the accuracy of the test. Each
proved to be thoroughly afflicted with
tuberculosis. Senator Swanson's con
tention was that the test and the live
stock sanitary board were being run
in the interest of the owners of high
grade cattle, but so far as the efficiency
of the test was concerned the senator
lost out badly.
j. .j. .5.
The Minnesota Citizens' league,
better known as the People's lobby, is
sued its first bulletin Monday covering
the doings of the legislature, but its
appearance in the legislative halls did
not cause any unusual excitement. In
most cases it found its way to the
waste baskets. Lynn Haines is the
editor, and it was natural that the bul
letin should be without the milk of
human kindness. Votes on all popu
listic measures killed by the two
houses were given in full with some
weak-kneed knocks directed at street
car and primary-law bills now before
the two bodies. A note attached con
veyed the fact that the next bulletin
would contain the vote on all
measures of importance and would be
distributed gratuitously in the
several congressional districts. This
is the organization that Frank Day,
private secretary to Gov. Johnson,
admitted giving a contribution to.
Quite a few senators added their mite,
and it is this money that pays the
salary of Lynn Haines, the secretary,
and meets the printing bills. The
league is the successor of the defunct
Minnesota Shippers' and Receivers'
association, which held forth during
the campaign and legislative session
of two years ago.
4 "J* s*
The repeal of the state primary law
went over for another two years Tues
day when the house committee on elec
tions reported out for slaughter Ole
Peterson's bill wiping the odious act
off the statute books. But while the
committee knifed the Peterson bill it
was just as emphatic regarding any
extension of the law and put to sleep
two other measures, one by John
Saugstad extending the law to state
officers, and another by Representative
Wolhuter extending its provisions to
United States senators. The only
bill reported out, and it appeared
without recommendations, was one by
John Saugstad changing the date of
the primaries from September to the
second Tuesday in June. In the sen
ate it is expected that Senator Can
field's bill creating a leagalized con
vention for the nomination of all can-
didates for office, will be reported out
for passage.
After a heated debate the senate in
committee of the whole passed
Senator Alderman's bill putting a
limitation on the number of saloons
in the state. While those now in ex
istence are not disturbed, a future in
crease is prevented, the bill limiting
the number to one for every 500 of
population. Senator Alderman fought
the opposition with the stubbornness
of a man who believes he is right,
and finally won out against those who
sought to amend the measure along
county option lines. Frank White of
Elk River has the bill in the house
and there is every indication that it
will pass.
For a tempest in a teapot, and one
in which the finish can only be one
way, St. Paul's noisy fight against
the establishment of a packing house
at New Brighton near what is known
as the Midway district, is the best yet.
The possibility of a veritable town of
smells being located near it has the
Capitol City by the ears and the citi
zens are wild on the subject. That the
new plant will ever be built is doubt
ful. As to the Ramsey county dele
gation, while putting on a serious
front in opposition, it looks upon the
whole thing as a farce and expects
what is going to happen, the defeat of
the bill introduced to prevent the lo
cation of the plant within five miles of
the university. Minneapolis is against
the bill and will win. Already the
country is flocking to its aid. St.
Paul never was great on noise, but it
had everything else shoved off the
boards when it came to wire-pulling.
A knowledge of this fact makes many
doubt the sincerity of those behind
the whole movement.
The latest thing in the way of a
commission is that offered by R. J.
Wells of Breckenridge, in which he
proposes a combination of fish, forest
and game. It is designed to take the
place of the land and iron commis
sions suggested by Gov. Johnson and
State Auditor Iverson. It practically
adds to the work of the game and fish
commission the preservation of the
state's forests. Mr. Wells' bill as
offered provides for a commission of
six to be named by the governor.
The chief of the department is to re
ceive $3,600 a year, a superintendent
of fisheries $3,000 and a chief for
ester a like amount. The bill is
favored by quite a few.
Senator George Sullivan of Wash
ington county is the proud possessor
of the pen used in signing the bill
providing for a new prison at Still
water, with a factory attached for the
manufacture of farm machinery. The
bill is now a law and the money for
the work is already available. Much
is expected of the machinery plant
which will be conducted in the inter
est of the farmers of the state.
The democratic powers that be are
now rushing to the aid of the state
fair management and, following a line
of criticism indulged in by a member
of the house committee engaged in in
vestigating the board, has some inter
views and statements by the governor
and a number of his subordinates
characterizing the strictures indulged
in as uncalled for. That the whole
might be complete Public Examiner
Schaefer has filed a report covering
an examination of the board's finances
in which he indulged in much that is
praiseworthy. The strictures indulged
in by a member of the committee in
vestigating the fair board were based
on fragmentary evidence and, while
there is no doubt some room for im
provement, the progress of the inves
tigation develops the fact that some
of the charges made were groundless.
The reason for the prompt assistance
of the kitchen cabinet needs no ex
planation here.
I have been wondering if the next
bulletin of the Minnesota Citizens'
league will contain the roll call, if
there is any, on the Virtue bill to pay
Leach & Rygard, attorneys of Owa
tonna, $1,000 for their services in dis
solving what is known as the cream
ery package trust, which has head
quarters in Chicago. This firm
represented the Owatonna concern
which sought the dissolution of the
alleged trust and finally succeeded in
getting a favorable opinion from the
supreme court ousting it from the
state. Rygard, according to the
league manual, is a member of the
board of directors of the league.
Leach is also listed in the member
A temporary victory was won by
both Cass Lake and Bemidji in their
fight for the location of a new Normal
school Tuesday, when the house ad
vanced what is known as the main bill
leaving the location of the sohool to
the state Normal board, and the Mc
Garry bill designating Cass Lake as
the site, to general orders. The com
mittee in its report recommended in
definite postponement for all bills
with the exception of the Hinds'
measure, leaving the location to the
state Normal board. P. H. McGarry
of Walker objected and was success
ful to the extent that his bill was taken
from the list of killed. The com
mittee then pressed consideration of
the Hinds' bill and it also prevailed.
All of the towns interested had rep
resentatives on the floor and the fight
was a lively one. Some of the mem
bers profess to believe that the bitter
ness of the scrap will result in the
whole thing being sent to the discard.
An opinion not at all to the liking
of the kitchen cabinet was given the
early part of the week by Attorney
General Simpson, when he held that
the public examiner's department was
without authority when it attacked the
policy of any state department under
examination. Its duties, Mr. Simpson
declared, under the law were to be
confined entirely to accounting, and
any comment or strictures indulged in
beyond that were without warrant.
The opinion received general approval
about the capitol. The use of the
public examiner's department to
besmirch the character of those whom
the administration in charge wished
to reach began with former Public
Examiner Pope and has been carried
to excess since. The prince of them
all was former Public Examiner
Johnson, but his work was so coarse
as to receive general condemnation.
One of the exacting and trying po
sitions in the house is the chairman
ship of the temperance committee,
for no matter how fair the presiding
officer may be, if he is not directly for
or against any pending measure his
sincerity and views are challenged.
It is impossible for the opposition to
look upon him as on the square.
This, however, can not be said of
Geo. A. Mackenzie, whose rulings as
head of this committee to date have
been eminently fair and who has not
permitted any smothering of bills-as
far as his committee was concerned.
They have all been reported out in
order and the house allowed to decide
whether they should live or die. Mack
is generally looked upon as one of the
heavyweights of the house.
Brady's anti-cigarette bill has been
reported out for passage and it looks
as if the bill would prevail. That it
will ever be of any effect is doubted as
its constitutionality is in dispute.
Next week the house will start on an
investigation of the state oil inspec
tion department and it is expected that
there will be some disclosures. An
ticipating such, Frank Day and his
aids made every effort to sidetrack
the resolution calling for the inquiry
but failed. Out of the investigation
which was started by Representative
Rosenwald of Madison may come a
bill providing for the abolishment of
the department. Of late years it has
grown into a big political machine
and the taxpayers of the state might
be ahead if it was wiped out
Word comes that the proposition to
add the care of the state's forests to
the game and fish commission is
another kitchen cabinet scheme, the
idea being to get hold of the numerous
fire wardens which such a department
would entail. There is nothing au
thentic, but it is plausible. No one
ever found the kitchen cabinet over
looking any bets.
The Bjorge tonnage tax bill will be
reported out tomorrow by the tax com
mission without recommendation, and
it will go on general orders when an
opportunity will be afforded to discuss
its merits if it has any. If the mem
bers vote their honest convictions the
bill will never pass the house. But
we have, I am sorry to say it, some
members who are afraid to vote on
this measure as their conscience dic
tates. If the tonnage tax proposition
was thoroughly understood it would
have few friends within or without the
legislature, save the leg-pullers.
In political circles here I. A. Cas
well of Anoka is looked upon as a
candidate to succeed Carl Pidgeon, the
present clerk of the supreme court.
Caswell is deputy clerk. Another said
to have aspirations is George Dix of
St. Paul. Pidgeon has given it out
straight that he will retire with the
close of his term.
.j. .g. g.
Senator Dar Hall of Buffalo Lake
has the spotlight in an endeavor to
repeal what is known as the corrupt
practices act of the state primary law.
Naturally the metropolitan press is
opposed and is saying abusive things.
The Buffalo Lake man is not alone in
his opposition to the corrupt practices
act. It is a dead letter and is a farce
in every respect. Senator Hall is be
ing congratulated on all sides in his
effort to secure the repeal of the law.
and the chances are bright for success.
How the house will receive the propo
sition is another matter.
The Total Floating and Bonded
Indebtedness of the Village
Can Be Wiped Out
in Five Years.
All That is Necessary is Careful Bus-
iness flanagement and the
Levying of a Direct Tax
For That Period.
In another column appears the an
nual statement of the village recorder.
On March 1, 1908, there was a balance
of $1,705.72 in the treasury of the gen
eral fund. On February 25,1909, there
was a deficit or outstanding orders
against said fund of $81.39. On March
1,1$H)8, there was $239.65 in the electric
fund. On February 25, 1909, there was
$433 19 in the electric fund. The total
receipts of the general fund, including
the balance on hand of $1,705.72 at
commencement of fiscal year, were
$9,597.88. The disbursements
amounted to $9,679.27, leaving a deficit
as above stated of $81.39. But it
should be borne in mind that there
was some extraordinary expenses in
curred during the year The council
was compelled to erect a new jail
building which cost $780.45 village
scales cost $403.25 $500 was appropri
ated to aid in the construction of the
new bridge across the Rum river
south of the village the team and
sprinkler, etc., cost $1,132.94 wages
of teamster, feed for team, etc., came
to $707.90 and the income derived from
the village scales was $235.35 less than
the wages paid the weighmaster. We
do not care to discuss the purchase of
a team and sprinkler. The figures
speak for themselves. The village
scales should be turned over to some
proper person who will attend to them
for a share of the receipts. Certainly
the village should not conduct the
same at a net loss at the rate of
$235 35 in eight months. But in any
event there was an extraordinary ex
penditure of over $3,000 for the past
year that will not have to be met this
On February 25, 1909, the outstand
ing floating indebtedness of the village
wa?$M,697*28 and the bonded In
debtedness was $16,000, making a total
indebtedness of $30,264.09. But from
this should be deducted the sum of
$1,202 25the amount in the county
treasury from the tax levied direct by
the state auditor to meet the interest
and principal on the bonds of the vil
lage held by the state. Thus the net
indebtedness of the village at the
present writing is $29,061.84.
The only argument advanced in
favor of almost doubling the bonded
indebtedness is that the village will
save interest. There is nothing to that
argument. Village orders bear six
per cent interest. Bonds will bear
four per cent interest if the state takes
them, and at least five per cent if
taken by private individuals. But it
is hardly worth while to discuss the
bonding proposition.
This year a direct tax of $4,000 has
been levied, there will be at least $3,000
less extraordinary expenses, even al
lowing fir a new boiler at the power
house, and it should be an easy
matter, with any kind of decent man
agement to pay up $6,000 of the
floating indebtedness. By levying a
direct tax of $4,000 annually for four
more years, and good business man
agement, every dollar of the floating
and bonded indebtedness can be can
celled, and every level-headed busi
ness man will agree that that is the
thing to do.
Of course these figures are based on
the presumption that the village will
continue to receive the same revenue it
is now receiving from liquor licenses.
It would require an additional tax
levy of 16.40 mills on the real and per
sonal property of the village annually
tp produce the amount that is received
from liquor licenses that would mean
an additional tax of $1.64 on every
one hundred dollars of valuation.
For instance, if a person's valuation
was $500 he would be obliged to pay
an additional tax of $8.20 annually.
The total valuation of the village, real
and personal, is $349,779 the amount
received from liquor licenses last year
was $5,731 divide the license money by
the valuation and it will give you the
rate. It is simply a question of
divisionno fraction of a mill less
than a tenth is considered in extend
ing taxes. We are making no argu
ment for or against licensesimply
stating facts.
But whether there is license or no
license we hold that it is good busi
ness policy for the village to liquidate
its indebtedness as speedily as pos
sible. If additional bonds
amount of $15,000 are voted
to at
time it will beget extravagance and
in a short time there will be more
floating indebtedness accumulated.
We reiterate, with careful business
management and a reasonable direct
tax annually, the village will be com
pletely out of debt five years from this
time. It is good policy for an in
dividual to economize and pay his
debts instead of incurring fresh obli
gations and the same rule applies with
equal force to a municipality.
Representatives or License and No-License
Wet Together and Agree on a
Village Ticket.
At a meeting held in M. S. Ruther
ford's office on Tuesday afternoon
which was attended by a dozen or
fifteen people representing the license
and no-license advocates the follow
ing ticket was unanimously agreed
upon. President of the council, Wm.
H. Ferrell recorder, A. N. Lenertz
councilmen, E. K. Evens, R. E. Jones
and Elmer E. Whitney treasurer,
John F. Petterson assessor, D. A.
Kaliher justices of the peace, A. Z.
Norton and C. A. Dickey: constables,
Allen Hayes and Archie Whitcomb.
Those who are opposed to license
have certainly no reason to find fault
with the make-up of the ticket. The
idea was to avoid strife and dissen
sion and get a good business village
council. If the majority of the voters
decide in favor of license next Tues
day, license will be granted as hereto
fore, but the law governing the sale
of intoxicating liquors will be strictly
enforced. If on the other hand the
village "goes dry," every effort will
be made to suppress "blind pigs" and
the illicit sale of intoxicating bever
ages. In any event we will have a
good business council. This is as it
should be.
It was determined that the ballots
to be used should be identical in every
particular save in the words "For
License" and "Against License."
The ballot to be voted by those who
favored license would have the words
"For License" printed at the foot of
the same, and the ballot to be voted
by those who oppose license would
have printed thereon, "Against
License." The bond proposition will
appear on a separate ballot.
At the meeting only two out of fifteen
favored bonding the village to take
up the floating indebtedness. The
majority were of the opinion that the
floating indebtedness, with careful
business management, could be
wiped out in a couple of years, and
in any event a bond issue of $15,000
was too much, as the greater share of
the $4,000 levied 'iu taxes last year
will be paid in within the next two
From start to finish the meeting
was harmonious and no one seemed
particularly anxious to force his
views or push his candidates. The
spirit that actuated all was to suggest
a ticket of representative men who
would labor to promote the best
interests of the village, and we think
they succeeded admirably.
What is Required by Law.
Section 783 revised laws and chap
ter 123 general laws of 1905, require
that five-eighths of all those voting
on the question of issuing village
bonds shall vote in favor of the
issuance of said bonds before the
same can be legally issued. Thus
for instance, if 300 people vote on
the bonding proposition in this vil
lage next Tuesday no bonds can be
issued unless 188 vote in favor of
If bonds are voted and the state
makes the loan the bonds will bear
four per cent interest, and section 789
revised laws expressly provides that
such loans shall not be made for a
period less than five nor more than
twenty years. In other words no part
of the loan can be paid before five
We quote the law and give the sec
tions and chapter. Chimney-corner
lawyers may tell you to the contrary,
but we give the law as it is. If bonds
are voted next Tuesday no part of the
same can be paid until five years
Birthday Anniversary Celebration.
On Saturday it was Mrs. George
Staples' birthday anniversary and in
the afternoon a number of ladies
called to wish her many happy re
turns of the day. They took with
them a large quantity of edibles and
invited themselves to supper. Shortly
before 6 o'clock their husbands and
others arrived, making in all twenty
nine persons who sat down to the
evening meal. Directly after supper
tables were arranged for card playing
and the good old game of "Five Hun
dred" was enjoyed until 11:59 o'clock,
when R. C. Dunn called time and the
game was chopped off short. Such a
jolly time was the party having that
had the next day not been the Sab
bath the game would likely have con
tinued until daylight."
Company Receiving Special Instruc-
tions From Drillmaster Booth
of the Regular Army.
A Tie for Honors in the Series of In-
door Rifle Shoots is Reported
From Headquarters.
Under the instructions of Corporal
Booth, a regular army man from Fort
Snelling, the members of Company G,
M. N. G., are making rapid progress
in military tacticsthey have in fact
attained the front rank among militia
organizations. As a drillmaster Cor
poral Booth can scarcely be excelled
he is proficient in all the details of
the manual of military art and,
though strict in discipline, the in
structor is well liked by the boys.
Corporal Booth will remain here until
March 15.
From three to four drills are held
weekly. A regular company drill will
be held tonight and a non-commis
sioned officers' school tomorrow and
Saturday evenings. On Monday
evening a company drill will be again
There has been a good attendance
throughout the series so far and the
boys manifest much interest in the ex
ercises. In the indoor rifleshoot, con
ducted throughout the winter months,
Company tied for honors with the
field staff and band and Company
of Duluth, therefore a couple of extra
shoots will be necessary between these
organizations in order to determine
who is entitled to the pennant. Cap
tain Clair Caley thinks that his com
pany has a very good chance of com
ing out ahead. It might be well to
mention here that Captain Caley is
one of the most enthusiastic National
Guard officers in the state. He puts
forth every effort to keep his company
in the first rank, and how well he has
succeeded is shown by the enviable
position which Company has
^License or No-License
The question of license or no-license
is to be voted upon in this village
next Tuesday. There is now and
always has been a large element in
the village conscientiously opposed
to licensing saloons. On the other
hand there are many who are of the
opinion that licensed saloons are
preferable to "blind pigs" and "tem
perance billiard halls." Princeton
always has been a license town, and
it is thirty years since the question of
license or no-license was last submit
ted to the votersthen the town and
village comprised one election district.
So far as we know the saloons have
been%reasonably well conducted. Our
people are orderly and well-behaved
and there is comparatively little open
drunkenness. The court records will
show that Princeton is as free from
crime as any of the neighboring vil
lages. On the whole Princeton is a
pleasant place of residence.
Those who are opposed to granting
license had a perfect right to have
the question submitted to the voters as
the law provides, and if the majority
ol the voters decide against issuing
license, every effort should be made
to prevent the surreptitious sale of
liquor. If on the other hand the
liberal element prevails every in
dividual who obtains license to dis
pense liquors should be obliged to
comply with every requiiement of the
law, and the saloon-keeper who sells
to a minor or a drunkard should be
severely dealt with and his license
should be revoked.
If the men whose names are men
tioned elsewhere are elected the law
governing the sale of intoxicating
liquors will be enforced to the letter.
But there is no necessity for any
one to become unduly excited over
this question. There is room for
honest difference of opinion. The
majority should rule. When the bal
lots are counted and the result an
nounced next Tuesday all should
gracefully acquiesce in the decision
arrived at by a majority of the voters,
and work in unison to promote the
best interests of the village.
Taft*s Inauguration.
Today William Howard Taft will
be inaugurated as president of the
United States and the event promises
to be the most brilliant pageant ever
recorded in history. Washington is
thronged with, people from all parts of
the United States and all quarters of
the globe to participate in the festivi
ties. Accommodations ,for 50,000
persons have been provided upon
stands erected on Pennsylvania ave
nue, the principal thoroughfare which
the procession will traverse, and Mr.
Taft will deliver his inaugural address
from a magnificently decorated stand
out of doors so that all may have an
opportunity of listening to him.

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