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A message from the Governor, at the hands of his secretary, was received and read in the words following:
STATE OF NEW YORK-EXECUTIVE CHAMBER
ALBANY, JANUARY 2, 1918
To the Legislature:
When the Congress of the United States declared war on the Imperial German government, New York responded with vigor and enthusiasm to the call for volunteers, and in every walk in life her citizens have done, and are still doing, all they can to insure the success of our cause.
The State Administration has stood solidly behind the President and Federal authorities.
There entered the military and naval service of the United States between April 1st and December 1st, over 164,014 citizens of the State of New York apportioned as follows:
New York National Guard (Federalized), over.
In this connection, I desire to call your attention to the successful operation of the Selective Draft Law by those charged with its administration in the State. The 7,947 men comprising and connected with the boards of exemption have, in all but two or three unfortunate instances, cheerfully and faithfully performed their duties at great personal sacrifice.
The amount of the first Liberty Loan apportioned to the State of New York was $897,922,000, and the amount subscribed for in the State was $1,044,724,900. The amount of the second Liberty Loan apportioned to the State of New York was $1,346,898,000, and the amount subscribed for was $1,413,107,300.
The State Food Commission provided for by Chapter 813 of the Laws of 1917, immediately upon its appointment conferred with Mr. Hoover and the Federal authorities and has worked out a plan of cooperation.
At the conference it was decided that inasmuch as under the Act of Congress the Federal authorities had certain broad powers, such as the power to determine the control of transportation and distribution, the regulation of manufacturers, wholesalers, storage and commission merchants, the enforcement of the law against hoarding, which are largely matters of an interstate character, these powers could best be exercised under the Federal Act.
The following quotation from the agreement entered into be tween the State Food Commission and Mr. Hoover shows the features of the work that could best be enforced under the State Law.
"In relation to the activities of the State Food Commission, it is recognized that at certain points the Federal and State authority and objectives overlap, in the main, the State Commission possesses much wider authority over retail distribution and possesses large powers in control of public eating places, establishment of public markets, purchase and sale of food by municipalities, collection of information, control of transportation, and stimulation of production, which are not possessed by the Federal administration.”
In order to establish the greatest possible cooperation, it was agreed that the three members of the State Food Commission and the two Federal administrators for the State of New York should be consolidated into one Federal board with the President of the State Food Commission as chairman. Thus, there has been created a combination of power and authority which will enable the National and State administrators unitedly to enforce and
make effective the control and distribution of the food supply within the State, taking advantage of the strongest provisions of both Acts.
On the 20th day of October, the City of New York duly made application for the power to buy, store and sell food and fuel, and on November first, after a hearing, the State Commission granted the City of New York the power requested upon the following conditions: first, that the grant should be revocable by the Commission, and, second, that the City of New York should make monthly reports to the Commission of its operations.
After this prompt action on the part of the State authorities, it is to be regretted that those having the matter in charge in the City have not been able to agree on the officer to do the purchasing, and hence the people have been denied the needed relief.
No other city has requested permission to buy, store and sell food or fuel under the provisions of the Act.
By the provisions of Chapter 521 of the Laws of 1917, the Excise Commissioner, with the approval of the Governor, is given power to prohibit or limit the sale of alcoholic beverages in proximity of camps and barracks of the State or Federal troops, or munition factories and places where war supplies are produced. Five orders have been made under the provisions of this chapter.
The New York State census and inventory of military resources, taken last June with the aid of one hundred and eighty thousand volunteer assistants, has furnished the State with a classified index of its residents, between the ages of sixteen and fifty-one, showing what they can do and what they own that may be of use in war time. The Federal government has been quick to take advantage of the census, securing lists of alien enemies, the names of cooks, firemen, mechanics, shipbuilders and other workers needed by the government, and the names of men who desired to enlist. Letters from officials of the Federal government state that the census has given them the most valuable assistance in their recruiting work, in speeding up ship construction and in seeking out alien enemies.
The census has also been of great assistance to the Military Training Commission in carrying out the provisions of the act