The frontier. (O'Neill City, Holt County, Neb.) 1880-1965, April 05, 1951, Page 3, Image 3

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    State Capitol News—
Liquor Probe, Air Junket, Banker Ruckus
Relieve Monotony for Unicameral
Statehouse Correspondent, Nebraska Press Ass'n
I LINCOLN — The legislature
plunged into a revamped work
schedule this week determined
to drive for adjournment before
June 1, but warned by one of its
leaders that the members were
“not getting anywhere and if
you want to be here until the
middle of June, vou’re certainly
working toward it.”
The warping came from im
patient little Sen. Arthur Car
mody, of Trenton, who is pushing
for an early adjournment.
The juggling of the work was
ordered by T,t. Gov. Charles War
ner, who with Legislative Clerk
Hugo Srb. picked out 19 bills
dealing with revenue and taxa
tion and moved them to the top
of the list to be considered this
week. Simultaneouslv. Sen. Har
ry Pizer, of North Platte, chair
man of the committee on arrange
ment and order, summoned his
group to discuss priority for other
* * *
'Head for Cover'
Salon's Warning—
Whether it was the prospect of
one of the longest sessions in the
14-year historv of the unicamera,1
or whether they hadn’t complete
ly recovered from last week’s
unscheduled overnight stay in
Gering and Scottsbluff, the law
makers were - snapping at each
other like tired terriers.
Committee members badgered
witnesses unmercifully during
the latter part of the week and
there were several cases of fric
tion on the floor. This deporter
thought at first it might have
been simply his imagination un
til he discussed with several of
the men who are most sensitive
to the legislative mood, the lob
“Only one thing to do when
they’re like this, son,” an old
hand cautioned, “just head for
• • •
Insurance Lists
The liquor probe of the legis
lature took a back seat during
the week to developments out
side the legislature. Gov. Val
Peterson told reporters “it ap
pears that (Liquor Commission
Blaine) Young has violated the
law” by having “part of the in
surance business” of 33 Omaha
liquor licensees.
The governor had asked Young
to furnish him with the list af
ter Sen. Hugh Carson, of Ord,
had charged Young was using
his position to sell insurance to
tavern owners and after a for
mer Omaha licensee had told the
liquor probers that commission
agents had “given him a hard
time” after he had not followed
their “advice” to buy his insur
ance from Young.
Peterson withheld immedi
ately action on Young pending
a reply from the attorney-gen
ral as to whether he had fur
nished grounds for removal
from office.
In his letter to the governor,
Young protested that “I have
never tried harder/in my life to
do a good job.”
At week’s end, Carson, who
thus far has asked most of the
questions in the liquor inquiry,
asked another:
"Did Mr. Young supply all the
names of his insurance clients in
the liquor business? His list does
n’t agree with mine.”
• • •
Sales Tax Bill Still
In Committee—
A sales tax for Nebraska?
That was the question for four
hours before the legislature’s
revenue committee last week as
tireless Sen. Dwight Burney,
perennial sponsor of a sales tax
FRONTIER GETS AWARD . . . Dr. William F. Swindler (third
from left), director of the University of Nebraska school of jour
alism, presents Carroll W. (“Cal”) Stewart, publisher of The
Frontier, with one of two awards granted by the university. At
the far left is Paul F. Wagner, publisher of the Dakota County
Star (South Sioux City), which won a “general excellence” award
from the Nebraska Press association. Wagner was recently ap
pointed administrative assistant to Gov. Val Peterson. Second
from the left is Jack Lough, publisher of The Albion News. The
News was one of the four papers winning Ak-Sar-Ben placques
for “community service.” Awards were made in Lincoln at the an
nual Nebraska Press association convention in March. — Lincoln
Star Photo.
measure, and his co-introducers
Sen. Chris Metzgar, of Cedar
Creek, and Carl Lindgrtn ,of
Campbell, extolled the virtures
of a 2 percent tax on everything
but rents, some farm supplies |
and articles already covered by j
a sales tax, like gasoline and'
The opposition was formidable.
It was led by Robert Armstrong,
paid secretary of the Omaha Tax
payers association, and included
a solid labor front. Farm organi
zations were divided. The Grange,
represented by B. V. Holmes,
of Milburn, and Dr. H. C. Filley,
of Lincoln, favored the bill, as
did Charles Marshall, of Elm
wood, president of the Farm
Bureau Federation. Appearing a
gainst the proposal was Chris
Milius, of Omaha, head of the
Farmers Union.
Observers gave the bill little
chance of getting out of commit
tee. Chairman of the group is
Sen. Charles Tvrdik, of Omaha,
who has debated the sales tax
issue publicly with Burney. In
the 1949 session, for the first
time, the sales tax bill was vot
ed out to the floor but was kil
led there.
One Opponent of
Parimutuel race betting in Ne
braska will continue, the govern
ment committee decided as it vot
ed 8-0 to kill Senator Carson’s
proposal calling for a vote on out
lawing the practice. Carson, a
member of the eommitee, did not
vote against killing his bill.
When Chairman Karl Vogel
asked the 100-odd persons in the
hearing room to indicate which
side of the issue they were on,
nearly all signified their opposi
tion while no one appeared in
support. During the hearing,
however, Dr. Frank Court, pas
tor of St. Paul’s Methodist church
in Lincoln, entered and asked to
speak for the bill.
"Wherever you find gamb
ling,” he told the committee,
"you find a force that will tear
down character.”
A1 Raun, of Walthill, represen
ter the Nebraska Fair Managers
association in protesting the bill.
He pointed out that more than
80 percent of Nebraska’s fairs
“would be in economic difficul
ty” without the funds from rac
James P. Lee, of Omaha, a
member of the board of govern
ors of Ak-Sar-Ben which runs
the state’s biggest race meeting,
emphasized the lack of demand
for repeal of the law and point
ed out that his organization this
year budgeted $106,000 for “char
itable, education and agricultur
al purposes.”
Others appearing in opposition
were Warren Albert, of Colum
bus; Percy Ressequie, of Madi
son, State Fair Secretary Ed
Schultlz, E. F. Pettis, of Ak-Sar
Ben, John Binning, of Lancaster
County Taxpayers league; Mur
ray Champine, Omaha business
man, and Jake Sulemberger, of
the Alliance fair board.
Legislative observers predict
that Senator Carson’s LB 320,
which levies a 5 percent tax on
the handle at partimutuel tracks,
will not encounter the same op
* * *
Hartinglon Banker
Opposes Appointment—
E. W. Rossiter, president of the
Bank of Hartington, became in
volved in an argument with state
senators during a hearing be
fore a legislative committee in
Lincoln Wednesday, March 28:
The Omaha World-Herald pub
lished the following account of
the incident:
“A Hartington banker startled
a legislative committee Wednes
day by wresting a document from
the hands of a protesting state
"E. W. Rossiter, president of
the Bank of Hartington, won the
tug-of-war with Senator John P.
McKnight, of Auburn. But later
he yielded to the requests of
Senator McKnight and Chairman
Harry Pizer, of North Platte, and
handed the document back to the
committee on committees.
"Declared Senator Arthur Car
mody, of Trenton:
"In six sessions in the legis
lature, this is the most disgrace
ful action I’ve seen. I think this
man owes this committee a pub
lic apology.’
“Mr. Rossiter did not apolo
"The Hartington banker had
appeared to oppose approval of
Governor Peterson’s appointment
of State Banking Director J. F.
McLain to another two-year
"But after hearing a parade of
bankers indorse Mr. McLain, the
committee quickly approved the
reappointment on a voice vote.
The appointment now goes to the
floor of the legislature for a
“Mr. Rossiter declared that
Mr. McLain is *deliberately doing
everything he can’ to keep state
banks from becoming members
of the Federal Reserve System.
“He showed the committee
photostatic copies of a letter ad
dressed to him and signed by
Maple T. Harl, chairman of the
Federal Deposit Insurance Cor
poration. The letter praised Mr.
"The Hartington banker asked
that the letter not be made pub
lic. He did not explain what con
nection he thought there was be
tween the letter and his opposi
tion to Mr. McLain.
“When Senator John J. Larkin,
Jr., of Omaha, asked why the
letter should not be made public,
IM.r. Rossiter strode to the head
of the committee table and wrest
ed a copy away from Senator
"Senator McKnight insisted
r 4
that the letter go into the public
records of the committee.
“Earl H. Wilkins, of Geneva,
president of the Nebrsaka Bank
ers Association, introduced a
string of witnesses who strongly
urged Mr. McLain’s reappoint
Make GAMBLES your fishing
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Mr. and Mrs. H. L. Walling, of
Albion, were weekend guests at
I the L. C. Walling home.
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