Vocational School to Remain Open

Camden Courier-Post – June 15, 1933

Freeholders Also Rescue Farm Aid Bureau and Home Extension Service

By approving issuance of a $20,000 emergency note, the Camden County Board of Freeholders yesterday afternoon assured continuance of the Camden County Vocational Training School and maintenance of the Agricultural Demonstration Bureau and Home Economic Extension Service until December 31.

To bring this about, the board voted to take advantage of a, new state law permitting them to either refund present bond issues due or declare a moratorium on paying-off maturing bonds for three years.

Being relieved of the obligation of paying off maturing bonds, the board decided to continue the work of the school and two bureaus. The board voted to allot $16,500 to the school, $1700 to the agricultural bureau and $1500 to Home Economics. The school was scheduled to close this month. The two bureaus were closed February 1 despite protests from thousands of citizens.

The resolution authorizing the move was introduced by Horace G. Githens, Republican floor leader.

“This will assure continuation of the school at least until the end of the year,” said Githens. “We have always been of the opinion that these three functions of the county government are essential and should be continued without an increase in the tax rate.

“When, however, the county budget for 1933-34 was being considered, it was honestly determined that the money would not be available. At that time our legislative delegation suggested the possible relief through legislative action. These matters were therefore held in abeyance.

“Now we are happy to be in a better position. The legislature adopted or assured the adoption of bills sponsored by our Camden legislators which will make available to our comity sufficient money to provide continuance of the three agencies without increasing county taxes.”

Refunding to Be Sought

Resolutions set forth that $330,000 worth of bonds mature this year and $2,352,000 in 1934 and that the board cannot see its way clear to meet these obligations. Therefore the bondholders will be requested to agree to refunding these bonds, the first installment to be made in five years and the balance not later than 10 years. C.C. Collings and Company were named agents for the bonds and the First Camden National and Trust Company depository.

If the bondholders refuse to agree to this arrangement, the board will declare a “holiday” and defer payments for three years.

When the board passed its resolutions regarding the school and two bureaus, Mrs. Marion R. Gilpin, president of the Camden County Council of Parents and Teachers, thanked the members. She had led a fight several months against ending the activities of these branches of the county institutions.

Petitions signed by 10,406 residents of Camden and 13,689 living in the county were withheld when the board announced it intended to reopen the two bureaus and keep the school in operation for the balance of the year. Fifty-three civic groups, clubs and Parent-Teacher Associations were included in the protest.

Mrs. Verga Appointed

Mrs. Elizabeth C. Verga, vice chairman of the state Republican committee, was named to the board of supervisors for old age relief for a five year term over the objections of Minority Leader George Brunner, of the Fourteenth ward.

Brunner said that because of her political position Mrs. Verga could not be expected to give impartial relief into which politics might be injected.

Alexander P. Schuenemann, Republican, jumped to his feet to defend Mrs. Verga, saying Brunner’s remarks were in the nature of charges against her.

Brunner replied that he would make the same objection if a prominent Democrat were being considered and for the same reasons.

County Engineer Beal M. Shucker was authorized to ask the State Highway Commission to match $25,000 appropriated by Camden County for the purchase of rights of way for relocation of the Haddonfield-Berlin road to skirt Gibbsboro.

Bids were rejected for the Church Road bridge, Colestown, because one was in error. The road and bridge committees were authorized to re-advertise for new bids.

A communication from the Camden County Medical Society asked the board to transfer the Department of Labor from the hall at Fifth Street and Taylor Avenue to more adequate quarters in the new court house annex. The society said the Workmen’s Compensation Bureau is housed in unfit quarters which are far too small. The letter was referred to the property committee.

Contract Awarded

The Had-Col Construction Company was awarded a contract for the reconstruction of River Road from Springfield Avenue to the northeast end in Pennsauken township on a bid of $14,633.

After passing a resolution of sympathy on the death of Edward Holloway, former custodian of the court house and city hall, the board elected Thomas Dickinson, Jr., acting custodian, at no increase in salary over what he received as assistant.

Brunner protested. He said the office of assistant custodian should be abolished as an economy measure.

Dr. Leslie H. Ewing, director of the board, replied the county was saving money by naming Dickinson as acting custodian without drawing the salary given to Holloway.

Hospital Bids Asked

The Lakeland central plant and asylum committee was authorized to advertise for bids for furnishing the the new hospital for mental diseases. They will be received at the hospital board room on June 28.

In a communication to the board Wayland P. Cramer, county director of emergency relief, that the board for the quarters provided in the court house annex and for the cooperation of the board. He thanked the leaders of both political parties “for not permitting any phase of human suffering to become ensnarled with political expediency during the present crisis.”

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