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NEW YORK, December 21, 1921.
To the Governor of the State of New York,
To the Governor of the State of New Jersey.
The Port of New York Authority presents herein its report and recommendations complying with Chapter 203, Laws of 1921, State of New York; and Chapter 152, Laws of 1921, State of New Jersey.
The recommendations of the Port Authority are based upon two fundamental principles - the economic needs of commerce and the public policy of port development. The conclusions reached have been derived from an intensive study and review of the work of The New York-New Jersey Port and Harbor Development Commission during the years 1917 to 1920 inclusive (contained in the report submitted to the Legislature, dated December 16, 1920), and after extended conferences and discussions with substantially all of the public and private agencies engaged in the business of transportation, the conduct of commerce and industry, and in the supply of the people with the necessaries of life, supplemented by much additional research by the Port Authority and its staff.
Having taken the oath of office, the Commissioners met for organization on April 25, 1921, there being present Frank R. Ford, Eugenius H. Outerbridge, Lewis H. Pounds, Alfred E. Smith, J. Spencer Smith and DeWitt Van Buskirk, being all of the Commissioners.
The Commissioners organized by electing Eugenius H. Outerbridge, Chairman; J. Spencer Smith, Vice-Chairman, and appointed William Leary, Secretary; Carl A. Ruhlmann, Assistant Secretary, Julius Henry Cohen, Counsel; General George W. Goethals, Consulting Engineer, and B. F. Cresson, Jr., Chief Engineer. Appropriate sub-committees
were appointed to report on complete organization, by-laws, offices, budget, staff personnel, advisory council, public information, and on the procedure for public hearings and conferences required by the statutes. (Chapter 203, Laws of 1921, State of New York; and Chapter 152, Laws of 1921, State of New Jersey.)
On April 30th the compact between the two States establishing the Port District and creating The Port of New York Authority was formally signed in the great hall of the Chamber of Commerce of the State of New York, thus completing the legal steps necessary to effectuate the compact as a binding obligation between the two States and to establish The Port of New York Authority as a body corporate and politic. Subsequently this was ratified by Congress by the passage of the Edge-Ansorge joint resolution introduced by Senator Walter E. Edge in the Senate, and by Congressman Martin C. Ansorge in the House, both bodies voting unanimously for its passage.
On August 23d, President Harding approved the action. of Congress, affixing his signature in the presence of a large company, with appropriate ceremonies to mark so important an occasion.
Completion of Staff Organization.
The Commissioners met on May 11th, as a body corporate and politic, and reaffirmed and adopted the elections, appointments and proceedings taken at the previous meeting. In accordance with the law the Commissioners proceeded to take over all of the property, data and materials formerly the property of the New York-New Jersey Port and Harbor Development Commission. The organization was rapidly completed in its several departments, such as the Engineering Staff, Statistical Department, Bureau of Information and clerical force. There was appointed to the Engineering and Statistical Staff W. W. Drinker, Terminal Engineer; J. E. Ramsey, Chief Statistician; H. C. Bixler,
Transportation Engineer; E. C. Church, Transportation Engineer; J. A. Jackson, Electrical Engineer, and to the Technical Advisory Board, Nelson P. Lewis, Morris R. Sherrerd and Francis Lee Stuart, well known and distinguished consulting engineers. Eric H. Palmer was appointed Director of the Bureau of Information and Edward J. Tschimbke, Chief Clerk.
Immediate provision was made for the constitution of the Advisory Council from the Chambers of Commerce, Boards of Trade and Civic Societies, of which there were one hundred and three (103) within the Port District. The several agencies engaged in transportation, such as the twelve trunk line railroads, the steamship, lighterage, warehouse and trucking interests, and various specialized industries, were invited to organize cooperating committees in order that points of contact might be immediately established for the necessary conferences. The method of reaching and informing the public at large was more difficult. It was not possible to place in everyone's hands the analysis of existing conditions and how those affected their lives, or to present the subject so that they could adequately understand and approve any specific form of relief. The sociological aspect of this subject, however, is, perhaps, one of the most important. It was imperative that the public should understand its bearing on their business and living costs.
The Commissioners, therefore, decided to create an Advisory Council on Education to advise on the best methods of informing the public on this subject and to lend its active assistance. A small committee on plan and scope was first organized. A large group of representative citizens composed of men and women were invited to compose the Council. A large number of those invited accepted and the council has been of great assistance. Among other plans it has offered prizes for the best essay on the port problem and what it means to the people, to be competed for by scholars in the high schools in the Port District in both