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during the time limited by the Constitution and Laws of our said State.

IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF We have caused these our letters to be made patent and the great seal of our said State to be hereunto affixed. [LS] Witness THEODORE ROOSEVELT Governor of our said State at our City of Albany the second day of January in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety-nine. THEODORE ROOSEVELT.

Attested by


Secretary of State




Executive Chamber

Albany, January 2, 1899

APPOINTED: District Attorney of the county of Queens:


of Wantagh to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of William J. Youngs.





Executive Chamber

Albany, January 2, 1899

APPOINTED: District Attorney of the county of Kings:


of Brooklyn, to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of Josiah T. Marean.



Executive Chamber


Albany, January 2, 1899

The people of New York, like the people of every other State in the Union, are to be congratulated, because during the past year the nation has carried to a brilliant triumph one of the most righteous wars of modern times. When last spring it became evident that the interests of humanity and of national honor alike demanded that we should drive Spain from the Western Hemisphere and free from her tyranny the subject peoples of the islands of the sea, New York responded with eager zeal to the call for volunteers, and in the Cabinet, in Congress, and in camp, her representatives did all they could to ensure the

success of the American policy. We are not merely New Yorkers. We are Americans; and the interests of all Americans, whether from the North, the South, the East or the great West, are equally dear to the men of the Empire State. As we grow into a mighty nation, which, whether it will or not, must inevitably play a great part for good or for evil in the affairs of the world at large, the people of New York wish it understood that they look at all questions of American foreign policy from the most thoroughly national standpoint. The tropic islands we have taken must neither be allowed to lapse into anarchy nor to return under the sway of tyranny. War is a grim thing at best, but the war through which we have passed has left us not merely memories of glory won on land and sea, but an even more blessed heritage, the knowledge that it was waged from the highest motives, for the good of others as well as for our own national honor. Above all, we are thankful that it brought home to all of us the fact that the country was indeed one when serious danger confronted it. The men from the East and the West, from the North and the South, the sons of those who wore the blue and of those who wore the gray, the men of means and the men who all their lives long had possessed only what day by day they toiled to earn, stood shoulder to shoulder in the fight, met the same dangers, shared the same hardships and won the same ultimate triumph.

In our domestic affairs, the State is to be congratulated on the gradual return of prosperity. Though temporarily checked by the war this return has been, on the whole, steady. The capitalist finds constantly greater business opportunities; the wageworker, in consequence, is more steadily employed; the farmer has a better market.


No other question is of such permanent importance in the domestic economy of our State as the question of taxation. At present our system of taxation is in utter confusion, full of injustices and of queer anomalies. It is an exceedingly difficult subject, one well worthy the attention of our best men, the men with most highly trained minds and the broadest practical experience; men who are able to approach the subject from the standpoints alike of the farmer, the merchant, and the manufacturer. Not only is it necessary to consider whether any kind of tax ought, if practicable, to be levied, but whether it is in fact practicable to levy it. We should discourage the building up of non-taxable interests, and yet we should discourage driving property out of the State by unwise taxation, or levying a tax which is in effect largely a tax upon honesty. I most earnestly commend the whole matter to your special attention.


New York State took the lead in this country in the promotion of a canal system, and the operation of the Erie Canal has been of incalculable benefit, not merely to Buffalo, New York and Brooklyn and the cities of the Mohawk Valley, but to all of the State; for, when a part of it is benefited, the benefit is shared ultimately by the whole.

Of recent years the city of New York has fallen off relatively to other cities as regards the increase of her commerce, and in exports there has been a positive decrease. Under my predecessor a commission was appointed to examine into the causes of this decline. I recommend

that this commission be allowed ample additional time to close its work, the subject being one of such vast importance, and that it be given all needful aid.

The canals at present are in such condition that the money already expended will avail nothing if the work is discontinued. As a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, so the navigability of the canals is determined by the shallowest sections. While I do not now recommend the voting of any large amounts of money, yet in fixing up those different parts, expenditures that can be clearly made within the constitution should be authorized.

It is essential to the State no less than to the city of New York that our commercial supremacy should be maintained. With this end in view the canals should be administered economically and with an eye single to the welfare of the whole people. Any man, whether public servant or contractor, who in any way defrauds the State or perverts the business of the State to his private gain must be dealt with as rigorously as the laws will permit.

The Canal Investigating Commission, appointed by my predecessor pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 15 of the Laws of 1898, has completed its work and made its report. Its work has been of great service to the State. The act provided that the commission should serve without pay, but should receive the actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of its duty. The commission was also authorized to employ counsel, experts, engineers and such other assistants as it might deem necessary. The time for making its report was extended by my predecessor to the latest date authorized by law, and the investigation made was broad in its scope and searching in its nature.

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