- February 19, 1931 – JSA to Mr. A. A. Davis (Izaak Walton League)
My dear Mr. Davis:
Your letter of the 18th was discussed here with several well informed people who have made a study of the Hewitt amendment, and its effects on the Adirondacks, and they urge me to send you the enclosed copy of a letter setting forth in an able manner fundamental reasons why the Hewitt amendment should not be adopted. As you probably know, Mr. Rabenold was for several years the Chairman of the Conservation Committee of the Senate and is now recognized as one of the best authorities on conservation in New York.
You will find attached to this letter, the Sportsmen’s Reforestation Bill, offered a a substitute for the Hewitt amendment. Introduced by Senator Baxter, Int. 814 and No. 855. A similar bill was introduced in the Assembly by Mr. W.W. Wemple, Jr., Int. 1164. You will note that the Sportsmen’s Reforestation bill does not put the state into the business of producing pulp-wood for power mills, or any other commodities, but does plant the same number of trees with the same amount of money, leaving it to the administrative branch of the government to determine where the trees shall be planted and for what purpose.
The Sportsmen’s Reforestation Bill does not endanger that great instrument, Section 7 of Article VII, which has for so many years acted as a barrier against commercial exploitation of the State’s playground.
We feel that your League should be strongly for the Sportsmen’s Reforestation Bill, and equally strong against the Hewitt amendment.
Ex-Senator Rabenold, 3rd Vice President of the New York State Forest, Fish and Game League, has been appointed by Mr. Dappling to have the Sportsmen’s Reforestation Bill introduced as a measure backed by the 160 affiliated organizations of this League, which went on record at the Annual Meeting last fall against any amendment to Section 7 of Article VII.
A hearing is scheduled on these bills at 2:00 PM, Wednesday afternoon, February 25th, in the Senate Chamber. We sincerely hope that your organization will join the Forest, Fish and Game League and others who will advocate the Baxter and Wemple bill, even if you cannot oppose the Hewitt amendment.
Since dictating the above I have talked with you over the long distance and want to assure you again that this action on the part of the sportsmen is consistent with both their resolutions adopted in the Annual Convention for reforestation and later their resolution against any amendment to Section &. One is reforestation and the other is plainly tree-cutting privilege sought.
I shall be indeed glad to discuss this subject with anyone in New York whom you may suggest, during my visit there with Senator Rabenold on Saturday. I can be located at 61 Broadway with Senator Rabenold, or at the Engineers Club, 31 West 40th Street.
The Izaak Walton League certainly cannot afford to be on the wrong side, and we need them very badly on the right side of this important issue.