Page 1


The one great rule of composition is to speak the truth. THOREAU The -c \(N CO, . .1\\ r . ., 0, ,,,,,,., \(3” ez ..’3 . –1, .,,,,s 4 VI S’ ‘Q. ”. indent-Liberal Weekly Newspaper We will serve no group or party but will hew hard to the truth as we find it and the right as we see it. Observer Vol. 50 \\\\ 0 TEXAS, MARCH 28, 1959 10c per copy No. 51 `Ability to Pay’ Daniel’s Flag AUSTIN A throttle on the voices of the cities in the legislature pends now in the Senate, where it is sure to meet active opposition but may pass or fail on the turn of a senator’s head. Rep. Will Ehrle’s limitation on the cities’ voting power, a proposed constitutional amendment for public vote, passed the House, 109-32, after the delegations from the four biggest cities gave thirteen votes toward their own group’s restriction LEADERS CONFER ON ILLITERACY AUSTIN Illiteracy in Texas, to which the Observer, and only this paper has called attention as a statewide problem, is the subject of the first “Texas Conference on Illiteracy” at Baylor University April 3-4, Dr. Richard Cortright, director of Baylor’s literacy center, has announced. The Observer late last year revealed that there are 800,000 adult illiterates in Texas past the age of 24, according to Cortright, who uses the federal standard of failure to complete four grades of schooling. Dr. J. W. Edgar, commissioner of education in Texas; Sen. Jarrard Secrest, Temple; Dr. W. R. White, president of Baylor; Raymond Dillard, president of Hughes Oil Co., Mexia, and others, will participate in the conference. Secrest’s subject is “Our State Must Become Literate.” Edgar will moderate a panel on the subject, “How to Make Texas Literate.” and country liberals split about even for and against. Traditionally dominated by rural areas, which have more members proportionally than city areas, the House sought to extend even further the rural voting majorities by shoving through the chamber a proposed rule that no county can have more than nine representatives unless its population reaches 1,300,000, at which time it may have one more, and thereafter one more for each 400,000 people. Rep. Joe Burkett, Kerrville, defeated candidate for speaker, and Rep. James Cotten, Weatherford, “worked the floor” intensively for the amendment, which was especially designed to slap the liberal Harris County delegation. While the proposal w ill not change representation from Dallas or Fort Worth under the expected 1960 census figures, \(permitting them both to increase to San Anto2lio an increase to nine, Harris County would be cut down from about 12 to nine. In the longer run, of course, the plan would severely curtail proportional representation for all the major cities. Rep. Bob Eckhardt, Houston, observed that whereas under present rural-imposed restrictions, the cities could attain proportional representation when the state’s population reaches 15,000,000, under the Ehrle amendment this would not be possible until Texas has 60 million people. Neither the country liberals nor the city delegations adhered to the concept of proportional representation for the cities. Sixteen of the most consistent liberals from the rural areas, for example, split eight eight; 13 representatives from the state’s four largest cities voted in favor of the limitation on the cities’ representation, while only 14 from these same four cit ies voted no. Thus breaking the liberals and the cities both, the Burkett-Cotten floor work was consummate technically. Among rural liberals, ayes for the limitation included B,allman, Carriker, Clements, Dewey, Hinson, Myatt, Wells, and Yezak. Nos included Fenoglio, Charles Hughes, Jamison, Korioth, Mullen, Wheeler, and Zbranek; Glass was present not voting. Both Springer and Harrington, from middle sized towns, voted aye. Members from the state’s four largest cities voting for the limitation on the cities: Bell, McKay, Russell, Strickland, a n d Valiance of San Antonio, Robert EHRLE Hughes, James, Johnson, Bill Jones, and Lewis of Dallas; Green, Lary, and Shannon. of Fort Warth, McDonald, Fort Worth, and Seeligson, San not vote. Of the top four delegations, only Harris County was solid for the cities. The 32′ nos: Atwell, Bridges, Cole, Cowen, Crosthwait, Daily, Dugas, Eckhardt, Fenoglio, Gladden, Glusing, Hale, Chas. Hughes, Isaacks, Jamison, Johnston, Kennard, Kilgarlin, Kilpatrick, Korioth, LaValle, Malcolm McGregor, Miller, Mullen, Pipkin, Rosas, W i 1 1 Smith, Spears, Wheeler, Whitfield, Winfree, Zbranek. The Bristow, Glass, Obie Jones, Laurel, Murray, McDonald, Seeligson, Sudderth. The rest voted aye. ‘Out of a Job’ Ehrle, who is from Childress AUSTIN With “taxes by ability to pay” Gov. Daniel’s banner for the charge, the liberalmoderate coalition in the House o f Representatives will bear down on the forces for “a broad-based tax” immediately after the Easter respite. Liberal leaders have assured Gov. Daniel they will support his program to retire the deficit and his natural gas tax and that they can provide him 45 votes but, they have warned him, he must get the rest. Motions are planned Tuesday or Wednesday to instruct Speaker Waggoner C a r r’s anti-Daniel revenue , and tax committee to report out the abandoned accounts bill and the business franchise tax increase one way or the other. Daniel said in a Thursday press conference t h at 80 members of the House have been counted in favor of this move. The state’s chief executive said that if the House does not bring his bills to floor vote in this manner, “the corporations have had a good year.” In his press conference, Daniel insisted on his deficit retiring program, on. his tax program for what he computes to be $44 million more money a year, and on the Hale-Aikin school program, including some part of the teachers’ pay raise. Hale-Aikin must wait until the deficit is retired and present obligations paid for, Daniel said, but he favors the enactment of all the recommendations this session except lengthening the school year, which he is against. On questioning he reminded reporters that in January he “suggested as a possible source” for financing the school improvements another one cent on the gasoline sales tax. “I am not now suggesting it again or recommending it at all,” he said, but only Missouri has a lower gasoline tax, and an increase would “not be reasonable.” Does he have other ideas for financing these improvements? \(He has been reported interested in other kinds of taxes on natural I do have some other ideas,” he said, declining then to become explicit. He was emphatic that the legislature should enact bills to add drivers’ education and pre-school training in English for non-English speaking students to the school curricula “at the earliest possible time.” Of the pre-school training bill, he said, “The cost of it is such that certainly it will be a saving to us and a great advantage to the children involved.” He said that frankly he was very happy the House appropriations committee proposed to make a start on the juvenile parole system for the state, “even with 15 parole officers,” but he hopes this number can be increased. Asked if he supports increasing college tuition to finance higher education, he said the proposal of the Commission on Higher Education sounds “very reasonable,” but he has not decided on his position. On the other hand, he added to his biennial budget recommendations for $6 million more library money and immediate faculty pay raises for the colleges, and $3 million for a longevity pay increase the House spending committee recommends for state employees. He said these items can be financed with the $10 million revenue surplus his January recommendations provided. `Arrogant’ In his Sunday broadcast, the Governor, castigating “arrogant” natural gas lobbyists, bankers, and oil lobbyists for opposing his program, said that ‘he had heard talk in the Capitol that some bankers who had extended loans to legislators would be asked to put on the pressure. Had this happened? He did not believe it would, he said, “now that it’s out in the open.” But, he added, “I did hear it, and very directly in some instances.” Daniel had come under attack from Reps. Roberts and Strickland, sponsors of legislation he calls camouflaged sales taxes. Roberts particularly accused him favoring a progressive personal income tax, “as this is the ultimate in ‘ability to pay’.” Daniel said everybody knows he’s against such a tax. He said, further, that public response to his Sunday broadcast is running 50-1 against a sales tax and “everybody seems to be against” an income tax. \(The ten letters quoted in his press release on this subject contained ten slams at a sales tax and one slam at an in`Ability to Pay In his reply to Roberts and Strickland, Daniel had written that he has endorsed the HaleAikin proposals and a d d e d, “There are plenty of other sources of funds available without placing the burden on the majority of the families of this state whose total earnings are less than $3,000 per year.” Asked at his press con Gonzalez Praises Daniel Program AUSTIN Sen. Henry Gonzalez, who ran a strenuous campaign against Gov. Price Daniel last summer, said to the Observer this week: “The fact is the Governor is the only person who has come forward with a practical and politically palatable program.” Gonzalez added that he had warned “from one end of the state to the other” that the state would be in the red and that his supporters should feel vindicated by present events. Russell’ Lee Photo A Patient in a Firetrap at Terrell, in Isolation for Her Protection Story and Mcire Pictures on Pages 6 and 7 House Gangs on Houston