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2. That these roads are being built at a cost commensurate with prevailing economic conditions.
3. That all motor license fees are being and will be utilized as fast as received for the building of roads and the retiring of bonds, and that the State bonds are being issued only as needed for actual construction.
4. That at the present rate of progress, Illinois will have completed 3,600 to :3,800 miles of the Bond Issue system, leaving approximately 1,200 to 1,000 miles which will not be completed by the end of the year 1924, and that by that date all the funds made available under the present laws will have been exhausted.
5. That it becomes necessary at this session of the General Assembly to outline plans and pass legislation for the further financing of the Illinois road work after that date if the work is to go on without cessation.
6. That this can probably best be done by passing at this session a law calling for a bond issue to be voted by the people in November, 1924, said bond issue, principal and interest, to be financed entirely by motor license fees without direct taxation. This bond issue should provide for the completion of the present State Bond Issue Road system and for the construction of perhaps 2,500 to 3,000 of additional State roads, making a total of seven or eight thousand miles of trunk line roads.
7. The estimated license fees will provide adequate funds to retire the present bond issue and the proposed bond issue, if not to exceed $100,000,000, and leave several million dollars annually for the maintenance of the roads constructed.
8. That no further increase in the weight of motor trucks on the public highways be permitted.
9. That the policing of the State highways and the enforcing of the highway laws be vested in a State Highway Police Force.
10. That the State be empowered to maintain all hard surface roads built by the State, including those lying within the corporate mits cities and villages.
S 11. That the State be empowered to select and mark routes through all cities and villages of the State necessary to connect the State Highway system,
12. That the laws now in force which have greatly increased the quality and serviceability of our county and township roads be conserved and strengthened.
The transportation problem, which has become a serious one, both to the farmer and to industry in Illinois, as well as in the Nation, demands our earnest consideration.
High freight rates are resulting not only in a tax that reduces revenue to producers and increases cost to consumers, but the inability to handle products of the farm is resulting in waste and loss, while industry in our State has difficulty in competing with many more favored localities.
The great strides in the construction of better highways is giving some relief from traffic congestion and high rates, but the State has another valuable undeveloped resource in its opportunity for water transportation. If our natural resources in this respect are wisely developed, Illinois will have in its system of railroads, highways and waterways unexcelled means of transportation.
The key to this great waterway development is the Illinois River. The first explorers recognized the feasibility of this plan and the improvement of this river was advocated by the first Governor of Illinois and has received study and attention from the succeeding administrations.
The construction of the Panaina Canal has given the Eastern seaboard a great advantage over the Middle West in trade with the Pacific Coast points and the Orient with resultant detriment to industry in Illinois.
The experimental barge line placed in service on the lower Mississippi by the Federal Government is handling freight in conjunction with railroads, and although this line only reaches the southern border of the State, it is forwarding Illinois export grain at a material saving in freight charges.
It is believed that with direct water navigation and transportation from the Lakes to the Gulf, the farmers of Illinois will receive from 3 to 6 cents a bushel more for their grain, and industry in Illinois will be re-established on a fair competitive basis.
Railroad cars and equipment, to a considerable extent, will be released for service in other parts of the State and Nation where water routes cannot serve.
I believe the advantages to the State are such as to justify as rapid progress and completion of the work as possible. The first real work on the Illinois Waterway has been accomplished during the past two years by the construction of the first great lock located near Marseilles, which is nearly completed.
Two years ago, the estimates of the engineers for the completion of the Illinois Waterway were $30,000,000. With one lock completed, it is now believed that the waterway can be finished, except for power plants, for the $19,000,000 now remaining in the Waterway Bond Fund.
I, therefore, recommend the reappropriation of the $19,000,000 remaining of the $20,000,000 bond issue authorized in 1908.
I further recommend that the General Assembly memorialize Congress to proceed with the improvement of the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers from Ulica to Cairo, so as to provide a nine foot channel for navigation, and at the same time to consider such remedial work as may be necessary in connection with change of location, strengthening or raising of levees on the Illinois River to protect the people of the State along that river from damage from flood, as is done in connection with the Mississippi River under Federal Government supervision,
BIG MUDDY RIVER SURVEY,
The Fifty-second General Assembly provided an appropriation to conplete a field survey of the Big Muddy River penetrating the great coal fields of Southern Illinois and to report upon the availability of the river for navigation and the cost of its improvement. This survey has been made and the report will soon be submitted to your Honorable Body.
It is entirely probable that there are other rivers in the State which can be connected with the Waterways when completed and of which it might be advisable to make surveys.
ILLINOIS STATE PARKS.
The Division of Parks, during the past year, has made rapid progress in placing Illinois in the position where it belongs as one of the leading states in the Union in the conservation for the benefit of the people of areas of land which are noted for beauty of scenery or historic interest. Many such places have already been taken over by the State and no effort is being spared to preserve them in their original grandeur.
The historic spots and parks now under the supervision of the Department of Public Works and Buildings are: Lincoln Monument, Lincoln Homestead, Vandalia Court House, Douglas Monument, Fort Massac, Fort Chartres, Old Salem Park, Starved Rock Park, Fort Creve Coeur and Metamora Court House.
The rapid extension of the State's hard road system is making the State parks more popular year by year, giving opportunity as it does to citizens in every section of the State to visit the different scenes of historic interest. Because of this fact, improvement work on the different parks is being pushed as rapidly as possible, and special arrangements are being made at all points for the convenience of tourists, especially those who make the trip by motor.
The motor tourist camp at Starved Rock is declared by interstate tourists to be one of the best equipped and most conveniently arranged in the Middle West. On Labor Day, 1922, more than 3,000 motor cars were parked in and around this camp. Work is already under way to make this site a perfect one for campers. Plans have been approved for a large sheiter house which will include rest rooms, shower baths, wash rooms and flush toilets. An artesian well 900 feet deep provides the park with pure water and it is sufficient in quantity to enable the department to pipe it to the camp ground.
It may be interesting to note that the receipts from the concessions at Starved Rock Park approximately equal the cost of maintenance.
Old Fort Chartres, long neglected and unsurpassed in historic associations, is being restored.
At Old Salem park plans for the restoration of the city as it existed during Lincoin's residence there in 1831, are nearing completion. A contract now under consideration contemplates the restoration of each log cabin at no cost to the State. When this project is completed it will be the only abandoned city in the world that has been restored in its entirety.
During the past biennium the administration has added by purchase one hundred and fifty acres to Fort Massac Park, which spot is of historical interest, the one time headquarters of George Rogers Clark, the noted explorer. Work has already been begun toward beautifying the new addition.
All other parks and sites of historical interest have been given special attention, and are maintained in good repair.
Illinois parks are not surpassed by those of any other state, and the program mapped out gives promise of greater developments. The State park movement is well started, and the conservation of natural beauty spots and sites of historic interest is appealing strongly to the patriotic people of Illinois and all lovers of nature.
THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WELFARE.
During the past few months, I have visited each of the 26 charitable, penal, correctional and educational institutions of the State, and inspected all buildings in the course of construction. It has been my aim that these institutions be conducted with the greatest possible economy consistent with the best results, keeping in mind at all times the comfort and proper treatment of the State's unfortunates.
On December 1, 1922, there were present in the various State institutions, including patients, pupils, inmates and employees, 33,813 persons
Notwithstanding the increase in population, approximating three thousand, the increase in prices of some of the essential commodities, such as fuel, and the continued high prices of groceries, we have been able to operate the institutions of the State within the appropriation made by the Fifty-second General Assembly, and will turn back to the Treasurer an unexpended balance.
Although the population of the various institutions continues to increase, by the introduction of further economies, which the past two years' experience has taught, we will be able to carry on successfully the splendid work now being done without added burden to the taxpayers of the State. The budget for the Department of Public Welfare for the ensuing biennium will not exceed the appropriation of two years ago.
INTENSIVE FARMING AND BUSINESS METHODS.
In this accomplishment, we have been favored by Providence with an abundant harvest. The 12,000 acres of farm land under control of this department have yielded greatly in excess of other years through methods of intensive farming that have been introduced.
Over 1,500 dairy cows are maintained on these farms, and in 1922 between four and five thousand hogs were fattened and slaughtered.
The truck and fruit gardens on the State farms produced last year about 250,000 bushels of fruit and vegetables, which is a very large increase over any previous year. This not only helped to reduce the cost of maintenance, but contributed to palatable and healthful variations in the food furnished. A portion of these products are conserved for out of season use by canning, drying and other processes which effects a still greater saving. These activities are capable of still further extension both as an economic investment and for their therapeutic value to the inmate.
Economies have been introduced in the housekeeping of the various institutions, and these institutions have been able to feed the wards of the State at reduced cost, at the same time furnishing them with abundance of wellbalanced food. Pure, whole milk has been one of the principal dietetic advantages given particularly in the homes and schools which house the younger population. The reports show that there has been a marked increase in the average weight of all of the wards of the State.
For the first time the dairy herds of the State institutions are practically free from tuberculosis. In the first test made in the summer of 1921, of the 1,872 cattle tested, 449 were found to be reactors; the next test in May 1922 showed 145 reactors, and the third test, the latter part of October, 1922, developed 105 reactors, making a total of 699 tubercular animals, which have been disposed of according to law. We have been able to replace the infected stock at cost well within the appropriation made by the Fifty-second General Assembly for that purpose. In doing so, better standards of breeding have been introduced.
ECONOMY IN BUYING FUCL.
During the past year, bids for contracts for coal on an annual basis were called for The prices, revealed by these bids, were far in excess of the dictates of economical administration. Taking advantage of a break in market price, all of the bids were rejected and new contracts were made for immediate delivery at greatly reducd cost.
I have cited these instances that you may understand the endeavor that is being made to conduct the affairs of the State on sound business principles.
APPLICATION OF SCIENTIFIC TREATMENT.
The rigid economies which have been introduced, however, have not been permitted to interfere with the scientific treatment of the wards of the State, nor with the application of the most advanced and accepted methods of treatment of the patients, nor with the instruction of pupils in the various schools. Our careful solicitude has been given to this feature of the work by the introduction in the hospitals of X-ray therapy; in the School for the Deal by instruction in voice, and in the School for the Blind in the conservation of vision; while, in such institutions as are provided with libraries, the inmates, patients and pupils are given the greatest freedom of use consistent with discipline and proper management.
BUILDING PROGRAM EXPEDITED.
The building program has been conducted under adverse conditions. Materials and labor are but slightly reduced from wartime prices. Wherever possible, the State has used materials at its own command, such as washed gravel and sand taken from the State property. Every economy, consistent with good construction, has been practiced; thus we have been enabled to keep within the appropriations. In the construction of buildings devoted to World-War Veterans at the Elgin State Hospital, the State has set a new record in the element of time. Never before has housing construction of equal magnitude at the State institutions been so expeditiously and thoroughly conducted.
TIIE NEW PRISOY AT LOCKPORT.
The construction work on the new prison at Lockport has made greater progress during the past two years than since the creation of the commission in the year 1908. About eight hundred prisoner laborers have been transferred and are now being housed and maintained at the new prison, and are engaged on the construction work.
Since July 1, 1921, when the appropriation made by the Fifty-second General Assembly became available, the re-enforced concrete enclosing wall 114 miles in length, 33 feet in height, with foundations extending from 10 to 30 feet below grade have been completed. It encloses 64 acres, said to be the largest prison yard in the United States. The wagon lock and railroad gate, yard towers, permanent railroad track leading to the prison and connected with the temporary construction track have been finished and are in operation.
The cold storage and supply warehouse building with refrigerating equipment installed; the permanent power house building, including the basement of 1,860 lineal feet of connecting corridors, in which are being placed steam pipes and electric wire cables, have been built, while 360 feet of additional corridors will be finished by March 1, 1923. The roof is being placed on the third cell house, which is nearing completion. A portion of the administration building, the psychiatric and classification building, the kitchen, the large dining room, the laundry and the bakery, will all be under roof in a short time. Work has started on a warehouse or factory building with ground dimensions of 125 feet by 250 feet.
The entire system of trunk line sewers, both storm and sanitary, with sewage purification plant and filter beds connected with each building, has been installed and is in operation. Water mains, connecting with 100,000 gallon tower tank, have been extended to the buildings erected. Steam mains and return pipers are being installed. I mention these matters in detail that you may have a better conception of the work that has been done.
The Penitentiary Commission and the Department of Public Welfare have agreed upon a program of construction for the next biennium, which, it is expected, will make possible the transfer of the entire men's prison to the new institution.
CROWDED CONDITIONS RELIEVED.
The crowded condition of a number of the institutions has been relieved. After two years of constant effort, we can at last report that, for the first time in years, there is a comfortable bed for every inmate in the State institutions. This has been accomplished in spite of the continually increasing population. The condition at the Lincoln State School and Colony, where there has been a long waiting list, has also been relieved. For the first time in 15 years, those committed to that institution are being promptly received. This has been brought about by the construction of cottages and dormitories at the Dixon State Colony to which a large number of wards have been transferred.
DEATII RUTE DECREASED.
The mortuary statistics of the various institutions show a decided de crease in the number of deaths. This is particularly marked in the cases of violent deaths by accident or from other unforeseen and untoward causes.
CRIMINOLOGY AND INSTITUTT FOR JUVENILE RESEARC1I.
The application of mental measurements to the institutional population of the penal and correctional groups has been extended, and, as a result, the first comprehensive data on the mentality of the criminal and juvenile delinquent within our institutions has been made available in the scientific re.