FOR FIRE COMMISSIONER OF NEW YORK.
An insurance paper of New York city announces in its impression of December 3 that during the week preceding that date a “paper addressed to Mayor-Elect McLellan, of Greater New York, recommending the appointment of Mr. Edward F. Croker as fire commissioner, was circulated in the insurance for a brief period, with the result that it received the signatures of the officers and managers of practically every fire insurance organisation doing business in New York city, comprising over 150 different companies and associations, constituting nearly the entire membership of the New York board of fire underwriters.” The paper is headed with the signatures of several men and firms well known in Greater New York underwriting circles, followed by a long list of insurance officers.
The argument as to former Chief Croker’s reinstatement came up on Tuesday before the Appellate division of the Supreme court. James J. Delany, in behalf of the plaintiff, made six separate points as follows: (1) Denying the fire commissioner’s jurisdiction as an interested party in the case: (2) showing his error in not dismissing all the charges, these not being made in accordance with department rules: (3) error in not dismissing charges, because witnesses had not given full names and pedigrees, according to the rules; (4) showing biased judgment as to Park Avenue hotel fire, in considering the height of the building 126 feet, when it is only 103 feet to the fiat roof—being done to prove Chief Croker guilty of neglect of duty in not having observed the rule that buildings of over too feet in height must have standpipes: (5) blaming Chief Croker’s behavior at that fire, where the elements, not inefficiency on the chief’s part should have been blamed; (6) disregarding Chief Croker’s good record at other fires. Corporation Counsel Rives contended that everything had been done in accordance with the charter’s provisions; that the charges were sufficient to entail dismissal; and that the commissioner was the only competent person to pass upon Croker’s conduct and to dismiss him when found guilty. The court reserved decision. Several months may elapse before the result of the case will be known. There are four large printed volumes of testimony which, exclusive of briefs, make 2,071 printed pages.