The New Jersey Convention.
The sixteenth annual convention of the New Jersey State Firemen’s Association will be held in Lambertville on Wednesday, September 27. Among the matters that will come up before the convention for discussion will be a scheme to empower local fire companies to use the money of their relief fund toward purchasing hose, apparatus and in other ways improving their departments.
This scheme will be bitterly opposed by the Newark delegates and all the members from the cities where the relief fund is the most important feature of the association. In the small villages and towns where the fund is seldom called upon, the fund increases from year to year, and becomes an object of envy to the officers and members, who would like to divert this money from the channels for which it was collected.
As it is now the law is very strict, and its requirements are that the funds shall only be used to assist disabled firemen who acquired their disability while in actual service. In many of the small towns throughout the States where fires occur only occasionally, and where they are of a small character, accidents very rarely occur, and the money accumulates and does no good whatever, according to the country firemen’s view. A majority of the country volunteer fire departments think, under such circumstances, a percentage of this money should be used to assist in equipping their departments, particularly in departments where the municipal authorities are not over generous in the support of the volunteer department.
No special arrangements are being made to entertain the delegates, but the local committee, of which Walter F. Hayhurst is chairman, has issued a general circular requesting all who propose to attend the convention to communicate with him at once, in order that the committee may insure comfortable hotel accommodations for all. The intention is to expedite the business of the convention rather than to give the delegates a picnic, although each of the local fire companies is making some preparation to entertain the visitors.