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CHIEF EXAMINER AND SECRETARY.
MILWAUKEE, Wis., March 15, 1910.
To the Honorable the Board of City Serivce Commissioners:
GENTLEMEN I respectfully beg leave to submit to Your Honorable Body the Fifteenth Annual Report of this department for the fiscal year from January first to December thirty-first, 1909.
The City Service Commission during this year held twenty-seven competitive examinations and five non-competitive examinations for thirty-six different classes of the Official Service. Six hundred nineteen applicants were summoned by mail for competitive examination; four hundred thirty, or sixty-nine per cent. appeared; four hundred two, or ninety-three per cent. of those who appeared, finished the examination; two hundred sixty-seven passed the examination, which is equal to sixty-six per cent. of those who finished the examination.
The City Service Board held twelve regular and six special meetings.
Upon the expiration of his term of service, Commissioner Fred. A. Landeck, who also served as president of the Board from July first, 1908, to July first, 1909, retired. July last, His Honor, the mayor, , appointed William Gutenkunst for the term of four years. Commissioner Gutenkunst qualified in due time and took his seat at a special meeting of the Board held July 12, 1909.
Commissioner Landeck during his incumbency of office always worked energetically, impartially and honestly in the interest of Civil Service.
At a special meeting of the Board held on July 12, 1909, upon motion of Commissioner McIntyre, Commissioner August Dietrich was unanimously elected president of the Board, and John J. Vlach secretary and chief examiner for the ensuing year.
The following rules were adopted by the Board and duly approved by the Mayor :
Rule VII, Sec. 4.—No application for the position of bridge tender shall be received from any man who is less than thirty years nor more than fifty-five years of age.
Rule VII, Sec. 8.-Applicants for the positions of superintendent or assistant superintendent at natatoria must be married men.
As stated in last year's report, the City Service Board again made an attempt to have the Civil Service Law amended; but the state legislature did not deem it advisable to have the law revised. Yet, in spite of repeated failures in that respect, I would nevertheless most urgently recommend to the Commission to make another attempt to have the law remedied at the next session of the state legislature.
I am glad to be in position to report that in general the Merit System in the city of Milwaukee is a success, the unwarranted, unjustifiable abuses and condemnations of certain disgruntled politicians riotwithstanding. I humbly admit that every public official is but a public servant, and all his official acts are subject to review and criticism, but to hurl anathema, slurs and condemnation at him without any cause, warrant, justification or hearing, and many times in his absence, is in my judgment, to say the least, unjust and un-American.
All the departments of the city government have cheerfully and faithfully co-operated with the City Service Board, and I have tried my very best to carry out the spirit and the law of the Merit System.
It seems to me that the time will come when some form of a system of retiring allowance or pension for old civil service employes shall and must be adopted wherever civil service is or will be in operation. It would be only just and proper that a faithful public servant, who served the people creditably, faithfully, honestly and well for many years should in his old age receive reasonable allowance for the few remaining years of his life, and not to be exposed to penury and the poor house. The pension system of public servants is in successful operation in most of the European states, and in some few instances also in the United States, but in my judgment it should be universal.
As during previous years the Commission has practiced strict economy, and the expenses of the office have been kept well within the appropriation, as is shown by the following financial statement :
FINANCIAL STATEMENT FOR THE YEAR
From January 1, to December 31, 1909.
CITY CIVIL SERVICE FUND:
. $4,500.00 Total balance City Treasurer's office Dec. 31, 1908.. 768.31 DISBURSEMENTS:
Printing annual report...
94.78 121.79 125.00
2.00 12.00 35.00 101.00 3,447.26
STATISTICS OF APPLICANTS
January 1, 1909, to December 31, 1909, inclusive.
About 260 Foreign Born.