An organization to be called the "Reserve Association of America," governed by forty-five directors, which will gradually absorb the privilege of issuing currency until it becomes the executive agency for that purpose, and have other large powers, is the plan of currency reform devised by Senator Nelson W. Aldrich, chairman of the national monetary commission, as made public recently for the first time. Features of the plan are: The authorized capital of the reserve association shall be approximately three hundred million dollars; its charter shall continue in force fifty years and the head office shall be Washington, D. C. ; the country shall be divided into fifteen districts and a branch of the reserve association shall be in each district; the reserve association and its branches shall be exempt from state and local taxation, except in respect to taxes upon real estate owned by it. Three important features are : The Government of the United States and national banks owning stock in the reserve association shall be the sole depositors in the reserve association ; the Government of the United States shall deposit its cash balance with the reserve association ; the reserve association shall pay no interest on deposits.

Herbert Knox Smith, commissioner of corporations, in a report just issued, says: "The bureau of corporations ever since its creation has urged a broad federal system of corporate publicity, which shall give the public plainly the essential facts of our great business. The bureau itself has been steadily applying such publicity to interstate business though necessarily covering only a few corporations. If that work has given substantial benefit to the public and business, it has proved the case for a broader system. For the last seven years, with a staff of specially trained men, the bureau has collected complete information about certain selected corporations or industries; has stated plainly the meaning thereof, and published it in reports. This publicity has given surprising results for the limited number of industries and corporations which the bureau could cover with its small appropriation and is the best argument for corporate publicity."

Work in draining the Everglades of Florida has been carried on for four years by the state and about fifteen thousand acres have thus far been reclaimed. This reclaimed land is very fertile and is sold to corporations in large tracts at twenty dollars per acre. Over twelve thousand acres of it are now under cultivation. The entire section is at such an elevation that drainage can ultimately recover four million acres, more than five thousand square miles, an area more than half the size of Massachusetts. The productive soil lying upon a substratum of coraline limestone overlaid with sand and alluvial deposits, is from four to ten feet in depth, being formed of decayed vegetable matter. A complete drainage system will require about six hundred miles of outlet channels.

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January 28, 1911

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