N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 485

Thursday, July 24, 1947 (Afternoon session)

MR. REINERS: All I have to say is this, - that we have solicited from our bar of approximately 373 members, suggestions and comments for the guidance of our committee. We received from the members of the bar several letters and comments and telephone calls which were of great help to us. I can say that there was absolute unanimity in the opinion of the bar of Camden County that they want and hope you gentlemen will say the same thing, the continuance of the present system of the Court of Chancery.

Thank you for the opportunity of being here.

VICE-CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, Mr. Reiners...

We will now hear Mr. Talley of the Union County Bar Association.

MR. FAYETTE N. TALLEY: I arrived in time, gentlemen, to hear something of the statements just made, and I can tell you now I'm not going to qualify as an expert, as the last witness did. We in Union County apparently didn't start early enough in our efforts to crystalize opinions, so that I am here as a spokesman for the Association in an attempt to tell you what a few of the members think about a proposed new court system.

The letter from the Secretary of your Committee went the rounds before it reached me. I knew from experience that a special meeting of the Association would be so sparsely attended that I wouldn't attempt to get a well formulated opinion from that. So the officers of the Association decided to mail out questionnaires, thinking that we would get more replies and have a better idea of how some of the members thought about some of these controversial questions. We have 319 members in the Union County Bar Association and a questionnaire was mailed to each member. I regret to state that we received only 63 replies. About 20 per cent of the membership responded. What I'm about to say doesn't, therefore, yet represent the majority thinking, although it does represent a majority opinion of those who were sufficiently interested to reply.

There have been questions, according to the press, which have arisen since this questionnaire was formulated. These questions were not included in the questionnaire, so that I don't feel competent to speak for the Association on any of those questions.

I think, perhaps, the best way of covering the subject, if the Committee agrees, is to read the questions, since there are not many of them, and give you the breakdown of the answers that we have received. We will at once see that even those who replied are by no means unanimous, and I don't think that what I am about to tell you is going to be of much value or help to you in trying to formulate any plan.

The first question is, "Are you in favor of a small court of appeals which is to be an appellate tribunal of last resort?" The answers

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