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Fight To Keep Brooklyn Navy Yard Open

June 12, 1964 - Borough President Abe Stark (right) led a parade through downtown Brooklyn today in support of the campaign to get more work for the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Later, at a noontime ceremony on the steps of Borough Hall, letters and petitions with 250,000 signatures were dispatched to President Johnson, calling on him to investigate the 10,000-man Brooklyn Yard’s loss of contracts, which union officials say has cost 800 jobs in five months and may cost 5,000 more by 1965.

Businesses, including department stores and banks, have been gathering signatures since May in an effort to get one million names behind the campaign to force a reversal of the Defense Department’s policy of gradually reducing work at the Brooklyn yard.

Mr. Stark said the Brooklyn yard was suffering unfairly because Government contracts were being awarded to overworked private shipyards in the South.

After the ceremonies, Assemblyman George Cincotta of the 11th District in Kings County charged a conflict of interest in the awarding of contracts to the Newport News Shipyard headed by Arleigh Burke, former chief of Naval Operations. Mr. Cincotta said that companies headed by Mr. Burke had gained $120 million in Government contracts since his retirement from the Navy.

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