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Mr. HALL. Mr. A. J. Sarré, who has been director of employee management since the Federal Works Agency was established.
General FLEMING. He was called director of personnel, and then they changed the title.
EMPLOYMENT OF RACIAL-RELATIONS PERSONNEL
Mr. STARNES. Following that up, I notice you have a racial-relations officer at $5,600, and a clerk-stenographer at $2,040. Now, for the life of me, I cannot understand why it is necessary for this agency to have such an officer, other than that you are either setting the pattern or following the pattern as a copycat of some of what I call the hybrid or illicit, certainly unnecessary, set-ups that we have fostered under the guise of this war effort, in having this Fair Employment Practices Committee and some other committees that have no legal sanction insofar as Congress is concerned and have no power to enforce any recommendation or any suggestion they might make, except the power of inuendo and threat of Government denial of war contracts to concerns investigated unless they follow the suggestions of the Fair Labor Practices Committee.
Now, what is the justification of having inside a Federal agency a $5,600 job and a $2,040 job of clerk-stenographer to handle racial relations?' I would like to know what the justification is; just the common-sense justification.
Mr. Hall. We will include the statement previously requested. May I answer that specific question off the record ?
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. Yes.
RECAPITULATION OF FEDERAL WORKS ADMINISTRATION PROGRAM
Mr. DIRKSEN. General, I just want to get a sort of recapitulation of this administrative situation. I will just refer to the chart that is carried in your justification. I presume the program and project review board will be liquidated, since it is in dotted lines; is that right?
General FLEMING. No; that board is composed of staff officers and the heads of the constituent administrations of the Federal Works Agency, and reviews Lanham Act projects, Public Roads projects, and serves as a policy board.
Mr. DIRKSEN. Now, referring to the chart again, at the bottom there is “Administration of war public works, community facilities," and "Administration of war public services, maintenance, and operation of service projects.” What about those two items!
General FLEMING. Those are Lanham Act activities.
Mr. DIRKSEN. And I assume, as time goes on, those will wind up, won't they, in the very nature of things?
General FLEMING. I imagine that all during the war we will continue on those. They will wind up when the war is over.
Mr. Dirksen. Now, if your liquidation proceeds on the expected timetable, W. P. A. will go out as a functional agency, and so will P. W. A.?
General FLEMING. That is correct.
Mr. DIRKSEN. That will leave you with just two basic functions then, namely, Public Roads and the Public Buildings Administrations?
General FLEMING. That is right.
Mr. DIRKSEN. Now, in the light of that reduction, there will be no personnel reduction in these various functions so far, such as the Office of Chief Engineer, Office of General Counsel, Office of Investigation, Office of Executive Officer, Office of Information, and Office of Employee Management Relations.
General FLEMING. I think when the war is over
Mr. Hall. This budget was presented to the Budget Bureau and our entire discussions were on the basis of an Administrator's office with the two basic constituent units, Roads and Buildings. Mr. DIRKSEN. It was set up for that purpose ?
COMPARATIVE STATEMENT OF ADMINISTRATION COSTS OF EXECUTIVE
DEPARTMENTS AND INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS
Mr. Hall. It was set up for that purpose. Mr. Chairman, it seems
to me it might be of interest to the committee if we could present like to you a comparative statement of the functions of the office of the
Administrator of Federal Works, the personnel and the cost, and the similar functions carried on by other executive departments and independent establishments and their functions and the cost. Mr. WOODRUM. All right.
Mr. HALL. Very frankly, we have gone into that to a considerable ale extent and I completely agree in principle with your idea that con
solidations usually are expensive. This consolidation was madeGeneral Fleming had nothing to do with it; the Reorganization Act set up the Federal Works Agency. We are operating it in an efi
cient manner and, taking it function by function, comparing Federal i Works Agency and the other independent establishments or Federal
agencies, I think you will find the administrative cost is below that of any other department. Mr. WOODRUM. Will you give us that for the record ? Mr. Hall. I would like very much to give you that for the record.
The data shown above are taken from the Budget of the United States Government for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1944. The lack of uniformity of the several administrative organizations and the fact that in some cases there is no clear differentiation between administrative and operating expenditures justifies only a general comparison. However, it is quite obvious that the estimates for the Federal Works Agency are not only the lowest in positions and money but they are also considerably lower than the average.
No data are included for the War and Navy Departments because they are not shown in the Budget. The estimates for the state Department are not shown on a comparable basis and have been omitted.
CHANGES OF LANGUAGE
Mr. WOODRUM. Now, General, I would like to ask you just a question or two about this new language at the bottom of page 99 of the committee print:
Provided, That the Administrator may, with the approval of the Director of the Bureau of the Budget, transfer to this appropriation or to an appropriation of a constituent unit from funds available for administrative expenses of the constituent units and the Office of the Administrator of the Federal Works Agency such additional sums as represent a consolidation in the Office of the Administrator or in a constituent unit of any of the administrative functions of the Federal Works Agency.
That seems to me to be very much broader language than the language which is bracketed out. What is the reason for that and what do you expect to do, under that, that you have not been doing?
Mr. HALL. Instead of making consolidations in the office of Administrator and building up a large organization there, we are turning over to the constituent units the service functions they are best qualified to perform to serve all of the constituent administrations and the Administrator's office, and this language would permit that to be done under the law instead of by agree nent.
In other words, the supply functions of the Federal Works Administration have been turned over to the Public Roads Administration, which has an adequately established supply organization here in Washington. They will handle all of the functions of supply for the cffice of the Administrator, for Public Buildings, Public Roads, and War Public Services, as well as for W. P. A. and P. W. A. until they are liquidated.
The blueprinting operation of the Federal Works is turned over to the Public Buildings Administration. They have a large blueprinting plant and can do that work for the whole organization. All of the multilith and reproduction services are also being turned over to the Public Buildings Administration, to be handled on a reimbursable basis, and they will charge to the other agency the actual cost of doing that work. The language heretofore permitted this consolidation only in the office of the Administrator.
This was our approach: We do not want these services consolidated in the office of the Administrator; we want to keep it an administrative office, putting the operating services in the constituent operating administrations, so that they can perform these services for the other constituent units and the office.
Mr. WOODRUM. What about this additional language: Provided further, That the Federal Works Administrator may, under such rules and regulations as he shall prescribe, authorize the Commissioner of Public Roads and the Commissioner of Public Buildings to make appointment of personnel for such administrations? What is the reason or necessity for that?
Mr. HALL. The present basic legislation permits the delegation of authority to Commissioners for field appointment. The Comptroller Genera! has ruled that the Administrator may not delegate authority to Commissioners to make departmental appointments. That means that all of the departmental appointments made by the Public Buildings Administration, which run to 12,000 or 13,000, have to be made by the Administrator.
General FLEMING. For instance, the P. B. A. cannot appoint a charwoman without me signing my name to a paper. I mean I take the recommendation of Mr. Reynolds and sign my name perfunctorily.
Mr. WOODRUM. This is to avoid some routine red tape?
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. But referring to the first part of that language, does not that practically give you blanket authority to transfer funds from the Administrator's office to either of the agencies, and vice versa, and regardless of whether there is a saving from the consolidation in question?
Mr. Hall. Definitely. That question of savings is a misnomer. Most of these consolidations that are supposed to be made have not been made with savings, and it is a mistake to ask us for, or to insist on, a statement of personnel savings when we consolidate essential services. I believe in these cases the responsibility for operating will be on Public Roads or Public Buildings and if they do not operate efficiently the other agency is not going to have them render the service. But to attempt to say there is a saving and to set up certain positions that are canceled thereby, is neither fair to us nor to the Congress; because you just require a statement of facts that does not always exist.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. The fundamental theory of this set-up was in order to effect savings; was it not?
Mr. HALL. That was the legislation last year; that the consolidation had to show savings. Oftentimes a consolidation which will result in much more efficient operation may not show an actual saving in personnel. It will show a saving in the unit cost of the over-all operation, but may not show a saving in personnel. These are service functions that these constitutent agencies will perform for each other and for the office of administrator.
Mr. WOODRUM. If there is nothing else, General Fleming, we thank you.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 14, 1943.
PUBLIC BUILDINGS ADMINISTRATION
STATEMENTS OF W. E. REYNOLDS, COMMISSIONER; E. R. WITMAN, FISCAL MANAGER; H. L. MCLEOD, BUDGET OFFICER; C. J. GUTHRIDGE, CHIEF, PLANING AND SPACE CONTROL; C. A. PETERS, BUILDINGS MANAGER; AND R. O. JENNINGS, ASSISTANT BUILDINGS MANAGER
Mr. WOOODRUM. We will take up now the Public Buildings Administration. Mr. Reynolds, do you have a brief statement you want to make?
Mr. REYNOLDS. I would like to make a statement, Mr. Chairman, which I think it will move forward the hearing, because it is a general statement as to what our problem is.
Mr. WOODRUM. All right, sir, we will be glad to have it.
Mr. REYNOLDS. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, contrary to our usual procedure in appearing before this committee, I think it would be well, due to wartime conditions, that I give you a brief résumé of the various activities of the Public Buildings Administration. Its construction activities, as related to peacetime construction, have been drastically curtailed for the duration of the war, and unexpended funds provided in appropriations for this purpose have been impounded by the Bureau of the Budget and reserved either for savings or for obligation in future years. The amount of appropriations thus impounded totals $54,393,927. Present construction activities are confined primarily to the war program.
As of January 1, 1942, there was available approximately $140,000,000 for a variety of construction programs. By July 1, 1942, this amount had been reduced to approximately $106,000,000. A major portion of the reduction was due to the transfer of approximately $25,000,000 of National Defense Housing projects to the National Housing Agency under Executive Order No. 9070, dated February 26, 1942. As of December 31, 1942, the dollar value of the work load before the office was $73,000,000 which includes new work added from time to time during the calendar year. This item includes repair and preservation of Federal buildings, War Public Works under the Lanham Act such as schools, hospitals, etc., miscellaneous construction of the type of temporary office buildings, dormitories for women, completion of some defense housing projects, the emergency protection of Federal buildings, and the decentralization program.
On January 1, 1942, all operations of the Public Buildings Administration, other than the office of the Buildings Manager, had a total of 2,345 employees with annual salaries amounting to $6,319,000. By December 31, 1942, the personnel had been reduced to 1,448 employees with an annual pay roll of approximately $3,900,000.
For purposes of clarity, the observations that I am now making do not cover the appropriations heretofore made available for the maintenance and operation of public buildings. The operations of that particular branch of the office are so extensive that they will be covered by a separate statement.
The Public Buildings Administration has been carrying on two interesting programs created by the war effort, namely, decentralization and emergency safeguarding of public buildings. Under the decentralization program there has been acquired 4,378,128 square feet of office space in 17 cities. In addition thereto, space for small units was obtained by the using agency in 35 additional cities. This permitted the moving from Washington of 32,896 employee stations in 35 governmental agencies. About 40 percent of the people involved chose to take other positions in the Government service. This activity has assisted materially in reducing congestion within the District of Columbia and has made available to necessary war agencies vital space required for their personnel. Of the total space acquired, all is under rental except one building in Chicago, having a total area of 257.380 square feet, purchased for the Railroad Retirement and one building in Asheville, with a total of 163,500 square feet, for the General Accounting Office. The average rental cost amounts to $1.40