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earned departmental status to one of the most useful agencies of this Government-the Federal Security Agency. We are for it because we believe it will contribute to the health and well-being of every citizen-veteran and nonveteran alike; of every man, woman, and child, in the United States.
It is important to make this last point clear. As veterans, we are, of course, concerned with the interests of the veteran. But we are concerned with them not in the sense of advocating special privileges, or on considering proposed legislation from the narrow point of view of "What's in it for us?" We have a firm conviction that anything which is for the good of the country as a whole is good for the veteran; that the veteran prospers as the country prospers; and that the best service that we can render our country is to pitch in to make democracy work on the broadest possible basis.
We in AVC believe that the veteran should serve his country in peacetime as he did in war, that he serves his country by working for the welfare of all citizens. We feel strongly that a Department of Health, Education, and Security will serve the welfare of all citizens. That is why we are for Reorganization Plan No. 27.
One of the most important tasks that faces America in this time of international crisis is to raise the standards of performance of our democracy. By raising the Federal Security Agency to cabinet rank, we will raise the standards of performance of our democracy in the important fields of health, education, and security. It is in these fields that the standards of performance should be highest. It is in these fields that our stake in the future is greatest.
As you know, the American Veterans Committee has looked with favor on the proposals of the Hoover Commission for reorganization of the Veterans' Administration. One of those proposals calls for the creation of a United Medical Administration. As a result of the hostile opposition to that proposal both from within the Government and from private agencies particularly from other veterans' organizations-we see no chance of its early approval. However, as the President said:
The adoption of this plan will not in any way interfere with further adjustments in the functions of the new Department either by statute or reorganization plan. We do not believe that approval or disapproval of the various plans for reorganization of the executive branch of the Federal Government should rest on identity with the last period or comma of what the Hoover Commission recommended. The proposals of the Hoover Commission should serve as guides, but they should not be regarded in a doctrinaire way as perfect.
Just as the Hoover Commission proposals represent great improvements over the existing governmental structure, surely additional study may show the way to even greater improvements.
Each reorganization plan should be measured against the over-all objective of the Hoover Commission recommendations; greater standards of efficiency and economy in government service. We have examined Reorganization Plan No. 27 and believe that it measures up to that objective.
One thing more: The great majority of veterans have families. Most of us, I think, are more concerned in seeing that our children get an even break than we are in fighting over the bloody battles of
the last war. For myself, I want my children to grow up as citizens of a nation which accords at least the same prestige to education that it does to the raising of pigs and the harvesting of wheat; that accords the same prestige to health that it does to the extracting of minerals from the earth and the harnessing of water power; that accords the same prestige to social and economic security that it does to the administration of our post offices.
As an important step toward a more responsible democracy, AVC strongly urges the approval of Reorganization Plan No. 27.
The CHAIRMAN. Would you favor a plan which would advance the Social Security Division of the Federal Security Agency to a departmental status without including the Public Health Service in the new Department?
Mr. PAKISER. I cannot say whether we would, or not, because it would have to be referred to our national convention, which will be held in 1951, or to our national planning committee. They can take a position on that.
The CHAIRMAN. Would you oppose a plan to advance the Public Health Service to a departmental status in itself?
Mr. PAKISER. We have no position on that, and I do not know whether we would oppose it or not.
We have this convention position which I have quoted here, and we also have approved in a generalized manner the Hoover Commission recommendations for reorganizing the Veterans' Administration.
However, we do not regard our support of the Hoover Commission recommendations as absolute and doctrinaire. We measure those proposals and how we feel about them in the over-all context of the entire reorganization of the Federal Government and against our platform position, and we would have no position until our convention. The CHAIRMAN. You made reference in your prepared statement to economy.
Mr. PAKISER. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Would you point out to this committee wherein there is economy in this plan?
Mr. PAKISER. The economy that would be achieved would be the responsibility of the Secretary. Under section 6 of the plan that was submitted by the President, there is a provision for administrative services and a provision for centralizing the administrative services in the fields of procurement, budgeting, accounting, library, and so forth. If the Secretary who was appointed properly performed his duties through that section of the reorganization plan, he should be able to achieve economies. If he doesn't do his job properly he may not do so.
I think it is also the job of the congressional committees to keep an eye on the new Secretary in the new Department, if it is created, as we hope it will be created, to make sure that the Secretary does act under this section 6 through consolidating and centralizing those administrative services to achieve economy.
The CHAIRMAN. What you have said about economy, as applied to this new Department, is applicable today to every department and agency in Government, is it not?
Mr. PAKISER. I believe it is, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Then this plan would not change anything except as you say, that it simply depends upon the individual who may head it. The plan itself creates no economy.
Mr. PAKISER. The plan itself does not create economy, but under section 6, this committee and the Senate would take a strong position, I think, in favor of that central administrative service, which would enable the achievement of economy. And, of course, the plan in itself would not assure any savings of money. The President said so himself.
The CHAIRMAN. Yes. I just want to clarify that economy because we have rather diligently inquired into the possibilities of economy as these plans, not only this one but others, have been presented to us. We are finding it very difficult to ever put a finger on a dollar that we know will be saved by the plan.
There may have been one or two exceptions, but generally we find no definite, identifiable economy in the plan. So when you referred to economy, I thought I would inquire about it.
Do you have any questions, Senator Mundt?
The CHAIRMAN. Senator Smith?
The CHAIRMAN. Senator Schoeppel?
Senator SCHOEPPEL. No questions.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much, sir.
STATEMENT OF MRS. BEN B. BAYLOR, JR., STATE EDUCATION CHAIRMAN, MARYLAND DIVISION, AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF UNIVERSITY WOMEN, AND MEMBER OF THE SCHOOL BOARD, MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MD.
The CHAIRMAN. Mrs. Baylor, will you first identify yourself? I see that you are accompanied by another lady. Will you identify her, too, please?
Mrs. BAYLOR. I am Mrs. Ben B. Baylor, Jr., of Bethesda, Md. This is Miss Marjorie Temple, of Washington, D. C., our legislative program associate, American Association of University Women.
I am speaking for the national education committee of the American Association of University Women. I am the State education chairman of the Maryland division of the American Association of University Women, and a member of the School Board of Montgomery County, Md.
Since 1927 the American Association of University Women has been very much concerned with the need to strengthen the status of the United States Office of Education. In 1949 the national convention again voted to include in the association's legislative program an item pledging support of "measures to strengthen the status of the United States Office of Education."
The National Education Committee of the American Association of University Women is opposing President Truman's Reorganization Plan No. 27 because it is the considered opinion of this committee that the cause of education is not strengthened by placing the United States Office of Education in an administrative set-up alongside other very much larger services, and, more especially, in an agency whose chief concern is social security.
Our committee believes that the cause of education is endangered when vital administrative decisions, affecting the Office of Education, are made by the administrator of a large agency who might be a partisan politician not conversant with educational matters, and who must necessarily give his major attention to the dominant interests in the proposed Department-health and social security-rather than to education.
The National Education Committee of the American Association of University Women has observed a definite weakening in the status of the Office of Education during recent years. There have been budget diversions and reductions; and library service, publication services, and even office space for the professional staff have been materially curtailed, resulting in decreased efficiency and in frustration and dissatisfaction for the personnel.
President Truman, in presenting Reorganization Plan No. 27, stated that under this plan the Commissioner of Education would retain the statutory authority and duties now vested in him. The education committee of the American Association of University Women does not believe the Commissioner can fully exercise the statutory duties now assigned to him so long as his office is part of a larger agency concerned primarily with noneducational matters.
So long as Reorganization Plan No. 27 gives the Secretary authority to integrate in his own office "central administrative services in the fields of procurement, budgeting, accounting, library, legal, and other services and activities common to the several agencies of the Department," education will continue to be subordinated to the interests of health and welfare.
The President also assured the Commissioner the right to report directly to the Secretary of the new Department and have his views presented to Congress.
I might add here that that is not a concession because now he has the legal right to report to the Administrator of the Agency.
But whether or not the Commissioner's views would be presented to Congress would still be determined by the Secretary in preparing his over-all report.
The committee on education of the American Association of University Women has studied the report of the Hoover Commission on Organization of the Executive Branch of the Government, as far as it affects education. The committee has taken a stand in favor of the recommendation of the task force to the Hoover Commission, namely, that Federal responsibility for education be lodged in an independent national board of education, composed of lay persons. A precedent for such a board at the Federal level has already been established in the creation of the National Science Foundation Board.
The desire to see a Federal board of education established has been called an "ivory tower" dream of educators. But this recommendation of the task force was reached after consultation with several hundred individuals and organizations and a thorough study of the educational programs now carried on by the Federal Government.
It is argued that the combining health, education, and welfare services under one head increases efficiency and economy. Efficiency, however, does not necessarily result from the clustering of a number of agencies in one department, nor is true efficiency always synonymous with economy.
For a long time, in education, the Federal Government has been penny-wise and pound-foolish. The Federal Office of Education has not been given sufficient support to enable it to meet the demands of the citizens of the States for educational services.
It is significant to note that the task force found that over 90 percent of the educational functions of the Federal Government are outside the jurisdiction of the Office of Education. The task force pointed out that the budget for the educational program of the Department of Agriculture alone is larger than the budget for the Office of Education.
A lack of any Federal policy in education is directly responsible for the fact that any one college or university has to deal with as many as 25 Government agencies, all unrelated and uncoordinated, in the course of a college year. Standards and requirements vary with each agency. The State educational agency is seldom if ever consulted in connection with these Federal programs, whether the problem be on the elementary, secondary, or college level.
The various agencies are not set up to consider the educational needs of the people in a particular area or the educational needs of the country as a whole. The only Federal educational agency which works consistently with its counterpart in the States, is the Öffice of Education. Yet the Office of Education has to refuse many requests from the States because of an insufficient budget and lack of staff.
Reorganization Plan No. 27 would not correct this lack of coordination in Federal services to education. It would only solidify the present undesirable situation.
If the Congress is truly cognizant of the importance of education and the problems inherent in Federal-State relations in this field, it will direct its attention toward a complete revision of the Government's two-hundred-odd educational programs. A reorganization program which does not go to the heart of the problem is a waste of time and money.
For these reasons, the American Association of University Women urges the Senate Committee on Expenditures in the Executive Departments to report unfavorably on Reorganization Plan No. 27, and, next year, to work for the development of an over-all educational policy for the Federal Government directed toward a program coordinated through the United States Office of Education. Such planning, the American Association of University Women maintains, will enable the Federal Government to carry out with the greatest degree of efficiency its responsibility to help the States in the development of their own educational programs.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much, Mrs. Baylor.
If I understand you correctly, it is your opinion, and the opinion of the association for whom you speak, that the cause of education has actually suffered by reason of the present arrangement and location of the Office of Education in the Federal Security Agency. Is that a correct understanding?
Mrs. BAYLOR. That is true.
The CHAIRMAN. Feeling that way about it, you definitely oppose, then, the advancing of the present agency to a departmental status and thus perpetuating the evils that now obtain in the present set-up; is that correct?