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As to whether the transfer has to be worked out by negotiation, the answer is no; it does not. The Secretary is given authority to determine that in this plan.
Senator MUNDT. If there is an argument between the Commissions they might as well not talk because the Secretary has the final authority? Mr. LAWTON. The Secretary in that respect has the final authority,
Senator MUNDT. Let me ask you conversely, what specific gains would the Commissioner of Education and his office receive from this kind of transfer? What would be the benefit to him and the functions of his Office which are not there today?
Mr. LAWTON. The one gain that I see, and I do not know whether it is the Commissioner himself who would receive it, is that education as a Federal function would receive a representation in the Cabinet for that function of Government which it does not now have. That is the principal gain as I see it. Otherwise, the present relative status is in no way affected. The present educational appropriations are in no way increased by this transfer. There are no substantive changes made in any of the functions of the agency; there cannot be.
Senator MUNDT. By and large, he is exactly where he is now and his function is exactly what he is now and if he is to be represeuted on the Cabinet, it is indirectly through the chain of command at the top.
Mr. LAWTON. Just as in the case of any other function of an executive department, the representation would be through the Cabinet officer concerned.
Senator MUNDT. So that it would be pretty difficult to particularize on any advantages which education per se would receive from this transfer, unless the person who represented the function of education on the Cabinet would be a better individual than the person representing education in the organization.
Mr. LAWTON. There is no one representing them now.
Senator MUNDT. Directly.
Mr. LAWTON. Directly or indirectly.
Senator MUNDT. It would also be hard to find the advantage unless the person representing the function of education to the committees of Congress would be more articulate than at present. So that it remains about the same as where it is now, many times removed from the Cabinet under the new plan, too.
Mr. LAWTON. Just one degree. The Secretary of the department is the only intermediary, because of Commissioner reporting directly to
Senator MUNDT. Well, there are also some Under Secretarics to the Secretary.
Mr. LAWTON. You also at the present time have an Assistant Federal Security Administrator and two assistant heads of the Federal Security Agency. But the authority specifically written into the plan is that he reports to the Secretary and he cannot be layered.
Senator MUNDT. The $100,000 saving in budgetary and administrative functions is pretty well consumed by the salaries and office establishments under the new officers, is it not?
Mr. LAWTON. No, sir; they would not be, because you abolish, under section 7 of the plan, the office of Assistant Federal Security Administrator and the two offices of assistant head of the Federal
Security Agency, and the present executive assistant's job would probably not be necessary in that framework as there would be an administrative Assistant Secretary.
Senator MUNDT. There is a question in my mind, though.
Mr. LAWTON. There is a difference, of course, involved in salaries. Senator MUNDT. There is a difference in salaries and the size of the establishment, because the functions are broader and more important. So I would say that in terms of economy, at least, $100,000 saved or $50,000 is not a great saving in connection with the size of the operation.
You get some economy,
Mr. LAWTON. It is not a great saving, no. but you do not get a great deal. You do not get a great deal of economy in more cases unless you change or eliminate functions. Programs of Government are the things that cost money.
Senator MUNDT. Of course, this plan is not part of the Hoover recommendation. We have been led to believe that if we adopt all of the Hoover Commission reports there would be $3,000,000,000 worth of economy.
Mr. LAWTON. I still would like to see in the Hoover Commission report where that statement is made.
Senator MUNDT. I would, too.
Mr. LAWTON. I have never been able to find it in the reports. Senator MUNDT. It has been said that they would like to save the $3,000,000,000. I would like to save it, too.
I have no further questions.
The CHAIRMAN. Senator Smith, do you have any questions?
The CHAIRMAN. Speaking of the $3,000,000,000 figure, that from $3,000,000,000 to $5,000,000,000 of savings would result, that is not official as to any action or conclusions reached by the Hoover Commission. That is, and I dislike to use the word "propaganda", but actually that is what it amounted to, the propaganda of the Citizens Committee. And from the very beginning in every address I have made with reference to reorganization and here in this committee, I have expressed my views that that was overoptimistic, to even anticipate or hope for in this plan as in every other plan that has come up here before. I have tried to find out whether there were actual savings to be effected by the plan, and with one exception I believe there has not been anyone who definitely testified to and pointed out that that savings actually would result. I think there is some legislation to be carried out on the Hoover Commission recommendation where I think some actual savings will materialize, but this talk of $3,000,000,000 or $4,000,000,000 in savings is wishful thinking. Is there anything further, Mr. Lawton?
Mr. LAWTON. No, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much.
Mr. LAWTON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. The committee will next hear from Mr. Oscar Ewing, Federal Security Administrator. Mr. Ewing, will you come forward, please.
STATEMENT OF OSCAR R. EWING, FEDERAL SECURITY
Mr. EWING. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Ewing, do you have a prepared statement? Mr. EWING. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Very well, you may proceed with your statement, and you may either insert it in the record and high-light it, or comment on it, or you may read it, whichever you prefer.
Mr. EWING. I would prefer to read it, Mr. Chairman, if I may.
Mr. CHAIRMAN. Very well, you may proceed.
Mr. EWING. I have tried to briefly, but at the same time adequately, cover the various points of view on this matter.
The CHAIRMAN. Very well, go ahead.
Mr. EWING. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I appreciate the opportunity to testify in support of the President's Reorganization Plan No. 27 and in opposition to Senate Resolution 302 to disapprove this plan. This is the second plan submitted by the President pursuant to the Reorganization Act of 1949, which proposes to give departmental status to the health, education, and social-security programs now administered in the Federal Security Agency.
Essentially, the question before your committee is this: Should the programs which Congress has established to promote the well-being of all the people have the same standing in Government, the same recognition as permanent and fundamental elements of governmental structure, as for example, programs to promote the well-being of labor, of commerce, or of agriculture?
What are these programs? First, they are the Federal programs which were inaugurated by the Social Security Act of 1935-Old age and survivors insurance, the programs of old-age assistance, aid to the needy blind, and aid to needy children, and the programs for the health and welfare of mothers and children. Second, they are the medical research programs-cancer, heart disease, dental disease, mental health, and the like-the preventive medicine programs such as those to assist States in the development of State and local public health services, the hospital construction program, and the water pollution control program. Third, they are the program embodied in the organic act of the Office of Education of studying and reporting on better methods of extending and improving educational opportunities, as well as the vocational education programs. Fourth, they are the programs for the vocational rehabilitation of handicapped persons, and the programs established by the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and other laws to protect the public against unsafe or dishonest food, drugs and cosmetics.
These are programs directed to the well-being of all individuals. The Federal Security Agency, and the new Department of Health, Education, and Security which Reorganization Plan No. 27 establishes, have as their principal objective, not the promotion of the welfare of any particular group of our population, but the health, education, and economic security of every individual, regardless of his occupation or particular economic interest. For the most part, these programs are not federally operated but are programs to assist, financially and otherwise, the States and communities in which rests.
the primary responsibility for the health, education, and security of the people.
These are Federal activities which now are relegated to a second place in our Government structure. They rank below Government programs designed to promote the cause of labor, of agriculture, and of commerce, and programs for the improvement and conservation of our natural resources.
To my mind the burden of proof is on those who assert that these programs should continue in a subordinate position. I believe that a mere statement of what they are and of their universal importance to every person in this Nation, in itself makes the case for according them equality in our system of Government with the programs which now enjoy departmental status.
Departmental status would greatly benefit the health, education, and social-security activities of the Federal Government. They would have a representative in the President's Cabinet. Today they have none. The chief value of being represented in the Cabinet is the close and frequent contacts with the President, knowing from week to week what he and his chief aides are thinking, the opportunity to present in Cabinet discussions the point of view of health, of education, and of social security. And by the same token, the representation of these interests in the Cabinet would be of untold value to the professions concerned, to say nothing of the American people who have a vital interest in these programs.
And I would like to interject this thought right here that it is very important to be in on the discussions where the top decisions are made. Otherwise you are faced with a fait accompli and the voice of neither education, health, nor security is heard when the final decisions are made, as is so often the case.
Senator BENTON. Have you any examples, Mr. Ewing?
Mr. EWING. Yes. For example, there is the time when the National Security Resources Board was set up. The President for reasons, and I think for very good reasons, decided to limit membership in that board to members of the Cabinet. It was a line that could be drawn. Actually, the Federal Security Agency deals with the human resources of this country.
Senator BENTON. That is an excellent example, it seems to me. That is all I want.
Mr. EWING. It is almost trite now to say that departmental status for these Government functions is long overdue. Since the Harding and Hoover administrations, when the recommendation for an executive department in this area of governmental activity was first made, these programs have grown manyfold in size as measured by appropriations and personnel employed, and in importance as measured by their impact on the American people. This growth is continuing.. The Congress is about to take an important and significant step toward the extension and improvement of our old age and survivors insurance,. public assistance, and child health and welfare programs. Important measures in the field of preventive health work and medical research are in the offing, and the assumption of larger Government responsibilities in the field of education cannot long be postponed.
In the face of these overwhelming arguments for giving departmental status to the Federal activities in health, education and welfare, the question may well be asked, Why has this not been done long
ago? The answer is that again and again such efforts have been defeated by professional groups who insist on separate departmental status for the particular professional activities in which they are interested. For example, the doctors want a separate Department of Health with a doctor of medicine as the Secretary, while the educators want a separate Department of Education, with an educator as Secretary. These are the forces that in the Eightieth Congress opposed the Fulbright-Taft bill, S. 140, which would have established a Department of Health, Education, and Security. They are the forces who claim credit for being primarily responsible for the defeat of Reorganization Plan No. 1 in the first session of this Congress. They are waging the same battle today against Reorganization Plan No. 27.
No better answer can be made to the arguments of these professional groups than that which is contained in this committee's report on the Fulbright-Taft bill of the Eightieth Congress (S. 140) which this committee reported favorably and unanimously to the Senate on June 6, 1947, and which has been introduced in the Eighty-first Congress by Senator McCarthy as S. 2060, that is, the substitute bill introduced August 5, 1949. In that report this committee said in part:
It was the contention of representatives of both the medical and educational groups that each of these services is of such importance as to be entitled to separate departmental status. The committee, however, was of the opinion that there was little chance that three such departments would be created by Congress and that there was no real need for three separate departments covering each of these fields of activity. To establish them would be contrary to the policies of the Congress in its effort toward economy and the elimination of emergency and independent agencies. The basic effort should be to coordinate and consolidate governmental activities into one department particularly where functions are interrelated, in the interest of economy and efficiency of administration.
Opposition in the committee against reporting the bill favorably was based primarily on the contention that the bill tended in fact to create additional bureaucracy. If the proposition to establish three departments was seriously considered, this point of opposition would become increasingly applicable.
It seems to me that the insistence of the several professions on separate departmental status is a complete misconception of the consideration that should be given to professional skills in the erection of governmental structure. Obviously, professional skills must be given due consideration but governmental structure must be set up to serve the citizen, not exalt the profession. It is the well-being of the individual, not control by doctors, educators, or social workers with which the Government's health, educational, and social-security functions are primarily concerned.
Of course, nothing in plan No. 27 diminishes the power of the President and of the Congress to sever health, education, or both. from the new department which would be established under Reorganization Plan No. 27 and set each of them up as a separate agency or department. Those who object to grouping them in a single department argue that such a step now would prejudice their chances of accomplishing their ideal in the future. I confess my inability to understand that argument. These activities are now grouped in one agency. They can just as easily be separated from a new department as from the Federal Security Agency. They would be no more "frozen" in the new organization than they are now in the existing set-up. The proponents of separatism, in short, will be neither farther from their goal nor any nearer to it as a result of the approval of plan No. 27.