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Mr. FULLING. That is correct, sir.
Mr. Brooks. Under the terms of that bill you were required to report to the Armed Services Committee of the House and Senate periodically prior to that construction. You have someone here this morning who will cover that feature of the construction program.
Mr. FULLING. Yes, we have.
Mr. BROOKS. How much additional construction do you envisage for the year 1960?
Mr. FULLING. We envisage $1,030 million additional funds over and above the $250 million which was previously authorized.
Mr. BROOKS. That is by the year 1960?
Mr. FULLING. It will cover facilities for the reserve components, including the National Guard. There will be armories, there will be nonarmory construction, there will be airfields, there will be training centers. Anything required in the nature of facilities for a healthy and active Reserve program.
Mr. Brooks. Would you want that staggered over a period of years, from 1955, so much a year, is that it?
Mr. Fulling. Yes, sir. We have made order-of-magnitude estimates as to how we feel this money should be incrementally authorized.
Mr. BROOKS. What is your estimate there?
Mr. Fulling. The estimate is as indicated on chart 1. There is a buildup there, you will see, between the year 1956 and 1960.
Mr. BROOKS. In other words, in 1956 you will need $109 million, is that right?
Mr. FULLING. That is correct.
Mr. BROOKS. In 1958 it will be $262 million additional over prior authorizations?
Mr. FULLING. That is correct. Mr. BROOKS. 1959, you will need $166 million more and in 1960, $150 million?
Mr. FULLING. That is right.
Mr. BRAY. Next year you contemplate that for the year beginning Julyli, 1955, $109 million?
Mr. FULLING. That is correct.
Mr. BRAY. In this amendment you say, "In such amounts as may belappropriated from time to time.”
I don't ever recall an authorization of that type. Would there be objection to just giving you $109 million, giving you a blank check and letting you write anything in?
Mr. FULLING. We do not conceive of a blank check.
Mr. BROOKS. I think he realizes the committee will probably put something in there.
Mr. Bray. Don't think that we are going to give you a blank check. The committee would be of no use here. I will never vote to give you a blank check because after all that is our job.
Mr. FULLING. That is right, and we certainly expect that there will be the adequate controls for the proper administration of these funds.
Mr. BRAY. Then, this amendment which has been introduced by the chairman at the recommendation of the Department of Defense, you just put that in there but you didn't expect to get it, did you?
Mr. FULLING. Yes, we expected to get it. Mr. Bray. Do you mean that is what you want, in any amount? That is, we would merely say, "Any amount they appropriate is all right," and that does away with any authority this committee has for authorization? Is that what you want?
Mr. FULLING. We would still report back to this committee.
Mr. FULLING. We believe we are keeping your committee advised of what we are doing before the fact.
Mr. DEVEREUX. Mr. Chairman, it seems to me what we would be doing here as a committee would be giving up our responsibilities and turning them over to the appropriations committee, should we accept such an amendment as this. I can assure you that we are very jealous of our prerogatives.
Mr. FULLING. I don't think that I am qualified to hazard an opinion on that, sir.
Mr. DEVEREUX. Mr. Counsel, what is your opinion?
Mr. KELLEHER. I think it is the desire of the chairman of the full committee and also Mr. Brooks, to modify this amendment so as to make it for a set period of years and a set amount of money which will bring it into consonance with the existing law.
Mr. BROOKS. May I suggest this to General Devereux, when we had the original bill it was written in the same way as this amendment here. There was no limit on the amount that might be appropriated. At that time the committee changed it and put in $250 million, so as to limit the authorization to a reasonable amount and over a period of years. We can't go to the floor of the House and say: "Here is a bill with no limit at all on it."
I think what members of the committee should think about at the close of the hearings is what will be a reasonable limit.
Mr. KELLEHER. I note, Mr. Fulling, that on page 1 of your statement you state: “While the time limit imposed by the present law”-that is Public Law 783—"would include the fiscal year 1956." It has been my understanding, and I thought it was the understanding of the Department, that actually this law expired, by its very terms, at the end of this fiscal year, 1955.
I have before me, here, a legal opinion, prepared in the Office of the Office of the General Counsel of the Secretary of Defense, which with your permission, Mr. Chairman, I will read a small portion of.
Mr. BROOKS. Proceed.
The language agreed to by the confereesthat is the conferees on 783— was admittedly a compromise and because the Senate version indicated that the period for which appropriations were authorized began in fiscal year 1951, it may be assumed that the 5 fiscal years mentioned in section 3 are those of fiscal year 1951 through and including fiscal year 1955. This assumption is bolstered by the fact that an appropriation of $16 million for Reserve armory construction under Public Law 759 which was the appropriation act for fiscal year 1951, of the 81st Congresshas been charged against the quarter billion dollars contained in Public Law 783.
I agree with that. It has always been my opinion that 1951 was included, even though the law actually was passed, I believe, September 11, 1950.
Now, would I understand or would the committee understand that it is the view of the Department that fiscal year 1956 is included in your current authority? It may turn out to be academic, since you have run out of money:
Mr. Fulling. That is the major point.
Mr. KELLEHER. But I still think the record should indicate what the original law did contemplate with respect to a period of time.
It would appear from your statement, in other words, that the opinion which the Department previously held--and I assume the Department accepted its Counsel's advice in this respect--has now changed. Do you know? I realize you are new in this business, Mr. Fulling, and you might not have that background.
Mr. FULLING. I would prefer to refer that question to one of my associates, if I may, Mr. Deininger.
STATEMENT OF W. R. DEININGER, CHIEF, RESERVES FORCES
FACILITIES DIVISION, OFFICE OF THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE PROPERTIES AND INSTALLATIONS
Mr. DEININGER. If I may address myself to Mr. Kelleher's question, that has been the subject of some discussion in the Department. We have talked with a number of legal minds, in there. There has not been complete agreement as to whether the authorization started in 1951--fiscal year 1951, or the start of the fiscal year 1952. We used 1956 in our presentation here, not pressing the point because as you mentioned before, it was entirely academic to the purpose of our amendment. I don't believe our office, being engineers rather than lawyers, would be qualified to say, "Yes, it is 1951 that it started with," or "It is 1952 that it started with."
Mr. KELLEHER. Mr. Deininger, let's look at what might be an unlikely possibility, but still å possibility, that this bill failed in passage.
You would not have any authority under the 5-year concept, to go before the Appropriations Committee and request an appropriation for the succeeding year. In other words, you would have a latitude of, I believe, but $15 million, and when you allocated that you are out of business. I would suggest, Mr. Chairman, that it might be very helpful, since you were chairman of the original committee, if you would indicate what your understanding was, whether the authority ended this year or 1956.
Mr. Brooks. My recollection of the situation at that time was that the Appropriations Committee had been appropriating some money for this particular purpose. We were in favor of it, but there was no authorization put through. The appropriation as I remember was $1 million. There was an appropriation of additional amounts until it totaled $16 million. We wanted to make it legal and we wanted to support it with an authorization not in existence when the original appropriation was made. We therefore put through this bill to legalize it and then provide for the future.
That is my recollection.
Mr. KELLEHER. And the conclusion from that, Mr. Chairman, would be that fiscal year 1951 was indeed the starting point of this because you were already authorizing something that had been or was about to be appropriated.
Mr. BROOKS. There were some sums, not large sums, that had already been made available in the appropriation bill without any authorization.
Mr. KELLEHER. That is correct, and I think the 5 years does end at the end of this current fiscal year.
Mr. BROOKS. What would come to my mind is this: Do we need any change in the law covering the extension of time. If this 5 years runs out at the end of this year should we amend the basic act so as to extend it?
I think the amendment suggested here is largely a question of raising the amount rather than extending the act.
Mr. FULLING. It is both, sir. We want an extension to the act, and authorization.
Mr. BROOKS. Your amendment bill here H. R. 2107 simply says, "By inserting in lieu thereof, such amounts as may be appropriated from time to time," but since the original act was for 5 years, would that in effect extend the 5-year period, or will that be construed as simply meaning from time to time within the period of the basic act?
Mr. FULLING. One of the recommendations to the amendment is striking out the time limit of the act.
Mr. KELLEHER. I believe, Mr. Chairman, this amendment would have the effect of eliminating the limitation of $250 million and also the limitation as to time. The net effect of that being that there would be no restriction on the amount of money that could be appropriated, nor the period of time over which the program could extend.
Mr. Brooks. Why wouldn't it be a pretty good law to extend this for 5 years—that is, to expire in 1960—and set the amount?
Mr. FULLING. We would not object to that, sir.
Mr. Bray. I think this is a very important program and I am very strongly in favor of it. We don't have very much time to go into any extensive hearing on it.
I wonder how the idea of—you say set a definite time. You say perhaps we won't have time to go into it thoroughly for a year, and give the money necessary, whatever it is.
The reason I say the committee should show some interest in this matter is because there are many definite facilities that can be used by different components of the Reserve.
For instance, in my home State the legislature just appropriated the State's part for 18 new armories to be built, I personally know that at least some of those armories fulfill a great need for an Organized Reserye in that community. The additional facilities to make it available, it would perhaps be only 10 or 20 percent of the cost to build a Reserve building there, or armory.
There has been a very great lack of any coordination in that matter, to my personal knowledge. I know the general and I have discussed the matter and we are trying to get something done on that.
I would like to see some of that dog-in-the-manger stuff stopped and really get this going. I know the purpose of this committee is to get the most facilities for the least money. I would rather like to go into that. I have had some suggestions that have been made. Except in one instance, it landed on very unresponsive ears.
Mr. Fulling. I would like to comment on that particular subject. The procedure that is being followed, today, is that the Reserve facilities at the State level are reviewed by a committee of the interested services.
Mr. Bray. I am very aware of how it is working out because I have been trying to do some of the working out, so I know how it is working
Mr. Fulling. We in the Department of Defense are tremendously interested in just what the Congressman is speaking of.
Mr. Bray. I know of one instance I will not name the place but the city donated the ground for an armory, and they do need a National Guard armory there, there are also five Reserve units there that do badly need space.
Today by adding 20 percent to the cost, or 25 percent to the cost of that guard armory, all of those Reserve units could be handled. It is a place that could be readily expanded. It is a large community and rural.
I have been on the telephone trying to get people to discuss the thing and I have received very little interest. There is one party in this room who has shown interest and is looking into the matter.
I believe the people will take a very dim view of building that National Guard armory there, and then next year or in the next 2 years come along and build a Reserve armory, with 20 percent addition you could build them both in the one place.
The public will not put up with much of that.
Mr. FULLING. The Department of Defense reviews these armory requests from the services. One of the acid tests that the request is put to is joint utilization.
I don't say that we are successful in every case, but we are making a real, honest attempt toward getting joint utilization across the board.
Mr. Bray. I took it up with the guard bureau to see if that could be done. Very frankly, it was blocked at the Defense Department level. I just believe you should start working on that, and I think the committee would perform a useful service to insist that you do it.
Mr. BROOKS. I think the gentleman has a good argument.
Mr. Bray. In fact, General Milton is trying to get that straightened out.
Mr. BROOKS. Thank you, sir. We will now call Hon. Hugh M. Milton II, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Manpower and Reserve Affairs.