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way. The program of enlisted proficiency payments concentrated in the technical and leadership skills is helping to reduce the shortages in these areas.
I might add for the committee's information that I was Vice Chairman of the Cordiner Committee which proposed that legislation to the Congress.
Improved retention rates, as to both quality and quantity, is the major goal of the armed services in dealing with their personnel situation. The provisions of S. 1138, and similar proposed legislation, which would put a premium on not reenlisting, would worsen the heart of the recruitment problem: to maintain adequate retention rates in the skilled and leadership groups.
This legislation would have an overall bad effect on the entire career incentive program, which over the years has been carefully built up, and has to date brought great improvement to the quality and strength of the Armed Forces.
I would really regret to see the concept of service to one's countrywhich, today, is considered to be a citizenship obligation, willingly accepted-be impaired by legislation that would imply that military service is to be a necessary exchange for a free college education and other benefits.
As to educational benefits—as you know, peacetime servicemen at present enjoy training and educational opportunities while in service which were not available to wartime soldiers. In peacetime the armed services are primarily in the business of educating and training personnel, and this training includes academic and vocational work.
We are spending half of a billion dollars a year to support service schools in this country. The Government, in addition, bears most of the cost of the educational and vocational training which hundreds of thousands of servicemen participate in.
Additionally, in the Army last year 51,000 soldiers completed residence courses under the U.S. Armed Forces Institute in order to obtain high school diplomas, college credit, or additional vocational proficiency.
One situation which brings to light the impact that this legislation would have occurred during the Korean conflict. Surveys indicated that only 3 percent of Air Force entrants enlisted in order to get educational benefits under the Korean or GI bill. At the time of separation, however, at least 45 percent of the first-term separations occurred in order that the departees could take advantage of the educational benefits then available. The rate of such separations, unhappily but understandably, was higher among the technically qualified airmen, ment who were in critical short supply in the Air Force.
Since the end of the Korean war improvements in the reenlisted rates, due mainly to the stepup in the career incentive program, have been accomplished. This proposed legislation, which could offer educational benefits worth $300 million a year, would directly cut down these carefully nurtured efforts and reduce the attractiveness of a military career.
The certain effect of this legislation is to work against all the efforts the Congress and the Department of Defense have made to build up the Nation's Armed Forces with qualified and experienced men. Because of existing world tension, our Armed Forces must be adequate and ready at all times to defend the Nation.
In view of technological advances in modern weapons and warfare, it is imperative that the armed services develop a larger hard core of career personnel. The turnover rate of military personnel should be reduced.
I would like to add a statement here. I am for turnover when it relieves the armed services of men who are neither qualified for nor interested in providing the very great skills that we need in this primary and essential effort; and I am against turnover that in any way is caused by unnecessary attractions which take men out of the military service at the very point they are needed most.
In order to reduce turnover, major emphasis should be placed on the incentive factors which can be gained by building up the attractiveness and prestige of military service.
The provisions in the proposed legislation relating especially to educational benefits detract from building up the attractiveness and prestige of the services. All of us want our armed services to attain adequate and sufficient strength to do the toughest job of our lives. The services simply cannot do the job without obtaining and retaining the best men available.
I implore this committee to not permit us to take any steps backward.
If I may, Mr. Chairman, I would like to submit for the record the testimony that would have been given by Dr. Henry King Stanford, president of Birmingham-Southern College.
That statement is available, and with the committee counsel for your consideration.
Mr. QUIGLEY. If there is no objection, Dr. Stanford's testimony will be admitted at this point in the record.
(The statement follows:)
TESTIMONY OF DR. HENRY KING STANFORD
I am Dr. Henry King Stanford, president of Birmingham-Southern College, Birmingham, Ala. I appear today for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States as a member of the chamber's government operations and expenditures committee. I will address myself to five aspects of the education and vocational training assistance program for peacetime veterans as proposed in S. 1138 and similar legislation proposed. They are:
(1) The national chamber's overall position on education.
(2) The questionable need for a program of educational and vocational training for peacetime veterans.
(3) The inherent danger to academic standards in such a program.
CHAMBER POSITION ON EDUCATION
The chamber believes that educational opportunity is the right of every American, and that such opportunity requires curricula properly balanced, providing both quantity and quality in education. Such opportunity also requires physical facilities to meet qualitative and quantitative needs in order to permit maximum achievement of educational objectives.
Business requires educated leadership for its own advancement and is dependent upon the schools and colleges of the Nation to supply such leadership. With such a stake in the progress of education, businessmen subscribe to an aim for educational training which emphasizes the importance, responsibility, and dignity of the individual citizen. The chamber believes that students should be inspired to superior performance geared to their highest capacities and instincts rather than being satisfied with performance geared to the average.
Because of a conviction that such an aim will not be advanced by the passage of proposals currently under consideration by this committee, the board of directors of the national chamber twice endorsed recommendations to oppose such legislation. The recommendations and decisions were made only after careful and extensive study by chamber committees on education, national defense and Government operations and expenditures.
THE QUESTION ABLE NEED
Giving peacetime veterans the same benefits as those who served during times of war is a radical departure from the concept of providing war veterans with readjustment benefits upon return to civilian life.
The peacetime veteran is not subject to the same disruption as the wartime veteran. Neither is his return to civilian life the same as that of a wartime veteran who faces an abnormal period immediately following the end of a conflict. His return to civilian life and resumption of his education or employment take place in a relatively calm atmosphere. He is not part of a mass demobi. lization, with hundreds of thousands of veterans simultaneously seeking employment or seeking entrance into schools which are already operating near their normal capacity.
In addition, the peacetime veteran has the advantage of knowing far in advance when he will be discharged from the military service. Thus, he can plan his additional schooling, or his work, in an orderly fashion, with relatively little disruption to self or family.
The proposal for educational assistance for peacetime veterans does not give adequate consideration to many other already existing programs assisting qualified students, including ex-servicemen. One Federal program alone, under the National Defense Education Act, is expected to make over 100,000 educational loans, totaling about $40 million, during the current fiscal year.
Assistance from private, State, and Federal sources already exists in very large amounts, and has been steadily increasing. Student loans have increased fivefold in the last 5 years and are expected to finance half of the anticipated 6.4 million college students enrolled in 1970.
DANGER TO ACADEMIC STANDARDS
This proposed program to grant special educational benefits to peacetime veterans would jeopardize the present efforts of colleges and universities to maintain their high standards of academic proficiency. Increased demands would further overburden classroom facilities and overtax the present faculty strength.
College enrollment has more than doubled since 1946. After World War II, when men began returning to the campuses (and the greatest majority of them were veterans) the Nation's college enrollment was 1,676,851. In the fall of 1959, the Office of Education enrollment figures show 3,402,297. Of this number only a small proporation were either World War II or Korean GI bill students.
During the intervening years, costs of every kind have risen. Revenues received by institutions of higher learning have also increased. Nevertheless, there is a substantial gap between tuition income and operating expenses of colleges and universities.
With most colleges and universities all over the country slipping further into debt in order to maintain their normally increasing student enrollments, artificial boosting of student population would destroy the precarious financial balance of many colleges.
THE ESTIMATED COST OF THE PROGRAM
While of itself the cost of a program such as envisioned in S. 1138 and similar legislation may not be the determining factor, it is certainly a point worthy of serious consideration. The Veterans' Administration has estimated that the cost of providing the type of educational assistance proposed in S. 1138 would average approximately $300 million a year for the next 10 years a total of about $3 billion. This huge amount of Federal expenditures would hardly avoid having an inflationary impact on the economy. To the extent that it would further inflate costs related to education, it could be considered selfdefeating.
A program which would use as the yardstick for Federal assistance only the requirement of military service during the time peace, has implicit within it an ironical consequence. We know that veterans and their families and
dependents comprise about half our national population. Veterans pay taxes as everyone else does. The money for a huge program such as this must be borne in large part by the veteran segment of the population.
PEACETIME EDUCATIONAL BENEFITS AS A PRECEDENT
Whatever might be said regarding the potential merits of programs such as envisaged in S. 1138 and related bills, one thought, I believe, should remain clear. We are not dealing with a temporary measure.
If the Congress adopts the concept that a peacetime veteran is entitled to pretty much the same educational benefits that are available to veterans who serve during wars, it is extremely unlikely that such benefits would ever be terminated. The historical trend of veterans' benefits and services has been in exactly the opposite direction. In addition, it would undoubtedly be argued that to terminate peacetime veterans' educational benefits, once having been established, would discriminate unfairly against future peacetime servicemen. At present, expenditures for veterans' benefits and services constitute the fourth-ranking spending program of the Federal Government. To add another highly expensive and permanent program to those already in existence, particularly when the need is far from proven, is unwarranted.
We are conscious of the fact that this Nation must maintain the integrity of its system of higher education. We are confident that this very same integrity provides an assurance that qualified students including peacetime veterans—will not be denied an opportunity to study at the Nation's colleges. We believe additional proposals for veterans' educational benefits are unnecessary, and in fact, will impede needed improvements in the quality of higher education-for those people who would normally matriculate, as well as for those whom these proposals purport to assist.
The national chamber will continue to urge business leadership and cooperation in actions to support higher education and thus increase the economic and cultural well-being which will accompany a continuing rise in the educational levels of the American people. By so doing, business shares in any benefits directly as an integral part of the whole community.
In view of the reasons outlined by Mr. Burgess and myself, the National Chamber of Commerce strongly urges that this committee disapprove S. 1138 and similar proposed legislation.
Mr. QUIGLEY. I gather there is not a separate statement from Mr. Ballantyne?
Mr. BURGESS. I don't believe so. There is no separate statement, sir.
Mr. QUIGLEY. Mr. Teague of California ?
Mr. Burgess, while I always do my best to keep an open mind on all pending legislation, I have no hesitancy in saying that I am very much persuaded by what seems to me to be very sound arguments that you have presented in this matter.
I would like to ask you a question. Do you happen to recall about what it costs in dollars per year to train a draftee or an enlistee?
Mr. BURGESS. Congressman Teague, I cannot give you that exact figure, but it is up in the thousands of dollars.
Mr. TEAGUE of California. I have in mind some figure like $7,000 a year.
Mr. BURGESS. I don't think you will be far wrong. When you count, sir, the time of the men that have to be given that training a way from the regular job of maintaining the readiness or going force or learning about missiles, you probably have a figure that is far in excess of $7,000.
Mr. Teague of California. Thank you very much. Certainly with your experience in this field your testimony should be of great interest and weight to this committee.
Mr. BURGESS. Congressman Teague, thank you, and that is the reason I wanted to come here and testify on this particular piece of legislation.
Mr. QUIGLEY. Mr. George.
Mr. GEORGE. I believe you said, sir, that "education benefits for purely peacetime military service." Do you consider this purely peacetime!
Mr. BURGESS. All things being equal, I would say we are all in it together, Mr. Congressman, and I would not say purely peacetime in the sense of desirable peacetime but it is peacetime as it relates to all of us.
Mr. GEORGE. By virtue of the act ending the Korean war?
Mr. GEORGE. Yes. You realize and I think your committee found that our education scheme is far behind. We need to advance our education, is that right?
Mr. BÚRGESS. Yes, sir. If I might, Mr. Congressman, just say there, I think that rather than needing more people educated, we need people educated better. I think the man that wants to be educated better has that motivation anyway. I don't think you can impose it on him or give it to him. I think the motivation has to be one of opportunity and most importantly, of desire. Just putting it out there does not achieve a result in my experience.
Mr. MITCHELL. Will the gentleman yield at that point ?
Mr. MITCHELL. Mr. Burgess if that is true does not that sort of go against the argument you made that these people will leave the military service because of the fact that they can have educational benefits.
Mr. BURGESS. No, sir, I do not quite see that point, Mr. Congressman. My answer to this situation is that I feel that a young man who either volunteers or is inducted into the military service comes out in my book generally a finer physical man, a finer mental man, and financially better off. If he stays in by virtue of the fact that certain educational benefits and continuing motivational opportunities are available to him--and those things, of course, are put into certain obligation arrangements—that if he stays, say, 20 years in the military and he comes out with the retirement that is available to him at that time, he starts a second career in our life. I think, and I know without any question, that if we can retain these people in the military service—the good ones, the men that the military want and the men that want to stay—we will have a career force that will give us much addititional strength.
Mr. Teague of California. Will you yield, Mr. George?
Mr. TEAGUE of California. Just on that same point, isn't it true that under present conditions these young men who really want to get an education can get it before they enter the military service!
Mr. BURGESS. Congressman Teague, there are 30 or more choices available to a young man. Quite apart from his God-given obligation to serve this country, if the young man and his family will plan his life a little bit, he can plot his education and his training either before or after his military service. Those choices are designed to cater to those situations.