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Public Health Service in terms of health research, in terms of making certain findings with regard to the determinations that must be made. What the President's reorganization proposal does is to take the Water Pollution Control Administration just as the 1965 act created it, move it lock, stock, and barrel over to the Interior Department, but it leaves, just as the committees contemplated last year, these relatively narrow health functions and responsibilities in Public Health Service. Senator RIBICOFF. I understand, but you are dealing with people
. In other words, how many people, Secretary Gardner, will remain in the Public Health Service after this transfer?
Secretary GARDNER. I missed the first part of the question. Senator RIBICOFF. How many people will remain in HEW dealing with water, after this contemplated transfer?
Secretary GARDNER. I am sorry, I can't give you the answer. It is a fairly small number.
Senator RIBICOFF. How many are there now?
Secretary GARDNER. About 150 people now concerned with the health aspects of water scattered through
Senator RIBICOFF. If you have 150 people concerned basically with health aspects of water, and they are experts in that field, why couldn't those 150 people be transferred to Interior under the administration of the new Water Coordinator, if it is to be Secretary Quig. ley, or whoever it is going to be? This is what is bothering me. Secretary Gardner, is there any reason why these men can't be doing this function in Interior?
Secretary GARDNER. Yes, sir; I believe that there is. Our Department has a lot of interdepartmental connections. I have concluded that almost everything important is interdepartmental, and certainly health is an aspect of everything, education is an aspect of everything.
On the health front we are dealing all of the time with Agriculture on pesticides, we are taking care of the Peace Corp volunteers and the Federal prison inmates. We look after the health of the Indians. Our interdepartmental relationships are natural and ubiquitous, and we can never relinquish our concern for the health aspects. It doesn't matter what we transfer to anybody else.
Take a subject such as automotive safety. It may be that the highway safety aspects will be taken care of somewhere else. It may be that the engineering aspects will be taken care of in a new Department of Transportation. But we will never be able to relinquish our responsibility for the health aspects as long as the high rate of accidents continues.
So that we are never going to root out our concern for the health aspects of water. This just can't be done as long as we are concerned with public health.
It seems to me we have a very workable division of labor here. We know what we are supposed to do. We know the functions and I would be glad to describe them if you want me to. In fact, I have a two-page memo here which outlines them. They are highly professional. They are very closely related strictly to the health aspects of the water problem. Many of them we have been doing for years and years. Most of them remained in the Public Health Service after the creation of the Water Pollution Control Administration.
Senator MUSKIE. Mr. Secretary, when you speak of the health aspects you are speaking about drinking water, aren't you?
Secretary GARDNER. To a considerable degree, yes.
Senator MUSKIE. So that you are talking about one of the very important uses of water.
Secretary GARDNER. Yes, sir.
Senator MUSKIE. When we developed the water quality standards legislation last year, we developed it because we recognized the multiple uses of water, including public drinking supplies, as well as recreation, industrial purposes, agricultural purposes, et cetera. So this is one of several uses of water.
Now in the Department of HEW, although the health aspects were left in the Public Health Service, they were all in one department subject to coordination under the new Assistant Secretary of HEW, which was authorized by the Water Quality Act. So we had all of these uses of water under the supervision of one department.
Now we are leaving one of them behind in HEW, so that in that sense we are not unifying the program. We are splitting it off. Now the question is whether we gain enough by the transfer to Interior, to offset this splitting off, in addition to the fundamental question which Senator Ribicoff raised as to whether it ought to be split off at all, whether or not it ought not all be transferred?
Secretary GARDNER. May I comment just a bit further. First of all, I don't think anything will ever be completely unified in this complicated Government. I would have been delinquent in my
duties if I had not pressed my health people very, very hard on this point at the time, at the final moment of decision when we were faced with going forward on the new plan.
Senator MUSKIE. Remember that your health people didn't even want the program moved from the Public Health Service to another place in HEW.
Secretary GARDNER. Well, I consulted them at this moment of decision. Specifically, I consulted with the Surgeon General and my Assistant Secretary for Health and Scientific Affairs, and I pressed them hard on whether we would be able to continue to carry forward our health functions, whether this was a workable plan, whether the health aspects of the total problem were so inseparable that it would make impossible such a transfer, and they flatly said that this was perfectly workable.
Senator MUSKIE. But the same people who felt it was not workable to transfer the program to another agency in HEW now find it would be workable to take it out of the Department altogether?
Secretary GARDNER. Philip Lee, the Assistant Secretary, was not in the Department at the time, and I don't know how much Surgeon General Stewart was involved in the transaction that you are talking about. He was not the Surgeon General at the time and I doubt that he was much involved.
Senator MUSKIE. I understand, of course, the reason that they objected to the transfer to the Public Health Service. They didn't like to see their empire breaking up. Now that the empire is broken up they have fewer reservations about getting rid of the whole program. That is about it, isn't it?
Secretary GARDNER. I would have more respect for the professional integrity of these two men than you would suggest.
Senator MUSKIE. This was a professional judgment and there is an inconsistency.
Secretary GARDNER. I did not ask these two gentlemen to present me with a historically consistent case. I wanted the answer on the merits.
Senator MUSKIE. Well, I recognize there are different people involved and I am not going to press the point except I think it is valid to point out that in the struggle over the Water Quality Act we got a professional judgment from the people in the Public Health Service, the Health people, whoever they then were, that it would be against the best interest of the program to take it out of Public Health and put it into another place in HEW. Now we have another and different professional judgment, apparently made by different people, that it would be a good thing or at least not a bad thing to move it out of HEW altogether and to another department.
Mr. SEIDMAN. Senator Muskie, could I comment on this. I think Congress did make the basic decision that water pollution should be separated from health functions when it enacted the Water Quality Act and set up the Federal Water Pollution Control Administration.
Senator MUSKIE. That decision was made after 3 years, a delay which was due in large part to resistance in the Public Health Service.
Mr. SEIDMAN. That is right. The decision was, and it was this very issue as to whether the health organization should be responsible for water pollution control or whether it ought to be separated. Now once you took the step of separating it from the Public Health Service, you then had to make arrangements which would insure that the Health people had a proper role in the pollution program.
Senator MUSKIE. This arrangement was the establishment of the Assistant Secretary.
Mr. SEIDMAN. I think this demonstrated the feasibility of maintaining the proper role for the Public Health Service and those concerned with health in water pollution even if it were carried out in a separate organization. These arrangements can continue and will be much the same whether the water pollution control administration is in HEW or if it is in Interior.
Now if this step had not been taken by the Congress, the transfer to Interior would have been much more difficult and probably impossible. But once you did this, it made it possible to separate it out and organize water pollution activities with other water resource programs, to which they relate. This is one of the difficulties Secretary Gardner pointed out. Programs of government today are so complex, I know very few where you can organize within a single department every single function that relates to a given program.
Senator MUSKIE. That is my argument, that you ought to leave it where it is.
Mr. SEIDMAN. And the Water Pollution Control Act itself indicates the programs must give due regard to public water supply, propagation of fish and aquatic life, wildlife, recreational purposes, agricultural, industrial, and other legitimate uses which come into comprehensive river basin planning, which is done by Interior. Also, water research is now also carried out in both Departments.
Senator RIBICOFF. Basically, Mr. Seidman, if you are really interested in doing that, then why don't you organize the whole water resources of our Nation in one place, and then pollution is just a phase of it. It is a phase of it anyway. We are talking as if the whole problem of water is pollution.
Why I was enthusiastic about transferring this to Secretary Udall's Department because for the first time I thought what you were trying to do in the executive branch was to recognize that this whole problem of water resources—in every phase, where we get water, how we use water, how we get more of it, how we preserve it-should all be brought together and that pollution control is part of the husbanding of all the water resources of our Nation. Pollution is part of it.
Now what you are doing, you are saying the only problem of water is pollution.
Mr. SEIDMAN. No, sir. Senator RIBICOFF. Pollution is only one phase of it, and I thought what you were going to try to do was to bring all of this under the jurisdiction of Secretary Udall's Department. Then you were going to say, “Now, in order to do this right, we must make sure that water is clean. We must make sure that water isn't polluted.” And then we would have it all in one place where someone could look at it in its entirety.
Now basically, I was looking at the reorganization as it related to the whole problem of water utilization and conservation, and water pollution control is but a phase to make this possible. This is what I wanted to discuss.
Mr. SEIDMAN. Certainly the plan before us is concerned only with water pollution. But we are talking about conservation of water resources as a whole, and I certainly agree on that. Pollution is one aspect of the problem. The purpose in putting this function in the Department of the Interior is not to make Interior just a pollution agency, but because we are concerned with comprehensive development of our water resources.
Senator RIBICOFF. Why are we doing that part first? You see what is bothering us in different ways, Senator Muskie, Senator Gruening, and myself, is that I think we are all interested in water, and we want to do the best we can. Now Senator Muskie has a piece of this, and his leadership has been outstanding, and it has had us to take all the problems of water pollution and bring them together to make sure we were getting a real job done.
Now, Senator Gruening recognizes also that water pollution is a question of health.
What excited me when this was first discussed was the thought that the executive branch of the Government was really trying to do a job. I thought that basically what we were going to do was look at the whole problem of water resources. We were going to give it to one man, and that was the Secretary of the Interior, and that part of his job of husbanding and developing the water resources and developing them of the entire Nation involved water pollution control.
Mr. SEIDMAN. Mr. Chairman, this relates to functions that were placed in the Water Resources Council, of which the Secretary of the Interior is Chairman, by Public Law 89–80, enacted in July of 1965, which deals with the broad problem of water resources. This is the Water Resources Planning Act.
This act deals with the comprehensive development program and the planning program. It establishes the Water Resources Council, the purpose of which is to accomplish the very objective you have in
to prevent impediments to navigation, constituted the first specific Federal water pollution control legislation. The Public Health Service Act of 1912 contained provisions authorizing investigations of water pollution related to the diseases and impairments of man and directed attention, for the first time, to human health factors in water pollution. The Oil Pollution Act of 1924 was enacted to control oil discharges in coastal waters damaging to aquatic life, harbors and docks, and recreational facilities.
Efforts to obtain comprehensive Federal water pollution control legislation continued and were almost successful in 1936, 1938, and 1940. These efforts were interrupted by World War II, but were renewed in 1947, and culminated in the enactment by the 80th Congress of the Water Pollution Control Act of 1948 (Public Law 845, 80th Cong.).
THE FEDERAL WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT OF 1948
This act authorized the Surgeon General to assist and encourage State studies and programs to prevent and abate pollution of interstate waters, including enactment of uniform State pollution control laws and adoption of interstate pollution control contracts. The act also (1) authorized pollution research programs; (2) directed the Department of Justice, with State consent, to institute court action to require an individual or firm to cease practices causing pollutions ; and (3) created a Water Pollution Control Advisory Board. Finally, the 1948 act provided for total annual apropriations of $27.8 million for 5 fiscal years (1949–53) for the following specific purposes : (1) $22.5 million a year for lowinterest Federal loans to States, municipalities and interstate agencies for construction of sewage and waste treatment works, with individual loans limited to $250,000 or one-third of the cost of the proposed project, whichever was less (no money was ever appropriated under this authorization and it lapsed unused); (2) $1 million annually for grants to the States for pollution studies; (3) $1 million annually for one-third of cost grants to States and municipalities to aid them in drafting plants for construction of water pollution control projects; (4) $800,000 annually for the construction of Public Health Service water pollution research facilities; and (5) $2 million annually for administrative costs of the Public Health Service and the Federal Security Agency.
The act was experimental and limited to a 5-year period, after which it was to be reviewed and revised on the basis of experience.
FEDERAL WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT OF 1956
Comprehensive water pollution control legislation of a permanent nature was enacted by the 84th Congress (the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, Public Law 660, 84th Cong.), which extended and strengthened the 1948 act which had expired on June 30, 1956.
The 1956 act provided that it was to be administered by the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service under the supervision and direction of the Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare.
In summary, it authorized the Surgeon General to study pollution, cooperate with groups to develop control programs, and promote pollution research by direct operations as well as grants. Specifically, the act
(1) Reaffirmed the policy of the Congress to recognize, preserve and protect the primary responsibilities and rights of the States in preventing and controlling water pollution ;
(2) Authorized continued Federal-State cooperation in the development of comprehensive programs for the control of water pollution by requiring the Surgeon General to assist States in preparing comprehensive programs for the elimination and reduction of pollution of interstate waters and tributaries thereof;
(3) Authorized increased technical assistance to States and intensified and broadened research by using the research potential of universities and other institutions outside of Government;
(4) Authorized collection and dissemination of basic data on water quality relating to water pollution prevention and control;
(5) Directed the Surgeon General to continue to encourage interstate compacts and uniform State laws;
(6) Authorized grants to States and interstate agencies up to $3 million a year for the next 5 years for water pollution control activities;