« PreviousContinue »
24. Page 53, line 12, strike out "321b" and insert in lieu thereof "321n”.
25. Page 54, line 6 after the period on said line insert the following new sentence: To facilitate the cooperation of Federal agencies in carrying out such studies or surveys, such Federal agencies are hereby authorized to accept funds and reimburse their appropriation for the cost of such studies or surveys.
26. Page 55, immediately following line 8 insert the following new section:
SEC. 304. The Administrator shall appoint a Director to administer the provisions of this title under the direction and supervision of the Administrator, and the basic rate of compensation of such position shall be the same as the basic rate of compensation established for the heads of the constituent agencies of the Housing and Home Finance Agency.
27. Page 72, line 8, strike out "51" and insert in lieu thereof “501".
28. Page 73, lines 19, 20 and 23 and page 75, lines 2, 3 and 6, strike out “moneys" where such appears in each place therein and in each instance insert in lieu thereof "monies”.
29. Page 77, lines 3 and 4, strike out “the State or” where such appears therein.
30. Page 78, immediately following line 8 insert the following new sections, section 508 and section 509:
NATIONAL CAPITAL HOUSING AUTHORITY
Sec. 508. Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, the National Capital Housing Authority is hereby authorized to acquire sites for low-rent public housing projects assisted under the provisions of the United States Housing Act of 1937, as amended.
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA PARTICIPATION
SEC. 509. To make available to the District of Columbia, and to authorize the appropriate agencies operating therein to accept, the benefits provided by titles I and II of this Act, the District of Columbia Redevelopment Act of 1945 is hereby amended by renumbering sections 20, 21, and 22 thereof as sections 21, 22, and 23, respectively, and by adding after section 19 a new section to read as follows:
"Sec. 20. (a) As an alternative method of financing its authorized operations and functions under the provisions of this Act (in addition to that provided in section 16 of this Act), the Agency is hereby authorized and empowered to accept financial assistance from the Housing and Home Finance Administrator (here. after in this section referred to as the Administrator), in the form of advances of funds, loans, and capital grants, pursuant to title I of the Housing Act of 1949, to assist the Agency in acquiring real property for redevelopment of project areas and carrying out any functions authorized under this Act for which advances of funds, loans, or capital grants may be made to a local public agency under title I of the Housing Act of 1949, and the Agency, subject to the approval of the District Commissioners and subject to such terms, covenants, and conditions as may be prescribed by the Administrator pursuant to title I of the Housing Act of 1949, may enter into such contracts and agreements as may be necessary, convenient, or desirable for such purposes.
"(b) Subject to the approval of the District Commissioners, the Agency is authorized to accept from the Administrator advances of funds for surveys and plans in preparation of a project or projects authorized by this Act which may be assisted under title I of the Housing Act of 1949, and the Agency is authorized to transfer to the Planning Commission so much of the funds so advanced as the District Commissioners shall determine to be necessary for the Planning Commission to carry out its functions under this Act with respect to the project or projects to be assisted under title I of the Housing Act of 1949.
"(c) The District Commissioners are authorized to include in their annual estimates of appropriations items for administrative expenses which, in addition to
loan or other funds available therefor, are necessary for the Agency in carrying out its functions under this section.
"(d) Notwithstanding the limitation contained in the last sentence of section 110 (d) or in any other provision of title I of the Housing Act of 1949, the Administrator is authorized to allow and credit to the Agency such local grants-in-aid as are approvable pursuant to said section 110 (d) with respect to any project or projects undertaken by the Agency under a contract or contracts entered into under this section and assisted under title I of the Housing Act of 1949. In the event such local grants-in-aid as are so allowed by the Administrator are not sufficient to meet the requirements for local grants-in-aid pursuant to title I of the Housing Act of 1949, the District Commissioners are hereby authorized to enter into agreements with the Agency, upon which agreements the Administrator may rely, to make cash payments of such deficiencies from funds of the District of Columbia. The District Commissioners shall include items for such cash payments in their annual estimates of appropriations, and there are hereby authorized to be appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, the amounts necessary to provide for such cash payments. Any amounts due the Administrator pursuant to any such agreements shall be paid promptly from funds appropriated for such purpose.
"(e) All receipts of the Agency in connection with any project or projects financed in accordance with this section with assistance under title I of the Housing Act of 1949, whether in the form of advances of funds, loans, or capital grants made by the Administrator to the Agency, or in the form of proceeds, rentals, or revenues derived by the Agency from any such project or projects, shall be deposited in the Treasury of the United States to the credit of a special fund or funds, and all moneys in such special fund or funds are hereby made available for carrying out the purposes of this Act with respect to such project or projects, including the payment of any advances of funds or loans, together with interest thereon, made by the Administrator or by private sources to the Agency. Expenditures from such fund shall be audited, disbursed, and accounted for as are other funds of the District of Columbia.
"(f) With respect to any project or projects undertaken by the Agency which are financed in accordance with this section with assistance under title I of the Housing Act of 1949
‘(1) sections 3 (f), 3 (k), and 7 (g), and the last sentence of section 6 (b) (2) of this Act shall not be applicable to those pieces of real property which, in accordance with the approved project area redevelopment plan, are to be devoted to public housing to be undertaken under Public Law 307, Seventy-third Congress, approved June 12, 1934, as amended;
“(2) the site and use plan for the redevelopment of the area, included in the redevelopment plan of the project area pursuant to section 6 (b) (2) of this Act, shall include the approximate extent and location of any land within the area which is proposed to be used for public housing to be undertaken under Public Law 307, Seventy-third Congress, approved June 12, 1934, as amended;
"(3) notwithstanding any other provisions of this Act, the Agency, pursuant to section 7 (a) of this Act, shall have power to transfer to and shall at a practicable time or times transfer by deeds to the National Capital Housing Authority those pieces of real property which, in accordance with the approved project area redevelopment plan, are to be devoted to public housing to be undertaken under Public Law 307, Seventy-third Congress, approved June 12, 1934, as amended, and, in accordance with the requirements of section 107 of the Housing Act of 1949, the National Capital Housing Authority shall pay for the same out of any of its funds available for such acquisition. "(g) It is the purpose and intent of this section to authorize the District Commissioners and the appropriate agencies operating within the District of Columbia to do any and all things necessary to secure financial aid under title I of the Housing Act of 1949. The District of Columbia Redevelopment Land Agency is hereby declared to be a local public agency for all of the purposes of title I of the Housing Act of 1949. As such a local public agency for all of the purposes of title I of the Housing Act of 1949, the Agency is also authorized to borrow money from the Administrator or from private sources as contemplated by title I of the Housing Act of 1949, to issue its obligations evidencing such loans, and to pledge as security for the payment of such loans, and the interest thereon, the property, income, revenues, and other assets acquired in connection with the project or projects financed in accordance with this section with assistance under title I of the Housing Act of 1949, but such obligations or such pledge shall not constitute a debt or obligation of either the United States or of the District of Columbia.
“(h) Nothing contained in this section or in any other section of this Act shall relieve the Administrator of his responsibilities and duties under section 105 (c) or any other section of the Housing Act of 1949.”
31. Page 84, line 6, strike out "508" and insert in lieu thereof "510”; and on line 10 strike out "509" and insert in lieu thereof "511"
I. HISTORY OF THE LEGISLATION
HEARINGS ON BILL
H. R. 4009 is one of the large number of housing bills which have been referred to your committee on Banking and Currency during the first session of the Eighty-first Congress. The bill would establish a national housing policy, would provide Federal financial assistance for the clearance of slums, for low-rent public housing, and for rural housing, and would authorize a comprehensive program of housing research. These are, in substance, the unenacted provisions of housing legislation which, previously, have received extensive study by the Congress, have been passed three times by the Senate, and which were also approved last year by this committee in the Eightieth Congress (H. R. 6888, Rept. No. 2340). In view of the long con. sideration and widespread approval which these proposals had already received, and in view of the further fact that they are designed to meet several of the most urgent problem areas in the field of housing, it was the judgment of your committee that first attention should be directed to #. R. 4009 before taking up various other housing proposals consisting, in the main, of further improvements to financing aids for private housing.
Hearings on H. R. 4009 were held by your committee during the period
from April 7 through May 9. Your committee heard testimony by a great number of witnesses and was impressed not only by the overwhelming support of its provisions from spokesmen of a wide variety of citizen groups, but also by the increasing acceptance of its major objectives even by industry leaders who disagreed with detailed provisions.
In addition, your committee had the benefit of evidence gathered by several congressional committees over a period of five years regarding the nature of the housing problem and various solutions which have been proposed. These studies and findings are summarized in the following paragraphs.
In July 1945 the House Special Committee on Postwar Economic Policy and Planning submitted its report on Postwar Public Works and Construction. The conclusions of this special committee with respect to the matters covered by titles I and II of the bill now being favorably reported were as follows:
The Government should establish the legal basis upon which State and local jurisdictions may be encouraged to undertake a systematic program of community development in which the stimulation of low-rent housing occupies a major place. This program contemplates local initiative in construction, financing and operation. The responsibility of the Federal Government should be to provide incentives through the purchase of a percentage of the construction bonds, or yearly payments over a specified period to the local authorities of the difference between the income from rentals and the costs of operation, including interest and amortiza tion on capital indebtedness.
In 1946, during the second session of the Seventy-ninth Congress, the Senate, following recommendations both of its Committee on Banking and Currency and of the Subcommittee on Housing and Urban Redevelopment of the Senate Committee on Postwar Economic Policy and Planning, passed S. 1592, known as the WagnerEllender-Taft bill. The bill contained a declaration of national housing policy and objectives and provided for the establishment of a permanent over-all Federal Housing Agency, the continuance and improvement of Federal financing aids to encourage long-term mortgage financing, the establishment of Federal yield insurance for privately owned rental housing, the extension of Federal financial assistance for additional low-rent public housing under the United States Housing Act of 1937; the establishment of Federal financial assistance to help cities eliminate slums and blighted areas; the development of plans for an attack on deficiencies in farm housing and the authorization of a comprehensive Federal research program in housing.
In the House, the Banking and Currency Committee was unable to conclude hearings on S. 1592 before the adjournment of Congress.
Legislation closely parallelling the Wagner-Ellender Taft bill was introduced during the first session of the Eightieth Congress. Before acting on these bills, the Congress decided to conduct a further investigation of the housing problem. In July of 1947, the Eightieth Congress created the Joint Committee on Housing, consisting of seven members of this committee and an equal number from the Committee on Banking and Currency of the Senate. This committee held hearings in 33 cities in all sections of the country and received more than 6,000 printed pages of testimony. In addition, several of its members conducted special studies on specific aspects of the housing problem.
The legislative recommendations of the Joint Committee on Housing (H. Rept. 1564, 80th Cong., 2d sess.) corresponded closely with, and strongly supported, the major provisions of S. 1592 considered by the Seventy-ninth Congress, and of the successor bill S. 866 which was pending in the last Congress.
S. 866, Eightieth Congress, was modified to conform to the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Housing and was approved by the Senate in April 1948. The House Banking and Currency Committee held further extensive hearings from May 3 through June 8, 1948. At the conclusion of these hearings, this committee reported favorably H. R. 6888, a substantially similar bill. This bill, however, was tabled by the Committee on Rules.
In August of 1948, during the special session of the Congress called by the President, with comprehensive housing legislation as one of its principal purposes, the Congress enacted the Housing Act of 1948, which incorporated some of the provisions of the legislation, the history of which this report has traced. The enacted provisions included most of the private financing aids contained in the earlier legislation as well as a limited program for housing research directed at building codes and standardized measurements. However, the Housing Act of 1948 did not contain the proposed provisions of the earlier legislation for slum clearance, low-rent public housing, farm housing, or comprehensive housing research, nor did it contain provisions establishing national housing policy and objectives. The unenacted portions of these earlier comprehensive housing bills are the subjects covered by the major titles of the bill now being favorably reported by your committee.
II. MAJOR SUBJECTS COVERED BY H. R. 4009 Your committee is convinced, from the evidence presented during the recent hearings and made available from previous studies of the housing problem, that this bill, in combination with existing legislation, will provide a sound foundation for a comprehensive housing program. The bill covers five major subjects.
First, the bill would set forth a declaration by the Congress of our national housing objectives and the policies to be followed in attaining them. Such a declaration, your committee believes, is warranted by the importance of housing to the growth, wealth and security of the Nation.
Second, the bill would authorize Federal loans and grants to enable communities to make an effective start on the clearance of slums and blighted areas. The overwhelming evidence, both from the lack of progress generally throughout the country and the testimony presented to the committee, is that Federal financial assistance is essential if local communities are to deal effectively with this problem.
Third, the bill would authorize Federal financial assistance to communities in order that they may resume local programs of low-rent public housing. This assistance offers the only hope within the foreseeable future of providing adequate housing for urban and rural nonfarm families of low income who are inadequately housed.
Fourth, the bill would authorize a comprehensive program of technical research and studies in housing, directed particularly at obtaining progressive reductions in costs which now prevent private enterprise from serving a larger portion of the need.
Fifth, the bill would extend Federal financial assistance for the provision of decent housing for farm families who do not otherwise have means of obtaining adequate shelter.
Your committee recommends the enactment of H. R. 4009 as essential to any effective housing program which will contribute toward increasing and improving the general supply of housing throughout the country. Your committee does not claim that this legislation deals with all facets of the housing problem, either alone or in combination with legislation already enacted. During its hearings on H. R. 4009 the committee received many helpful suggestions as to additional legislation and has before it bills which deal with other phases of housing not covered in H. R. 4009.
III. THE HOUSING NEED
There is little disagreement that housing constitutes one of the Nation's most serious economic and social problems today.