« PreviousContinue »
Mr. MEGILL. As a matter of fact, remodeling work of the two new buildings has not been authorized. It was suspended until the completion of the new building and was discussed in the House of Representatives.
Mr. STEED. The Architect will have to verify this?
Mr. ROBERTS. You mean when they complete the new building they will put in this new furniture and we will have the old ?
Mr. STEED. The last time I was talking to them we were told that enough of the new building would be ready by the first of this year so they could move enough Members out of one wing of the building and I think they intend to do that remodeling piecemeal.
If they did that, that would release the furniture in the office of that wing to be remodeled and if that comes in in the next fiscal year, it ought to give you some relief on the tight furniture situation you find yourself in.
Somewhere down the road it ought to give you some relief? Mr. MEGILL. Mr. Chairman, the completion of some space in the new building does not contemplate that?
Mr. STEED. Yes, the west section of that building is expected to be ready for occupancy a considerable time before the entire building is finished. The anticipation was that probably within a year or a little more a considerable number of Members could move into the new building on the west side, which would relieve some space in one of the old buildings to give them an earlier start on the remodeling since they have to do that piecemeal and in stages anyway.
I do not know what the time schedule on this is, but it is getting to where I do not think there is much more than a year to wait. The impact of that ought to be of some assistance in this other matter of releasing some furniture that is presently needed and I assume that the new offices in the new building will be furnished with new furniture.
Mr. MEGILL. As I understood it, until the chairman made his explanation, offices in one side of the Old House Office Building were to be taken out and moved into the Congressional Hotel
Mr. STEED. That was suspended so now the method of doing, as I last heard the plan, that would be to move Members into the new west section of the new building as soon as that is ready, which would be several months ahead of the completion of the entire building.
I think it was figured that by the end of this year the new building would be far enough advanced so that it might offer an opportunity for some Members to start moving into the west section of it, which is getting fairly close to completion.
Mr. ROBERTS. I heard a rumor, Mr. Chairman, that when that happens, the Members who stay in the old building will be given three rooms instead of two rooms. If they are, they will require furniture for those rooms.
Mr. STEED. Eventually you would have to move it all back in again.
First, they are going to have to have some place for all of the Members in one wing to move out so that that whole thing would be remodeled at one time. When that is finished, only two-thirds as many can move back into the wing as moved out because there will be only two offices where there are now three.
Mr. MEGILL. Your suggestion might make a temporary relief in the need for furniture, but as the Clerk pointed out, you would still need the same quantity after the remodeling.
Mr. STEED. Do you think your furniture problem will be with us always?
Mr. MEGILL. Yes, sir.
Mr. HORAN. Mr. Chairman, your point is that maybe we should adjust their furniture item since it covers all of fiscal 1963 ?
Mr. STEED. I was trying to find out if we are near enough to this other stage to take advantage of it, but only the Architect, I think, could give us that answer.
Mr. HORAN. We should ask him when he is here.
Mr. MEGILL. In the normal operation of the offices, there is tremendous pressure on the Clerk to give additional equipment in the rooms now in existence and that is what is occasioning this shortage in furniture and repairs. The Capitol extension, while it brings in new furniture, moves Members and committees out from the old section and certain spots have to be refurbished by the Clerk and additional furniture will be required. The Clerk could give illustrations of that to the committee.
Mr. STEED. I have not made any investigation as to the validity of it, but I have heard one or two Members make comments about deterioration or worn spots on the rugs inside the House Chamber itself.
Mr. ROBERTS. They patched it last December but I think within another year we will have to replace the entire carpet on the floor.
Mr. STEED. Does it seem that replacement of the whole thing is going to be more satisfactory than trying to patch it?
Mr. MEGILL. I think it is beyond repair myself, Mr. Chairman. In observing the repair work already done, it is approaching a rather unsightly condition for the Chamber. It should be completely replaced.
Mr. STEED. I have heard them make comments, not in a serious way but
Mr. MEGILL. The Clerk would have to do that out of this fund, too, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. STEED. As an educated guess, recarpeting the House Chamber would involve how much money?
Mr. ROBERTS. The Architect furnished that carpet the last time and I do not know how much yardage is on the floor."
Mr. MEGILL. We could supply the figure for you, Mr. Chairman. (The information is as follows:)
It would take approximately 1,550 linear yards to replace the carpet on the floor of the House. There are 88 square yards in the American oriental rug in the Speaker's lobby. The cost to install the carpet now on the House floor was $17.582.46. A fair estimate to replace both the carpet on the floor of the House and the rug in the Speaker's lobby would be $20,000.
Mr. ROBERTS. If we had the yardage we could multiply it by $15 and come to an approximate estimate.
I have a figure on furniture, Mr. Chairman. This figure is as of March 22. For furniture and equipment we have, $20,795; in that fund, that is for remainder for this year.
Mr. STEED. Could you give us a breakdown of the categories there and compare it?
Mr. ROBERTS. That is for furniture, supplies, materials, $3,800; carpeting, $5,000; repair to carpets, $275; breakage, $470, and $337 for packing boxes which is overdrawn now. We can reallocate these other items and make out very well for the rest of this year, but next year I think we
Mr. STEED. The one item you are in a bind on is the furniture item itself?
Mr. ROBERTS. That is right.
We have made allocations for supplies and materials and carpeting which we can reallocate and use for furniture, if we have to.
Mr. STEED. As to furniture, is that mostly in desks or is it desks and chairs?
Mr. ROBERTS. Desks and file cabinets. We spend more money for file cabinets than anything else, as well as typists chairs. Those are the three big items.
Mr. STEED. I have had some Members mention the fact they have been needing filing cabinets.
Mr. ROBERTS. We never seem to be able to meet the demand, Mr. Chairman. I do not know how many I bought. There are never enough no matter how much we try to hold it down, we cannot supply enough.
Mr. MEGILL. The clerk means that they are assigned to the offices and many times the Members will just transfer the metal equipment into the storeroom rather than using temporary equipment. That way they use up a great deal of the supply of file cabinets.
Mr. STEED. You think all of the Members have the same problem with the mail and volume of work, do you? It just goes up and up!
Mr. ROBERTS. Further, I think we are current on requests for file cabinets. I think we have supplied all of those requests.
Mr. MEGILL. The increase in the number of employees as reflected by this resolution and the action of the House multiplies by 438 each item in this category; you provide a desk for each employee and you provide a typist chair. This absorbs the funds to a larger degree than prior to the authority for making these appointments.
Mr. STEED. Mr. Horan, do you have any questions?
ply, are you?
Mr. ROBERTS. Almost. I think I have about 12 or 15 requests for desks but I think we are current on the file cabinets.
Mr. HORAN. I had a request in for a side desk a long while and it finally showed up the other day.
Mr. MEGILL. A typist desk?
Mr. HORAN. Yes. It was a desk that we actually use for filing the congressional quarterly on, where it is handy to all of the folks in my office.
Could I inquire as to these personal services? They are at your discretion?
Mr. ROBERTS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HORAN. You have a reserve of $22,295 just for this? What have you used that reserve for?
Mr. ROBERTS. As a matter of fact, Mr. Horan, that should be $5,000 less because I have an administrative assistant paid by voucher each month; it runs about $400 per month. If I continue this employee this item will be reduced by about $5,000.
There are two vacancies that have caused a surplus also. Mr. HARPER. We have some finisher sprayers and an assistant finisher position vacant.
Mr. HORAN. How do you reduce that $22,295 to $4,000?
Mr. ROBERTS. If he were carried on the rolls for a year it would be a $5,000 job.
Mr. HORAN. Supply for the record that information so it is in the transcript for our use.
Mr. HARPER. It is a $2,000 base rate.
The three vacant positions plus the administrative assistant referred to by the Clerk carry salaries totaling $21,131 annually, which would reduce the surplus to $1,164.
MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS Mr. STEED. We will now go to the next item, “Miscellaneous items."
Mr. ROBERT. It was necessary for the Clerk's Office to set up 30 various allocations, for miscellaneous items covering the appropriation of $2,550,000.
We submit for the record a statement listing these 30 allocations showing the amount of each allocation, the amount expended to February 28, 1962, and the balance remaining as of March 1, 1962. Although, in reality, the expenditures only cover obligations up to the end of January 1962, or even earlier in some cases, as a great many of these monthly bills have not yet been submitted for payment and, accordingly, such payments are not reflected on this statement. These figures—that is, the amounts allocated—are more or less arbitrary and, if necessary, must be changed from time to time during the fiscal year as conditions may require. It is impossible to forecast at the beginning or, for that matter, during the fiscal year, the exact amount which may be necessary for each allocation.
Mr. STEED. It will be made a part of the record. (The table follows:)
Miscellaneous items, 1962—July 1, 1961, to Feb. 28, 1962
Mr. ROBERTS. These allocations will be taken up in their order and explained briefly as follows:
(1) Miscellaneous equipment, supplies and materials, such as hand towels, paper towels, paper cups, toilet paper, soap, cleaning powder, cleaning equipment, and any other miscellaneous articles that may be required.
(1A) Photostatic and duplication work, including Members' identification cards.
(13) Official blank checks for the use of the Clerk's Office and the Office of the Sergeant at Arms.
(10) Special office equipment, maintenance and repairs.
(5) Laundry service, including hand towels, for the House side of the Capitol, and both House Office Buildings.
(6) Covers gratuities, as authorized by the Legislative Appropriation Act of 1955.
(7) Miscellaneous payrolls by House resolutions, payable out of the contingent fund of the House, until otherwise provided by law.
(8) Material for folding, in handling speeches, pamphlets, and
(9) Payment of premiums on official bonds required for the protection of the offices and personnel of the Sergeant at Arms, the Clerk of the House, and Postmaster.