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Service or station
Army Field Force facilities.
Third Army: Fort Benning, Ga.
Sixth Army: Fort Lewis, Wash.
Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md.
White Sands Proving Ġround, N. Mex.
Schenectady General Depot, N. Y
Sharpe General Depot, Calif.
Army Chemical Center, Md.
Midwest Chemical Depot, Ark
Medical Corps: St. Louis Medical Depot, Mo.
Eielson Air Force Base (Army).
Total military construction, Army..
$881, 000 (881, 000) (109, 000) (500, 000)
(272, 000) 19, 074, 759 (10, 280, 200) (2, 730, 000)
(243, 800) (150, 000) (647, 000)
(90, 000) (840, 000) (144, 000)
(225, 000) (2, 250, 000)
(500, 000) (2, 460, 400)
(933, 900) (749, 000)
(184, 900) (7,052, 659) (1, 551, 000) (3, 406, 159) (1, 544, 500)
(551, 000) (533, 000) (150, 000) (125, 000) 64, 993, 640 (29, 305, 640)
(978, 500) (16, 325, 000) (2, 796, 200) (9, 205, 940) 13, 688,000 22,000,000
235 236 238 240 242
84, 949, 399
ARMY FIELD FORCE FACILITIES
Mr. SHEPPARD. We will now take up item 220, Army Field Force facilities, where I see that you are asking for a total of $881,000.
FORT BENNING, GA. I see that the first sitem under project 220 is Fort Benning, Ga., where you are asking for $109,000. We will insert in the record at this point justification tables 6, 7, 8, and 9.
(The justification tables referred to are as follows:)
Fort Benning, Ga.
$2,000 10, 000 2, 000 14, 000 65, 000
2,000 14, 000
109, 000 phone system), $65,000 This project proposes the construction of a brick warehouse, 60 by 140 feet, for the storage of Signal Corps equipment.
DETAILED JUSTIFICATION OF PROJECTS
Gasoline station and pump house (with 1,000 gallon underground tank) (includes
$200 for construction oj administrative telephone system), $2,000. This project proposes the construction of a one-story, permanent type building of approximately 157 square feet. A small building to house auxiliary equipment and provide storage for oil, grease, and paint, and an underground tank and pump for gasoline is required in AFF Board No. 3 test area. Existing post facilities are 2 miles distant and use of these facilities results in loss of time, excessive use of gasoline, and transportation. A total of 27 authorized vehicles are assigned to the Board. There are normally several additional vehicles on hand for use in connection with tests. Underground tank and pump will be transferred from present location to the new building. Central heating plant and boiler room for test and shop area, (includes $300 for con
struction of administrative telephone system) $10,000 This building proposes the erection of a one-story, permanent type building, 25 feet 4 inches by 30 feet, with concrete foundation and floor, erection of an outside brick stack, and installation of low-pressure boiler and appurtenances.
The installation of a central heating plant in the test area will eliminate the necessity for individual space heaters in each building, thereby reducing the cost of fuel and labor. It will also materially reduce the fire hazard in the area and contribute to the health of the command. Target house, AFF Board No. 3, $2,000
This project proposes the construction of a one-story cinder block, permanent type building of approximately 168 square feet. This building is essential for storage of target material since the temporary type building presently used for that purpose is in poor condition and is uneconomical to maintain. This storage space would provide a more efficient operation for testing personnel experimenting with new and different types of targets as well as storage thereof. Building is minimum to meet requirements. Lavoratory building for test area, $14,000
This project proposes the construction of a one-story, permanent type building of approximately 915 square feet. The present facilities consist of a small T/0 type latrine on a concrete foundation, furnished with shower and toilets. The structure is in poor condition and is uneconomical to maintain. It is proposed that the present foundation and plumbing be utilized and that the building be made a permanent type, by the construction of new walls and roof. The majority of all tests are initiated and conducted in this area and it is considered essential to the health, comfort, and morale of testing personnel to provide adequate bathing facilities for use at the end of each day's work. No other toilet facilities exist in the area or in the adjacent areas. Administrative building for test shop area (includes $400 for the construction of
administrative telephone systems), $14,000 This project proposes the construction of a one-story permanent type fireproof building approximately 25 by 36 feet.
No office space presently exists in any building in the shop area. An office is essential for administrative control by the supply officer, shop foreman, and as an information center for members of the Board and authorized visitors. The supply officer and shop foreman are now occupying a room intended for and urgently required for storage. This building will also provide space for a guard room for the interior guard. The present building is of a temporary construction and has deteriorated to such an extent that it is uneconomical to maintain for other than storage purposes. Warehouse 60 by 140 feet, (includes $1,000 for construction of administrative teleThis will leave valuable equipment exposed to fire and theft. In addition, such type of storage is not economical nor conducive to efficient warehousing operations.
Due to the increased load on the post telephone system, additional equipment is being installed in the post signal offices and space formerly occupied by the clerical and administrative staff. This personnel will be moved to a section of the existing Signal Corps warehouse since there is no other suitable available space for these offices. As a result, valuable and critical Signal Corps equipment will have to be moved to a nearby overcrowded mobilization-type warehouse or on the outside.
The proposed size of this warehouse will provide for any future expansion of Signal Corps facilities. Deferment of this construction to a later date will result in a serious loss and damage of critical and expensive property. Magazines for storage of ammunition, $2,000
This project proposes the construction of two magazines for storage of ammunition, fuzes and other explosives, 8 by 12 feet with a floor area of 96 square feet. These magazines will be of masonry and metal construction (underground) with earth mound protection.
These magazines are essential to AFF Board No. 3 in order that this Board may perform its primary mission without undue expenditure of valuable time, labor, vehicles, and fuel. The post ammunition dump is approximately 9 miles from the AFF Board No. 3 test area. Regulations prohibit the storage of ammunition of large caliber except in standard magazines. Consequently, small lots of ammunition which are left over after each day of test firing must be transported to the post ammunition dump for storage. A return trip is necessary to pick it up the next morning. Present storage of small arms ammunition is made in three small steel casemates which are inadequate, and unsightly. Two magazines are considered essential for the storage of all types of ammunition, fuzes, and other types of explosives required for current test. These magazines will be constructed within the post area within the present limits of Fort Benning military reservation.
General NOLD. This was in the authorization bill. It consists of seven items-gasoline station and pump house; central heating plant and boiler room; target house, AFF Board No. 3; administrative building for test-shop area; warehouse; magazines for storage and ammunition and lavatory building for test area.
Each of those items, except the warehouse, applies particularly to the Army Field Forces Test Board No. 3.
Each of these cost estimates has been taken-and this applies hereafter-on our present experience in the market, and in general there has been added 15 percent for contingencies in view of the uncertain materials and labor market that faces us.
There is a gasoline station and pump house with a 1,000-gallon underground tank, $2,000.
Central heating plant and boiler room for test-shop area, $10,000.
ALLOWANCE FOR CONTINGENCIES
Mr. SIKES. Do I understand that you have increased the figures above actual present construction by 15 percent in order to meet possible increases in costs?
General Nold. That is correct, sir. Normally, we allow contingencies that vary from 1 or 2 percent up to 15 percent, depending upon the uncertainties of some of the design problems. In the normal presentation of a budget we have not had the funds to examine the subsoil conditions, and we allow that just as a normal and proper budgetary consideration. In this case we have reviewed it very carefully. Based on our experience within the United States and separately for overseas, we have reviewed it very carefully and feel that it
is a very modest contingency in view of the circumstances with which we are faced.
Mr. SIKES. Are these contracts to be let on a bid basis or upon a negotiated basis?
General Nold. They are to be let upon a competitive-bid basis until we are forced to do it otherwise.
Mr. SIKES. If you contractors know that you have a 15 percent spread in there, will they not take advantage of that in their bidding?
General Nold. They should not. The bidding is a competitive proposition.
Mr. Sikes. It appears to me that a 15 percent increase is a lot to add to the known cost. Does that apply throughout this bill?
General NOLD. That applies throughout. In our normal presentation we allow a contingency that may go up to 15 percent based upon the uncertainties of the actual construction difficulties in the field.
Mr. Sikes. Fifteen percent of $85,000,000 is about $13,000,000. That is a high addition which I am not sure is justified.
General Nold. In our judgment that is well warranted.
FUNDS RETURNED TO THE TREASURY
Mr. SIKES. What becomes of that money if you do not have to spend it?
General Nold. It is turned back to the Treasury or a new application is made for authority to apply it to another project.
Mr. SIKES. I do not seem to recall any of it being turned back to the Treasury. I do not say that it has not been. General NOLD. We turn back money every year.
Mr. Sikes. What has been the past history of these things? Has money been turned back to the Treasury from these funds?
General NOLD. Normally not, because the authorization usually runs considerably beyond the appropriation.
Mr. Sikes. In other words, it usually costs us 15 percent more than you people think it is going to cost to do these jobs?
General NOLD. No, sir.
General NOLD. As I stated, in normal times that is a maximum contingency that we allow. Sometimes it amounts to only 1 or 2 percent. In this case we are faced with certain scarce materials and rising prices, It is shown very clearly in the construction indexes of the country.
TYPE OF WORK CONTEMPLATED Mr. Sikes. How much of this $109,000 represents the construction of altogether new facilities and how much replacements?
General Nold. All except the warehouse will be new facilities The warehouse is a replacement.
Mr. SIKES. Is all of it essential to the operation?
CONTROL OVER CONSTRUCTION COSTS
Mr. PLUMLEY. From another source of information we learned yesterday that while the prime contractor sets the figure to which you
agree there is some question about your ability to control a possible rise in the cost by reason of these incidental rises to which referred, as shown by the indices. Is there any way by which in the long run, the costs could be kept down?
General Nold. I do not think, Mr. Plumley, I am in a position to advise any remedy at this time. In our current experience we are receiving bids that are satisfactory and within our estimates. The condition may change. If wages get out of control and the prices of materials get out of control, then we may have reluctant bidders. It may cost the Government money. At that time that will be the time to take a reading on the situation to see what should be done.
Mr. PLUMLEY. The situation cannot be foreseen; neither can the remedy, I take it?
General Nold. That is correct, sir.
PURPOSE OF WORK CONTEMPLATED
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. General, this item is not for the purpose of increasing our defense facilities in Alaska, or for emergency requirements in the Far East, is it?
General Nold. I think that is not a correct statement.
General Nold. It is not. This construction is for the support of our forces in the field. The activities of both the field forces board and the post are in direct support of our field activities.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. Pretty indirectly, are they not?
General Nold. Well, it is a matter of opinion. It is a matter of judgment whether they are direct or indirect.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. This is not an item to support the accelerated research and development program within the continental United States, is it?
General NOLD. Yes. Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. How? General Nold. That is the work of the Army Field Forces Board No. 3.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. What type of work is that board doing?
General NoLD. They run field service tests and advise the research and development people of additional laboratory work or additional designs that are required to meet a given requirement for a weapon, or for transportation.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. I thought this was an infantry center, including an infantry school.
General Nold. Primarily they are concerned with light weapons. That is a definite responsibility of the board. It is a function also of the school.
Mr. WIGGLESWORTH. Is it not primarily an infantry center?
General BARRIGER. If I may attempt to clear this up, sir, the Field Force Board gets an item which has been produced, and that has to be field tested, and in the field test they develop any bugs in that weapon or piece of equipment and then that equipment has to be modified, refined in part, and that sort of thing, before it can be issued to the troops to determine whether it will actually work in the field. That board handles primarily infantry weapons and equipment.