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interest, we submit, is adequately protected by the implications of the phrase “just compensation." However, we realize that the present language of the law and the probable attitude of the Congress toward problems of this kind might render difficult the elimination of the suggested limitation. Nevertheless, we desire to register our protest against the suggested limitation on the compensation of shipowners.
There is one way, however, whereby Congress can make it clear that the only restriction as to the elements of just compensation will be the “causes necessitating the taking or use.' We suggest that section 902 be amended at the end of line 10, page 3, by inserting the word "immediate," so that beginning in the middle of line 9 the section would read : “But in no case shall the value of the property taken or used be deemed enhanced by the immediate causes necessitating the taking or use." I am informed that this proposal is not objectionable to Government officials who have been interested in this legislation.
At the hearing I indicated that the present language of section 902 was unnecessarily broad in that the requisition power would become operative not only when the President proclaimed “that the security of the national defense makes it advisable,” but also “during any national emergency declared by proclamation of the President.” The members of the institute feel that such grant of power goes far beyond the national needs. The security of the national defense is in itself a very broad term. Under this language war need not be imminent. Whatever requisitioning might be judged essential to a wise course of preparation would be justified by this liberal language. The words “national emergency” are not capable of much specification. Such language might be taken to include any abnormal situation affecting maritime commerce. It is submitted that this is a dangerous power which, if improperly used, might become a vehicle of oppression. Moreover, it would seem that to impose this risk upon the shipping business in contradistinction to the general war powers of the National Government to which all industries are subject is an additional case of unfair discrimination.
Let me repeat again that while we feel very strongly on the points I have outlined, we regard the fair-mindedness of the governmental agencies as deserying of commendation. Respectfully yours,
JOHN J. BURNS, General Counsel. Mr. BURNS. Thank you.
The CHAIRMAN. Is there anyone else who wants to be heard on this particular bill?
Commander MURPHY. If you are going to take this up again in executive session
The CHAIRMAN (interposing). I had your name down, but had not called you because we are going to have you here in the executive hearing. If you desire to do so, you have heard the questions of Mr. Oliver and you might amplify those questions and discuss that in your brief, or we can have that in executive session.
Commander MURPHY. I think it might be better to take it up in executive session.
Y 4.M 53: V 63/9
C.1 Requisitioning of vess
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