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The Public Health Service and its functions shall be administered by the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service under the direction and supervision of the Federal Security Administrator.
All the functions of the Secretary of the Treasury—
who formerly controlled the Public Health Service
relating to the administration of the Public Health Service
except certain functions as to gifts
are hereby transferred to, and shall be exercised by, the Federal Security Administrator.
So that, while there are preserved in the new plan the present duties of the Surgeon General, it seems to me the new Secretary is going to have complete direction and supervision over his activities so that you do not have anything like an independent department of health, that is, even with the improvements that have been made over the act of last year.
We have had experience with the Federal Security Administration. We know that Dr. Parran resigned from the Public Health Service largely because he did not like the interference and the pressure that came from the Federal Security Administration. We know that Studebaker resigned from the Office of Education because he felt that the Federal Security Administrator was bossing him and telling him. how he had to do his job in education. This certainly does not change the existing powers of the Federal Security Administration, but transfers them to the new Secretary with still greater prestige.
So, Mr. Chairman, my opposition to the plan is related, first, to the fact that it is not in accord with the Hoover plan; and, second, that it does not establish what I think is necessary if you should want to combine these different functions. It does not establish an inde.pendent department or division of Health as provided in the original Taft-Fulbright bill. It retains, it seems to me, all of the things that I have been trying to get away from-the domination of Health by a Welfare Administrator for welfare purposes, with all of the idea of social insurance and all of the features of the general so-called welfare policy. It subjects to that the operation of the health functions of the Federal Government, and the new functions on health that are assumed; whereas, I feel that those functions should be an independent or practically independent operation.
We have had this business of figuring out the reasonable independence of the Navy and the Army and the Air Force in the Armed Forces, but there there is a need for coordination. It is an administrative body in which you have got one main function to accomplish, with different agencies. Here, these functions seem to me entirely different functions. They are in a related field, they are in the general field of improving the condition of the people in health, and educating them, and so forth. But it seems to me that they are independent functions and that there is no necessity whatever for unifying them. There is a very strong reason, I believe, for maintaining the independence of the health activities of the Federal Government. I do not consider that this plan does it. While it is a slight improvement over the plan last year, fundamentally it does not establish anything like independence for a health department of the Government.
The CHAIRMAN. Are there any questions?
Senator BENTON. I am terribly interested in Senator Taft's statement. Do we not have examples, however, in the Federal Government, where even more diverse departments are grouped for administrative purposes under one central administrator, such, for instance, as the Department of Commerce, Senator Taft, where you have Civil Aeronautics Board and the Patent Office, which surely do not have much to do with each other, and then you add the Census and the Bureau of Foreign and Domestic Commerce and the whole long group? You can start with the Interior Department or almost any one of the departments, it would seem to me, and you would have a criticism similar to one of the points that you made. That is the only comment I have on your testimony.
Senator TAFT. That is quite true. Personally, while I say I prefer to follow the Hoover plan with a separate Medical Administration, I said I do not greatly object to grouping them. I only do object, however, to a set-up which traditionally and in fact will subject Health to Welfare, and to a large overhead organization which will be primarily approached from a welfare standpoint.
Senator BENTON. I only asked the question to determine whether that is the important point.
Senator TAFT. I introduced a bill to put them together, so I do not object to grouping them, providing you reserve in each case their independence. In the case of the Civil Aeronautics Board, I think it is important to retain the independence of that Board so far as its judicial functions are concerned, and not have the Secretary of Commerce stepping in and telling them every minute how they have got to run their show.
I would like to put in the record, Mr. Chairman-I think that it should be put in to make the record complete a copy of Reorganization Plan No. 1 of July 1, 1939. It does not have to be the whole plan. It is only the title of the plan dealing with the Federal Security Agency.
The CHAIRMAN. That may be inserted in the record.
(The excerpts referred to follow :)
REORGANIZATION PLAN No. 1
Effective July 1, 1939
UNDER PART 2-FEDERAL SECURITY AGENCY
SEC. 201. Federal Security Agency.-(a) * * * He shall have general direction and supervision over the administration of the several agencies consolidated into the Federal Security Agency by this section and shall be responsible for the coordination of their functions and activities.
SEC. 205. Public Health Service.-(a) The Public Health Service and its functions shall be administered by the Surgeon General of the Public Health Service under the direction and supervision of the Federal Security Administrator.
(b) All the functions of the Secretary of the Treasury relating to the administration of the Public Health Service, except those functions relating to the acceptance and investment of gifts as authorized by sections 23 (b) and 137 (e), title 42, United States Code, are hereby transferred to, and shall be exercised by, the Federal Security Administrator.
Senator IVES. I wanted to make one thing clear. Did I understand, Senator Taft, that you recommend a separate Department of Health?
Senator TAFT. I introduced, 3 or 4 years ago, first, a separate bill. The bill I introduced provided for a separate Bureau of HealthI forget what we called it, but it was an independent Health Administration. Then later in the same year I introduced, with Senator Fulbright, a bill for a department of all three, but retaining practically all of the independent and autonomous functions of the Bureau of Health bill that we introduced, but grouping it for grouping purposes under the new department.
I do not care which way you do it, personally, so far as I am concerned, only I think the important fundamental question is to keep the health department practically an independent department administered for health, and not subject it as to every detail of its operation, its personnel and every administrative function, to this big overhead organization, which inevitably is going to be predominantly a welfare department-that is as I see it--with a Secretary, and Under Secretary, and Assistant Secretary, and Assistant Secretary for Administration, and a combination of every function except what they call the professional functions of the Surgeon General. I do not know exactly what the professional functions of the Surgeon General are, but it seems to me that if you read the whole set-up, it will be perfectly clear that the Surgeon General is going to be a pretty small potato in the whole show, and that health is going to be subject to whatever the general tendency of the Department is.
I think Education, too, ought to be practically autonomous if we have such a plan. In my objection I have specified Health, but I have just as strong an objection to subjecting the Director of Education to this big overhead organization and telling him what he has to do. It seems to me Education certainly is entitled to an autonomous Director to determine the education policy of the Federal Government. That is the reason that this plan does not accord with my original bill, nor does it accord with the Hoover recommendations.
Senator MUNDT. I was going to ask a question about education. It seems to me that it is of primary importance, as a former educator. It seems to me that inevitably the important relation in this whole program is going to be education. I think even the doctors and the medical fraternity will do a better job getting themselves recognized than the teachers of America.
At one time I went around the country quite a bit talking in favor of a Department of Education, per se, and for that I could vote. But it seems to me that merging it in here with a great, strong welfare organization, we recognize that instead of making headway from the standpoint of education, we are going to be receding. We are going to see the same thing that happened in the Department of the Interior with the Indian Bureau. Anybody who has had any experience there, trying to get anything done for the Indians, recognizes that you can scarcely find the Indian Office down there, and there is no recognition to them at all. The Indian is inarticulate, as the teachers are pretty much inarticulate. I think that this would be a pretty serious setback educationwise, by making this change. I would be very happy to have you touch on it.
Senator TAFT. You see, in the Army and Navy, as I say, they at least have a Secretary of the Army and a Secretary of the Navy and a Secretary of the Air Force. Whether they are in the Cabinet or not
seems to be an open question. But we could have here a Secretary of Health, and Secretary of Education, and Secretary of Welfare, with one over-all Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare to sit in the Cabinet.
Senator MUNDT. And with a clear line of responsibility and a clear line of authority. But to subjugate education below welfare in a program of this kind, or to mix it with it-because I do not like the welfare concept as far as education is concerned, and that is not the purpose of education, and you get that paternalistic ideology mixed up with education. If we have that, we are going to move sharply in the direction of Federal control of education, I am convinced that that will happen, in an effort to color the whole education field.
The CHAIRMAN. Any further statement, Senator Taft?
The CHAIRMAN. The committee thanks you very much for your testimony, and we are very glad to have your views.
Senator TAFT. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. The next witness is Senator Hendrickson.
STATEMENT OF HON. ROBERT C. HENDRICKSON, A UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY
Senator HENDRICKSON. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, I am, of course, most grateful to you and to the entire committee for the opportunity to appear before you this morning in support of Senate Resolution 302 to disapprove Reorganization Plan 27 of 1950. My statement will, I assure you, be brief, for I see no need for reinterating the arguments already made against this proposal. However, I do feel that I should submit for the record a few of the reasons which impelled me to join in sponsoring Senate Resolution 302 on June 22.
In the first place, Mr. Chairman, there has been an effort to clothe all of these reorganization plans during the past 18 months in the appealing wraps of the Hoover Commission. In the case of plan No. 27, this is so patently false and misleading that it deserves no more than passing reference, it conflicts so boldly with the explicit recommendations of the Commission. Senator Taft has already covered that field, and I did not hear all of his testimony, but I heard enough of it to know that he had covered those conflicts.
Even worse, it does, I feel, mortgage the possibility of establishing a separate health agency at any future time, for we are well aware of the fact that action in this field during the Eighty-first Congress would, to all intents and purposes, preclude any further reorganization for years to come.
While I am not one of those who see ghosts behind every door, nor do I agree completely with those Cassandras who predict complete ruin every time Congress takes some action they hold to be unfriendly to their own interest, I am not certain in my own mind that plan No. 27 will effect any substantial economies nor is it apt to put into operation any administrative reforms. As a matter of fact, I am convinced that not one dollar will be saved by elevating the Federal Security Agency to departmental status, and the proposed Department of Health, Education, and Security will be as unwieldly as its name implies, as Senator Taft has indicated.
I want to say that I was very much impressed with the observations that the distinguished Senator from South Dakota made with respect to the Department of Education. If this is so, there is, then, absolutely no reason at all for allowing plan No. 27 to go into operation.
I am certain that this committee will carefully study all aspects of this plan and recommend that the Senate vote to disapprove plan No. 27.
Mr. Chairman, that is all that I have to say on the subject.
Senator MUNDT. I have no questions, but I associate myself completely with the argument that has been made. I think it is very helpful and very sound.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much, Senator.
Senator HENDRICKSON. Thank you very much, gentlemen.
The CHAIRMAN. Is Senator Knowland present?
Senator Alexander Smith is not present, as I understand. He has submitted a statement, a brief statement, which the chairman will direct be printed in the record at this point.
(The statement referred to follows:)
STATEMENT OF HON. H. ALEXANDER SMITH, A UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY
Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I wish to state briefly why I joined in sponsoring Senate Resolution 302, to disapprove the President's Reorganization Plan No. 27, and why I urge you to take favorable action on this resolution.
Last year the Senate rejected plan No. 1, which was very similar to the present plan in that it would have established a new Cabinet department embracing the fields of health, education, and security. I voted against that plan because it ignored what I considered the very well informed recommendations of the Hoover Commission in favor of an administrative separation between the field of health, on the one hand, and the fields of education and security, on the other.
The Hoover Commission did recommend establishment of a Cabinet department embracing education, security, and Indian affairs. It also recommended the establishment of a United Medical Administration as a separate agency, embracing the functions of the Public Health Service and the overlapping hospital programs of several Government agencies. In this connection the Hoover Commission report on medical activities found that "only the creation of a United Medical Administration can remedy the weaknesses of the present organization and give the leadership, direction, and planning urgently needed."
I realize that the President, in his message accompanying plan No. 27, stated the view that "the adoption of this plan will not in any way interfere with further adjustments in the functions of the new Department either by statute or reorganization plan." I canno agree with this view. It would seem to me entirely inconsistent to favor the crea ion of a Cabinet Department embracing health as one of its major fields, while simultaneously supporting the view that health functions should be separate from the others.
In my judgment approval of plan No. 27 would be particularly ill-timed in light of the fact that committees in both Houses are giving active consideration to a bill establishing a United Medical Administration as recommended by the Hoover Commission. Hearings on such a bill, H. R. 5182, are now in progress before the House Committee on Expenditures in the Executive Departments, and hearings on S. 2008, whose purpose is the same, are scheduled to begin on July 10 before the Committee on Labor and Public Welfare, of which I am a member. I feel that approval of plan No. 27 would seriously prejudice further consideration of the United Medical Administration proposal, which was one of the boldest proposals that the Hoover Commission made.
In addition to these reasons, which in general applied to plan No. 1 of 1949 as much as they do to plan No. 27 of 1950, there is another strong objection to plan No. 27 which was not present in the plan last year. I refer to the provision by which statutory authority would continue to be vested in the Surgeon. General and the Commissioner of Education, instead of in the head of the Department. If a department is to be established at all, it should be established in line with