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MARTIN B. MADDEN, Illinois, Chairman CHARLES R. DAVIS, Minnesota.
FRANK H. FUNK, Ilinois. DANIEL R. ANTHONY, JR., Kansas.
JOHN TABER, New York. WILLIAM 8. VARE, Pennsylvania.
MAURICE H. THATCHER, Kentucky. SYDNEY ANDERSON, Minnesota.
JOSEPH W. BYRNS, Tennessee. WILLIAM R. WOOD, Indiana.
JAMES P. BUCHANAN, Texas. LOUIS C. CRAMTON, Michigan.
JAMES A. GALLIVAN, Massachusetts. EDWARD H. WASON, New Hampshire.
JAMES F. BYRNES, South Carolina. WALTER W. MAGEE, New York.
GORDON LEE, Georgia. GEORGE HOLDEN TINKHAM, Massachusetts. BEN JOHNSON, Kentucky. BURTON L. FRENCH, Idaho.
CHARLES D. CARTER, Oklahoma. MILTON W. SHREVE, Pennsylvania
EDWARD T. TAYLOR, Colorado. L, J. DICKINSON, Iowa.
WILLIAM B. OLIVER, Alabama. FRANK MURPHY, Ohio.
ANTHONY J. GRIFFIN, New York. JOHN W. SUMMERS, Washington.
THOMAS W. HARRISON, Virginia. HENRY E. BARBOUR, California.
JOHN N. SANDLIN, Louisiana. ERNEST R. ACKERMAN, New Jersey.
JOHN J. EAGAN, New Jersey. GUY U. HARDY, Colorado.
WILLIAM A. AYRES, Kansas.
MARCELLUS C. SHEILD, Clerk
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
DEC 18 1936
DIVISION OF DOCUMENTS
INTERIOR DEPARTMENT APPROPRIATION BILL, 1926
HEARINGS CONDUCTED BY THE SUBCOMMITTEE, MESSRS. LOUIS C. CRAMTON (CHAIRMAN), FRANK MURPHY, BURTON L. FRENCH, CHARLES D. CARTER, AND EDWARD T. TAYLOR, OF THE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, IN CHARGE OF THE INTERIOR DEPARTMENT APPROPRIATION BILL FOR 1926, ON THE DAYS FOLLOWING, NAMELY:
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 1924.
PLAN AND SCOPE OF HEARING
Mr. CRAMTOS. We will open our hearings this morning on the fourth annual Interior Department appropriation bill. This is the fourth year that appropriations for that department have been provided for in one bill exclusively devoted to that department.
We have before us the estimates that have been approved by the Office of the Budget and the President. The conditions in the Treasury, while improved, still emphasize the need of every possible administrative economy, because of the demand of the country for further reductions in taxes, and reductions in taxes are only made possible by reductions in Government expenditures.
It continues to be the policy of the Committee on Appropriations, as it has been for the past several years, to cooperate with the Executive to the fullest extent possible in reducing the costs of government. In carrying out this policy of economy, it is the general policy of the Committee on Appropriations to sustain the Budget in every way possible. We recognize that the Budget is an agency which, while an instrument operating under the Executive, was created by Congress to accomplish economy, and it is safe to say that without this agency and the thorough support given it by Congress the remarkable accomplishments in economy of administration that have characterized our Government in the last few years would not have been possible. Therefore, in the making up of the various appropriation bills this year, I understand it to be the general policy of the Committee on Appropriations to hold to the figures carried in the Budget, seldom, if ever, increasing them, but welcoming every opportunity to reduce them.
The bill that is before us for the Interior Department never was inflated in its amounts as were those of some other departments of the Government, as the war-time period did not serve to increase the expenditures of this department as was the case in other departments.
For the last three years or more, there has been a constant reduction in the cost of administering this department. I think it is only fair to say that the present head of that department, Secretary Work, has distinguished himself by his efforts to secure both efficiency and economy in the greatest degree possible. He has had very full cooperation from this committee in reducing items wherever possible.
The bill before us is a composite effect of those labors of Secretary Work, the Bureau of the Budget, and this committee for three years. To what further extent reductions are possible remains to be seen. Personally, I have not had opportunity as yet to run through, even superficially, all the estimates for the department. We are opening the hearings at this time in advance of the formal publication of the estimates and in advance of the opening of the session of Congress which comes on the first Monday of December.
We are doing this because of the desire of the Committee on Appropriations to serve the House and the convenience of the House. The next session being the short session, if the appropriation bills are to receive that careful and painstaking consideration in the House that they are entitled to, work should begin upon them as early as possible.
Therefore, under the energetic leadership of Chairman Madden, the committee is attempting to have its work well under way when Congress opens. This bill, being one of the early ones upon the schedule of the committee, has necessitated this subcommittee beginning its labors at this time.
I want to express my appreciation to the Secretary and to the various heads of bureaus and institutions who have, all of them, made a special effort to assist in the presentation of the data so promptly after final action on the estimates by the Budget and who have thereby made it possible for us to take up the hearings at this time.
Mr. Secretary, as you know, it has been our custom to honor these hearings by a preliminary general statement by the head of the department. Hence, we have asked you again to come here this morning.
I perhaps might add this observation: The money to be expended next year—that is, the question of how much it should be and how it is to be expended-is to a considerable degree intertwined with how the money was spent this year and how much was spent last year. So that, in conducting these hearings, it has always been my desire that they should contain considerable information as to the activities of the department in order that Members of the House might learn through these hearings, if they desire, considerable about the work that is being done by this great department.
It is a great, constructive department and its work is of great importance. There are many Members of the House who are exceedingly interested in its work, and in the main it is only through the hearings held in connection with the annual appropriation bill that the question of expenditure is gone into.
In this general preliminary statement that you will present, Mr. Secretary, we are at your service and are glad to hear from you anything you desire to present as to the work of the department gen