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MEMBERS OF THE SUBCOMMITTEE
GLENN GRISWOLD, Indiana, Chairman JOHN LESINSKI, Michigan
VITO MARCANTONIO, New York MARCELLUS H. EVANS, New York GEORGE J. SCHNEIDER, Wisconsin
RELATING TO LABOR PRACTICES OF EMPLOYERS OF
LABOR IN THE SHIPBUILDING INDUSTRY
FRIDAY, JULY 19, 1935
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D. C. The subcommittee met at 10:30 a. m., Hon. Glenn Griswold presiding
Mr. GRISWOLD. The committee will come to order. It is the intention to hold hearings on House Joint Resolution 331, introduced by Mr. Kenney, of New Jersey, “ To authorize the Secretary of Labor to appoint a board of inquiry to ascertain the facts relating to labor practices of employers of labor in the shipbuilding industry.”
(Said House joint resolution is as follows:)
[H. J. Res. 331, 74th Cong., 1st sess, ]
JOINT RESOLUTION To authorize the Secretary of Labor to appoint a Board of Inquiry
to ascertain the facts relating to the labor practices of employers of labor in the shipbuilding industry
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That (1) the Secretary of Labor shall immediately appoint a Board of Inquiry to make a prompt and thorough investigation of all facts relating to the labor practices of employers of labor engaged in the shipbuilding industry.
(2) The Board, or its duly authorized agents or agencies, shall at all reasonable times have access to, for the purpose of examination, and the right to copy any evidence of any person being investigated or proceeded against that relates to any matter under investigation or in question. Any member of the Board shall have power to issue subpenas requiring the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of any evidence that relates to any matter under investigation or in question before the Board, its member, agent, or agency conducting the hearing or investigation. Any member of the Board, or any agent or agency designated by the Board for such purposes, may administer oaths and affirmations, examine witnesses, and receive evidence. Such attendance of witnesses and the production of such evidence may be required from any place in the United States or any Territory or possession thereof at any designated place of hearing.
(3) In case of contumacy or refusal to obey a subpena issued to any person, any District Court of the United States or the United States courts of any Territory or possession, or the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia, within the jurisdiction of which the inquiry is carried on or within the jurisdiction of which said person guilty of contumacy or refusal to obey is found or resides or transacts business, upon application by the Board, shall have jurisdiction to issue to such person an order requiring such person to appear before the Board, its member, agent, or agency, there to produce evidence if so ordered, or there to give testimony touching the matter under investigation or in question; and any failure to obey such order of the court may be punished by said court as a contempt thereof.
(4) No person shall be excused from attending and testifying or from producing books, records, correspondence, documents, or other evidence in obedi.
ence to the subpena of the Board on the ground that the testimony or evidence required of him may tend to incriminate him or subject him to a penalty or forfeiture; but no individual shall be prosecuted or subjected to any penalty or forfeiture for or on account of any transaction, matter, or thing concerning which he is compelled, after having claimed his privilege against self-incrimination, to testify or produce evidence, except that such individual so testifying shall not be exempt from prosecution and punishment for perjury committed in so testifying.
(5) Complaints, orders, and other process and papers of the Board, its member, agent, or agency, may be served either personally or by registered mail or by telegraph or by leaving a copy thereof at the principal office or place of business of the person required to be served. The verified return by the individual so serving the same setting forth the manner of such service shall be proof of the same, and the return post-office receipt or telegraph receipt therefor when registered and mailed or telegraphed as aforesaid shall be proof of service of the same. Witnesses summoned before the Board, its member, agent, or agency, shall be paid the same fees and mileage that are paid witnesses in the courts of the United States, and witnesses whose depositions are taken and the persons taking the same shall severally be entitled to the same fees as are paid for like services in the courts of the United States.
(6) All process of any court to which application may be made under this Act may be served in the judicial district wherein the defendant or other person required to be served resides or may be found,
(7) The several departments and agencies of the Government, when directed by the President, shall furnish the Board, upon its request, all records, papers, and information in their possession relating to any matter before the Board.
(8) Any person who shall willfully resist, prevent, impede, or interfere with any member of the Board or any of its agents or agencies in the performance of duties pursuant to this Act shall be punished by a fine of not more than $5,000 or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or both.
(9) That the Navy Department shall make available to said Board all facts, figures, books, and documents pertaining to the shipbuilding industry and any and all contracts for the construction of ships and vessels, including the bidding for such contracts; and
(10) That said Board of Inqury shall report to the Secretary of Labor its findings of fact and its recommendations, and the Secretary of Labor shall, with such summary or other report as she sees fit, transmit the same to the Congress.
Mr. GRISWOLD. We will be glad to hear Mr. Kenney, the author of the resolution.
STATEMENT OF HON. EDWARD A. KENNEY, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY
Mr. KENNEY. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, this House Joint Resolution 331 has been introduced by me to authorize the Secretary of Labor to appoint a board of inquiry to ascertain the facts relating to labor practices of employers of labor in the shipbuilding industry.
There seems to be some question about the practices of employers toward labor in the shipbuilding industry of this country. This committee is probably familiar with the Senate Munitions Committee hearings and report, and with the disclosures before that committee of the tremendous profits which had accrued to the shipbuilding companies. There was also an intimation, and a strong one, of collusion in bidding on contracts by the shipbuilding companies, especially the “big three”, and it has been very bluntly stated in the report of that committee that many of those companies have in mind, not so much the needs of the country from the standpoint of the national defense, but their own needs for tremendous profits. There are many instances cited in the Nye committee's report which brings the ship