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Condon, Miss Mary, assistant director, rural services, National Educa-
Flanders, Hon. Ralph E., a United States Senator from the State of
Thompson, Hon. Clark W.:
Board for Christian Social Action, American Lutheran Church,
of America, division of home missions, New York, N. Y.,
ESTABLISH A COMMISSION ON COUNTRY LIFE
TUESDAY, JULY 8, 1958
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met pursuant to notice at 10 a. m., room 1310, New House Office Building, Washington, D. C., Hon. Clark W. Thompson (chairman of the subcommittee presiding;
Present: Representatives Thompson, McMillan, Abernethy, Matthews, Mrs. Knutson, and Krueger.
Also present: Representatives Dixon and Quie; Mabel C. Downey, clerk; Francis M. LeMay, staff consultant.
Mr. THOMPSON. The committee will be in order.
It may be of interest to the authors of the bills that we are going to consider today and to the witnesses who will later testify to know just a little bit of the history of the Family Farm Subcommittee.
It was formed 3 years ago. It was composed of members of the Committee on Agriculture, basically those who were primarily interested in family farming.
We were convinced that the family farm was in very grave danger.
We were also convinced that the family farm and the farm family had not always been the backbone of our economy but that on them rested the best hope for the future stability of the United States.
We started these hearings down in Texas in the center of the family farm country. We traveled by bus across Texas into Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and on up into Tennessee where we ended our hearings some 10 days later.
We did not confine our hearings to the farmers themselves because we wanted to hear the opinions of businessmen, bankers, and others in the various and different communities.
We did, however, stress our desire to hear the farmer who could not come to Washington to make his plea to his Government. So we took the Government to him.
It was a most inspiring and worthwhile experience for all of us. We came through the hearings and through further ones that happened later down in North Carolina, over in old Virginia, and, finally, last fall in Minnesota-we came through with the firm conviction that we were right about the family farmer and the farm family, and their destiny in the future of the Nation.
There are a good many indications that, while we are not alone in our conviction, there is a very strong sentiment that the only place for the family farm is as an adjunct to industry. Unless you take industry out into the country and let a fellow farm part time when he is not
working in the factory, he has no future; but we do not agree with that.
We were particularly convinced by our hearings that, all that the family farmer required was a share in the production and in the marketing of his production that he knows he can turn out from the farm. The family farmer to us is this man who together with his family, has been able to produce a reasonably decent living in normal times.
Most of the trouble that we-ran into and most of the complaints not exactly complaints but merely an expression of the situation that confronted the individual farmerwere due to artificial unbalance in production and in marketing.
I would like to refer just for a moment to a paragraph in our first report which was filed on July 27, 1956. We invited the attention of the committee to a recommendation of our subcommittee, which was the formation of a new branch in the Department of Agriculture to be headed by an appropriate official. From my brief study of the bills that we are going to consider, I find that this same idea has occurred to others. And there is a feeling that, perhaps, we cannot legislate as we would like to in behalf of the family farmer. Certainly, however, if there were a central group-perhaps within the Department of Agriculture, perhaps on some other level, but essentially a group looking after the people in whom we are primarily interested todaythen we might get somewhere.
(H. R. 11844, report, and H. R. 12239 are as follows:)
[H. R. 11844, 85th Cong., 2d sess.) A BILL To establish a Commission on Country Life, and for other purposes Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
DECLARATION OF PURPOSE
SECTION 1. Because (1) economic and social changes are profoundly affecting all phases of human life and endeavor in country communities; (2) there is currently a need for greater awareness on the part of all people, their organizations, and their leadership concerning the interrelatedness of rural and urban forces shaping the new country community ; (3) rural organizations and leadership are in the need of a critical and thoughtful appraisal of the forces shaping the new country community; (4) in a time of great, social and economic adjustment spokesmen for country people must be encouraged to safeguard the opportunity for full development of individual and local community initiative; and (5) there is a need for an approach to the changing country scene which will provide the Nation with a body of objective facts, thoughtful appraisal, and a value base to help its people make wise decisions in the area of country living, it is therefore determined to be necessary to establish a commission to develop this approach, advise and recommend with regard to problems, needs, probable courses of action or other appropriate means which will help the Nation to act wisely in this time of unprecedented change in country community living.
COMMISSION ON COUNTRY LIFE Sec. 2. (a) For the purpose of carrying out this Act there is hereby established a commission to be known as the Commission on Country Life (hereafter in this Act referred to as the "Commission").
(b) The Commission shall be composed of twenty-five members, as follows:
(1) Fifteen members, of whom not more than nine shall be members of the same political party, appointed by the President of the United States, from among whom the President shall designate the Chairman and the Vice Chairman of the Commission;
(2) Five members appointed by the President of the Senate, three from the majority party, and two from the minority party; and
(3) Five members appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, three from the majority party, and two from the minority party.
(c) Any vacancy in the Commission shall not affect its powers, but shall be filled in the same manner in which the original appointment was made.
(d) Thirteen members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number may conduct hearings.
(e) Service of an individual as a member of the Commission or employment of an individual by the Commission as an attorney or expert in any field, on a parttime or full-time basis, with or without compensation, shall not be considered as service or employment bringing such individual within the provisions of section 281, 283, 284, 434, or 1914 of title 18 of the United States Code, or section 190 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (5 U. S. C. 99).
DUTIES OF THE COMMISSION Sec. 3. (a) The Commission shall carry out the purposes of section 1 of this Act and in doing so shall
(1) assemble the facts necessary to give a comprehensive picture with respect to the major trends affecting country community living;
(2) identify major gaps between the problems of country residents and the organized means to handle their problems;
(3) demonstrate the interrelatedness of the functions of, and the need for cooperation between, the various institutions, agencies, and organizations serving country people;
(4) evaluate the impact of technological developments on living and ways of making a living in the country community;
(5) assess the impact of the changing composition of the country community population on social and economic goals and values; and
(6) develop a set of principles and guides to serve as a basis for approaches to improved country living in the years ahead. (b) The Commission, not later than two years after the date on which the twenty-fifth member of the Commission is appointed, shall submit to the President and to the Congress its final report, including recommendations for legislative action; and the Commission shall also from time to time make other reports on the activities and studies of the Commission. Copies of reports of the Commission shall be distributed free to interested persons.
HEARINGS ; OBTAINING INFORMATION Sec. 4. (a) The Commission or, on the authorization of the Commission, any subcommittee or member thereof, may, for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act, hold such hearings and sit and act at such times and places, administer such oaths, and require, by subpena or otherwise, the attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the production of such books, records, correspondence, memoranda, papers, and documents, as the Commission or such subcommittee or member may deem advisable. Subpenas may be issued under the signature of the Chairman of the Commission, of such subcommittee, or any duly designated member, and may be served by any person designated by such Chair. man or member. The provisions of sections 102, 103, and 104 of the Revised Statutes of the United States (2 U. S. C. 192, 193, 194), shall apply in the case of any failure of any witness to comply with any subpena or to testify when summoned under authority of this section.
(b) The Commission is authorized to secure from any department, agency, or independent instrumentality of the Federal Government any information it deems necessary to carry out its functions under this Act; and each such department, agency, or instrumentality is authorized and directed to furnish such information to the Commission, upon request made by the Chairman or by the Vice Chairman when acting as Chairman.
APPROPRIATIONS, EXPENSES, AND PERSONNEL Sec. 5. (a) There are hereby authorized to be appropriated such amounts as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this Act.
(b) Each member of the Commission shall receive $50 per diem when engaged in the performance of duties vested in the Commission, except that no compensation shall be paid by the United States, by reason of service as a member of such Commission, to any such member who is receiving other compensation from the