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Longview, Wash., June 12, 1950. Mr. EDWARD C. SWEENEY, Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, United States Senate,
Washington, D. C. DEAR MR. SWEENEY: We are pleased to know that the committee's study of S. 2984 has resulted in a decision for no further action. The threat of such a bill to our little project can be easily understood when you consider the possibility of someone coming along with the sort of aid it proposed and "second guessing” on an Aerocar-II without the trying and trouble of raising finance. Certainly private enterprise would be taking a beating, and there would be nothing to guarantee that Aerocar, Inc., would get a chance to do the "second guessing” either.
A review of the report on S. 3504 would seem to indicate that there might be some place for a bit of assistance to Aerocar in the form of a test program now that we do have our machine in actual existence. I don't know whether this is the intent of the bill or not, but certainly it would seem that a machine for for private aviation improvement would qualify just as well as a machine for commercial transport with jet engines. I note that there is mention of “rotors” etc., so it must be the intent of the bill to include aircraft other than conventional jet or turbo-prop transports. Can you clear up this point for us, and if there would be any point in our writing to anyone on the necessity for getting that point straight, please advise us of who to contact so that Aerocar might conceiveably get into such a “testing” program. The form of assistance that might be worked out by a subsidized investigation of the problems of ATC for a "flying automobile” could be of great assistance to us at this point.
We most certainly have no objection to your use of our letter in your report. It expresses the situation in rather informal tones, but that is about the situation any way you look at it. My only regret is that we do not have the finances necessary to bring the Aerocar to Washington to show your committee that individual initiative needs no prodding, but that the problem of finance is the big problem for any new industry today under our present tax structure. It might be noted that anyone who developed a "new" aircraft under S. 2984 would still be faced with the problem of "production capital” after the development was completed. What is being done to help this situation? Sincerely yours,
Moulton B. TAYLOR.
CIVIL AERONAUTICS BOARD,
Washington, May 31, 1950. Hon. EDWIN C. JOHNSON, Chairman, Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
United States Senate, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR SENATOR JOHNSON: This is in reply to your request for reports on S. 2984, a bill to provide for the development and improvement of aircraft intended for industrial or personal use, and adaptable for military service, and on S. 2301, a bill to promote interstate and foreign commerce and strengthen the national defense by providing for commercial cargo and transport aircraft adaptable to military transport service.
The Board has long advocated a program of Federal assistance for the development of improved transport aircraft, which is the principal objective of these bills. The matter has also been under study by the Air Coordinating Committee for a considerable period of time and that Committee has recently taken a positive position in favor of the enactment of legislation to promote the development of new transport aircraft. In addition, the Committee has agreed upon a type of assistance program which we believe is best suited to the purpose, and has embodied its proposals in a draft bill, a copy of which is enclosed herewith. This program, in which the Board fully concurs, is premised on the belief that the two most advantageous and appropriate aspects of new aircraft development for Government financial assistance are (1) the testing of new prototype aircraft and (2) the conduct of experiments simulating actual commercial operating conditions to permit adaptation of ground facilities and air safety regulations to use of the new designs.
This approach has the merit of leaving to private industry a maximum degree of initiative and competition in matters of production and design. Consequently, while the Board favors the general objectives of S. 2984 and S. 2301, we would
prefer the enactment of legislation in the form of the attached draft as proposed by the Air Coordinating Committee.
The Bureau of the Budget has advised that the enactment of legislation as proposed in the attached draft, if amended in accordance with the recommendations made below, would be in accordance with the program of the President.
The recommendations are:
1. Insert the word “commercial” between the words "improved” and “transport” in both the title of the bill and its statement of policy.
2. In section 2 (a) of the bill change “Administrator of Civil Aeronautics” to “Secretary of Commerce" and make corresponding changes in other sections of the bill.
3. Amend section 2 (a) of the bill to read as follows: “Preparing broad operating and general utility characteristics and specifications for types of commercial transport aircraft which he finds are required in the public interest, and which represent substantial advances over existing equipment.”
4. Amend the last sentence of section 6 of the bill to read as follows: “When so provided in the Appropriation Act concerned, such appropriation may remain, available until expended.' Sincerely yours,
JOSEPH J. O'CONNELL, Jr., Chairman.
JUNE 7, 1950. Hon. Edwin C. JOHNSON, Chairman, Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
United States Senate, Washington, D. C. MY DEAR SENATOR: This is in response to your request for the views of the Department of Justice concerning the bill (S. 2301) to promote interstate and foreign commerce and strengthen the national defense by providing for commercial cargo and transport aircraft adaptable to military transport service.
The bill would create an Aircraft Development Board, within the Department of the Air Force, composed of a representative of the Department of the Air Force, Department of the Navy, National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, Department of Commerce, Civil Aeronautics Board and such other Federal agency concerned with aeronautics as the Board may from time to time determine. The Board would be authorized and directed to initiate and support research and development of aircraft capable of performing essential commercial transportation and at the same time adaptable for military purposes when desired. Upon recommendations of the Board, the Secretary of the Air Force would be authorized to enter into contracts with respect to the production, acquisition. transfer, sale and recapture of such aircraft. To assist it in carrying out its functions, the Board would be authorized to establish an Aircraft Development Advisory Committee which would be made up of representatives of the public, the aircraft manufacturing industry, the certificated airlines and labor.
Section 4 of the bill providing for the establishment of the Aircraft Development Advisory Committee would exempt the members of the committee from the provisions of sections 216, 281, 283, and 434 of title 18, United States Code, and section 190 of the Revised Statutes (5 U. S. C. 99) “or any other provision of law imposing restrictions, requirements, or penalties in relation to the employment of persons, the performance of services, or the payment or receipt of compensation in connection with any claim, preceeding, or matter involving the United States
*: Provided, That the provisions of section 3679 of the Revised Statutes (U. S. C., title 31, sec. 665), as amended, shall not apply to the acceptance of voluntary service by any member of any such committee.”
Section 216 of title 18, U.S. C., prohibits any officer or agent of the United States from receiving any money or thing of value for procuring any contract with the United States.
Section 281 of title 18, U.S. C., makes it an offense for any officer or employee of the United States to receive compensation for services rendered to any person in relation to any proceeding or claim before any agency of the Government in which the Government is interested.
Section 283 of title 18, U. S. C., prohibits any officer or employee of the United States from acting as an agent or attorney for the purpose of prosecuting any claim against the Government. This section also prohibits such officer or employee from aiding or assisting in the prosecution of such claim or from receiving any gratuity, or any share of or interest in any such claim.
Section 434 of title 18, U. S. C., prohibits any officer or agent of the United States from transacting business with a corporation, association, or firm of which he is an officer, agent, or member.
Section 190 of the Revised Statutes (5 U. S. C. 99), prohibits a former officer of the United States from prosecuting a claim against the United States involving any matter directly connected with which such person was employed or performed duty within 2 years after the termination of such employment.
Section 665 of title 31, U. S. C., among other things, prohibits any department or any officer of the Government from accepting voluntary service for the Government or from employing personal services in excess of that authorized by law, except in emergency cases involving the loss of human life or the destruction of property.
The main purpose of the above-mentioned statutes is to protect the loyalty and integrity of the Government service and to prevent the defrauding of the United States by the exercise of undue influence on the part of its officers and employees who may have personal interests which conflict with their public duties.
While this Department is in sympathy with the desire to utilize the services of persons with outstanding ability and experience for public work, it is feared that the proposed exemptions from the provisions of law above cited would tend to establish an undesirable precedent. It is believed that where exemptions are allowed, such should be resorted to only in cases of emergency and, so far as practicable, should be specified.
It should be noted, in this connection, that the bill contains no provision stating that the exemptions shall not apply to any activity involving any matter in direct connection with which such person is employed by the Government or is performing his official duties. It is suggested that the measure should contain such a safeguard.
The Director of the Bureau of the Budget has advised that the enactment of this measure would not be in accord with the program of the President. Yours sincerely,
PEYTON FORD, Deputy Attorney General.