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SUMMARY The different items of expense discussed in the foregoing paragraphs are as follows: Maintenance of moditied cotton-free zone..
$160,000 Local surveys in Mexico adjacent to the border of the United States -- 30.000 Clean up of local points of infestation near the American border
50, 000 Institution of work of eradication in Mexico, in cooperation with the
Mexican Government, contingent on results of general surveys of infested districts
260, 000 Total
500,000 WEDNESDAY, JULY 18, 1917.
STATEMENT OF HON. OTIS WINGO, A REPRESENTATIVE IN
CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF ARKANSAS. Mr. Wingo. Mr. Chairman, may I say just a word before I leave? The CHAIRMAN. Certainly.
Mr. WINGO. There was a meeting of the representatives of the cotton-growing States, over which Mr. Garner, of Texas, presided, and he appointed a committee of members from that territory to look after this matter and to assist in any way we could. I suggested to the committee that there was nothing we could do; that it was a matter that the gentlemen from the department could present, which they have done. However, we want to suggest this, in behalf of the committee, which is brought out by the suggestion Mr. Sisson has just made. Some laughed at some of the ideas that were advanced by the Department of Agriculture experts on the Mexican boll weevil and we have paid very dearly for not heeding their warnings at that time. From the information we can gather we think the pink bollworm is a much more dangerous pest than the Mexican boll weevil, and we believe we can save money by the expenditure of a few hundred thousand dollars right in the beginning. While I know nothing about the practicability of the plans, and do not pretend to know, that is a matter for you gentlemen to consider and determine. At the same time it occurs to me that we had better run the risk of wasting some money now and keep this pest out of the United States.
There is one thing that has been overlooked, and that is that the strong winds down there have been known to blow mosquitoes for over 50 or 100 miles. I think the gentlemen from Texas will agree that that is true. In the natural travel of the insect they are things that you can not reach by quarantine. The other States in the cotton belt are interested just as much as Texas. Of course, Texas does owe the duty which the chairman has pointed out of enacting local legislation that lies wholly within the power of the State and which the Federal Government can not enact; and I am inclined to believe, in spite of everything that has been said about the political situation down there, that if we undertake to carry out this program pressure in the State of Texas will get proper results and that we will get the proper cooperation by Texas, both officially and individually. In behalf of the meeting that was held by the members of the cottongrowing States we want to present the point of view to this committee that we had better waste some money now than run the risk and pay the awful toll that we paid in connection with the Mexican boll weevil. That is all I care to say, gentlemen.
THURSDAY, JULY 19, 1917.
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE.
STATEMENTS OF HON. WILLIAM C. REDFIELD, SECRETARY OF
COMMERCE; MR. C. A. RICHARDS, CHIEF DIVISION OF EXPORT LICENSES; MR. GEORGE JOHANNES, DISBURSING CLERK;' MR. GEORGE R. PUTNAM, COMMISSIONER“ OF LIGHTHOUSES; MR. HUGH M. SMITH, COMMISSIONER OF FISHERIES; MR. W. T. BOWER, OF THE BUREAU OF FISHERIES; MR. E. LESTER JONES, SUPERINTENDENT COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY; MR. F. G. FISCHER AND MR. R. L. FARIS, OF THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY; MR. GEORGE UHLER, SUPERVISING INSPECTOR GENERAL, STEAMBOAT-INSPECTION SERVICE; AND MR. SAM L. ROGERS, DIRECTOR OF THE CENSUS.
OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY.
The CHAIRMAN. For additional employees during the fiscal year 1918 at annual rates of compensation as follows: "Assistants to the Secretary, $4,000; stenographer, $1,200; in all, $5,200.”
Secretary REDFIELD. I do not know that it is necessary, Mr. Chairman, to give you a memorandum of what the other departments have in the way of this kind of help. I have it here if you wish it. But the fact is that the force in my own office is altogether too small to do the large amount of work imposed upon it. There is my secretary, my confidential clerk, and one stenographer; the confidential clerk acts as stenographer, giving me two stenographers. There is no regular stenographer for the Secretary, and the volume of work imposed upon the department, I need hardly say, has immensely increased and is likely to increase more, and the force has simply become physically exhausted. I can only assure you that the request is moderate, both as compared with the work to be done and as compared with the help in other departments of the same kind, and I make a personal request that if it is at all possible we have it, because, otherwise, I do not know how to keep up with the work. I would be very glad to answer any questions.
The CLAIRMAX. The position of assistant to the Secretary is a new position?
Secretary REDFIELD. It is a new position.
Secretary REDFIELD. Well, there is such a one in the Treasury, in Justice, in Interior, and in War. It did not seem to me necessary to ask for an Assistant Secretary. I have one, and that I thought would involve more expense than was needed. It seems to me that a post intermediate was all that was required.
SPECIAL REGULATION OF COMMERCE.
The CHAIRMAN. “ For special emergency services in Washington, D. C., and in the field, rental of quarters in Washington, D. C. and elsewhere, books of reference, periodicals, stationery, office supplies,
equipment, printing and binding to be done at the Government Printing Office, travel and subsistence expenses of officers and employees, and all other expenses necessary for the special regulation of commerce and incidental matters relating thereto, to be immediately available, and to remain available until June 30, 1918, $570,000.”
Secretary REDFIELD. Mr. Chairman, I will refer you to House Document 211, Sixty-fifth Congress, first session, in which this is submitted, and beg leave to amend the request by reducing it from $570,000 to $384,000. The reason for this is that the President, in order to get the work started, has given us $150,000 out of his special appropriation for national defense, and we have, in addition to that, reduced our estimate by 20 people, thinking that we can get along at least until Congress shall meet next winter. I must confess that it is with some hesitation, as this work has developed in the very few days it has been started, that we make this reduction, and yet we certainly can get along with it until we can bring the matter before Congress next winter. As you will appreciate, it is next to impossible to foresee the detail of a work which has never been undertaken by the Government before. We know that our present force of 72, comprising 29 clerks, 35 stenographers, 2 trade experts, and 6 advisers, is working until 11 o'clock every night, and that it is necessary to add to it every day in order to keep up with the immense volume of detail. Mr. GILLETT. What did you say was meeting every night? Secretary REDFIELD. The entire force. Mr. GILLETT. The entire force of the Bureau of Commerce?
Secretary REDFIELD. Of this division of foreign licenses. We have taken over the old building used by the Department of Justice at 1435 K Street.
Mr. GILLETT. How did you get this bureau established? It is an entirely new service, is it not?
Secretary REDFIELD. It is an entirely new service. It is authorized by the law known as the espionage act, and the President allowed us $150,000 in order to start it. He issued a proclamation, which is in the document I referred to, on the 22d of June last. He gave us the money for that purpose and the work I need hardly say is of immense importance. Its public value increases, I think I may say, almost every hour, certainly every day, and we are quite unable to foresee the full extent, although we are watching it with the greatest possible care, and a very considerable percentage of the force is volunteer force; that is, a force paid, but paid small salaries. Two gentlemen who are experienced experts in export work are practically giving their services. Mr. Richards, the chief of the division, is here, and I would be very glad, indeed, to have the committee ask him any questions they wish.
Mr. GILLETT. May I ask you a question? You say I see from this document that the President established an export council composed, of the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Agriculture, the Secretary of Commerce, and the food administrator. Vho is that food administrator, and where does he get his title?
Secretary REDFIELD. That is Mr. Hoover.
Mr. GILLETT. There is no act of Congress that has authorized any food administrator, is there?
Secretary REDFIELD. As far as I know, there is not. Mr. GILLETT. Is that council having meetings? Secretary REDFIELD. Oh, yes. That question of law, I presume, will be covered by the Attorney General. It has not come up to me at all.
Mr. GILLETT. I wondered where he got this title of food administrator?
Secretary REDFIELD. That is in the executive order. Mr. GILLETT. So I noticed. Secretary REDFIELD. And we simply followed that out. Mr. GILLETT. He meets with you regularly, does he? Secretary REDFIELD. Oh, yes. The CHAIRMAN. Suppose you tell what has been done so far and what is being done, so as to give us an idea of the scope of the work.
Mr. RICHARDS. The first proclamation came out last Sunday night and was printed in Monday morning's paper, and covered a very limited list of articles, primarily those they wanted to begin to watch immediately. We began on Wednesday to receive applications for licenses from all over the country. We are also receiving them, of course, through our branch offices, of which there are seven-in New York, New Orleans, Boston, Seattle, St. Louis, Chicago, and other places. We granted every day last week and every day this week every single license that was applied for that could be granted; that is to say, there was none refused. There have only been two or three recommended to be refused so far. There is a regular system for these applications when they come in, and of course the underlying principle behind this whole thing is to keep stuff out of enemy country and conserve our resources here. Those are the two primary factors we have in mind, and that is the theory on which the whole plan and scope of this work is based. When the applications come in they go ultimately before an expert in the particular commodity, a man who has made a particular study of that commodity, and we hope to have about 20 or 30 of those men classified according to the tariffs, taking that as a basis.
Mr. GILLETT. From whom do those applications come?
Mr. RICHARDS. From the shippers. We have not as yet made any ruling as to who must make the application. That has got to be done later. At the present minute we simply say that a license must be procured in accordance with the proclamation, and it is immaterial whether the shipper or the receiver or the middleman gets it. He applies for a license to ship a certain stipulated quantity during the next 60 days. That is the length of time for which the license is valid. If it is going to South America or to the allies it is granted immediately: in fact, we are giving blanket licenses to the allies temporarily until we can get some idea from them as to what it is they are buying. We asked them yesterday for a statement of all their purchases, which they promised by the 25th of the month, which will cover their August shipments. The present licenses apply only until the 1st of August. Then to South America we have of course granted licenses very freely.
Mr. GILLETT. Do you give a license to an individual or do you give a license for a certain shipment?
Mr. RICHARDS. For a certain shipment. We have not as yet given any blanket licenses to any one shipper, but we may do that later on, and probably will as we get this work developed so that one man will not have to get individual licenses; but that is something that has to be gone into rery carefully, because we would be giving a great deal of power to one man. We have arranged for shipments into Canada without any question. Things are going to Canada freely, and the collectors of customs have been notified, and there has been no stoppage of anything going into Canada. Coal, particularly, was very short in Canada, and I believe is to-day, and there was a good deal of worry on the part of Canadians about getting coal. Therefore steps had to be taken to get that arranged for quickly. Another good result which has immediately come about from this control which was not at all anticipated was the coordination of the shipping of the allies in this country. In other words, the French Government was bringing freight to New York. They could not always get tonnage for a part of that cargo. They were bringing stuff to New York regardless of whether they had a boat. The whole traffic arrangements of the allies have now been coordinated with an office at 120 Broadway, and there is a central committee known as the traffic executive, and that committee only allots the cars to the ally having a boat that is ready for them.
In other words, they will clean up all the French stuff before they bring any more there, and that will work in the same way back to the mills, so that the mills know that they can go ahead and roll a certain kind of steel and that a boat will be ready for it. That is going to mean a tremendous saving in the use of railroad cars for storage purposes and in saving of congestion on the railroads and will be a saring of actual storage space in New York.
The CHAIRMAX. I do not see how the administration of your work affects that.
Mr. RICHARDS. It only affects it indirectly, but it came about almost instantly. They came to us and said that they had shipments all over the country, and they suggested that we give them a blanket license covering these goods.
The CHAIRMAN. Who came to you—the allied representatives?
Mr. RICHARDS. Yes; their shipping representative, a man named Connop Guthrie, a traffic expert; and in the course of the conversation as to the method that was being employed by the different allies in trying to work out some scheme which would permit the free flow of goods to the allies and not cause any stoppage, the suggestion was made that they coordinate their shipping arrangements. Of course, it appealed to us as a very good thing, and we gave them a blanket license under the condition that they would adopt that plan. Now, of course, if that does not work out satisfactorily in the course of two or three weeks, we can change it because it is only good until the 1st of August.
Secretary REDFIELD. They are issued for 10 days, are they not?
Mr. RICHARDS. Yes. I think these are about the only blanket licenses we now have. We are now trying to arrange blanket licenses for small shipments going into Mexico. For instance, if a man wants to drive his bread wagon over into Mexico, we have got to have an arrangement for handling it. Under the present arrangement a man can not take gasoline into Mexico in his automobile. He has to