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TITLE VI.

RETAIL PRICES.1

Statement of the United States Fuel Administrator of Sept. 6, 1917, Issued as Paragraphs

5 and 6 of Publication No. 5 of the United States Fuel Administration, in regard to the Fixing of Retail Prices.

WASHINGTON, D. C., September 6, 1917.

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5. For the purpose of determining a proper basis for sales by retail dealers, local committees will be organized throughout the country. Each committee will investigate and report upon the local situation and advise concerning the regulations to be established. When the price is fixed, the local committee will be asked to superintend its enforcement.

6. The Fuel Administration is preparing a plan of apportionment which will secure to domestic consumers their fair share of the coal supply and at prices which will reflect the rices heretofore prom ated by the President.

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Order of the United States Fuel Administrator of Oct. 1, 1917, Establishing Retail Gross Margins and Regulations Governing Retail Dealers.

WASHINGTON, D. C., October 1, 1917. To all persons, firms, corporations, and associations engaged in the handling and

sale of coal or coke at retail, hereinafter referred to as retailers or retail dealers:

The President of the United States in pursuance of the provisions of the act of Congress approved August 10, 1917, entitled "An act to provide further for the national security and defense by encouraging the production, conserving the supply, and controlling the distribution of food products and fuel,” and particularly for the purpose of carrying into effect the provisions of said act relating to fuel, having on the 21st day of August, 1917, fixed the price at which bituminous coal may be sold at the mouth of the mine, and having on the 23d day of August, 1917, fixed the price at which certain sizes of anthracite coal may be sold at the mouth of the mine on and after the 1st day of September, 1917, and, by the same order, having fixed the amount which may be paid as commission to jobbers

Now, in furtherance of the purpose for which said act was passed and by direction of the President of the United States, the Fuel Administrator hereby orders and directs:

On and after the 1st day of October, 1917, in making prices and sales to consumers, the retail gross margin (as hereinafter defined) added by any retail dealer to the average cost (determined as hereinafter provided) of any size or grade of coal or coke for each class of business shall not exceed the average gross margin added by such dealer for the same size or grade for each class of business during the calendar year 1915, plus 30 per cent of said retail gross margin for the calendar year 1915: Provided, however, That the retail gross margin added by any retail dealer shall in no case exceed the average added by such dealer for the same size, grade, and class of business during July, 1917.

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1 See also in Chap. IV, Title 1, Section 2, Section VIII of the order of Mar. 20, 1918, effective April 1, 1918, in regard to special preparation of coal and the inclusion by retailers of the premium allowed for such preparation. See also Chap. II, Title IV, Sections 4 and 5. See also Chapter III, Title IV, Section 2 (note) relative to the inclusion of a retail gross margin in the basis of settlement for confiscated coal, and Chapter III, Title IX, Section 2, (notes) relative to the inclusion of a Purchasing Agent's Commission in arriving at the retailer's cost for the purpose of determining the retail gross margin.

By this order retailers are required to fix a retail gross margin, which may be less than, but shall not in any instant exceed, the margin added by them in 1915 plus 30 per cent thereof.

DEFINITION OF RETAIL DEALER,

Every person, partnership, corporation, or association physically receiving, handling, and delivering coal or coke to consumers is a retail coal or coke dealer within the meaning of this order.

DEFININITION OF RETAIL GROSS MARGIN.

The retail gross margins of the different classes of retail coal and coke dealers are defined as:

(1) The difference between the price charged by a retail coal or coke dealer to consumers and the average cost of coal or coke to such retailer, free on board railroad cars, at his railroad siding, yard, pocket, or trestle, when such coal or coke is received by him by rail.

(2) The difference between the price charged by a retail coal or coke dealer to consumers and the average cost of coal or coke to such retailer free alongside his wharf, pocket, or water yard, when such coal or coke is received by him by water.

(3) The difference between the price charged by a retail coal or coke dealer to consumers and the average cost of coal or coke to such retailer at wholesalers' pockets, trestles, railroad sidings, mines, tipples, dumps, docks, yards, or wharves.

HOW RETAIL DEALERS SHALL ASCERTAIN AVERAGE COST OF COAL OR COKE.

The average cost of coal or coke to retail dealers, to which the gross retail margin may be added, shall be ascertained by them for each size and grade on the first and sixteenth days of each calendar month, according to the following method:

The tonnage and average cost of coal or coke on hand at the beginning of a period is to be combined with the tonnage and average cost of coal or coke received during the period.

Example.

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In the above example, the average cost per ton of egg coal to which the gross margin should be added for sales during the period October 1 to October 15, inclusive, is $6, during the period October 16 to 31, inclusive, it is $5.25; and for sales during the period November 1 to 15, inclusive, the average cost is $4.82. The same method of compu. tation must be applied by each dealer in ascertaining his average cost of each size and grade of coal or coke.

REPORTS. From retail dealers in various sections of the country monthly reports will be required by the United States Fuel Administrator and the Federal Trade Commission, on blanks to be supplied for this purpose. On these forms, the dealers must return

the cost of coal or coke received by them, their sales prices, and their gross margins. Whenever necessary, supplementary reports on accounting forms provided therefor will be required to show the actual cost of conducting the retail business and other information which may be required. The accounting forms will contain directions. as to returning them to the State fuel administrators.

RETAIL DEALERS BEGINNING BUSINESS SINCE 1915.

Any persons, firms, corporations, or associations not engaged in the retail coal or coke business before January 1, 1916, and consequently unable to determine their retail gross margin during 1915 by the method above described shall return at once to the Fuel Administrator at Washington, D. C., a sworn statement of the average retail gross margin which they have received during the period they have been in business on each grade and size of coal and coke and for each class of business. Pending investigation and action upon this information such retail dealers may continue to sell coal or coke at a gross margin not to exceed the average gross margin which they have received during said period: Provided, however, That the above-mentioned increase of 30 per cent shall not be added by them to such margin, and that the retail gross margin added by such persons, firms, corporations, or associations to their average cost of coal or coke shall not in any case exceed the average retail gross margin added by them for the same size, grade, and class of business during the month of July, 1917.

RETAILERS' CONTRACTS WITH CONSUMERS.

Contracts between a retail dealer and a consumer made before this date are not affected by this order, provided that such contracts are bona fide in character and enforceable at law.

In making deliveries of coal or coke under such contracts, a retail dealer will be expected to supply only the minimum amount of any coal or coke which under the terms thereof he can be obliged to deliver, unless and until he has met the reasonable requirements of other consumers desiring to purchase coal or coke from such dealer.

Immediate investigation into the cost of local distribution and the profits of retail dealers will be made by the State fuel administrators acting through local committees and with the aid of accountants. The State fuel administrators will be charged with the duty of recommending to the Fuel Administrator remedies for all abuses and avoidable hardships arising under the operation of this order.

H. A. GARFIELD,

Fuel Administrator.

Regulation of the United States Fuel Administrator, of Oct. 6, 1917, Issued as Paragraph 13

of Publication No. 9 of the United States Fuel Administration, in Regard to the Return of a Sworn Statement of Facts by Retail Dealers showing 1915 Margins.

WASHINGTON, D. C., 6 October, 1917. The following orders, rulings, and regulations relating to coal prices and governing the sale, shipment, and distribution of coal are promulgated by the United States Fuel Administrator on behalf of the President under the authority of the Act of Congress approved August 10, 1917, entitled “An Act to provide further for the national security and defense by encouraging the production, conserving the supply, and controlling the distribution of food products and fuel,” and an Executive Order of the President dated August 23, 1917, appointing said Fuel Administrator.

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13. Whenever called upon to do so by the Fuel Administrator, all persons, firms, and corporations dealing in and selling coal to consumers at retail, shall return to the Fuel Administrator at Washington, D. C., or otherwise as directed, a sworn statement of facts showing his, her, or its retail margin between the dates of January 1, 1915, and

December 31, 1915, both inclusive, and to furnish such other information as may be required, such returns to be made on a blank form to be furnished by the Fuel Administrator when so requested.

H. A. GARFIELD,

Fuel Administrator.

Order of the United States Fuel Administrator of Dec. 8, 1917, Ratifying Action of State

Fuel Administrators in Fixing Retail Prices and Providing for an Appeal from the Orders of the State Fuel Administrators.

The United States Fuel Administrator, acting under an Executive Order of the President of the United States, dated August 23, 1917, appointing said Administrator, and in furtherance of said order and of the Act of Congress therein referred to and approved August 10, 1917, and pursuant to the direction of the President of the United States,

Hereby orders and directs that all retail prices and retail gross margins heretofore and hereafter designated by any State Fuel Administrator or by any local committee with the approval of the State Fuel Administrator, who appointed such committee, are hereby adopted and fixed by the United States Fuel Administrator as the retail prices or retail gross margins for the sale of coal in the locality or by the dealers designated by such Fuel Administrator or Local Committee, subject, however, to modification either by the State Fuel Administrator making or approving the same or by the United States Fuel Administrator; and further subject to all orders, rules and regulations heretofore or hereafter issued or made by the President of the United States or the United States Fuel Administrator or by any State Fuel Administrator affecting the sale, shipment or distribution of coal;

And it is hereby further ordered that any one or more persons who feel aggrieved by the prices heretofore or hereafter designated by any State Fuel Administrator or by any Local Committee may appeal to the United States Fuel Administrator to have such designation of prices or gross margins modified by forwarding to the Legal Department, United States Fuel Administration, at Washington, a verified written petition setting forth in detail the facts relied upon by such petitioner and by forwarding a copy of such petition to the State Fuel Administrator who made or approved the designation of prices or gross margins which it is sought to have modified. Pending the determination of such appeal and until the decision of such an appeal by the U.S. Fuel Administrator, such designated prices or gross margins shall remain in full force and effect unless otherwise ordered by the State or U. S. Fuel Administrator.

H. A. GARFIELD,

United States Fuel Administrator, WASHINGTON, D. C., Dec. 8, 1917. Order of the United States Fuel Administrator of Aug. 16, 1918, Effective 7 a. m., August

17, 1918, Relating to Retail Prices and Retail Gross Margins Designated by State Fuel Administrators, Establishing a Procedure for Appeal from Orders and Regulations of said Administrators Fixing such Prices and Margins, and Vacating the Order of Dec. 8, 1917, Relative to Retail Prices and Retail Gross Margins.

WASHINGTON, D. C., August 16, 1918. The United States Fuel Administrator, acting under authority of an Executive Order of the President of the United States, dated 23 August, 1917, appointing said Administrator, and of subsequent Executive Orders, and in furtherance of the purpose of said orders and of the Act of Congress therein referred to and approved August 10, 1917,

Hereby orders and directs:

(1) That all retail prices and retail gross margins heretofore and hereafter designated by any State Fuel Administrator or by any local committee with the approval of the

State Fuel Administrator, who appointed such committee, are hereby adopted and fixed by the United States Fuel Administrator as the retail prices or retail margins for the sale of coal in the locality or by the dealers designated by such Fuel Administrator or Local Committee, subject, however, to modification either by the State Fuel Administrator making or approving the same or by the United States Fuel Administrator; and further subject to all orders, rules, and regulations heretofore or hereafter issued or made by the President of the United States or the United States Fuel Administrator or by any State Fuel Administrator affecting the sale, shipment, or distribution of coal.

(2) That any one or more persons, partnerships, firms, associations, or corporations feeling themselves aggrieved by any final order of the State Fuel Administrator establishing maximum retail gross margins or prices for coal for retail dealers shall have the right of appeal from such final order to the United States Fuel Administrator at Washington, D. C., provided that all the facts and data concerning such prices. complained of shall have first been submitted to the State Fuel Administrator having jurisdiction over such maximum retail gross margins or prices and that said State Fuel Administrator, after considering such facts and data, has refused to modify or change to the satisfaction of the petitioner or petitioners the maximum retail gross margins or prices established.

(3) That any one or more persons, partnerships, firms, associations, or corporations desiring to prosecute an appeal from a final order or a ruling of a State Fuel Administrator, as specified in paragraph (2), shall file a petition with the United States Fuel Administration at Washington, D. C., addressed to the United States Fuel Administrator, which shall be verified by the oath of the petitioner or petitioners, and shall set forth fully and in detail the following facts:

(a) A brief statement of the hearing or hearings had before the State Fuel Administrator and Local Fuel Committees for the purpose of establishing such maximum retail gross margins or prices.

(b) A copy of the final order or ruling issued by said State Fuel Administrator establishing such maximum retail gross margins or prices.

(c) The objections of the petitioner or petitioners to said ruling or order of the State Fuel Administrator giving all reasons for such objections.

(4) That an exact copy of the petition as required by paragraph (3) above, shall at substantially the same time that it is filed with the United States Fuel Administrator also be filed with the State Fuel Administrator from whose order or ruling such appeal is taken.

(5) That such evidence in the way of affidavits, reports, accounts, documents, cost forms, and written statements may be offered at the hearing of the said petition as the petitioner or petitioners or any other party in interest may desire to offer and which the United States Fuel Administrator may deem necessary to require.

(6) That in the event that the petitioner desires to offer oral evidence or statements, he shall file with his petition, as an exhibit, a written statement stating the substance of the proposed oral testimony or statement, which he desires to offer.

(7) That no change in the maximum gross retail margin or prices made by the United States Fuel Administrator upon any appeal shall affect the orders of the State Fuel Administrator appealed from as to sales made prior to the date of the final rulings of the United States Fuel Administrator making such changes.

(8) That all appeals shall be heard in the first instance by the Director of the Bureau of State Organizations, who may, if he desires to do so, call in to join with him in hearing such appeal not more than two other members of the staff of the United States Fuel Administration at Washington, D. C., which shall be known as the “Appeal Board."

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