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REPORT No. 1040
TO INCREASE THE EFFICIENCY OF THE VETERINARY
CORPS OF THE ARMY
JUNE 18 (calendar day, June 19), 1930.-Ordered to be printed
Mr. REED, from the Committee on Military Affairs, submitted the
[To accompany H. R. 2755]
The Committee on Military Affairs, to which was referred the bill (H. R. 2755) to increase the efficiency of the Veterinary Corps of the Army, having considered the same, report favorably thereon with the recommendation that it do pass.
The purpose of the bill is set forth in House report thereon, which is made a part of this report and reads as follows:
The Committee on Military Affairs, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 2755) to increase the efficiency of the Veterinary Corps of the Regular Army, introduced by Mr. Johnson of South Dakota, having considered the same, report thereon with the recommendation that it do pass.
This bill is to give seven veterinarians who served in the Quartermaster Corps prior to June 3, 1916, and are now officers in the Regular Army, the same rights and privileges as those who served in the Cavalry and Field Artillery. Previous to June 3, 1916, veterinarians employed by the Government, whether Cavalry, Field Artillery, or Quartermaster Corps, were subject to practically the same regulations and orders.
The following letter from the Secretary of War, requesting that the legislation be introduced, explains the bill and is therefore made a part of this report, as follows:
May 4, 1929. Hon. W. FRANK JAMES, Acting Chairman Committee on Military Affairs,
House of Representatives. Dear Mr. James: I submit herewith draft of a bill with the request that it be introduced in the House of Representatives and enacted into law:
"A BILL To increase the efficiency of the Veterinary Corps of the Regular Army “Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That for purposes of promotion, longevity pay, and retirement there shall be credited to officers of the Veterinary Corps all fulltime service rendered by them as veterinarians in the Quartermaster Department, Cavalry, or Field Artillery, prior to June 3, 1916.
“Sec. 2. The provisions of this act shall become effective upon its passage, and all laws and parts of laws which are inconsistent herewith or are in conflict with any of the provisions hereof are hereby repealed as of that date.”
The applicable provisions of existing law on this subject are contained in section 10 of the national defense act. A ruling by the Comptroller General stated that service as veterinarian in the Quartermaster Corps performed prior to June 3, 1916, could not be counted for purposes of promotion, longevity pay, and retirement, though similar services performed as veterinarians to Cavalry and Field Artillery units could be counted for the purposes stated above.
The changes that would be brought about in existing law by the proposed legislation and the effect of such changes, stated briefly, are as follows:
The seven commissioned officers now serving in the Veterinary Corps, Regular Army, whose service prior to June 3, 1916, was with the Quartermaster Corps, would be placed in the same status as to promotion, longevity pay, and retirement as those veterinarians of similar service in the Cavalry or Field Artillery.
The annual cost of this proposed bill will be approximately $5,400.
The veterinarians who were employed by the Government prior to June 3, 1916, whether in the Cavalry, Field Artillery, or Quartermaster Corps, were subject to practically the same regulations and orders. The proposed legislation will give veterinarians who served in the Quartermaster Corps and are now officers in the Regular Army the same rights and privileges as those who served as veterinarians in the Cavalry and Field Artillery.
If any additional information from the War Department is desired I shall be pleased to furnish it. Should hearings be held upon the proposed legislation, suitable witnesses will be designated to appear.
The proposed legislation has been submitted to the Director of the Bureau of the Budget, who advises that it is not in conflict with the financial program of the President.
A similar letter has been addressed to the chairman of the Committee on Mili. tary Affairs of the Senate. Sincerely yours,
James W. Good, Secretary of War.
REPORT No. 1041
REIMBURSEMENT TO STATES FOR MILITARY PROPERTY AND
EQUIPMENT BROUGHT INTO FEDERAL SERVICE IN 1917
JUNE 18 (calendar day, JUNE 19), 1930.-Ordered to be printed
Mr. REED, from the Committee on Military Affairs, submitted the
[To accompany H. R. 704]
The Committee on Military Affairs, to which was referred the bill (H. R. 704) to grant relief to those States which brought State-owned property into the Federal Service in 1917, having considered the ame, reports favorably thereon with the recommendation that it do pass.
The purpose of the bill is set forth in the House report thereon which is made a part of this report and reads as follows:
The Committee on Military Affairs, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 704) to grant relief to those States which brought State-owned property into the Federal service in 1917, introduced by Mr. Hoffman, having considered the same, report thereon with the recommendation that it do pass with the following amendment:
Line 8, after the word “been", insert "or may thereafter be".
A similar bill was favorably reported to the House during the Seventieth Congress. The report made at that time contains a letter from the War Department on the present measure which is identical to one from Secretary Good. It explains in detail the purposes of the measure, and is therefore made a part of this report, as follows:
(House Report No. 2667, Seventieth Congress, second session] The Committee on Military Affairs, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 15209) to grant relief to those States which brought State-owned property into the Federal service in 1917, having considered the same, report thereon with the recommendation that it do pass with the following amendments, suggested by the Secretary of War:
On page 1, line 9, after the word “been", insert the words“or may hereafter be". On page 2, line 9, between the words "have” and “charged” insert the word “been”.
In 1917, in order to muster State troops for active service in the best possible manner, it became necessary to provide certain articles of equipment that were not available through War Department sources. Various States expended large bums for this purpose, and the Militia Bureau acknowledged the various accounts for quartermaster supplies. Some States never filed a claim with the War Department for the return of this money, but preferred to have it retained on the books of the Militia Bureau as a credit against which it was desired to have charged the money value of approved reports of survey for lost and destroyed Federal property issued to the States in account with the War Department. For several years following the war the Militia Bureau allowed claims against these accounts on approved reports of survey, but on March 26, 1927, the Comptroller General on the claim of the State of Colorado, refused to recognize the existing credit and demanded that the State forward funds in the sum of $25,513.16 to cover payment for the property on the reports of survey referred to.
The matter was the subject of a conference of the adjutant generals and representatives of the interested States at the convention of the National Guard held at Hot Springs, Ark., in November last.
The accompanying report of the Secretary of War sets out the matter in detail and recognizes this legislation, in the light of the request of the various States, as “quite liberal and reasonable."
Washington, January 14, 1929. Hon. JOHN M. MORIN, Chairman Committee on Military Affairs,
House of Representatives. DEAR MR. MORIN: In compliance with your request of December 15, 1928, the following report is submitted on H. R. 15209, for the relief of those States which brought State-owned property into the Federal service in 1917.
At the time the National Guard units of the various States were called into the Federal service in 1917 a number of the States were in possession of military supplies and equipment procured from the following sources:
(a) Property issued to the States by the War Department pursuant to the provisions of sections 82, 83, 84, and 85 of the national defense act.
(6) Property purchased from the War Department by the States out of State funds pursuant to section 86, national defense act.
(c) Property purchased from sources other than the War Department out of State funds.
Title to the property in classes (h) and (c) was in the States, and they were not accountable therefor to the United States.
War Department Special Regulations No. 55, of April 2, 1917, covering the mobilization of the National Guard, provided in paragraph 37 thereof as follows:
“United States property: All arms, ammunition, equipment, supplies, clothing, animals, wheel transportation, and other United States property in the possession of organizations, whether supplied by the United States from Federal funds or purchased by the State authorities, will be taken with the organization or shipped to the mobilization camps or to its new station.
"State, organization, and privately owned property, such as automobiles, trucks, and motor cycles, if taken, should be transported and maintained at the expense of the State, organization, or individual and not at the expense of the United States.
“Suitable animals owned by a State and in the possession of mounted organizations called or drafted into the service of the United States, or owned by the mounted organization or enlisted men thereof, may be sold to the United States at the company rendezvous (see par. 37) or the mobilization camp. They will not be purchased elsewhere nor taken with mounted organizations called or drafted except to the mobilization camp until sold to the United States
Paragraph 48 of said Special Regulations No. 55 provided for the method of accounting for United States property issued to the National Guard when not in the Federal service, and paragraph 49 provided for the transfer of accountability for such property when the National Guard is called or drafted into the Federal service. Paragraph 49 also provided that any property purchased by a State from the War Department under the provisions of section 86 of the national defense act of June 3, 1916, should be brought into the service of the United States in the same manner as United States property.
On July 3, 1917, the chief of the Militia Bureau issued Circular Letter No. 1, in which, after stating that many inquiries received from State authorities suggested the advisability of a general letter on the subject of “Federal property, stated in paragraph 4 thereof:
“State authorities should insist upon prompt settlement, by supply officers, of transfers of property to Federal service. All adjustments necessary should be made between date of draft and date troops are moved to concentration camp.
Where questions are not settled promptly by survey officers appointed by the local commanders (see Army Regulations 711), same should be submitted to the department commander for proper action. The law requires that all articles of field equipment in the State which have been purchased from the War Department be transferred to Federal service and taken up as Federal property by the supply officers. For this class of property the State will receive reimbursement in kind, and not money value. (See sec. 86, act of June 3, 1916, supra.) There is still another class of property in some States, viz, that purchased with funds appropriated by the State and from sources other than the War Department. For such properly brought into Federal service with organizations of the National Guard, the State will receive reimbursement in kind. (Italics supplied.)
Under date of May 31, 1918, the Chief of the Militia Bureau requested of the Secretary of War instructions as to the action that should be taken upon claims presented by various States for State-owned property brought into the Federal service which had been purchased by the States from sources other than the War Department. This communication was referred to the Judge Advocate General, who rendered an opinion thereon on June 19, 1918, published in Opinions of the Judge Advocate General for 1918, volume 2, page 476. In this decision it was held as follows: (a) As to State-owned property purchased from sources other than the War Department, and brought into the Federal service prior to June 3, 1917, there was no promise of reimbursement in kind; therefore such property should be regarded as requisitioned property and should be paid for in cash, if the States so requested; (b) as to State-owned property purchased by the States from sources other than the War Department and brought into the Federal service after July 3, 1917, reimbursement should be made in kind, unless a money payment would be in the interest of the United States.
By Circular Letter No. 18, dated July 15, 1918, the Militia Bureau called upon the adjutant generals of all the States for itemized lists of State-owned property purchased from sources other than the War Department, taken into Federal service (classified as to Quartermaster, Ordnance, Signal, Engineer, and Medical), such lists to show the date of original purchase by the State, date of transfer to the Federal service during 1917, condition at time of transfer, and valuation upon which the State claimed reimbursement, the lists to be accompanied by the best obtainable corroborating evidence of such transfer and acceptance by the Federal Government. The States were also to indicate whether reimbursement in kind or in cash was desired. The claims submitted by various States in response to this letter appear to have been classified into two groups, viz: (a) State-owned property purchased from sources other than the War Department and brought into the Federal service prior to July 3, 1917; (b) Stateowned property purchased from other than War Department sources and brought into the Federal service after July 3, 1917.
The claims under (a) above were transmitted to the General Accounting Office for direct settlement, and from the information available it appears that some of them were allowed and settled, but that others were disallowed.
Claims under (b) above were, if the State desired reimbursement in kind, approved by the Secretary of War and the amount of the approved claim was then set up on the books of the Militia Bureau as a credit in favor of the respective States. If the State asked for a cash reimbursement, the claim was transmitted to the General Accounting Office for settlement.
After the armistice the members of the National Guard who had been drafted into the Federal service in 1917 were discharged from the service of the United States and were returned to their homes as individuals. None of the State-owned military property and equipment which had been brought into the Federal service by the National Guard units in 1917 was returned to the States. The result was that there was no organized National Guard in the various States and there was no military property in the possession of the various States to equip the National Guard when it should be reorganized.
Under the act of June 11, 1919 (41 Stat. 126, 127), and subsequent acts, authorizing the Secretary of War to issue to the National Guard from stores on hand, purchased for the United States Army such articles of clothing and equipment material as was needed by the National Guard, large quantities of military supplies were issued to the various States for their reorganized National Guard units. These issues were made “without charge against militia appropriations" and the acts in question specifically provided that these issues should be “reimbursement in kind for all Federal property brought into service by State troops.”' Similar provisions were contained in the War Department appropriation acts of June 5, 1920; June 30, 1921; June 30, 1922; March 2, 1923; June 7, 1924; February 12, 1925; and April 15, 1926.