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AMEND MERCHANT MARINE ACT, 1928

FEBRUARY 15, 1930.—Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the

state of the Union and ordered to be printed

Mr. White, from the Committee on the Merchant Marine and

Fisheries, submitted the following

REPORT

(To accompany H. R. 9553]

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The Committee on the Merchant Marine and Fisheries, to which was referred H. R. 9553, amending sections 401, 402, and 404, of the merchant marine act, 1928, having considered the same, report the bill to the House with the following amendments:

No. 1. Insert in the first section, after the figures "1928," the words in parentheses "United States Code, title 46, section 891e; Fortyfifth Statutes at Large, part 1, page 692.”'

No. 2. Insert after the word "act" in line 7, the words in parentheses “United States Code, title 46, section 891f; Forty-fifth Statutes at Large, part 1, page 692.”

No. 3. Strike out the period at the end of line 9 and insert a comma in lieu thereof.

No. 4. Insert after the words “volume of mail” the words "and commerce".

No. 5. Insert after the word “act” in line 10 the words in parentheses “United States Code, title 46, section 891h; Forty-fifth Statutes at Large, part 1, page 693."

In compliance with the Rules of the House there follow the present law and the proposed amendments. The matter printed in italics represents the new matter to be inserted and the matter inclosed in brackets represents that to be stricken out:

SEC. 401. All mail of the United States carried on vessels between ports [exclusive of ports in the Dominion of Canada other than ports in Nova Scotia] between which it is lawful under the navigation laws for a vessel not documented under the laws of the United State to carry merchandise shall, if practicable, be carried on vessels in respect of which a contract is made under this title.

SEC. 402. As soon as practicable after the enactment of this act, and from time to time thereafter, it shall be the duty of the Postmaster General to certify to the United States Shipping Board what ocean mail routes, in his opinion, should be established and/or operated for the carrying of mails of the United States between ports [exclusive of ports in the Dominion of Canada other than ports in Nova Scotia] between which it is lawful under the navigation laws for à vessel not documented under the laws of the United States to carry merchandise, distributed so as equitably to serve the Atlantic, Mexican Gulf, and Pacific coast ports, the volume of mail and commerce then moving over such routes and the estimated volume thereof during the next five years, the times deemed by him advisable for the departure of the vessels carrying such mails, and other requirements necessary to provide an adequate postal service between such ports.

Sec. 404. The Postmaster General is authorized to enter into contracts with citizens of the United States whose bids are accepted, for the carrying of mails between ports [exclusive of ports in the Dominion of Canada other than ports in Nova Scotia] between which it is lawful under the navigation laws for a vessei not documented under the laws of the United States to carry merchandise. He shall include in such contracts such requirements and conditions as in his best judgment will insure the full and efficient performance thereof 'and the protection of the interests of the Government. Performance under any such contract shall begin not more than three years after the contract is let, and the term of the contract shall not exceed 10 years.

The three amendments striking out the words “exclusive of ports in the Dominion of Canada other than ports in Nova Scotia,” have but a single purpose. As the law now is, it is impossible to award a mail contract to any line operating between the United States and Canada other than a line to Nova Scotia. This constitutes a legislative discrimination against these lines which your committee believe should be removed. Our trade with Canada constantly grows. The change places no obligation on the department to declare any route an essential mail route or to award a contract to any operator of ships. It simply puts Canada in the same position with respect to this legislation as Mexico and in recognition of the growing water borne trade between Canadian and American ports, it gives the Post Office Department the authority at the proper time and should a proper case arise, to award a contract for carrying the mail to Canadian ports just as it may do between ports of the United States and the ports of any other country.

. The amendment inserting the words “and commerce" after the words “volume of mail” does not change in any manner the authority of the Postmaster General to award mail contracts. It does, however, require that in studying the question of essential mail routes, he shall give heed to the volume of commerce moving over contemplated routes and it necessitates that the Shipping Board in determining the type, size, speed, and other characteristics of the vessels to be employed, shall take into consideration the cargo-carrying capacity thereof. It is the thought of the committee that vessels under contract should in the run of cases, be cargo carriers as well as mail ships.

The committee gives its unanimous approval to this legislation.

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FIRST DEFICIENCY APPROPRIATION BILL, FISCAL YEAR

1930

FEBRUARY 17, 1930.-Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the

state of the Union and ordered to be printed

Mr. Wood, from the Committee on Appropriations, submitted the

following

REPORT

[To accompany H. R. 9979)

The Committee on Appropriations, in presenting the accompanying bill making appropriations to supply deficiencies in certain appropriations for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1930, and prior fiscal years, to provide supplemental appropriations for the fiscal years ending June 30, 1930, and June 30, 1931, and for other purposes, submit the following explanation thereof:

The estimates upon which this bill is based were submitted in the following House Documents of the present Congress: Nos. 39, 137, 141, 143, 145, 166, 167, 168, 169, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 235, 236, 237, 238, 239, 241, 242, 243, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 255, 257, 264, 265, 267-270, 272, 274, and 285, aggregating in all $51,398,136.01.

The amount recommended to be appropriated in the bill totals $48,177,854.12, which sum is $3,220,281.89 less than the amount of the Budget estimates.

While the bill contains numerous items covering many departments of the Government, a very large proportion of the total amount is caused by sums needed to carry into effect new laws or treaties. The bill also makes provision for a class of items such as judgments of courts, audited claims allowed by the General Accounting Office, and claims adjudicated under statutes and certified to Congress for appropriation. There is also a large number of items covering emergencies in the public service which have arisen since the regular appropriations were made. The pure “deficiencies” are few in number and small in amount, the bulk of the amount coming under the term "legal deficiencies.”

HR-71-2-VOL 2 23

The principal amounts are set forth in the following explanations under the various departments and establishments:

LEGISLATIVE

By the legislative pay act approved June 20, 1929, Congress increased the compensation of officers and employees of the legislative branch so as to place them more nearly on an equality with the employees in the executive departments. The act took effect July 1, 1929, and the sum of $910,641.38 is included in the accompanying bill on that account.

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

The sum of $50,000 is recommended for gratuity payments to beneficiaries of deceased members and $5,000 is carried for payment under the existing agreement for the preparation and editing of the supplement to the United States Code.

ARCHITECT OF THE CAPITOL

A total of $29,325 is recommended for the Capitol building and grounds, which includes $14,388 on account of the razing of a number of the temporary dormitory buildings on the Plaza and levelling the site, $3,874 for the replacement of a water main in the front of the Capitol building, $3,063 for replacement of plumbing and water mains leading to the Capitol building, $5,000 for emergency painting in various rooms in the Capitol, and $3,000 for emergency repairs and replacements on account of the recent fire.

The sum of $40,000 is allowed for the installation of a 30-inch water main to run from Second and C Streets SE., to the front of the Capitol power plant on E Street to insure an adequate supply of water for that plant without jeopardizing the water supply for that section of the city.

BOTANIC GARDEN

A sum of $12,500 is carried for screening green houses and the installation of a soil sterilizer to conform to the plant quarantine act in connection with the prevention of the spread of the Japanese beetle. Two items for improvement to heating systems in connection with the Botanic Garden have been deferred for consideration in the legislative appropriation bill.

EXECUTIVE OFFICE

An item of $6,000 is carried for miscellaneous contingent expenses and the sum of $200,000 is recommended for maintenance, repair, and alteration of the Executive Mansion, including the rehabilitation and reconstruction of the office building necessitated by the recent fire. The amount for the building is $145,000 of which $30,000 is for air conditioning apparatus.

ARLINGTON MEMORIAL BRIDGE

An appropriation of $200,000 is carried to bring the amount for the current year up to $2,500,000, which is the economical rate of

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