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H. R. 6537 would authorize the sale and donation of certain obsolete, excess, and other property by the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, and the Commander of the Coast Guard to the United States Volunteer Life Saving Corps. The United States Volunteer Life Saving Corps is a corporation which was organized in 1870. It has its principal office in New York City. It consists of volunteer crews of lifesavers and boatmen for every important place where people congregate along the waterways in the State of New York and in other parts of the United States where there is no supervision. They assist in rescue work during hurricanes.

As drafted, there is no provision in the bill requiring that such property first be determined surplus to the needs of all Federal agencies in accordance with the provisions of Public Law 152, 81st Congress, as amended. In addition, no standards are set forth as to the types of property which would be made available for donation or sale. As we interpret the proposed legislation, the determination that property is usable and necessary for the United States Volunteer Life Saving Corps would be the responsibility of the respective Secretaries of the services and of the Coast Guard Commandant.

The control of the donation of personal property under the provisions of the proposed legislation would be entirely outside of the Federal Civil Defense Administration. The determination of usability and need by the service Secretaries and the Coast Guard Commandant would serve to add an additional "specialinterest group" and would result in increased direct donations by the Coast Guard and Department of Defense holding agencies. Such legislation would only add to the difficulty of administering the donation program and would extend and broaden the surplus personal property program beyond the concept of donations through a single State agency as provided under Public Law 655, 84th Congress.

For the foregoing reasons, the Federal Civil Defense Administration opposes the enactment of H. R. 6537.

Advice has been received from the Bureau of the Budget that there would be no objection to the submission of this report.

Sincerely,

L. E. BERRY (For Leo A. Hoegh).

EXHIBIT 3-REPLIES FROM THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE
COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, February 6, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of January 16, 1957, requesting our comments on H. R. 242.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation of surplus property to volunteer fire departments and volunteer rescue or lifesaving squads. We have no direct knowledge of the need of such organizations for surplus property of the Government, nor of the type, value, or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by those organizations. Therefore, we are not in a position to make a recommendation as to the merits of the bill. We note that this bill is one of several which have been introduced to permit donations for purposes not presently authorized by existing law. Such bills would authorize donations to 4-H clubs, youth camps and centers, and similar organizations.

We suggest, therefore, that if legislation to permit donations for such public purposes is deemed necessary or desirable consideration should be given to enacting general legislation rather than legislation on an individual basis.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL,

Comptroller General of the United States.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, January 30, 1957.

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of January 16, 1957, acknowledged January 17, requesting our comments on H. R. 543, 85th Congress, 1st session, entitled “A bill to amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation and other disposal of property to tax-supported public recreation agencies."

The need or desirability of the proposed legislation is not a matter on which we have any special information and, consequently, we are not in a position to make any recommendation as to the merits of the bill. We have noticed, however, that a number of bills have been introduced to permit donations of surplus property for purposes not presently authorized by law. Such bills would authorize donations to volunteer fire-fighting organizations, volunteer rescue squads, civilian defense organizations of the States, 4-H Clubs, and youth camps and centers.

In view of the number and types of organizations we suggest that consideration be given to the advisability of enacting general legislation on the subject rather than legislation on an individual basis.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL,

Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, January 31, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,
House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of January 16, 1957, requesting a report on H. R. 737.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949, to permit disposal of certain surplus property to State defense forces. We have no direct knowledge of the need of the various State defense forces for the type of equipment proposed to be donated to them by the bill nor do we have any information as to the value or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by those organizations. We are not in a position, therefore, to make a recommendation concerning the merits of the bill. We note that H. R. 737 is one of several bills which have been introduced to extend the surplus property donation program. Such bills would authorize donations to volunteer fire departments, volunteer rescue squads, civilian defense organizations of the States and youth camps and centers. We believe, therefore, that consideration should be given to enacting general legislation rather than legislation on an individual basis.

If the bill is given favorable consideration it appears that the statute citation on pages 1 and 2 should be 69th Statutes at Large, page 686, rather than 64th Statutes at Large, page 1072. Also, it appears that the word "sentence" should be substituted for the word "section" following the word "first" in line 5, page 2, of the bill.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL,

Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, January 28, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of January 17, 1957, requesting a report concerning H. R. 2504, which would provide for the

donation of surplus Government property to 4-H clubs for the construction, equipment, and operation of camps and centers.

The need or desirability of the proposed legislation is not a matter on which we have any special information and, consequently, we are not in a position to make any recommendation as to the merits of the bill. We have noticed, however, that a number of bills have been introduced to permit donations of surplus property for purposes not presently authorized by existing law. Such bills would authorize donations to volunteer fire-fighting organizations, civilian defense organizations of the States, and youth camps and centers. In view of the number and types of organizations under consideration in those bills, we believe that general rather than individual legislation might be a preferable means of amending existing law.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,

Washington, February 11, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of February 1, 1957, requesting any comments we may care to offer on H. R. 4007.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation of surplus property to publicly owned water districts and publicly owned sewer districts. We have no direct knowledge of the need of such organizations for surplus property of the Government, nor of the type, value, or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by those agencies. We are not in a position, therefore, to make a recommendation as to the merits of the bill. However, we note that this bill is one of several which have been introduced to increase the scope of the donation program. There have been proposals to permit donations of surplus property for such purposes as volunteer rescue or life-saving squads, volunteer fire departments, and similar organizations.

We believe that, if legislation to permit donations for such public purposes is deemed necessary or desirable, consideration should be given to enacting general legislation rather than legislation on an individual basis.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, February 13, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of February 4, 1957, requesting a report on H. R. 4107.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation of surplus property to volunteer fire-fighting organizations, volunteer reserve services, squads, and first-aid crews. We have no direct knowledge of the need of those organizations for surplus property of the United States, nor of the type, value, or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by those organizations. Therefore, we are not in a position to make a recommendation as to the merits of the bill. We should like to point out, however, that recently several bills have been introduced which would permit the donation of surplus property to similar public organizations. While we do not question the worthiness of such bills, we believe that, if such legislation is deemed necessary or desirable, the enactment of general legislation is preferable to the enactment of legislation on an individual basis.

If the bill is favorably considered, it is believed that it should be redrafted since, apparently, consideration was not given to the recent amendments made to sec

tion 203 (j) of the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 by Public Law 655, approved July 3, 1956 (70 Stat. 493).

Sincerely yours,

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, March 18, 1957.

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of March 4, 1957, requesting our comments on H. R. 5448.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation of surplus real and personal property to public and other nonprofit rehabilitation facilities and workshops. We have no direct knowledge of the need of such organizations for surplus property of the Government, nor of the type, value, or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by those organizations. We are not in a position, therefore, to make a recommendation as to the merits of the bill. We note that this bill is one of several which have been introduced to increase the scope of the donation program. There have been proposals to permit donations of surplus property to 4-H Clubs, volunteer rescue or lifesaving squads, volunteer fire departments, and similar organizations.

We believe that if legislation to permit donations for such public purposes is deemed necessary or desirable, consideration should be given to enacting general legislation rather than legislation on an individual basis.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, March 13, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of March 4, 1957, requesting our views on H. R. 5451.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation of surplus property to municipalities. We have no direct knowledge of the need of municipalities for surplus property of the United States, nor of the type, value, or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by such organizations. We are not in a position, therefore, to make a recommendation as to the merits of the bill. This bill is one of several which have been introduced to permit donations for purposes not presently authorized by existing law. Such bills would authorize donations to 4-H Clubs, youth camps and centers, volunteer fire departments, volunteer rescue squads, and similar organizations.

While we do not question the worthiness of such bills, we believe that, if legislation for such public purposes is deemed necessary or desirable, consideration should be given to enacting general legislation rather than legislation on an individual basis.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

30975-58-7

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, March 12, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of March 4, 1957, requesting our views on H. R. 5460.

The bill would amend section 203 (j) of the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to provide that surplus personal property which is not donated pursuant to the provisions of that section shall, before being offered for sale to the general public, be offered for sale to States and political subdivisions thereof, including municipalities, at a price not in excess of that at which such property was made available to Federal agencies before it was declared surplus.

Under existing law and regulations, property under the control of any executive agency excess to its needs as determined by the head of such agency is first screened for possible transfer to other Federal agencies as provided in 202 (a) of the act. Such excess property not disposed of accordingly, and determined to be surplus, may then be donated for educational, public-health, or civil-defense purposes, including research, as provided in section 203 (j). If not disposed of as above, the property then would become available for disposal as surplus to the general public, as provided by section 203 (c).

The instant bill would not interfere in any way with the first two steps mentioned above. It would, however, give States and political subdivisions the first opportunity to purchase the property before offering the property for sale to the general public.

In view of the purposes of the bill, we have no objections to the enactment of H. R. 5460.

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES,
Washington, March 11, 1957.

Hon. WILLIAM L. DAWSON,

Chairman, Committee on Government Operations,

House of Representatives.

DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Further reference is made to your letter of March 4, 1957, requesting our views on H. R. 5470.

The bill would amend the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 to permit the donation of surplus real and personal property to municipal governments for municipal governmental purposes.

We have no direct knowledge of the need of municipal governments, for surplus property of the United States nor of the type, value or quantity of such surplus property which might be used by those organizations. Therefore, we are not in a position to make a recommendation as to the merits of the bill. We note that this bill is one of several which have been introduced to permit donations for purposes not presently authorized by existing law. Such bills would authorize donations to 4-H Clubs, youth camps and centers, volunteer fire departments, volunteer rescue squads, and similar organizations.

While we do not question the worthiness of such bills, we believe that if legislation for such public purposes is deemed necessary or desirable, consideration should be given to enacting general legislation rather than legislation on an individual basis.

It appears that section 1 (d) of the bill should be amended to provide for striking out the word "respectively" from the paragraph of subsection (j) which would be renumbered as paragraph (6).

Sincerely yours,

JOSEPH CAMPBELL, Comptroller General of the United States.

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