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and there is a way to do it, but this lower middle-income group that I think Senator Taft referred to. That is the way they get their housing, just by evolution, moving up.

The little house that we once lived in today is a slum. It was not when my father and mother lived there. Today it has gone clear down.

What are we going to do with this 8 or 10 percent of our population, the submarginal people that we know are not capable of being home owners, that cannot stand on their own feet?

We will have to do just what we did in Indianapolis.

I know the position that you gentlemen are in. I have served two terms in the Indiana State Legislature, was ranking member of the ways and means committee, and chairman of the social-security committee. I used to sit there in those committee meetings, nothing as elaborate as this, we were in the same position, and tried to figure just as you are trying to figure out what would be the effect of my act, of what I am going to do about this bill, and it seems to me that if we launch into this program, we are saying to one of our classes of people: "We are going to boost you up; we are going to make the remainder of our citizens pay a little extra to give you the kind of house that the planners in Washington think you ought to have"; and to another class of people we are saying, "Just stop being efficient; quit saving your money to buy that little rental property or put it in the building and loan association; level yourself off; pool yourself with your fellows; just get down to their level and be satisfied."

I do not think that is the sort of thing we want to happen. What we are going to do with this 8 or 10 percent of the submarginal class that will always be a housing problem, we got a bill through our legislature. I think it is a local problem. We do not have national slums. We have them in Indianapolis. You have them in Washington. We passed a bill and added 10 cents to our tax rate in Marion County, and that raised a million dollars a year, and we marked off an area 12 blocks long, condemned and bought it. We are going to clear our own slums. And I am absolutely positive that we are going to get more for that little old 10 cents on our tax rate than we would ever get if we sent it down to Washington, and, as my people put it, let the foreigners come in and plan our slum clearance for us.

I think all over America, even today, little people, truck drivers, scrub women, and what not, are being little housers, that the housers call submarginal housers, painting them, putting roofs on them, and moving in and calling them home.

I think that would build greater stability than to house them in public housing, and I think there is a way for the local people to do it. It is a burden to us. It is a subsidy. We know that; 10 cents is a whopping big jump in our tax rate, but our citizens are willing to bear it because they want to do the slum-clearance job themselves. The CHAIRMAN. Is that money earmarked for slum clearance? Mr. TECKEMEYER. Yes; we raise a million dollars a year. As I say, we have marked off the project. I think New York State and City are doing some of that. Others are doing it. I think that is the answer to the clearing out of this submarginal group, to rehouse them some way.

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Slums are not, after all, lumber and roofing and boards and plaster. They are down here. And until we change that, we will not do very much, I do believe, about changing these slum areas that creep into our cities.

If you go into the worst areas and clean the streets and have decent traffic control, and maybe put up a new school instead of building a new school out in some suburban area, you could revitalize these old so-called slum areas, if they are not too far gone, and some of our local money ought to be spent in those areas.

The CHAIRMAN. You say slums are down "in here." You mean it is a matter of the heart?

Mr. TECKEMEYER. I am talking about this submarginal group. The CHAIRMAN. Like the old question, which is first, the egg or the hen, you come up against the under-privileged person. Suppose you or I were one. We cannot live in any better than these rotten shacks, such as you see as you go into Chicago. You see them everywhere. They just live there by force of circumstances. These are conditions they cannot control. A man lives there, and that wretched atmosphere has a moral effect on him, his social life and home life and all. I do not think people choose those things.

The other day we had a woman here from New York who spoke of the work they have done in the Henry Street Settlement. She asked us to come and see them, the change in life, and the social conditions and moral tone of families who got into a home that was a home.

I do not think people choose slums, but perforce they have to turn there to them because there is no other way to live. Right here in Washington, opposite the Dodge Hotel where I live, down the alley, you will see places that you would not put animals in to live. Washington is called a beautiful city. It is not, except in parts. It is wretched, some of it, and squalid in many sections.

Getting back to your thesis, I think slums cause people to decline. Mr. TECKEMEYER. I think we all agree that those areas need some kind of treatment.

The CHAIRMAN. They need condemnation by the municipality that can say "unclean, unclean," and rip them down, and do what you are doing in Indianapolis.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. That is what we are doing, and more and more communities are realizing that for their own good, not because they want to be generous, they have to do something for their own town.

The CHAIRMAN. I think so. I commend you for what you have . done in Indianapolis.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. I think this bill goes a step further, and our people are fearful that it will not only take care of that group, but the next level up who ought to be economically on their own feet and. that this will give us a little competition.

I have to listen to these people. They come into my place, and here will be a widow whose husband has died and left her, and she says, "The rent control has gotten me about down; they have built a lot. of houses and if my people move over there what will I do?"

If we brought these people down here, they would be flabbergasted,. they would be inarticulate, they would not know what to say if they came here before you, except they have their feelings, and as I said,

when I started, I am not here as a lobbyist for anybody. I talked this over with my Senator, and he said, "Why don't you come down and talk to the committee."

The CHAIRMAN. I think it was fine of you to come, and fine of Senator Capehart to bring you here. You made a good presentation from your standpoint.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. I have had very courteous treatment.

Senator SPARKMAN. Your fear is that the Federal Government will move into the upper-income brackets.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. To the next group up.

Senator SPARKMAN. Would you recommend a housing program that would take care of the submarginal group provided you felt that it did not encroach upon that next higher group?

Mr. TECKEMEYER. Provided, yes, there was some guarantee put in that that the slum dwellers would actually be rehoused, and I have never seen it done.

Senator SPARKMAN. Well, you would not have the Federal Government telling a person that he must move from one place to another, just picking that person up and bodily moving him, would you? That sounds like pretty high-powered regimentation to me.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. Well, what I meant was that if we go into an area and rip out the filthy old houses, then let us put the same families who were in those houses back in the clean new houses, and not let the mailman and the policeman and the schoolteacher and the doctor and the dentist and others, who are in a superior financial strata, move into those places.

Senator SPARKMAN. When you say the same person, you would control that, you mean, by controlling the eligibility?

Mr. TECKEMEYER. That is right, and really control the eligibility of it, instead of as in Indianapolis, the people who were moved out of this cancerous area simply spread out all over the country and scattered. Heavens knows where they went. And those who by no means needed to be rehoused are now living in this project that has electric stoves and shower baths, and all of that sort of thing. It has not been a slum-clearance program at all. It was a slum-disturbance program. We simply moved them out and on some place else.

And too many times the project called the slum-clearance area starts with raw land, where there is no slum at all, go right out in the middle of the field and begin a project.

If we are going to spend the money, either Federal or local money, or whoever's money it is, let us go in and rip out the cancer and replace it with some decent housing, and then put the people that you described a moment ago, Senator Tobey, back into that place, and see if we cannot raise their moral standards and all other standards by giving them some decent housing.

The CHAIRMAN. You spoke of the Lockwood Gardens. Is that in Indianapolis? Was not this Lockwood Gardens built by PWA? Mr. TECKEMEYER. Yes.

The CHAIRMAN. And charging subsidized rents for low-income families.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. That is right.


The CHAIRMAN. And as the family incomes went up, rents were increased to an economic rent, which was established as comparable by OPA!

Mr. TECKEMEYER. I think that is right. Rents were increased. The CHAIRMAN. Do you see any objection to that being done when the alternative would be to evict these people when they have no other place to go or to continue subsidies when they are no longer needed? Mr. TECKEMEYER. That is a pretty long question.

The CHAIRMAN. In other words, they were established on a subsidized basis, and as their conditions improved, they raised their rent. Mr. TECKEMEYER. Might I answer that part right there?

When they first established the rents, despite the fact that they wiped out a good bit of the cost and put it on the 32 million dollar basis, I think that is the basis they put it on, they pay very little in taxes, although they have a lot of kids that go to our schools.

The first rent established was far higher than the slum dweller who was moved out of there could afford to pay, so he never got the benefit of it. The first rents they established were too high.

Then as the income of the people in the place went up, they raised the rent three times. Well, maybe you and I can figure out why that is just and fair and right, but the little fellow that owns some_rental property can not see that at all. He just says "By George, I can't raise mine; yet the Government that makes me bow to this business, raises their own rents."

The CHAIRMAN. I would feel the same way.

Mr. TECKEMEYER. They just continually snort and raise the devil about it.

Senator CAIN. Your contention is that it was simply constructed to be a slum-clearance project?

Mr. TECKEMEYER. And did not turn out to be that at all.

Senator CAIN. But the people of the margin were never in there from the day they opened?

Mr. TECKEMEYER. Never have been.

The CHAIRMAN. Thank you, Mr. Teckemeyer, for coming here. Mr. TECKEMEYER. Thank you.

(The prepared statement of Mr. Teckemeyer is as follows:)


My name is Earl Teckemeyer. I am in the real-estate management business in Indianapolis, Ind., and have been in that business for the past 20 years. I manage about 2,000 small rental units owned by about 300 landlords. There isn't a millionaire or a large syndicate mong them and we have no skyscraper apartments. Just small single and double houses; sometimes a four- or six-apartment. My owners are just little folk with a little nest egg invested in rental property, and they are wondering what is going to happen to them and to it. These people have been sorely tried by rent control for the past 5 years and now they have the threat of having the Government becoming a landlord to worry them. They are truly dismayed. This, as they see it from my home town, is even a greater threat to their security that the continued stupid, unjust, and illinformed management of the rent-control program. I came down here to try to tell you why they feel that way.

Senate bill is a monumental piece of literature. It would take a vast library of lawbooks for the average layman to decipher it because various sections throughout continually refer to the repeal of some other section, or the alteration or amendment of it, which exists in some other law to be found in another book. I have tried my best to make it out and have come to the honest conclusion that most of the first part of it concerns additional methods of credit and financing to stimulate housing. Well, if there is anything we do not need more of at the

present time it is more credit. We have always had plenty of that. That isn't what has held up the housing program or increased the shortage of housing. That is one essential part of the bill as I see it. The other main part deals with public housing, and that is the part I am best prepared to discuss with you.

While Senator Taft in his statements to this committee made out lightly that this was only a 4-year program with 125,000 houses to be built per year he neglected to stress the one important fact and that is that while the production of housing will stretch over only a 4-year period, the financing of it will string out for 45 years. That is something to worry about. But, even the dollar squandering isn't as fatal and sordid as the social aspects of a program such as this.

In my humble opinion and in the opinion of the people who own rental property and employ me to look after it for them it is patently unfair to tax one group of our citizens to raise funds to provide housing for another group; housing that the second group probably couldn't afford but housing which some planner or public houser things they are entitled to.

If this thing comes to pass millions of tenants living in federally owned rental units will become mere rank-fillers, followers, drones, their initiative gone, their spirit dulled. They can be and will be controlled as is easily shown by the bulletin I have here, sent out by the Government to thousands of occupants of a group of war housing units. One of the things on the agenda to be discussed at a meeting of the tenants is "registration, etc., for the next election." That isn't even very subtle, is it? People like that won't vote their landlord out of business or out of power while that landlord provides them with top-flight living quarters at cut rates.

Another thing; public housing doesn't pay taxes on the same basis as other competing property such as you and I might own. Oh, I know they pretend to pay a small dib in lieu of taxes, but is it a mere token and the subsidy is thereby increased. It is an additional local burden because the housing dwellers use the schools and every other local facility the same as regular taxpayers. Consider for a moment, gentlemen: Here is a frugal, hard-working citizen, making his home payments, paying his taxes, sending his children through school, and generally carrying the same normal load that millions of other normal Americans carry. Right across the street from this fellow's house, let us say, you build your housing project, and this citizen first mentioned sees his ne'erdo-well, shiftless, and often lazy fellow worker move into a nice new home at less cost than the home owner is paying. And, worst of all, part of the tax on the first fellow pays the freight on the house occupied by the second one. That is a thing my people simply cannot understand. It isn't fair or right or just.

Whenever the State undertakes to pass a law to help just one class or group of citizens it must do so at the expense of the remainder of our citizens. Too many people apparently don't care what happens just so long as it doesn't happen to them.

Aside from the dollar cost the social effects of public housing are bad. Humans are funny. When they first need a little help they get it, take it rather shamefacedly, and are grateful. When they come back for a second helping they aren't quite as shamefaced and not quite so grateful, and by the third trip, by George, you owe it to them. The occupants of public housing cannot but help know that it is a bargain and they will never forsake it; will never try to stand on their own feet again and make their own way. They will be finished and done their initiative shot to pieces.

At home we have a small project. One of those made-work projects started back in the depression. The slum dwellers moved out and on and their financial superiors moved in. Then, we have recently learned that during the war, with all the subsidies, etc., the place wasn't on a paying basis, so they raised the rents three different times. That is a sordid thing. While rent control was good enough for Mr. Average Citizen and his Government made him bow to it, the same rules did not apply to his Government and the Government could and did raise rents. This is another thing my simple folk back home cannot understand. As to costs of housing I have checked many projects and have some photographs here of certain projects. The privately built house was of much better construction, was started at the same time in the same locality and it cost $5,200, was ready for occupancy in 4 months, and had an OPA rent ceiling of $37.50. The remainder of the units in this project were built by the public housers. They cost $6,000, were allowed to rent for $50 per month, and took 9 months to complete. It is the same wherever you go.

Every argument ever made for getting the Government into the housing business could also be made for getting the same Government into any other business.

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