Page images

tourist courts. Further, the tourist court, because of its location usually far distant from the business centers of large cities, does not appeal to the average commercial traveler. It is designed for and seeks its patronage among motoring vacationists.

So long as a tourist court maintains its basic identity as a tourist court, there is no necessity for placing controls upon rentals charged by it. The factors which, in an emergency, tend toward inflation of rents charged for ordinary rental housing or commercial hotel accommodations-e. g., concentration of population in large municipal and industrial areas and increased travel by train and plane-actually tend to reduce rentals charged by tourist courts. In such a period of emergency, travel by motor vehicle and vacation travel are drastically curtailed, thereby restricting the market within which the tourist court operates. So long as its operation remains basically that of the typical tourist court, decreased demand will prevent the charging of excessive rentals. Of course, if the court changes its basic operation, by taking in primarily nontransient persons, it then places itself in the category of the rooming house or apartment house and shoud logically be governed by the same rent-control considerations which apply to ordinary rental housing.

In view of the above, it is respectfully submitted that title IV-A, section 432 (f) (1), of S. 1397, which said subsection defines "housing accommodations," should be amended by deleting the period at the end of subsection (f) (1), by substituting a colon, and by adding the following: "Prorided, however, That the term 'housing accommodations' shall not include tourist courts. Tourist courts', as used herein, shall mean any building, structure, or part thereof, or land appurtenant thereto, rented or offered for rent for sleeping or sojourning purposes primarily to persons engaged in transient travel by private motor vehicle.”


The business of tourist courts is seasonal in nature and is therefore subject to terrific fluctuation. Further, the busy season of the tourist courts in one State is often different from the busy season of the tourist courts in another State. Generally speaking, tourist courts in the northern part of the country enjoy their best business in a summer season extending from July 4th to Labor day, and tourist courts in the southern part of the country enjoy their best business in a winter season extending from Christmas to Easter. But even tourist courts in the same State do not experience the same pattern of business fluctuation. For example, though most tourist courts in Florida and South Carolina enjoy their greatest business between Christmas and Easter, tourist courts in certain parts of either State enjoy their greatest business between July 4th and Labor Day.

It is interesting to observe that S. 1337, as presently written, designates as presumptively fair the rents prevailing during the period May 24 to June 24, 1950. This period falls neither in the summer tourist season nor the winter tourist season. Past experience of tourist courts demonstrates beyond any question of doubt that such period is “off season. To use such a period as a criterion in fixing maximum rents for tourist courts could not help but result in gross inequities.

Any individual tourist court is required, as a general proposition, to take in sufficient receipts during its “season” to pay expenses for the entire year and to yield a reasonable profit. Receipts during the “off season" are rarely, if ever, sufficient to pay the expenses of operating the court during such "off season."

In view of the above, it is respectfully submitted that, if S. 1397 is to remain applicable to tourist courts, the bill should make it abundantly clear that the . maximum rent for any individual motor court shall be fixed on the basis of the particular economic circumstances which apply to that motor court. Thus, the maximum rent during such tourist court's “season” should be fixed at a higher figure than the maximum rent for such court's “off season.” Further, if the particular tourist court's “season" is relatively short, its maximum rent applicable during that period should be relatively high.

To accomplish the proposed result, section 452 (a) (2) of S. 1397 should be amended by deleting the period at the end of subsection (a) (2), by substituting a colon, and by adding the following: “Provided further, however, That, if the occupancy of any housing accommodation is predominantly by transient tourist patrons and is subject to seasonal fluctuation, consideration shall be given to such season's fluctuation, in fixing the maximum rent for such housing

accommodation, and the President may establish higher maximum rent for such housing accomodation during its busy season than he establishes for such housing accommodation during its slack season." Respectfully submitted.

By A. J. MACKAY, President.

B. A. SHOEMAKER, Secretary.
MORRIS E. WHITE, Attorney.

JOHN J. TRENAM, Attorney.
The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Birthright, will you come forward, please ?



Mr. ROBINSON. I am here in place of Mr. Birthright. I am John B. Robinson, Dallas, Tex., 22 years a barber, 15 years a journeyman barber, and 7 years a shop owner, owned and operating a shop in Dallas, Tex. I am vice president of the Barbers, Hairdressers, Cosmetologists and Proprietors' International Union of America.

The petitioner, the Journeymen Barbers, Hairdressers, Cosmetologists and Proprietors' International Union of America, is a labor union composed of approximately 75,000 members engaged in the barbering and beauticians' industry. Its principal offices are located at Barbers Building, Twelfth and Delaware Streets, Indianapolis 7, Ind.

A large number of the members of petitioner (approximately 25 percent) own and operate one-chair or copartnership shops, and as such sell the usual type of service rendered to the public in a barber or beauty shop. The barber and beautician business is highly personalized, and the charges for the various services rendered vary greatly from place to place. Approximately 75 percent of the persons engaged in the industry are members of the petitioner union. Approximately 60,000 of the members of petitioner work as employees in barber and beauty shops as barbers, beauticians, manicurists, and at similar work. All wages earned by the barber or beauty operator are directly related to the prices they receive for their service, such wages being negotiated with employers by local unions affiliated with the petitioner. The average employer receives for the service he renders at the chair the same prices, works the same hours, and pays himself on the same basis as his employees. It is the only industry where the employer and employee are equal and interdependent upon one another insofar as the service they render is concerned.

Petitioner's membership is directly affected by the General Ceiling Price Regulation of January 26, 1951, which fixes the maximum prices which may be charged for services rendered, especially by operators of one-chair shops. The formula prescribed for determining such maximum prices should not be applied to the highly personalized services rendered by petitioner's membership, and because of the fluctuating nature of the services rendered and the variation in costs of operation it is impossible to equitably apply a general regulation. Moreover, the difficulties and costs of administration of such regulation are prohibitive and constitute an unreasonable and unnecessary interference with and hindrance to the operations of petitioner's members.

The members of the barber and beauty industries are not paid by the hour or day for the service rendered, their income depending entirely upon the number of patrons they serve and the price they receive for such service. No commodity or article of commerce is involved, and no need exists for the establishment of price controls either in connection with defense production or in the public interest.

The CHAIRMAN. Mr. Robinson, would you mind filing your statement for the record so the other Senators may have the opportunity of reading it?

Mr. ROBINSON. We would be glad to. I have only one more page to read.

The CHAIRMAN. All right, go ahead and read that page.

Mr. ROBINSON. The standard minimum prices established for these industries through collective bargaining must not be confused with commodity-price fixing. A haircut, shave, permanent wave, shampoo, or set cannot be preproduced and placed on the shelf as stock, pending fluctuation of the stock market. Prices depend solely upon the skill of the operator who performs the service.

The Journeymen Barbers, Hairdressers, Cosmetologists and Proprietors' International Union of America for the past 64 years has sought to improve the economic life of the members of the barber and beauty professions. The necessity of establishing a minimum price through collective-bargaining agreement for the purpose of stabilizing the industries has been recognized. If, however, these industries are to be placed under price-control legislation it will create a chaotic condition.

The CHAIRMAN. Is it not a fact that the average man–I know down South the barber shop is more nearly what you say it is: a place of friendship. The average fellow goes to some friend he knows, and it is more than just, as you say, a place of business; it is a place of friendship as well as business. Why should you want to control a price when a fellow might want to go to one barber and perhaps pay more?

Isn't that a fact throughout the country? That is the way it is down home.

Mr. Robinson. Yes, Senator; you are quite right. It becomes highly personalized.

The CHAIRMAN. I spend money on gasoline to go to my friend rather than go in a barber shop where I don't know the fellow. It is personal; it is to me.

Mr. Robinson. The Clayton Act passed by Congress in 1914 states that “the labor of a human being is not a commodity or article of commerce." The members of the barber and beauty industries render a personal service—that is, a service to persons—and, as it is rendered in connection with no commodity or article of commerce and does not affect inter or intrastate commerce, it is our opinion that the barber and beauty industries should not be under price control.

We have barber-license Laws in 46 States and the District of Columbia, administered by a board of barber examiners, established by law, setting up regulations in the interest of public health, public safety, and further providing for promoting and conserving fair competition and sanitary practices. Each barber, before being issued a license to practice, is required to take a practical and scientific

examination conducted by the barber board in these 46 States and the District of Columbia. The applicant must likewise furnish a certificate of health showing that he is free from all contagious diseases, venereal diseases, tuberculosis, and so forth Said license is renewed from year to year and is proof that the operator is free from any and all contagious diseases.

This legislation was sponsored and passage secured through the legislative activities of the Journeymen Barbers, Hairdressers, Cosmetologists, and Proprietors' International Union of America.

In 45 States there are similar laws regulating the practice of beauty culture, all of which are patterned after the barber-license law.

In addition to such laws, 14 States have enacted laws that give to the barber and beauty boards authority to establish minimum prices upon petition of 65 percent or 75 percent of the members licensed and actively engaged in the industry.

The CHAIRMAN. Most of the States have a board of barbers; do they not?


The States having such laws are Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Rhode Island.

In view of the foregoing, we feel that your honorable committee should amend the Defense Act, exempting the barber and beauty industries from price control inasmuch as they are not industries which will process or handle commodities of any kind.

The CHAIRMAN. We thank you very much for your testimony, sir. We are sorry Mr. Birthright was absent, gentlemen, and appreciate your coming

The meeting will stand recessed until 10:30 tomorrow morning.

(Whereupon, at 1:30 p. m., the hearing in the above-entitled matter was recessed until 10:30 a. m. of the following day.)


« PreviousContinue »