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I notice, too, that I am sort of in a minority here. I am the only businessman that I heard this morning, I think. Therefore, maybe what I have to say may be important or it may not be. However, we do employ over 100 employees in our Washington and Baltimore offices. We have made a sort of canvass of the people in our employ and it is definitely my opinion, and I can say it from what I have heard around here, that there is a very definite need for full-fledged citizenship rather than second-class citizenship.

I don't purport to be a student of constitutional law but I am an American citizen and a businessman.

The pending home-rule bill is not perfect, but a step in the right direction in giving District citizens more voice in operation of their own city and to make Washington a true municipality; that is, one having real self-government. It has been charged that Washington residents lack civic consciousness. If this is true, perhaps it has resulted from the conditioned thinking of Washingtonians along the lines of: "What's the use of suggesting, protesting, or aiding in matters of civic improvement when we have no final voice or authority?". Certainly the pending bill would encourage the publicspirited citizen to show more interest in his own home town.

I do not pretend to represent all businessmen in Washington, but I believe more than 100 of our employees here represent a median of all public opinion in Washington. This cross-section of Washington people includes native Washingtonians of several generations and those from almost every part of the Nation. The nature of our business keeps all of our firm in pretty close contact, including exchanging views on civic affairs. It seems important to me that practically every one of our employees favors home rule, and especially important if they represent-as I truly believe they do—the hopes and aspirations of most Washington people.

So I sincerely urge this committee to do everything possible to expedite a vote on the pending bill.

Mr. HARRIS. Thank you very much, Mr. Mars, for a fine statement.

The next witness will be Miss Sylvia Altman, vice president of the Central Suffrage Conference.

Do you care to file your statement, Miss Altman?
Miss ALTMAN. I would like to make a brief statement.

Mr. HARRIS. I would like to remind you that the House is in session. You may come around.



Miss ALTMAN. I am Sylvia Altman, vice president of the Central Suffrage Conference.

In his statement the president of the Central Suffrage Conference, Mr. Culver Chamberlain, presented to you the general position of our organization and our vigorous endorsement of the Kefauver bill for home rule, as adopted unanimously by the Senate during the current session.

As vice president and chairman of the labor unions committee of the conference, I should like to emphasize the views of the labor members of the conference. Those comments are intended to be supplementary to the direct official statements, made to you by designated spokesmen of the separate branches of the Washington labor movement. Through the Central Suffrage Conference, representatives of the AFL and CIO jointly and informally reaffirm the strong approval by organized workers of Washington of the Kefauver bill granting suffrage to residents.

The organized workers of the city totaling an estimated 200,000 men and women belong to organizations based on the practice of suffrage. In their union halls they use the ballot and membership meeting for determination by majority vote of major issues within the jurisdiction of the trade-union. They firmly believe the right of suffrage should be extended to the larger area of general citizenship for themselves and all other qualified adult members of the community.

Labor, as represented in the Conference, favors the bill first as a matter of principle, on the grounds that disfranchisement of a large block of citizens of the United States is inimical to a healthy democracy, particularly at this time in world history; and, second, as a matter of efficiency, on the grounds that Congress should be relieved of the unnecessary burden of dealing with local matters, much more properly the responsibility of a local administration directly responsible to the electorate.

Specifically, we strongly endorse the administrative reorganization into functionally arranged departments. We believe there is great need for the immediate creation of a labor department of the District of Columbia. The present administrative structure is cumbersome and inadequate. The piecemeal approach to labor problems through a blast of overlapping Federal and local agencies is costly and ineffective for the whole community. A case in point is the recent lengthy and costly strike in the building industry: Undoubtedly, the availability of the resources of a single local labor department would have saved much time and money for both labor and management, and facilitated working out the problem in a manner consistent with the general welfare.

Labor also strongly favors the provision for an elected board of education. In the view of the Conference's labor representatives, only an elected board truly representative of the people can determine educational policies reflecting the will and needs of all the people. Under the appointive system, the 200,000 organized workers in this city, together with their families, have never since its creation had a seat on the board, despite strong representations by official labor delegations. We believe the appointive system by its very nature is an inadequate procedure for governing the educational system of a large metropolis like Washington.

Labor also strongly endorses the formula for a Federal payment as provided in the Kefauver bill. Many of the problems of the District stem from inadequate and uncertain finances. This provision for part of a stable income to be derived from a proportionate Federal contribution, when budgeted by an elected administration, in our view would alleviate some of the glaring inbalance in such areas as construction of schools and other public works and the health and social-welfare field.

The many other arguments in favor of this bill are too familiar to the gentlemen of the committee for me to take much more of your time.


In view of the provision for a referendum, which would guarantee placing the final determination on home rule per se in the hands of all the people of Washington, it is our view that there can be no serious or justifiable reason for delaying this test. We strongly endorse the Kefauver bill and ask the committee to act promptly in meeting the request of President Truman to secure bipartisan action on the floor of the House during this session.

Mr. HARRIS. Thank you very much.
Mr. TEAGUE. Miss Altman, do you believe that this is the Federal

Miss Altman. Yes, for the purposes it was set up as the seat of Government.

Mr. TEAGUE. If the territory was ceded back to Maryland, wouldn't that relieve a lot of the trouble?

Miss Altman. I don't believe I can do better than to quote the founding fathers, the quotation which has been mentioned so often and so frequently, that while this was created for governmental purposes, that did not or it was not intended that the people of Washington would be deprived of suffrage, but that they would continue their suffrage.

Mr. HARRIS. Thank you very much for your statement.
The next witness will be William A. Roberts.


Mr. ROBERTS. I am William A. Roberts, senior partner of the law firm of Roberts & McInnis, in the Mayflower Office Building in Washington.

Beginning in 1930, I served for a period of 6 years as special assistant corporation counsel, and by appointment of President Roosevelt, as people's counsel of the District of Columbia. During that time I had charge generally of litigation involving the valuation rates and taxes of public utilities in the District. In addition, I was asked to supervise the preparation of a complete analysis of the economic and political history of the government of the District of Columbia.

These studies involved an analysis of city manager and other departmental types of municipal government and their application to the city-state problems of Washington. Although conducted with complete independence, the study resulted in conclusions essentially dissimilar from those of the Brookings Institution and of all other specialists in municipal operation, who spent sufficient time on the finances and operation of the District of Columbia to become aware of its problems. In

my considered judgment, not less than 10 percent of the costs of operation of the District of Columbia could be saved with an efficient departmental government of the type which would be made possible under the pending bill. Such a governmental form will not be established, with the proper allocation of duties and personnel, unless responsible and determined managerial personnel who are convinced of its propriety are installed and supervised by persons whose prime interest is the District of Columbia and its institutions. The results sought cannot be accomplished unless they have the full support of all elements of the population of the District of Columbia, through the selection of their own officials. People will vote themselves out of unnecessary luxuries, but if deprived of individual responsibility are insatiable in their demands.

While I am concerned, and all of the organizations with which I have been associated are concerned, with efficiency in municipal operation, I have an even deeper reason for desiring the passage of the Kefauver bill. Four of my children were born here in the District of Columbia. Two were in the service during the past war, as I was myself. My eldest son was killed in the infantry in Germany without ever having been a first-class citizen of the United States. As a District of Columbia resident, educated in the District schools and in Georgetown University, he had no vote and could never hope for a vote either for his own municipal government or for representations in Congress or in the executive department of the Government of the United States. There are tens of thousands of others like him. On the average, they are better educated and of a higher level of intelligence than other tens of thousands from countries which have fostered despotism and war-who have come to the United States and in a short time obtained all the rights of first-class citizens.

We are entitled as a matter of right to vote, and Congress has too long deferred the grant of that right for reasons of little substance.

It is true that I would prefer full suffrage, but in the absence of the constitutional amendment required, and in view of the need for controlled experience in the democratic forms among our population, I insist that it is thoroughly worth while to establish municipal suffrage.

If you will examine carefully the rolls of those who have opposed this bill, you will find that they are in organizations which have successfully dominated our municipal authorities, and which have no difficulty in procuring favors in the interests of themselves or of the major corporations they represent. The board of trade includes many estimable men, but they are men representing a single type of social and economic interest. In many cases their dues and expenses are paid by the corporations by which they are employed. The profits and costs of those corporations are their primary interest. They cannot be expected to have equal concern for the needs of tens of thousands, yes hundreds of thousands, to whom the District is a home and a place of work.

I have little sympathy with the other type of critic who shows complete lack of confidence in the democratic processes guaranteed by our Constitution. We cannot, and you must not assume that the majority of those who would be qualified to vote in the District of Columbia will be less patriotic, less honest, or less capable in their judgment than the citizens of your own congressional district. I would be glad to submit an analysis of the racial, religious, educational, and economic status of any of those districts for comparison, if you deem it advisable.

There has been remaining a serious question with respect to suffrage in the District of Columbia. It has been suggested that because of interest in other jurisdictions, the most capable and the most trustworthy men and women would avoid active participation in our elections in the nonmunicipal operations. I can assure you that in the event this bill becomes law, the apparent lack of interest which is fostered by futility under the present administrative form will disappear, and that there will be many who will give their time freely and enthusiastically toward making the District of Columbia a worthy home for first-class citizens.

Mr. HARRIS. Are there any questions?
Mr. ROBERTS. I would like to add a few more comments to the

four pages.

Mr. Harris. You may, if you can be brief.

Mr. ROBERTS. There are here a total of four pages in my statement. Some years ago I wrote a total of 10 volumes on exactly the same subject, which is in the files of this committee also.

Mr. HARRIS. Very well.

Mr. ROBERTS. So I would like to direct myself today only to one point, and I will try not to repeat anything that was in my statement.

I would like to call your attention to the fact that the only central source of opposition with which I am familiar is the board of trade. Now we don't have very effective representative local citizens' organizations in the District, for many reasons; and I say that with no feeling at all because I served in a citizens' association and took part in many of their activities. I was president of the bar association here and served on a number of committees.

The center of the opposition to home rule is in the board of trade, and I would like to suggest to the committee at this time, at the close of these hearings, the reason why the board of trade tends to be against any control of this local city government by masses of people, by lots of people.

I have before me a list of the officers and directors of the Washington Board of Trade for the current year.

Mr. HARRIL. We have it in the record.

Mr. ROBERTS. I find in this list of officers and directors that E. D. Merrill, president of the Capital Transit Co., is secretary; Everett J. Boothby, president of the Washington Gas Light Co., is a director; J. H. Carmichael, president, Capital Airlines, Washington National Airport, is also a director; James B. Edmunds, assistant general passenger agent, Chesapeake & Ohio Railway, is a director; H. Randolph Maddox, president, Chesapeake & Potomac Telephone Co., and William J. J. McManus, vice president, Chesapeake & Potomac Telephone Co., and A. G. Neal, president, Potomac Electric Power Co., are also directors, among others.

Now these officers and directors of the board of trade are very high officials of the utilities of the city, and they have the time, money, and personnel to appear on any committee activities, which they do, and they do it very effectively.

Now in regard to the control of utilities, as you know it is done through the Public Utilities Commission, and the members of that Public Utilities Commission are appointed by the President. They serve usually for a very long period of time, until they die or resign.

Mr. HARRIS. How are they placed on that committee? I am speaking about the members of the board of trade.

Mr. ROBERTS. They are placed in positions on the board of trade by their own self-perpetuating selves.

Mr. HARRIS. Does the board of trade elect them?

Mr. ROBERTS. It elects them through committee action, with which I think you are familiar, and the board of trade itself is a very small fragment of the District of Columbia; that is, the actual electorate control.

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