456 House Office Building
Washington, D. C.
November 15, 1961

WHAT CONGRESS DID: PART I

From the 1st session of the 87th Congress emerged 401 bills affecting all of us directly or indirectly.

In this and subsequent reports I'll discuss briefly some of the major legislative action. I've arbitrarily divided the issues into categories of "domestic, " "foreign and defense," and "Arizona."

Here are some of the major domestic actions taken by Congress:
 

HOUSING ACT
 

Provides $4.88 billion in loans and grants to cities, towns and rural areas for urban renewal, public housing, elderly housing, farm housing, college housing, community facilities, development of "open space" in cities, mass transportation, home improvement, housing for moderate-income families, and liberalizes FHA home mortgage insurance program ... Allows guaranteeing of long - term loans for home fallout shelters ... Last year in Arizona, the FHA guaranteed $171,103,000 worth of loans made by private lending institutions for the construction of homes and apartments and for improvements to existing structures.
 

EMERGENCY UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION
 

Additional 13 weeks of benefits granted to unemployed workers ... Arizona unemployed who had exhausted their regular benefits collected $1,129,159 in the period April through August ... Unemployed railroad workers were also granted emergency benefits and payments in Arizona total $220,000 through September 30.
 

AREA REDEVELOPMENT ACT
 

$394 million program of loans and grants designed to

help city and rural areas of low income and/or chronic unemployment ... After state and federal approval of an overall program for economic development, loans and grants maybe obtained to build new plants, refurbish existing ones, improve public facilities, pay workers being retrained, etc. ... In Arizona, counties of Apache, Mohave and Navajo and and Indian Reservations of Colorado River, Fort Apache. Gila River, Hopi, Navajo, Papago, San Carlos and Salt River have been designated rural redevelopment areas ... Clarence Wesley, tribal chairman of the San Carlos Apaches, has been named to the National Public Advisory Committee on Area Redevelopment.
 

MINIMUM WAGE
 

3,600,000 new employes, mostly in retail and service fields, brought under coverage of Fair Labor Standards Act ... Act provides for overtime for hours worked beyond 40 weekly ... Newly-covered employes due federal minimum wage of at least $1 an hour, going in steps in four years to $1.25 an hour ... Workers previously covered by Act go to $1.15 now and $1.25 in two years ... Immediate affect has been to raise nearly 2 million workers from $1 to $1.15 an hour and to increase pay of 663,000 retail workers up to $1 an hour.
 

FEDERAL JUDGESHIPS
 

For Presidential appointment of 73 new judges (10 circuit, 61 permanent district, 2 temporary district) ... Arizona received one permanent district judge.
 

HIGHWAY ACT AMENDMENTS
 

Authorized additional $11 1/2 billion to keep on schedule the 41,000 mile Interstate System and set new highway user taxes ... Billboard control 
provision extended until July 7, 1963 ... Arizona in 1960 fiscal year received $30 1/2 million of federal funds for all types of roads.


 
VETERANS HOME LOANS
 

Extended program of VA home loan guarantees and direct loans for World War II veterans until July 25, 1967 and for Korean veterans until February 1, 1975 ... Provides additional $1.2 billion for the direct home loan program ... (Direct loans made by VA where private financing not available) ... For year ending August 31, 1961, VA in Arizona guaranteed 2,803 loans worth $35,157,427 ... Direct loans made for the same period totalled 129 worth $1,301,133.
 

SOCIAL SECURITY CHANGES
 

Lowered optional retirement age for men from 65 to 62 (with reduced benefits) ... Provides $780 million in new or increased benefits during the first 12 months to an estimated 4.4 million persons ... Raised minimum benefit from $33 to $40 ... Increased widow's benefits by 10 per cent ... Raised earnings ceiling for retired persons ... Broadened insured status requirements ... Increased federal share of state programs for needy aged, blind and disabled ... Social Security payments of all kinds to Arizona last fiscal year totalled $76 million.
 

WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT
 

Broadened and extended act to June 30, 1967 ... This is program of federal aid to communities for constructing waste treatment plants ... Arizona cities received $631,687 last year and $822,320 so far this year ... Biggest recipient in state: Phoenix whose five grants total $1,169,697 ... Other communities which have received grants are Tucson (6), Pima County, Holbrook, Scottsdale (5), Clarkdale, Douglas, Oracle ... Flagstaff has $82,300 request pending ... Other communities expecting to request $1 million total this year include Kingman, Seligman, Payson, Superior, Mammoth, Tombstone, Cottonwood, Camp Verde, Gila Bend, Bullhead City, Parker, Chandler, Globe-Miami, Yuma, Youngtown.

AID FOR AIRPORTS
 

Program extended for three years ... $225 million authorized for grants to states and localities for construction and improvement of airport facilities ... In the 12 months ending last June 30, Arizona cities were granted a total of $1,125,727 in federal aid for their municipal airports ... Phoenix received $573,252; Tucson, $475,688; Flagstaff, $65,758, and Chandler, $11,029 ... Mesa request for $52,225 and Coolidge request for $1,889 were withdrawn by the communities.
 

MILK FOR NEEDY CHILDREN
 

Program of providing milk for underprivileged children extended until June 30, 1962 ... Authorization raised from $95 million to $105 million ... Agriculture Department in fiscal year 1960 spent $485,292 in Arizona for this program.
 

ANTI-CRIME ACTIONS
 

Attorney General received "package" of anti-crime legislation.. Makes it unlawful to use wire communication facilities to transmit gambling information in interstate commerce ... Outlaws interstate transportation of wagering paraphernalia such as numbers slips ... Outlaws interstate travel or distribution of proceeds in connection with gambling, drug, prostitution or liquor operations that are in violation of federal or state law.
 

STOCK MARKET INVESTIGATION
 

Securities and Exchange Commission directed to study adequacy of rules of national securities exchanges and associations so as to protect the average investor from fraudulent practices... $750,000 allotted ... Report to Congress required by January 3, 1963.



 
[NOV 15, 1961]

(We are still experimenting with the form of our newsletters, weighing readability, speed of reproduction and cost. Though in different form, this report is a continuation of our last newsletter which was printed.)
 
 

CONGRESSMAN'S REPORT

by Morris K. Udall

WHAT CONGRESS DID: PART II

I have characterized the past session as one of moderation, pointing out that the session is attacked by the liberals as "disappointing" and by the GOP "truth squads" as "too radical."

Congress has acted on many international and national problems but with caution. This, I believe, is a reflection of the mood of the people.

Continuing with brief reports on some of the DOMESTIC actions ...

Juvenile Delinquency Act

Establishes a three year comprehensive program of federal assistance to states, local and private agencies to develop pilot programs to devise methods for combatting juvenile delinquency. Authorizes $10 million during each of the three years.

Saline Water Conversion Expansion

Program expanded and extended for six years. $75 million a year authorized for research and for development and operation of demonstration plants to convert sea and brackish water to fresh water.

Mine Safety Study Authorized

Secretary of Interior authorized to conduct two year study covering causes and prevention of accidents and illness in both metal and nonmetallic mines, excluding coal and lignite mines.

Small Business Act Amendments

Borrowing authority increased by $105 million. New program to assist small firms to obtain fair share of federal contracts. In the first eight months of this year, 36 small Arizona firms received loans of $2,578,300. In addition, the Small Business Administration was instrumental in awarding 193 prime contracts totaling $4,168,782 to state businesses.

Mexican Farm Labor Program Extended

Extension is for two years. Program modified slightly to require U.S. employers to make reasonable effort to obtain domestic farm workers at wages, hours, and working conditions comparable to those offered Mexican workers. Employment of Mexican farm workers (braceros) reached a peak of 14,300 in Arizona last year.

Federal School Aid for Impacted Areas Extended

School Districts in which there is federal activity will continue to receive aid for construction and operation of schools. Extension is for two years. One third of Arizona's school districts received $7 million in such aid in the 1960-61 school year.

Subsidies for Small Lead-Zinc Mines

A four year program of assistance with a total of $16 million authorized (but not yet appropriated). in Arizona an estimated 24 mines would be eligible to receive a total of about $245,000 the first year.

Citizens Win Vote

The 23rd Amendment to the Constitution was implemented when procedures were established so residents of the District of Columbia can vote for president and vice-president in 1964.

MORE


 
Page Two---Congressman's Report---WHAT CONGRESS DID: PART II
 


FOREIGN AND DEFENSE MEASURES

While Congress enacted much important domestic legislation, the attention of representatives and senators more and more was drawn to the increasing crises on the international scene. Some of the actions which resulted:

Largest Peacetime Defense Budget

Expenditures for the military function of the Department of Defense and for foreign military assistance activities will total about $48.4 billion. That will represent 54 per cent of all federal expenditures. Congress increased Defense Department appropriations $6.4 billion over the amount set for 1961. The aim is to provide superior nuclear and non-nuclear striking forces. The Defense Department spent more than $214 million in Arizona last fiscal year.

Civil Defense

Congress gave the Defense Department responsibility for protecting the civilian population and allocated $207 million for a shelter survey program now underway. Another $100 million dollars was allotted for emergency supplies.

Atomic Energy

$2.7 billion will be spent for nuclear weapons development and production, purchase of uranium concentrates, the civilian atomic power development program, and other activities of the Atomic Energy Commission. AEC fellowships and assistance to Arizona schools totaled $49,603 in 1960 fiscal year. It is estimated that AEC will spend $6.2 million for uranium purchases this year.

Space Race

$1.7 billion authorized for the National Aeronautics and Space Agency and the race for supremacy in space.

Foreign aid (which I have covered in a nine-page report), the Peace Corps, increased authorizations for Food for Peace Program, funds for Inter-American Social and Economic Cooperation Program, authorization for presidential call-up of 250,000 ready reservists, creation of a U.S. Arms Control Agency, and resolutions expressing the sense of Congress against seating of Communist China in the United Nations are all further manifestations of congressional action in the broad and related fields of defense and foreign activity.

ARIZONA LEGISLATION

The Colorado River Bridge near Needles, no longer desired by the Corps of Engineers, was turned over to the counties of Mohave, Arizona and San Bernardino, California. A land exchange to improve Wupatki National Monument was made possible. Other measures affecting various parts of Arizona were given study in committee and by departments, including bills to create Fort Bowie in Cochise County and Hubbell Trading Post in Apache County national historic sites; to further international status for Yuma's airport; to honor Father Eusebio Francisco Kino; to add 16,000 acres to Saguaro National Monument and pave the way for a county park. A bill designed to solve a controversy over uranium mining at Grand Canyon passed the Senate and is pending in the House of Representatives.

Two subcommittees of the House Interior and Insular Affairs Committee scheduled hearings in Arizona on bills of vital interest to the state. Being aired are proposals to sell mineral rights to owners of surface land in urban and suburban areas and to release public lands which are deemed most suitable for urban activity.

#


Previous Report: October 26, 1961 -- Reflections on the First Session
Next Report: November 16, 1961 (Press only) -- Local Issues and Congress


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