Franklin D. Roosevelt

Letter on the Proposals of the Northern Great Plains Committee.

October 19, 1938

My dear Governor Cochran:

I am sending you herewith a copy of a preliminary report by the Northern Great Plains Committee, entitled "Rehabilitation in the Northern Great Plains." This Committee, which included in its membership representatives of both Federal and State agencies, was appointed at my request by the National Resources Committee to suggest measures, including specific changes in Federal procedure and policy affecting land and water conservation, which might be carried out promptly in order to promote the rehabilitation of the area.

The Committee's recommendations are of three classes from the standpoint of action necessary to effectuate them.

First, certain improvements in the activities of Federal agencies may be made under existing authorizations of the Congress. I approve the recommendations of the Committee in these particulars, and I have directed all executive departments and agencies to modify their procedures accordingly. The report outlines the character of rehabilitation work which will be undertaken by the Federal government during the fiscal year 1939.

Second, several proposed changes in policy may be made only under new authorization of the Congress. I hope that the suggestions of this nature may receive careful study by the Congress at its next session.

Third, the responsibility for a number of basic lines of constructive action rests largely or wholly with state and local agencies. I recommend that you review the proposals of this class, and I hope that you may carry out such of them as are appropriate to the conditions in your state. A large measure of responsibility for the success or failure of a rehabilitation program in the Northern Great Plains rests with the state and local governments.

Sincerely yours,

Hon. Roy L. Cochran,

Governor of Nebraska,

Lincoln, Nebraska.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Letter on the Proposals of the Northern Great Plains Committee. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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