Special Message to the Congress Transmitting Reorganization Plan 3 of 1953 Concerning the Organization of the Executive Office of the President.
To the Congress of the United States:
I transmit herewith Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1953, prepared in accordance with the provisions of the Reorganization Act of 1949, as amended.
The reorganization plan is designed to achieve two primary objectives. The first is to improve the organization of the Executive Office of the President. The second is to enable one Executive Office agency to exercise strong leadership in our national mobilization effort, including both current defense activities and readiness for any future national emergency.
The National Security Resources Board was established by the National Security Act of 1947 to advise the President concerning various aspects of future military, industrial, and civilian mobilization. The areas of responsibility assigned to the Board included the use of national and industrial resources for military and civilian needs; the sufficiency of productive facilities; the strategic relocation of industries; the mobilization and maximum utilization of manpower; and the maintenance and stabilization of the civilian economy.
The vigorous and efficient discharge of these vital functions is not well served by the simultaneous existence in the Executive Office of the President of the National Security Resources Board (charged with planning for the future) and the present Office of Defense Mobilization (charged with programs of the present). The progress of the current mobilization effort has made plain how artificial is the present separation of these functions.
Both functions should now be combined into one defense mobilization agency. Accordingly, the reorganization plan would create in the Executive Office of the President a new agency, to be known as the Office of Defense Mobilization. It would transfer to the new Office 'the functions of the Chairman of the National Security Resources Board and abolish that Board, including the offices of chairman and vice chairman.
The reorganization plan also transfers to the new agency the statutory functions of the present Office of Defense Mobilization. These are of a minor nature, the major functions of the present Office of Defense Mobilization having been delegated to it by the President, principally under the Defense Production Act of 1950, as amended. It is my intention to transfer the latter functions to the new agency by executive order, and to abolish the Office of Defense Mobilization established by Executive Order No. 10193. There will thus result a new agency which combines the activities of the National Security Resources Board and both the statutory and delegated functions of the heretofore existing Office of Defense Mobilization.
The proposed plan would also reorganize various activities relating to the stockpiling of strategic and critical materials. Those activities are principally provided for in the Strategic and Critical Material Stock Piling Act, as amended. It has become increasingly apparent that the policy and program aspects of stockpiling are an integral part of mobilization planning. They should not be administered separately from plant expansion, conservation of materials, and materials procurement under the Defense Production Act of 1950, or from the duties placed in the National Security Resources Board by the National Security Act of 1947. Therefore, the reorganization plan would transfer to the Director of the new Office of Defense Mobilization responsibility for major stockpiling actions, including the determination of the nature and quantities of materials to be stockpiled. In the main, these functions are transferred from the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, and Air Force (acting jointly through the agency of the Munitions Board) and the Secretary of the Interior. The duties of the Administrator of General Services regarding the purchase of strategic and critical materials and the management of stockpiles are not affected by the reorganization plan, except that he will receive his directions, under the plan, from the Director of the Office of Defense Mobilization instead of from the Department of Defense.
This transfer of stockpiling functions will correct the present undesirable confusion of responsibilities. The functions of the heads of the military departments of the Department of Defense and the Secretary of the Interior under the Strategic and Critical Materials Stock Piling Act, as amended, are at present in considerable measure subject to other authority of delegates of the President springing from the Defense Production Act of 1950, as amended. The allocation and distribution of scarce materials among essential civilian and military activities and the continued maintenance of adequate stockpiles of strategic and critical materials are of major current importance. The reorganization plan will make possible more effective coordination and close control over the Government's whole stockpile program. It will speed decisions. It can result in significant economies.
The Department of Defense will, of course, continue to be responsible for presenting the needs of the military services. That Department and the Department of the Interior are specifically designated in the plan as additional agencies which shall appoint representatives to cooperate with the Director of the Office of Defense Mobilization in determining which materials are strategic and critical and how much of them is to be purchased. Final authority with regard to such determination will, however, be in the Director of the Office of Defense Mobilization.
Section 5 (a) of the reorganization plan withholds from transfer to the Director and abolishes the functions of the Chairman of the National Security Resources Board with regard to being consulted by and furnishing advice to the President concerning the placing of orders of mandatory precedence for articles or materials for the use of the armed forces of the United States or for the use of the Atomic Energy Commission, and with regard to determining that a plant, mine or other facility can be readily converted to the production or furnishing of such articles or materials. These abolished functions were vested in the National Security Resources Board by section 18 of the Selective Service Act of 1948 (later renamed as the Universal Military Training and Service Act) and were transferred to the Chairman of that Board by Reorganization Plan No. 25 of 1950. The practical effect of this abolition is to obviate a statutory mandate that the President consult and advise with another officer of the executive branch of the Government.
Section 5(b) of the reorganization plan abolishes the direction, authority, and control of the Secretary of Defense over functions transferred from the Department of Defense by the reorganization plan. The Secretary's functions in this regard are provided for in section 202(b) of the National Security Act of 1947, as amended (5 U.S.C. 171a(b) ).
Section 5 (c) of the reorganization plan abolishes any functions which were vested in the Army and Navy Munitions Board or which are vested in the Munitions Board with respect to serving as the agent through which the Secretaries of the Army, Navy, Air Force, and the Interior jointly act in determining which materials are strategic and critical under the provisions of the Strategic and Critical Materials Stock Piling Act, as amended, and the quality and quantities of such materials to be stockpiled. These abolished functions are provided for in section 2 (a) of the Strategic and Critical Materials Stock Piling Act, as amended.
After investigation I have found and hereby declare that each reorganization included in Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1953 is necessary to accomplish one or more of the purposes set forth in section 2(a) of the Reorganization Act of 1949, as amended. I have also found and hereby declare that by reason of these reorganizations it is necessary to include in the reorganization plan provisions for the appointment and compensation of a Director and a Deputy Director of the Office of Defense Mobilization. The rates of compensation fixed for these officers are, respectively, those which I have found to prevail in respect of comparable officers of the executive branch of the Government.
The reorganization plan will permit better organization and management of the Federal programs relating to materials and requirements and will thus help to achieve the maximum degree of mobilization readiness at the least possible cost. It is not practicable, however, to itemize, in advance of actual experience, the reductions of expenditures to be brought about by the taking effect of the reorganizations included in Reorganization Plan No.3 of 1953.
I urge that the Congress allow the proposed reorganization plan to become effective.
DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER
Note: Reorganization Plan 3 of 1953 is published in the U.S. Statutes at Large (67 Stat. 634) and in the 1949-1953 Compilation of title 3 of the Code of Federal Regulations (p. 1025). It became effective on June 12, 1953.
Dwight D. Eisenhower, Special Message to the Congress Transmitting Reorganization Plan 3 of 1953 Concerning the Organization of the Executive Office of the President. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/231588