Herbert Hoover photo

The President's News Conference

October 17, 1930


THE PRESIDENT. At the Cabinet this morning we had a thorough discussion of the unemployment situation in the country, and I have requested Secretaries Lamont, Davis, Wilbur, Hurley, Hyde, Mellon, and Governor Meyer of the Federal Reserve Board to formulate and submit to me plans for continuing the strengthening the organization of the Federal activities for unemployment during the winter.

There are three directions, as you know, in which the Federal Government activities can cooperate. The first is in cooperation with the Governors in their organizations, together with those of the municipalities and local bodies. And second, in the development of methods of assistance in our national industries, and finally in our own direct public works and employment.

You will remember that 10 months ago I set up such arrangements with the Governors in these various directions. At that time the Governors of many of the States established strong committees and in many cases subcommittees in the counties and townships for cooperation with welfare bodies, local authorities, and industries on unemployment generally for assistance in the situation. The present condition of these organizations varies a good deal in the different States and permits a great deal of shift in the locus of unemployment during the last 10 months, but in the majority of the industrial States the Governors are taking very active steps or furnishing the initiative to reorganize and develop their various State and municipal activities.

I have been in communication with the Governors of several of the States during the last 2 weeks as to methods by which we might further cooperate, and the Cabinet committee will take up and expand those ideas. And they will also take up the problems anew with the national industrial groups--railways and utilities, manufacturing industries--to effect what organization there can best be carried out. And we shall also, again, review our situation in Federal public works. There are no two States and municipalities where the problems and the results exist in the same fashion. With 10 months experience behind us, we find a good deal of development of new ideas and new methods suggested in the directions in which we can cooperate and in which the States can expand their activities.

The initiative of the Governors and the mayors and of the authorities has been well shown during the last 2 or 3 weeks. The Governor of Illinois has recently appointed a new commission on unemployment. The renewed efforts of the mayor of Detroit are notable. The new efforts made in New York State, and especially the efforts made in the State of Ohio, where they have the most efficient of all the national organizations, which has functioned with a great deal of effect during the whole of the last 10 months. All of them indicate a very strong feeling of local responsibility and determination to meet the situation during the winter. The broad fact is that as a nation we must prevent hunger and cold amongst our people who are in honest difficulties.


Another item which I have today is that General [Frank T.] Hines has decided to give up the very fine appointment that he had in business and stay with us in the Veterans' Bureau [Administration]. He is doing this at a very considerable sacrifice, but I am convinced that he is the one man in the country who can best carry out the reorganization of the consolidated services. All of the bureaus have begun to show great economies in administration as the effect of the consolidation, and I believe the country has to draft the General to carry it through.

Note: President Hoover's one hundred and forty-seventh news conference was held in the White House at 4 p.m. on Friday, October 17, 1930.

On the same day, the White House also issued a text of the President's statement on organization of Federal activities for employment (see Item 332).

Herbert Hoover, The President's News Conference Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/212018

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