Herbert Hoover photo

The President's News Conference

June 17, 1932


THE PRESIDENT. As you know, the administration was called on to formulate the economy bill. It is now in conference. I am in hopes that the conferees of the House will find it possible to support the so-called furlough plan for dealing with the Federal employees. That is in reality the 5-day week applied to the Government. I am confident it will produce a larger saving in expenditures of the Federal Government than any plan that is likely to pass the Congress, and the objection that it permits discrimination has been met with the proposal that any employees receiving over $1,200 a year to whom it cannot be applied should receive an 8 1/3 percent reduction in pay which would give the equivalent reduction in Government expenses. It avoids discharges and enables some increase in the number of people employed in the Government, because we will have to employ some substitutes. But in the larger sense it maintains the standards of pay in the Government. It must be borne in mind that the Government pay has never been on such high standards as those in private industry.

But it has a wider importance in one House or the other. Under the terms of the bill as it left the Senate, no reorganization of any great consequence could be made effective until 60 days after the meeting of Congress next year, which would take it into March possibly, with all the delays that might happen. And it would result in nothing effective being done during the next fiscal year. The economies we are looking for now we want during the next fiscal year as well as thereafter. The emergency power as left in the bill by the Senate reduces the bureaus and commissions to be immediately dealt with to those expending only $25 million a year, and eliminating bureaus expending between $500 million and $600 million. In other words, it left no great area over which to effect economies through reorganization.

So that, if we are to get real economy in the Government I am in hopes that the conferees will help us to do it with the maximum that can be done under the two bills. And I think that is all.


Q. Mr. President, most of the boys are still celebrating your victory in Chicago, and those of us here would like to congratulate you--

THE PRESIDENT. That is very good of you. I feel very proud of that tribute, and I appreciate very much the attitude of the press about it. They have been most kind.

Note: President Hoover's two hundred and fifty-first news conference was held in the White House at 4 p.m. on Friday, June 17, 1932.

On the same day, the White House issued a text of the President's statement on the economy bill (see Item 199).

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/207069

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