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White House Statement Concerning the President's Recommendation of an Additional Repeal of Authorized Appropriations.

January 17, 1947

THE PRESIDENT today recommended to the Congress the repeal of appropriations totaling $563,888,579. Contract authorizations of $132 million involved in those appropriations, were also recommended for rescission.

These amounts are in addition to five previous rescissions which reduced the net authorized Federal program by more than $64 billion.

The President's action is in accord with objectives expressed by the Congress--to maintain a continuous review of unrequired appropriation balances with a view to their recovery.

The major sum recommended for rescission is $325 million, made available to the Maritime Commission and not required because of the liquidation of wartime shipbuilding programs. Involved is the $132 million for which the Congress had given the Commission contractual authority as well as the appropriations.

The reduction in four Navy items accounts for the return of $119 million. These include: $50 million not needed to meet contract termination costs; $50 million of War Department funds advanced to the Navy for the purchase of aircraft materiel and ordnance; $15 million in the Navy's public works program and $4 million no longer needed for emergency ship facilities.

The Atomic Energy Commission reported to the President that $40 million of the present funds will not be needed the current year.

War Department rescissions total $33.5 million. Of this total, $17.5 million had been intended for the construction of buildings and utilities and the purchase of equipment; an additional $15 million represented a net gain to the Government in the form of interest on guaranteed loans to wartime contractors; most of the balance was earmarked for defense housing, seacoast defenses and similar items.

The Treasury Department reported that $10 million, originally intended for the acquisition of vessels and shore facilities by the Coast Guard, could now be returned to the surplus fund.

The President recommended the rescission of $2.5 million of the $5 million emergency fund appropriated for his use by the Congress.

The President's recommendations for rescissions were taken into consideration in estimating expenditures in the 1948 budget.

The President stated that by administrative action he was ordering returned to the Treasury unneeded Lend-Lease funds, not available for obligation after June 30, 1946. Approximately $805 million of the unexpended balance of Lend-Lease appropriations, is being withdrawn from various agencies and carried to the surplus fund of the Treasury. There is also being deposited currently in the Treasury approximately $114 million of funds received from foreign governments in accord with section 6(b) of the Lend-Lease Act.

Amounts no longer required for the financing of certain public works projects by the Bureau of Reclamation, Department of the Interior, are to be recovered and returned by administrative action to the Reclamation fund where they will be available for appropriation by the Congress. It is estimated that $1,522,659 will be involved in this action.

Amounts in excess of current requirements, totaling $213,741,215 now available in special accounts for replacing military equipment and supplies hitherto sold by the War Department, are being carried to the Treasury surplus fund immediately, rather than permitting them to remain available for obligation until June 30, 1947.

Appropriations made to the President for United States participation in UNRRA were not included in the items to be considered for rescission action. Obligation of these funds ceases by law on June 30, 1947. The Congress has appropriated for UNRRA operations a total of 2 percent of the estimated national income for the year ending June 30, 1943, which amounts to $2.7 billion. Other major contributors have done likewise and are making their contributions available in full. The President expressed the belief that it is an obligation of this Government to make its full share available in appropriate goods and services, if this can be done within administrative requirements and the legal time limits for fund obligation. Any other course, he indicated, would not only constitute failure to meet this obligation but would seriously jeopardize UNRRA relief programs vital to the economic and political stability of vast areas in the world.

Note: The President's recommendations together with a letter of the Director of the Bureau of the Budget setting forth the details of the proposal are printed in House Document 55 (Both Cong., 1st sess.) •

For the five previous rescissions see the 1945 volume (this series), Items 124, 134, 146, and the 1946 volume, Items 10, 130.

Harry S Truman, White House Statement Concerning the President's Recommendation of an Additional Repeal of Authorized Appropriations. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/231875

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