THE monumental Report of the Hoover Commission on the Organization of the Executive Branch of the Government has been condensed to a 70,000-word volume by
Frank C. Henighen, editor of the periodical, Human Events.
Mr. Hanighen's condensation describes the findings and recommendations of the
Commission with sufficient fullness to give the reader an excellent, general idea of
that vast undertaking.
FACTS FORUM NEWS now pinpoints his condensation, so that the reader with
limited time to devote to this subject may find a yet more condensed presentation
both stimulating and informing.
Of course, for deeper understanding it would be well for the student to consult
either the original work or the condensation from which this miniature version was
HISTORY OF THE COMMISSION
The first Hoover Commission studied primarily organizational and administrative matters. Its objective was in part
alignment of appropriate agencies.
The second Commission, created by unanimous vote of
Congress on July 10, 1954, and expiring May 31, 1955, could
consider administrative techniques and organizational problems as did the 1949 Commission, but it was also specifically
authorized to examine government policy. In creating this
Commission, the stated objective of Congress was "to promote
economy, efficiency, and improved service in the transaction
of the public business" throughout the Executive Branch. The
Commission could propose the extensive abolition of specific
functions with which the federal establishment has become
The Executive Branch of the Government comprises more
than 2,100 different organizational entities grouped either in
Departments, Agencies, Independent Commissions, or acting
directly under the President. It expends over $65 billion
annually. The Executive Branch currently includes 2,300,000
civilian employees and an additional 3,300,000 members of
the Armed Forces.
The Report reflects a broad area of agreement among
the twelve members. Mr. Hoover has stated that the members
did not divide on party lines. The Commissioners were:
Herbert Hoover, Chairman Chet Holifield
Clarence J. Brown Solomon C. Hollister
Herbert Brownell, Jr. Joseph P. Kennedy
James A. Farley John L. McClellan
Homer Ferguson Sidney A. Mitchell
Arthur S. Flemming Robert G. Storey
The Commission utilized the "task force" approach to meet
its problems. For each area to be examined, eminent citizens
in the field were appointed. In all investigations, the task
forces utilized studies made by the first Commission and by
Chairmen of task forces and subcommittees were:
1. Budget and Accounting: J. Harold Stewart
2. Intelligence Activities: General Mark W. Clark
3. Legal Services and Procedures: James Marsh Douglas
4. Lending Agencies: Paul Grady
5. Medical Services: Chauncey McCormick — deceased Sep
8, 1954; succeeded by Dr. Theodore George Klumpp
a. Subcommittee on Health Insurance: Msgr. Donald
b. Subcommittee on Dentistry: Dr. Otto W. Brandhors'
6. Overseas Economic Operations: Henning W. Prentis, ■"'
7. Paper Work Management: Emmett J. Leahy
8. Personnel and Civil Service: Harold W. Dodds
9. Procurement: Robert Wilson Wolcott
10. Real Property: John R. Lotz
11. Subsistence Services: Joseph P. Binns
a. Subcommittee on Depot Utilization: Clifford E. Hi
12. Use and Disposal of Surplus Property: General Rob"r
13. Water Resources and Power: Admiral Ben Moreell i
14. Committee on Business Organization of the Departmen
Defense*: Charles R. Hook .,
a. Subcommittee on Business Enterprises: Joseph B.
b. Subcommittee on Research Activities: Mervin 1. * .
c. Subcommittee on Special Personnel Problems: Tn0
R. Reid j
d. Subcommittee on Transportation Activities: Pern
The Commission had the final responsibility of <"
recommendations to Congress. ^
Some recommendations were not unanimous. The " r ^
on Personnel and Civil Service (concerning propos" j
tightening up the Administrative Procedures Act), on ^
Resources and Power, and on Overseas Economic Ac ' j
were the only reports on which the dissents were v|9
*Thij committee i
cjted the work ol several talk forcei.
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