Box 22, Folder 18, Document 7

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Box 22, Folder 18, Document 7

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Subcommittee on Exe2utive R~orga.~i z aticn o f the
Ser.ate Co~mittee on Government Operatio~s
Afternoon s ession :
De c ember
5) 1966
Witne ss:
Walter P. Reuther
Subj e ct:
Problems of the Citie s
Mr. Reuther was accompanied by Jack 'I'. Conway former Deputy Di1·ector
of the Housing and Ho;:;;e Fi nance Agency and OEO . Mr . Re utrse:::- c.e2..i ver2c:
h is statement on behalf of t he six ar..d one-half millicn industrial
workers re:presented by t h e I ndustrial Ur,io:1 Depart ment of the A.FL-CIO
and the millioYJ. and one -ha lf we:nbers of t he United Automobile , P.eros~13..2e
and Agricultural I :Ylp1,.ement Workers of P.neric a.
He advocated a weaving of all the el ements, h ousing, fu"lti - pollution
control and others , in co~oating urban blight . He s ai d that these
efforts must entail the n;ost participation possibl e by eve-:::yone
affected {3-:nd there must be a ma..xi mum coordir:.ation of effort . ·
He also said that t he problen:s of cit_ies are b eyond the e conor::ic c a:pf, ti es
of the loc a l gcvernr!lents . However, h e feels t hat the real drive and U"lr '
rr.ust come fr or.i the l ocal level .
!fir . Reuthe r proposed the creation of a I~ional Non:pro:;:i t
Coruorat.."!_.on consistin g of the be st :ni:1cs fro::i7.a"oo::i.· ,-,c"e } i!:o.ust ·,y,
education, etc . He prefers t ,1is nongovernme ntal type oi' cor~)o1·at i o0.
b ecause sucn ari organiza.ticn would r:.ot be entrenched i::i. t:ic bm·e:c..uc :::-2.'.:, ic
p atte rns which are to be found in the governr.1ent . He also -chi::i:~s t:1...1.,
thi s type of ation would not involve in- fighting i·:hici"l is
sometimes prevalent _in governr:1ent oi ga.n iz ation s . In h is o::_:iinion } a
private orga..."lization would b e much m-::ire :flexible .
Jl"u" . Reu'cher , in suggestinG tnat the taslt cf r etuilding t::.e city be
done by the tot al co~11!Lunity ) de sc-:::ited the Detroit i<etropolitan Ci ti :-t,ei~s '
De velopmcr,t Aut:iori ty , of wl1ic:1 r.e i s no',, chairr.'.lan . He said t r,j_s
Author:i.. ty j_s tryi ng to r 2bui2..d the city a ncl to qu2.lify Detroit a s a
D21r:onstration City. 'I~~ is Authority now h as t he .s.cti v 2 :participatio,. o:?
industry , :i:etail stores J churcr,es , c ivil r iG}lts groups 2.:.1c. r,.;21:. y othe::r::, .
He said the y are trying to c :r·eate a co~,11;uni ty :;iar"cnersni:p .
.t-1,r . Re uther describ e d the three kinds of r:,o:ney w:1ic:1 t he g ::Ol;:;? ,;ill 1..:se
to build hou sinJ as " seed mon e ; ,) developr.,ent rr.oney and r:--.orts2.::.;,2 u:c,.e~-' .
}Ie s aid that t De seed· tj'!OD·::!Y is nee Ce d t o the plans a:~d s· c
int erest in the progra~n J bt1.t \·,· ill not b e- r eturned to the dc~ors or t:~s
goverr:.r;;ent i f rr:ac.e thro~isn grants . In thi s rega r d, he se.5- d that unic.:1
p ens ion f ur1ds could p robably b e 'J.sed only for mortgage mor.ey b e cause
the funds are cont.rolled by :Beards w0ich ,~t" de c;ide ,-;het:--.. er t ;:.e inv e "'i:-::,2:--!t
of the r::ioney is se:cm· e . He s a id t hat see cl r::o!'.ley a.n.d d evelopr.'!e,1t mo:-,=--:;' ·.,c,, :2.c',
not "be a. pe:rr:-1i ss ible investr.1ent for t11ost pe!1sior: J:\1rAG.s .
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Oi:e fu_r1ction of the nonpro£'i t co:c-poration ; acco:cdine; to E:_·. Re1..i.:-her;
would be to a te and e:1cot.n-age t:-.e ouild:Lr:.s o:.': low i nco,.1e h cusi r.:;:;
by g ivin 6 technical assista n c e to builder.:; wbo would 0:9::::i·ccte fo::: a
profit. He · t~>iat t ::1e:·e wouid necessa1·il:,· be ex-.9e1·ts 2.v:1.ila-ole o:c
on call. He said that the key t o t he ·,,l-wle p:c-oblen; of ,r,:oviding lo,.;
i n c o:ne housing is to demonstr2.te the p ra".!t ic al c 2.:p3.bili ty 0£' sa.'-< :in~
public plmming compatible with :9r :!.sate plannine; a:1d builo.i::J.G ·
' .
Kr. Reuther s aid that h e is very e!1thl,siastic a':)out the Demcnstrat i ons
Ci t ie s Bill. .However ) he criticized Congr ess ' attitude to-.,·a rn ·ct Le
appro:;iriation o:;: n,oney for don;est i c programs . He thinks ti~a t these
prograo,s s hould be fu..rided a...½.ead of tic:2e ; so that the :Oe:92.rtrne:ot::; ,-,ill
k n ow what mone y is available and have the money in tb1e to pl a.., .
He thinks long term c ommi tt:n2nts should be mao.e for c.or,11:: sti c proc1·a::is
as ,,e l l as for mili t_ary progra:ns ar;d i'or,=i g n aid.
While c ri ticiz ine; pre s ent practices of 12nd use in cities ;
suggested that a l ar.d b2.nk should b e c reated to help l oc.3.l
p r ovi d e· l a,nd for low and r.1oderate inco,:.e housing . :-re s a id
could. l earn a lot from Great Eri tain . He also pointed. out
no slu~s in Swe e.e n .
1·~ Reuther
con:::,u::1i tie. 3
thc:t the U . S .
th~t t her e &:-·::;
Mr . Reutl:.e r · c ont ended t hat the only way to r ed1_;_ce the cost of ouj_lcling
hou ses is to appl y modern ; advar::ced t ec:hriolo~y 2.s i.t h e.s b een e.:ppl i ed
t o such .fields as space ex-plo::.·atio::1 . Ee believes t ::-,2.t a ho·.1s-:: uorth
$16 ; 000 according to present standards could b e developed. an-:: 3old ::·o:::
$8, 000 if i ndustry i s sccn-m how to do i t b y research ins'ciG2,tcd by t h e
gove r nment or a private :::i.on - profi t cor·::;ioratio;1 .
11.r . Reuther was h igi1ly c ritical of t he present s~rstems of r.~s s t~ ... ,,sus :r'c.?,:~j_c,:1
in this country. rie s ai d that t he _c ar i ndustry ':iill e ver; uffe:c fn:;:.1
self- s tra.'1gul at ion o n the high,-rays . Fie thinks it i s ri diculous for a
p erscn to c arry a ton and. a h a l f of rcetal with nir,1 to wcrli: everyds.y .
Ma in que stions r a i se d by Subcorm;ii ttee :
Fa1~t icii;>ati on by private inc1.11str:y in r ci .
l-1r . Ri b ::.coff 2.s~ed i-!D.lter Beuther whe:::. ratio \-:culo. b e de s i :rE..ble :o:cp art ici.p:i.tion by private indus t r y 2.:.1tl go\rey_~:.!e P-t i :r1 r ebuilf~inG 2i t i er, .
Mr . ~e replied that he t hcc:::;_lt the mi:-i. irau:1 ratio s h ould oo $1 o:::
gove:rr.i~G2nt mo!1e:>' for e--..rer:/ ·~5 of private fu.r. c~.s used . ·I 1his \·.:-a s the r 2.-:.i.0
p r oposed by Davi d Rockefeller.
Tee.chin;::; mi c r s.,, ts t o live in the c:i.ty .
The Cnairt,1EL'1 aske d w:io t eaches the farm p e o::;ile h ow to live i:1 c.itio s 21c.
how to e:void tur-ning hrn.l :::- ins into slu'.'1 ~2ss . He c laice d thi s i s o;t.:::::,
the gli ght of public housing in r.-.2.r!y cities . r-:r . Re uther :;aic. t nat t:--,::
w1fort-..1r).ate thi.Dg is th a"c most new city d,,•ellers leE..l'[", i'l'O",. tt:.e :;::,20::_:iL, ,. -:: .::Xnv·.-i tic l ec.. st. abou"~ l:r_;·.., to li\~8 ~n a . : . : ~~y . __. . :::. :.(~ "'.:11.::.J.:, : .::c·:22;.-- : :1:.:~ .-::)_·;~,
b e cr6aniz e d from the slutT!s to co ba c~ into the sJ.u~~s e.2:.d st':.O\·! -.9co~l.e >o-·:·
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to live £j_nd ta..~e ce.r-e of fu""'ld nei,.;:- housing.
Senator Ribicofi' seid t11at ~atc :r
i;1 vne he r~r ings
becomes a.
Se:nator RibiGoff a·skecl ho·w i s the govern:nent org.:Lu.ized to tc..~:e caJ."~ ot
the pro1)lems of urban -~~r.-1·2 ric 2.. . t·T . Co::P,-ts_:_y.. said t!-:at t !1.e so --1e!·1:r~er!.lc 1 s
r ead::r for a ne\; Eoover Cc:.1~·;1ission . }Ie t 11e :£'oll0'".-.ring su3ge st :=-.0:1::
Y(n.ich wo"'..lld in his opinio:1 str~::Gthen the go-,.:""e:!."'nt1ent ' e. l i t~.- to de cJ_
·with tl1e urba!:t crisis:
Group functions together as was done in t.he D:!fer1se :r2r, urt~n·:::rrt a~1.Q
Coordinate from above:: .
cutting of pro ::::rai:13 Con':! by the Burer·.u of the I,~d ge t .
would pl(lll &:c.d de·-;elop :;:>rogrc.:.1s f:c-0:1 •,·/ hi cl1 _t-ll·.-: i>::--c s!.d/:~n t cov.1. ,::
select the rcost useful . T.he a.dv~tr.\ced. I>lennj_ng futh~·t.ion of t ~:,~
execut:L-:1,~ br:~nch s hould :1ot. co6e u n d\-::j_... ~~he au o f th e 5-J d{: :·: ~~
bec it s}1ould be done o·J.t front nn1 n.\')t t e l1ii1d clc st.:d Cl.Oi..:i ~·s .
}'u.r1d a.'1ead so t hat. tl1e a,;encies vron 1 t have to b es for r::or~~\ Y 2s.c h

,rea.r .

Create a rnecha!;t ( su.c~1 a s a l oc2.l coordinat o2.. ) i.Ihicll -:: sx! .Jv.-::.~u::
all the tool=· avails.Ole and fit thern t O th2 !le eds o f ~.oc2.l.
corrll--nuni t i es J:" than --~:"ice v e:csa .
a genius at i.:.he loc a l 1 evel
federal pro grc~c.s .
how -c. o t ak e ad·..- ::. .:i.1 tn~_; ,-- of
R.ole of l abor i.n r e\ri sio!"l cf t:1e c:Lt~--- .
Ee :::.aicl t b..: .:.t eleven · \ cr:i s c..r c ~)2r tici~)2.ti:) .~~ . .:.::-::l
cre a .J(:. e Q a 2.::-id have do:·~e cu~:-i e.x citi nc; t l1in[;s e. s hoJ.O.i.n-~ .::! l sr_;:::-:·- 2
2uJ.d build i ng p l ayt; ::'ol:;.n ds .
Se nato:t Ke:--~11eCy wl;.:.o .·tas not present ask8d t h.~cu_-.30.. · -L~e Che.i 1·tt~2.n -..:~ ::;t:.};e; ~·
!1:r. F:-~ ut~er \-.1:1.s in favor of Co:·:~~rJ..;] :i.ty· DeveJ.o~:tn8nt Cor i:. or-2..tions c.t "Lt .~:
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l ocal level . ff:Y . said he is very much in fa,,-or of theL'l . :S:e ,:e..,ts
a N2:tional Corporation to work with the total probler.! and t o 02 bc:.c~ed
u p by local corpo2:·at io!1s .
National Nor.:profit Housing Corp orc.tion .
Senator Ri.oicoff said that the only person· he could think of ".,ho would
be capable of a ssemblins the r.ecess ary leve l of representation fror,
foun c.ations , u__--i.i versi ties , l abor , fin2.nce , ir::dustry and ot::ie:::- fields
to participate i:1 t he n2.tional c or pora .:.ion 1 would be t he Pre side nt .
The Senator said t!lat he h opes t he President will consider ti:-1is :_;;ropc s2.l .
Ho':-r to avoid continua tion of c. ,,.;e lfare sta te .
Consres s ma..11 J ames Scheuer ( D - N. Y . ) who was present at th:; h e ari ngs
asked Mr . Reuther hm; third genera tion. wel::'Etre famil ies 8Ld :9:.·ec.ictc.':)2..e
drop - outs c 8.J.'1 "be avoi ded . l/,r . Rc1.:the r said that tne recc:r:8 icns
made by tr..e ~ e s idec1t ' s Cow:1i. s s i er:. 0:1 .114cr..2.t i 5m s:1ould be i tr:_pl e,~,entcc,.
"'1 - e pror:-""""
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-o :..- :_··.~, ince n::c i ve s 1 sucn as e arning out. s i de mon e y . He t.!1.lD:~s tna t a re c i :,ne:Tc s:-,01:.:..d.

be allowe d to do this without loosin8 his welfare ::;:,ayment so tha t the
person will aspire to living on a hit:;her pla.ri.e . ·
l., !
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Mr . Re uther said thc.t a.ri.other wa y to avoid a welf are state 8..."ld put
people to work is to have a s t.,_nd2.rdi zed c o::-;:;,'J.t. e:::-' z ed e;n:::,7 o·-::::cr.,. n.:- ·
At p re sent 1 Mr . Re ut h e r clair:12d 1 ttie :.:"i 1· c,y e;1 c,rei:criect s--ca--:, 2 syste:,,s 2.·'.·-=
obstacles t o the setting up o f efficie r:.t c ctT::_:iut ers ,:hich c ould m2."' :.::-..
une,·a:;,loyed p e r son to a job withi n a r.:att er o -: r:,i nutes . i,'..r . R2u t h e r
s aid t hat the whole p e :!: son 1 his hobbi es a s we ll 2.s h i s ski lls , is n o".;
ta:~e n i nto account u..r1 the p r e s e nt S'.:. at e systecns .
Missin p; e l ement
in the s J.uc:-1s .
Conbressr.1an S~heuer asked what i s ti-!e missi;:r.t3 element that has no-r, ce .:::n
u sed to h e lp the cit y and ,-:heth e:..- this ele,:1e ::1t i s r.10:ce suLoidiz e c1 :10L,s :.:-.f/ '
Mr . Conwa y s a id ti1at on e r e a s on the gov e r nrr.8:1'-:, h as not h e l p e d · enou gh 5.:..
subsidi zing h ousing i s that in t he. o e:;i.nnin c; EBJ,'A was a f i n2.11e:ial i r.·.~-:'..r.,.'.:.
macle avai l abl e fo r p riv at e i r.dust,:y . He said that the A;;,e,~cy '.-ia s n ot :;,0oj:::. ,
o r i ented.
Change in Witness s che dule :
An t hony De cha".lt , Presid ent , ::-Io.t icna.J_ Fc.rrr.e:r:s lin ic::-i '., i l l not t e stify c ::-.
Tuesday Deceuber 6 . D~-. ;-/ill iac!l Dcebele , Gre.c:.u 2.te School of D:::sie;n ,
Harvard Un i versi t y w2.s shLfted f r o:n \·lcdr:esda y t o 'I \ .:.esd.8.:f L:,s-'.:.e.s.d .
I,Ie l vin Thom1 Ne.ti o I ndian Youth Council n B.s been 2.dcle d. ·co tbe li s t fo:::Monci.ay , December 12 .
M<::r:i'.)e rs pre sent:
Senator Ribie:off
Coc~ressr:!a..'1 J ames H. Scheuer ,
( D-:'TY )

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