A-13822, APRIL 15, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 824

A-13822: Apr 15, 1926

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

SHOULD BE EXPENDED DIRECTLY FOR THE PURPOSES FOR WHICH IT WAS MADE. MAY NOT BE TURNED OVER TO THE STATE IN WHICH THE RESERVATION IS LOCATED BY WAY OF REIMBURSEMENT OR OTHERWISE. 1926: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 2. OF THE TRIBAL FUNDS OF THE NAVAJO INDIANS IS AUTHORIZED TO BE WITHDRAWN FROM THE TREASURY FOR EXPENDITURE UNDER REGULATIONS TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR. PROVIDES: THAT THERE IS HEREBY AUTHORIZED TO BE APPROPRIATED ANNUALLY. IF NO FUNDS ARE AVAILABLE. UNDER WHICH THE ROAD UNDER CONSIDERATION IS BEING CONSTRUCTED. PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS: THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE IS AUTHORIZED TO COOPERATE WITH THE STATE HIGHWAY DEPARTMENTS. TO PAY THE AMOUNT ASSUMED THEREFOR FROM THE FUNDS ALLOTTED OR APPORTIONED UNDER THIS ACT TO THE STATE WHEREIN THE RESERVATION IS LOCATED.

A-13822, APRIL 15, 1926, 5 COMP. GEN. 824

APPROPRIATIONS - MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF A FEDERAL-AID HIGHWAY ON AN INDIAN RESERVATION THE APPROPRIATION MADE BY THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1925, 43 STAT. 1163, FOR THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF A FEDERAL-AID ROAD ON THE NAVAJO INDIAN RESERVATION, SHOULD BE EXPENDED DIRECTLY FOR THE PURPOSES FOR WHICH IT WAS MADE, UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR, AND MAY NOT BE TURNED OVER TO THE STATE IN WHICH THE RESERVATION IS LOCATED BY WAY OF REIMBURSEMENT OR OTHERWISE, THERE BEING NO PROVISION FOR COOPERATION BETWEEN THE STATE AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENTS IN THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF SUCH ROADS EITHER IN THE SAID APPROPRIATION ACT OR IN THE ACT OF JUNE 7, 1924, 43 STAT. 606.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR, APRIL 15, 1926:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 2, 1926, REQUESTING DECISION ON CERTAIN QUESTIONS PRESENTED BY THE COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS RELATIVE TO THE EXPENDITURE OF THE APPROPRIATION MADE FOR THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF A ROAD ON THE NAVAJO RESERVATION BY THE ACT OF MARCH 3, 1925, 43 STAT. 1163, PROVIDING AS FOLLOWS:

THE SUM OF $20,000, OR SO MUCH THEREOF AS MAY BE NECESSARY, OF THE TRIBAL FUNDS OF THE NAVAJO INDIANS IS AUTHORIZED TO BE WITHDRAWN FROM THE TREASURY FOR EXPENDITURE UNDER REGULATIONS TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR, FOR THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF THAT PORTION OF THE FEDERAL AID HIGHWAY FROM GALLUP, NEW MEXICO, TO SHIPROCK, NEW MEXICO, ACROSS THE NAVAJO INDIAN RESERVATION, IN CONFORMITY WITH THE ACT OF JUNE 7, 1924, (FORTY-THIRD STATUTES AT LARGE, PAGES 606 AND 607): PROVIDED, THAT INDIAN LABOR SHALL BE EMPLOYED AS FAR AS POSSIBLE.

THE ACT OF JUNE 7, 1924, REFERRED TO, PROVIDES:

THAT THERE IS HEREBY AUTHORIZED TO BE APPROPRIATED ANNUALLY, OUT OF ANY MONEY IN THE TREASURY NOT OTHERWISE APPROPRIATED, THE SUM OF $20,000 OR SO MUCH THEREOF AS MAY BE NECESSARY FOR EACH FISCAL YEAR, TO BE EXPENDED UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR FOR MAINTENANCE OF THAT PORTION OF THE FEDERAL AID HIGHWAY FROM GALLUP, NEW MEXICO, TO SHIPROCK, NEW MEXICO, ACROSS THE NAVAJO INDIAN RESERVATION, REIMBURSABLE FROM TRIBAL FUNDS OF THE INDIANS OF SAID RESERVATION: PROVIDED, THAT INDIAN LABOR SHALL BE EMPLOYED AS FAR AS PRACTICABLE: PROVIDED FURTHER, THAT, IF NO FUNDS ARE AVAILABLE, NO EXPENDITURE SHALL BE MADE.

SECTION 3 OF THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ACT OF NOVEMBER 9, 1921, 42 STAT. 212, UNDER WHICH THE ROAD UNDER CONSIDERATION IS BEING CONSTRUCTED, PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE IS AUTHORIZED TO COOPERATE WITH THE STATE HIGHWAY DEPARTMENTS, AND WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR IN THE CONSTRUCTION OF PUBLIC HIGHWAYS WITHIN INDIAN RESERVATIONS, AND TO PAY THE AMOUNT ASSUMED THEREFOR FROM THE FUNDS ALLOTTED OR APPORTIONED UNDER THIS ACT TO THE STATE WHEREIN THE RESERVATION IS LOCATED.

THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ACT ALSO PROVIDES THAT THE STATE OR STATES IN WHICH THE FEDERAL HIGHWAYS ARE LOCATED SHALL PROVIDE FOR THE UPKEEP, MAINTENANCE, AND REPAIRS OF THE SAME (SEE SECTIONS 7 AND 14 OF THE ACT), AND IT IS STATED IN THE LETTER OF THE COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS THAT THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO MAINTAINS THE ORGANIZATION, EQUIPMENT, AND PERSONNEL FOR THE PURPOSE.

IT IS IN CONNECTION WITH THE UPKEEP AND MAINTENANCE OF THAT PORTION OF THE ROAD CROSSING THE NAVAJO RESERVATION THAT THE APPROPRIATION OF $20,000 WAS MADE AND AS TO WHICH THE INDIAN OFFICE IS IN DOUBT AS TO THE CORRECT METHOD TO FOLLOW IN THE EXPENDITURE OF THE FUNDS. IT IS STATED THAT THE INDIAN SERVICE HAS NO ORGANIZATION OR EQUIPMENT TO PERFORM THE ROAD MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR WORK, AND THERE ARE SUBMITTED FIVE QUESTIONS, STATED AS FOLLOWS:

(1) WILL IT BE NECESSARY FOR THIS SERVICE TO EXPEND THE MONEY DIRECTLY FOR THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF THE ROAD BY PURCHASING THE REQUISITE EQUIPMENT, MATERIAL, AND SUPPLIES AND EMPLOYING LABOR FOR THE WORK?

(2) CAN THIS SERVICE PURCHASE THE NECESSARY MATERIAL AND DO THE WORK BY USING THE STATE'S EQUIPMENT AND PERSONNEL, TAKING THE LATTER UP ON THE SUPERINTENDENT'S PAYROLL FOR THE REQUISITE TIME AS TEMPORARY IRREGULAR LABOR EMPLOYED BY THE INDIAN SERVICE FOR THE PURPOSE?

(3) CAN THE STATE DO THE WORK AND BE REIMBURSED THEREFOR TO THE EXTENT OF THE $20,000 APPROPRIATION UPON SATISFACTORY EVIDENCE THAT THE MONEY HAS BEEN SPENT THE MAINTENANCE OF THAT PART OF THE ROAD ON THE RESERVATION?

(4) MAY THIS SERVICE MAKE A FORMAL CONTRACT WITH THE STATE HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT TO MAINTAIN AND REPAIR A SPECIFIC DESIGNATED MILEAGE OF THE ROAD ON THE RESERVATION IN CONSIDERATION OF THE PAYMENT TO THE STATE BY THE GOVERNMENT OF THE $20,000 APPROPRIATION?

(5) CAN THIS SERVICE EXPEND THE ENTIRE AMOUNT OF THE APPROPRIATION IN THE PURCHASE OF MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR MATERIAL AND TURN SAME OVER TO THE STATE FOR USE BY IT ON THE ROAD WITHIN THE RESERVATION?

UNDER THE TERMS OF SECTION 3 OF THE FEDERAL HIGHWAY ACT, SUPRA, THE COOPERATION OF THE THREE AGENCIES REFERRED TO THEREIN IN CONNECTION WITH THE HIGHWAYS TO BE CONSTRUCTED WITHIN INDIAN RESERVATIONS DEALS WITH THE CONSTRUCTION WORK ONLY AND NOT WITH MAINTENANCE AND UPKEEP OF THE ROADS, AND THE ACTS OF JUNE 7, 1924, AND MARCH 3, 1925, DO NOT ENLARGE THE COOPERATIVE AUTHORIZATION OF THAT SECTION. THE TERMS OF THE ACT OF JUNE 7, 1924, SUPRA, ARE SPECIFIC IN PROVIDING THAT THE AMOUNTS TO BE APPROPRIATED IN PURSUANCE TO ITS PROVISIONS WERE TO BE EXPENDED UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR FOR MAINTENANCE OF THE ROAD IN QUESTION AND THE APPROPRIATION ACT PROVIDES THAT THE MONEY APPROPRIATED SHALL BE AVAILABLE FOR EXPENDITURE UNDER REGULATIONS TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR FOR THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF THE ROAD.

THE AUTHORIZATION ACT OF JUNE 7, 1924, AND THE APPROPRIATION ACT OF MARCH 3, 1925, EACH PROVIDES THAT INDIAN LABOR SHALL BE EMPLOYED IN SO FAR AS PRACTICABLE FOR THE DOING OF THE WORK AND BY THE METHODS SUGGESTED UNDER (2), (3), (4), AND (5) OF THE LETTER OF THE COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS IT IS NOT APPARENT HOW THIS REQUIREMENT CAN BE ADEQUATELY COMPLIED WITH, SINCE IT IS ASSUMED THE PERSONNEL OF THE STATE HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT DOES NOT COMPRISE MANY INDIAN LABORERS.

THERE IS NOT BROUGHT OUT IN THE SUBMISSION ANYTHING WITH REFERENCE TO THE ECONOMICAL ADVANTAGES OF ANY OF THE METHODS SUGGESTED IN SO FAR AS THE INTERESTS OF THE INDIANS ARE CONCERNED, NOR DOES IT APPEAR WHAT REGULATIONS THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR HAS PRESCRIBED OR CONTEMPLATES PRESCRIBING RELATIVE TO THE MATTER.

THE UNDERTAKING BY THE INDIAN SERVICE TO PERFORM THE NECESSARY WORK IN CONNECTION WITH THE MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR OF THE ROAD BY PURCHASING THE REQUIRED EQUIPMENT, MATERIAL, AND SUPPLIES AND EMPLOYING THE NECESSARY LABOR THEREFOR WOULD ENABLE THAT SERVICE TO CARRY OUT STRICTLY THE PROVISIONS OF THE APPROPRIATION ACT, ESPECIALLY IN CONNECTION WITH THE EMPLOYMENT OF INDIAN LABOR AND AT THE SAME TIME SUCH PROCEDURE WOULD COMPLY WITH THE TRUE INTENT OF THE ACTS REFERRED TO ABOVE. HOWEVER, IF IT SHOULD BE FOUND TO BE IN THE INTEREST OF ECONOMY AND EFFICIENCY TO ARRANGE WITH THE STATE FOR THE USE OF ITS EQUIPMENT ON A LOAN OR RENTAL BASIS, AND TO EMPLOY TEMPORARILY SUCH SKILLED OR TRAINED MEMBERS OF THE STATE'S ORGANIZATION AS MAY BE FOUND NECESSARY TO PERFORM WORK WHICH CAN NOT BE PERFORMED BY INDIANS, THERE WOULD APPEAR TO BE NO LEGAL OBJECTION THERETO.