A-60499, FEBRUARY 27, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 664

A-60499: Feb 27, 1935

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MANY OF THE WORKS ARE OF UNUSUALLY HIGH ARTISTIC MERIT AND THE PAINTINGS HAVE BEEN ASSEMBLED NOT ONLY TO SHOW THE HIGH QUALITY OF WORK DONE BUT TO REFLECT TO THE BEST POSSIBLE ADVANTAGE THE LIFE AND ACTIVITIES OF THE CAMPS. THE EXHIBITION IS DESIGNED NOT ONLY TO SECURE THE APPROVAL OF THE CRITICS. IT WILL BE NECESSARY FOR THIRTY SEVEN OF THE OILS TO BE FRAMED AND ONE HUNDRED THIRTY-EIGHT WATERCOLORS MATTED. IN VIEW OF THE FACT THE TIME IS SO SHORT IN WHICH TO PREPARE THE ABOVE- MENTIONED PICTURES FOR EXHIBIT. YOUR EARLY DECISION IS RESPECTFULLY REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THE EXPENSE IS CORRECTLY CHARGEABLE TO THE EMERGENCY CONSERVATION FUND. THE EXCEPTIONS TO THAT GENERAL RULE ARE CASES IN WHICH THE EXHIBIT IS PURSUANT TO A DUTY IMPOSED BY LAW UPON THE DEPARTMENT OR SERVICE TO DISSEMINATE USEFUL INFORMATION CONCERNING THE ACTIVITY TO WHICH THE EXHIBIT RELATES. 4 COMP.

A-60499, FEBRUARY 27, 1935, 14 COMP. GEN. 664

EMERGENCY CONSERVATION WORK - EXHIBITION OF PAINTINGS THE FUNDS APPROPRIATED FOR EMERGENCY CONSERVATION WORK MAY NOT BE USED FOR FRAMES, MATS, OR OTHER EXPENSES INCIDENT TO PUBLIC EXHIBITION OF PICTURES PAINTED BY MEMBERS OF THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE DIRECTOR, EMERGENCY CONSERVATION WORK, FEBRUARY 27, 1935:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF FEBRUARY 25, 1935, AS FOLLOWS:

THE FOYER OF THE NATIONAL MUSEUM, SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION, HAS BEEN RESERVED FOR AN EXHIBITION OF ART WORK BY ARTISTS ENROLLED IN THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS CAMPS, MARCH 1 TO MARCH 15, 1935, INCLUSIVE. COMPREHENSIVE COLLECTION OF OILS AND WATER COLORS HAS BEEN ASSEMBLED FOR THIS SHOW. MANY OF THE WORKS ARE OF UNUSUALLY HIGH ARTISTIC MERIT AND THE PAINTINGS HAVE BEEN ASSEMBLED NOT ONLY TO SHOW THE HIGH QUALITY OF WORK DONE BUT TO REFLECT TO THE BEST POSSIBLE ADVANTAGE THE LIFE AND ACTIVITIES OF THE CAMPS, THE SUBJECT, MATTER, INCLUDING EDUCATIONAL CLASSES, ROAD BUILDING, DITCH DIGGING, WORSHIP, BRIDGE BUILDING, FOREST-FIRE FIGHTING, RECREATION, AND THE LIKE. THE EXHIBITION IS DESIGNED NOT ONLY TO SECURE THE APPROVAL OF THE CRITICS, BUT THE WHOLE-HEARTED APPROVAL AND COMMENDATION OF THE LAY PUBLIC. NO ONE COULD SEE THIS WORK WITHOUT HAVING A PROFOUND RESPECT AND APPRECIATION OF THE WORK AND WORTH OF THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS CAMPS.

TO PROPERLY PRESENT THIS MATERIAL, IT WILL BE NECESSARY FOR THIRTY SEVEN OF THE OILS TO BE FRAMED AND ONE HUNDRED THIRTY-EIGHT WATERCOLORS MATTED, THE ESTIMATED COST OF WHICH WOULD AMOUNT TO APPROXIMATELY $300.00.

IN VIEW OF THE FACT THE TIME IS SO SHORT IN WHICH TO PREPARE THE ABOVE- MENTIONED PICTURES FOR EXHIBIT, YOUR EARLY DECISION IS RESPECTFULLY REQUESTED AS TO WHETHER THE EXPENSE IS CORRECTLY CHARGEABLE TO THE EMERGENCY CONSERVATION FUND.

IT HAS BEEN HELD GENERALLY THAT APPROPRIATED FUNDS MAY NOT BE USED FOR EXHIBITS WITHOUT EXPRESS STATUTORY AUTHORITY THEREFOR. 2 COMP. GEN. 581. THE EXCEPTIONS TO THAT GENERAL RULE ARE CASES IN WHICH THE EXHIBIT IS PURSUANT TO A DUTY IMPOSED BY LAW UPON THE DEPARTMENT OR SERVICE TO DISSEMINATE USEFUL INFORMATION CONCERNING THE ACTIVITY TO WHICH THE EXHIBIT RELATES. 4 COMP. GEN. 457; 7 ID. 357; 14 ID. 427.

THE ACT OF MARCH 31, 1933, 48 STAT. 22, AUTHORIZING EMERGENCY CONSERVATION WORK, DECLARES ITS PURPOSES AS FOLLOWS:

THAT FOR THE PURPOSE OF RELIEVING THE ACUTE CONDITION OF WIDESPREAD DISTRESS AND UNEMPLOYMENT NOW EXISTING IN THE UNITED STATES, AND IN ORDER TO PROVIDE FOR THE RESTORATION OF THE COUNTRY'S DEPLETED NATURAL RESOURCES AND THE ADVANCEMENT OF AN ORDERLY PROGRAM OF USEFUL PUBLIC WORKS, THE PRESIDENT IS AUTHORIZED, UNDER SUCH RULES AND REGULATIONS AS HE MAY PRESCRIBE AND BY UTILIZING SUCH EXISTING DEPARTMENTS OR AGENCIES AS HE MAY DESIGNATE, TO PROVIDE FOR EMPLOYING CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES WHO ARE UNEMPLOYED, IN THE CONSTRUCTION, MAINTENANCE, AND CARRYING ON OF WORKS OF A PUBLIC NATURE IN CONNECTION WITH THE FORESTATION OF LANDS BELONGING TO THE UNITED STATES OR TO THE SEVERAL STATES WHICH ARE SUITABLE FOR TIMBER PRODUCTION, THE PREVENTION OF FOREST FIRES, FLOODS AND SOIL EROSION, PLANT PEST AND DISEASE CONTROL, THE CONSTRUCTION, MAINTENANCE, OR REPAIR OF PATHS, TRAILS, AND FIRE LANES IN THE NATIONAL PARKS AND NATIONAL FORESTS, AND SUCH OTHER WORK ON THE PUBLIC DOMAIN, NATIONAL AND STATE, AND GOVERNMENT RESERVATIONS INCIDENTAL TO OR NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH ANY PROJECTS OF THE CHARACTER ENUMERATED, AS THE PRESIDENT MAY DETERMINE TO BE DESIRABLE: * * *.

IT IS ASSUMED THERE HAVE NOT BEEN EXPENDED MONEYS APPROPRIATED TO CARRY OUT THE FOREGOING STATUTE TO PAY MEMBERS OF THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS FOR DUTIES OTHER THAN ON WORK OF THE CHARACTER SPECIFICALLY MENTIONED IN AND AUTHORIZED BY SUCH STATUTE, BUT, HOWEVER THAT MAY BE, THERE APPEARS NOTHING IN THE LAW SUGGESTING THAT THE MAKING, ASSEMBLING, OR EXHIBITING OF WORKS OF ART--- PICTURES IN OILS AND WATER COLORS--- WAS CONTEMPLATED AND DECISION ON YOUR SUBMISSION MUST BE THAT THE APPROPRIATED MONEYS AVAILABLE FOR CARRYING OUT THE AFOREMENTIONED LAW MAY NOT LEGALLY BE EXPENDED FOR FRAMES, MATS, OR OTHER EXPENSES INCIDENT TO THE ART EXHIBITION MENTIONED.