B-4999, AUGUST 1, 1939, 19 COMP. GEN. 137

B-4999: Aug 1, 1939

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" ONLY A VERY SMALL PART OF WHICH CONFERENCE IS DEVOTED TO A STUDY OF THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS OR PRACTICES IN CANADA AS INCIDENTAL TO THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE CONFERENCE. IS NOT WITHIN THE PROHIBITION IN THE 1940 FISCAL YEAR BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS APPROPRIATION. " REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THE EMPLOYEES WHO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE DO OR DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE SESSION AT WHICH THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM IN CANADA WILL BE DISCUSSED. 1939: I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JULY 17. AS FOLLOWS: THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO AND YALE UNIVERSITY WITH THE COOPERATION OF THE CARNEGIE CORPORATION OF NEW YORK HAVE ORGANIZED A SEMINAR CONFERENCE TO STUDY THE PRESENT POSITION AND PROBLEMS OF THE INDIANS IN CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES.

B-4999, AUGUST 1, 1939, 19 COMP. GEN. 137

TRAVELING EXPENSES - INDIAN PROBLEM CONFERENCE - FOREIGN COUNTRY EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM STUDY PROHIBITION ATTENDANCE AT A CONFERENCE IN CANADA TO STUDY "THE PRESENT POSITION AND PROBLEMS OF THE INDIANS IN CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES," ONLY A VERY SMALL PART OF WHICH CONFERENCE IS DEVOTED TO A STUDY OF THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS OR PRACTICES IN CANADA AS INCIDENTAL TO THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE CONFERENCE, IS NOT WITHIN THE PROHIBITION IN THE 1940 FISCAL YEAR BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS APPROPRIATION, 53 STAT. 703, AGAINST THE USE OF SAID FUNDS "FOR EXPENSES OF TRAVEL FOR THE STUDY OF EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS OR PRACTICES OUTSIDE THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES AND THE TERRITORY OF ALASKA," REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THE EMPLOYEES WHO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE DO OR DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE SESSION AT WHICH THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM IN CANADA WILL BE DISCUSSED.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL BROWN TO THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR, AUGUST 1, 1939:

I HAVE YOUR LETTER OF JULY 17, 1939, AS FOLLOWS:

THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO AND YALE UNIVERSITY WITH THE COOPERATION OF THE CARNEGIE CORPORATION OF NEW YORK HAVE ORGANIZED A SEMINAR CONFERENCE TO STUDY THE PRESENT POSITION AND PROBLEMS OF THE INDIANS IN CANADA AND THE UNITED STATES. MEMBERSHIP IN THE SEMINAR WILL BE BY INVITATION AND IS LIMITED TO 75, AND WILL INCLUDE INDIAN ADMINISTRATORS, MISSIONARIES, ANTHROPOLOGISTS, AND OTHERS WITH FIRST HAND KNOWLEDGE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS IN CANADA OR THE UNITED STATES. IT IS HOPED THAT FROM THE FRANK DISCUSSIONS OF SUCH A GROUP IT WILL BE POSSIBLE TO FORMULATE WELL REASONED POLICIES WHICH WILL BE OF VALUE TO THE INDIANS AND THOSE WORKING AMONG THEM.

UNDER THE ACT MAKING APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1940, I HAVE AUTHORITY TO DETAIL EMPLOYEES OF THE INDIAN SERVICE TO ATTEND MEETINGS OF THIS TYPE. THIS PARTICULAR CONFERENCE, HOWEVER, WILL BE HELD AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO, ONTARIO, CANADA, AND IT IS THE PURPOSE OF THIS COMMUNICATION TO ASK WHETHER YOUR OFFICE WOULD INTERPRET AS APPLYING TO THIS CONFERENCE THE PROVISO CONTAINED IN THE APPROPRIATION ACT WHICH STIPULATES THAT "NO PART OF ANY APPROPRIATION IN THIS ACT FOR THE BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS SHALL BE AVAILABLE FOR EXPENSES OF TRAVEL FOR THE STUDY OF EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS OR PRACTICES OUTSIDE THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES AND THE TERRITORY OF ALASKA.'

THIS PROVISO WAS INSERTED ORIGINALLY IN THE INTERIOR APPROPRIATION ACT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1939, AND AROSE BECAUSE OF THE ANNOUNCEMENT BY THE PROGRESSIVE EDUCATION ASSOCIATION OF A SPECIAL TOUR OF MEXICO SCHOOLS FOR INDIAN SERVICE TEACHERS. (SEE HEARINGS BEFORE THE SUBCOMMITTEE OF THE COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS, U.S. SENATE, 75TH CONG., P. 245 AND FOLLOWING.)

THE SEMINAR CONFERENCE TO BE HELD AT TORONTO IS IN NO SENSE A STUDY OF THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS OR PRACTICES OUTSIDE THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES. IT IS PRIMARILY CONCERNED WITH HISTORY AND POLICIES OF INDIAN ADMINISTRATION, AND WITH ECONOMIC PROBLEMS. THERE IS, HOWEVER, TO BE PRESENTED DURING THE CONFERENCE A PAPER ON THE SUBJECT "1PROBLEMS OF INDIAN EDUCATION IN ADA.' THIS PAPER AND THE DISCUSSION WHICH FOLLOWS WILL CONSUME ABOUT ONE AND A HALF HOURS OUT OF THE TOTAL TWO WEEKS SESSION. IF IT IS CONSTRUED THAT ATTENDANCE AT THIS SESSION WOULD BE CONTRARY TO THE PROVISION CONTAINED IN THE APPROPRIATION ACT, I WILL BE GLAD TO DIRECT THAT MEMBERS OF THE INDIAN SERVICE ATTENDING THE CONFERENCE REFRAIN FROM PARTICIPATING IN THIS SESSION.

I SHOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHETHER YOUR OFFICE WOULD INTERPOSE ANY OBJECTION TO MY AUTHORIZING THE ATTENDANCE OF INDIAN SERVICE EMPLOYEES AT THIS CONFERENCE. THERE IS ATTACHED A GENERAL STATEMENT OF THE PURPOSE OF THE CONFERENCE AND A TENTATIVE PROGRAM.

IT IS ASSUMED THAT YOUR STATEMENT THAT YOU HAVE BEEN AUTHORIZED TO DETAIL EMPLOYEES TO SUCH MEETINGS IS BASED UPON THE FOLLOWING PROVISION IN THE INDIAN OFFICE APPROPRIATION FOR 1940 (ACT OF MAY 10, 1939, PUB. 68):

AUTHORIZATION FOR ATTENDING HEALTH AND EDUCATIONAL MEETINGS: NOT TO EXCEED $7,000 SHALL BE AVAILABLE FROM APPLICABLE FUNDS FOR EXPENSES (NOT MEMBERSHIP FEES) OF EMPLOYEES OF THE INDIAN SERVICE WHEN AUTHORIZED BY THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR TO ATTEND MEETINGS OF MEDICAL, HEALTH, EDUCATIONAL, AGRICULTURAL, FORESTRY, ENGINEERING, AND INDUSTRIAL ASSOCIATIONS IN THE INTEREST OF WORK AMONG THE INDIANS.

IT IS UNDERSTOOD FROM YOUR LETTER THAT ONLY A VERY SMALL PART, IF ANY, OF THE PROGRAM IS TO BE DEVOTED TO A STUDY OF THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEMS OR PRACTICES IN CANADA, AND THAT ANY SUCH STUDY IS ONLY INCIDENTAL TO THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE CONFERENCE. ACCORDINGLY, THERE APPEARS NO LEGAL OBJECTION TO THE USE OF THE ABOVE-MENTIONED APPROPRIATION FOR AUTHORIZED EXPENSES OF ATTENDANCE AT THE CONFERENCE REFERRED TO, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THE EMPLOYEES OF THE INDIAN SERVICE WHO ATTEND THE CONFERENCE DO OR DO NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE SESSION AT WHICH THE PAPER "1PROBLEMS OF INDIAN EDUCATION IN CANADA" WILL BE DISCUSSED.