WASHINGTON -- President Roosevelt has approved plans calculated to take 2,000,000 persons off relief rolls throughout the country and put them to work on self sustaining basis, the White House revealed today.
This plan, will involve the expenditure of at least $400,000,000 of government funds.
"Digging In" for Winter
In high administration circles decision to take the millions off direct relief and put them in the wage earner class by Nov. 16 was described as a departure of relief work, and at the same time a "digging in" for the winter.
The first 2,000,000 men comprise those now on work relief provided by local relief administrations operating under the state and federal emergency relief administrations. These immediately will be placed on regular pay at the hourly rates for similar work. A 30 hour week is contemplated.
New Civil Works Board
The plan will be administered by a newly created civil works administration under direction of Harry L. Hopkins, emergency relief head, and funds will be drawn from the $3,300,000,000 allocation.
"Creation of the new agency," a White House statement said, "constitutes a fundamental change in the federal program to deal with unemployment aspects of the depression. It will remove from the relief rolls a major portion of those receiving the necessities of life on the basis of public aid and place them on regular employment. It is designed to remove from relief rolls all employable persons. Those hired by the civil works administration will benefit by an immediate increase in income over their former relief allowances."
Range is Extended
It was explained that projects on of two the workers will be used will include not only the types on which relief work is now being given but also on a wide range of employment in activities bordering on but not covered in, the province of the public works administration.
"This expanded field." the statement said, "will enable the local civil works divisions to undertake considerably more construction and to use greater quantities of construction materials. Work relief has been limited almost entirely to work involving a minimum of materials, since expenditure of emergency relief funds under this method was necessarily confined to relief allowances in the form of work relief agencies."
PWA Funds Help Finance
The civil works administration will be financed jointly by funds from the public works, federal emergency relief, and states, cities, counties and towns will be required to meet their share of the program.
President Roosevelt believes that this bold stroke will mean that at least two thirds of the families in the country now on relief rolls will be placed on a self sustaining basis.
Approximately 3,000,000 families now are on relief rolls, and approximately 2.000,000 adult members of these families are earning relief in the form of wages on made work projects.
Farm Commodities Rise
At the same time it was revealed that since April, 1,500,000 families have been taken off relief rolls through a speeding up of industry. In September alone, 250,000 families were made self-sustaining.
In connection with the whole picture of the domestic economic situation, the White House also revealed that statistics for the week ending Oct. 25 showed a slight rise in the price of farm commodities with the exception of hides and leathers and a fractional drop in the cost of retail foods.
The administration believes that the placing of these millions of men in jobs will suffice until the expected spring upturn in business which generally begins around February.