Public Works and National Recovery

July 18, 1933

Report Outline
Roosevelt and the Public Works Recovery Program
National Three Billion Dollar Public Works Plan
Public Works as a Means of Relief and Revival
Recent Public Works Expenditures and Proposals
Special Focus

Roosevelt and the Public Works Recovery Program

Appointment of ten regional administrators to set in full motion the machinery for selecting state and municipal projects to share in the large public works fund appropriated by Congress at its last session is expected to be made shortly. Meanwhile, allocations of the fund have already been approved for strictly federal projects which will give employment in every state and in Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The Public Works Administration is endeavoring to expedite application of the program with the objective of fulfilling the promise of prompt action given by President Roosevelt when he signed the National Recovery Act on June 16. The President said then that “we should be able to hire many men at once and to step up to about a million new jobs by October 1, and a much greater number later.”

Reports that recent improvements in business activity and commodity prices might influence the administration to retard execution of the public works program, in the expectation that large expenditures of this nature would no longer be necessary, were denied by the President on July 14. He announced that the entire appropriation of $3,300,000,000 would be expended. This decision conformed with repeated declarations by administration officials that consumers' purchasing power must be enlarged to maintain the higher price levels and increased industrial production recently recorded. It was in line with the National Recovery Administration's pleas for prompt submission of industrial codes of fair competition and its consideration of plans for immediate application of a blanket code to raise wages and spread employment generally, pending final approval of the codes of individual industries.

Qualifications Required for Approval of Projects

The Public Works Administration has indicated that in deciding upon projects to be financed under the act it will give priority to those undertakings which are ready to be started at once. At the same time, full attention is being given to President Roosevelt's warning, expressed in the statement of June 16, that “we should not pour money into unproved projects.” Plans for which approval is now being sought are required to meet three primary qualifications: (1) Immediate availability to create large employment; (2) completion without further financial aid; and (3) permanent social benefit to the community or nation. Secretary of the Interior Ickes, head of the Public Works Administration, outlined this policy as follows on July 10:

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
New Deal, Great Depression, and Economic Recovery
Feb. 20, 2009  Public-Works Projects
Jul. 25, 1986  New Deal for the Family
Apr. 04, 1973  Future of Social Programs
Nov. 18, 1944  Postwar Public Works
Apr. 12, 1941  Public Works in the Post-Emergency Period
Mar. 08, 1940  Integration of Utility Systems
Feb. 26, 1938  The Permanent Problem of Relief
Jun. 08, 1937  Experiments in Price Control
Jan. 05, 1937  Credit Policy and Control of Recovery
Nov. 27, 1936  New Deal Aims and the Constitution
Oct. 16, 1936  Father Coughlin vs. the Federal Reserve System
Sep. 25, 1936  Roosevelt Policies in Practice
Feb. 11, 1936  Conditional Grants to the States
Dec. 11, 1935  Capital Goods Industries and Recovery
Sep. 25, 1935  Unemployment Relief Under Roosevelt
Jul. 17, 1935  The R.F.C. Under Hoover and Roosevelt
Jul. 03, 1935  Six Months of the Second New Deal Congress
Jun. 04, 1935  The Supreme Court and the New Deal
Mar. 05, 1935  Public Works and Work Relief
Feb. 16, 1935  Organized Labor and the New Deal
Dec. 04, 1934  Rural Electrification and Power Rates
Oct. 26, 1934  Federal Relief Programs and Policies
Jul. 25, 1934  Distribution of Federal Emergency Expenditures
Jul. 17, 1934  Debt, Credit, and Recovery
May 25, 1934  The New Deal in the Courts
Mar. 27, 1934  Construction and Economic Recovery
Mar. 19, 1934  Price Controls Under N.R.A.
Feb. 15, 1934  Federal Promotion of State Unemployment Insurance
Jan. 10, 1934  Government and Business After the Depression
Jan. 02, 1934  The Adjustment of Municipal Debts
Dec. 12, 1933  The Machine and the Recovery Program
Dec. 05, 1933  Winter Relief, 1933–1934
Nov. 11, 1933  Power Policies of the Roosevelt Administration
Oct. 28, 1933  Buying Power under the Recovery Program
Oct. 19, 1933  Land Settlement for the Unemployed
Sep. 20, 1933  The Capital Market and the Securities Act
Jul. 18, 1933  Public Works and National Recovery
Jul. 01, 1933  The Plan for National Industrial Control
May 03, 1933  Economic Readjustments Essential to Prosperity
Apr. 26, 1933  Government Subsidies to Private Industry
Mar. 25, 1933  Rehabilitation of the Unemployed
Feb. 17, 1933  Federal Cooperation in Unemployment Relief
Nov. 16, 1932  Systems of Unemployment Compensation
Nov. 09, 1932  Policies of the New Administration
Aug. 18, 1932  Emergency Relief Construction and Self-Liquidating Projects
Dec. 28, 1931  Relief of Unemployment
Aug. 01, 1931  National Economic Planning
Jul. 20, 1931  Dividends and Wages in Periods of Depression
Feb. 19, 1931  Insurance Against Unemployment
Jan. 19, 1931  Business Failures and Bankruptcy Administration
Jan. 01, 1931  Federal Subsidies to the States
Dec. 08, 1930  Federal Relief of Economic Distress
Sep. 25, 1930  The Extent of Unemployment
May 16, 1930  Politics and Depressions
Dec. 20, 1929  The Federal Public Works Program
Jun. 08, 1929  The Federal Reserve System and Stock Speculation
Apr. 14, 1928  The Federal Reserve System and Price Stabilization
Feb. 25, 1928  The Federal Reserve System and Brokers' Loans
Economic Crises
Economic Development