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and I saw little value in calling a reporter in and saying I was going to have him in jail unless he "fessed up" to something.
The CHAIRMAN. In conclusion I want to say this and we won't take it up further now, I remember before one of our committee sessions here in the past that we had an attorney before our committee and he was questioned quite thoroughly on the fact that he had the free run of an agency, and I am sure it was your agency.
Mr. Burch. I wouldn't be surprised.
The CHAIRMAN. We thought it was improper, but we will get into that later. But if this is true, we are going to have to do something about it by law, probably.
Do you gentlemen have any questions?
Mr. BURCH. When you say “do something about it by law,” do you mean the fact of having monitored this telephone call!
The CHAIRMAN. No, I am talking about gentlemen with free access to offices and so forth.
Mr. BURCH. I wish you a great deal of luck. I have tried my hand at it and I don't know how to get a handle on it, particularly in an office where they're required to come to pay fees, get information and consult with people. I frankly just don't know.
The CHAIRMAN. Will you step into the outer office and wait a moment or two?
Mr. BURCH. Yes, sir, thank you. The CHAIRMAN. We will go off the record. (A discussion was held off the record.) The CHAIRMAN. Let the record show that the committee, with only three members present, has decided that the committee will adjourn and will hold a subsequent meeting with the full committee here and decide what the final decision will be.
The committee is adjourned subject to call of the Chair.
(Whereupon, at 2:30 p.m. the subcommittee adjourned, subject to call of the Chair.)
FCC MONITORING OF EMPLOYEES' TELEPHONES
TUESDAY, MAY 16, 1972
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
SUBCOMMITTEE ON INVESTIGATIONS,
Washington, D.C. The subcommittee met at 10 a.m., pursuant to notice, in room 2123 Rayburn Office Building, Representative Harley O. Staggers, chairman, presiding.
Present: Representatives Staggers, Pickle, Springer, and Shoup.
Staff present: Daniel Manelli, counsel; Albert McGrath, and Mark Raabe.
The CHAIRMAN. The committee will come to order.
Some weeks ago, information came to the attention of the subcommittee that the Federal Communications Commission had tapped some of its employees' telephones during a period of several weeks in 1970. Because of the obvious seriousness of this allegation, the subcommittee met with Chairman Burch on March 28, 1972. This 30-minute meeting was held in executive session in view of the possibility that privileged information might be involved. The time available did not permit a full inquiry into all of the issues.
In his statement to the subcommittee, Chairman Burch did confirm that certain employee telephones at the FCC were, in fact, secretly monitored during February and March 1970. This was done in connection with an investigation into a suspected leak of FCC agenda items.
The subcommittee has determined that it will need testimony from other FCC officials having knowledge of this incident, and additional testimony from Chairman Burch. It has been ascertained that privileged information is not involved. Therefore, this further proceeding is being conducted in open session.
The oversight jurisdiction of the Commerce Committee, and of this subcommittee, over the operations and policies of the FCC is clear. Under the Rules of the House of Representatives, we are charged with the responsibility of exercising a continuing review over the activities of the regulatory agencies within our jurisdiction. These requirements are contained in clauses 12 and 28 of Rule XI of the House of Representatives, and House Resolution 170 of the 92d Congress. Unless there is an objection, I will direct that pertinent portions of these regulations be inserted into the record at this point so that the jurisdictional basis for this hearing will be clear. The witnesses here this
morning have been provided with printed copies of these materials and I invite their careful attention to them.
(The documents referred to follow :)
SELECTED PROVISIONS OF THE RULES OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES APPLICABLE
TO SUBCOMMITTEE ACTIVITIES
RULE XI. POWERS AND DUTIES OF COMMITTEES All proposed legislation, messages, petitions, memorials, and other matters relating to the subject listed under the standing committees named below shall be referred to such committees respectively :
12. Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce.
(d) Interstate oil compacts and petroleum and natural gas, except on the public lands.
(e) Public health and quarantine.
(f) Railroad labor and railroad retirement and unemployment, except revenue measures relating thereto.
(g) Regulation of interstate and foreign communications.
(h) Regulation of interstate and foreign transportation, except transportation by water not subject to the jurisdiction of the Interstate Commerce Commission.
(i) Regulation of interstate transmission of power, except the installation of connections between Government water-power projects.
(j) Securities and exchanges. (k) Weather Bureau.
28. (a) In order to assist the House in
(1) its analysis, appraisal, and evaluation of the application, administration, and execution of the laws enacted by the Congress, and
(2) its formulation, consideration, and enactment of such modifications of or changes in those laws, and of such additional legislation, as may be neces
sary or appropriate, each standing committee shall review and study, on a continuing basis, the application, administration, and execution of those laws, or parts of laws, the subject matter of which is within the jurisdiction of that committee.
(b) Each standing committee shall submit to the House, not later than January 2 of each odd-numbered year beginning on or after January 1, 1973, a report on the activities of that committee under this clause during the Congress ending at noon on January 3 of such year.
(c) The preceding provisions of this clause do not apply to the Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on House Administration, the Committee on Rules, and the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct.
(d) Each standing committee of the House shall, in its consideration of all bills and joint resolutions of a public character within its jurisdiction, endeavor to insure that
(1) all continuing programs of the Federal Government, and of the government of the District of Columbia, within the jurisdiction of that committee, are designed ; and
(2) all continuing activities of Government agencies, within the jurisdiction of that committee, are carried on; so that, to the extent consistent with the nature, requirements, and objectives of those programs and activities, appropriations therefor will be made annually. For the purposes of this paragraph, a Government agency includes the organizational units of government listed in paragraph (d) of clause 7 of rule XIII.
(e) Each standing committee of the House shall review, from time to time, each continuing program within its jurisdiction for which appropriations are not made annually in order to ascertain whether such program could be modified so that appropriations therefor would be made annually.
[H. Res., 170, 92d Cong., 1st Sess.]
RESOLUTION Resolved, That, effective January 3, 1971, the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, acting as a whole or by subcommittee, is authorized to conduct full and complete studies and investigations and make inquiries within its jurisdiction as set forth in clause 12 of rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives. However, the committee shall not undertake any investigation of any subject which is being investigated for the same purpose by any other committee of the House.
SEC. 2. (a) For the purpose of making such investigations and studies, the committee or any subcommittee thereof is authorized to sit and act, subject to clause 31 of rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, during the present Congress at such times and places within or without the United States, whether the House is meeting, has recessed, or has adjourned, and to hold such hearings and require, by subpena or otherwise, the attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the production of such books, records, correspondence, memorandums, papers, and documents, as it deems necessary. Subpenas may be issued over the signature of the chairman of the committee or any member designated by him and may be served by any person designated by such chairman or member. The chairman of the committee, or any member designated by him, may administer oaths to any witness.
(b) Pursuant to clause 28 of rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the committee shall submit to the House, not later than January 2, 1973, a report on the activities of that committee during the Congress ending at noon on January 3, 1973.
Sec. 3. (a) Funds authorized are for expenses incurred in the committee's activities within the United States; however, local currencies owned by the United States shall be made available to the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce of the House of Representatives and employees engaged in carrying out their official duties for the purposes of carrying out the committee's authority, as set forth in this resolution, to travel outside the United States. In addition to any other condition that may be applicable with respect to the use of local currencies owned by the United States by members and employees of the committee, the following conditions shall apply with respect to their use of such currencies.
(1) No member or employee of such committee shall receive or expend local currencies for subsistence in any country at a rate in excess of the maximum per diem rate set forth in section 502(b) of the Mutual Security Act of 1954 (22 U.S.C. 1754).
(2) No member or employee of such committee shall receive or expend an amount of local currencies for transportation in excess of actual transportation costs.
(3) No appropriated funds shall be expended for the purpose of defraying expenses of members of such committee or its employees in any country where local currencies are available for this purpose.
(4) Each member or employee of such committee shall make to the chairman of such committee an itemized report showing the number of days visited in each country whose local currencies were spent, the amount of per diem furnished, and the cost of transportation if furnished by public carrier, or if such transportation is furnished by an agency of the United States Government, the cost of such transportation, and the identification of the agency. All such individual reports shall be filed by the chairman with the
Committee on House Administration and shall be open to public inspection. (b) Amounts of per diem shall not be furnished for a period of time in any country if per diem has been furnished for the same period of time in any other country, irrespective of differences in time zones.
The CHAIRMAN. The Communications Commission was created by Congress to insure the free flow and exchange of ideas and information. Nothing can impede that free flow more than the threat that telephone calls are being secretly monitored without the legal safeguards which are provided by the law. The FCC, more than any other