Public Papers of Richard Nixon, 1972

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Author: Richard M. Nixon  | Date: December 11, 1972

424
Statement Announcing Freeze on Hirings and Promotions in the Executive Branch.
December 11, 1972

I HAVE repeatedly made clear that it is my firm intention to hold down unnecessary Federal spending so that our people can be spared the higher prices and/or higher taxes that such spending inevitably generates. No Federal programs, no matter how attractive they may be individually, can have a higher priority than the protection of the purchasing power of all the people.

The budget I will send to the Congress in January will constitute a plan for keeping Federal spending under effective control, while providing responsible appropriations for all worthy programs.

We cannot wait until January, however, to begin action on one vital part of that plan: There is an urgent need for us to act now to keep the Federal bureaucracy from becoming too large, and thus too expensive, too unwieldy, and too unresponsive. Accordingly:
—I am today imposing a freeze on all new civilian hirings and on all civilian and military promotions by executive branch agencies.
—This freeze is effective at once and will remain in effect until the new budget is transmitted to the Congress in January.
—When the budget is transmitted, the freeze will be relaxed, but only to the extent permitted by the revised spending goals for fiscal year 1973 as set forth in the budget.

Exceptions to the freeze order will only be permitted in cases where the actions are essential to preserve human life and safety, to protect property, to preserve the continuity of government, or for emergency situations—such as the need for the Postal Service to hire temporary help to meet the Christmas mail rush. All exceptions will have to be approved on a case-by-case basis by the Office of Management and Budget.

I do not expect this freeze to interfere in any way with plans for revitalizing the Federal Government. It will also have no effect on employees’ eligibility for step increases, or on the scheduled comparability pay raise for Federal employees at the turn of the year.

My aim is to prevent unnecessary and wasteful growth of the Federal budget. Otherwise, we shall spurn the best chance we have had in more than 20 years to achieve prosperity without war and without inflation. I will not miss this opportunity.

NOTE: On the same day, the White House released a transcript of remarks by Secretary of the Treasury George P. Shultz announcing decisions reached by the President on economic stabilization and Federal spending. After his opening statement, Secretary Shultz and Caspar W. Weinberger, Director, Office of Managementand Budget, answered questions for reporters. The question-and-answer session was included in the White House press release. Secretary Shultz’s remarks are printed in the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents (vol. 8, p. 1752).

The text of a letter from Director Weinberger to the heads of departments and agencies about the freeze on hirings and promotions in the executive branch was also released by the White House and is printed in the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents (vol. 8, p. 1753).

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Chicago: Richard M. Nixon, "424 Statement Announcing Freeze on Hirings and Promotions in the Executive Branch.," Public Papers of Richard Nixon, 1972 in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Richard Nixon, 1972 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1161 1154. Original Sources, accessed August 10, 2022, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4BAWZRSVNQY7SM1.

MLA: Nixon, Richard M. "424 Statement Announcing Freeze on Hirings and Promotions in the Executive Branch." Public Papers of Richard Nixon, 1972, in Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Richard Nixon, 1972 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1161, page 1154. Original Sources. 10 Aug. 2022. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4BAWZRSVNQY7SM1.

Harvard: Nixon, RM, '424 Statement Announcing Freeze on Hirings and Promotions in the Executive Branch.' in Public Papers of Richard Nixon, 1972. cited in , Federal Register Division. National Archives and Records Service, Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, Richard Nixon, 1972 (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1956-), P.1161, pp.1154. Original Sources, retrieved 10 August 2022, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=4BAWZRSVNQY7SM1.