Fridley page 61

[no source, March 24, 1941]

Contends Contract Govt. Made Landowners Is Binding and Courts Will Sustain Amounts
Payment in Leave to Take Action Is Sometimes Deferred 20 Years or More, Congressman States

            WASHINGTON, March 24.—Representative Clarence Cannon of Missouri said today that he is making every effort to compel the War Department to pay the full option price for land in the TNT site at Weldon Spring.
            “The Government entered into a contract to pay those prices,” Cannon said, and that contract is binding, just as it would be with a private individual.”
            Cannon, who represents the district in which the site is situated has arranged to appear tomorrow before the House Military Affairs Committee to protest against the action of the War Department in abrogating the contract entered into with R. Newton McDowell, Kansas City contractor, to acquire the site on a 5 per cent commission basis. The contract, together with the options called for under it, was set aside after special appraisers for the War Department reported that McDowell’s option prices were far too high.
            “I am not interested in Mr. McDowell,” Cannon said. “I didn’t approve of the method of obtaining the site. I thought it was terrible that they should pay a commission on that basis and that they should go 300 mile to the other side of the State to find an abstractor.
            “But the War Department can’t clear itself for its neglect and inefficiency by penalizing these farmers who are my constituents. They can’t take it out on men who accepted in good faith the prices offered to them.
            “I am confident the courts will sustain the option prices. But here is the most unfortunate phase of that. The War Department has made it clear that in such instances payment above the amount allowed by the department in leave to take action, is sometimes deferred 30 years or more.
            “It isn’t right to make these farm- [one or more lines missing]