AIDS MOVE TO KEEP SAMPSON AS NAVY BASE
Additional Senate support for the proposal to retain Sampson Naval Training Center on its present basis has been assured with announcement to the effect that Senator David L. Walsh, (D) Mass., chairman of the powerful Senate Naval Affairs Committee, had indicated his approval of the move to keep the Center open as a naval training station.
In a statement released in Washington yesterday by Senator James Mead of Buffalo, Senator Walsh is quoted as saying:
"I am happy to give my full and unqualified support to Jim Mead's request for the retention of Sampson, and with him I feel strongly that there is a definite need for the continuance of the center."
Walsh's pledge followed action by Naval Secretary Forrestal in which he said the Senate appropriations committee would be asked to restore the funds eliminated by the House.
Meanwhile the fate of Sampson was discussed yesterday by a Senate subcommittee, but decision was reserved. Consideration of Sampson came up in closed hearings on the House bill scuttling Sampson by the Senate appropriations committee's Navy Department subcommittee.
After the first session of the hearing, the office of the subcommittee chairman, John H. Overton of Louisiana, declared no decision on Sampson will be made until the bill is "marked up" for introduction into the Senate, probably sometime next week.
Rep. John Taber, Auburn Republican, in whose district Sampson lies, said the Navy Department would have to prove to him that it would make full utilization of the station if he is to support Navy retention.
"The members of the House subcommittee which acted on Sampson told me the Navy originally planned to discontinue Sampson by November 1st," he said. "The House subcommittee merely advanced the day to September 30th, which shouldn't have made much difference.
"Whether it's closed September 30th or not, I'm interested in whether Sampson will be operated on a basis of 2,500 trainees, or whether it could be made more useful - such as taking care of 40,000 veterans needing hospitalization or domiciliary.
"With that in mind I suggested to Gen. Hines that he might be interested in it for the Veterans Administration. I understand he has seen the Navy and has asked for Sampson.
"I'm very much interested in seeing the place used in the most efficient and serviceable way for the greatest number of people."