Federal Security Agency

The Federal Security Agency (FSA) was an independent agency of the United States government established in 1939 pursuant to the "Reorganization Act of 1939" (P.L. 19, 76th Cong., 1st sess.). For a time, the agency administered the Social Security old-age pension plan, oversaw food and drug safety, administered public health programs, and federal education funding.

The Reorganization Act of 1939 authorized the president of the United States to devise a plan to reorganize the executive branch of government. Pursuant to the Act, President Franklin D. Roosevelt issued "Reorganization Plan No. 1 of 1939" on April 25, 1939. The reorganization plan was designed to reduce the number of agencies reporting directly to the president.

The reorganization plan created the cabinet-level Federal Security Agency. Included in the FSA was the Social Security Board, the U.S. Public Health Service, Food and Drug Administration, the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Office of Education (later the United States Department of Education), the National Youth Administration and a number of other agencies. Its first director was Paul V. McNutt. Secretly, the FSA was also a cover agency from 1942 to 1944 for the War Research Service, a secret program to develop chemical and biological weapons.

President Harry S. Truman attempted to make the FSA a department of the federal government, but this legislation was defeated.

In 1949, the United States Congress enacted the "Reorganization Act of 1949" (5 U.S.C. 901). Subsequently, President Dwight D. Eisenhower promulgated "Reorganization Plan No. 1 of 1953." The Federal Security Agency was abolished and most of its functions transferred to the newly formed United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW).

Famous quotes containing the words federal, security and/or agency:

    Prestige is the shadow of money and power. Where these are, there it is. Like the national market for soap or automobiles and the enlarged arena of federal power, the national cash-in area for prestige has grown, slowly being consolidated into a truly national system.
    C. Wright Mills (1916–1962)

    The horror of class stratification, racism, and prejudice is that some people begin to believe that the security of their families and communities depends on the oppression of others, that for some to have good lives there must be others whose lives are truncated and brutal.
    Dorothy Allison (b. 1949)

    It is possible that the telephone has been responsible for more business inefficiency than any other agency except laudanum.... In the old days when you wanted to get in touch with a man you wrote a note, sprinkled it with sand, and gave it to a man on horseback. It probably was delivered within half an hour, depending on how big a lunch the horse had had. But in these busy days of rush-rush-rush, it is sometimes a week before you can catch your man on the telephone.
    Robert Benchley (1889–1945)