417.00/501

The Minister in Nicaragua (Lane) to the Secretary of State

No. 323

Sir: Referring to my despatch No. 293 of June 26, 1934, and previous correspondence concerning the awards of the Nicaraguan Claims Commission and suggestions as to the manner in which they should be met, I have the honor to report that, under the pertinent provisions of law now in effect (Article 4 of the Law of July 8, 1933, copies and translations of which were transmitted with my predecessor’s despatch No. 1369 of July 17, 193392), the life of the Commission expired on June 30, 1934.

Inasmuch as there were still a number of unadjudicated claims before the Commission at the expiration of its mandate, a bill was presented to Congress in late June for the purpose of extending the period of time during which it can consider claims until August 31, 1934, and the life of the Secretariat of the Commission to September 30, 1934. This bill is now before the Chamber of Deputies but action on it as well as on the proposed legislation to provide means for meeting the Commission’s major awards has been delayed.93

The ostensible reason for the delay is that the Chamber has wished to devote its time exclusively to consideration of the budget for the 1934–1935 fiscal year which was presented to Congress on June 27. I am informed reliably, however, that the real cause is a desire to await the return from New York of Mr. Hans Sitarz, Manager of the National Bank of Nicaragua, with word of the reaction of the Board of Directors of the Bank to the suggestion that it loan the Nicaraguan Government C$600,000.00 for use in cash settlement of the claims.

The Claims Commission is still functioning informally but it is obviously in an anomalous position and apparently has for the moment no legal status.

Respectfully yours,

Arthur Bliss Lane
  1. Not printed.
  2. The bill extending the life of the Commission to August 31, 1934, and its Secretariat to September 30, 1934, was signed by the President July 17, 1934, and published in La Gaceta-Diario Oficial, July 20, 1934, p. 1289.