811.504/984: Telegram

The Ambassador in Mexico ( Messersmith ) to the Secretary of State

21. Our Farm Security people engaged in recruiting agricultural laborers82 are somewhat embarrassed by the fact that about 5000 laborers are applying for the approximately 1000 jobs presently being filled. As yet we are under no pressure from the Mexican authorities but it is possible that we soon may be. It would accordingly be helpful if the Department might expedite reply to the Embassy’s telegram No. 9 of January 4, 8 p.m.,83 since if by January 14 authorization is [Page 532] given for engaging additional workers all difficulty relating to the present large number of applicants will probably disappear. It would be preferable were we able in informing the Mexican Government of additional recruiting to be able to give them a well worked out plan as requested in the above cited telegram.

Farm Security people here point out that there may be some controversy in the United States in the event efforts are made to collect the victory tax84 and the California state compensation tax which is understood to be of 1%.

  1. For data on United States governmental agencies involved in the recruiting program, see telegram No. 1001, January 26, to the Chargé in Mexico, p. 537.
  2. Not printed; it indicated that large numbers of laborers refused to renew their contracts and returned to Mexico only to reappear in the recruiting lines in the next season. The Ambassador urged the Department to find a way of using these laborers between seasons. (811.504/1046)
  3. A five percent tax upon the “victory tax net income”, i. e., gross income less certain items such as depreciation, amortization, alimony, interest paid, etc. See Subchapter D of the Internal Revenue Act of 1942, 56 Stat. 884.