422. Memorandum From the Director of the Bureau of the Budget (Mayo) to President Nixon 1


  • Stockpile receipts

One major question has arisen in proceeding to implement your decision to achieve at least $750 million in FY 1971 receipts from sales from the materials stockpile. It reflects differing interpretations of your underlying and longer-range intent. It is our understanding that you wish the existing stockpile objectives to be amended or discarded to facilitate sales in FY 1971 and later years—rather than simply to obtain $750 million in FY 1971 alone without adjusting the objectives. If you wish to avoid sales being compromised to preserve objectives, we need your confirmation of the following—for transmittal to the responsible agencies.

The $750 million or more receipts in 1971 are not a one-time financial decision, but the initial step in a policy decision to dispose of at least $4 billion of the roughly $7 billion total assets.2 As such, the “objectives” which currently justify much of the stockpile quantities will not be used to restrict or prevent sales of any commodity.3

Robert P. Mayo
  1. Source: National Archives, Nixon Presidential Materials, NSC Files, Subject Files, Box 396, Stockpile. No classification marking. Mayo met with the President from 11:15 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. on December 30. (Ibid., White House Central Files, President’s Daily Diary) Presumably this memorandum was discussed at that meeting. Three handwritten, undated notes and a January 15, 1970, typewritten note from Haig to Lynn are attached to this memorandum. One of the notes, from Flanigan to Kenneth Cole, reads: “I believe (read ‘am sure’) that Kissinger has a study underway to determine the long range future of the stockpile. I think this broad language is unnecessary. Let’s concentrate now on changing objectives as necessary to sell $750 million. After the NSC study, let’s change objectives as is necessary to make the desired further sales. I suggest you have Kissinger see this.” A December 31 memorandum from Lincoln to Flanigan provided a table that set out an approach to achieve in FY 1971 $750 million in receipts from stockpile sales and related actions; the suggested actions were arranged in order of increasing difficulty. Lincoln noted that the $750 million figure had come from the Bureau of the Budget. (Ibid., NSC Files, Subject Files, Box 396, Stockpile)
  2. President Nixon changed “6” billion to “4” billion by hand.
  3. The President initialed the Approve option.