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I know my colleagues, some of whom might otherwise do well, will be doing all they can to not increase the number of hlnek elected of:ficials in this State. They will be doing their best to lessen that number. Thank you very much. . [The prepared statement of Mr. Figures follows:]
PREPARED TESTIMONY OF MICHAEL A. FIGURES, ALABAMA STATE S~JNA'I'On

voting system. With titl,. kind of oxsumplefbf~i~1 .b~t.~'gS~g~ei~t~, ;:O~c~i~e~; set 111'11011108 do you think Ioool and tate 0 icia s rrug . ffi

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Itlw~n :of~~:rc~:%u~i~ie~~~tt~~~~ t::~int Deputy .Registrars? Are limited V. te~ o ltogisfration days and hours designed to prevent massive Voter Reglstrdtl?n dfilves III this why after 1968, the percentage of black voters has not increase sigm ican -

The question I should like to propose at the outset as a framework to my brh.f statement is this: By what logic can one assume that 100 years of slavery and institutionalized racism can be eliminated, particularly, in it's historically mos] concentrated areas, within the 16 years that the Voting Rights Act was placed on the books of this country? Voting, of course, is the most fundamental right in the democracy. What then gives us the authority to believe that the right so murderously denied, just 16 yeara ago, that Congress sought to furthet support the protection already provided in the United States Constitution, is now no longer necessary? The fact is that most of those who were in power at the time the Voting Rightll Act passed and at whom it was aimed for the. most part, are still alive. and doing well and their spirits have not been cleansed by the well of redemption. They believe no more now than they did then, that black votes should be freely allowed. There have been few, if any accommodations by them, if you look at it closely. THE TEST, I submit, is not how many black elected officials have been elected because of or 'under the Voting Rights Act, and indeed there really have been many in proportion to our number. But rather, how many whites have voted for those blacks who were elected? . There may be Some isolated examples somewhere, where a large number of whites have voted for a black, but not in Birmingham, where Mayor Arrington 18 from; not in Evergreen where Mr. Fluker comes from and certainly the less than 270 white votes that I received in 1978, in a district that is over 40 percent white is evidence of pattern existent throughout this state and the entire South. As long as racially polarized voting' exists, there will be a need for a Voting Rights Act to protect against white politicians who will do all they can to insure that they stay in office in areas not having large black populations. You see what the Alabama Legislature did just last month in Lowndes, Wilcox and Sumter Counties. They resist single member district election systems by doing as my home town, I am not proud to say, has done. They have spent in excess of $600,000 already to keep an at-large election scheme that has prevented any black from being elected to a three-member City Commission in the history of the city. They don't have money to stop homes from flooding every time we have a hard rain because they spend it to keep blacks out of city halls. . Now.,the Supreme Court has said that we must show that the form of government we have was established in 1911 for the specific-purpose of excluding blacks from office. We must show that it was intentional. It is fundamentally absurd that you don't have to show intent to damage another's person or property in a traffic accident, but you have to show intent when a whole race of people's right to vote and consequent right to have access to public office is damaged-in fact, denied. Why should you have to prove intent in a town where in 1976, the Bicentennial Year, you will recall, a group of more than 8 white 'policemen attempted to hang a black man; where just this past Tuesday morning, a white policeman is accused of raping a black woman? Why should you have to prove intent where the only black policemen who rank above patrolmen in the Mobile Police Department are three black sargeanta, all who were put there by Court Order, while a white counterpart, who used the word "nigger" just 2% months ago in decribing a black suspect is promoted to major and a white policeman who has killed three blacks' and paralyzed another run's for City Commissioner against an incumbent who has allowed these things to go on in the police' department? ., . Black elected city officials could begin to address these problems that white officials ignore because they know that white voters eject them and will not hold their mistreatment of black folks against them. No wonder that Senator Jerimiah Denton feels he has to-right through political pressure to. involve himself ina Voting' Right Suit in his hometown because "There has been no discrimination there since he has been horne." What.further evidence do you need to see the extent to which white politicians will go to project an at-large

lY~n a wa it is strange that we talk here of!ll!ow~~g one of the major achievemonts' perhaps the Major.achievement of the CIVIlnghts struggle t\hXPI~e ... h in d 'when as~aults against blacks, and the Ku Klux Klan are on .e ~lse, w en 1I, a: ern 10 ment ..is disproportionately high. You, kn.ow, the majorrty of the g of a.ydoun g :~I~~k~mm~n!ty in Mobile believes that the reeent,Jynchm tbhlacbk.bth~ I . II . t'. t d and here we arein montgomery, In ee, d e rr ~~~:~fet~e r~i~ii Jg~~ I~~:emen~ wh~re the Voting Rights Act was actually born and we are here talking about lettingdie.

Mr. EDWARDS. Thank you, Senator. . Mr. Fluker\/~ . ~ . . TESTIMONY OF LARRY FLUKER. . Mr. FLUKER.Mr. Chairman, members of the subcommittee, I am Larr Fluker of Conecuh County, Evergreen, Ala. I ,am president of the 60necuh County branch of the NAACP and VIce chairman of the Conecuh County. Democratic.,?onference. . . In addition, I am a deputy regIstrar, and have held the position since June of 1978, C h C t In 1964, I became the- first pr:esident of the onecu ou~ y branch NAACP, just-one year prior-to the .passage of the Voting Rights Act. .. . d f d t b th At the time a number of community leaders ra te me. 0 e e NAACP president because. I was. mthe funeral and. Insurance business. Therefore, they thought. it ;would be. more difficult for whites.to bring economic reprisals against me, . ". I was only 20 years .oldthen, but I accepted th.e c~allenge because I saw the need for a civil .rights organization in Conecuh County . 1 id tif d .For the most part, teachers were afraid' to be open y 1 en 1 ie with the NAACP then. . h Prior to the signing of the Voting RIghts Act, t ere were ap.. t 1 1000 black voters in Conecuh County. But after r~;~~aof Lean recall vividly the long lines of black people who came from throughout the county to re~pst~r, .' We even had Federal registrars .to assist in the regIstratIon process. Today Conecuh County has approximately 3,600 black registered voters. . d for Co h The black. population, based on the 1980 census ~ta or necu County, is 6,534. We are 41.1 percent of the POpul~tlOn. . .. .>L:.. Excluding the Black Belt counties, Conecuh IS one of the few 1'\ ~ounties which has' a black population of over 40 percent. Despite our numbers we have been unable to elect any blacks to county office becaus~ of racial bloc voting. Tw f In 1980 we had three blacks to run for county office." . 0 0 them wer~ in runoffs. And one lost by a.margm of approxImately 250 votes in an at-large election. . . In 1978 we had two blacks to seek county office.

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1.(j !.Ii In 1976 there was only one black candidate in a race. In fact, IlB early. a~ 197 2, ~e had a black to run for county office. It I~ ..mterestmg to note. t~at prio.r t~ 1972 Conecuh County had four single-rnember cornrmssroner districts. District 1 was predominan~ly ~lack, with a black population of 60.1 percent. . District 2 was 43.7 percent black. . District 3 was 41 percent black. And District 4 was 38.1 percent black. In 1971,.n.oweve.r, at the .request of the Conecuh County Commission; .an act was introduced and passed the Alabama Legislature, merging .the. four single-member districts into two districts. The former dl~trl~tS 1 and 2 were merged, forming a new district 1. For~er dist.ricts 3 and 4 ~ere merged, creating anew district 2. ThIS merger of former smgle member districts definitely diluted the. b~ack vote. Because after the merger neither district had a majority of blacks. I 'learned about the change in commission districts m 1980. The changes were never submitted to the Justice Department for preclearance. In fact, the J~stice De~artment indicated that Conecuh County ~ad never s ubmitted any reports with respect to changes in election procedures. In any case, I ran for place 2 on the Evergreen City Council in 1980.. To my amazement and that of the enti.re black community, the ~Ity clerk who serv~d as election supervisor In all municipal elections, left off approximately 200 black voters on the officialIist, Many of the people who were left off had lived in the city for years. Many were prominent citizens. None of these folk were told that they could vote a challenge ballot. Cons~quently, they had to-go by city hall and pick up a certificat~on. slip before they could vote. Because of this. requirement, a significant number o~these people did not return to vote. At one of the pollmg places in the courthouse, one of our poll watchers repon;ed that 28 black names were left off the list. Thirteen of them did not return to vote. As a result, the only incumbent black member .on the ~ouncil at the time lost by four votes. Unfort.unately, this cou~cIl member seemed afraid to challenge the election, so he. never did. Incidentally, although there were two white incumbent council members who were unopposed, another white candidate chose to run against the black mcumbent.' . ~ In my case, a white store manager who had been in Evergreen tor less th.an 2 years, .ran against me. One of the white candidates even admitted that hIS reason for running against a black candidate was because he felt he could beat him. . The inference one can draw. from that is that the whitecandidate was counting on the white bloc vote to elect him. Although Conecuh County now has nine black deputy registrars-e-plus the. c~aI~man of the board of registrars is black the resistance to appointing deputyregistrars initially was astounding. For o~er a week we battled WIth the board before they consented to appoint QS. However, we went out and registered almost 800 people In 2 months. The white chairman of the Board. resigned in protest. The vacanc~ which was created paved the way for Governor Wallace to appoint the first black registrar in Alabama.

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In addition to Hot; having any black elected .officials in Conecuh County, our efforta to get blacks appointed as poll workers have also been frustrated. ' . Both the Conecuh County -Democratic Executive Committee and the .election supervisory ccmmitteebeve-gtven us the. runaround in terms of appointing blacks to work-the polls. The election' supervisory .committee claims that it cannot appoint, poll workers but only .accepts recommendation' from committee members. ) However, I know of an instance where a man went to a com missionerand asked him to get the election supervisory committee to appoint his wife to work the polls. It was done. Incidentally, during the '1980 elections Conecnh County had less than '12 blacks, working 'at the .polls out-of approximately 140 poll workers. . I forgot to mention earlier that as a result of our protesting the city clerk striking approximately 200 black voters from the list last summer, the JustiCe Department sent in 70 Federal observers to monitor. the' primary elections last September. Approximately 25 returned for the runoff election. . , The Federal' observers decided to return for the runoff elections because they observed a number of irregularities at several of the polling places. In several instances it was reported that the poll workers were quite rude to the Federal observers. At the Cedar Creek polling place, poll officials would not let several black voters come inside the polling house out of the rain. One official slammed the door in my face when I .asked him to permit the voters to come in out of the rain. This same poll official made some threats later, stating that he would be ready for the niggers when we came back for the runoff election. One of the things that the poll officials resist most is the law which ~ermits assistance to voters who are illiterate, handicapped, or don t know how to operate the voting machine. There are repeated attempts on the part of poll workers to deny illiterate voters to select people of their own choosing to assist them in voting. In wrapping up,1 wish to point out that Conecuh County has been selected by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights as one of four counties in the South on which it will do an intensive election probe. The local officials have not taken too kindly to this thought. In fact the editor of the local paper said that Conecuh County elections don't need the Feds to stick their noses in local politics. In his column of August 28, 1980, the editor of the Evergreen Coutant advised local officials to cooperate with the Federal observers. Also, as a final statement to his readers, the editor wrote, "I really don't think there is anything to hide. Elections in this county have been conducted fairly and honestly for at least 10 years now." To say the least, that is an interesting comment. For. the editor implies that 10 years ago, in 1970, elections may not have been conducted fairly in Conecuh County. That revelation supports my contention all the more that we need the Voting Rights Act extended. Because, justvas the editor didn't speak of corruption or

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battled with the board before they Initially was astounding, For over a weekt, w~ and registered almost 800 people 10 d ' t us However we wen ou d" otest The vacancy eonsente 'to apPolnh't . Ch lr man of the Board resigne In pr . t the first black . two months, the w led th ",e" frw Governor Wallace to appom, which ,was created pave e "-0 --. t Itegistrar. i!l Alabama. havi ny black elected officials 'on COrnect t CtBolh ~~~ In addition to not avmg a 11 k have also been rus. rate . . offorts to get blacks appom~ed as POt' wOCo~~ittee and the Election' Superv:~~! Conecuh County Democratic Execu ive , terms of appointing black:' to wor . Committee have given us ~he ruCa~o~?t<te~n claims that it cannot appomt ~~n~~r~f oils The Election Supervisory ~ ittee members. However,. . ~rs but only accepts recommendatIOn from c?m~land asked him to get the ele~dtIon . stance were a man went to a c~m~lsslOn -k holls. It was done, In~1 anS~~~rvisOry Committee to ~ppojnt his ~I~ t~t~O~ad\e~:than 12 blacks workmg at tall during the-'1980 electIOns, Conecu u . ; . th/polls, out of approxim~tely 140 poll worl~o~f'our protesting the ci~y.clerk strlkl~g I forgot to menti9n el;lther tha~ as at~eSl\t last summer, the Justice Dept. .sen~l~ approximately 200 black vo~rs trhom . e a~y elections last September approxlma 70 Federal observers to monitor e prrm , 25 returned for the runoff ele~tlOn. t for the runoff elections because the The Federal o~servf:~ de;~~:~it~s r:t~~veral of the pO.lling ~la~es't~~ F:d:~~l observed a.:num er 0 tlrJeth t the poll workers were quite ru e 0 instances, It was repor e a , . 1 black voters observers . 11 ffici Is would not let severa , At the 'Cedar Creek polling place'fPoh 0 ~cla One official slammed the doo~ In my 11' g house out 0 t e ram. t f the rain ThIS same come insi de t h e po . l~ , it the voters to come in ou 0, d "for' the face when. 1 asked him to perrm 1 t stating the he would be rea Y . . I de some threats a er, . poll 0 ffiicia ma b k for the runoff election, .' h rmits assistni'irers" f~~i~g;~~:f:he a~oll officials ~esist most id th;~ ~~:~~w ~ operate the netoo voters who are illiterate, handicapped, orth~n art of poll worker~ to d~ny ~~~i~ machine. There' are repeated at~mpts o~hoosi~g to assist them In voting-

discrimin.ation he may have known about 10 years ago, it is hi.!{hly unlikely he will do so now. [The prepared statement of Mr. Fluker follows:]
'PREPARED TESTIMONY OF LARRY FLUKER, CONECUH COUNTY, ALA.

Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee: I am Larry Fluker of Conecuh County, in Evergreen, Alabama. I am president of the Conecuh County Branch NAACP and Vice Chairman of the Conecuh County Democratic Conference. In addition, I am a Deputy Registrar, and have held the position since, June of 1978. In 1964, I became the first president of the Conecuh County Branch NAACP, just one' year prior to the passage of the Voting Rights Act. At the time, a number of community leaders drafted me to be the NAACP president-because I was in the funeral and insurance business. Therefore, they though it would be more difficult for whites to bring economic reprisals against me. I was only 20 years old then, but I accepted the challenge because I saw the need ,. or a civil rights organization in f Conecuh C()unty.For the most part, teachers were afraid to be openly identified with the NAACP, then. ' Prior to the signing of the Voting Rights Act" there were approximately 1,000 black voters in Conecuh County. But after August of 1965, I can recall vividly the long lines of black people who came from throughout the county to register. We even had 'Federalregistrars to assist in the registration process. Today, Conecuh County has approximately 3,600 black registered voters. The black population based on the 1980 census data for Conecuh County is 6,534'.We are 41.1 percent of the population. Excluding the black belt counties, Conecuh is one of the few counties which has a black population of over 40 percent. Despite our numbers, we have been unable to elect any blacks to county office because of racialblcic voting. In 1980, we had three blacks to run for county office. Two of them were in runoffs. And one lost by a margin of approximately 250 votes in an at-large election, In 1978, we had two blacks to seek county office. In 1976, there was only one black candidate in a race. In fact, as early as 1972, we had a black to run for county office. It is interesting to note that prior to 1971, Conecuh County had four single member commissioner districts. District one was predominately black, with a black population of 60.1 percent. District two was 43.7 percent black. District three was 41.0 percent black. And district four was 38.1 percent black, In 1971, however, at the request of the Conecuh County Commission, an Act was introduced and passed the Alabama legislature, merging the four' single member districts into two districts, The former districts 1 and 2 were merged, forming a new district 1. Former districts 3 and 4 were merged, creating a new district 2. This merger of former single member districts definitely diluted the black vote. Because after the merger, neither district had a majority of blacks. I learned about the change in commission districts in 1980. The changes were never submitted to the Justice Department for pre-clearance. In fact, the Justice Department indicated that Conecuh County had never submitted any reports with respect to changes in election procedures, In any case, I ran for place 2 on the Evergreen City Council in 1980. To my amazement and that of the entire black community, the city clerk, who served as election supervisor in all municipal elections, left off approximately 200 black voters on the official list. Many of the people who were.left off had Iived in the city for years: Many were prominent citizens. None of these folk were told that they could vote a challe-nge ballot. Consequently, they had to go by City Hall and pick up a certification shp before they could vote. Because of this requirement, 8 significant number of these people did not return to vote. At one of the polling places in the courthouse, o'ne of our poll watchers reported that 28 black names were left off the list. 13 of them did not return to vote. As a result, the only incumbent black member on the council at the time, lost by four votes. Unfortunately, this council member seerraed afraid to challenge the election. So he never did, Incidentially, although there were two white incumbent council members who were unopposed, another white candidate chose to run against the 'black incumbent. In my case, a white store manager who had been in Evergreen for less than two years ran against me. One of the white candidates even admitted that his reason for running against a black candidate' was because he felt he could beat him. The inference one can draw from that is that the white candidate was counting on the white bloc vote to elect him. Although Conecuh County now has 9 black deputy regiatrars-cplus the Chairman of the Board of Registrars is black,the resistance to appointing Deputy Registrars

Ulite;ate v?ters to se~:~tuf~~~:~~tt~h!~ c:~ecuh C:Ou~ty~as b:~ ~rllt~~ In wrapp~n~ up, l C"l Rights as one of four counties In t so too kindly to this ~~Si~~~~:s~~~c~~~ oI~h:l~~~t~~~:~s s~tdv~~~t c~l:~~ ofl~~~t ;ro~fht, 1nt~:c"FEDS" to stick their noses m loca1 P.Oh~ICl~C!S officials to cooperate 28n 198'Oehe editor of the Evergreen CO!lrantt:t=:nt t to his readers, t~e editor with th~ Federal observers. Also, .as a ftlhn.al to hide a .' elections in this county "I 11 d n't think there IS any mg . w . wrote: enr::nJuc~d fairly and honestly for at least 10 ~:~h~n~ditor implies that 10 haT~~: the least, that is an interestmg'comme~~1ted fai~ly in Conecuh Cou~ty. y . 1970 eleCtions may not have been co that we need the Voting years ago 10, tention all the more f ption or ~t;~:e~~r!~~~d~d.or~c~JseCj~sb aS ~ge e~::':go~ift~thii~l~\~lik~~e will do discrimination he may have knoW a ou t Y so-now. h Mr Fluker. \./\..... -~Mr. Enw ARDS. Thank y<?u~ery mucn, - -gton. . The gentleman from IllInOIS,~r. Was~i~mingham is .in Jefferson Mr. WASHINGTON. Mayor Arrmgton, County, right? ._ Alabama- Yes, ItwIhS. you had reidentification there, the black Mr. EDWARDS. . en t up 5 percent or 10 pecent and white registratlOn percent~ge wen for each group ' t' ft r reidentification, black registration was In Choctaw Coun y, a e e th t? . h If H w do you account lor a. rtrtpr in which cut In .a '. 0 . 11 h e to consider the ma ...:~- 1 Mr. ARRINGTON. We ,we av f th Board of RegIstrars app r. local authorit~es such a~ roember~n~tan~es the authority exists a} the law. I thmk that mdmany ith the abridgement of some 0 . State and local levels to 0 away WI ., the rights that we are concerned about.

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However, were people willing to shoulder that responsibility l~t. these ' levels, there never would have been a need for tho Voting Rights Act in the first place. I1'\ Birmingham you had an urbanized area, a very active registration campaign, a very 'cooperative Board of Registrars in terms of using deputy registrars, in terms of trying to promote voter reidentif'ication. . Compared with some of the rural counties, it is very, very unique in that regard. In rural counties, you often times get just the opposite. Reidentification may very well be used as a means of-as a deterrent to voting. Mr. WASHINGTON. it your fear that reidentification or ploys Is such as that would proliferate if this act, or the. preclearance sections were permitted to expire? Ploys like that would proliferate? . Mr. ARRINGTON. Yes. I think preclearance is absolutely essential to assuring complete access to the voting box. Preclearance, I think is absolutely essential not only for the rural counties, but I think for the entire State of Alabama. Preclearance is' important. It serves as a deterrent to potential practices that might abridge one's right to vote. . In a very short time, for example, consider the fact we are going through redistricting or we will be going through redistricting, reapportionment in the State of Alabama. Consider the fact that you can take that with home rule and a single act of the legislature, can wipe out all the gains we made in voting and everywhere else, including in Jefferson County. I think preclearance is an absolute necessity if we are going to continue to make progress toward giving everybody equal access to voting rights. Mr. WASHINGTON. yield. I Mr. HYDE. I have no questions. Thank you. Mr. EDWARDS. enator Figures, the secretary of state, I believe, S said if the Alabama legislature really did its work, we would not have to be down here . . It would not be necessary to have a Voting Rights Act, is that . right? Mr. FIGURES.Yes, sir.' I think his more exact words were that there were a couple of white reactionary legislators who keep reaction reform from passing which, if it were passed, the election law would not be necessary. Mr . EDWARDS. They are not a majority? Mr. FIGURES.No, but there are more than two. There are 105 members of the Alabama House. Thirteen are black. The remainder are white. Of that number, I would say 70 percent feel that way. The same thing is true in the senate.' One senator in the senate has a local veto power over any legislation affecting the entire county, whether in his senate district or not. I represent senate district 33. There are three others representing a part of Mobile County. Either of us can veto any legislation pertaining to the entire county. It is true if the Alabama legisla-

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ture would do itl:J job there would be no need Jar the Voting Rights

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I might point out polarized voting is so great in this State that it does not behoove them politically to make decisions advantageous to black folks. Mr. EDWARDS. You are saying if they did their job they wouldn't get re-elected? . Mr. FIGURES. hey feel that way.. T . I take the position it is about time' they de~onstrated leaders~np and begin to advance .at the political leadership level the .n0t~on that black folks can run and be elected on the basis of quahficatlon and that they should not be making' decisions on the basis of racial considerations, but they always do. . Mr. EDWARDS. Thank you. . ~----.--.--Mr. Fluker, you pointed out that inConecuh County this :edlstricting was done that was obviously discriminatory but you dISCOVered it 9 'years later. Mr. FLUKER. es. Y Mr ... DWARDS. has never been submitted to the Justice DepartE It ment? That points out somethingthat I believeMr. Washington was concerned with and rightly so. . . The Voting Rights Act, the preclearance p-rovisions, are volun~ tary ..The jurisdictions have to do this in a voluntary manner and then the Justice. Department acts in a voluntary manner too. That sometimes can result in great delays: . . Perhaps that is somethingthat we should address in the future. Not having it quite as voluntary as it is. I imagine that was quite a shock for .you to discover that something happened 9 years .earlier that had never complied with. the
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Mr. FLUKER.Yes, sir, that is true. In fact, we .learn'ed about it when we got in touch with the Justice Department because we were dissatisfied with not having a significant. number of poll workers and when we began to report the incident that happened with the city election, we were amazed at the fact that there had been no submission on the part of the county commission: . .Of course, I think that generally in Conecuh County nobody IS aware of the change that took place in 1971. Mr. EDWARDS. Thank you very much. Are there other questions? Thank you very much, members of the' panel. . Mr. EDWARDS. Our last witness this morning is thepresident of the Alabama League of. Women Voters from Birmingham, Ala., Anne Findley-Shores. . .

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TESTIMONY OF ANNE FINDLEY -SHORES, PRESIDENT, ALABAMA LEAGUE OF WOMEN VOTERS Ms. FINDLEySHORES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. .' Mr. EDWARDS. s. Findley-Shores, welcome. Your entIre stateM ment will be made part of the record. Without objectiQn, you may proceed. . Ms. FINDLEy-SHORES. Chairman, members of the subcommitMr. tee, I am Anne F:indleyShores.