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Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

March 24, 1961

Members Present: Ralph A. Sawyer, Chairman; Wallace R. Brode; J. W. Buchta; S. A. Goudsmit; W. W. Havens, Jr.; R. Bruce Lindsay; G. E. Uhlenbeck

AIP Staff Present: Elmer Hutchisson; Wallace Waterfall; Henry A. Barton; Mary M. Johnson

The Chairman called the meeting to order at 9:30 a.m.

1. Minutes

Upon motion made, seconded and passed, the minutes of the meeting of February 3, 1961, were approved as distributed.

  1. Distribution of Minutes

    The Secretary recalled that the Executive Committee, at its meeting on February 3, had agreed to recommend to the Governing Board that the Board action of March 16, 1957, concerning distribution of minutes be rescinded; and that henceforth Executive Committee and Governing Board minutes be sent only to Board members and Society secretaries. Mr. Buchta said that the Secretary of AAPT had requested sufficient copies for distribution to other AAPT officers and the Secretary said he saw no objection to this if the Board approved.

2. Corporate Associates

  1. Status Report

    The Director distributed copies of a report on the current status of our Corporate Associates program and pointed out that gross and net income are already higher than budgeted for 1961. He stated that the value of journals that Corporate Associates are entitled to receive can amount to over $200 and, with minimum dues of $350, this leaves a net contribution of less than $150.00. The relatively few failures to renew membership are usually due to “major activity in chemistry” or “cutting down society memberships” and all such resignations have been coupled with very high praise for the program.

  2. Election of New Corporate Associates

    The Director reported that the following organizations had requested to become Corporate Associates of the Institute and, on motion duly made and carried, they were so elected:

    Litton Industries, Inc.$1,000
    Beckman Instruments, Inc.350
    Koppers Company350
    Barnes Engineering Company350

3. Percentage of Dues to be Paid by Member Societies in 1962

The Treasurer said it is customary for the Executive Committee to present a recommendation to the Board on this subject, and the staff suggests that the dues percentage for 1962 be continued at 10%. The following motion was made, seconded and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the Executive Committee recommend to the Governing Board that the dues percentage to be paid by Member Societies to the Institute in 1962 be set at 10% of dues collected in 1961.

4. Reports of Editors

The Director stated that annual reports had been received from all editors except Mr. Montroll, Editor of the JOURNAL OF MATHEMATICAL PHYSICS, who is abroad at the present time, and that these reports are available to anyone who wishes to see them. All of the reports reflect increased subscriptions and an increase in the number of manuscripts received. The subject of the publication charge was raised and there was a discussion of the growing interest of other scientific societies in adopting it.

5. Report on AAPT-AIP Regional Counselor Program

The Director distributed copies of an outline describing the subject program which, he said, is now going forward. Approximately 100 counselors will be appointed to report on local meetings about science education; to implement established programs at the local level; to maintain liaison with Student Sections, and to attend ceremonies as requested. AAPT has set aside $1,000 for this project and the staff recommends that AIP be authorized to appropriate a like amount. After brief discussion the following motion was made, seconded, and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the staff be authorized to provide $1,000 for the support of the AAPT-AIP Regional Counselor Program in Physics.

6. Review of Committee Appointments

Copies of a list of proposed committees and representatives for the current year, prepared in consultation with the Chairman and others, were distributed and the Secretary commented briefly on the suggested appointments. Mr. Brode reported that A. I. Mahan will replace E. D. McAlister as Treasurer of the Optical Society of America and Mr. Mahan’s name has been added to the Committee of Society Secretaries and Treasurers. The following motion was then made, seconded and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the suggested committees and representatives be approved with the provision that modifications may be made, if needed, during the year.

A list of AIP committees and representatives which have been appointed for the current year is attached.

7. Joint Meeting with AIP Property Committee

The Chairman introduced Messrs. Mark W. Zemansky, Chairman of the Property Committee, and Brunson S. McCutchen. The other members of the Committee, who were already present, are Messrs. Sawyer, Hutchisson and Waterfall.

The Secretary stated that there had been a meeting of the Property Committee in November of 1960 which was reported to the Executive Committee in December. He then reviewed in detail the Institute’s imminent need for more space and the investigations and studies made during the past year. AIP architects have made studies of building 6- and 12-story buildings on our property, beginning with an addition on the vacant lot as the first stage. They have also investigated the possibility and cost of remodeling other proffered properties for AIP occupancy. These studies have led the staff to conclude that the most acceptable solution is to construct a 4-story and basement addition of Class III construction on the vacant lot. Such an addition would furnish 17,300 square feet of usable floor space which, added to the 21,800 square feet in our present building, would provide for a staff of 200 which we estimate we may have by 1970. The addition would harmonize in appearance and be structurally comparable to our present building. Extension of the addition or our present building upward would not be possible and, when and if the staff exceeds 200, we will have to consider relocation, acquiring additional property nearby, or decentralization.

Estimates from preliminary plans indicate the cost of a 4-story and basement addition to be about $585,000, including architects’ and engineers’ fees, changes in present building, and provision for Consolidated Edison steam for both the addition and our present building. The addition can be financed by a mortgage of a little over $300,000 plus money from our Building Reserve (this should amount to about $230,000 by the middle of 1962) plus the $40,000 we expect from Mr. Heineman. We have an offer of such a mortgage at 5-5/8% which can be repaid by annual payments of $30,000 over 15 years. Of course, we shall try to do better. By reducing the rate of depreciation on our property and by obtaining some income from space not needed by AIP for a few years, we believe we can amortize the mortgage and provide for a modest reserve without adding much to costs.

The Secretary admitted that such financing does not provide reserves for the long-range future but questioned whether present-day physicists could possible provide for future generations with the current rate of growth. The land which the Institute owns is appreciating in value rapidly and is now worth much more than its book value of $266,000.00. It could be worth over $1,000,000 in 10 years, not a bad heritage.

Then followed discussion in which the Director said that Mr. Heineman’s $40,000 contribution for the library in the addition was contingent on our starting construction during this calendar year. The staff proposes starting this summer with the expectation of completing the addition by the middle of 1962. After further discussion the following motion was passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the Executive Committee and Property Committee recommend to the Board the proposed plan for constructing and financing a 4-story and basement addition to the Institute’s building on the adjacent lot and request authorization to proceed to execute the plan.

The Executive Committee and the Property Committee adjourned for luncheon at 12:10 p.m. and the Executive Committee reconvened at 1:55 p.m.

8. Review of Governing Board Agenda

A copy of the Governing Board agenda and a revised draft of the Director’s annual report were distributed. The Director said he would merely highlight some parts of his report at the Board meeting and answer any questions that might be raised. He called attention of the Executive Committee to a diagrammatic presentation of AIP financial activities on Page 13 of the report and explained its meaning.

Copies of the financial statement for the year ended December 31, 1960, were distributed (copy attached) and the Treasurer recalled that the Executive Committee has authorized the putting of $40,000 into an Operating Reserve and all income from investments into a Building Reserve in 1960. These facts should be borne in mind in comparing the 1959 and 1960 financial reports. Concerning specific operations and journals, the Treasurer made the following comments:

  1. Net income from advertising in Society-owned journals (Page 8) shows a loss to AIP of a little over $1,000 which means that we are handling such advertising for the Societies at a little less than our cost.

  2. Income for JCP (Page 10) was budgeted at $1,700 for 1961. Subsequently, however, 320 pages were added for the year so we expect now to have a deficit of between $5,000 and $10,000.00. The cost of getting the journal ready for printing has been figured at $38.61 per page which we believe indicates that the publication charge could justifiably be set at $38 per page.

  3. In the Statement of Administrative Expense (Page 5) Item 3, Prorated portion of Accounting and Special Services is considerably over budget for the year ended December 31, 1960. This is due to the fact that we changed our system of cost distribution from a per-head basis to a payroll basis and now AIP administrative operations bear a much larger share of the total cost. This also means that a smaller portion is charged to Society and Institute journals.

  4. The Balance Sheet shows that at the end of 1959 our net worth was $70,000 plus our land, building and equipment and the three special funds. At the end of 1960 it was $128,000 plus the items mentioned above, or about $58,000 more than the preceding year.

In a discussion of overhead, the Treasurer commented that Air Force auditors who have gone over our contract on THE PHYSICS OF FLUIDS have failed to agree on the amount of overhead which may properly be charged against the contract. It was suggested that the Treasurer contact other non-profit organizations to get their experiences and view on this subject and he agreed to do so.

Concerning the remaining items on the Governing Board agenda, the Director said that some of our department heads will be present at the meeting to report on their own activities. He called attention to one item, Role of the Institute in Encouraging Unity Among Physicists, and said that he would like to have opinions from Board members as to ways and means of encouraging unity more effectively.

With respect to another item, First John T. Tate Award, there is still a question as to whether the Award should include a gold medal. The Director distributed a statement setting forth the background and criteria for the Award and, after brief discussion, the following motion was made, seconded and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the above-mentioned statement of the John T. Tate Award be adopted, and that it be understood that a gold medal will accompany the Award.

9. NAS-NRC-AIP Physics Survey

The Director distributed copies of a letter from John Coleman of the Division of Physical Sciences, National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council, in which he suggested that the Institute join with the Academy-Research Council in establishing a group to prepare a survey of science as requested by the President’s Science Advisory Committee. During the discussion which followed it appeared there was some question as to what role the Institute would be expected to play in such a project, and Mr. Uhlenbeck agreed to contact Dr. Bronk, President of the Academy, for clarification. The following motion was then made, seconded and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that AIP offer to cooperate with the National Academy of Sciences in the proposed physics survey provided there will be no appreciable expense to the Institute other than a minimum of staff time.

10. Subscription Price Increase for JCP

The Secretary reported that, as stated previously, the page budget for JCP has been increased by 320 pages since the 1961 budget was prepared. The domestic subscription price has varied over the years from $12 in 1950 to $18 in 1959. Circulation was 4,880 in 1960 and our experience has shown that price increase do not have an adverse effect on circulation. Our studies indicate the price should be raised again and this is justified by the increased number of pages. In order for an increase to become effective in 1962, action must be taken at this time and, after brief discussion, the following motion was made, seconded and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the subscription prices for JCP be increased to $22 for domestic members and $35 for domestic non-members, with appropriate increases for foreign subscriptions, effective January 1962.

11. House Bill H.R.1

The Director reported that a bill had been introduced in Congress advocating the establishment of a national science academy, the purpose of which would be to train scientists who would then be committee to Government service for a certain number of years. In the discussion of this proposed legislation it was pointed out that such an academy would attract faculty away from existing institutions, and it was the consensus of the Executive Committee that the objectives could be accomplished more effectively through existing institutions. It was also felt that AIP should, when asked by the Government, offer advice and the following motion was made, seconded and passed without dissenting vote:

MOVED that the Director should feel free to oppose H.R.1 with the understanding that he has the support of the Executive Committee.

12. Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Executive Committee will be held at the offices of the Institute on Friday, June 9, 1961, starting at 9:30 a.m.

The meeting adjourned at 4:05 p.m.