February 13, 1928.
H. R. 11526.
Public No. 726


To authorize the construction of certain naval vessels and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the President of the United States is hereby authorized to undertake prior to July 1, 1931, the construction of fifteen light cruisers and one aircraft carrier according to the following program :

(a) Five light cruisers during each of the fiscal years ending June 30, 1929, 1930, and 1931, to cost, including armor and armament, not to exceed $17,000,000 each.

(b) One aircraft carrier prior to June 30, 1930, to cost, including armor and armament, not to exceed $19,000,000: Provided, That if the construction of any vessel herein authorized to be undertaken in the fiscal year ending June 30, 1929 or 1930, is not undertaken in that fiscal year, such construction may be undertaken in the next succeeding fiscal year: And provided further, That the first and each succeeding alternate cruiser upon which work is undertaken, together with the main engines, armor, and armament for such eight cruisers, the construction and manufacture of which is authorized by this Act, shall be constructed or manufactured in the Government navy yards, naval gun factories, naval ordnance plants, or arsenals of the United States, except such material or parts as are not customarily manufactured in such Government plants.

Sec. 2. The Secretary of the Navy is directed to submit annually to the Bureau of the Budget estimates for the construction of the foregoing vessels.

Sec. 3. The construction of the light cruisers and of the aircraft carrier herein authorized shall be subject to the limitations pre- scribed by the treaty limiting naval armament, ratified August 17, 1923, so long as such treaty shall remain effective.

Sec. 4. In the event of an international agreement, which the President is requested to encourage, for the further limitation of naval armament, to which the United States is signatory, the President is hereby authorized and empowered to suspend in whole or in part any of the naval construction authorized under this Act.

Sec. 5. First. That the Congress favors a treaty, or treaties, with all the principal maritime nations regulating the conduct, of belligerents and neutrals in war at sea, including the inviolability of private property thereon. Second. That such treaties be negotiated if practically possible prior to the meeting of the conference on the limitation of armaments in 1931.

Sec 6. The Secretary of the Navy is hereby directed to present to the Congress on or before December 10, 1929, preliminary plans, specifications, and estimates of cost for the construction of two salvage vessels for use in ship disasters.

Approved, February 13, 1929.