Officials of the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Energy plan to meet today to coordinate federal investigative efforts over the oil industry and its involvement in the present oil shortage.
The meeting is an outgrowth of two days of congressional hearings in which FTC Bureau of Competition Director Alfred Dougherty testified that his agency was getting no cooperation from the DOE in its probe of possible crude oil stockpiling by oil companies.
But DOE Deputy Secretary John F. O'Leary denied Dougherty's allegations, saying "we have received no requests for data from the FTC" in connnection with this investigation.
"It is incredible that two government agencies can't cooperate on this," said House Government Operations subcommittee chairman Benjamin Rosenthal (D-N.Y.) at the hearings, which he chaired. "People are shooting at each other at gas stations, and you ar e conducting leisurely negotiations over how to get information."
Both Dougherty and O'Leary will be at today's meeting, sources at both agencies said.
"The point is," Dougherty testified, "we need to get the information as fast as possible. In the post, when we sought information from oil companies of the DOE, if we got anything, it came late."