« PreviousContinue »
the commission to personally inspect this very important installation in order to judge the wisdom of its application in principle to the much larger project embraced in the problem presented by the Colorado River.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you, Doctor Ricketts. Is Doctor Kimball in the room?
STATEMENT OF THOMAS S. KIMBALL, FARMER, GRAHAM COUNTY,
Mr. KIMBALL. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, I am a farmer and have lived in Arizona about 46 years. I believe that this is the largest assembly of United States Senators that I ever saw, and I don't want to hang back; I want to get just as close to you as I can.
I am very much amazed with the attitude of the people of these great States. I came into this State, just a farmer boy, when it was wild and rugged, and have grown up with it. When I see people who have recently come here attempt to barter away Arizona's birthright I feel, as the aboriginees must have felt, that they are treading upon sacred soil, taking the very lifeblood out of this State that I have helped to develop and subdue and make it possible for us to live here.
All we want, gentlemen, is our rights. Have you traveled over this vast desert? Probably some of you are not as old as I am. Probably some of you are older. I hope some of you have more sense than I have.
I have nearly lived out my existence, but I want to see future generations taken care of. Are we going to turn this country dry!
It may be that some of you young Senators in years to come will ride over this vast country in company with your son. After you have crossed the river and gotten into another country, another State, he might ask you, “ Father, why is this country we have just left a desert? Why are the flowers blooming on this side of the river and on the other side there is nothing but a barren desolate waste?
These are some of the things that I am thinking about.
The CHAIRMAN. Doctor, won't you tell us briefly what you would have us do?
Mr. KIMBALL. Yes. I say that it is not impossible to take care of the Colorado River--not nearly as impossible as it was when I came in here and followed a scraper to help take out water for irrigation—and develop this valley. I say build a dam, a reservoir; protect your country.
I suppose that from the talk that I have heard here to-day that you favor the Boulder Canyon Dam. I honestly believe that, Senator. Why is all this Boulder Canyon talk? Why does every committee that comes out run around Boulder Canyon? What is the matter with we people here? Is it because we are infants?
Now let's build a dam. If you want a flood-control dam, let's build it; but don't let's start at the end of the river. Let's go up high enough so that it will protect the people below and then be of some use after it has done its work. Not that we want to fight with California or anybody else.
The ChairMAN. Well, I understand, Doctor, in a word, you are not in favor of the construction at this time of a dam at Boulder Canyon! Mr. KIMBALL. No; I am not. The CHAIRMAN. Do you want any dams constructed ?
Mr. KIMBALL. Certainly; Glen Canyon, Bridge Canyon, Dewey Canyon, or any other canyon where it will help hereafter. You Senators know that if you build the Boulder Canyon Dam the water is going to Mexico. There is no doubt about that. Read your cam-pact. See what is behind it. You eastern Senators take this into consideration.
Senator PHIPPS. There are none here. Senator JONES. There aren't any here. . Mr. KIMBALL. None here. Well, we are trusting you to take it up and give us our rights; take care of us as an infant State until the State is big enough to take care of itself. If you will give us our reservations we will do it.
I just want to say this in regard to the question that was asked in reference to power: If the Boulder Canyon Dam were built, it would be upon Nevada and Arizona soil. Would we give the power to California! What would you do? What would any State do? That dam would be upon territory of Nevada and Arizona. Let's go over into California and put the shoe on.
The CHAIRMAN. Doctor, can you conclude in two minutes ?
Mr. KIMBALL. You bet. I will be glad to for fear I will get in trouble.
Let's go over into California and dabble with her rivers. Where would ge get off? We have been over there several times. We have tried to study this matter and determine what was going on. I know we are willing to make it right. There are big enough men in Arizona to go before the people and make things right. We want our rights. That is what we are contending for, and we trust your as the representatives of this great Nation to see that we get our rights. I thank you.
Now, if there is any question, I would be glad to attempt to answer it.
The CHAIRMAN. I think not. You have made your position very clear.
Senator ASHURST. Mr. Chairman, my colleague, who is unavoidably absent to-day, requested me to see that Mr. E. W. Michael had an opportunity to address the committee. That is the only request my colleague made, and it is my duty, as well as the demand of courtesy, to ask that Mr. Michael be given opportunity to address the committee.
STATEMENT OF E. W. MICHAEL, PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD OF
DIRECTORS OF THE VERDE RIVER IRRIGATION AND POWER DISTRICT, PHOENIX, ARIZ.
Mr. MICHAEL. Mr. Chairman, it was our understanding that the Secretary of the Interior had referred the dispute between the Salt River Valley Water Users' Association, a Government financed project, and the Verde River Irrigation & Power District, to have the matter of their dispute come before this committee.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, may I advise you quite to the contrary. It is an administrative matter over which the Secretary of the Interior has exclusive jurisdiction. If we wanted to take this matter up and felt that we could aid you, we could not do it because we are restricted by the terms of the resolution, namely, to study the Colorado River Basin project. If any of the members can see you independently of the meeting, they may advise with you. I assure you that we would like to be helpful, if we could, as individual members.
Mr. MICHAEL. Yes; it was our understanding that this matter was referred to this committee.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, not so; quite to the contrary, as I have said to you. Have you anything to say on the matter of the Colorado River?
Mr. MICHAEL. I have nothing to say on that.
The CHAIRMAN. Very well. I regret the situation is as it is, but it is beyond my remedying.
Senator ASHURST. Of course, I know it is, Mr. Chairman, and I desire to say that the chairman has shown such exquisite courtesy to each member of this committee that I know if under the terms of the resolution he could hear this gentlemen he would do so on behalf of my colleague and myself.
The CHAIRMAN. Yes; it is with great regret that we can not hear this.
STATEMENT OF JAMES H. SAYERS, PHOENIX, ARIZ.
Mr. SAYERS. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, I am representing the High Line Association as State organizer. There is one proposition that I had expected would be brought to your attention to-day, and that is a possible solution of this difficulty over the Colorado River compact. I believe that the people of the lower basin will consent to an understanding to the effect that the upper basin shall have the right, not only now but forever, to use all the water they can apply economically to their lands. 'I believe we will agree to that. May I state what I predicate that upon and why I believe that the people of the lower basin will agree to that?
There are about 9,400,000 acres of irrigated lands and the projects that are proposed for irrigation, feasible and infeasible, in the whole Colorado basin-about 5,000,000 in the lower basin and 4,000,000 in the upper, in round' numbers, with the odd thousand thrown out. I believe the Governor of Colorado stated that there are only 3,500,000 in the upper basin, but I am allowing an extra 500,000 acres. If we were to undertake to irrigate all this land at once and give a toll in the lower basin of 5 acre-feet, which is usually applied to new or raw land, and give a proportionate amount to the upper basin, which requires less on account of climatic conditions, we would be about 1,698 acre-feet short. I have got that wrong—12,400 acre-feet short. All of this land can not be irrigated at once. It will take years to irrigate it, possibly 30 years. Much of it never will be irrigated. A number of these projects are not feasible. Reduce the toll in the lower basin to 3 acre-feet and a proportionate amount for the upper basin-the Salt River Valley here for two years has used 2.5 and 2.6 acre-feet as their toll. They originally irrigated 130,000 or 140,000 acres. They are irrigating 250,000 to 260,000 acres to-day off of the same amount of water. We have got plenty of water. There is sufficient water in that river, an estimated annual average compensated flow of 20,500,000 acre-feet. Exclusive of what is consumed, the compensated flow of that river gives an abundance of water for that amount of toll for all of these projects, even including those that are infeasible.
I believe an agreement can be reached, giving the upper basin that right and it will settle the question of the Colorado River compact.
I offer that suggestion so that it may be discussed. May I file just a little clipping that answers a prominent engineer? The CHAIRMAN. Very well, it will go in the record.
Mr. SAYERS. And the prominent engineer is present. He can object if he wants to.
Senator KENDRICK, Mr. Sayers-
Senator KENDRICK. That statement is very encouraging to those who in part represent the upper basin States. I want to ask you a question that was prompted by your statement. Do you not believe it would be quite within the range of possibilities for a conference to be arranged between the people of this State and of California and Nevada through which they would be able to compose their differences along the same lines that you suggest ?
Mr. SAYERS. Upon those lines, I believe so.
Senator KENDRICK. An agreement that could probably be accepted by the upper basin States?
Mr. SAYERS. Upon those lines I believe we could iron that out. It will require some little education of our people down here upon that proposition. We have been talking it off and on for the last six months only, and I have mentioned it and it has met with approval so far. But there are a great many people, who, not having studied the finer details of irrigation, do not understand that if you use water here this basin naturally divides into three parts and not two—an upper basin down to Lees Ferry, a middle basin, Arizona, and lower basin, California. The upper basin returns a very large proportion of their water. They are heavily underlaid with bed rock, and within this basin we don't care how much water they use. The middle basin will return a fair proportion but not nearly so much in proportion as the upper. California can not return any water.
In conclusion, I want to give you a humble illustration. Suppose you have got 20 feet of water. The upper basin wants 10, the middle basin wants 10, and the lower basin 10. You are 10 feet short. But you give the upper basin 10 and they return 6, and you give the middle basin 10 and they return 4. Your lower basin has got enough, hasn't it?
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you, Mr. Sayers. That concludes the witnesses that have been named, whose names have been submitted to the chairman.
Senator Ashurst, have you any additional witnesses !
Senator ASHURST. No other witnesses have signified a desire to appear.
Mr. COLTER. Mr. Chairman.
Mr. COLTER. With reference to the filing of papers, I want to get clear in my mind whether these papers are going in the record, because they are relative to the many years of development of these projects we propose.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, I will state that it takes a little time to look into that. These are filed with the clerk until the chairman has had time to study their relevancy. If they are relevant, they will be published in the record, so that anyone who desires may read them.
Mr. COLTER. I want to make this observation: That there are volumes and volumes on the Boulder Canyon and very little on this, and it pertains to this development.
The CHAIRMAN. Very well, Mr. Colter. We will be fair about that.
I desire to thank the witnesses from this portion of Arizona on behalf of the committee for coming out and giving us the many observations and the advantage of your opinions.
I have a letter from Mr. W. S. Norviel, of Phoenix, containing an interesting statement on the subject of the Colorado River development.and will ask that it be inserted in the record.
COLORADO RIVER DEVELOPMENT
PHOENIX, ARIZ., November 6, 1925. Hon. CHARLES L. McNARY,
Chairman, and Members of the Senate Committee: In the hearings held by your honorable committee in the Southwest to ascertain the attitude of the people on the various angles of the greatest and most troublesome questions for solution by our people at the present time—the development of the Colorado River and the Colorado River compact-the Senate committee heard a great many facts and no doubt a great deal of fiction.
The Colorado, being an international and interstate stream, more than 1,500 miles in length, carrying a large volume of water, is one of the greatest undeveloped resources left in the United States. Rising 14,000 feet above sea level, in its drop to the sea it comprehends enormous potential electric energy.
The international status is plain. That part of the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, 1848, which concerned the Colorado, was abrogated and annulled in the Gadsden treaty, 1853, and restated, in which there is no reservation of any water for any purpose by Mexico nor any restriction on the use of water in the United States, neither for navigation, irrigation, nor any other purpose.
Though practically the same law of appropriation obtains in Mexico as does in the States of the Colorado River Basin in the United States, neither the laws nor the practice pertaining to the use of water in either country have any control in the other. The Colorado, having its source in the United States, is a resource of the United States and may be utilized as any other resource in the United States even to complete extinguishment and violate no treaty with nor any legal right of Mexico.
An international stream is a natural international servitude. The country through which it flows is dominant and the country into which it flows is the servient country. As to the Colorado, the United States is the dominant and Mexico is the servient country. The duty of the dominant country is to permit the water that does flow across the border to flow in the natural channel of the stream and not to cause the water to flood and damage the land and property of the servient country. The duty of the servient country it to receive the water in the channel and not so divert it, or dam it, as to turn it back onto the lands of the dominant country. As to the Colorado those are the only outstanding duties the United States and Mexico owe each other.