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Senator GOLDWATER. How would this apply, though, when on page 12, line 9, the language states:
The President mayit doesn't say the President shallthe President may authorize the establishment and maintenance of reservoirs, water-conservation works, and other facilities needed in the public interest.
Suppose the President decided that he would not authorize the construction of facilities on a river, let me say, that was within the boundaries of one of these areas, the development of this project being necessary for the maintenance of life farther downstream. What would then be the situation?
Mr. CRAFTS. It is my understanding, Senator, that if the President decided that such water construction works were not in the public interest they would not be permitted in this area in this specific instance unless the Congress by statute directed that it be done.
Senator GOLDWATER. Then section 6, on page 14, actually would be negated by a negative action of the President; is that not true?
Mr. CRAFTS. May I refer that to one of my assistants whom we have here in the room, Senator.
Senator GOLDWATER. Yes, we are very interested in that naturally in the West.
Mr. McARDLE. This is Mr. Florance. Mr. FLORANCE. My name is Reynolds Florance, and I am Director of the Division of Legislative Reporting and Liaison in the Forest Service. Senator Goldwater, the application of State water rights and the question of the right to construct waterworks on w er improvements on Federal lands are two distinct questions. The application of State water laws does not necessarily give to the holder of a water right the privilege of constructing dams or diversionary works on all Federal land. Therefore, insofar as this particular provision is concerned, I think, with the right of the President to refuse to grant permission for construction of waterworks, it does not negate the provision in here which preserves the status quo as to the application of water rights.
Senator GOLDWATER. Yes, but what good are water rights without water?
Mr. FLORANCE. This is a question of course that exists under the present law. The holding of a right to waters that flow from the national forests, for instance, do not give to the holder the right to construct diversionary works on the national forest land, so that that situation would not be changed.
Senator GOLDWATER. We recognize that and as a westerner my concern is that we don't compound the difficulties we now live under by giving the President the right through inaction to further destroy the use of water in the West.
Mr. CRAFTS. Senator Goldwater, I think-to answer your question directly—you have the right, but if the President refused it would not implement the right, so it might compound the difficulties in these particular areas.
Senator GOLDWATER. Let's say that the Forest Service was perfectly willing to allow such a permit to be given to allow the State to use its water rights to get water, but the President would not go along with it. The President could then stop that; is that correct?
Mr. FLORANCE. Oh, yes. The President could review and not approve a recommendation of the Secretary of Agriculture.
The CHAIRMAN. Is it not extremely unlikely that the Secretary of Agriculture would have a different viewpoint from the President of the United States as long as he is serving under him?
Senator GOLDWATER. That might be true, but you know and I know that we negotiate constantly with these gentlemen and with other departments of Government relative to the prospective development of our water systems and many times we have received approval from a bureau that has control over lands to go ahead with plans, and now we have to take into our concern the President who probably won't get in this act until quite a late date.
The CHAIRMAN. I would only say that my belief is that the President would probably accept the recommendation of his Secretary of Agriculture, who in turn would take the recommendation of the Forest Service people, and that you would have them all looking at it in the same light.
Senator GOLDWATER. I hope that the chairman is right. We are not suspect at all of the probable action of the President or Presidents that might come, but men can be of a nature that could give us trouble and we have trouble in the West now living with the Federal Government and water.
Of course, we are very hopeful that this Congress will some day in its wisdom take action to undo the damage that has been done by Supreme Court decisions relative to our water rights in the West. You gentlemen have no control over that, any more control than we have. I did want, though, to make my position clear here that I am concerned lest we might be giving the Federal Government one more way of saying “No” to western water development.
That is all I have.
Senator CARROLL. Mr. Chairman, I want to make an observation here about this water. If they don't clarify this thing in the record this can be the most fatal thing against this bill and I would like to, if I may, go back to this question.
The CHAIRMAN. Yes.
Senator CARROLL. Who has jurisdiction today, and I mean what department, over the Federal powersites that were set up by Theodore Roosevelt some 50 years ago?
Mr. FLORANCE. The powersite withdrawals were made by the Department of the Interior, as I understand it, and I, of course, do not claim to speak for the Department of the Interior, but the development of those powersites by other than the Federal Government would now be licensed by the Federal Power Commission.
Senator CARROLL. Mr. Chairman, just very briefly along the lines suggested by Senator Goldwater, we had a situation where Denver had very valuable water rights and where it desired to build a reservoir on one of these powersites that was set aside. This is what I am thinking about and this is why I have asked the question.
The Federal Government could have stopped that. They could have denied the people of Denver water unless they granted the license and right to build the reservoir. In this bill are we broadening this in any way to put it in the hands of the Secretary of Agriculture, or the Secretary of the Interior!
Can we protect ourselves if the President will not act? May the Congress act itself?
Mr. FLORANCE. Oh, yes. There is nothing in this bill that would take any power from Congress to regulate and control the use of Federal property.
Senator CARROLL. Suppose we had a situation where this bill broadens the wilderness system and this develops 5 or 10 years from now and the Secretary of Agriculture and the President say "We are not going to let you use this water,” but the State says “This is our water and we need it for our people."
"Well, I am sorry, we can't because it interferes with some conservation measure.”
Can the people come to the Congress and the Congress itself act to upset what the Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the Interior and the President himself does ?
Mr. CRAFTS. I think this is very important.
Senator CARROLL. So we don't go home with the idea that we are handcuffed. We can move in this
field and the people can still speak through their legislative branch.
Mr. CRAFTS. There is no question about that, Senator,
The CHAIRMAN. There is nothing in this bill that changes the situation in these water rights, is there? Do you find something in it?
Mr. FLORANCE. No, sir.
Mr. CRAFTS. There is nothing that changes the situation with respect to water rights. It is very clear and specific in the bill.
The CHAIRMAN. I believe you referred to the Blue Range situation, wasn't it, in Colorado?
Senator CARROLL. It would be reservoir 223, where they had that water diversion; where they purchased the water.
The CHAIRMAN. If you would please, Mr. Secretary, have your crew go over this testimony this morning about this, particularly with reference to the case raised by Senator Carroll, and attempt to have them give us a memorandum as to whether or not any provision in S. 174 would change the rights of the city of Denver in any powersite withdrawal it may have in the State of Colorado, unless you care to comment on it now, Mr. Crafts.
Mr. CRAFTS. I think I can answer that. I will try to right now, Senator Anderson.
The CHAIRMAN. Surely.
Mr. CRAFTS. Under a powersite withdrawal now, if the Federal Power Commission decides to issue a license, which it could do against the recommendation of the Secretary of Agriculture should it elect to do so, then even though this were in a wilderness area the development would go forward. If this bill were enacted and the Federal Power Commission wished to issue a license, as I construe it, it could not do so unless the President decided it was in the public interest to do so.
Then the President could authorize the licensing of these works. That is the difference between the two.
The CHAIRMAN. Couldn't Congress also authorize it?
The CHAIRMAN. We couldn't, by this law, limit what a future Congress might do?
Mr. CRAFTS. No, by no means.
Senator CARROLL. I think, Mr. Chairman, that is very important, because this is precisely, what the Federal Power Commission did, issue its license, but I might say, over the objection of some members of the Department of Interior who were in the Fish and Wildlife Service.
You are now saying that this legislation would take away from the Federal Power Commission its authority to issue a license and that we now vest that in the President under this legislation?
Mr. CRAFTS. That is correct.
Senator CARROLL. And, as the able Senator from New Mexico says, we also have this safety valve; we can always come to the Congress and the Congress can do it.
Mr. CRAFTS. That is correct.
The CHAIRMAN. And what he says relates to those areas which are now primitive which are subsequently brought into the wilderness system with the approval of the Secretary of Agriculture, with a subsequent review by the President, and with a final review by the Congress.
Mr. CRAFTS. It applies to the entire wilderness system.
Senator GRUENING. I would like to ask Mr. McArdle if he has a map which includes Alaska. I notice Alaska is not on this
map. We have two very large forest areas, the Tongass, of some 16 million acres, and Chugach of 4.8 million. I wondered if you had prepared any maps which showed what you had planned to do there in the way of withdrawals. I understand you have declared some areas to be wild.
Mr. McARDLE. Senator, I noticed this morning when I got to the office that the map attached to this testimony did not have Alaska in it and I was very much distressed by that, but at any rate, it was too late then to do anything about it.
There are areas in Alaska which are now handled as essentially wilderness areas, although they go by another name. They are called scenic areas. I think most of them are scenic areas. There are the Tracy-Arms-Ford's Terror area, and the Walker Cove area. There are several smaller ones and all of these areas total, as I recall, about 485,000 acres, some of our most scenic country.
Mr. CRAFTS. These are not included in this bill.
Mr. CRAFTS. No, Senator. Alaska is not excluded and neither is Hawaii. But this map does not show areas that we might at some future time recommend for inclusion in the wilderness system. There are no areas on the Alaskan national forest at the present time that are classified as wilderness, wild, or primitive. That is why Alaska is not shown on the map.
There are these two areas of substantial size that are classified as scenic areas, but not in these other classifications.
Senator GRUENING. Could you tell me why the planning of wilderness areas, wild areas, and so forth, has lagged so far behind? We have had these powers for 53 years. Why is there a different ratio of action in Alaska? We are not surprised at all. We are accustomed
to that, but I just wondered why it happened in the case of the Forest Service.
Mr. CRAFTS. I will give you a very honest answer, Senator. The Tracy-Arms-Ford's Terror area, we considered at one time for inclusion as a wilderness or a wild area. I think I am correct that hearings were held on that. There was much opposition locally to the inclusion of such an area in our wilderness category for fear that if it were included and, if this bill were enacted, then mineral development in that area would be prevented. Consequently we established that area as a scenic area rather than as a wilderness area.
Senator GRUENING. Then as a scenic area it would not be a wilderness area; is that correct?
Mr. CRAFTS. That is correct.
Senator GRUENING. It is certainly a very scenic area. I commend your setting that aside along with the Ford's Terror and Walker Cove, but I think, Mr. Chairman, this points to a matter that the Governor of Alaska has called attention to in this telegram which we are going to have included. It is very brief and I would like to read it to make this point. He says:
Re S. 174, State of Alaska is concerned that lacking positive action by the Congress in the form of a concurrent resolution opposing such recommendations, 46 million acres of national forest, parks, monuments, wildlife refuges, and game ranges in Alaska could be committed to the wilderness system by administrative action of the Secretaries of Interior and Agriculture. Request provision that nature and boundaries of area considered for inclusion in the System be subject to cooperative study and classification of the land on the local State level prior to recommendation to the President and to the Congress.
And he urges me to present these views. It seems obvious that the study of what needs to be done in connection with this bill hasn't proceeded as far in Alaska as in older States and therefore I hope that, whether this is included as a provision in the bill or not, that some such study will be made because there are some very remarkable areas that need to be set aside as wilderness areas in which the objection which you mention would not obtain, and I am not aware of any of those hearings.
I think I would know about them if they had been held. Are you sure those hearings were held, because I can't imagine anybody objecting to the withdrawal of Tracy-Arms or Ford's Terror!
Mr. CRAFTS. Yes, Senator there was a hearing.
Senator GRUENING. I think it is clear that a further study needs to be made partly because Alaska is so vast and because so many areas are potentially admissible under this bill.
Mr. McARDLE. Mr. Chairman, perhaps I should clear up one point here for the record and for the legislative history.
Speaking only for the Department of Agriculture, where, under our jurisdiction in Alaska there are 22 million acres of national forest, and not for the Department of the Interior which has a much larger acreage under its jurisdiction, we have not thus far set up any primitive, wild, or wilderness areas on the 22 million acres of national forest.
We have established some areas in Alaska. We have established some scenic areas of fair size, but this bill does not include in the national forest any areas in Alaska. If later, as Senator Gruening sug