Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub
[blocks in formation]

APRIL 30 (calendar day, May 1), 1930.-Ordered to be printed

Mr. Walsh of Montana, from the Committee on Irrigation and

Reclamation, submitted the following

REPORT

[To accompany H. R. 8296)

The Committee on Irrigation and Reclamation, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 8296) to amend the act of May 25, 1926, entitled "An act to adjust water-right charges, to grant certain other relief on the Federal irrigation projects, and for other purposes," having considered the same, report favorably thereon with a recommendation that the bill do pass with the following amendments: On page 1, line, 9, strike out "sums" and insert "sum". Insert at the end of the bill the following: Sec. 2. All contracts with the Government touching the project shall be uniform as to time of payment and charge for the construction of the Saint Mary's diversion.

The conditions giving rise to the bill in its main features are set out in the report of the House committee, as follows:

(House Report No. 119, Seventy-first Congress, second session) The Committee on Irrigation and Reclamation, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 8296) to amend the act of May 25, 1926, entitled “An act to adjust waterright charges, to grant certain other relief on the Federal irrigation projects, and for other purposes," having considered the same, report thereon with a recommendation that it do pass without amendment. In support of this measure there is attached hereto the extended report of the Commissioner of Reclamation to the Secretary of the Interior, together with the favorable letter of the Secretary of the Interior. The condition as to repayment within 20 years has been accepted by the committee.

The necessity for this legislation lies in the fact that the board of survey and adjustment upon whose report the act of May 25, 1926 (44 Stat. L. 636), was enacted, did not complete the work on this division of the Milk River project. It extends to the water users on this project the same benefits as are extended by the act of May 25, 1926, to the water users on other projects.

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,

Washington, January 7, 1930. Hon. Scott LEAVITT,

House of Representatives. MY DEAR MR. LEAVITT: There is transmitted herewith copy of a letter from the Commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation which bears my approval, recommending that charges against certain temporarily unproductive lands in the Chinook division, Milk River project, be suspended, and that charges against certain other areas found to be permanently unproductive be remitted.

In keeping with your request there has been prepared and is herewith transmitted draft of proposed bill authorizing the suspension and remission of these charges. My recommendation is conditioned upon the execution by each district affected of satisfactory contract for repayment of construction charges within 20 years. This I believe to be an important part of this legislation in order to eliminate the controversy which has heretofore arisen concerning the terms of repayment. The committee recently reporting upon this matter recommends that if the concessions recommended are granted by Congress repayment be required within 20 years. Very truly yours,

RAY LYMAN WILBUR.

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,

BUREAU OF RECLAMATION,

Washington, January 6, 1930. The SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR.

Sir: The Chinook division of the Milk River project comprises the river bottom lands beginning about 6 miles west of the town of Chinook and extends easterly about 35 miles down Milk River Valley. The existing canal systems were built with private capital and comprise the following irrigation districts and canal systems with the irrigable areas as shown:

Acres

Acres Alfalfa.

3, 848
Zurich..

9, 494 Fort Belknap

8, 191
Savoy-

11, 307 Harlem..

11, 160 Paradise.

11, 500
Total.----

55, 500 The water supply for these lands is taken from Milk River and prior to the construction of St. Mary Canal was limited to that portion of the natural flow of the river that is junior to the rights of the Fort Belknap Indians, which supply is entirely inadequate to insure profitable crop production. In order to be assured of a full season's supply these irrigation districts either have executed or now have under consideration contracts providing for the payment for a supplemental supply from St. Mary River and Sherburne Lakes Reservoir.

The expenditures thus far made by the United States and the estimated cost to complete St. Mary Canal and appurtenant works amount to $15 per acre, which price has been agreed upon by the United States and the districts and has been fixed by public notice of April 26, 1929, issued to the Harlem irrigation district and payable in 40 semiannual installments as provided in the act of August 13, 1914 (38 Stat. 686), beginning December 31, 1932.

Notwithstanding the favorable terms offered for the payment of the construction cost of St. Mary water, there has been a persistent effort on the part of a small but resistant minority to refuse acceptance of the terms offered and to insist that the time be extended to 40 years instead of 20, the average difference in controversy being 3714 cents per acre per annum. The several investigating boards who have visited Milk River project in recent years have all reached the conclusion that there is no sound basis for granting the extension requested.

At the time that field investigations were made by the board of survey and adjustments in 1925, the irrigable areas on the Malta and Glasgow divisions of Milk River project were classified, but the Chinook division was not considered. Further investigation of the existing conditions made it apparent that the land in the Chinook division should be investigated and a determination made as to the productive, the temporarily unproductive, and the permanently unproductive areas. This investigation was made in September, *1929, with the following results:

[blocks in formation]

The irrigable area for the Chinook division, as determined by the board of survey and adjustments, was 55,500 acres. The tabulation above shown gives a total of 57,542.4 acres, which increase is brought about by additional lands that are now being served by the constructed canals or are susceptible of irrigation by minor extensions of the lateral systems and the form of contract, either executed or under consideration, provides that such areas can be included under the provisions of the repayment contract by notice from the Secretary of the Interior and assessments levied by the district. The Savoy district, comprising an area of 11,307 acres, was not classified for the reason that there is no prospect of this being brought under irrigation in the near future and for that reason it should be carried as land temporarily unproductive.

The area permanently unproductive, amounting to 1,770.17 acres, comprises principally rights of way of new highways that have been constructed and sloughs and other depressions that are subject to overflow and can not be farmed. The temporarily unproductive land, outside of the Savoy district, totals 12,617,64 acres and is made up of land with a heavy gumbo soil that can not be farmed profitably in its present condition but which may eventually, by proper tillage methods, be brought into the productive class. There is also considerable land with a high-water table and affected by seepage so that profitable crops can not be produced. There is a possibility that a considerable portion of this land may be reclaimed by the construction of drainage works.

In view of the policy initiated with the passage of the adjustment act of May 25, 1926 (44 Stat. 636), it is recommended that the Congress be requested to enact the necessary legislation providing the following areas on the Chinook division of the Milk River project be placed in the classes designated and the sums shown be considered as either probable or definite losses to the reclamation fund, with the proviso that the several irrigation districts receive no benefit therefrom until binding contracts shall have been executed by such districts covering the payment of the construction cost of St. Mary storage; and that after the irrigation season of 1930 no water from such storage shall be furnished any district until the required contract has been duly executed.

[blocks in formation]

Draft of proposed bill for this purpose is herewith transmitted, together with letter to Congressman Leavitt, at whose request the bill has been prepared. Respectfully,

Elwood MEAD, Commissioner. Approved January 7, 1930.

RAY LYMAN WILBUR, Secretary.

The amendment recommended by the committee conveys the assurance that any contracts exacted of the irrigation districts within the division of the St. Marys-Milk River project, referred to in the bill, shall be as liberal in their terms as that of those heretofore entered into with the districts within the Malta and Glasgow divisions.

In the upper Chinook division there existed, before the project was inaugurated, vested water rights of very considerable consequence, the water being diverted from the Milk River, the whole constituting a somewhat extensive distribution system. Those interested agreed with the Government to join in the enterprise it was undertaking to secure a supplemental supply of water and contribute a proportionate share of the cost of storage works to be constructed for the irrigation of all lands under the project. At the same time it was arranged that the distribution system then in existence should be expanded to meet the requirements of the added water supply carrying it to lands not theretofore reached, the cost to be met by irrigation district action. This was done through bonds issued by the districts now a lien on the lands, so that the Government was relieved of the construction of such. For the lands in the lower division it provided not only the storage works but the distribution system as well. The work being completed or in process of completion, contracts were entered into with the districts in the lower division providing for payment in 40 years, while contracts were insisted upon with the districts in the upper division providing for payment in 20 years.

Your committee finds no reason for such invidious difference and believes that economic conditions, substantially the same throughout the project, require that all contracts should provide for payment in 40 years, the upper division to pay for the cost of the storage works its proportionate part on an acreage basis.

}

71st CONGRESS

2d Session

SENATE

{

REPOR1 No. 589

ESTABLISHING THE CARLSBAD CAVERNS NATIONAL

PARK, N. MEX.

APRIL 30 (calendar day, May 2), 1930.-Ordered to be printed

Mr. CUTTING, from the Committee on Public Lands and Surveys,

submitted the following

REPORT

(To accompany H, R. 9895)

The Committee on Public Lands and Surveys, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 9895) to establish the Carlsbad Caverns National Park, in the State of New Mexico, and for other purposes, having considered the same, report favorably thereon with the recommendation that the bill do pass with the following amendment:

On page 2, line 19, after the word “Interior" and before the period insert a comma and the following: to include any or all of the following-described lands to wit: Sections 1, 12, and 13, in township 24 south, range 22 east; sections 1 to 18, inclusive, 20 to 28, inclusive, and 33 to 36, inclusive, in township 24 south, range 23 east; the entire township in township 24 south, range 24 east; sections 6, 7, 18, and 19, and 27 to 34, inclusive, in township 24 south, range 25 east; sections 24, 25, 35, and 36, in township 25 south, range 22 east; the entire township in township 25 south, range 23 east; north half of township in township 25 south, range 24 east; sections 5, 6, 7, 8, 17, and 18, in township 25 south, range 25 east; sections 1, 2, 11, 12, 13, and 14, and from 19 to 36, inclusive, in township 26 south, range 22 east; west half of township and sections 22 to 26, inclusive, in township 26 south, range 23 east; all with respect to the New Mexico principal meridian.

The above amendment has the approval of the National Park Service, as set forth in the following letter, under date of April 24, 1930, from the director, Horace M. Albright:

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,

NATIONAL PARK SERVICE,

Washington, April 24, 1930. Hon. GERALD P. NYE, Chairman Committee on Public Lands and Surveys,

United States Senate. MY DEAR SENATOR NYE: As I promised your committee at the hearing on April 23, on H. R. 9895, entitled "An act to establish the Carlsbad Caverns

« ÎnapoiContinuați »