Page images
PDF
EPUB

tieth Avenue North, and Twenty-fifth Avenue North, reconstruction of the sewer at South Fifth Street to raise the outlet above the average level of pool No. 14, and extension to the river of the sewer at Thirteenth Avenue North which now discharges into an open ditch 250 feet from the river. It has expressed willingness to furnish necessary rights-of-way.

The district engineer concludes that an equitable measure of the damages caused to Clinton by the operation of pool No. 14 is the cost of remedial works required to eliminate the adverse effect of the pool on the sewers.

His estimate of the cost of the remedial works consists of $141,505 for the first cost of the pumping plants and gated outlets and of initial cleaning of the First Avenue sewer, $62,314 for capitalized annual depreciation of the pumping plants, and $53,951 for capitalization of annual operation and maintenance costs is a total of $257,770. Not included in the above costs is an estimated $1000 for rights-of-way which the city offers to furnish and $76,993 for capitalized annual operation and maintenance costs to be borne by the city. .

The division of the capitalized costs, part to damages and part to the city, is based upon the duration under pool conditions of stages which make pumping necessary as compared with the duration of these stages under open river conditions. The district engineer recommends that the damages that may be caused at Clinton, Iowa, by creation of pool No. 14 be considered as $257,770, subject to certain conditions. The division engineer concurs.

The Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors reports that as near as can be estimated the exact damage that may be caused at Clinton, Iowa, by the creation of pool No. 14 on the Mississippi River is $257.770.

In accordance with existing law a copy of the Chief of Engineers' proposed report was furnished the Governor of Iowa for comment. He stated that the proposal had the official approval of his office.

In accordance with section 4 of the Executive Order No. 9384 the report was submitted to the Bureau of the Budget for information as to the relationship of the proposed report to the program of the President.

The Assistant Director, Bureau of the Budget, in conclusion to his comment of the report stated : * *

I may advise you that since the Chief of Engineers only reports the amount of damage and recommends that in the event funds are appropriated for payment of such damage, he or his designated representative be authorized to make payments under certain conditions, there would be no objection to the submission of the report to Congress.

The Chief of Engineers, after due consideration of the report, concurs in the views of the Board that as near as can be estimated the exact damage that may be caused at Clinton, Iowa, by the creation of pool No. 14 on the Mississippi River is $257,770, and recommends that, in the event funds are appropriated for the purpose of paying such damage, the Chief of Engineers, or such officer as he may designate, be authorized to make payments totaling $257,770 contingent upon the city of Clinton, Iowa, furnishing an agreement satisfactory to the Secretary of the Army, releasing and discharging the United States from any and all past and future claims for damages, heretofore or hereafter sustained by said city and sewer districts therein, by reason

*

*

of, and as a result of, construction of lock and dam 14, Mississippi River, and operation thereof at the maximum pool level presently authorized.

Mr. PICKETT. Colonel, if I understand the situation generally, Federal navigation projects provide for a 9-foot channel on the Mississippi River from the Missouri River to where it enters the Mississippi to Minneapolis?

Colonel MOORE. That is correct, sir,

Mr. PICKETT. In order to provide the water for that depth of channel, you had to build a series of dams across the river; is that right?

Colonel MOORE. That is correct.

Mr. PICKETT. This one dam No. 14 was constructed and is already in operation at a point below the sewer outlet for the city of Clinton, Iowa, which empties into the Mississippi River?

Colonel MOORE. That is correct. Mr. PICKETT. Then, it is my understanding that prior to the construction of the dam, as a part of this Federal navigation project, the city of Clinton had no sewage-disposal problem that would in anywise affect its proper discharge of that sewage into the river; is that correct?

Colonel MOORE. That is not true; sir. They did have a problem at certain river stages. The grades of the sewers are flat and at high stages the flow through those sewers was slowed or halted and solid deposits occurred which necessitated their cleaning by flushing.

Mr. PICKETT. Then the river in its natural condition prior to the construction of this dam 14 did cause the city of Clinton to have some difficulty with sewage disposal?

Colonel MOORE. That is true.

Mr. PICKETT. In your survey of this project and in your recommendations, do you find that the Federal project has enhanced the damage to the sewage disposal? Colonel MOORE. Yes; it has.

Mr. PICKETT. Does your proposal recommend full Federal responsi. bility for all of the damage done or does it just recommend compensation for that portion that is attributable to the Federal project?

Colonel MOORE. It states the damage which in our opinion is attributable to the Federal project.

Mr. PICKETT. And accepts no liability or responsibility for any damage that might have accrued as a result of the river's natural condition before the construction of the Federal dam?

Colonel MOORE. No, it does not.

Mr. PICKETT. Then, as I understand you, since the Federal project has caused an increased difficulty of sewerage disposal there it is reasonable to assume that the city of Clinton might have a proper claim against the Federal Government for that portion of the damage; is that right?

Colonel MOORE. It is not within the province of the Chief of Engineers under this resolution to make any such assumption. The resolution asks us only to determine the amount of such damage.

Mr. PICKETT. I don't want to ask any question that is not within your province to pass on—but under ordinary circumstances by proper resolution that passed the Congress, the city of Clinton might be permitted to sue the Federal Government for an estimated portion of the damage caused by the construction and operation of the Federal project?

Colonel MOORE. It might.

Mr. PICKETT. Then the recommendation here, I take it, is to compensate the city of Clinton for whatever you have estimated to be the Federal responsibility and to help it to remove the difficulties and clear the situation up so as to obviate even the desirability of the introduction of legislation that might lead to a suit between the city of Clinton and the Federal Government.

Colonel MOORE. The Chief of Engineers makes no recommendation either

way. He states the amount of the damage and recommends that if Congress chooses to compensate the city for such damage, that it be done under certain conditions of release.

Mr. PICKETT. If I understand the effect of it then, you have just investigated and reported what you determine to be the facts without recommendation of what disposition Congress might make?

Colonel MOORE. That is correct.

Mr. CUNNINGHAM. Will the gentleman from Texas yield at this point?

I notice on the back of this memorandum furnished the clerk it says that if local interests are compensated for these damages, any payments made will be contingent upon the city of Clinton furnishing an agreement satisfactory to the Secretary of the Army releasing and discharging the United States from any and all past and future claims for damages, and so forth. I believe that really takes care of the situation.

Mr. PICKETT. Then, colonel, if the Congress should act favorably upon this report that has been submitted, and the money should be appropriated to compensate the city of Clinton, the agreement with the Government would in effect obviate any possibility of a suit for damages that might accrue to them in the future.

Colonel MOORE. From the city of Clinton.

Mr. PICKETT. Yes, sir; and would also eliminate any suits for damages that have already occurred.

Colonel MOORE. Yes, sir.

Mr. CUNNINGHAM. This project is located in the district of Congressman Henry Talle, of Iowa. I do not know whether he desires to be heard, but I would like at this point to reserve the right in the record for him to make a statement.

Mr. LARCADE. Congressman Talle had requested the privilege of appearing before the committee, and he was notified in advance of the calling up of this project, but he stated that it was impossible for him to leave his committee, which was in executive session, and without objection, Congressman Talle will be permitted to file a statement for the record. I think in view of the amount involved in this and the interest of Congressman Talle, that he should be permitted to appear prior to our taking up any other project just after adjournment.

Mr. CUNNINGHAM. Thank you very much.

Mr. LARCADE. Are there any other questions by members of the committee?

Mr. CHESNEY. I have a question, Mr. Chairman.

Colonel, if these remedial works are undertaken, as I read in this report, this document says that no local cooperation such as furnishing rights-of-way or maintenance in operation after construction was offered at the original hearing of the engineers. Who is going to bear the brunt of the cost of maintaining these remedial works, the Federal Government or the city of Clinton, Iowa ?

Colonel MOORE. Both, sir. If this money is appropriated, it would amount to a sharing of the cost of operation and maintenance because, included in the total of $257,700, is the amount of $53,951 for capitalized value of annual operation and maintenance costs. However, the total capitalized value of annual operation and maintenance is $76,993 in excess of that. The Federal Government and the city would be sharing in that proportion. That is due to the fact that, as was brought out previously, a problem existed there before and the division of the capitalized annual costs is made on the basis of the duration of pool conditions which make that pumping necessary:

Mr. ČUNNINGHAM. May I ask another question, colonel? Is this legislation originating as a result of a request from the city of Clinton or desire on the part of the Public Works Administration to be fair and compensate the city for damages caused by works of the Federal Government?

Colonel MOORE. I do not know the history of the Senate Commerce Committee resolution, Mr. Cunningham.

Mr. LARCADE. Colonel, has the city of Clinton made any demand or entered any suit against the United States Government through the Secretary of War for the damages stipulated in this project?

Colonel MOORE. Not so far as I know, sir. Mr. LARCADE. Are there any further questions? Mr. Lanham, Mr. Chesney, Mr. Pickett?

Mr. PICKETT. Mr. Chairman, I think it might probably be indicated and emphasized that the report herein submitted was as a result of an investigation made on the authorization of the Senate Document No. 197 of the Eightieth Congress, second session; is that correct?

Colonel MOORE. The document which you quote, Mr. Pickett, is the report. The resolution under which the report was rendered was adopted September 22, 1944, by the Committee on Commerce of the United States Senate and it is a review of House Document No. 137, Seventy-second Congress, and general reports which cover the general plans for the upper Mississippi River system.

Mr. LARCADE. Thank you, Colonel.

Now, following my previous question, the relief sought in this bill is only the relief that the city of Clinton can obtain for these damages except by suit against the Federal Government?

Colonel MOORE. I believe that is correct, sir.

Mr. LARCADE. If there are no further questions from any member, I believe that completes the hearing on this project.

We will now take up the next item on the agenda, which is Chocolate Bayou and Bastrop Bayou, Tex.

You may proceed, Colonel.

CHOCOLATE BAYOU AND BASTROP BAYOU, TEX.

(H. Doc. No. 768, 80th Cong.)

Colonel MOORE. Mr. Chairman, the report on Chocolate Bayou and Bastrop Bayou, Tex., as published in House Document No. 768, Eightieth Congress, is in response to a resolution adopted on February 28, 1945, by the Committee on Rivers and Harbors of the House of Representatives. The resolution requests the Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors to review the reports on Chocolate and Bastrop Bayous, Tex., submitted in House Document No. 337, Seventy-sixth Congress, first session, with a view to determining if the recommendations in said document should be modified or adhered to, and also with a view to determining whether these bayous should be abandoned as navigable waterways of the United States.

Chocolate and Bastrop Bayous are small parallel coastal streams in Brazoria County, Tex. They flow southeast and empty into Chocolate and Bastrop Bays, respectively, from which other bays lead to the Gulf of Mexico. Chocolate Bay is about 26 miles southwest of Galveston, Tex., and Bastrop Bay is 4 miles farther southwest.

The federally improved Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, 12 feet deep, which parallels the coast, crosses Chocolate Bay 5.6 miles gulfward of the mouth of Chocolate Bayou and Bastrop Bayou near its mouth. Formerly an inland waterway 5 feet deep paralleled the coast nearer the Gulf, but it is not now maintained. Federal projects adopted in 1907 provided for dredging channels 4 feet deep from that former waterway across the bays to 4-foot depths in the two bayous.

In accordance with the recommendation of the Chief of Engineers in the report under review, which was prepared in 1939, the project for Chocolate Bayou was modified by the River and Harbor Act of March 2, 1945, so that it now provides for a channel 6 feet deep and 60 feet wide extending from the Intracoastal Waterway just west of Chocolate Bay by land cut 4.8 miles long to Chocolate Bayou 0.3 mile above its mouth and thence in the bayou to a point, near Liverpool, Tex., 13.7 miles above the bayou mouth. This authorized work has not yet been undertaken. In the report under review, the Chief of Engineers also recommended that the project for Bastrop Bayou be modified to provide for a channel 6 feet deep and 60 feet wide from the Intracoastal Waterway by land cut 1 mile long to the bayou 3.8 miles above its mouth and thence in the bayou to a point 10.5 miles above the mouth. However, that modification has not been authorized, and the existing project for Bastrop Bayou is that adopted in 1907.

Certain local interests desire provision of channels 6 feet deep and 60 feet wide, for navigation and drainage, from the Intracoastal Waterway to the vicinity of Liverpool in Chocolate Bayou and to deep water in Bastrop Bayou. Water users oppose such improvements, contending that the resulting salt-water intrusion would be harmful to rice irrigation and sulfur mining. For the same reason, they oppose land cuts between the Intracoastal Waterway and the bayous which would shorten the distance that salt water would have to travel to reach the diversion pumps. Inclusion of salt-water barrier gates above the heads of the improved sections, so designed as to permit occasional passage of navigation, would not be entirely satisfactory to water users. Navigation and drainage interests also offer some objection

« PreviousContinue »