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you their testimony, I know, in the best possible manner to justify the appropriation request which the budget has allowed.

I want, first, to introduce my old friend, E. C. Myrland, a State senator of Iowa. Mr. Myrland is here representing the people in Harrison and Onawa Counties, and also the Governor of Iowa.

Mr. JENSEN. And a letter also from the county supervisor of Harrison and Monona Counties.

Mr. Myrland testified before this committee on this same item in 1951. While I presume his testimony will to some degree be similar to that which he previously gave, perhaps exactly similar to that which he gave in 1951, nevertheless he does want to appear again because he has been delegated by the Governor and his county supervisors.

Then we have with us on the Iowa side of the river Mr. Christensen. I think this is the third time he has been here to testify on this item. Mr. Christensen lives at Council Bluffs, where there is quite an erosion problem.

We also have with us Mr. Rogers of Council Bluffs and Mr. Benson, representing the city of Sioux City. As you know, they have quite a problem there, which you folks saw while you were in that vicinity.

The other men that I shall introduce are Mr. Bob Brooks, consulting engineer, who you know, and Mr. Sykes, a gentleman who is also interested in the bridge, a representative of one of the firms that did the financing of the bridge.

I think that completes the group that I am to introduce. I shall not go further except to say that, of course, I am greatly interested in the committee recommending this item of $2 million for channel banks and erosion control from Sioux City to Omaha. Because of the fact that there are several places along that river that certainly need attention and bank stabilization, I respectfully request that the item in the bill not be earmarked for any particular place along the river, but that the matter be worked out between the people interested along the river, from Sioux City to Omaha, with the Army engineers at Omaha.

With that, Mr. Chairman, I shall ask to be excused. If there is at any time anything I can be of service of to you and your committee in furnishing such information as you might need or would like to have, that I am in a position to give, please call on me.

Thank you. Mr. Davis. I am sure you do not need to explain to anyone sitting in this room the necessity of your being present to preside as chairman of the Subcommittee on Interior Appropriations.

We will assure you that these folks that you have brought here will have an opportunity to present their information and their point of view to the subcommittee.

Mr. JENSEN. Thank you.

Mr. Davis. Senator Myrland, we will be glad to have such presentation as you may wish to make. I believe Mr. Jensen told us that you are here not only representing some of the folks out there but officially as a representative of the Governor of Iowa?

Mr. MYRLAND. That is right. I am E. C. Myrland, State senator from Iowa. I have a letter from the Governor authorizing me to represent the State of Iowa, which I would like to submit for the record.

Mr. Davis. That will be made a part of the record at this point. (The matter referred to follows:)

UNITED STATES SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,

Civil Functions Subcommittee, Washington, D. C. GENTLEMEN: This letter will introduce the Honorable E. C. Myrland, of the 34th senatorial district of Iowa.

Senator Myrland is very conversant with conditions in the Little Sioux area in Iowa, and I am pleased to designate him as the official representative of the State of Iowa. Very truly yours,

Wm. S. BEARDSLEY, Governor. Mr. MYRLAND. I have a written statement which I would like to submit for the record; and would like the opportunity to speak extemporaneously for a few minutes.

Mr. Davis. That is fine.
(The material referred to follows:)

Gentlemen, I am E. C. Myrland, State senator, representing the 34th senatorial district of Iowa. I have a letter authorizing me to represent William Beardsley, the Governor of Iowa. I also have resolutions from the Boards of Supervisors of Monona and Harrison Counties authorizing me to represent them before this committee. Two of the counties, Monona and Harrison, which I represent are bordered on the west hy the Missouri River and that is one of the reasons why I am particularly interested in the appropriations that this committee will recommend. Besides that, I am a landowner in the county of Monona and have a farm (located about 6 miles from the Missouri River) which I have owned since 1920. I have lived in and around Onawa since 1909, so feel qualified to testify on the history and the status of the Missouri River from 1909 to the present time.

Previous to any Government program concerning the Missouri River, the river had established its own course and was rather stable. Sometime in the 1930's the Congress passed a bill to stabilize the Missouri River with instructions to the Army engineers to set up the plans and specifications. The Army engineers complied with these orders and the plans and specifications as set up by the Army engineers were approved by your Congress and money appropriated to go ahead with the work. The work progressed smoothly and it is my information the work was about 75 percent complete between Omaha and Sioux City on the Missouri River when World War II started. Necessarily, all work of this kind had to be ahandoned for the duration of the war. As a result, practically all the work completed, particularly in regard to channel diversion and flood control, has been destroyed.

From 1981, up until 1943, the Missouri River between Sioux City, Iowa, and Omaha, Nebr., had never flooded over the high bank of the river, and I am sure that during those years there must have been several times in which high volumes of water had to come down the Missouri River. Since 1943, the Missouri River has been over the high bank and flooded this area three times. The last time in 1952, and I am sure all of you are familiar with the devastation and flood damaye that occurred in our area from that flood.

Now, in my opinion, there is a sound reason for this condition. In the plan submitted by the Army engineers and approved by your Congress were several channel diversions in all of the area from Sioux City, Iowa to Omaha, Nebr. In the plan of the Army engineers, as approved by your Congress, the Missouri River was to be stabilized according to these channel diversions and this would establish the permanent course of the Missouri River through the area between Sioux City, Iowa and Omaha, Nebr. The work was sufficiently completed so the river was occupying the proposed channel, and I am sure if it had not been for World War II, which hindered the completion of construction of the project, that the Missouri River would now be flowing in the channel as prescribed by the plan of the Army engineers and approved by your Congress.

When the war began, your Congress deemed it necessary to stop all appropriations for projects of this kind, with the result that even maintenance appropriations were not available. The result of this, which would be true of any partially constructed project, was that work which had already been done began to deteriorate and was broken through here and there until practically all of the structures are now gone. The Missouri River now runs wild between Sioux City, Iowa and Omaha, Nebr. The damage from three floods and the amount of land eroded into the Missouri River is beyond comprehension. I could go into detail and give you an estimate of the amount of damage in money, but I am sure that the information is available to you in more accurate form than it is possible for me to compile. The Missouri River is doing, and will continue to do, more damage to the area between Sioux City, Iowa and Omaha, Nebr. than was ever done in a period before the stabilization program was started.

This is a tragic picture and it would seem that most of the money spent on the Missouri River between Sioux City and Omaha up to this point has been wasted. The question that is now presented is what to do about it. We all make mistakes, and the only decision to be made is whether or not we can rectify our mistakes. In my opinion, the failure to complete and maintain the work done on the Missouri River between Sioux City, Iowa and Omaha, Nebr., according to the plans and specifications of the Army engineers and approved by your Congress, was unavoidable, due to World War II, but also in my opinion, since it has been 8 years since the end of the war, we have been inefficient by delaying our action to do something about this problem. Possibly we locally have failed to present the facts to your Honorable Body in the right way. I know it is impossible for Members of Congress to be entirely familiar with projects of this kind all over the United States, and the obligation to bring them to your attention is our local responsibility.

I am informed that there is a fear on the part of some Members of Congress that to stabilize the Missouri River between Sioux City, Iowa and Omaha, Nebr., according to the plans and specifications as set up by the Army engineers and approved by your Congress, would be to appropriate Federal money for the advantage of private interest. This is incidental and amounts to nothing more than the benefits to private interests on the spending of any public money any place for the benefit of the public. We realize that most of this criticism comes from the national publicity we have received because of the dryland Decatur Bridge. But bear in mind that this bridge is located exactly where the Army engineers specified and will span the Missouri River whenever the Missouri River is stabilized according to the original plan of the Army engineers and approved by your Congress. We are sorry if this bridge has had any influence in the delay of appropriations for the completion of the Missouri Rvier stabilization program, but feel we are in no way to blame, and we assure you that it plays no part in our overall anxious desire for the completion of the Missouri River stabilization program.

The people I represent, namely the people of Iowa, and particularly the people of Monona and Harrison Counties, who border on the Missouri River, are pleading with Congress to complete the Missouri River stabilization program between Sioux City, Iowa and Omaha, Nebr. We are not asking you to appropriate any specified sum of money. We are asking you to appropriate whatever money it will take to do the complete job in the shortest time possible. To delay longer is wasting more money and every time the stabilization program is delayed a year, the loss to the local community and the State of Iowa and to the Federal Govern. ment is more than the cost of completing the stabilization program.

Right this minute, grade A land is being eroded into the Missouri River. Bear in mind that this is topnotch grade A land, and the supply of this kind of land in the United States is limited. Everyone qualified to predict makes the statement that in the very near future, the demand for food will require every available source of production that is available in the United States. Of course, it is costly and sometimes tragic for an individual to lose his farm, but the long-range loss to our country is the important fact to bear in mind.

I am sure you will base your decision in the matter of completing the Missouri River stabilization program on whether or not it will justify the spending of Federal money for the long-range economic investment. This would be the sound and practical approach to this problem.

In my opinion, you are merely investing Federal money which belongs to all of us. I doubt if there is a project under your consideration at this time that will produce and continue to produce so much return for the money invested. This stabilization program will protect the Missouri River area from Sioux City, Iowa to Omaha, Nebr., against erosion and flood damage, and will help to preserve for posterity one of the richest sources of food supply in the United States.

In conclusion, I have tried to present the facts concerning the completion of the Missouri River stabilization program between Sioux City, Iowa, and Omaha, Nebr. I am sure every statement that I have made will bear investigation. If there is any further information you require to make your decision, I will be glad to supply such information if at all possible. I am sure if we locally can make the real true facts available to you so that you may understand the Missouri River stabilization program between Sioux City, Iowa, and Omaha, Nebr., as it really exists, you will be glad to recommend the necessary appropriations for the completion of this project at the earliest date possible.

Mr. MYRLAND. I represent this 34th District in Iowa. This comprises three counties. Two of these counties, Harrison and Monona, have the Missouri River for their west border, a distance of about 80 to 85 miles.

I also have resolutions from the board of supervisors in these two counties authorizing me to act for them. Whether or not you want these to appear in the record, I do not know, but I will be glad to furnish them. It authorizes me to be their representative in any action that happens from my standpoint.

Mr. Davis. I think your statement with respect to that will suffice for the record, Senator.

Mr. MYRLAND. I have lived in Monona County since 1909 and naturally I have had a lot of opportunity to observe the Missouri River during those years, both before and after the beginning of the river stabilization program. I feel I should know something about the river. From 1881 to 1943 the Missouri River never came over the high bank in flood stage. Since 1943 it has been over the high bank three times, and the last time was in 1952. I think all of you are familiar with the devastation that was caused by the 1952 flood.

I think there is a sound reason for that. When the stabilization program started in the thirties—I do not remember the exact yearand was going on smoothly and was about 75 percent completed when World War II started, it was necessary then to abandon all appropriations of this kind and that project was left without completion and without maintenance.

It so happens that in the area bordering these two counties, in the flood-control and river-diversion plan there was a lot of river-channel diversion; consequently, the river had to be redesigned quite a bit in that area, with the result that, the work being 75 percent complete, the water was occupying the proposed new channel. Then, with the abandonment of appropriations for completion and maintenance, the river started to tear down this work, and in 1943 it came through the first time and in 1949 it came through again, and in 1952 it took them all out and came over the high bank all the way down. So that work was practically destroyed.

There is a lot of bank-control work that is still there, but as far as channel diversion goes, it is practically extinct at this moment. I think that the river is now worse, by breaking down the river-channel diversion, and more dangerous than previous to the time when any work began, because at that time it had established the lazy channel.

Nobody was to blame for the appropriation being stopped on account of the war, but since the war it has been 8 years and it seems to me that we for some reason have been very lax in completing the program. I do not believe there is much excuse since the war not to have completed or taken care of the program. The program must be sound because I know the Engineers spent ample time designing, the plan and specifications that they designed have been approved by Congress, and apparently it has the go-ahead sign and is a sound plan.

Congressman Harrison mentioned the bridge. I understand there is a feeling on the part of some Congressmen that to put water under that bridge would be appropriating public money for private interests. That is absolutely not true. The bridge was placed where the engineers designed and specified it should be. When the river was occupying the diverted channel, it was right under the bridge and will be again whenever the stabilization program is completed.

This bridge is financed by revenue bonds. The charter of the bridge even specifies the amount of toll. It specifies the interest shall be paid out of the revenue of the bridge, that the bonds should be retired within a certain number of years, and that when the bonds and debts are paid off it will become a joint free bridge, owned and maintained, half and half, by the States of Nebraska and Iowa. It will be a free public bridge. So nobody will make any money out of the bridge.

As a sidelight, Onawa is exactly 8 miles opposite Decatur, and to get from Onawa to Decatur now you have to drive 80 miles. We in that area think it is necessary and reasonable to have a bridge at least every 40 miles crossing a river comparable to the Missouri River.

This river-stabilization program, if it is sound, and I think it is well established that it is sound, in my opinion ought to be completed as fast as possible. Every time that we spend $1 million we only delay the completion. We accomplish hardly any good. So, if you as Congressmen decide that this program is sound, we at home and from Iowa want you to try to complete the project as soon as possible, not just dab around here and there, but complete it, because in the last 10 years it has cost the local interests in the State of Iowa, and the Federal Government more than the amount of money it would require to complete the stabilization program. There is no reason but what to expect that in the next 10 years the same thing will happen again. We are really paying for the completion of the stabilization program whether we do it or do not do it.

In our opinion, it is an investment in the preservation of the best land in the United States. I know it is tragic to an owner when his land goes into the river, but the long-range loss of that land is what we have to worry about. The grade A land is lost to the productivity of this country from then on. The bad loss is the long-range loss.

We, representing the State of Iowa, urge you to appropriate sufficient money to the program so that the engineers can create and complete as much construction as is efficiently possible to complete the work in the shortest possible time.

We think this is a sound investment of money. I do not think you have under consideration a project in the United States which will guaranty you a faster and more adequate return on the spending of public money. I think that concludes all I have to say. I appreciate the opportunity to appear here.

I sympathize with you. I play your role once in a while in the minor league. I appreciate the opportunity of appearing.

Mr. Davis. Thank you for your very fine statement and very concise statement, Senator.

Mr. Christensen, I believe we are ready for you.

Mr. CHRISTENSEN. I want to say at the outset that I can say amen to Mr. Myrland's statement. He took some of my fire.

My name is Lawrence Christensen. I am a farmer living 4% miles southwest of Sergeant Bluff, Iowa. I operate a 540-acre farm adjoining the Missouri River.

I have been asked by neighbors to again visit with your committee in regard to bank-erosion problems that we have in our stretch of the

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