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I am glad you are talking in terms of relativity.
Colonel FERINGA. This is basically a multiple-purpose project. I would say largely navigation; also, flood control, and also power, and if I may go ahead
Mr. DONDERO. On page 6 of the report handed to me, the estimated -cost is $82,265,000.
Colonel FERINGA. That includes the local cooperation feature, and I gave you the Federal cost. Does that answer your question, Mr. Dondero?
Mr. DONDERO. Yes.
Colonel FERINGA. In addition to the navigation features which would be provided by a high dam at River Junction, including power installations, and a high dam at the upper Columbia site, including power installations, and a dam at Fort Benning, lock and dam at Fort Benning, which would be straight navigation, there is proposed a multiple-purpose dam at the Buford site which would provide power; also water for the city of Atlanta, for water conservation; also provide water to improve the low-water flow, replenish the low-water flow of the whole Chattahoochee River and will also furnish a considerable measure of flood control.
Mr. DONDERO. How far is this project from the Tombigbee project, cross country?
Colonel FERINGA. The Tombigbee project is located—here is the lock, which would be the beginning of the Tombigbee project.
Mr. DONDERO. Just roughly.
Mr. Cox asked me a minute ago what would be the effect of this proposal on Albany. We definitely will provide 9-foot depth to Bainbridge, and that depth would progressively decrease until it got to Albany. We now have a channel 3 feet deep to Albany, and just how far the 9-foot depth would go up that way, Mr. Cox, I do not know at this time.
Mr. Cox. It would certainly reach to Newton.
Colonel FERINGA. No, sir. I think it would enrich this part of the country which is very rich from the standpoint of agricultural products, and also benefit the area, in increasing measure, from the standpoint of production.
Mr. DONDERO. Is there anything in your report which might indicate that it would affect the railroads?
Colonel FERINGA. No, sir. I do not believe so, and we have nothing in our report like we did in the Tombigbee. There we gave a definite comparison, but in our present report we did not consider that because I do not believe it will adversely affect the railroads.
Mr. DONDERO. Is this situated in a part of the country where Mr. Cox and Mr. Pace come from?
Colonel FERINGA. Yes, sir.
I might say that I was district engineer at Savannah, Ga., and I am very conversant with this part of the country.
Mr. RANKIN. I would say that so far as people in Georgia are concerned, this 600- to 700-million kilowatts of electricity if furnished, would save the people of Georgia enough to pay for the whole thing. Their overcharges in 1944 were $18,000,000 for electricity in the State of Georgia
So from that standpoint alone, leaving out the navigation, this will рау
for itself. I wish we had one like it in Michigan. Colonel FERINGA. I do not know about the rates, Mr. Rankin, but this project is economically justified.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. Colonel, has there been any opposition offered this project, either in the hearings in the district, or before the Board ?
Colonel FERINGA. I know of no opposition in the hearings in the district, although I cannot say definitely there has been none. I know there was no opposition before the Board.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. This project sets up, I believe, seventythree-million-odd dollars.
Colonel FERINGA. Yes, sir.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. Are these funds required in addition to the funds already authorized in order to deepen the project, or does this include some funds which have heretofore been given?
Colonel FERINGA. This is in addition to the $6,500,000 which was authorized as the first step, but would be exclusive of the amount of money which we previously reported. That was the $66,629,000.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. Are you recommending here that this entire amount be appropriated at present, or are you recommending that certain portions of it be appropriated ?
Colonel FERINGA. We recommend that the entire project be authorized at this time so that an appropriation can subsequently be made as Congress sees fit.
Mr. DONDERO. What is the period of time estimated that would be required to complete this project?
Colonel FERINGA. We could complete this project in 6 years, Mr. Dondero. I do believe, however, that it should be done progressively, depending upon the availability of appropriations, and undoubtedly the first step would be the dam at River Junction, which would be built for navigation and power, because funds to initiate its construction are already in the appropriation bill which we hope the President will sign this morning.
Mr. ANGELL. Colonel, will you give the ratio of cost to benefit? Colonel FERINGA. One as to 1.08 cost to benefit.
The same conservative figuring of benefits has been used as has been used in our other reports.
I have the full description of the project. It reads as follows:
This report is in response to an item in the River and Harbor Act approved March 3, 1925.
Apalachicola River is formed by the junction of Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers at the southwest corner of Georgia and flows south 112.8 miles through Florida to the Gulf of Mexico. The Chattahoochee River rises in the Blue Ridge Mountains in northeast Georgia, and the Flint River has its source near Atlanta, Ga.
Prior to the River and Harbor Act approved March 2, 1945, the Federal navigation project for Apalachicola River, the cut-off, Lee slough and lower Chipola River provided for securing a channel 6 feet deep and 100 feet wide in Apalachicola River by removal of obstructions, dredging and straightening; a channel 5 feet deep and 60 feet wide through the cut-off, Lee slough and lower Chipola River; a depth of 6 feet in the lower 2,500 feet of the River Styx; and provision of a new outlet 6 feet deep for Florida River. At that time the project for Flint River provided for a channel 3 feet deep and 100 feet wide from the mouth to Albany and a channel for light draft steamers at moderate stage thence to Montezuma, 79 miles. Also prior to the act of 1945, the project from Chattahoochee River provided for a channel 4 feet deep and 100 feet wide from the mouth to Columbus to be secured by dredging, removal of obstructions, contraction works, and bank protection. Project dimensions in the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway between New Orleans and the mouth of Apalachicola River, 12 feet deep and 125 to 150 feet wide, have been provided.
By the River and Harbor Act of March 2, 1945, Congress approved a general plan for development of the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee, and Flint Rivers. It provides for ultimately securing by means of these improvements, with dredging cut-offs and contraction works, channels 9 feet deep and 100 feet wide from the mouth of Apalachicola River to Columbus, 7 feet deep and 100 feet wide in Flint River from its mouth to Bainbridge, and 5 feet deep and 100 feet wide thence to Albany. For initiation and partial' accomplishment of the plan, Congress also by the act of March 2, 1945, provided for construction of the Fort Benning and Junction locks and dams of the general plan, supplemented by dredging and contraction works to provide a navigable depth of 6 feet to Columbus and to Bainbridge at an estimated cost for new work of $6,500,000.
In view of the inadequate depths, Flint and Chattahoochee Rivers have carried little commerce in recent years. Commerce on Apalachicola River and its project connecting channels averaged about 350,000 tons annually during these 10 years and in 1943 amounted to 776,100 tons, mostly petroleum products, gravel, logs, and pulpwood. A large part of the 1943 commerce was through traffic on the Intracoastal Waterway section.
Seventy-three counties with a population of about 1,624,000 in 1940 lie wholly or partially within the basin The largest cities, all in Georgia, are Atlanta, 302,300; Macon, 57,900; and Columbus, 53,300. About 70 percent of the area is farm land of which approximately one-half is cultivated. Cotton, peanuts, corn, peaches, pecans, melons, truck crops, and sugarcane are the major crops. Pine and hardwood timber, granite, fuller's earth, bauxite, and ocher are important resources of the area. Major industries include processing of agricultural products, manufacture of textiles, particularly in the northern part of the basin, of lumber and its products, fertilizers, and clay products, production of pulpwood for the use of paper mills along the coast and quarrying and mining of nonmetallic minerals.
Local interests desire that a navigation channel 9 feet deep be provided to Columbus and that certain features of the approved plan for securing that depth be reconsidered. Specifically they suggest that the general plan be modified to provide for a high dam at the Upper Columbia site on Chattahoochee River near mile 50, with pool elevation 190, a navigation lock and a hydroelectric power plant, in substitution for the approved Columbia, Fort Gaines, Florence, and Fort Benning facilities in order to increase the supply of hydro power in the area. The city of Atlanta and local interests in that area urge that a reservoir be constructed above Atlanta to meet a threatened shortage of water for municipal and industrial purposes.
Apalachicola River and its tributaries are subject to frequent floods and there has been at least one instance of loss of life. The initial improvement as provided by the 1945 River and Harbor Act was to provide 6-foot depth to Columbus and Bainbridge, Ga. Under present conditions the Board believes that depths of 6 and 7 feet will be inadequate to serve the needs of prospective commerce and that from the standpoint of usefulness and suitability for economical barge operations a depth of 9 feet is needed.
The Board of Engineers for Rivers and Harbors recommends that the approved general plan for the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee, and Flint Rivers be modified to include the improvements now proposed :
(a) Construction of a lock and dam at the Junction site with upper pool at elevation 77 and a hydroelectric power plant with 27,000 kilowatts of installed capacity.
(0) Construction of a lock and dam at the Upper Columbia site with upper pool at elevation 165 and a hydroelectric power plant with installed capacity of 88,800 kilowatts.
(c) Construction of a lock and dam at the Fort Benning site with upper pool at elevation 190 and without a plant for the generation of hydroelectric power.
(d) Construction of Buford Reservoir on Chattahoochee River, at mile 348.5, with a hydroelectric power plant having an installed capacity of 28,900 kilowatts.
(e) Dredging and channel work on Apalachicola and Chattahoochee Rivers in conjunction with the above improvements.
In addition to the above Federal work, the plan contemplates that the owner will increase the installations at the existing Bartletts Ferry and Goat Rock hydroelectric developments, by 10,100 and 9,800 kilowatts, respectively, and that these plants and the existing Morgan Falls and North Highland plants will be operated for dependable power at 60 percent load factor.
The improvement is recommended subject to the conditions that local interests agree (a) to furnish free of cost to the United States all lands, easements, rights-of-way, and spoil disposal areas, as and when required, for provision and maintenance of the channel in Apalachicola River below Junction Dam; (d) to maintain and operate at their expense all utility and highway facilities which are relocated or otherwise altered as a part of the improvement, and (c) to provide suitable public terminal and transfer facilities open to all on equal terms.
Cost to United States for new work is $73,361,000 exclusive of the $6,500,000 authorized by the 1945 River and Harbor Act.
Annual cost to United States for maintenance and operation is $115,000 in addition to that previously authorized.
The total Federal annual carrying charges, including maintenance and operation, interest and amortization is $3,914,000. Cost to local interest: Terminal facilities.
$285, 000 Increase in power plant facilities---
2, 059, 000
2, 344, 000 Additional cost for operation of power plants..
193, 000 The estimated benefits from the recommended improvements are as follows: Savings in transportation costs_
$933, 000 Flood-control benefits.
100, 000 Power value of the plan--
3, 377, 000 Collateral benefits and increase in land values.
Total benefits ---
4, 460, 000 In addition the improvements would afford recreational opportunities, benefit fish and wildlife conservation and make available an adequate water supply for the Atlanta area. The works now proposed will conform with an effective plan for further development of the water resources of the basin.
Under the proposed plan, the output of firm power at the existing Morgan Falls, Bartletts Ferry, Goat Rock, and North Highlands plants would be increased by an estimated 286,819,000 kilowatt-hours annually of which 240,967,000 kilowatt-hours would consist of secondary energy converted to firm power. For the proposed Buford, Upper Columbia, and Junction plants, the division engineer estimates the annual output at 582,500,000 kilowatt-hours of firm power and 105,556,000 kilowatt-hours of secondary energy. The power which would be made available could be absorbed in the power market about as soon as the developments can be completed.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. Now, Mr. Pace, or Mr. Cox, have you any statements to make ?
STATEMENT OF HON. STEPHEN PACE, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF GEORGIA
Mr. PACE. Aside from the technical aspect of the project, I would like to describe it in this way.
The project now authorized, with an over-all cost of $66,000,000, provides for a series of six dams, beginning at the junction and on up to Columbus and to Albany. The substances of the modification,. and that is all this report is, is a modification of the presently author
ized project, is to take two proposed dams as presently authorized, and make one, at Columbia, Ala., taking three proposed dams and making one, and then leave the other as it is at Fort Benning.
Therefore, the over-all picture of the project is that you take the six dams as presently authorized and provide for three dams. Two of the three will be much larger than now authorized, providing a 9-foot depth, and for power installations.
The Fort Benning Ďam, which will remain a small dam, is not disturbed by this report.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. Fort Benning adjoins the Chattahootchee River?
Mr. PACE. At the present time it is on both sides of the river.
In the over-all project it would remain, and the other five would become two; therefore, there would be three dams under this modification as against the six dams now in the project that is authorized. The initial construction was to be at River Junction, and one at Benning, costing $6,500,000.
Mr. RANKIN. By the change in the dams you save the water power. Mr. PACE. By the change in the dam you do two important things, Mr. Rankin. You gave a depth of 9 feet as against a proposed depth of 6 feet, and you increase your power capacity many fold.
Mr. PETERSON of Georgia. There is one other important thing you do also by changing these dams. You not only authorize 9 feet here, but make it possible to make those channels 12 feet, which is a standard depth of the intercoastal waterway.
Mr. PACE. I agree with you, Mr. Chairman, which is a most important consideration in looking over the long pull.
Mr. DONDERO. What proportion is the power project to the navigation part of the project?
Mr. PACE. On the matter of cost?
The gentleman from Minnesota hit the nail on the head when he said it would open up to navigation this great area here which is now so destitute of adequate transportation facilities. It is my home. My district is all in here. Judge Cox's district is in here. George Andrew's district is in here. In my judgment, with this navigation available, it is destined to become one of the great areas of the Nation.
Mr. DONDERO. I take it then we could persuade you to be for this project.
Mr. PAGE. After very long and profound study, I have concluded that it is a very very fine project.
Mr. RANKIN. Mr. Pace, let me call your attention to another phase of it: The power that this would generate that is now going to waste would electrify every farm in the whole State of Georgia, and there is nothing in God's world you can do for the farms of Georgia, or any other State, that would be of more benefit to them than to provide them with this cheap electricity.