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Mr. Hicks. A shipper in Alameda, then, will be on exactly the same footing for his smaller consignment that the larger shipper, or shipment of freight is in San Francisco.
Mr. LAWRENCE. Of course, he has to send and get his smaller consignment. Mr. Hicks. You mean in Alameda ? Mr. LAWRENCE. In Oakland.
Mr. Hicks. But the charge across the bay will be absorbed in the through rate charge ?
Mr. LAWRENCE. Yes. Does that answer the question?
Mayor Otis. Mr. Lawrence, you are in the shipping business, are you ?
Mr. LAWRENCE. Yes, I am a warehouseman and shipper and steamship agent, and pretty nearly everything else. Mayor OTIS. Are there any further questions?
Otis * Mr. PADGETT. I think not. Senator Ball. Has the committee any further questions? Mr. CAINE. I would like to have Mr. Wilhelm say another word. He wants to give you another figure on the water.
The owners of that particular shipment would get quicker delivery here than they do across the bay. The cars all have to be taken across by car ferry or sent around by the Dumbarton Cut-off. It is 65 miles from Oakland to San Francisco by the Dumbarton Cut-off, and there is often a delay of from three to four days in receiving a car from the other side.
Mr. LAWRENCE. May I illustrate that point further? A shipment loaded in Oakland will probably be shipped to-morrow morning. From San Francisco it would take from three to five days to get here. You are waiting for an answer to the question of switching rates, I think.
Mr. CAINE. Yes.
Mr. CAINE. Mr. Lawrence has had a great deal of experience, and I think is competent to answer it.
Senator Ball. The question was Senator Walsh's question. Will you state the question again?
Senator Walsh. What advantage, if any, in the matter of freight rates has Alameda over San Francisco, or the Alameda site over the Hunters Point site?
Mr. LAWRENCE. On the railways ?
Mr. COLE. Is there a switching charge upon the other side ? It has been stated here that there was a switching charge upon that side of the bay that does not exist here. Is that the fact?
Mr. LAWRENCE. Just at this moment there is a switching charge from the docks in San Francisco to industries in South San Francisco, a charge of 37 cents a ton. The railroad commission within the past three or four weeks ruled that there was discrimination as between the two points-that is, between Oakland and South San Francisco. I think the commission has a hearing on December 10, at which hearing that differential will be wiped out. Either the rates will be raised on the one side or reduced on the other side to equalize it. Mr. PADGETT. You have quicker delivery of your rail freight? Mr. LAWRENCE. Quicker delivery, from one to five days. Mayor Otis. Is there something further?
Senator BALL. Mr. Lawrence, one more question. Freight destined over the Dumbarton Bridge or cut-off to San Francisco travels how far--how much farther than freight from the East destined to Alameda ?
Mr. LAWRENCE. Seventy-one miles.
Senator Ball. Do those through freight trains go through Oakland ?
Mr. LAWRENCE. Not all of them; no.
Mr. LAWRENCE. From the north from Sacramento and Oregon points, for instance—they can go either way. .
Senator Ball. Let us take the Southern Pacific, take the San Joaquin Valley.
Mr. LAWRENCE. San Joaquin Valley would go via Niles, and there is a difference of about between 40 and 50 miles.
Senator BALL. That is, farther to San Francisco than to Alameda ?
Senator Walsh. Are we to understand, then, that it takes from one to five days to travel 71 miles ?
Mr. LAWRENCE. From a point in Oakland to a point in San Francisco, yes-switching and all, a carload at the docks in San Francisco has to be handled by the Belt Line, a separate corporation, incorporated by the harbor commission. They are sometimes very much congested there, and some nights the day switching is not being done during that night.
Senator BALL. Then, the delay arises chiefly at the San Francisco terminal rather than en route ?
Mr. LAWRENCE. Yes. It is not so much delay in the through transportation, but delay in switching at the terminal points.
Mr. CAINE. Í think one of the admirals suggested that Mr. Wilhelm make a statement on the cost of water on the basis of 2,000,000 gallons a day. With your permission, I would like to have him make that statement.
Mr. WILHELM. The present rate would be 19 cents per hundred cubic feet, or 25 cents per thousand gallons.
Senator BALL. Thank you.
Mr. CAINE. Then, on the question of power, I am informed that the Great Western Power Co.'s rate at Goat Island is 1.75 cents per
kilowatt hour, and the Pacific Gas & Electric Co.'s rate at Mare Island is 1.7 cents per hour. And, Mr. Chairman, if you will permit me, I would like to call attention to the fact that the ultimate development of water in any of these cities has not yet been arrived at: San Francisco is working on the Hetch Hetchy project, and we on this side of the bay are trying to get together on a project which contemplates either going in with San Francisco on the Hetch Hetchy project or bringing a supply from the Eel River in Sonoma County or north of Sonoma County. The grant of the Government to San Francisco of the right to Hetch Hetchy provides that these cities on this side of the bay may participate in that water if we so desire. The situation regarding water is unsatisfactory; we realize it. It is unsatisfactory here and in San Francisco, and unsatisfactory at Mare Island. We are all in a bad boat, but we are all in the same sort of a boat, and it is a problem that has to be worked out. We feel that we are in as good a position as any other community in solving that question.
Mayor Otis. I beg leave to state, gentlemen, that I sent only a little while ago a full copy of what is known as the Harroun report on the water question to the department at Washington, and received a letter from Admiral Rousseau that they had all the data which they required on that particular subject.
Are there any more questions to be asked, Senator?
Mr. COLE. If you are finished, gentlemen, Mr. Watkins would like to take a photograph.
Senator Ball. (After the taking of the photograph.) The hearing will stand adjourned.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY NAVAL BASE SITES.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 1920
SPECIAL JOINT COMMITTEE OF CONGRESS,
Mare Island, Calif.
SITE AT MARE ISLAND, CALIF. A hearing before the Special Joint Committee of Congress on Pacific Coast Naval Bases was held at the navy yard, Mare Island, Calif., on November 18, 1920, commencing at the hour of 11 o'clock
There were present the following members of the committee: Senators L. Heisler Ball, Henry W. Keyes; Representatives Fred A. Britten, Frederick C. Hicks, A. E. B. Stephens, L. P. Padgett, and Daniel J. Riordan; together with W. M. Coffin, secretary of the committee.
There were also present naval officers: Rear Admiral C. W. Parks, chief of the Bureau of Yards and Docks; Admiral R. E. Coontz, chief of naval operations; Rear Admiral W. L. Capps, of the Navy Department; Lieut. Commander H. W. Hill, aide to Admiral Coontz.
There were also present representative of the interests of the Mare Island site, Charles F. Curry, Representative in Congress from the third district, California; James Roney, mayor of Vallejo; Capt. Edward L. Beach, commandant of the Mare Island Navy Yard; Commander Cox, chief engineer officer of the yard; Capt. Gleason, exconstructor of the yard; Capt. T. M. Potts, United States Navy, retired; Capt. J. M. Ellicott, United States Navy, retired; Dr. James J. Hogan, president of the Vallejo Chamber of Commerce; and Frank R. Þevlin, of Vallejo, member of the California State Railroad Commission, and others.
The hearing was presided over by Senator Ball, chairman of the joint committee, Representative Curry acting as spokesman for those representative of the interests of Mare Island, and the following proceedings were had:
Senator Ball. We are ready to proceed with the hearing, gentlemen.
Cap t. BEACH. Gentlemen, Senator Ball has announced that the committee is ready to hear the evidence that we have to offer on behalf of the Mare Island site proposed for a naval base, and I will ask everybody present to kindly keep quiet. I have a written statement, Senator Ball, that I wish to present to you, and, in order that there may be no delay, I have had copies made, and I thought of
. giving each member of the committee two copies of this statement.
Mr. CURRY. May I have one of those copies, please ?
Senator BALL. I think, gentlemen, it is the consensus of opinion of the committee that we had better have the statement presented by Capt. Beach without interruption. And that will be the proceeding Then we can ask him questions after he has concluded, if anyone desires to ask questions.
Mr. CURRY. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the committee, the availabiltiy and desirability of Mare Island as a naval base will be presented to the committee to-day by Capt. Beach, the commandant of the yard; by Capt. Cox, chief engineer officer; by Capt. Gleason, ex-constructor of the yard, who built the California; by Mr. Howard C. Holmes, one of the best engineers in private practice in the State, who had, for a number of years, been the chief engineer of the Board of State Harbor Commissioners, and who built the dry dock at Hunters Point; also by Hon. James Roney, the mayor of Vallejo, who for 40 years had been an employee of the yard and for 30 years of that time an officer of the yard, until he resigned to accept the position of mayor of the city of Vallejo; and by Capt. Potts, United States Navy, retired.
The first gentleman to address the commission will be Capt. Edward L. Beach, and I will ask, and I understand it meets with the approval of the committee, that Capt. Beach be permitted to present his arguments in full before any questions are asked of him. I believe it will expedite the hearing and will be of benefit to the committee. You have each of you a copy of his statement before you, and you can make any memorandums you wish and ask any questions you desire after he has completed his argument in full. And I ask it, as a personal request, that he be permitted to proceed in full before any questions are asked of him by the committee. Gentlemen, I present Capt. Beach.
Capt. EDWARD L. BEACH. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, in some of this there may be typewritten errors. I have had no opportunịty of going over it and checking them up. I notice several already.
This navy yard was established in 1854, 66 years ago, with Commander David G. Farragut as the first commandant. It has grown constantly in its capacity for work and in its service to the Navy Department, but more especially in the last four years, since the navy yard's capabilities were carefully studied by what is known as the Helm Board. This Helm Board made a careful study of the needs for a great naval base on the Pacific, and of what place was best suited to be this base. The Helm Board report, which is a public document, No. 1946, Part II, 1917, contains more careful study of Mare Island's advantages and disadvantages than any other single document. I therefore refer to this report because it has made a particular study of Mare Island's disadvantages, and it is not believed that there can be any criticisms of Mare Island that are not found in this report.
The proposition is that the Carquinez Straits station as conceived and designed by Commander Cox, which is Mare Island, is not suited to greater development and is therefore not available as the site for the great
naval base. It is reasonable to believe that the Government officials who picked out Mare Island in 1854 as the Pacific coast navy yard considered different available sites, and that Mare Island was best suited then for the purpose. Sixty-six years later, by an act of Congress, a study is to be made as to which is the best site for a great base-Carquinez Straits, Alameda, or Hunters Point. If Mare