Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

good timber management and on sustained yield. One possibility, of course, would be for the State to vote a bond issue of sufficient size to acquire this property at its fair appraised value. It could then be managed as a State forest. It is possible that the bonds could be retired over a long period of years from the sale of timber products. This is complicated by the fact that funds for administration and protection, and for contribution to the county in lieu of taxes would first have to be set aside from receipts. Frankly, I see little likelihood that the people of Oregon will approve a bond issue of sufficient size to acquire this property.

(4) Federal acquisition for national-forest purposes: As has been said, it is the Federal Government that has raised the issue of disposal of this property. Traditionally, the Federal Government has assumed responsibility for the American Indian. It would seem that primary responsibility for the future management of the property rests with the Federal Government. Federal acquisition and management would seem to be the proper answer to the problem.

This method would insure permanent sustained yield management. Maximum flexibility of management could be had in conjunction with the three national forests adjoining the area, Fremont, Deschutes, and Rogue River. It may well be that the lands could be added to the three existing national forests, thus reducing the cost of administration. It would insure multiple-use management whereby timber, grazing, wildlife, recreation, and water uses could all be developed under a coordinate system. It would protect the small mills in the area in their right to compete for timber.

No doubt the question of taxes from Federal lands will be raised. Actually, I inquired and I was told these tribal lands do not and have not made a payment to the county in lieu of taxes. So far as I know, they now make no specific payment for that purpose. Under nationalforest ownership, 25 percent of the gross receipts are paid to the counties in lieu of taxes. I doubt that private timberland in Klamath County pays as high a property tax as that.

Briefly then, it seems to me that the logical answer to the problem is rather clear. It is the responsibility of the Federal Government to solve this problem and I strongly urge that the timberlands in question be acquired by the Federal Government for national-forest purposes, substantially as proposed in Senator Neuberger's bill, S. 2047, now before the committee.

If you have any questions I will be glad to try to answer them.

Senator NEUBERGER. Thank you so much, Mr. Watts, for coming here today and giving us the benefit of your long experience. Do you have any questions, Mr. Wolf, that you would like to ask Mr. Watts ? Mr. Wolf. Yes, I had one. You spoke of the problem of adminis

WOLF tering a sustained-yield covenant if this proposal advanced by Mr. Weyerhaeuser were adopted. You are familiar with the Simpson Cooperative agreement?

Mr. WATTS. Yes, sir.

Mr. WOLF. You were in the Forest Service when that was negotiated ?

Mr. Watts. Yes. I was in the Forest Service when the bill passed.

Mr. Wolf. To what extent does that agreement effectively provide for sustained yield and what sort of sustained yield on private land? Mr. Watts. It provides for sustained yield on both private and public land managed cooperatively. The type of sustained-yield management, as I recall it-you understand I have been out of the Government for 6 years; it is defined simply as the type of management in effect on the national forest at any given time as they work it over and that makes a rather simple proposal.

Mr. WOLF. In other words, if the Simpson lands were primarily cutover lands, they would have nothing to do but

Mr. WATTS. Hold them.
Mr. WOLF. Hold them the same as you would hold cutover land?
Mr. WATTS. That is correct.

Mr. WOLF. And in the cutting of the timber on their land from the old-growth stands they would cut them as you cut yours?

Mr. Watts. I believe that is what the law provided.

Senator NEUBERGER. Mr. Watts, I was particularly interested to hear your comment briefly on Mr. Weyerhaeuser's proposal, because, of course, you only just heard it as the chairman and the staff only just heard it. But am I to gather this from you: In your experience as former Chief of the Forest Service who made his career in forestry with the Government, do you know of any instance now where there is a requirement by Government that sustained yield be practiced on private forest lands?

Mr. WATTS. No, I do not, and I am inclined to believe that it would be extremely difficult to write into a—to write a reservation in the deed for the property. To me I think it might be quite impossible. That is why we did not include sustained yield in the Pierce bill.

Senator NEUBERGER. And even the Pierce bill with its far lesser restrictions on the private land, if I am not mistaken, failed to pass the Congress or even to reach a vote on the floor of either House.

Mr. WATTS. That is right.

Senator NEUBERGER. And yet the restrictions, and I am glad you have clarified this because I had mentioned the Pierce bill earlier, yet the restrictions proposed in the Pierce bill fell far short of requiring sustained-yield cutting on private timberland.

Mr. Watts. No mention was made of sustained yield. It had solely to do with the type of silviculture you were practicing on the land. Theoretically you could cut it over in 1 year provided you practiced good silviculture under the Pierce bill.

Senator NEUBERGER. In other words, it did not go as far as this proposal that was made by Mr. Weyerhaeuser for control on private sands.

Mr. WATTS. Nowhere near as far.
Senator NEUBERGER. Mr. Wolf has another question.

Mr. WOLF. I would like to ask you one on values since that has been discussed. If we assume that the current value is the one reported in the newspapers, the retail value, the one arrived at by multiplying the timber volume by the current timber prices, do you believe that that price would be the true value of the property if sold on an orderly basis?

Mr. Watts. Well, Mr. Wolf, the answer to your question, first, as I read the law now in effect, it seems to require that it be sold for its

[ocr errors]

liquidation value. The law reads that way to me. It is unthinkable that it would be, but if you require sustained-yield values, sustainedyield-operation value, it would be less than it would be under a liquidation program in my judgment.

Mr. WOLF. And would the value under a liquidation program without sustained yield be lower than the book value obtained by multiplying the current value times timber price?

Mr. WATTS. I think it probably would, Mr. Wolf. I am not an economist or an appraisal expert, as you know, but under any sort of a sale proposal, you have to put up enough timber to last the company, let's say, for 15 years or so before they could afford to build a mill to operate there. And, as a result, there would be some discounting of values for holding it 15 years. There would have to be. I am not an expert in the field, but that is just commonsense, isn't it?

Mr. WOLF. I agree with you.

Senator NEUBERGER. Mr. Watts, as you know, S. 2047 as presently written calls for the Indian lands after purchase by the Government to be added to the holdings of the United States Forest Service. Some criticism was voiced to this particular provision at Klamath Falls. A number of witnesses felt that the lands, if acquired by the Federal Government, should be administered by the Bureau of Land Management rather than by the Forest Service. Would you have any comment at all upon the relative merits of the two agencies with respect to administering this area?

Mr. Watts. I have no wish to criticize the Bureau of Land Management at all. They are doing a good job. I think in this instance it would be much simpler to add it to the national forest. We already have the three national forests adjoining the area in effect. It ought to be simpler for the operator to deal with 1 Federal agency rather than with 2 down there in that country, and it would seem to me to be weighted very heavily in favor of national forest administration.

Senator NEUBERGER. I just want to say for the record, I share with you a very high opinion of the personnel and policies and program of the Bureau of Land Management. There are two reasons that the bill as drafted, and as the Legislative Counsel drafted it at our request, calls for the Forest Service: First, the question of contiguity, which you raised, because it would blend in with the Fremont, Rogue River, and the Deschutes National Forests in that area; and, second, I felt that the Forest Service had had longer experience and more personnel in collateral fields beyond merely timber management, such as watershed protection and wildlife and recreation and so on. For those reasons, the holdings were suggested to be managed by the Forest Service rather than the Bureau of Land Management.

Mr. WATTS. I am in complete agreement with you, but I ought to tell

you that it might be obvious to most anybody that I might have just a little bias.

Senator NEUBERGER. Are there any other questions? Mr. Watts, thank you so much for coming today. We appreciate it.

The next witness will be Mr. William B. Morse, representing the Wildlife Management Institute. Mr. Morse is a resident of Portland. Mr. Morse, glad to have you here.

[blocks in formation]

STATEMENT OF WILLIAM B. MORSE, WESTERN FIELD REPRE

SENTATIVE OF THE WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE

Mr. MORSE. Mr. Chairman, I am William B. Morse, western field representative of the Wildlife Management Institute, a national membership organization devoted to the best management of natural resources in the public interest. The institute is one of the oldest, nonprofit conservation organizations in this country.

We wish to thank you for this opportunity to again go on record on some important conservation aspects of the Klamath Termination Act. We first wish it understood that we firmly believe in the rights of the Klamath Indians. It is their land and if the reservation is terminated, we want the Klamath Indians to receive their just compensation. How this compensation is to be made or administered is beyond our scope of interest, and we leave that to others better qualified to make recommendations. Our concern is with the future of the lands and their renewable resources. We are especially interested in the marshlands of the reservation.

Klamath Marsh is one of the largest of last native deepwater marshes remaining in this country. It is an integral part of the important Klamath Basin waterfowl area. It is a major breeding ground for waterfowl and is important from that standpoint alone. However, its greatest value is as a feeding and resting area for waterfowl on the southern migration.

Visualize the Pacific waterfowl flyway as an hourglass. Birds come from vast areas to the north, and funnel into the Klamath Basin, the narrow portion of the hourglass. After leaving the Klamath Basin, waterfowl again fan out to their ancestral wintering grounds in the central valleys of California. Here they go, not to the large marshes of days gone by, but to a system of refuges and commercial ricefields where these marshes used to be.

Therein lies the importance of the Klamath Basin and Klamath Marsh. Ducks and rice are not compatible and ranchers spend large sums to chase or herd ducks from rice crops. This is effective if there is a place to which the ducks may be safely herded. Until the rice is about half harvested, there is no such place. It is imperative that food and space be provided to hold the birds north an extra 2 weeks, to allow the rice harvest to proceed. Only in this manner can losses to the farmer be made endurable, and the safety of birds in the Pacific flyway insured. Klamath Marsh is an integral part of this management method and we cannot lose 17,000 acres of good marsh, which will probably happen if Klamath passes to private ownership.

Klamath Marsh could be drained and converted to second-rate grazing land. Who can set a value of dollars and cents on this marsh? We know it would be much cheaper to purchase and maintain in its present state than to purchase suitable land elsewhere and develop it for waterfowl. Klamath Marsh is a logical part of the national wildlife refuge system and we believe it should become a part of that system. The important factor is, however, to have the marsh in public ownership when the reservation is terminated. Any method that will accomplish this aim will have the approval of the private conservation organizations of the country.

The management experts tell us that the present termination law will require timber to be sold in small tracts and tend to foster a cut

and-get-out policy. Overcutting timber on these light pumice soils would be disastrous. Erosion and watershed damage would be serious and affect Klamath Marsh and the entire reservation lands. Public ownership seems to be the best answer both for the resource and the economy of the region.

Mr. Chairman, I recently looked at yellow pine logging practices in Arizona on the Aztec lands. Some of these lands, formerly in the national forest, have been completely cut over and slash left as it fell. The results are sickening to one interested in good land management. Other lands there have been cut heavily, but to Forest Service standards. We do not want cut-and-get-out logging on the Klamath Reservation. I have three pictures I would like to give you for the committee files on what yellow pine land looks like after a complete cut, a 60-percent cut, and a 35-percent cut. The subcommittee members can get some idea of how the Klamath lands could look when properly used and when misused.

I also have two pictures of Klamath Marsh I would like to give you for the benefit of those committee members who have had no chance to see the marsh.

We want to thank you for this opportunity to again express our views on the Klamath termination. We urge you to place Klamath Marsh under public ownership and see that the timberlands are safeguarded in much the same manner. Millions of conservationists throughout the country are interested. On their behalf, I wish to thank you for your courtesy.

Here are the pictures I mentioned. I know they can't be in the record, but I thought they would be of interest. The captions are on the backs.

Senator NEUBERGER. Thank you very much, Mr. Morse. The pictures will be listed as exhibits in the committee record, and I will ask Mr. Gamble if it is possible to reproduce them. If it is not, they will at least be cited in the hearing record.

(The five pictures are in the file of the Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs, and are captioned :)

1. Aztec land.—Sitgraves National Forest, Ariz. This land has been cut to leave only 17 percent of the timber but not to exceed 2,000 board feet per acre. Slash will be left lying Photo W. B. Morse, September 16, 1957.

2. Aztec land.—Coconino National Forest, Ariz. This land has been given a 60 percent cut. Logging done by a private company, but trees marked for cutting by the Forest Service. Slash has been piled but not yet burned. Photo W. B. Morse, September 17, 1957.

3. Forest Service land.—Coconino National Forest. This land has received a 35 percent cut under Forest Service standards. Slash has been piled and burned. Photo W. B. Morse, September 17, 1957.

4. Klamath Marsh.Looking to the northwest. Photo W. B. Morse, May 1956. 5. Klamath Marsh.Looking north from railroad grade. Photo W. B. Morse, May 1956.

Senator NEUBERGER. We are trying to avoid some of the things that happened in the Aztec lands. We are familiar with the situation down there. I want to ask you several questions because you are an expert in the field of waterfowl protection and management.

You agree, don't you, with the provision of S. 2047 that would put the marsh under the Fish and Wildlife Service rather than under the Forest Service?

« ZurückWeiter »