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Indian member? We fail to feel that such a program should be instituted in view of that we still would be the underdog.
Now, we know and we realize that this bill is intended to make a search of possible materials, possible outs in which something could be worked out that would not only provide for the protection of the timber and timberlands of the Klamath Tribe, but would also result in the protection of the best welfare of the membership of the Klamath Tribe. And we think that as the work progresses in attempting to work out this Federal acquisition that provisions for the guardianship, trusteeship of our membership should be spelled out in any law that is passed. By that I mean if Federal purchase is our answer,
think that it is well that some standards of protection be set up in any Federal purchase that would go to the extent of protecting those people that we hope to protect? And by that I mean the enrolled membership of the minors, the enrolled membership of the minors and incompetents are in the majority. There are over half of our enrolled membership that are in such a class.
Now, the other factor that crops in mind is that we have approached the State and have asked as to what position they would take in the matter of this sudden transfer. Years back I had taken the matter up, we had taken the matter up with the Governor and were advised that they on their part for the State had not in any way concerned itself into the problems and welfare of the Indians, especially the members of the Klamath Tribe. Since we had not been a burden to the State, but rather had contributed to the economy of the State as well as the Klamath Basin. And we think that such, the economic standards as have been set up in the past should be continued; and the only thing, and the only measures that would take care of such continuity would be, we believe, through Federal purchase.
We think that at the moment that the trust management plan is rather in a cumbersome status and would require considerable time before it would be ably presented and explained to our people.
And the other though, although required by law, that immediately upon the completion of the appraisal report and approved by the Secretary, the Management Specialists are authorized to give to each enrolled member the opportunity to elect for himself or members of his family. Now, I am inclined to be I will have to admit that I am rather confused, for this reason: The move to elect, I believe, should not be done until all ways and means of your move to provide for Federal acquisition has been exhausted. If you fail, then I think it would be high time for us to make the election that is provided under the law.
Senator NEUBERGER. As I understand it, the election is now scheduled for this coming February—is that correct !—or has there been no election scheduled ?
Mr. WATTERS. There has been no exact date.
tentative announcement made, Mr. Watters, of February? I thought there was an announcement. I think we ought to get that straight, and Mr. Jackson brought this up very properly. I thought there was some tentative announcement made of February 1, and if I am mistaken on that I would very much like to be corrected.
Mr. WATTERS. I think when the date is set the Department will notify us. We have had no official notice of that.
Senator NEUBERGER. Now, Mr. Jackson, wasn't it your understanding that there was an election scheduled for February 1, or am I mistaken?
Mr. JACKSON. That is my understanding.
Mr. WATTERS. I think that is more or less an estimate. There again there could be something, but I don't think a solid date has been set.
Senator NEUBERGER. Mr. Sigler is here from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Department of the Interior. Could you identify yourself for the record and tell us about that so we have the facts straight?
Mr. LEWIS SIGLER. Senator Neuberger, I am Lewis Sigler from the Department of Interior. There has been no date set for the election. The law requires the election to be held as soon as practicable after the appraisal has been finished. The appraisal is now scheduled to be completed on October 21, I believe it is.
Senator NEUBERGER. Of this year?
Mr. SIGLER. Of this year. After that, the Management plan that is in tentative form and has been referred to earlier, and you have a copy of it there on your desk, will need to be completed, discussed thoroughly with the tribe, and it is only at that time that the election date can be fixed. It is our hope that the election will be before the end of the year.
Senator NEUBERGER. Of this year?
Senator NEUBERGER. Let me ask you this, Mr. Sigler: How did both Mr. Jackson and I have the date February 1 in our minds when we have not communicated about this, as Mr. Jackson will bear out? Where did we get that?
Mr. SIGLER. I don't know. We have not heard that before. .
Senator NEUBERGER. Wasn't there something in the press about that, Mr. Jackson? Didn't you see that in the press!
Mr. JACKSON. I saw it somewhere.
Senator NEUBERGER. Where did it come from? Like Topsy, did it just grow? I notice people in the courtroom nodding their heads, too. I am just curious now to know who is making statements or announcements about elections, because both Mr. Jackson and I, without previous concurrence or discussion, had the date February 1 in our minds, and I noticed people in the courtroom nodding.
Mr. SIGLER. I don't know, I had not heard the date before.
Senator NEUBERGER. Please continue, Mr. Jackson. I didn't want to interrupt, but I wanted to get our facts straight on this.
Mr. JACKSON. Yes. Well, Senator, at this point I would submit our action in proposing certain deletions from S. 2047 for the record.
Senator NEUBERGER. This resolution by the tribal committee will appear in the hearing record.
(The document referred to is as follows:)
"Be it resolved, That the Klamath executive committee supports the principle of S. 2047 with the following changes:
"1. Delete section (b), lines 12 through 14.
“2. Delete the words 'Section 28 of this Act.' on line 2, page 3, and substitute in lieu thereof the words ‘Section 5 (a) (1)'.
"3. Delete section 28."
We hereby certify that the above resolution was duly adopted at a regular meeting of the Klamath tribal executive committee on October 1, 1957, a quorum of 7 members being present, by a vote of 4 for and 2 against, such action being in accordance with the constitution and bylaws approved
DELFORD LANG, Chairman.
ELNATHAN DAVIS, Secretary. Mr. Jackson. I maybe should go to the extent of saying that our fears are premised considerably on the possibilities of continued confusion. It may be that upon the election that is to be held prior to the sale of-prior to the possibility of Federal acquisition, are we to understand that in the event that 50 percent, or the 70 percent that is now of record as wanting to withdraw, do we in any way understand your bill to mean that if the 70 percent will elect to withdraw, then the extent of Federal acquisition would be to the extent of that 70 percent?
Senator NEUBERGER. I am just asking Mr. Gamble about this. Under the bill, the Federal Government, of course, would acquire the whole reservation regardless of the percentage of the election, and I would like to have Mr. Gamble point out how the distinction would be made between those who elected to stay in the tribe and those who withdrew from the tribe. Now it is my understanding under the bill, S. 2047, the Federal Government would acquire the entire reservation. That is the timber and the marsh. The timber would be administered by the United States Forest Service; the marsh, of I think some 70,000 acres, would be managed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. And I would like Mr. Gamble to point out for the record just how the distinction would be made between those who elect to withdraw and those who stay in.
Now, for those who withdraw, the purpose of the bill is for the Federal Government to pay a fair, competitive market price for the timber. We can discuss later how that would be determined; for the Federal Government to pay a fair, competitive market price for the timber, and how those funds would be used to reimburse those who elect to withdraw.
Mr. GAMBLE. Well, Mr. Chairman, I would say this: The language that is proposed in S. 2047 would effectively render that portion of Public Law 587 dealing with the withdrawal procedure completely useless. It has no bearing whatsoever by the terms of this bill, because there is no question on which the Indians have to make any decision. There is no property to be managed because the Government will purchase all of it under the bill.
Senator NEUBERGER. But what would the distinction be between those Indians who elect to withdraw and those Indians who wish to stay and remain under some form of private tribal life or custodianship?
Mr. GAMBLE. They would have that privilege, but there would be no private tribal property to be managed.
Senator NEUBERGER. The entire property then would become that of the Federal Government; however, a distinction would be made in the reimbursement to those who elect to remain in and those who withdraw. That certainly is my assumption, because those two groups of Indians would certainly have reached an entirely different choice in the matter. Is that not correct?
Mr. GAMBLE. I don't conceive it to be that way. As I understand it, all of the property would be purchased and the payment would be made to the individuals. They would all get their share of the moneys.
Senator NEUBERGER. I understand that, but what distinction would be made between those Indians who elect to remain and those Indians who choose to withdraw completely from tribal life? Would that then be up to them personally, as individuals, to work out after they have been reimbursed, or would there be some administrative procedure provided for by law?
Mr. Wolf. The proposed section 31, Senator, says in part thatNotwithstanding any other provision of this Act, the Secretary shall pay, at the earliest practicable time * * * to each member of the Klamath Tribe enrolled pursuant to section 3 of this Act, or to his heirs, his pro rata share of the purchase price of such tribal lands. Now, as I understand it, he would get his pro rata payment.
Senator NEUBERGER. I understand that, but then those Indians though, who elect to remain, let's say if the so-called surveys are correct that 30 percent, would they then themselves have to set up some different sort of life or community than those who have elected to withdraw? In other words, the purpose of the bill, as you know, Mr. Jackson, the fundamental purpose of the bill is to protect these resources from hasty liquidation, which would be to the disadvantage of the Indians, the community, and the State. At the same time, the purpose of the bill is to provide a fair market price for the timber so that by selling to a monopoly buyer, namely the Federal Government, you would not lose such temporary advantage as there might be from having small competitive sales. So the purpose of the bill is twofold. The purpose of the bill is to protect the resources from complete liquidation and destruction in a hasty period of time, and also to assure the Indians a fair market price. Now, I gather-does that answer your questions, or do you have further questions about the provisions of the bill?
Mr. JACKSON. Yes. What we had in mind, that is those of us who are interested in this Federal acquisition, is that, would there be any reason for an election prior to the time that you would have had in attempting to acquire Federal acquisition? You see what I mean? That if a group elects to remain and a group over here elects to withdraw, now, why then this matter of Federal acquisition comes into the picture following that. That is the point that I don't believe is going to work out advantageously to our members at large.
Senator NEUBERGER. That is the reason I was disturbed when somewhere I read this February 1 date, because if I were a member of the Klamath Tribe, I would prefer, and I have always thought this, that the Federal Government, meaning the Congress and the President, decides first what form of management this timber should come under, if any, before I participated in the election. If I were a member of the Klamath Tribe, I would hope that the election would take place after the 2d session of the 85th Congress, because that session is either going to pass S. 2047 with such amendments as may be advisable, and you have suggested some today that may be advisable, but we would have to study that, but I think that session of the Congress is either going to pass S. 2047 or it is not going to pass it. At the end of the 2d session of the 85th Congress, in other words, you will know whether or not there is going to be Federal purchase because when that session ends,
if we have not provided for Federal purchase, then the Management Specialists are under orders to proceed with the sale of the reservation. Is that not correct, Mr. Watters?
Mr. WATTERS. Yes, that is right.
Senator NETBERGER. That is correct. So if I were a member of the Klamath Tribe, I would prefer to make my election after the 2d session of the 85th Congress, so you would know what the Government of the United States, the Congress, and the President, decided in the matter. Now, do you feel that way, or do you not feel that way?
. Mr. Jackson. That is our position, and it would provide for less confusion.
Senator NEUBERGER. Does the tribal committee concur with you in that? Have you discussed this?
Mr. JACKSON. We had informally, we had discussed that very point from time to time, wondering why should there be an election prior to the possibilities of Federal acquisition.
Senator NEUBERGER. That is the reason that again I come back that somewhere I got this February 1 date from the press, and it disturbed me because I felt your election should take place after you know what the Congress is going to do. Because just because we have introduced S. 2047 does not mean, as you know, that Congress is going to pass this. A great deal of money is involved; it must be appropriated from the Federal Treasury. It only pertains to 1 State in the Union, the State of Oregon, which means that we are under the very heavy and difficult obligation of trying to persuade the Senators and Representatives from
47 other States of the Nation to provide a substantial sum of money for acquisition of Indian resources in just 1 State. And certainly nobody can rely on passage of a law that is fraught with that much difficulty to secure. You people saw when you were back in Washington with your legal representatives the great difficulty which I had to even secure reimbursement from the Federal Treasury for the cost of termination. Is that not correct?
Mr. JACKSON. That is right.
Senator NEUBERGER. We succeeded in getting through the Senate the full recommended sum of $1,100,000, but that was cut 50 percent down to $550,000 in the House, and it was only with difficulty that we received even that sum from the Congress conference committee. So this is fraught with a good deal of difficulty. And because of that uncertainty, I would think that the election should be held after the 2d session of the 85th Congress, and that is the reason I interrupted when you brought this up to ask you these questions, because I am eager to learn and have put on the record whether or not that is your view and that of your associates on the tribal executive committee.
Mr. JACKSON. Well, that, Mr. Chairman, was the purpose of bringing out our thinking at this point. And the other thought that we had in mind with reference to your bill, of course, the fair market value. I don't know, I think I may be the only one that has taken exception to that, because I feel that if the Federal Government says, "Here, Mr. Indian, I don't want to mess with you any longer; I want to get you out of my hair," well, if that is the case, if that is the thinking, if that is the feeling of Congress, I would want to, and if I have got to settle with my heritage, I want to get as near just compensation as I could possibly get.