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forest lands, and shall be subject to the same laws applicable to other national forest lands.
"(b) The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized and empowered, under general regulations established by him, to permit the use of rights-of-way through lands referred to in this section for beneficial purposes.
"SEC. 30. (a) Any remaining tribal lands acquired pursuant to section 27 of this Act, other than lands referred to in subsection (b) of this section, shall be sold on a competitive bid basis, except that any member enrolled under section 3 of this Act who wishes to purchase any of the agricultural or grazing lands comprising such remaining tribal lands shall have a priority right to purchase any part of such lands for not less than the highest offer received by competitive bid, and to apply toward the purchase price all or any part of the sum payable to such member pursuant to section 31 of this Act.
“(b) That portion of the tract of tribal lands acquired pursuant to section 27 of this Act comprising approximately seventy thousand acres of Klamath marsh lands shall be administered by the Fish and Wildlife Service of the Department of the Interior.
"SEC. 31. Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, the Secretary shall pay, at the earliest practicable time but in no event later than one year after the acquisition by the United States of the tribal lands referred to in this Act, 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.
"SEC. 32. There are hereby authorized to be appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, such sums as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this Act.”
Senator NEUBERGER. This proposal is only one possible method of preventing the gutting of the ponderosa-pine forest and preserving the feeding and nesting grounds for the waterfowl following the Pacific flyway. There may be other means of accomplishing this end, such as purchase of the reservation by the State of Oregon, and I have suggested to State officials that they give us their reaction to this alternative at our Portland meeting on October 4.
In letters dated August 21 and August 29 I requested that the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture provide our committee with departmental reports on S. 2047 by October 2. I have received a tentative report addressed to me from Secretary Seaton dated September 26, 1957.
I want to introduce Mr. James H. Gamble, who is chief clerk of the Senate Indian Affairs Subcommittee, who is with us today, on my left, and Mr. Robert Wolf, forester for the committee, who is here on my right. And, Mr. Gamble, I think it is sufficiently important that you read into the record, so that the people here may hear it directly, Secretary Seaton's views on S. 2047.
Mr. GAMBLE. This letter is dated September 26, 1957, addressed to Senator Neuberger as chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Indian Affairs:
“DEAR SENATOR NEUBERGER: In recent conversation with Mr. H. Rex Lee, Legislative Associate Commissioner of Indian Affairs, and again in a letter dated September 9, 1957, you asked that the departmental report on S. 2047, relating to Federal acquisition of the Klamath Indian Forest, be submitted prior to the scheduled hearings in Oregon on October 2, if possible.
“We appreciate your interest in the subject, and shall cooperate fully in the effort to provide for the conservation of the timber resources of the reservation in a manner that recognizes and safeguards the property rights of the Indians. We regret that it will not be possible for the Department to have ready by October 2 a final report on S. 2047,
but we can outline for the benefit of the committee some of our present thoughts on the subject. You will understand, I am sure, that these thoughts are tentative and are still under active study. We, as well as your committee, are still seeking the most feasible solution to the problem.
“We believe that the conservation of this timber resource is of primary importance to the economy of the area and to the welfare of the public generally. In recognition of this fact, Congress has deferred and sales of tribal forest lands until after the end of the 2d session of the 85th Congress in order that Congress may determine whether further legislation with respect to the forest will be enacted.
"Congress has determined by the act of August 13, 1954 (68 Stat. 718), that a continuation of the Federal trust over the property of the Klamath Indians would not be in the best interest of he Indians. As would be the case in any group, however, certain individuals may not be qualified to handle a large capital asset with reasonable prudence, and the 1954 statute requires the Secretary of the Interior to safeguard the interests of these individuals by arranging for the appointment of guardians through the State courts or by such other means as he deems adequate, which could include, for example, the establishment of individual involuntary private trusts for them.
“The essence of the 1954 act is that the Klamath Indians shall be freed of all Federal restraints applicable to them because of their Indian origin, and that they shall be placed in the same status as all other citizens,
subject to no special restrictions or rights. Inasmuch as existing Federal and State laws do not require the owners of large forest resources to maintain them intact and to manage them on a sustainedyield basis in the interests of conservation, the Klamath Indians should not be subject to any such restrictions when the Federal trust is terminated.
“The manner in which the Klamath Reservation forest area is managed in the future, however, will have a vital impact on the life and economy of the entire Klamath River Basin.
“Kept intact through continued management according to conservation principles of sustained yield, the forest will remain a perpetually productive source of ponderosa pine and other commercial species. Such management would also assure continuation of its important function as a watershed. The large numbers of migratory waterfowl for which it now provides nesting and feeding grounds would be protected, as would the deer and other species of wild animals that now find sanctuary within its boundaries. Further development of the forest's recreational potential would be made possible.
“Were sustained-yield management to be abandoned and the forest broken up and disposed of in small individual tracts to bring the highest price, it is our belief that all these values soon would be lost.
"We believe that the likelihood of the forest's being dissipated in this fashion is a matter for genuine concern.
“Section 5 of Public Law 587 provides that each adult member of the Klamath Indian Tribe shall be given an opportunity to withdraw from the tribe and have his interest in the tribal property converted into money and paid to him, or to remain in the tribe and participate in a tribal-management plan. Inasmuch as the forest resources repre
а sent approximately 90 percent of the total value of all Klamath tribal
property, it is probable that a major portion of these resources must be sold in order to pay those members who elect to withdraw from the tribe. Based on the findings of a survey conducted by the Stanford Research Institute among tribal members on the Klamath Reservation during August and September 1955, it appears that approximately 70 percent of the members may elect to withdraw from the tribe. If this were to happen, as much as 2,660 million board-feet of tribally owned timber might have to be sold from the reservation lands prior to August 13, 1960, in order to comply with the provisions of section 5 of the law. This sales program would be carried out concurrently with the removal of restrictions from allotted timber which, in itself, will make approximately 225 million board-feet available for purchase during a period af approximately 2 years in an economic area with an installed capacity that can cut, at the most, 400 million boardfeet per year.
"It is doubtful whether sustained-yield management would be continued on a very large portion of the timber area if it is sold without restriction in small economic units. The Management Specialists, who have responsibilty for the sales of these units, are obligated under the law to obtain on behalf of the withdrawing members the greatest possible return from these sales. This obligation means that a sizable portion of the area to be sold would have to be sold in small-sized units in order to obtain the greatest amount of competition possible. It is doubtful that such small units, within themselves, can furnish a sustained cut for even the smallest of sawmills.
"In this connection, it should also be noted that State laws do not require sustained-yield management by private operators.
“The tremendously disruptive influence that cutting over of the Klamath Reservation forest lands would have on the economy of the basin is not difficult to contemplate when it is realized that 40 percent of the area's economy is based on timber production. The importance of the reservation timber to the Klamath economy is evident from the fact that it includes about 26 percent of the total commercial-forest area and 26 percent of the sawtimber volume in Klamath County.
"Other values of the forest as a management unit, while less tangible than timber, are of significant importance and must be considered in the public interest.
"In the fall, waterfowl by the millions, following the Pacific flyway, pour into the upper Klamath Basin to rest and feed before continuing southward to their wintering grounds. The marsh on the Klamath Reservation is the most important marsh to waterfowl that is left unprotected in the Nation. This nesting area has been one of the mainstays in keeping up the supply of redheads, canvasbacks, and ruddy ducks in the Pacific Hyway. Deer and other wild creatures also find year-round habitat in the forest.
"The influence which the Klamath Reservation forest has in reducing flood crests and stabilizing the flow of streams throughout the year should, in itself, warrant measures being taken to prevent the timber from being cut to the minimum specifications of the State law. Approximately 303,000 acres of irrigated farmlands are dependent on streams that head on the forest slopes of the Klamath Basin.
"Further, the maximum development of waterpower on the Klamath River cannot be realized without the protection of its headwaters. I
large part of the extensive water resource of the Klamath Basin originates in the many large springs found on reservation lands. Cutting over of the Klamath Reservation forest well might jeopardize the farm production and the waterpower developments dependent on the watershed protection provided by this forest.
"Too, denuding this area of its forest cover would destroy its scenic and recreational appeal, and the slash left from hurry-up logging operations would tend to increase the fire hazard.
“When it is considered that this 745,280-acre tribally owned forest area, described as one of the finest of its type, now is contributing so vitally to the general welfare of the Klamath River Basin and to the Nation it must be concluded that any action that would, in the long run, diminish or eliminate those benefits should be avoided.
“This Department believes that only through sustained yield management of the forest can its timber, water, wildlife, and recreational resources be maintained forever, and that further legislation for that purpose is desirable.
“The two problems confronting both the Federal Government and the State of Oregon are protecting the property rights of the Klamath Indians on the one hand, and providing for the sustained yield management of an important natural-resource area on the other. Public ownership would accomplish both of these objectives. If there is any reasonable alternative to public ownership which would accomplish the same results, we believe such an alternative should be thoroughly explored.
"It is our purpose to cooperate fully with your committee, and the Congress, in the successful application of the Termination Act in a manner which will accomplish the objective of protecting the values existing in these lands for the benefit of the Klamath Indians and, at the same time, protecting a resource important to the Klamath community, the State of Oregon, and the Nation.
“The views expressed in this letter are tentative. We shall, however, have a departmental report and recommendation ready for the consideration of your committee early next session.
“The Bureau of the Budget advises us that it has no objection to the submission of this report. “Sincerely yours,
"FRED A. SEATON,
“Secretary of the Interior.” Senator NEUBERGER. Thank you, Mr. Gamble. I also will insert without objection at this time a letter from Acting Secretary of Agriculture Don Paarlberg, of the Department of Agriculture, explaining why that Department cannot submit a report now.
(The letter referred to is as follows:) DEAR SENATOR NEUBERGER : Reference is made to your letter of August 29 requesting a report on your bill, S. 2047, prior to scheduled hearings in Klamath Falls and Portland early in October.
This bill and the general question of disposition of Klamath Indian tribal timberlands are being studied with great care in the Department. A report will be submitted as soon as practicable and after necessary Bureau of the Budget clearance. But in view of the complexities of the situation and the many factors that must be considered, we do not expect that a report can be submitted to the committee prior to the scheduled date of the hearings in October. Sincerely yours,
Don PAARLBERG, Acting Secretary.
Senator NEUBERGER. I am immensely heartened and pleased by this encouragement for our proposal from Secretary Seaton, and I hope that by the beginning of the 2d session of the 85th Congress we may have a final report so that the committee can proceed to act on this measure.
By means of the press and through individual letters, we have attempted to notify and invite all of those who have expressed an interest in this Klamath program in the past to appear and testify. We have asked the private timber operators, and others in the lumber industry, to give us the benefit of their views with respect to the disposition that should be made of the forest. Many of these groups have accepted our invitation and some of them are present today. Others, such as the Western Pine Association, have declined to take any position. This is regrettable because, with only a few months available to us to establish a new course of action, it is imperative that each of us contributes his thinking on what should be done.
At this point, Mr. Gamble, I think we should insert in the record the letter which we have received from the Western Pine Association, and I wish to emphasize for the Western Pine Association and all others who have declined to submit their views that I think that this is disturbing and regrettable. We are right up against the gun as to time. When the 2d session of the 85th Congress ends, which will probably be in July or August of 1958, the management specialists then are authorized to commence disposing of these resources. If Congress has not adopted a new policy by that time, then the existing policy will apply and the timber will have to be disposed of on the piecemeal basis which Secretary Seaton has so forcibly warned against. And when a great organization representing many lumber producers such as the Western Pine Association declines to submit their views, it seems to me that they have deliberately left a vacuum as to their own wishes and recommendations in this matter, because I doubt if there will be any opportunity other than these hearings at Klamath Falls or Portland for these views to be submitted. (The letter referred to is as follows:)
WESTERN PINE ASSOCIATION,
Portland, Oreg. DEAR SENATOR NEUBERGER: I have your letter of September 9 regarding the Klamath Reservation, and the hearings to be held at Klamath Falls and Portland on this subject. Your invitation to me to testify or submit a statement is greatly appreciated.
Our association has taken no position on the Klamath matter. We, of course, are most anxious to assure the continuation of a permanent forest-management program that began on this tract in 1913 and has been in operation ever since. We appreciate that this property is the heritage of the Klamath Indians and its disposal or future management should be handled along lines of greatest long-term benefit to the Indians.
I note with interest the statement in your letter that you consider the proposal of S. 2047 for purchase by the Federal Government as only one suggested way of protecting the reservation timberlands, and that you appreciate there may be other sound solutions.
I, too, feel that it may be premature to form opinions on this most complex matter, especially in view of the fact that the appraisal report by the board of specialists has not yet been released. We find general approval of your move to delay sale of the Klamath property so as to achieve a more orderly disposal program. When the appraisal report is available, many of us look forward to making a full review of it with the hope that this may be the basis for wise decision. Very truly yours,
ERNEST L. KOLBE, Forester.