- Page 9
- Colorado River question
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- WHEREAS, said river is an international stream between the United States of America and the United States of Mexico with all of the water supplying the same coming from the United States of America, and the United States of Mexico is rapidly extending the irrigated area supplied from said river within her own boundaries, and great storage projects within the United States of America are in existence and in contemplation, and WHEREAS, said United States of Mexico, although having no strictly legal right to a continuance of the river flow for beneficial purposes, nevertheless, may hereafter make some claim thereto, and WHEREAS, under acts of Congress of May 13, 1924, and March 3, 1927, a commission of three has been appointed by the President to co-operate with representatives of the United States of Mexico in a study regarding the equitable use of the waters of the Colorado River and other international waters for the purpose of securing information on which to base a treaty relative to international uses. NOW, THEREFORE, and to the end that no unfortunate misunderstanding may arise between the United States of America and the United States of Mexico, and that no false encouragement may be given to present or future developments along the Colorado river in the United States of Mexico, WE, THE GOVERNORS OF ALL SEVEN OF THE COLORADO RIVER STATES, WITH OUR INTERSTATE RIVER COMMISSIONERS AND ADVISORS IN CONFERENCE ASSEMBLED in the City of Denver on this 26th day of August, 1927, do hereby in great earnestness and concern make common petition that a note be dispatched to the government of the United States of Mexico calling attention of that government to the fact, that, neither it nor its citizens or alien investors, have any legal right as against the United States of America or its citizens to a continuance of the flow of the Colorado river for beneficial purposes and that the United States of Mexico can expect no such continuance except to the extent that as a matter of comity the two governments may declare hereafter by treaty and that especially under no circumstances can the United States of Mexico hope to use water made available through storage works constructed or to be constructed within the United States of America, or hope to found any right upon any use thereof. We believe too, so great are the water necessities of our states, that any adjustment made with the United States of Mexico concerning the Colorado river, should be based upon that river alone. We further earnestly suggest that a special commission be created by act of congress for the Colorado river alone, a majority of the commission to be appointed from citizens of the Colorado river states, or that by act of congress the present commission already referred to be enlarged to contain two additional members to come from the Colorado river states. It is only by such precautionary measures, promptly taken, that our seven states with their millions of people can be given a basis of economic certainty, adequate protection, and a feeling of security pending the negotiation of an early treaty between the two governments. And your memorialists will forever pray. GEO. W. P. HUNT, R. C. DILLON, Governor of Arizona. Governor of New Mexico. C. C. YOUNG, GEO. H. DERN, Governor of California Governor of Utah. WM. H. ADAMS, FRANK C. EMERSON, Governor of Colorado. Governor of Wyoming. F. B. BALZAR, Governor of Nevada. HYDRO-ELECTRIC POWER It will be possible to develop approximately four million hydro-electric horsepower on the Colorado river below the Utah line, of which 80 percent will be developed in Arizona. The California proposal as embodied in the Swing-Johnson Bill, proposes that the government shall develop power on the Colorado river, which will be transmitted to California, tax free. If the power is developed by any other agency than the federal government—and it can and will be if the federal government does not build the project—the States of Arizona and Nevada will derive revenue from taxation. If, as the law now stands, government property is not taxable—the Congress of the United States has full power to permit the taxation of hydro-electric projects.
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