Page 64


Page 64
Colorado River problem
Is Part Of,8
Full text
ALLISON ON THE COLORADO RIVER PROBLEM 369 cost to Mexico per acre irrigated for 1922 was $3.13, while in the United States it was $1.09. This is not because Mexico used more water per acre than the United States, but because of the 10% differential allowance for seepage and evaporation in the United States and because the water charge by the District in Mexico was greater than that in the United States until the time the Water Companies were absorbed. The highest rate paid in Mexico for water is $2.08 per sec-ft.; the lowest rate in Mexico is 75 cents per 1,000 cu. m., or $1.83 per sec-ft., both without any allowance for losses. In the United States, the highest rate paid, until the date of absorption of the Water Companies, was $1.70 per sec-ft. It is true that since then this rate has been raised to $2.00 per sec-ft., but the water is delivered to the individual irrigator, eliminating all losses of whatever nature in canal transit; besides this, it is the practice now, and has been for some years, for the District to furnish water on the American side for canal sluicing, washing out alkali lands, and generally for helping out the individual farmer. No such courtesy is now or ever has been extended to the Mexican water user. The cash allowance, besides water, to the Water Companies by the District for 1920, 1921, and 1922, was $202,674.23. As stated in the foregoing, none of the canal systems in Mexico, other than the main canal of the District, is maintained by the District. The amount of the assessment against a Mexican acre is the same or more than the average water assessment of the Mutual Water Companies in the District for the same purpose in the United States. As matters now stand, since the District has absorbed the Mutual Water Companies, to equalize the maintenance and water charges the District should also assume the obligation of maintaining all canals in Mexico. It should pay at the rate of $9.09 per acre for each acre irrigated in Mexico, together with the cost of the dredgers and other operating equipment of the Mexican Canal Companies and should assume the delivery of water to the individual Mexican user in the same manner that it has done with the Mutual Water Companies on the American side. To the water user on the American side, the District, in 1923, paid in cash the sum of $4,724,612 to cover the items of canal systems, equipment, etc. The advantages to the American water user in the present system of selling water by the District to Mexico have never been properly presented by the District. Were the All-American Canal to be built, for instance, and should the District discontinue the usage of its Mexico main canals and the sale of water to Mexico en route, the American water user would not only have the increased bonded debt on his land, created in the financing of such canal, but he would bear the burden of the decreased revenues of the District. The District, in that case, would be identical with a large department store, having all the departments idle except the top floor; in other words, a store supplied with goods and equipment to do business on all ten floors, but only selling and creating a profit on the top floor. The expense of carrying water from the Heading on the river for fifty miles through Mexico, or through an All-American Canal on the American side, without creating any business until

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