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The Colorado River Boulder Canyon Project and the All-American Canal
Is Part Of,8
Full text
Document Number 142, and has already been referred to. In that report several recommendations are made. It is significant to note that the very first recommendation is for the construction of a canal, to be all on United States soil, at the expense of the lands benefitted. This is usually known as the All-American Canal feature. It is further provided that ex-service men and women shall have a preferential opportunity to acquire Government lands under the proposed canal. It was early recognized that an All-American Canal was impractical unless provision was made for a dependable irrigation water supply for the lands to be served, but that the cost of such storage on the Colorado River would be too great a financial load upon lands already severely burdened. The Reclamation Service engineers and the Department of the Interior therefore recommended the construction of a high dam at Boulder Canyon, or its extension, Black Canyon, of a sufficient height which would not only accomplish the primary purpose of flood control and provision for water supply but would permit, as an incident to the operation of those works, the generation of hydro-electric energy. It is then proposed that these power rights or opportunities be disposed of by the Federal Government to interested agencies under such conditions as will return to the Federal Treasury within a reasonable time all of the moneys thus advanced. In other words, there is no proposition looking toward the Federal Government going into the power business. The recommendations provide only that the opportunity to generate power incidental to storage of water and flood control be made the "burden carrier" for the return of the moneys advanced by the Federal Government. The Swing-Johnson Bill Following the receipt of the report the Secretary of the Interior transmitted it to Congress. Thereupon there was introduced concurrently in the Senate and House what is now known as the Swing-Johnson Bill. The Swing-Johnson Bill is nothing more and nothing less than legislation for the purpose of carrying into effect the recommendations of our Federal officials. The bill, therefore, does not represent the plan or the selfish ambition of any city, or district or group of people, not even of Imperial Valley, but does represent an effort to carry into effect the recommendation of Federal agencies, including the Reclamation Service and Department of the Interior. It has received the endorsement of such Federal officials as Mr. Herbert Hoover, Secretary of Commerce. 6

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