page 71

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page 71
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71Mr. BANNISTER. Yes; I do, Mr. Hayden. I feel that with the possibility known to Mexico of the building of the all-American canal, she will be more likely to want to negotiate a treaty now than she would later. Then I also feel that with the reservoir built it would be possible, if the Government wants to, to so regulate the outgoing flow that Mexico would not get, at a usable time, more than what would be regarded, as against this country, as constituting a fair portion of the water of the river.Mr. HAYDEN. Do you agree with Secretary Work that the bill should be amended with respect to the all-American canal provisions so that canal might or might not be built, depending upon a treaty?Mr. BANNISTER. Well, I should say as the bill stands at the present time he could or could not build it, under the authority given by the bill. I do not see any harm in including the language which he proposes. I know what it is. On the other hand, I do not see the absolute necessity, because, as I understand it, the Attorney General has ruled that under authority to build a project the Secretary of the Interior is not compelled to do so. But I have no objection to the incorporation of the language to which you refer.Mr. HAYDEN. Director Mead, of the Reclamation Service, and Secretary Work seem to think it is quite important to omit any language from this bill which might give offense to Mexico.Mr. SWING. Does the gentleman from Arizona favor an amendment such as is proposed by Secretary Work ?Mr. HAYDEN. I am questioning the witness.You stated that there should be several amendments to the bill, and you classified them under various heads. You stated that the project should be subject to the Colorado River compact, and expressed doubt as to the power of Congress to do that in advance of its complete approval. That, I think, is in line with your testimony a year ago.Mr. BANNISTER. The question is one involved in doubt; yes.Mr. HAYDEN. And you still adhere to the opinions which you gave to the committee a year ago?Mr. BANNISTER. That the question is not clear from doubt.Mr. HAYDEN. At that time, you leaned rather strongly to the idea that Congress did not have any such power.Mr. BANNISTER. I can not recall which way I leaned in it. I know I have always regarded the question as not free from doubt. I am not willing to take chances on its validity.Mr. HAYDEN. And that same objection would apply to conditions placed upon grants of right of way, that they should also be subject to the Colorado River compact?Mr. BANNISTER. I think there is the same element of doubt there, but I think Congress should exercise the power if it has it.Mr. HAYDEN. You stated that all Government interests affected by the project should be made subject to the Colorado River compact; among them you named navigation and any right which the United States might have as a riparian owner of lands in California. Does that also apply to Indian lands, for which the Government now claims the right to whatever water is needed, regardless of the law of any State?

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