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Washington, May 16, 1911. Respectfully returned to the Chief of Engineers, United States Army.
The existing project for the improvement of the Black Warrior River to the Molberry and Locust Forks provides, among other things, for the construction of Loks and Dams Nos. 17, 18, and 19, with lifts of 21, 14, and 14 feet, respectively, at estimated costs as follows: No. 17..
$547, 243 No. 18.
449, 453 No. 19.
501, 550) Contracts have been made for the construction of No. 17, and funds hare either been provided or authorized for the construction of Nos. 18 and 19.
The act of March 3, 1909, provided for an examination of the Mulberry and Lorust Forks of the Black Warrior River with a view to improvement, and a preliminary examination and survey have been made, resulting in a favorable recommendation to the district officer for the improvement of the two forks by the construction of one lock and dam, the Mulberry Fork extending slack water to Saunders Ferry, and two locks and dams in the Locust Fork extending slack water to Firemile Creek, at an estimated cost originally given as $1,098,585, but now stated to be $1,181, 101.
A later recommendation by the district officer, however, provides for a molitication of the proposed improvement by building Dam 18 with 42 feet liit, thus eliminating Dam 19, the dam in the Mulberry Fork, and the lower dam in the Lust Fork, the total estimated cost being $2,131,320, as compared with $2,596, 831 for the work outlined above.
The method of improvement proposed in the accompanying bill provides for a dam with 63-foot lift at No. 17, thus eliminating Dams 18 and 19 in the Black Warrior River, the dam in the Mulberry Fork, and the lower dam in the Locust Fork. The district officer's estimate for the project thns modified is $2,281,833, using, however, a 66-foot dam with a flight of two locks at No. 17. This estimate apparently includes the additional dam recommended by the district officer in the Locust Fork in orier to carry the improvement to Fivemile Creek. This additional damn is estimatei at $340,922. It will thus be seen that the modification of the project proposed in the bill provides for carrying the improvement up the forks of the river beyond the limits of the existing project to the same points that would be reached by the construction of the lock and dam with 14 feet lift in each of these forks. The additional lock and dam proposed in the Locust Fork may be omitted or included, depending upon its individual merits.
The district officer in his report upon the bill objects very strongly to any modification of the work proposed at No. 17, on account of the resulting delay in the progress of the improvement and the complications that will arise on account of the existing contract for its construction; and he suggests that the present project be carriei uit at that site and a dam of 42 feet lift be built at No. 18, where work has not yet been begun, and that such power developinent as may be practicable be planned in manection with Nos. 17 and 18, built in this manner. He also recommends certain modifications of detail in the bill as written. He does not consider that any power development that could be obtained in connection with the proposed high dam at No. 17 would be of sufficient value to the public to justify the delay that would result in the completion of this lock and dam.
On April 3, 1911, Mr. Richard Lamb, representing certain capitalists who are interested in the proposed improvement, appeared before the board to explain the pr. ect for power development that is referred to in the accompanying bill. And again, on May 15, 1911, Mr. Lamb appeared before the board in company with Hon. J. F. Johnston, United States Senator; Hon. G. W. Taylor, Member of Congress; and Mr. B. H. Hardaway, the contractor for the construction of Lock and Dam So. 17. Mr. Lamb explained the power situation, stating that the parties with whom he is 2-3 ciated contemplated the construction of a storage and power dam at Saunden Ferry, on the Mulberry Fork; but that this work was not financially practicable unless the power company could also have the privilege of developing power that would be available with this storage at some of the Government dams. "He considers it pre
contemplated, and at Dam 17, modified as now proposed. The minimum power to be developed at these two dams, as given in the bill, is 15,000 horsepower. The power company is willing to provide the flowage rights and to build such works as may be required for the developinent of the power, including the part of the dam that is occupied by the power house and the provision of flashboards on the dam, and, furthermore, is willing to pay a rental for the power developed at Dams 16 and 17.
The board considers this plan for power development to be the most favorable one that has been proposed, and to be very desirable of accomplishment if it is found to be practicable to carry it out in such a manner as to reduce the ultimate cost to the United States of the improvement in the interests of navigation. The increase in cost, as compared with the plan recommended by the district officer is estimated by him at $150,513 for a 66-foot dam, and would of course be less than this for a 63-foot dam. Omitting the upper dam proposed in the Locust Fork, which is not recommended by the board at the present time, the slack-water improvement without provision for power development could be provided according to the estimates of the district officer at a cost of $1,790,398. The increased cost in order to provide for power development would therefore be something less than $150,513. The interest on this sum at 3 per cent would be $4,515. The cost of the improvement in the interests of navigation would not be diminished unless the annual rental of the power company would be greater than this amount. The board believes that the rental should be at the uniform rate of $1 per horsepower for all power developed at Dams 16 and 17 and used for industrial purposes, for a period of 20 years, and thereafter to be subject to determination by the Secretary of War for 10-year periods. According to the minimum estimate of 15,000 horsepower given in the bill, this would produce an annual revenue of $15,000 for the power development as completed, with the probability of considerable increase in future years when the power becomes more valuable. În order to justify the original expenditure to enable the power developments to be made, the board considers that a minimum annual payment of $5,000 should be required after the completion of Lock and Dam No. 17.
The board therefore recommends favorable action upon the plan of power development proposed in connection with the accompanying bill, but suggests that certain features of the bill should be modified, as follows:
Section 3: 'I his should be modified to provide that the Secretary of War may enter into supplemental agreements with the present contractors at No. 17, providing either for the annulment of the existing contracts or their modification so as to cover work required for the construction of the higher lock and dam, as he may deem most advantageous for the interests of the United States.
Section 4. This may be omitted as not necessary.
Section 6: A provision should be inserted to the effect that the work of power development, including the company's storage dam and works at the head of Saunders Shoals, shall be commenced within 2 years and completed within 10 years. The rental should be fixed at the rate of $1 per horsepower per annum for all power developed at Nos. 16 and 17 and used for industrial purposes, for a period of 20 years after the power is developed, the rental thereafter to be determined by the Secretary of War subject to revision of the rate at the end of each 10-year period; provided that the payment of rental shall be at least $5,000 per annum after the completion of Lock and Dam No. 17 whether any power has been developed or not. The provision relating to flowage rights should cover all land either temporarily or permanently overflowed.
Section 7: A provision should be inserted that the flash boards shall be provided by the power company.
It is understood that the principal work of construction on Lock and Dam No. 17 now under construction can be so conducted for several months as to be adapted to a height of either 21 feet or 63 feet, and this will give a limited opportunity to make necessary arrangements for change of plans, if authorized by Congress, without interfering materially with the progress of the work. If such arrangements can not be effected in a reasonable time, the work at No. 17 should be carried forward in accordance with the existing project. For the board :
Wm. T. ROSSELL, Colonel, Corps of Engineers, Senior Member of the Board.
The amendments recommended by your committee were submitted to the Secretary of War, who, having examined the same, submitted the following report thereon:
Washington, August 5, 1911. The SECRETARY OF WAR.
Sir: I have the honor to return herewith letter dated August 5, 1911, from the House Committee on Rivers and Harbors, inclosing for the views of the department thereon a bill to improve navigation on the Black Warrior River in the State of Alabama, as revised to August 4, 1911.
This bill is apparently intended as an amendment or substitution for Senate bill No. 943, Sixty-second Congress, first session, which has already been reported on by this ottice under date of June 15, 1911, the same having been printed in Senate report No. 80, Sixty-second Congress, first session, a copy of which is herewith inclosei.
The bill in its present form appears to safeguard all essential interests of navigation and to remove all essential objections heretofore made by this department; so that there seems to remain no obiection to its passage as now drafted. Very respectfully.
WM. H. BIXBY, Chief of Engineers, United States Army. O
NEW BUILDING FOR BUREAU OF ENGRAVING AND
AUGUST 8, 1911.-Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the state of
the Union and ordered to be printed.
Mr. SAEPPARD, from the Committee on Public Buildings and Grounds,
submitted the following
(To accompany H. R. 13367.)
The Committee on Public Buildings and Grounds, to which was referred the bill (H. R. 13367) modifying the existing law for a new building for the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, beg leave to report the same with the recommendation that the bill do pass.
The erection of the new building was authorized by an act approved May 27, 1908. That act authorized a building of the approximate dimensions of 300 by 500 feet with basement and four stories, with interior courts, and of fireproof construction, the limit of cost, including site, being fixed at $2,150,000. After the acquisition of the site and the preparation of final plans it was found that the building could not be constructed of suitable material within the original limit of cost. The first designs contemplated a plain factory building of brick with limestone trimmings, and this type of structure could have been completed within the established limit of cost. It became evident, however, that this building was to be one of a group of monumental department buildings and would therefore require a better and more dignified material. The location of the building on the secondary axis of the Mall also provided an additional reason for more monumental treatment.
The Committee on Public Buildings and Grounds has given the matter careful study and concurs with the Treasury Department that a material more in consonance with the location should be employed. We believe with the department that granite is the most desirable material.
By striking out the words “with interior courts” in the act authorizing the new building for the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, a building may be constructed of granite within the original limit of cost approximately two-thirds the size of the building originally con
templated and in such manner that extensions may be made at a later date. About $1,750,000 is available for construction after deducting the amount expended in acquiring the site.
The bill reported favorably by the committee modifies the original act by striking out the words with interior courts.” As the building originally contemplated was to contain 450,000 square feet of floor space, more than twice the floor space of the present buildings occupied by the bureau, a liberal allowance being made for future growth, it is evident that the modified structure made possible by the bill now under consideration will, in connection with the present buildings. afford the bureau the relief it so justly and so urgently demands.
It is hardly possible to overstate the necessity of new and larger quarters for the Bureau of Engraving and Printing:
The present buildings of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, consisting of the main building, completed in 1880, and a number of additions erected from time to time, as necessities required, became inadequate for the purposes to which they were devoted several years ago. Secretary of the Treasury Shaw, in his annual report for 1986 (p. 24), directed the attention of Congress to the need of a new structure, and in a letter transmitting to the Speaker of the House of Representatives a report of Thomas J. Sullivan, at that time Director of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, commented on the structure as follows:
The present facilities are entirely inadequate. I doubt if a worse sweatshop exists on the earth than the factory in which the Government manufactures its money, its bonds, its internal-revenue and post-office stamps. The condition of the employees, especially in summer, is well-nigh unbearable, and every consideration pleads for improvement.
Secretary of the Treasury Cortelyou, in bis annual report for 1907 (p. 27), had the following to say, after describing conditions in the bureau:
I was painfully impressed with the inadequacy of the rooms available for the number of people employed and the volume of work executed. I found the most de plorable overcrowding of men and women in every part of the building. In aidi. tion to the overcrowding of the employees, I found that it was necessary to work a part of the force beyond the regular hours, and a considerable number of men and women at night. That part of the force engaged on overtime is required to work from 8 a. m. to 5 p. m., and the night force to work from 3.30 p. m. until 11.30 p. mn. daily. The working of any portion of the force of the bureau beyond the regular hours and at night is objectionable. The long hours involved in the orertime are exhausting to the men and women engaged in this laborious work, and it is obviously undesirable in many other ways. Arrangements have been made to the end that hereafter no lortion of the operative force shall be required to work overtime. The only relief that can be afforded the men and women working at night is to provide adequate facilities for the execution of their work during the regular hours of business in the department.
Speaker Cannon made a personal investigation of conditions in the bureau on March 6, 1908, and condemned them in most forcible terms.
Since the beginning of the present session of Congress on April 4, 1911, a subcommittee of the Committee on Public Buildings and Grounds has made a personal inspection of the buildings of this bureau in the course of a general investigation of all Federal buildings recently instituted by the committee. The subcommittee found the conditions 80 strongly condemned in 1906, 1907, and 1908 by competent authorities to have grown more intolerable with the years." In 1907 there