Monday, December 9, 2013

PL93-620 T2. 1973-Feb 74- Udall's Story: Standing By; Pitching In

Bridge note: It has been tough these past 5 months getting the materials together and writing a coherent narrative to cover the events of January through early May 1974. Although I had collected personally much material including my detailed journal, I have chased other possible sources and the results proved sparse. The Udall papers provide little on the key months of January & February. The Havasupai sources, including their principal lobbyist, Joe Sparks, have not been available. 
The result is that this post, with the sub-label T2, brings the story from the Udall point of view through 1973 to the Parks Subcommittee action in early March in very skimpy fashion. Then the situation improves, with a fairly rich supply of material from Udall files covering March and April, the period of the Great Pivot, when Udall moved away from a study/plan to legislative language transferring land accompanied by strong environmental rules and guidelines. My entries labelled T3 and T4 cover this period as Udall files present events. Again, had information from the Havasupai side been available, the story could have been even fuller. Correlative with T3 & T4, my entry U1 treats that same material from the sources I have in my files. Taking those three together, and realizing the sources are not complete, I hope the reader will feel able to understand and judge this crucial legislative event, even if not in possession of all possible information. 

To go back to the start of 1973 (repetition, but from the Udall archive), while supposedly we were trying to work out a Park bill that would minimize controversy, Udall helped by having the Park Service draft what we came up with.  
Aide Terry Bracy reported to Udall that McComb saw the Havasupai transfer as the major problem in the Goldwater approach, which, while it had some attractions, McComb was trying to justify opposing. The Forest Service "reallyi" wanted to kill it. On the memo where Bracy discussed the Havasupai transfer, Udall noted "OR leave it out". Bracy urged Udall to make sure Goldwater knew how important Udall was in the House.  Another memo in March provided a view of a visit from Goldwater aide Emerson, who was hopping mad at criticisms of his work by conservationists. Bracy commented that Goldwater wanted all the press as step one in his re-election. Moreover, Emerson didnt know anything about Udall's House influence, nor had they approached Senator Jackson, though Goldwater had been bragging to people that he was the only one who mattered. Emerson's re-draft was "pretty good": the Park ran from Lees to Grand Wash Cliffs; a Zone of Influence allowed the Secretary to control development; there were air space rules, wilderness, and status quo on the damsite. However, the Havasupai transfer and grazing continuation were bothering conservationists

Goldwater & Emerson plowed ahead, introducing their bill in March with Udall as House sponsor. At this point Udall wrote to a Goldwater ally that the transfer of land to the Havasupai in that bill was "the best of the alternatives"-- they need a land base and economic help. In his standard replies, he called the bill a "lightning rod". [I am not sure, however, that at this point, he was expressing any more than his support of the bill as written; as he became engaged, he would try out several formulations.]

Goldwater showed his seriousness by writing personally to Mo, 26 April, about all the effort put into the bill. Goldwater went on: He had heard complaints from river concessionaires, but that issue was irrelevant. More important was giving something to the Havasupai--not all they were asking for, but the facilities on the mesa above and a little more grazing land. The Sierra Club is greatly opposed to that. [So much for giving us any credit for trying to work with him.] Another problem was the Hualapai's dam. Goldwater had told them there would be no dam, but their lawyer, R. Marks, didnt want to quit. Maybe it would help to give them money. The Park bill was long overdue; it would not affect cattlemen or Indians and would help protect the Canyon. He ended with an appeal: So lets have lunch. I seek all the help you can give, as a personal favor and for what this will mean to Arizona.

Meanwhile, Goldwater's legislative style was shown when he heard from Globe, the ranching company, that "our best 24,000 acres" had been taken for the Havasupai. The area was promptly (16 Apr) removed from the lands the Havasupai were to obtain and left in Globe's grazing allotment. Globe then wrote it was satisfied and would not further testify.

In July, I wrote Udall, complaining about the Senate bill and suggesting changes that could be made. We became more focussed when McComb received a telegram from Udall setting a one-day hearing on 20 Jul 1973, and saying, "Most interested in seeing amendments you would propose". Excited, we replied we would be in DC on the 16th to discuss amendments. False alarm; Alaska business pushed the Canyon aside. 

In another memo, Bracy suggested that conservationists would like to have the boundary start at Lees Ferry; Goldwater would agree, but had had to back down when a Utah senator "adamantly" opposed that location. Udall's "OK" is hand-written on the memo -- a nice bit of legislation shaping, that would have effect when the Udall took up the bill for the House.

During the fall, Udall received a range of letters: Hualapai, Havasupai backers, rancher allies wanting Park land deleted. The Navajo chairman supported the Senate-passed bill, and noted that the Marble Canyon Navajo Tribal Park was set aside in 1966, and provided "adequate and full protection". And indeed, the Senate bill took no Navajo land, only proposing a boundary on Marble Canyon's eastern rim if the Navajo concurred, a most unlikely prospect. Since there was no other provision for the eastern boundary, the end result of the legislation was to leave it undefined, and something to argue over.

In general, Udall's answers stressed that the House was likely to add land, and would not delete any.

The one-day hearing was finally held --again with little notice-- in November ( Udall could not attend), and the standard letter was changed to say he was working on a proposal that went beyond the Senate's bill.

Now for the disappointment. Very, very strangely, Udall's archives contain almost nothing for the period from December through February when the bill that the Parks Subcommittee passed in early March was being prepared. Strange, because Bracy had been so conscientious in sending his thoughts to Udall. However, this written flow seems to have stopped after Dale Pontius took over from Bracy. The files contain no memos, no maps, no reports on trips and visits.

The Jan-Feb story of the negotiations and decisions involved as Udall agreed to add lands to the Park is mysteriously absent, forcing me to rely on my journal and external sources for "The Best We Could Do", entries S1-3. Once the action over the Havasupai became front and center, starting in March, Udall file material is again rich. Using that material for T3-4, I can try to show how Udall's position shifted (and then shifted back, as he calibrated). So to that Great Pivot I will turn in the next entry, disappointed as I said that the area of our success left so little archival evidence.

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