Ben Avery, on 26 Dec, thought he had a Christmas present, saying President Ford had signed the bill while skiing in Vail, while he, Ben, had been given the low-down by Republicans Fannin and aide. For Ben, the "major action" was eliminating the northern additions. The Secretary could then study them for park values and ask for a new bill. He thought another study, that of the plateau lands in the old Monument, could result in a better boundary, eliminating from the Park "grazing and wildlife lands that have little or no park values". The River was put into the Park from the Paria to Grand Wash Cliffs. He thought the bill gave the Park jurisdiction over Lee's Ferry. There were a couple of small additions, but a big controversy was placing 185 kac in trust for the Havasupai. He correctly summarized some of the restrictions, including having the Secretary develop a land use plan with "step-by-step pubic review and comment".
There was no change in dam status, but "by including all of Grand Canyon within the park, the Congress gave those who are opposed to building any more dams in the Canyon a strong fighting position, assuring the entire nation will be on our side." [What a different song he sings from ten years before.] "This is as it should be because the Grand Canyon does not belong to Arizona. We merely hold it in trust for all". A great debt is owed to those who worked so hard: Fannin, Steiger, & Bible, who took a strong stand "to make this bill truly a Grand Canyon bill, and not a hikers and backpackers bill as was sought by the Sierra Club." His tribute did not, he wrote, lessen my disagreement with Steiger over the dam, and does not take from Goldwater and Udall the great credit of being the original authors. "It was Barry who helped nurture the dream of putting all of Grand Canyon in the park". NPS now faces a tremendous task in planning & managing this huge area, "much of it so remote that it is seldom visited by man." It has two years to make a new wilderness proposal.