« PreviousContinue »
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE
STATEMENT OF FRANKLIN G. FLOETE, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF
DEFENSE, PROPERTY AND INSTALLATIONS
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
STATEMENTS OF LT. COL. W. H. WAUGH, FACILITIES BRANCH,
SERVICE DIVISION, G-4; MAJ. S. C. HANSEN, ARMY COMMUNICA-
DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY
STATEMENT OF COMDR. W. J. KEATING, OFFICE OF CHIEF OF NAVAL
OPERATIONS, OVERSEAS BASE MAINTENANCE
DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE
STATEMENTS OF COL. J. L. DICKMAN, WAR PLANS DIVISION,
DIRECTORATE OF PLANS, HEADQUARTERS; LT. COL. B. C. JOSEPH,
Mr. FLOETE. The total amount owned or controlled by the Department of Defense which includes the Army, Navy, and Air Force, is less than 1 percent of the total acreage of Alaska, which as we understand it, is about 375 million acres. The Department of Defense owns or controls less than 312 million acres. According to our latest figures, to be exact, it is 3,446,000 acres.
Senator CORDON. Can I have that figure again?
Mr. FLOETE. 3,446,000, which is divided into the following categories: In fee, 13,000 acres; under lease, 1,900 acres; by permits from other agencies, 887,600 acres; and by public land orders, 2,543,000
That totals 3,446,000. Of that acreage, about 45,000 acres is used by the communications system which also serves civilian purposes.
On that acreage, the 3 departments have approximately 150 active installations of various types, with a total cost of about $500 million.
Senator CORDON. By the way, Mr. Secretary, if there is any information here that you would prefer not to have on the record, please indicate it.
Mr. FLOETE. Would you say that anything up to date is classified? We have tried to keep it general enough.
Senator CORDON. Well, that is all right. I hope that there is nothing here that we need take off the record, but if there is at any time, please let us know. We can get the information here confidentially for our purposes, without putting it on this printed record.
Mr. FLOETE. I have the breakdown of that acreage. If you are interested we have it. Because of changing conditions we may not be exact to the last acre, but it is substantially correct.
For instance, the Air Force controls or owns by far the largest part of that acreage, the Navy the least, and the Army is second. I would give you that breakdown if you are interested in it.
These men from the services who are here can give you all the detailed information that you may ask. I am just giving you the general facts.
Senator CORDON. Can you give us the gross acreage of the Air Force?
Mr. FLOETE. 2,544,000.
Since the end of World War II, the Department of Defense has returned to the public domain approximately 5,930,000 acres. That is so-called land acres. I am not used to the water acres, but they refer to that also. They have returned slightly over 2 million water acres immediately surrounding some of the islands.
Senator CORDON. Are we to understand, then, that there is a considerable water acreage still reserved!
Commander KEATING. Yes, sir; there is.
Senator CORDON. We will get into that later. I just want to get that fact into the record.
Mr. FLOETE. We are continually screening real property to determine whether or not it is excess, not only in Alaska but elsewhere. We do that periodically. The last letter to the services went out about 6 months ago, and we are just at the moment about to get out another, particularly since Mr. Mansure, Administrator of GSA, and Mr, Dodge, of the Bureau of the Budget, have requested that we conduct another screening to determine what may be excess. To what extent that will affect this particular situation we cannot say today. I suppose it will have some effect on it.
Rather recently, in addition to those 5,930,000 acres that have been returned, the services have completed screenings that will result in the relinquishment of an additional slightly in excess of 300,000 acres. Obviously, each of these screenings has to be conducted on an individual basis, and I understand that the services, even before receiving the second letter from us, are proceeding on that basis.
None of these figures include the acreage which is under the control of the Navy under the petroleum reserve. As I understand it, that reserve was created by Congress in 1922 or 1923 as a result of what we all remember was some incident. The Navy, under that act, controls 48,800,000 acres, which of course is shown on your map in the immediate vicinity of Barrow.
Senator CORDON. We have some information from the Geological Survey with reference to the reserve that has been set apart by the Navy, as well as the adjoining reserve of substantially the same size which has simply been reserved from any entry.
Mr. FLOETE. Each of the services has complete information as to what makes up the figures I have given you. In each service there are a number of large acreages, but a great many smaller ones. Some of those locations, I think, are classified. Is that correct, with reference to the disclosure of some of those ?
Mr. COMARow. The exact location of many of these installations would be classified. However, disclosure of any of the larger installations would not be classified.
Senator CORDON. As to the areas that are classified, if I understand you correctly, while there may be a number of them, they are small in acreage.
Mr. Comarow. Relatively speaking they are small, sir.
Senator CORDON. And if they are classified, I think that fact would bet adequate for this committee. You deem them important or certainly you would not have them classified.
Mr. FLOETE. We went over the list yesterday and picked out the larger areas in which I think you would be interested.
Senator CORDON. Now if you can give us any information with respect to the larger areas, I will be happy to receive it—the location, the gross acreage, and the extent of actual use or prospective use and whether any of those areas are within this group that you testified to, some 300,000 acres that are now in process to being released.
Mr. FLOETE. I understand in addition to the 300,000 there are 500,000 acres more that are expected to be returned. So you can make it for your record a total of 800,000.
Senator CORDON. Then we have 300,000 acres which I understood from your statement will be released, and 500,000 more that you expect will be released but with respect to that no affirmative definite action has yet been taken.
Mr. FLOETE. Are they not both equally definite, the 300,000 and 500,000?
Major RAINEY. That doesn't apply to the Army, sir.
Mr. COMAROW. Yes, they are. All of these, of course, are a matter of the Chief of the Alaska Command, and are in the mill at the moment.
The CHAIRMAN. Do you show where this 300,000 and 500,000 are located ?
Mr. FLOETE. Are they both from the Air Force ?
The CHAIRMAN. Senator Cordon, I was late getting in here but I wanted to call attention to the fact that Mr. Floete is a former very prominent citizen of my own State of Nebraska.
Senator CORDON. I am happy you were able to get here and make that statement. I would not have known it. Nebraska is entitled to have the fact known.
Mr. Chairman, I wonder if you will take care of this matter and carry through until I can go and report to an atomic energy hearing so that they can get a quorum.
The CHAIRMAN. Certainly. I will preside from here.
The CHAIRMAN. You were in the process, I think, of possibly identifying in a general way that 300,000 and 500,000 acres
Mr. FLOETE. To what extent can the Air Force give that information?
Mr. COMAROW. We can identify the places which we plan to release which make up the figure of 300,000. However, the figure of 500,000, which the Army plans to release, if I may speak for the Army on that point, has not yet reached Washington, as I understand it, and those plans are still in the Alaskan theater. Therefore, we are not able to identify the places which make up the total of 500,000.
The CHAIRMAN. That will be perfectly agreeable to the committee. But when you can, I wish you would give us the information, at least in a general way, as to where that land is located. It may make some considerable difference in considering the statehood bill. You understand, of source, this is all based on the proposed legislation to make Alaska a State.
Mr. FLOETE. A large amount is very rough tundra or very rough mountainous land. For instance, there are a million and a half acres, approximately, in one of these ownerships that is a bombing range, that I understand probably does not have any value for any other purpose.
I think it might be helpful if the Air Force would tell something of the area they are giving back and some information as to their larger items of ownership. I think the Air Force feels that there are only 2 points where they have lands that might have some commercial value or farming value, totaling only about 14,000 acres.
Would you mind giving us some information on that general picture?
Mr. COMAROW. The Air Force plans to return these installations: Cape Air Force Base
Senator CLEMENTS. Would you point that out on the map?
The CHAIRMAN. Just point out the approximate location on the map. Is it down in the Aleutians?
Colonel JOSEPH. The Cape Air Force Base is down in the Aleutians, down near the tip.
Mr. FLOETE. How many acres are involved there?
Clear Air Force Auxiliary Field, 33,933 acres.
The CHAIRMAN. That is in the general vicinity of Fairbanks.
Mr. COMAROW. Thornbrough Air Force Base, in the Aleutians, 3,400 acres; Willow Air Force Auxiliary Field, 651 acres of public domain, and 320 acres owned in fee. Mr. FLOETE. How far is that from Anchorage ? Colonel JOSEPH. About 50 miles.
Mr. COMAROW. Chernofski storage site. That is 2,885 acres. Barter Island Radio Station, 4,500 acres, up in the northern section.
The other is in the Aleutian chain.
Mr. COMAROW. No, sir. There are the stations pending for return. They do make up, I am sorry, I misunderstood you, approximately 300,000 acres.
The CHAIRMAN. All of them are rather small comparatively speaking. Does that total up close to 300,000?
Colonel JOSEPH. Yes, sir.
Mr. COMAROW. In reading the Thornbrough figure I read the amount listed in the public domain, which is 3,400. We have also at that installation 255,675 acres on permit from the Navy.
The CHAIRMAN. That is a Navy withdrawal, then?
The CHAIRMAN. Do we have representatives of the Navy here this morning, Mr. Floete?
Mr. FLOETE. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. Would they have anything to say about that two hundred and fifty-five thousand-odd acres?
Commander KEATING. We have no plans for using it. When we turned it over to the Air Force, we were finished with it.
Colonel JOSEPH. As a matter of fact, the Navy has returned the land.
The CHAIRMAN. I think the committee would be tremendously interested, Mr. Floete, if you or some of the men here could give us a little detail as to the acreage that you expect to release in the vicinity of the developed areas. Take, for instance, Anchorage. I have been up there 2 or 3 times and I was up there not too long ago. It appeared to me that there was considerable land in the vicinity of Anchorage that was under military reservation. Of course, there must be a reason but it appeared to me that there was considerable land that might be released and placed upon the tax rolls.
Mr. FLOETE. I think the Army is principally interested since they own Fort Richardson.
Colonel Waugh. The Army's activity around the Anchorage area is principally located at Fort Richardson. Fort Richardson has 67,296 acres controlled by the Army. The Army has no plans at this time to give up any of that acreage. Fort Richardson is a permanent Army garrison and has a strength of approximately 16,000 troops. There will be a regimental combat team stationed there all the time. That unit will utilize all the weapons that an infantry division utilizes except the heavy artillery, and they need that land for a maneuver area and the danger impact area.
The CHAIRMAN. Delegate Bartlett, you may be able to point some things out in here.
Delegate BARTLETT. There was a point in question concerning the Fort Richardson and Elmendorf reserves before the committee, and Senator Cordon was interested in it.
Is the area you spoke of, Colonel, identified to your knowledge as military reserve-well, I do not suppose it would be. I wonder if I could direct your attention to this chart which is identified as M. R. 5971048, on the Bureau of Land Management atlas. There seems to be some questions to what this particular area was being used for and how large it is.
Colonel Waugh. I cannot identify that particular area; no, sir. Can you, Mr. Cantrel? Mr. Cantrel is from the Engineers Section of the Department of the Army.