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Army, the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Agriculture, and to the Senators and Representatives in the Congress of the United States."
The foregoing resolution was unanimously adopted at the 67th Annual International Convention of the Supreme Lodge of the World, Loyal Order of Moose, in the city of Philadelphia, Pa., September 1, 1955.
RAY V. GIBBENS, Supreme Governor. Attest:
GEO. EUBANK, Supreme Secretary.
NEW YORK, N. Y., September 14, 1955. Hon. HERBERT LEHMAN,
United States Senate, Washington, D.C. DEAR SENATOR : As a member of the Democratic Party, I have always followed with great admiration your initiative in all fields of human activity, especially whenever the welfare of the country is concerned.
In this connection, I remember having recently read in some newspaper about the interest you are showing for the protection of the public against the consequence of heavy calamities, such as the very recent floods have proved to be. In respect to such protection, may I express herewith the following idea :
From my long insurance experience, I know very well that flood damages are not yet insurable with any company, including London Lloyds. When 2 years ago northern Italy, around the Po region, was hit by a similar flood, I went to London, in order to find out whether some kind of coverage might be available in that market, unfortunately without any result. Although the attitude of the London market was at that time a very definite one, it is not excluded that toward the United States the attitude may be different now.
There is, however, so little chance that some result might be obtained in this respect, that I prefer to disregard for the time being such a step, and to put aside any political factor.
On account of the wealth of this country of ours, I believe, however, that something could be done by ourselves in order to protect the public.
My humble suggestion would be, namely, to create a fund through additional stamps of, let's say, 1 cent, or less, to apply in a compulsory way on all the mail, both for inland and foreign destination, or, if more feasible, to increase in the same proportion actual mail rates. Useless to say that, if once the principle is accepted, a similar increase might be imposed also to all cables.
With these funds, the Government might create a special reinsurance company to which private insurance companies should have recourse, when writing flood risks for their clients, through extension of the already existing "extended” and "additional extended” coverage at the rates which will be established by experts on the usual statistical basis. Of course, having such a reinsurance company at its disposal, the direct insurance enterprises should be compelled to allow such an extension to their clients.
Should you believe that my idea is worth further attention, I will be very pleased to discuss the matter anywhere at your convenience.
May I add that I have been for over 40 years connected with one of the largest insurance groups in Europe, the Assicurazioni Generali of Trieste, having been one of the managers of the company before coming to this country, where I am acting as an insurance broker.
l'seless to say that I am not planning any material interest for myself, and that I would be only happy if I could be in some way of service to the public of the country which has become my new fatherland. With kindest regards.
ARTHUR F. COEN.
OCTOBER 18, 1955. Senator HERBERT H. LEHMAN,
Washington, D. C. DEAR SENATOR LEHMAN: I am chairman of the board of Cosmopolitan Life Insurance Co., of Memphis, Tenn., and director as well as a member of the executive committee of the American Surety Co., of New York. I wish to specify that in no way at all should the opinion expressed herein be misconstrued as a statement as represented of the above companies.
I wish to offer a plan with reference to food prevention and insurance in the United States. The financing and construction of such a plan is quite simple. I desire no publicity or compensation, and offer my services only on this basis.
To give you an idea of how the plan would work : Dikes being so constructed as to add scenic beauty in all flood-danger areas. In some cases, they could even be used as public roads or toll roads. The financing could be done by all insurance companies participating on a percentage of their capital and surplus funds in flood licensed areas. All States that have any construction of this type would participate in the plan. The States that participate in the plan would have compulsory flood insurance for the protection of their own property values and lives. The financing project, which would run into many billions of dollars, would return premiums paid back on a pro rata basis after the loss experiences are fully examined by an actuarial committee.
This is only to give you an idea of the plan I have in mind, which I feel certain will be a step toward the elimination of lives and property losses that our Nation will continue to suffer unless immediate steps are taken to rectify this condition.
If you feel that you and some of your aids would like to discuss this matter further with me, I would be happy to meet at your convenience.
Please bear in mind that even though I am connected with the insurance companies in the capacities, as stated in this letter, the plan I offer is of my own and in no way connected with these companies at all. Yours truly,
WHITE PLAINS, N. Y., October 31, 1955. Hon. HERBERT H. LEHMAN,
United States Senate, Washington, D. C. DEAR SIR: I understand that hearings are in progress concerning Governmentsponsored disaster insurance to bring such insurance within the means of the average-income citizen. It is my sincere hope that you will use every means in your power to see that such an insurance program is brought to pass.
During the hurricane last year, the small home I own on the waterfront in Rhode Island sustained considerable damage. Despite the fact that I have carried insurance ever since the place was built (and this year premiums for this same insurance have been raised considerably), there was no financial reimburse ment because the damage was caused by waves and rising water. Such damage should certainly be included in disaster insurance.
Many citizens are similarly affected, and your aid in putting through the abovementioned program will be appreciated. Very truly yours,
FRANK F. CORYELL.
MCALLEN, TEX., September 23, 1955. Hon. HERBERT LEHMAN, Senate Office Building,
Washington, D. C. DEAR SENATOR LEHMAN : I note in the September 20 issue of the Wall Street Journal (p. 9) that you are heading a subcommittee to look into the possibility of Federal Government participation in disaster insurance.
Nothing in the forementioned news story, nor in any others I have read. mentions that any such proposed legislation should encompass disasters occasioned by freezing temperatures. Freezing weather, for instance, hit this area (the Rio Grande Valley) in 1951 and seriously damaged in some cases, and actually destroyed in many more instances, the citrus groves for which this valley is famous. Insurance against such loss was not then available, nor is it obtainable at the present time.
Thousands of groveowners in this region lost virtually everything they owned as a result of the 1951 freeze. Insurance would have been their salvation,
It is my feeling that the public interest dictates the creation of a Federal program designed to protect the people against the ravages and financial ruin of all natural disasters.
I wish you and your subcommittee the utmost success in considering and finding a solution to this tremendously important and timely problem, Respectfully,
DWIGIT S. JAMES.
MAPLEWOOD, N. J., September 2, 1955. Hon. HERBERT H. LEHMAN, United States Senator of the State of New York,
Washington, D. C. DEAR SENATOR LEHMAN: I have notice that you have realized the necessity of citizens of our country get some protection against such catastrophhes which we have just encountered ; namely, floods which are not protected by insurance.
Might I suggest that to establish a fund for Federal Government insurance, the following plan be considered.
When income taxpayers make their returns for 1955 to start the ball rolling, every taxpayer just add $1 for this particular fund or purpose. If I am correct there are 68 million income taxpayers, which would make a good starting fund. If the Government would match this and plan was continued until $5 billion will have been accumulated, it seems to me that everybody could be protected from further catastrophes of this nature.
Would greatly appreciate an acknowledgment of this letter and your opinion of my views Yours very truly, one of your ardent admirers,
FRANK A. SOEMER.
CITY OF HAYWARD,
Hayward, Calif., December 9, 1955, Senator THOMAS H. KUCHEL, Senate Office Building, Washington, D. C.
(Attention : Mr. Warren B. Francis, executive secretary.) DEAR SENATOR KUCHEL: We have received from CAA regional administrator in Los Angeles notification that his office will excute an instrument of release of six areas within Hayward's airport upon receipt of legal descriptions therefor. We are hastening to furnish them.
This is most welcome advice for this city, and for the area served by the airport, since the development, which the release will enable, will produce very considerable revenues for the airport as well as expand the base of taxable valuation on which both the city and this county depend. Further, the development promises new and permanent employments for people in the community and urgently needed improvements of airport facilities.
We are most grateful for the time and effort which your office has devoted in this city's behalf, and trust that you will take pleasure also in knowing of the enduring and increasing benefits which will follow this decision on our proposal. Yours sincerely,
JOHN R. FICKLIN, City Manager.
NEW VERNON, N. J., October 31, 1955. Hon. HERBERT H. LEHMAN,
Senate Office Building, Washington, D. C. DEAR SIR: As a resident of Saltaire on Great South Beach, Long Island, I write to heartily commend your introductory measure for insurance against flood and hurricane damage. It is certainly most urgently needed by all of us on that exposed island. In real gratitude, Most sincerely,
Mrs. VIRGINIA PATTERSON.
SYRACUSE, N. Y., October 17, 1955. Hon, Senator LEHMAN.
DEAR SIR: I see in the papers you are in favor of food insurance, I have property that is near a small creek, and I have tried to get flood insurance here, in Syracuse, but no company will give it the me. I would appreciate anything you can do, to get relief for us property owners. Wishing you the best of health and happiness. I remain,
J. A. MURPHY.
HIAWATHA, KANS., November 12, 1955. Hon. HERBERT H. LEHMAN,
United States Senator, New York, DEAR SENATOR: Having learned through the columns of the Post-Times Herald that you are preparing a bill to provide federally guaranteed flood damage insurance and since the Kansas City Star, the most influential daily in the Middle West, recently came out editorially in favor of the enactment of such a law, I wrote the inclosed letter approving such a measure.
If such a measure can be enacted in the next session of the 84th Congress, it will go a long way toward making it possible to take practical measures of flood prevention here in the low-gradient areas of the Missouri Valley where there is practically no risk of human life but only a question of property damage.
I regret that I cannot be on the floor of the House to participate in the discussion of the issues with which I am so familiar, but the call of Ike to send back a Republican Congressman in this traditionally Republican district was too much to overcome.
With the greatest admiration for the work you are doing and with kindest personal regards, I am sincerely,
HOWARD S. MILLER.
(Congressional Record, proceedings and debates of the 83d Cong., 1st sess.)
TUTTLE CREEK RESERVOIR, KANS. Speech of Hon. HOWARD S. MILLER, of Kansas, in the House of Representatives,
Monday, February 9, 1953 The SPEAKER. Under previous order of the House, the gentleman from Kansas [Mr. Miller) is recognized for 10 minutes.
(Mr. Miller of Kansas asked and was given permission to include in his remarks a letter from a constituent.)
Mr. MILLER of Kansas. Mr. Speaker, I have introduced into this Chamber H. R. 2730. The purpose of this bill is to abandon the flood-control project for the construction of the Tuttle Creek Reservoir, Kans., which was authorized by the Flood Control Act, approveci June 28, 1938.
H. R. 2730 is intended to save the taxpayers of the United States from fifty to one hundred millions of dollars in cold cash. I shall prove absolutely in a few words that the passage of this bill will do just that.
In considering the merits of the proposed Tuttle Creek Dam we must bear in mind that soil conservation and flood prevention measures on the uplands of the Blue River Basin are absolutely essential to the welfare of the Nation. That such measures must and will be taken in the near future and the sooner the better. We must consider also that such measures properly taken, will prevent, to a large degree, flooding of the lowlands. As to what degree, there is some difference of opinion, but it will be at least 50 percent. Some competent engineers assert that this system will result in 100 percent prevention of floods. Experience in the Washita River Valley seems to bear them out. But the proposed Tuttle Creek Dam does not take into account any such contribution by soil conservation measures. Therefore any contributions that may be made, and made they must be, will render useless the Tuttle Creek Dam by just so much. This conclusion is so plain that “even he who runs may read."
Inevitably, within a few years when these upland measures are taken, 50, 75, or perhaps even 100 percent of Tuttle Creek Reservoir will be rendered useless. Mr. Speaker, if this is not a vicious duplication of effort, a useless waste of the taxpayers' money, then I would like to see an example.
In view of these facts would not the Eighty-third Congress be wise to withdraw all unexpended appropriations for the construction of Tuttle Creek Dam, refuse any further appropriation, and abandon entirely authorization for construction until all proper and necessary soil conservation and flood prevention measures have been completed upstream? Congress should in this session appropriate sufficient funds to promote measures of soil conservation and flood prevention in the Blue River Basin with all possible expediency. After such steps have been taken, and this can be done for a fraction of the cost of the proposed Tuttle Creek Dam, we can well discover what flood prevention measures, if any, may be needed on the main channel of the Big Blue River. Many competent engineers assert that there will be no additional steps necessary. I submit, Mr. Speaker, that to rescind authorization of Tuttle Creek Dam is a measure in full accord with the announced purpose of this administration to eliminate all appropriations not presently essential to the economy of the Nation. It is in strict accord with the principles avowed in the platforms of both political parties, to cut expense and reduce taxes in every possible manner.
Mr. Speaker, I have given to this Congress reasons for abandoning Tuttle Creek Dam based on cold, hard, economic facts. There is yet a better reason, based on morality and elementary justice. On these grounds we dare not construct Tuttle Creek Dam. We must not unnecessarily drive 3,000 law-abiding, God-fearing people from their homes. If you, my fellow Congressmen, could go among these people, eat at their tables, worship in their churches, visit in their schools and community activities as I have been privileged to do, there is not a single Member of this Congress who would vote $1 to construct Tuttle Creek Dam until all other measures of flood prevention had been completed. In the interest of economy and a proper regard for humanity this Congress should pass H. R. 2730 or a bill of similar import.
A VIEW ON FLOOD INSURANCE
The Star is certainly right in its stand in favor of Federal Government insurance against flood damage. This would give those whose property is endangered an opportunity to protect themselves against risks which they deliberately take when they erect buildings in the flood plains. This is as it should be. They take the risk and should pay for it. I was impressed by your statement, “Obviously flood control is the best answer but even the wildest dreams do not conceive of dams and levees on a scale to meet all conceivable floods."
Would it not be to the advantage of all of those whose property is liable to destruction because it is on the flood plain, and others who live in the higher areas where the floods originate, could get together and see how their opinions agree?
They should agree on a national policy of flood insurance, on a policy of channel improvement, on a system of levees. They could further agree that no system of flood control can take care of all conceivable floods.
There remains than only one point at issue, namely the best method of flood control. Shall it be by large dams on main streams to impound water after the flood has formed or by dams on outer tributaries to slow the flow and prevent floods?
I have heard members of the Corps of Engineers state that the watershed program would give protection equal to that of big dams on main channels but that this system would require too much time. Insurance against flood damage would neutralize that objection as the insurance would protect while the measures were being taken.
It should be remembered that upstream preventive measures protect everybody from the place where the rain falls to the river's mouth while structures on the main channel protect only those below the structure.
I understand that Senator Lehman of New York is preparing a bill to authorize Federal Government insurance against flood damage. We should all get back of such a measure.
HOWARD S. MILLER,
Former Representative in Congress. MORRILL, KANS.
Senator LEHMAN. This hearing stands in recess until 10 o'clock, Thursday morning in the Federal courthouse in New York City. I hope that you will all be present.
(Whereupon, the hearing was recessed, to be reconvened at 10 a. m., Thursday, November 3, 1955, in the Federal courthouse, New York,