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Of course, Mr. Davenport and myself got the full benefit of it in the line of destruction as far as the agricultural end is concerned. However, at the present time I do not know what to do in regard to keeping cows, because of the fact that my fences have been destroyed, my pastures destroyed, my chickenhouse is partly hanging over the bank of the creek.

Senator Ives. How large a dairy have you?

Mr. Gary. I have 10 at the present time. In May I sold 29 and I have 10.

I feel very hard about this thing, because that is my home, and to see your soil just being washed down the stream isn't a very pleasant thing, together with the building loss we have to sustain. We have no way of recovering that, as I see, under any law. Insurance would help, but what good would insurance be if we are standing in the path of another flood coming along in the next 6 or 8 weeks.

Senator Ives. As has been pointed out time and again, this whole problem takes on a three-fold aspect. First, of course, is flood control. That is the first thing of basic importance. The next thing is that you cannot prevent all floods by flood control. You may some, but that will not stop all of them. They will not be as bad if food control is proper, but you will still have a certain minimum number of floods. And the next thing is civil defense to look after the situation when you get a flood. Then comes your insurance to make sure your losses are covered.

Mr. Gary. That is right. But I have been working with the Soil Conservation Service for the last 12 years. A survey was made several years ago at about the time the Catskill devastation occurred at Pine Hill, which was completely covered. I know I myself worked 2 weeks with the Corps of Engineers at that time, together with our own group.

The thing has been dormant ever since.

But flood control of a permanent nature is what we need on some of those little flash streams. Unlimited amounts of money have been lost by these floods which could have been corrected, in my estimation, if flood control had been in effect.

The Venoy Kill, which originates within about 8 miles of my property, has a tremendous watershed scope. All that water must empty right through my property and Mr. Davenport's to enter the Rondout. The Rondout has grown tremendously in brush, trees, and everything, through lack of something; we don't know what.

Of course, I understand it is going to cost millions of dollars. But what are we going to do—sit idly by and see the thing all go down the stream? Or can something be done?

Senator Ives. That is the test of flood control itself and all the projects—whether the savings that will accrue from the construction of the projects will exceed the cost. That is one of the reasons for the slow progress in taking care of this matter because that has to be figured out by the Army engineers.

Mr. Gary. Well, may I make one more statement. After Diane, the Army engineers came in and they tried to alleviate the blocks in the stream. They went through quite a bit of work, probably sensibly done. But I know, from my own personal viewpoint, that we could have been saved a lot of destruction if the work had been properly done, even on a temporary basis, at the time of Diane.

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We have lived along this stream for a number of years, and we know the meandering way this stream goes and the amount of destruction it causes. While we will admit that a larger volume of rain fell, I do not see why we should have neglect on the part of the Army engineers for bottlenecking the stream on the connecting land between myself and Mr. Davenport.

Senator Ives. In that connection, may I ask whether the job done then was done with the idea of further completion! It was not completed, was it? As I understand, it was temporary; was it not?

Mr. Gary. That is right.

Senator Ives. They left it that way; is that it? They were not expecting another flood.

Mr. Gary. They left, and it was exposed for another flood by not eliminating the bottleneck at least 500 yards down the stream further, which would have saved Mr. Davenport's 12 to 15 acres and mine. That is what makes it so grievous on my part. I feel there was negligence on somebody's part. They say they are limited, and so forth. That is true.

Senator Ives. They expected to come back and complete it; did they not?

Mr. Gary. It sort of died a natural death day by day. It was a day-by-day lingering. As I understand Mr. Allen, who has the purse strings under his control in civil defense, came in, and they moved out and left us that way. They came back at the last flood and did the very same thing over again, with one exception. Now the stream is through our property and that is where it is going to stay. That doesn't leave us in a very good position in the event of another flood. Only an act of God can tell when that will happen.

I would very sincerely like to see something done with regard to eliminating that condition.

Senator LEHMAN. May I say that together with a great many of my colleagues in Congress, I have always been a great believer in flood control. I think we have been very niggardly in the Federal Government in voting appropriations for it. I am not sure whether it is the law or regulations that provides that the Corps of Engineers cannot recommend a flood-control project the cost of which is greater than the demonstrable saving in damage in the future.

The Chief of the Corps of Engineers explained to us that many of the flood-control projects which are very worthwhile from an individual standpoint would not qualify under that law or regulation. He also testified, and I want to mention this again because I think it is important for people to know, that even the projects that have already been approved by the Corps of Engineers as necessary or worthwhile, at the present rate of appropriations will take 22 years to construct. That is a long time to wait. I think people should understand that.

Mr. Gary. I do not know what to say, other than I would sincerely like to see something done to get us a little bit off the hook in that respect, as far as sitting on pins and needles every times it rains. We know we may go down the stream the next time.

Senator LEHMAN. Thank you very much.

Mr. Mayor, you referred to the cost of a policy. What did that cover? Did that cover real property or real and personal property!


Mayor GLUSKER. You just spoke, Senator Lehman, about the economics of flood control. I happened to discuss that proposition with General Herron when he visited Ellenville. It seems to me the argument is fallacious in one sense. You speak economically, and yet you cannot assess the value of a life if you save it. He indicated to me that Congress is now in a position where they might not look at a 1-to-1 equalization of economy, but look in relation to the lives they might save.

With regard to what Mr. Gary said, I am not quite acquainted as to the condition that existed down there. But I have publicly said that if it was not for the work that the Army engineers did in the village of Ellenville, I do not think we would be sitting here today. So, so far as the village of Ellenvile is concerned, we feel the Army's work was very worthwhile in what they did, even though it was of a temporary nature. Of course, Mr. Gary's proposition might be other than that. Just one other thing. Mr. Evans, who is the head

Mr. Evans, who is the head of the New York State flood control, has been a frequent visitor to Ellenville. He has assured me that on a State level both he and Governor Harriman are doing everything possible to expedite a plan to be submitted to Congress as soon as they convene. Senator LEHMAN. I agree


you for the reasons you mentiond. That is why I made this little talk about telling your story to more people. They do not understand it. The more people who know this, the more chance we will have.

Senator Ives. There is another side to this question of flood control and flood-control projects which is not always realized by those people who need it badly—that is, the people whose property is being destroyed by putting in these dams.

Right adjacent to my county there is another county where the Unadila River flows. Some of you may know that. It is between Chenango and Oswego. It is contemplated putting a flood-control project down there at Mount Upton which will back up about 12 miles, destroying some of the most fertile soil in New York State. The cost of the dam and all the property they will have to take will be over $19 million.

These people not only will be without homes but will have no place to go that is at all like the place they were forced out of. At the same time the question arises as to whether the folks below the dam will be benefited to the extent of $19 million at any one time or over a period of time.

There is that side of the question that has to be considered also.

I get their viewpoint, too. After all, people do not like to be forced out of their homes. They do not like to have their property destroyed for this. It is very hard to sell this idea to these people that are being affected that way. So you have that side of it to be considered.

Perhaps if you could talk to some of your neighbors whose property might be destroyed by these flood-control dams—I wish they could come here and see some of the destruction that has occurred as a result of not having these dams.

Mr. SPRAGUE. Senator Ives, just one more thing. During the testimony this morning, I noticed both you and Senator Lehman are quite anxious to know what the activity of the SBA has been in these areas. I would like to have Mr. Kaiser, who is civil defense coordinator in the town of Wawarsing, and who also has been attorney for loans for the SBA, say a couple of words.

Mr. KAISER. My name is Charles Kaiser. I am a resident of the village of Ellenville and I am director of civil defense in the township of Wawarsing, which includes the village of Ellenville.

My purpose initially in coming over here was, as purely a private citizen, to ask for some form of flood insurance for people who might want it, and to lend whatever weight my word might have toward its accomplishment. Also to ask for our community of Ellenville and the town of Wawarsing a permanent program of flood control by diking, dams, or whatever might become necessary.

I would like to add to what Mayor Glusker has said—the fact that if it had not been for the prompt action of the Army engineers, I don't think either our municipal communities as such or the citizens of the community could have a fforded the cleanup job that was done by them.

I am very much interested in insurance, flood insurance for individuals, and also in a permanent diking program in Ellenville.

As I sat here and listened to some of the testimony, I noticed that we broadened out a little bit from that narrow scope, and I would like to say this: I have been the closing attorney for the SBA in the Ellenville vicinity. At the time of or shortly after the August flood there were representatives of the SBA in the Ellenville area for approximately a month, assisting people in making out applications correctly, seeing that they were processed and sent forward.

There were some people, either by reason of laxness or otherwise, that failed to avail themselves of the services of those individuals when they were present. However, I know by talking to those people who were there that there were a series of 8 or 10 SBA loans received and processed. I believe 4 of those have been closed at the present time; the others have not, but they are in the process of being closed. Those that are not closed have not been closed because people have been a little remiss in bringing their papers in or cooperating in getting them closed.

As a matter of fact, there is a lady here this afternoon who owns a very sizable garage business, and who has been very gravely hurt twice by floods--and incidentally, her SBA loan is being closed in my office later this afternoon, and she may testify here to that effect.

That has been the history. They have moved along pretty good actually. As far as their policies are concerned, we think they have met what the people have asked for. They have endeavored in every way possible, our experience has been, to cut redtape and to make amendments when we ran into problems that were somewhat insurmountable in order to assist in closing the loans.

I would also like to point out that I am attorney and an officer of two local banking institutions. This morning I heard someone mention the fact that, after their homes had been destroyed on which there were mortgages, that they were then faced with borrowing over again and paying off the original mortgage they had. One of the institutions for which I am attorney lost three complete houses oli which we had mortgages at the time, and with the approval of the New York State Banking Department we took back a deed for that property and gave them a satisfaction of their mortgage, thereby canceling their mortgage debt.

That is what can be done with the cooperation of an institution that wants to cooperate with citizens who also want to cooperate.

As to those persons who suffered partial loss, we have given them mortgage loans in an amount sufficient to completely rehabilitate their property, if they have requested it, and we have extended their maturity to such a point that their monthly payment does not exceed the monthly payment they were required to pay prior to their loss.

I don't know very much else that I would have to add, except that perhaps later this afternoon you will hear this lady's story.

But I do think that I would like to again stress the necessity for flood insurance and for some form of diking and flood protection in our community.

Senator Ives. I have no questions.
Senator LEHMAN. Thank you very much, indeed.

Senator Ives. I want to say this, though. I think this group has contributed mightily to our understanding of this problem.

Senator LEHMAN. They certainly did. Mr. Thayer.

Mr. THAYER. Senator, I would like to say this. It seems to me that the people in our life and times that have the least seem to live right next to streams. I don't know why it turns out that way. But the hardest hit people in our area, the ones that suffered the most, seem to have been the people with the least resources. I think it is true in factory towns and manufacturing areas, that along the streams, where the damage is worst, you will find the people that need the help the most when the disaster is over.

Of course, the farmers are not to be classed as poor people, but they yet hit very hard also. It seems to me there has to be some sort of insurance that people can get, up to a certain point, that they can get it within reason and have it, so that they know when they go to bed at night they won't be wiped out.

But, you see, the people in the smaller homes have a lot of children, and when the water hits them, they have nothing left. While they have a job, they do not have the credit to go out and reestablish themselves. But if they could buy some little insurance policy, at least they could get part way back after the flood is over. I feel very strongly that something should be done for the person who has the least means, so that he could protect himself a little bit, because when his home goes, he has nothing left.

Senator LEHMAN. Except the mortgage. I fully agree.
(The following was subsequently received for the record :)

ELLENVILLE, N. Y., December 23, 1955.
Re Floods-August and October 1953

United States Senate, Washington, D. C. DEAR SENATOR LEHMAN: As a result of the disastrous floods of August 19, and October 15, 1955, the town board of the township of Wawarsing, Ulster County, N. Y., has passed an official resolution recommending that permanent flood-control legislation be enacted in order that flood-control work can be carried on in this area.

As supervisor of the township of Wawarsing I am herewith attaching a copy of said resolution, and would ask that you devote every effort within your power to assist our area in securing the needed Federal legislation.

Any comments or additional information which may be needed in regard to this area will receive my prompt attention. With kindest regards,

DONALD A. SPRAGUE, Supervisor, Town of Wawdrsing.

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