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been submitted to and approved by the Secretary of War, or to excavate or fill, or in any manner to alter or modify the course, location, condition, or capacity of the channel of said navigable waters of the United States, unless approved and authorized by the Secretary of War: Provided, That this section shall not apply to any bridge, bridge-draw, bridge piers and abutments the construction of which has been heretofore duly authorized by law, or be so construed as to authorize the construction of any bridge, draw-bridge, bridge piers and abutments, or other works, under an act of the legislature of any State, over or in any stream, port, roadstead, haven, or harbor, or other navigable water not wholly within the limits of such State.
SEC. 3. That all wrecks of vessels, and other obstructions to the navigation of any port, roadstead, harbor, or navigable river, or other navigable waters of the United States, which may have be permitted by the owners thereof or the parties by whom they were caused to remain to the injury of commerce and navigation for a longer period than two months, shall be subject to be broken up and removed by the Secretary of War, without liability for any damage to the owners of the same.
SEC. 4. That it shall not be lawful for any person or persons to take possession of or make use for any exclusive purose, build upon, alter, deface, injure, obstruct, or in any other manner impair the usefulness of any sea-wall, bulkhead, jetty, dike, levee, wharf, pier, or other work built by the United States for the preservation and im provement of any of its navigable waters, or boundary marks, tide-gauges, surveyingstations, buoys, or other established marks, nor remove for ballast or other purposes any stone or other material composing such works.
SEC. 5. That every person, persons, or corporation offending against the provisions of this act shall, for each and every such offense, forfeit and pay a penalty of two hundred and fifty dollars, besides such other sum as may be found, in any action for the recovery of the penalty or penalties incurred under this act to be the expense of making good the damage incurred or of removing to a proper place the things deposited in violation of this act, such penalties to be recovered by action in the name of the United States in any district court within whose jurisdiction such offense shall be committed, or in any district wherein the defendant may be found, said action to be instituted by the district attorney for such district at the instance of any person complaining.
SEC. 6. Any damage for injury done to any of the property of the United States mentioned in section four of this act by any vessel shall be a lien upon such vessel, her machinery, apparel, and furniture, the payment of which may be enforced by the United States in a suit instituted in the admiralty court of the district wherein said injury was done, or ia the district where said vessel may be found.
SEC. 7. That it shall be the duty of officers and agents having the supervision, on the part of the United States, of the works in progress for the preservation and improvement of said navigable waters, and, in their absence, of the United States collectors of customs and other revenue officers, to enforce the provisions of this law by giving information to the district attorney of the United States for the district in which any violation of any provision of this act shall have been committed.
Under sections 9 and 10 of the river and harbor act of 1888, persons or corporations owning or controlling bridges over navigable waters of the United States, obstructing the free navigation of said waters, were notified in twenty-nine instances to so alter the bridges as to render navigation through or under them free, easy, and unobstructed, and in each case a reasonable time was prescribed within which such alteration is to be made.
Section 3717 of the Revised Statutes requires that "whenever the Secretary of War invites proposals for any works, or for any material or labor for any works, there shall be separate proposals and separate contracts for each work, and also for each class of material or labor for each work."
The restrictions imposed by the section in a certain class of cases operate injuriously. For instances, it not infrequently happens that appropriations of small sums are made for improvements which may be grouped within certain bounds or regions of no great extent, such as the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay, or the sounds of North Carolina, ete. As the law now stands, each individual improvement must be advertised and contracted for separately, though the work be the same in all, say dredging. A bidder in proposing for each work must do so without any regard to the other works in the region. He may be the ENG 89- -2
lowest for one work but not the lowest for any other, and he is awarded the contract for the one work only, of course. To get his plant and force to the region and remove it therefrom costs just as much for one work as for several, and his price for each work, to make him secure, must be such as will provide for this transportation of plant in addition to the cost proper of doing the work.
In such cases considerable economy would result, and more work could be done at each point appropriated for, if the restrictions imposed by the statute were removed. The restrictions might still remain where the nature of the work is essentially different and the improvements are not in the same region of country.
South Pass of the Mississippi River.-During the fiscal year ending June 30, 1889, the channel has been maintained as required by law, except from December 28, 1888, to January 4, 1889, both dates inclusive. Section 5 of the river and harbor act of August 11, 1888, authorizes the Secretary of War to make such rules and regulations for the navigation of the South Pass of the Mississippi River as to him shall seem necessary or expedient for the purpose of preventing any obstruction to the channel and injury to the works, and prescribes certain penalties for violations of rules and regulations made by him in pursuance of the act. Rules and regulations were made by the Secretary of War, and published in newspapers and widely distributed. There have been numerous violations of these rules and regulations, and the parties have been indicted by the grand jury. It is understood that the attorneys for the defense maintain that while Congress undoubtedly had authority to establish the rules and regulations, the power could not be delegated, and therefore the rules and regulations established by the Secretary of War are unconstitutional. The decision of the United States circuit court in the matter has not yet been reached.
In view of these facts the United States attorney for the eastern district of Louisiana recommended that no action be taken in the last violation of the rules and regulations reported until a decision of the court is reached, which recommendation was concurred in by the Attorney General.
The following draught of a bill is submitted with the recommendation that Congress be requested to act upon it in order to secure the objects desired:
AN ACT to prevent any obstructions to the navigation of the South Pass of the Mississippi River, and any injury to the works therein constructed.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That for the purpose of preventing any obstruction to the navigation of the South Pass of the Mississippi River, and any injury to the works therein constructed, the following rules and regulations are hereby established:
1. Steam-vessels navigating the South Pass are required to reduce their speed to not exceeding ten miles per hour, and from the pilot's station at Picayune Bayou to the sea end of the jetties the speed shall not exceed six miles per hour.
2. All vessels anchoring in the pass shall take position near the eastern bank of the pass above a point marked by a post painted white, and below the island at the head of the pass; and vessels so anchoring shall put out such extra moorings as may be necessary to prevent their being blown athwart the channel and thus endangering the navigation of the pass, whenever required to do so by the United States Inspecting Officer of the works for the improvement of the pass.
3. No master or other person in command of a vessel drawing more than 12 feet of water, shall enter the jetty channel from sea with such vessel until after a descending vessel which has previously entered said channel from above has passed to sea, and likewise no such vessel descending the river shall enter the channel at the head of the pass until after an ascending vessel, which shall have passed the head of Goat Island, has passed through the entrance at the head of the pass.
4. All vessels discharging or waiting to discharge ballast at Port Eads must be moored to the bank by lines, and no vessel shall discharge ballast into the Gulf of
Mexico within a distance of five miles from the sea ends of the jetties; nor shall ades or other refuse matter which may be liable to cause a shoaling or filling up of South Pass be dumped therein.
5. The dredge-boat G. W. R. Bayley shall have the exclusive right of way over all Vessels navigating South Pass while she is at work therein, and all vessels in passng her must be governed by her signals; she shall give the usual steam-whistle sighal for passing to her port or starboard, and this shall be responded to and obeyed by the passing vessel on the order of its master or pilot.
6. Tow boats with tows are not permitted to go down the pass after dark, but must anchor above the head of the passes till after daylight.
The term "South Pass" as herein employed shall be construed as embracing the entire extent of channel between the upper ends of the works at the head of the pass and the outer sea end of the jetties at the entrance from the Gulf of Mexico.
SEC. 2. Any person who shall willfully violate any of the above enumerated rules or regulations shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and on conviction thereof shall pay a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars, and undergo an imprisonment not exceeding six months at the discretion of the court.
ATLANTIC COAST AND GULF OF MEXICO.
IMPROVEMENT OF RIVERS AND HARBORS IN THE STATES OF MAINE AND NEW HAMPSHIRE.
Officer in charge, Lieut. Col. Jared A. Smith, Corps of Engineers. 1. Lubec Channel, Maine.—This channel lies between the eastern extremity of Maine and Campo-Bello Island, belonging to the Dominion of Canada. Originally the channel was but 5 feet in depth at mean low water, and but 2 feet at low water of spring tides.
The original project of improvement adopted in 1879 proposed widening and deepening the channel by dredging, where necessary, from the Narrows to the Western Bar Beacon, so as to give a width of 200 feet and a depth of 12 feet at mean low water, or 9 feet at low water of spring tides. This part was completed in 1883.
The present project contemplates increasing the width to 275 feet, and to 300 feet in the bends. Length of channel 24 miles.
The amount expended upon this improvement to June 30, 1888, was $148,989.97.
The resulting improvement to navigation has been great, as it has made a channel 12 feet deep at mean low water for a width varying from 200 to 278 feet, besides a stone jetty at the narrows to direct the current.
The channel, however, is not straight, and tidal currents are very strong so that the thoroughfare is not as well adapted to the necessities of the commerce as could be desired.
During the last fiscal year there has been expended the sum of $503.26. This expense was for preparatory work, as the appropriation of August 11, 1888, became available too late to commence dredging before spring.
Under the last appropriation a contract has been let for continuing the work, and under this contract the improvement will be fully completed as heretofore approved:
July 1, 18-8, amount available....
Amount appropriated by act of August 11, 1888...
July 1, 18-9, amonnt expended during fiscal year, exclusive of liabilities outstanding July 1, 1888....
July 1, 1889, amount covered by existing contracts...
July 1, 1889, balance available.....
(See Appendix A 1.)
2. Moose-a-bec Bar, Maine.-The project for this improveme adopted in 1881, and modified in 1888, the object being to give channel 300 feet wide, and a depth of 14 feet at mean low wat the bar, and to remove ledges near and in the channel to a d 16 feet.
The entire amount expended to June 30, 1888, was $31,841.77 The dredged channel was made 200 feet wide in 1885. To c the present project there remains the widening of channel to 3 and removal of ledges.
Under the appropriation of August 11, 1888, a contract has to widen the channel by dredging.
During the last fiscal year there has been expended $791.87. Fifty cubic yards of rock were removed from Steamboat Le no benefit will result until its entire removal is completed.
The appropriation asked is to be applied to the removal of le completing small jetty to check the currents.
July 1, 1888, amount available, including amounts covered by existing contracts..
Amount appropriated by act of August 11, 1888
July 1, 1889, amount expended during fiscal year, exclusive of
liabilities outstanding July 1, 1888.
July 1, 1889, outstanding liabilities..
July 1, 1889, amount covered by existing contracts.
July 1, 1889, balance available......
Amount (estimated) required for completion of existing project.. Amount that can be profitably expended in fiscal year ending June 30, 1891 Submitted in compliance with requirements of sections 2 of river and harbor acts of 1866 aud 1867.
(See Appendix A 2.)
3. Narraguagus River, Maine.-The obstruction to naviga sisted in a bar extending from the anchorage known as "De near Fickett's Point, to deep water, the shoalest part havi feet at extreme low water, and only 54 feet at mean low wate The project for improvement adopted in 1886 consists in d channel 11 feet deep at low water to the steam-boat landing Point, and thence 9 feet deep to the deep hole, or anchorage; of the channel to be 200 feet throughout, except in the rea steam-boat wharf, where it is to be increased to 300 feet. The amount expended to June 30, 1888, was $10,000. As channel 11 feet deep was dredged to the lower steam-boat wl tance of 5,000 feet, of which 3,500 feet was 50 feet wide, and t ing distance 75 feet wide.
The lower wharf can now be reached at all ordinary low st this is of little value, as steamers must wait for high water b can turn around to return.
During the last fiscal year no work has been carried on. appropriation of August 11, 1888, a contract has been let t the dredging in the channel.
The contractor is required to commence work early in J complete it on or before December 31, 1889.
The appropriation asked is to be expended in completing t The improvement being at a point distant from commerci
and the amount for its completion being small, the sum should be provided in a single appropriation.
Amount appropriated by act of August 11, 1888
July 1, 1889, amount expended during fiscal year, exclusive of liabilities outstanding July 1, 1888.
July 1, 1889, amount covered by existing contracts
July 1, 1889, balance available....
(Amount (estimated) required for completion of existing project.
Amount that can be profitably expended in fiscal year ending June 30, 1891 15,000.00 Submitted in compliance with requirements of sections 2 of river and
harbor acts of 1866 and 1867.
(See Appendix A 3.)
4. Breakwater from Mount Desert to Porcupine Island, Maine.-The anchorage and landing at Bar Harbor is entirely exposed to storms and seas setting in from southerly directions.
Under requirements of the river and harbor act of August 5, 1886, an examination of the harbor was made, and a report, with plan and estimate for a breakwater from Mount Desert to Porcupine Island, was submitted by the engineer officer in charge. (Page 483. Report of Chief of Engineers, 1887.)
Congress having appropriated $50,000 for commencing the work, the plan submitted has been adopted.
A contract has been entered into for the delivery of stone in the breakwater.
The contractors have been making active preparations for carrying on the work, opening a quarry and obtaining vessels.
The delivery of stone will be commenced in July and will be continued under the contract as far as available funds permit.
Amount appropriated by act of August 11, 1888 ....
July 1, 189, amount expended during fiscal year, exclusive of liabilities outstanding July 1, 1888...
July 1, 1889, amount covered by existing contracts..
July 1, 1889, balance available
(Amount (estimated) required for completion of existing project..
Amount that can be profitably expended in fiscal year ending June 30, 1891 100,000.00 Submitted in compliance with requirements of sections 2 of river and
harbor acts of 1866 and 1867.
(See Appendix A 4.)
5. Bagaduce River, Maine.-The river and harbor act of August 5, 1886, required an examination or survey of the Bagaduce River, Maine. A report, with estimate of cost of works considered necessary, was submitted by the engineer officer in charge, February 2, 1888. (See Report of Chief of Engineers for 1888, page 401.)
The project adopted for the improvement consists of deepening the channel to give a width of 100 feet and a low-water depth of 6 feet from South Penobscot to Bridge's Point. This includes dredging and removing rocks. The project also includes removing a small amount of rock in Johnson's Narrows.
By act of August 11, 1888, Congress appropriated $3,000 for the improvement. As this small sum could not be judiciously expended in a Fay to accomplish any beneficial, result, work on the improvement has been suspended to await the further appropriations.