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STATE OF CALIFORNIA,
DEPARTMENT OF STATE. I, Frank C. Jordan, secretary of state of the State of California, do hereby certify that I have carefully compared the transcript, to which this certificate is attached, with the record on file in my office of which it purports to be a copy, and that the same is a full, true, and correct copy thereof.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and have caused the great seal of the State of California to be affixed hereto this 23d of February 1939. (SEAL]
FRANK C. JORDAN,
Secretary of State. By CHAS. J. HAGERTY,
SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION 4
Adopted in senate January 17, 1939.
J. A. BEEK,
Secretary of the Senate. Adopted in assembly January 24, 1939.
JACK CARL GREENBURG,
Chief Clerk of the Assembly. This resolution was received by the Governor this 25th day of January 1939, at 2 o'clock p. m.
RICHARD C. OLSON, Private Secretary of the Governor.
Senate Joint Resolution No. 4-Relative to memorializing the Congress of the United
States to refuse enactment of legislation which would becloud the sovereign rights of the State of California in its submerged lands
Whereas, upon the formation of the United States of America, the States, as independent sovereignties, reserved to themselves all the right, title and interest in and to the submerged lands and tidelands bodering upon their respective territories and, with the expenditure of public funds, have devoted such lands to harbor developuments and other State purposes, or through grants or arrangements made with their municipalities and public agencies and with their citizens have devoted said lands to other public and private uses, and such sovereign rights of the States have never heretofore been questioned; and
Whereas, legislation has been introduced in the Congress of the United States, particularly Senate Joint Resolution No. 24, introduced by the Honorable United States Senator, Gerald P. Nye herein it is asserted that the Federal Government possesses the title to or holds an interest in submerged lands and tidelands bordering upon the various States of the Union, and it is proposed to direct the Attorney General of the United States to institute legal actions in the courts to litigate such asserted titles or inerests; and
Whereas, any such litigation will becloud the rights and title of the respective States, prejudice their progress in developing such lands for State and local uses, both public and private, endanger existing investments and impair future financing of local projects on such lands, and the enactment of such legislation is, in the opinion of this Legislature, undesirable and contrary to the public interests; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate and Assembly of the State of California, jointly, That the Legislature of the State of California respectfully urges and petitions the Congress of the United States to refuse enactment of either Senate Joint Resolution No. 24 or any other bill or resolution which may similarly seek to establish the asserted claim of the Federal Government to any title or interest in such submerged lands or tidelands of the State of California, other than such lands which may have been heretofore expressly granted it by this State or under its authority; and be it further
Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate be, and he hereby is, directed to transmit copies of this resolution to the President of the United States, the Vice President, and to the Senators and Representatives of the State of California in the Congress.
ELLIS E. PATTERSON,
President of the Senate. PAUL PEEK,
Speaker of the Assembly. Attest: (SEAL)
FRANK C. JORDAN,
Secretary of State. (Endorsed.) Filed in the office of the Secretary of State of the State of California Jan. 31, 1939, at 9 o'clock a. m. Frank C. Jordan, Secretary of State. By Chas. J. Hagerty, Deputy.
THE SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR,
Washington, April 3, 1939. Hon. SAM HOBBS,
House of Representatives. MY DEAR MR. HOBBS: I have received your letter of March 25 with a letter dated March 24 to you from Hon. Thomas M. Eaton and a copy of your reply of March 25, all relating to my letter of December 22, 1933, to Mr. Olin S. Proctor, 521 East Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach, Calif.
For your information and to complete the record before the House Committee on the Judiciary, I attach hereto copies of the complete correspondence which occasioned my letter of December 22, 1933, as follows:
(1) Letter dated October 15, 1933, with attachments, to the Secretary of State from Mr. Proctor.
(2) Letter dated November 22, 1933, to the Secretary of State from Mr. Proctor.
(3) Reference memorandum of December 4, 1933, from the Acting Secretary of State to the Secretary of the Interior, enclosing items (1) and (2) above.
When my letter of December 22, 1933, was written, it was my opinion that the statements therein and the conclusions expressed were proper in the light of the claim presented by Mr. Proctor. The statement quoted by Mr. Eaton is not inconsistent with my attitude on H. J. Res. 176. In my letter of March 27, 1939, addressed to Senator Alva B. Adams, chairman of the Committee on Public Lands and Surveys, with reference to S. J. Res. 92, which superseded S. J. Res. 24 and is identical to H. J. Res. 176, I expressed my views on the proposed legislation as follows:
"Inasmuch as the resolution paves the way for a judicial determination of the right of the Government to the oil in the submerged lands off the coast of California and conserves that oil for the use of the Navy, should the courts determine that the United States has a right thereto, I have no objection to the amended proposed resolution.”
It should be noted that any naval petroleum reserve which may be created by the proposed legislation is subject"to any superior right, title, or interest of any person, partnership, association, corporation, or of the State of California, or any municipality, or local subdivision of that State
which may be recognized and established in the judicial proceedings hereinafter authorized.”
It is my opinion that there is no valid objection to a determination of title as contemplated in the pending resolution. A prompt and final removal of any cloud on the title by appropriate judicial proceeding should be acceptable to all interests, Federal, State, and individual.
Pursuant to his informal request, I am sending a copy of this letter and the attachments therewith to Congressman Eaton. The correspondence submitted with your letter is returned. Sincerely yours,
HAROLD L. ICKES,
Secretary of the Interior. (Enclosures.)
RIGHT TO PETROLEUM DEPOSITS IN THE BED OF THE
PACIFIC OCEAN LITTORAL TO CALIFORNIA
THURSDAY, MARCH 23, 1939
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, D. C. The subcommittee met at 10 a. m., Hon. Francis E. Walter (chairman of the subcommittee), presiding.
Mr. WALTER. The committee will please be in order. Gentlemen, I wonder if you have have arrived at any plan with respect to the presentation of witnesses.
Mr. TOLAN. Mr. Chairman, witnesses are appearing here representing various States. The next witness, the one to speak first this morning, is a representative from the State of Louisiana; then a representative from Florida, and then from California. Then I understand there are some representatives here from the port authorities.
. Mr. WALTER. I wonder if it would be possible for one person to present the position of one State, from that State.
Mr. TOLAN. I doubt it very much. But they all understand very clearly that we must finish these hearings today, and I think that each and every one of them will be very brief.
Mr. WALTER. And have you tried to come to an agreement about avoiding going over the same matter?
Mr. TOLAN. Yes.
Mr. HOBBs. Mr. Chairman, I wanted to ask permission to add something to my presentation of yesterday. I omitted in my statement of the departments who were favoring this resolution, to mention the National Resources Committee. I want to ask the committee's permission to quote a brief passage from that report and add it to my opening statement. [This appears at p. 19 of this hearing.]
Mr. WALTER. Without objection, permission is granted.
Mr. WALTER. Mr. Tolan, who is the first witness to appear this morning?
Mr. TOLAN. A representative from the State of Louisiana, Mr. Loret. Mr. WALTER. Mr. Loret, we shall be glad to hear you at this time.
STATEMENT OF JOSEPH A. LORET, SPECIAL ASSISTANT ATTORNEY
GENERAL OF LOUISIANA
Mr. LORET. May it please the committee.
The assistant attorney general of Texas has so ably presented the law on this subject that I am not going to go into it again before you gentlemen this morning, except to touch on a few points on which I want to answer arguments that were made by the proponents yesterday.
I have a brief in support of our position that I will offer to the committee.
Also, yesterday there was some question raised in the committee about the international-law development of the 3-mile-limit theory. Not long ago I wrote an article entitled "Louisiana's 27-Mile Maritime Belt” for the Tulane Law Review, which takes up that question in detail. It is rather a short article, and I offer that also. It might interest the committee in that respect.
Mr. WALTER. The committee is glad to receive the documents referred to.
Mr. LORET. Now, when we consider this question that is before the committee, some of us lose sight of the relation between the States and the Federal Government. The Federal Government is an association of the States. It is given only such powers as the States wish to surrender to it. Outside of that all of the balance of the sovereignty, power, and jurisdiction is in the States.
The territory in which these two sovereignties exercise their jurisdiction, with the exception of the District of Columbia and other Territories, is exactly the same territory that the States exercise their jurisdiction in.
Mr. WALTER. Do you feel that the position of Louisiana with respect to the submerged coastal lands is the same as that of the Thirteen Colonies ?
Mr. LORET. It did not come in in the same way; but due to the fact that the jurisprudence is to the effect that the States that came in later have the same rights as the Original Thirteen, in that way I say Louisiana's position is the same. It did not acquire it in the same way, but I say it has the same rights that the Original Thirteen Colonies had. I discuss that matter in the brief at length.
As I say, the territory of the two sovereignties is the same. Within that territory the States exercise certain powers. Within that territory the Federal Government exercises certain powers. There is no territory that is Federal and not State. If it is part of the United States, it is part of a State. If it is part of a State, it is part of the United States.
So we cannot have any marginal belt of sea along the coast of the States that is in the United States but not in a State. Of course, I say with the qualification that we may have Territories. We do not have any more in continental United States now except Alaska.
Now, this is the division between them of certain of the attributes of sovereignty. The United States Government exercises certain of those attributes and the State exercises certain of those attributes.
There is also some confusion in the minds of some as between sovereignty and jurisdiction and ownership. Of course, we base our claims to the oil under the sea bottom within the maritime belt on a