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The International Joint Commission, United States and Canada, was created by the treaty between the United States and Great Britain, signed January 11, 1909, the object of which is “to prevent disputes regarding the use of boundary waters and to settle all questions which are now pending between the United States and the Dominion of Canada involving the rights, obligations, or interests of either in relation to the other or to the inhabitants of the other, along their common frontier, and to make provision for the adjustment and settlement of all such questions as may hereafter arise”.
The Commission consists of six members, three members appointed by the President of the United States and three appointed by His Britannic Majesty on the recommendation of the Government of Canada. It was organized in 1911, adopted rules of procedure, and established permanent offices in Washington and Ottawa. It has jurisdiction over all cases involving the use or obstruction or diversion of boundary waters between the United States and Canada, of waters flowing from boundary waters, and of waters at a lower level than the boundary in rivers flowing across the boundary.
Under article IX of the treaty, the International Joint Commission also is constituted an investigatory body for the purpose of examining into and reporting upon any questions or matters of difference arising along the common frontier that shall be referred to it from time to time, whenever the Government of the United States or the Government of Canada shall request that such questions or matters of difference be so referred.
In the 29 years the Commission has been in operation it has disposed of a number of important questions involving the use of boundary
waters and has investigated others. Some of these questions have involved the interests of States, others of municipalities, and still others of corporations and individuals.
Under article X of the treaty, any questions or matters of difference arising between the high contracting parties involving the rights, obligations, or interests of the United States or Canada, in relation either to each other or to their respective inhabitants, may be referred for decision to the International Joint Commission, it being understood that on the part of the United States such action will be by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, and on the part of Great Britain with the consent of the Governor General in Council of the Dominion of Canada.
The treaty provides that the expenses of the Commissioners be paid by their respective Governments and that the expenses of the Commission be shared equally by the contracting parties. The first appropriation for this Government's share in the expenses of the Commission was provided in an act of Congress approved June 25, 1910 (36 Stat. 766). For the fiscal year ending June 30, 1941 the sum of $19,500 was appropriated by Congress for the expenses of the Commission. This act also appropriated an additional amount in the sum of $48,500 for necessary special or technical investigations in connection with matters which fall within the scope of the jurisdiction of the International Joint Commission (54 Stat. 190). There is a provision in this act to the effect that the Commissioners on the part of the United States shall serve without additional compensation. However, the Congress on June 27, 1940 (54 Stat. 650) appropriated $7,500 for an additional amount for salaries and expenses, including also the salary of one Commissioner on the part of the United States. On April 1, 1941 Congress appropriated the further sum of $2,000 for salaries and expenses, fiscal year 1941 (55 Stat. 72).
INTERNATIONAL FISHERIES COMMISSION, UNITED STATES AND
CANADA (Convention of March 2, 1923, supplanted by convention of May 9, 1930, revised
by convention of January 29, 1937 80)
Edward W. Allen, of Washington, Secretary;
Department of the Interior.
Treaty Series 701; 43 Stat. 1841; Treaty Series 837; 47 Stat. 1872; Treaty Series 917; 50 Stat. 1351.
L. W. Patmore, Chairman;
The International Fisheries Commission, composed of four members, two appointed by the United States of America and two by Canada, was established pursuant to the convention of March 2, 1923 and was continued by article III of the convention of May 9, 1930 between the United States and Canada. The purpose of these conventions was the renewal and preservation of the halibut fishery of the northern Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea. The convention of 1930 was revised by the convention of January 29, 1937, which broadened the powers and increased the responsibilities of the Commission. Its powers and duties under articles I and III of the convention of 1937 are as follows: (1) To suspend or change the closed season provided for when it finds
after investigation such suspensions or changes are necessary; (2) To permit, limit, regulate, and prohibit in any area or at any
time when fishing for halibut is prohibited, the taking, retain
ing, or landing of halibut caught incidental to other fishing; (3) To divide the convention waters into areas; (4) To limit the catch of halibut to be taken from each area within
the season during which fishing for halibut is allowed; (5) To prohibit the departure of vessels from any port or place, or
from any receiving vessel or station, to any area for halibut fishing, after any date when in the judgment of the International Fisheries Commission the vessels which have departed
for that area shall suffice to catch the limit set for that area; (6) To fix the size and character of halibut-fishing appliances to be
used in any area ; (7) To make such regulations for the licensing and departure of ves
sels and for the collection of statistics of the catch of halibut as it shall find necessary to determine the condition and trend of the halibut fishery and to carry out other provisions of this
convention; (8) To close to all halibut fishing such portion or portions of an area
or areas, as the International Fisheries Commission finds to be
populated by small, immature halibut;
of the halibut in convention waters;
The Commission in the execution of these duties has divided the convention waters into areas; has limited the catch from each area;
required the registration of all halibut vessels and the making of statistical returns with respect to the catches and areas of origin; has modified the closed season provided for by the convention; and has closed certain nursery areas. These regulations have been duly approved by both Governments and are now in effect; they provide for a limitation of the catch until the halibut banks have been properly restocked.
The Commission maintains a scientific staff which is constantly engaged in the gathering of statistics concerning the migrations of the fish investigated and in the study of the biological problems involved in their replacement and abundance, with a view to the adoption of further regulatory measures. It also issues circulars in non-technical terms, informing fishermen, vessel-owners, and dealers concerning the results of the Commission's investigations and other matters relating to the halibut and to the regulation of the fishery.
The United States and Canada share equally in the expenses of the Commission. The first appropriation for this Government's share of the expenses was provided by an act of Congress approved January 22, 1925 (43 Stat. 756). For the fiscal year ending June 30, 1941 the sum of $28,000 was appropriated by Congress for the purpose of paying these expenses (54 Stat. 191).
INTERNATIONAL PACIFIC SALMON FISHERIES COMMISSION
(Convention of May 26, 1930; act of August 25, 1937 81)
B. M. Brennan, of Washington, Chairman;
Department of the Interior.
Tom Reid, Secretary;
The supply of sockeye salmon in the Fraser River system has in recent years been greatly depleted, and the convention of May 26, 1930 between Canada and the United States of America is a recognition by the parties thereto that the protection, preservation, and extension of these fisheries are of interest to both countries as a source of wealth which should be restored and maintained. The International Pacific
Treaty Series 918; 50 Stat. 1355, 755.
Salmon Fisheries Commission, established in 1937 pursuant to the convention of 1930, is composed of six members, three appointed by each Government.
The waters covered by the convention are the Fraser River and its tributaries, the Georgia Strait, and the Juan de Fuca Strait, together with certain territorial waters and high seas westward from the entrance of the Juan de Fuca Strait.
The first duty of the Commission is to investigate the natural history of the salmon fisheries and to make recommendations to the two Governments as to the best measures for the regulation of the fisheries with a view to conservation and restoration. The Commission is empowered to investigate hatchery methods and spawning-ground conditions; to conduct sockeye-salmon fish-culture operations in the convention waters; to improve spawning grounds, to construct and maintain hatcheries and rearing ponds necessary for the propagation of sockeye salmon in these waters, and to stock any such waters with sockeye salmon by such methods as it may deem desirable; to recommend to the Governments of the United States and Canada that the obstructions to the ascent of salmon in the convention waters be removed or otherwise overcome; and to make to the two Governments an annual report of any investigation made or action taken in connection with these various duties.
The expenses of the Commission are shared equally by the United States and Canada. For the fiscal year ending June 30, 1941 the sum of $35,000 was appropriated by Congress for the payment of the expenses of the United States in connection with this Commission (54 Stat. 191).
The Secretary of State and the Minister of Canada, Mr. Loring Christie, exchanged notes on February 29, 1940 establishing an In
e available to
** See II Department of State Bulletin, 273 (Mar. 2, 1940); Executive Agreement Series 182.