In 2274, following the discovery of the intact Hoover Dam in the Mojave Wasteland by NCR Rangers and Army scouts, Aaron Kimball, the President of the New California Republic, ordered the NCR Army to occupy the Dam and bring it online. However, when the military contingent arrived at the Dam, they were greeted by a large garrison of tribals (the future Three Families) and Securitrons. Following negotiations, Robert House transferred control of the Dam to the New California Republic in exchange for a number of concessions, enshrined in what's called the Treaty of New Vegas.
Notably, the New California Republic would likely have attempted a forceful takeover of both New Vegas and Hoover Dam, if it wasn't for the threat from the Legion. Attempting to wage war with House would leave them vulnerable to a Legion offensive.
The principal element of the Treaty is New California Republic's recognition of House's sovereignty over the New Vegas Strip, effectively making it one of the first, if not the first international treaty in the post-War world. In return, the Republic was granted rights to establish military bases at Hoover Dam and McCarran Airport, as well as additional military outposts and camps as needed. As a sign of good faith, House also provided facilities for an NCR Embassy on the Strip.
Administration and maintenance of Hoover Dam is left to the New California Republic, which is legally permitted to send 95% of the electricity and water produced by the Dam to the home states in New California and various local projects of the Republic, such as the NCR sharecropper farms. The remaining 5% is allotted to the New Vegas Strip and its casinos.
The Treaty also regulates Strip governance. Law enforcement is carried out jointly by Securitrons (policing civilians visiting the Strip) and the NCR Military Police (handling NCR troopers on furlough, who are exempted from Securitron jurisdiction). An interesting provision is the prohibition of any attempt by the Republic to limit or otherwise prevent access by NCR citizens and troops to the Strip.
- Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p.458: "Important Dates"
"2274 NCR forces move east and occupy Hoover Dam. The NCR reluctantly signs the Treaty of New Vegas recognizing Mr. House and his stewards, the Three Families, as the rightful owners of the Strip. The Strip opens for business."
(Behind the Bright Lights & Big City)
- The Courier: "I'd like to know more about the NCR."
Dennis Crocker: "I can provide a quick history lesson, if that's what you're looking for. In 2274, President Kimball sent the NCR army into the Mojave in force, with the objective of occupying and repairing Hoover Dam. Rangers and army scouts had confirmed that the dam was basically unoccupied and could be restored to an operable condition. Upon arriving at the dam, however, they discovered that a large force of tribals and robots had occupied it. This was our introduction to the Three Families, the Securitrons, and, of course, Mr. House. Using his Securitrons as intermediaries, Mr. House called for parlay. He claimed his forces had occupied Hoover Dam in order to safeguard it for our arrival. And that he was ready to turn it over to us, so long as we could agree to terms. Those terms became the Treaty of New Vegas. The Treaty recognized Mr. House's sovereignty over the Strip and granted us rights to establish military bases at the Dam and McCarran Airport. The NCR is legally permitted to send 95% of the electricity produced by the dam to our home states. The remaining 5% goes to the Strip. The treaty actually makes it illegal for the NCR to prevent its citizens, or troops on furlough, from visiting the Strip. Once on the Strip, our citizens are subject to arrest - or punishment - by House's Securitrons, though that's a rare occurrence. Our troops enjoy a different status. It's illegal for the Securitrons to take action against them. Of course, it's also illegal for our troops to carry firearms on the Strip, so there isn't much trouble they can get into. Our military police does an adequate job of keeping the troops on furlough in line. I don't envy them that task. The embassy was established a few weeks after the Treaty was signed. Basically Mr. House handed us a dumpy little building he had no interest in renovating. I'm the third ambassador to hold this post. And the first, I think, to accept its limitations. My predecessors had ambitions of engineering the annexation of the Mojave. They thought they'd convince Mr. House to join up. I've never even spoken to the man - or whatever he is. Maybe the situation will change once we've beaten the Legion once and for all."
The Courier: "Go on."
Dennis Crocker: "Now we mostly just keep track of the NCR citizens and troopers around and make sure they don't get in trouble, but that's Captain Pappas' job. I keep myself busy with paperwork and reports that get sent back to the NCR. It's mostly busy work, but every once in awhile, we make progress."
(Dennis Crocker's dialogue)
- The Courier: "Wasn't the NCR's army big enough to defeat your Securitrons and the Three Families?"
Robert House: "Indeed it was - and still is. But not without taking significant casualties. Would Kimball and Oliver have traded the lives of hundreds of soldiers for absolute control of Hoover Dam? Oh yes. They weren't afraid of me, they were afraid of Caesar - that attacking me would leave them vulnerable to a Legion offensive. And so they negotiated. Not out of the kindness of their hearts, as they try to make it seem. Because the calculus of power left no other choice."
(Robert House's dialogue)
- The Courier: "What were the terms of your treaty with the NCR?"
Robert House: "NCR forces were permitted to occupy Hoover Dam and establish a military base at McCarran Airport. Well, it used to be one. They recognized my sovereignty over the Vegas Strip and agreed to supply electricity and water once their engineers repaired the dam. Written into the treaty were provisions that the NCR do nothing to prevent its soldiers and civilians from visiting the Strip. That's how I harnessed the NCR to my endeavor. Their occupation has been the engine of my growing economy."
(Robert House's dialogue)