Text: H.R.3332 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)

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Introduced in House (07/24/2009)


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[Congressional Bills 111th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 3332 Introduced in House (IH)]

111th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 3332

To establish the National Commission on Intergovernmental Relations to 
facilitate the fullest cooperation and coordination between all levels 
                             of government.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                             July 24, 2009

  Mr. Connolly of Virginia (for himself and Mr. Lance) introduced the 
 following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Oversight and 
                           Government Reform

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To establish the National Commission on Intergovernmental Relations to 
facilitate the fullest cooperation and coordination between all levels 
                             of government.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This act may be cited as the ``Restore the Partnership Act of 
2009''.

SEC. 2. ESTABLISHMENT.

    There is established a permanent bipartisan commission to be known 
as the ``National Commission on Intergovernmental Relations'' (in this 
Act referred to as the ``Commission'').

SEC. 3. DECLARATION OF PURPOSE.

    In order to facilitate the fullest cooperation and coordination 
between all levels of government in an increasingly complex society, it 
is essential that a commission be established to give continuing 
attention to intergovernmental issues. It is intended that the 
Commission, in the performance of its duties, will--
            (1) bring together representatives of Federal, State, and 
        local governments for the consideration of common problems;
            (2) provide a forum for discussing the administration and 
        coordination of Federal aid and other programs requiring 
        intergovernmental cooperation;
            (3) give critical attention to the conditions, controls, 
        and oversight involved in the administration of such Federal 
        programs; and
            (4) encourage discussion and study during the early stages 
        of emerging public challenges that are likely to require 
        intergovernmental cooperation.

SEC. 4. MEMBERSHIP.

    (a) Number and Appointment.--The Commission shall be composed of 30 
members, as follows:
            (1) 6 appointed by the President of the United States, 3 of 
        whom shall be officers of the executive branch of the 
        government, and 3 private citizens, each of whom shall have 
        experience or familiarity with relations between the levels of 
        government.
            (2) 3 appointed by the President of the Senate, who shall 
        be Members of the Senate.
            (3) 3 appointed by the Speaker of the House of 
        Representatives, who shall be Members of the House.
            (4) 4 appointed by the President from a panel of at least 8 
        Governors submitted by the National Governors' Association.
            (5) 4 appointed by the President from a panel of at least 8 
        members of State legislative bodies submitted by the National 
        Conference of State Legislatures.
            (6) 4 appointed by the President from a panel of at least 8 
        mayors submitted jointly by the National League of Cities and 
        the United States Conference of Mayors.
            (7) 4 appointed by the President from a panel of at least 8 
        elected county officers submitted by the National Association 
        of Counties.
            (8) 2 tribal officials appointed by the Secretary of the 
        Interior from a panel of at least 4 submitted by the National 
        Congress of American Indians.
    (b) Political and Geographical Composition.--
            (1) The members appointed from private life under paragraph 
        (1) of subsection (a) shall be appointed without regard to 
        political affiliation.
            (2) Of each class of members enumerated in paragraphs (2) 
        and (3) of subsection (a), 2 shall be from the majority party 
        of the respective houses.
            (3) Of each class of members enumerated in paragraphs (4), 
        (5), (6), and (7) of subsection (a), not more than 2 shall be 
        from any 1 political party.
            (4) Of each class of members enumerated in paragraphs (5), 
        (6) and (7) of subsection (a), not more than 1 shall be from 
        any 1 State.
            (5) At least 2 of the appointees under paragraph (6) of 
        subsection (a) shall be from cities with a population of less 
        than 500,000.
            (6) At least 2 of the appointees under paragraph (7) of 
        subsection (a) shall be from counties with a population of less 
        than 50,000.
            (7) 1 of the appointees under paragraph (8) of subsection 
        (a) shall be from a gaming tribe and 1 shall be from a non-
        gaming tribe.
    (c) Terms.--
            (1) In general.--The term of office of each member of the 
        Commission shall be 2 years. Members shall be eligible for 
        reappointment. Except as provided in paragraph (2), members 
        shall serve until their successors are appointed.
            (2) Termination of service in official position from which 
        originally appointed.--Where any member ceases to serve in the 
        official position from which originally appointed under section 
        3(a), his or her place on the Commission shall be deemed to be 
        vacant.
            (3) Vacancies in membership.--Any vacancy in the membership 
        of the Commission shall be filled in the same manner in which 
        the original appointment was made; except that where the number 
        of vacancies is fewer than the number of members specified in 
        paragraphs (4), (5), (6), and (7) of section 3(a), each panel 
        of names submitted in accordance with the aforementioned 
        paragraphs shall contain at least 2 names for each vacancy.

SEC. 5. ORGANIZATION OF COMMISSION.

    (a) Initial Meeting.--The President shall convene the Commission 
not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act at such 
time and place as the President may designate.
    (b) Chairman and Vice Chairman.--The Commission shall designate a 
Chairman and a Vice Chairman from among members of the Commission.
    (c) Quorum.--13 members of the Commission shall constitute a 
quorum, but 2 or more members, representing more than 1 of the class of 
members enumerated in section 4(a), shall constitute a quorum for the 
purpose of conducting hearings.

SEC. 6. DUTIES OF COMMISSION.

    The Commission shall--
            (1) engage in such activities and make such studies and 
        investigations as are necessary or desirable in the 
        accomplishment of the purposes set forth in section 2;
            (2) consider, on its own initiative, mechanisms for 
        fostering better relations between the levels of government;
            (3) make available technical assistance to the executive 
        and legislative branches of the Federal Government in the 
        review of proposed legislation to determine its overall effect 
        on all levels of government;
            (4) recommend, within the framework of the Constitution, 
        the most desirable allocation of governmental functions, 
        responsibilities, and revenues among the levels of government;
            (5) recommend methods of coordinating and simplifying tax 
        laws and administrative policies and practices to achieve a 
        more orderly and less competitive fiscal relationship between 
        the levels of government and to reduce the burden of compliance 
        for taxpayers; and
    (6) submit an annual report to the President and the Congress on or 
before January 31 of each year.
The Commission may also submit such additional reports to the 
President, to Congress or any committee of Congress, and to any unit of 
government or organization as the Commission may deem appropriate.

SEC. 7. POWERS AND ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.

    (a) Hearings and Sessions.--The Commission or, on the authorization 
of the Commission, any subcommittee or members thereof, may, for the 
purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act, hold such hearings, 
take such testimony, and sit and act at such times and places as the 
Commission deems advisable. Any member authorized by the Commission may 
administer oaths or affirmations to witnesses appearing before the 
Commission or any subcommittee or members thereof.
    (b) Cooperation by Federal Agencies.--Each department, agency, and 
instrumentality of the executive branch of the government, including 
independent agencies, is authorized and directed to furnish to the 
Commission, upon request made by the Chairman or Vice Chairman, such 
information as the Commission deems necessary to carry out its 
functions under this Act.
    (c) Executive Director.--The Commission shall have power to appoint 
and remove an Executive Director. The Executive Director shall be paid 
at the rate of basic pay for level III of the Executive Schedule. Such 
appointment shall be made solely on the basis of fitness to perform the 
duties of the position and without regard to political affiliation.
    (d) Staff.--Subject to such rules and regulations as may be adopted 
by the Commission, the Executive Director shall have the power--
            (1) to appoint, fix the compensation of, and remove such 
        other personnel as he deems necessary; and
            (2) to procure temporary and intermittent services to the 
        same extent as is authorized by law.
    (e) Applicability of Other Laws to Employees.--Except as otherwise 
provided in this Act, persons in the employ of the Commission under 
subsections (c) and (d)(1) shall be considered Federal employees for 
all purposes.
    (f) Maximum Compensation of Employees.--No individual in the employ 
of the Commission under subsection (d)(1) shall be paid compensation 
for such employment at a rate in excess of the highest rate provided 
for under the General Schedule.

SEC. 8. REIMBURSEMENT.

    Members of the Commission shall be entitled to reimbursement for 
travel, subsistence, and other necessary expenses incurred by them in 
the performance of their duties as members of the Commission.

SEC. 9. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

    There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be 
necessary to carry out the provisions of this Act.

SEC. 10. RECEIPT OF FUNDS; CONSIDERATION BY CONGRESS.

    The Commission is authorized to receive funds through grants, 
contracts, and contributions from State and local governments and 
organizations thereof, and from nonprofit organizations. Such funds may 
be received and expended by the Commission only for purposes of this 
Act. In making appropriations to the Commission, Congress shall 
consider the amount of any funds received by the Commission in addition 
to those funds appropriated to it by Congress.
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