H.R.2578 - Conservation and Economic Growth Act112th Congress (2011-2012)
Summary: H.R.2578 — 112th Congress (2011-2012)
Passed House amended (06/19/2012)
Conservation and Economic Growth Act - Title I: Lower Merced River - (Sec. 101) Amends the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to decrease the length of a segment of the Lower Merced River in California designated as a wild and scenic river.
Revises provisions concerning the water surface level of Lake McClure.
Sets a new boundary at the boundary of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Project No. 2179 as it existed on July 18, 2011.
Title II: Bonneville Unit Clean Hydropower Facilitation Act - Bonneville Unit Clean Hydropower Facilitation Act - (Sec. 203) Declares that, in order to facilitate hydropower development on the Diamond Fork System (Utah), a certain amount of reimbursable costs allocated to project power in the Power Appendix of the October 2004 Supplement to the 1988 Bonneville Unit Definite Plan Report shall be considered final costs, as well as specified costs in excess of the total maximum repayment obligation, subject to the same terms and conditions.
(Sec. 204) States that: (1) this title does not obligate the Western Area Power Administration to purchase or market any of the power produced by the Diamond Fork power plant, and (2) none of the costs associated with development of transmission facilities to transmit power from the Diamond Fork power plant shall be assigned to power for the purpose of Colorado River Storage Project ratemaking.
(Sec. 205) Prohibits any hydroelectric power generation or transmission facility on the Diamond Fork System from being financed or refinanced with any obligation: (1) whose interest enjoys federal tax-exempt status, or (2) which enjoys certain federal tax credits.
(Sec. 206) Directs the Secretary of the Interior to report to certain congressional committees if hydropower production on the Diamond Fork System has not commenced 24 months after enactment of this Act, stating the reasons such production has not commenced, and presenting a detailed timeline for future hydropower production.
(Sec. 208) Prohibits the use of Western Area Power Administration borrowing authority under the Hoover Power Plant Act of 1984 to fund any study or construction of transmission facilities developed as a result of this title.
Title III: Southeast Alaska Native Land Entitlement Finalization and Jobs Protection Act - Southeast Alaska Native Land Entitlement Finalization and Jobs Protection Act - (Sec. 304) Authorizes Sealaska, the regional Alaska Native Corporation for southeast Alaska, subject to certain conditions and restrictions, to select and receive conveyance of its remaining land entitlement under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) from federal land in southeast Alaska that is outside the areas for selection (withdrawal areas) delineated by the ANCSA.
Includes among these lands certain mapped sites that: (1) lie within Tongass National Forest; (2) have traditional, recreational, and renewable energy use value (although no more than 5,000 acres of these may be chosen); or (3) constitute traditional and customary trade and migration routes. Includes, as well, up to 3,600 acres that Sealaska identifies as having sacred, cultural, traditional, or historic significance. Prohibits selection of these sites, however, if they lie within the National Park System. Requires Sealaska to identify all but 360 acres of these sites within 15 years of this Act's enactment. Grants Sealaska nonexclusive easements to certain forest development roads and logging facilities.
(Sec. 305) Requires the Secretary of the Interior to substantially complete the conveyance of land selected by Sealaska from within the mapped sites of Tongass National Forest within two years of their selection.
Prohibits Sealaska from selecting land from the mapped sites, other than trade and migration route land, that lies within a conservation system unit. (A conservation system unit includes any unit of the National Park System, National Wildlife Refuge System, National Wild and Scenic Rivers Systems, National Trails System, National Wilderness Preservation System, or a National Forest Monument.) Gives Sealaska the right to regulate public access across the sacred, cultural, traditional, or historic sites conveyed to it pursuant to this Act. Prohibits any commercial timber harvest or mineral development on lands conveyed to Sealaska pursuant to this Act that are characterized as: (1) sacred, cultural, traditional, or historic sites; (2) traditional and customary trade and migration routes; or (3) sites having traditional, recreational, and renewable energy use value.
Allows existing guiding or outfitting special use permit holders to continue to exercise their rights and privileges, for the remaining permit term and a subsequent ten-year renewal period, on lands conveyed to Sealaska from the mapped sites that lie within Tongass National Forest or that have traditional, recreational, and renewable energy use value.
(Sec. 306) Amends the Tribal Forest Protection Act of 2004 to allow Alaska Native Corporations to enter into agreements with the federal government under that Act regarding their lands that are forested or formerly had vegetative cover and are capable of restoration.
Amends the National Historic Preservation Act to allow an Alaska Native tribe, band, nation or other organized group or community to participate in historic site preservation programs administered on behalf of Indian tribes, including by securing support to manage their own historic preservation sites and programs.
Title IV: San Antonio Missions National Historical Park Boundary Expansion Act - San Antonio Missions National Historical Park Boundary Expansion Act - (Sec. 403) Modifies the boundary of the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park to include approximately 137 acres of additional identified land. Bars the use of condemnation authority by the Secretary for the acquisition of lands and interests under this Act.
Authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to acquire land and interests within the boundary of the Park only by donation or exchange. Prohibits any payment from being made to any landowner in the case of an exchange).
Prohibits the inclusion of any private property within the Park's boundaries without the owner's written consent.
Prohibits anything in this Act, the establishment of the Park, or its management from being construed as creating buffer zones outside of the Park.
Bars an activity or use that can be seen or heard from within the Park from precluding the conduct of that activity or use outside the Park.
Title V: Waco Mammoth National Monument Establishment Act of 2012 - Waco Mammoth National Monument Establishment Act of 2012 - (Sec. 504) Establishes the Waco Mammoth National Monument in Texas as a unit of the National Park System.
(Sec. 505) Authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to enter into cooperative management agreements with Baylor University and the city of Waco, Texas (the city).
Permits the Secretary to acquire by donation only from the city any land or interest in land owned by the city within the proposed boundary of the Monument.
Requires the Secretary, in consultation with Baylor University and the city, to complete a general management plan for the Monument. Provides for the inclusion in such plan of opportunities for involvement by the University, the city, the state of Texas, and other local and national entities in the development of educational programs for the Monument and for the development and support of the Monument.
Prohibits the use of federal funding to pay the costs of: (1) carrying out a cooperative agreement under this Act, (2) acquiring land for inclusion in the Monument, (3) developing a visitor center, (4) operating or maintaining the Monument, (5) constructing exhibits, or (6) developing the general management plan.
Permits the use of non-federal funding to pay any costs that may be incurred by the Secretary or the National Park Service (NPS) to carry out this title.
Prohibits anything in this Act from affecting the eligibility of the Monument for federal grants or other financial assistance for which the Monument would have been eligible had System status not been conferred upon it.
Terminates the designation of the Monument as a unit of the System if federal funding is required for the operation and maintenance of the Monument. Requires any land acquired by the Secretary from the city to revert to the city if such designation is terminated.
Prohibits any private property from being made a part of the Monument without the owner's written consent.
Prohibits anything in this title, the establishment of such national monument, or the management plan from being construed as creating buffer zones outside of such monument.
(Sec. 506) Bars an activity or use that can be seen or heard from within the Monument from precluding the conduct of that activity or use outside the Monument.
Title VI: North Cascades National Park Access - (Sec. 602) Amends the Washington Park Wilderness Act of 1988 to authorize the Secretary of the Interior to adjust the boundaries of the North Cascades National Park and the Stephen Mather Wilderness in Washington state in order to provide a corridor of not more than 100-feet in width along which the Stehekin Valley Road may be rebuilt: (1) outside of the floodplain between mileposts 12.9 and 22.8, (2) within one mile of the route for such Road, (3) within the boundaries of the Park, and (4) outside of the boundaries of the Wilderness.
Requires that the boundary adjustments be such that equal federally owned acreage amounts are exchanged between the Wilderness and the Park. Requires lands in the newly designated wilderness to include lands along the route of the Stehekin Valley Road that are replaced by the reconstruction. Authorizes the Secretary, if such lands contain fewer acres than the corridor, to designate additional federal lands in the Park as wilderness, but bars such designation from exceeding the acreage amount needed to equalize the exchange. Instructs that these additional lands must be selected from lands that qualify as wilderness.
Prohibits anything in this Act from: (1) authorizing the sale or acquisition of any land or interest in land, and (2) being construed as requiring the Secretary to give this project precedence over the construction or repair of other similarly damaged roads in units of the National Park System.
Title VII: Endangered Salmon and Fisheries Predation Prevention Act - Endangered Salmon and Fisheries Predation Prevention Act - (Sec. 703) Amends the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 to authorize the Secretary of the department in which the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is operating to issue one-year permits to Washington, Oregon, Idaho, the Nez Perce Tribe, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation, and the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission for the lethal taking on the waters of the Columbia River or its tributaries of sea lions that are part of a healthy population that is not listed as an endangered species or threatened species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 in order to protect endangered and threatened species of salmon and other nonlisted fish species. Authorizes the Secretary to renew such permits.
Prohibits such a permit from authorizing the lethal taking of more than 10 sea lions. Limits the cumulative annual taking of sea lions each year under all such permits to 1% of the annual potential biological removal level.
Provides that environmental impact statement requirements under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) do not apply with respect to this Act and the issuance of any such permits during the five-year period that begins on this title's enactment.
Authorizes the Secretary to suspend the issuance of such permits if, after five years, lethal removal authority is no longer necessary to protect salmonid and other fish species from sea lion predation.
(Sec. 704) Expresses the sense of Congress that: (1) preventing predation by sea lions, recovery of listed salmonid stocks, and preventing future listings of fish stocks in the Columbia River is a vital priority; (2) permit holders exercising lethal removal authority should be trained in wildlife management; and (3) the government should continue to fund lethal and nonlethal removal measures for preventing such predation.
(Sec. 705) Prohibits anything in this title from being construed as affecting or modifying any treaty or other right of any federally recognized Indian tribe.
Title VIII: Reauthorization of Herger-Feinstein Quincy Library Group Forest Recovery Act - (Sec. 801) Amends the Herger-Feinstein Quincy Library Group Forest Recovery Act (the Act) to extend the term of the pilot forest management project for the Plumas, Lassen, and Tahoe National Forests in California.
Directs the Regional Forester for Region 5, upon initiation of the process of amending or revising land and resource management plans for the pilot project area (the federal lands within the Plumas and Lassen National Forests and the Sierraville Ranger District of Tahoe National Forest designated as available for group selection), to include the preparation of at least one alternative that incorporates the pilot project and area designations, the resource management activities, and other aspects of the Quincy Library Group Community Stability Proposal.
Authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture (USDA) to expand the pilot project area to include all of the National Forest System lands in California or Nevada that lie within the Sierra Nevada and Cascade Province, Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, and Humboldt-Toiyabe and Inyo National Forests. Permits the management of such lands using the same strategy, guidelines, and resource management activities outlined in the Act or developed to meet local forest and community needs and conditions.
Deems those areas that are designated as deferred under the Act, but located in Tehama County, south and west of Lassen Peak, as being designated as available for group selection.
Requires, after FY2012, group selection on an average acreage of .57 percent of the pilot project area land to occur each year of the pilot project.
Repeals the requirement regarding the authorization of appropriations of supplemental funds for the implementation and carrying out of the pilot project.
Title IX: Yerington Land Conveyance and Sustainable Development Act - Yerington Land Conveyance and Sustainable Development Act - (Sec. 904) Directs the Secretary of the Interior to convey to the city of Yerington, Nevada, all interest of the United States in the federal lands located in Lyon and Mineral Counties, Nevada, identified as City of Yerington Sustainable Development Conveyance Lands, subject to the city's agreement and in exchange for consideration in an amount that is equal to their fair market value.
Requires the Secretary to determine the fair market value of the federal land to be conveyed according to the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 and based upon an appraisal.
Requires the development and conduct of activities of the federal land which is conveyed to the city to be subject to all applicable federal laws.
Makes the city responsible for all survey, appraisal, and other administrative costs associated with the conveyance of such lands.
(Sec. 905) Releases the United States from all liabilities or claims of any kind arising from the presence, release, or threat of release of release of hazardous substances, pollutants, contaminants, petroleum products (or derivatives of such products) solid waste, mine materials, or mining related features on the federal land existing on or before conveyance.
Title X: Preserving Access to Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area Act - Preserving Access to Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area Act - (Sec. 1002) Requires the Cape Hatteras National Seashore in North Carolina to be managed in accordance with the Interim Protected Species Management Strategy/Environmental Assessment issued by the National Park Service (NPS) on June 13, 2007, for the Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreational Area until the Secretary of the Interior issues a new final rule that meets the additional restrictions specified below. Bars the imposition of any additional restrictions on pedestrian or motorized vehicular access to any part of the Recreation Area for species protection beyond those in the Interim Management Strategy, other than as specifically authorized pursuant to this title.
(Sec. 1003) Allows the Secretary if, based on peer-reviewed science and after public comment, it is determined that additional restrictions on access to a part of the Recreation Area are necessary to protect endangered species, to only restrict pedestrian and vehicular access for recreational activities for the shortest possible time and on the smallest possible portions of such area.
(Sec. 1004) Prohibits the final rule titled "Special Regulations, Areas of the National Park System, Cape Hatteras National Seashore-Off-Road Vehicle Management" from having any force or effect. Invalidates the April 30, 2008, consent decree filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina regarding off-road vehicle use at the Seashore.
Title XI: Grazing Improvement Act of 2012 - Grazing Improvement Act of 2012 - (Sec. 1102) Amends the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (the Act) to double from 10 to 20 years the period of a term for grazing permits and leases for domestic livestock grazing on public lands or lands within national forests in 16 contiguous western states. Permits the issuance of permits and leases for a period shorter than 20 years (under current law, shorter than 10 years). Allows the issuance of such permits and leases where the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture (USDA) respecting lands within National Forests in the 16 contiguous Western states (the Secretary concerned) determines that the initial environmental analysis under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) regarding a grazing allotment, permit, or lease has not been completed.
(Sec. 1103) Directs that grazing permits or leases issued by the Secretary of the Interior respecting lands under the jurisdiction of the Department of the Interior and grazing permits issued by the Secretary of Agriculture (USDA) respecting National Forest System lands that expire, are transferred, or are waived after this Act's enactment be renewed or reissued under, as appropriate, the Act, Granger-Thye Act, Bankhead-Jones Farm Tenant Act, or California Desert Protection Act of 1994. Continues the terms and conditions (except the termination date) that is contained in such an expired, transferred, or waived permit or lease in effect under a renewed or reissued permit or lease until the Secretary concerned completes the processing of the permit or lease that is the subject of the expired, transferred, or waived permit or lease. (Permits the cancellation, suspension, or modification of such an expired, transferred, or waived permit or lease in accordance with applicable law.) Authorizes the Secretary concerned to renew or reissue such permit or lease that is the subject of the expired, transferred, or waived permit or lease for a 20-year term when the processing has been completed.
Allows exclusion of the renewal, reissuance, or transfer of a grazing permit or lease by the Secretary concerned from the NEPA requirement to prepare an environmental analysis if: (1) such decision continues current grazing management of the allotment; (2) monitoring of the allotment has indicated that the current grazing management has met, or has satisfactorily progressed towards meeting, objectives contained in the land use and resource management plan of such allotment; or (3) such decision is consistent with the concerned Department's policy with regard to extraordinary circumstances.
Gives Secretary concerned the sole discretion to determine the priority and timing for the completion of each required environmental analysis regarding any grazing allotment, permit, or lease based on its environmental significance and on the funding available for such purpose.
Makes NEPA inapplicable to domestic livestock crossing and trailing authorizations and transfers of grazing preferences.
Title XII: Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act - Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act - (Sec. 1204) Amends the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act to: (1) authorize a state to pay up to 90% of the costs of acquiring land for, expanding, or constructing a public target range; (2) authorize a state to elect to allocate 10% of a specified amount apportioned to it from the federal aid to wildlife restoration fund for such costs; (3) limit the federal share of such costs under such Act to 90%; and (4) require amounts provided for such costs under such Act to remain available for expenditure and obligation for five fiscal years.
(Sec. 1205) Shields the United States from any civil action or claim for money damages for injury to, or loss of, property, personal injury, or death caused by an activity occurring at a public target range that is funded by the federal government pursuant to such Act or located on federal land, except to the extent provided under the Federal Tort Claims Act with respect to the exercise or performance of a discretionary function.
(Sec. 1206) Urges the Chief of the Forest Service and the Director of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to cooperate with state and local authorities and other entities to carry out waste removal and other activities on any federal land used as a public target range to encourage its continued use for target practice or marksmanship training.
Title XIII: Chesapeake Bay Accountability and Recovery Act of 2012 - Chesapeake Bay Accountability and Recovery Act of 2012 - (Sec. 1302) Requires the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), in consultation with the Chesapeake Executive Council, the chief executive of each Chesapeake Bay state, and the Chesapeake Bay Commission, to submit to Congress a financial report containing: (1) an interagency crosscut budget for restoration activities that protect, conserve, or restore living resources, habitat, water resources, or water quality in the Chesapeake Bay watershed; (2) an accounting of funds received and obligated by all federal agencies for restoration activities; (3) an accounting from each state of all funds received and obligated from a federal agency for restoration activities; and (4) a description of each of the proposed federal and state restoration activities. Requires: (1) such report to describe only federal restoration activities that have funding amounts of at least $100,000 and state restoration activities that have funding amounts of at least $50,000; and (2) the Director to submit the report no later than 30 days after the submission of the President's annual budget to Congress.
(Sec. 1303) Requires the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop and update, every two years, an adaptive management plan for restoration activities in the Chesapeake Bay waterhsed that includes: (1) a definition of specific and measurable objectives to improve water quality, habitat, and fisheries; (2) a process for stakeholder participation; (3) monitoring, modeling, experimentation, and other research and evaluation practices; (4) a process for modification of restoration activities that have not attained or will not attain such objectives; and (5) a process for prioritizing restoration activities and programs to which adaptive management shall be applied. Sets forth reporting requirements. Requires the Administrator to report annually to Congress on the Plan.
(Sec. 1304) Requires an Independent Evaluator for the Chesapeake Bay watershed, who shall review and report to Congress every three years on restoration activities and the use of adaptive management in such activities. Requires the Evaluator to be appointed by the Administrator from among nominees submitted by the Chesapeake Executive Council.
Title XIV: National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act - National Security and Federal Lands Protection Act - (Sec. 1401) Prohibits the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture (USDA) from prohibiting or restricting activities on federal land located within 100 miles of an international land border that is under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture to prevent all unlawful entries into the United States, including entries by terrorists, other unlawful aliens, instruments of terrorism, narcotics, and other contraband through the international land borders of the United States.
Grants U.S. Customs and Border Protection access to such lands to conduct the following activities: (1) construction and maintenance of roads and fences; (2) use of patrol vehicles and aircraft; (3) installation, maintenance, and operation of surveillance equipment and sensors; and (4) deployment of temporary tactical infrastructure, including forward operating bases.
States that a waiver by the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS) of specified laws regarding sections of the international border between the United States and Mexico and between the United States and Canada shall apply to all land under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture within 100 miles of the international land borders of the United States with respect to U.S. Customs and Border Protection activities under this title.
States that this title shall not be construed to restrict legal use (grazing, hunting, mining, or public-use recreational and backcountry airstrips) on, or legal access to, land under the jurisdiction of the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Agriculture.
Terminates this title five years after enactment.