Amendment Text: H.Amdt.737 — 112th Congress (2011-2012)

There is one version of the amendment.

Shown Here:
Amendment as Offered (07/26/2011)

This Amendment appears on page H5562 in the following article from the Congressional Record.


[Pages H5553-H5578]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




     DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, ENVIRONMENT, AND RELATED AGENCIES 
                        APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2012

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 363 and rule 
XVIII, the Chair declares the House in the Committee of the Whole House 
on the state of the Union for the further consideration of the bill, 
H.R. 2584.

                              {time}  2037


                     In the Committee of the Whole

  Accordingly, the House resolved itself into the Committee of the 
Whole House on the state of the Union for the further consideration of 
the bill (H.R. 2584) making appropriations for the Department of the 
Interior, environment, and related agencies for the fiscal year ending 
September 30, 2012, and for other purposes, with Mr. Hurt (Acting 
Chair) in the chair.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The Acting CHAIR. When the Committee of the Whole rose earlier today, 
an amendment offered by the gentleman from Washington (Mr. Dicks) was 
pending, and the bill had been read through page 9, line 12.
  Mr. LANGEVIN. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Rhode Island is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. LANGEVIN. Mr. Chairman, I rise to support the amendment 
introduced by my friend and colleague, Ranking Member Dicks, and in 
opposition to the broader FY 2012 Interior appropriations bill. This 
bipartisan amendment, I believe, is critical to restoring the longtime 
commitment to protecting our most threatened species from extinction.
  The gentleman from Virginia is absolutely correct that so many of 
these species our planet actually depends on, and it is a symbiotic 
relationship that protects our environment.
  The language in the underlying bill to prevent any funds from being 
used to list new species under the Endangered Species Act, I believe, 
is shortsighted and only serves to punish a successful program for 
preserving critical habitats. And this language is just one example of 
the extremely harmful policies included in this bill.
  On the broader bill itself, and how it fails to help our economy and 
create jobs, I want to mention that in my home State of Rhode Island, 
our unemployment rate right now continues to be the third-highest in 
the Nation, at 10.8 percent. Right now we need investment in our 
infrastructure and in our resources to create jobs and modernize our 
communities.
  New England is home to some of the oldest infrastructure in the 
Nation, and it is estimated that our drinking water infrastructure 
needs will cost over $400 million over the next 20 years, and that our 
State has $1.16 billion in unmet wastewater needs. But instead of 
addressing these needs by investing in our communities and creating new 
jobs, this bill slashes both the Clean Water and Drinking Water State 
Revolving Funds by 55 and 14 percent, respectively, below last year's 
levels.
  In this time of complex and contentious debates about our debt and 
future fiscal security, I constantly hear my colleagues talk about the 
burden our actions will place on the next generation. Yet this bill 
would repeal and block implementation of two of the most important laws 
that keep our environment safe, the Clean Water and Clean Air Act.
  Now, what chance are we giving our children to grow up and flourish 
if we can't protect the rivers and bays that they swim in and the water 
that they drink?
  I'm also very disappointed that this bill blocks the EPA from 
finalizing a rule reducing emissions of mercury from power plants. Now, 
last week, Members were down here on the floor speaking about the tiny 
amount of mercury in light bulbs. Yet, today these same Members are 
blocking a rule that would keep our fisheries healthy and safe for 
consumption, in addition to preventing 17,000 premature deaths each 
year.
  I don't understand how my colleagues on the other side of the aisle 
can be opposed to a small amount of mercury last week, yet today 
seemingly have no problem, no problem with much larger quantities of 
the same substance, but it being allowed to endanger public health.
  Now, lastly, I urge my colleagues to fight against the nearly 80 
percent cut in the Land and Water Conservation Fund, the lowest amount 
in its 45-year history. As many of us are well aware, hunting, fishing, 
camping, and other outdoor recreation activities are a great benefit to 
our economy, bringing in a total of $730 billion each year and 
supporting 6.5 million jobs.

                              {time}  2040

  These numbers bear out when you look at my home State of Rhode 
Island. Each year, 163,000 sportsmen and 436,000 wildlife watchers 
combine to spend $381 million on wildlife-associated recreation in 
Rhode Island. We have incredible national wildlife refuges, which have 
been protected with LWCF funding, and which offer families in my 
district an opportunity to enjoy beautiful parks, trails, and open 
spaces at no cost during these tough economic times.
  Mr. Chairman, I don't believe that this bill reflects our values or 
our shared desire to preserve our beautiful Nation. I believe we can 
and we ought to do better for our constituents and for our children. I 
urge my colleagues to reject this bill and to bring a bill to the floor 
that preserves our environment, creates new jobs, and protects our 
commitment to future generations.
  Mr. DICKS. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. LANGEVIN. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. DICKS. I just want to commend the gentleman for his statement. 
It's an outstanding statement. You covered this very comprehensively, 
especially the part about infrastructure. There was a $688 billion 
wastewater backlog during the Bush administration. We should be putting 
people to work on those kinds of projects. The gentleman is absolutely 
right, and I appreciate him being here late in the evening to support 
my amendment.
  Mr. LANGEVIN. I thank the ranking member. I want to commend the 
gentleman for sponsoring this amendment and for his work on the broader 
bill. This is the right thing to do, to defeat the broader bill here 
and bring a bill to the floor that really reflects our values.
  Again, I thank the gentleman from Washington State for offering this 
amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CONAWAY. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Texas is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. CONAWAY. Mr. Chairman, as has been spoken earlier, the Endangered 
Species Act is broken. What began as a tool to help scientists protect 
vulnerable populations of endangered animals and plants has 
metastasized into an economic straitjacket from which there is no 
relief.
  To illustrate my point, I would like to share the stories of two 
species that make their home in west Texas: the Concho water snake and 
the dune sagebrush lizard.
  The Concho water snake was first listed as threatened on September 3, 
1986. Since that time, the citizens of

[[Page H5554]]

Texas have spent millions of dollars complying with Federal mandates, 
performing surveys, and generally advancing knowledge of the snake's 
biology far beyond that which existed when the snake was first listed 
in 1986. Today, there is little question that the snake's population is 
stable and exists in far greater numbers than during the original 
listing.
  Because of this research, the service proposed delisting the snake on 
July 8, 2008. This delisting should be a victory for the service and 
the supporters of the Endangered Species Act. Instead, it has collapsed 
into a maddening, saddening caricature of endless government 
bureaucracy.

  During a federally mandated 10-year study of the snake, researchers 
caught and released 9,000 individual snakes. The data collected was the 
basis for the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission's decision to remove 
the snake from their threatened species list in August 2000. At that 
time, Fish and Wildlife declined to delist the species, instead 
requesting an additional population viability study to be conducted, 
with, of course, updated data.
  Eight years later, in July of '08, the service finally issued a 
formal delisting proposal after what must have been an exhaustive, 
thorough, and detailed review of all of the best available science. 
Unfortunately, as of today, the service still has not completed action 
on its own proposal. Today, to the best of my knowledge, the final 
delisting rule is hung up somewhere with the lawyers in the solicitor's 
office of Fish and Wildlife.
  It is inexcusable that this snake persists on the endangered species 
list. Its continued inclusion on the list represents a significant 
commitment of Federal, State, and local tax dollars. At a time when our 
financial commitments are under a strain at every level of government, 
dollars are wasted because of the failure of Fish and Wildlife to make 
a final decision on their own recommendation.
  But beyond the dollars wasted while protecting a species that the 
service supports delisting, I'm more concerned about the long-term 
impact this non-decision has on the public's trust in our Federal 
Government. By proposing and then failing to delist a species, the 
service is undermining the very reputation it relies on when it hands 
down drastic and painful mandates sometimes needed to protect a species 
on the brink of extinction. The dunes sagebrush lizard is just one such 
species whose protection will require the service to demand significant 
and costly compliance measures from the landowners and communities 
where this lizard exists.
  Unfortunately, it's also a species that has a paltry amount of 
science behind the support of its listing. In Texas, there are but a 
handful of places that anyone has looked for the lizard, and the 
service is unable to answer basic questions as to how many lizards 
exist today or how many are needed to support a viable population of 
these lizards.
  This might not stir up much trouble, except that the dune sagebrush 
lizard lives above one of the most productive oil and gas producing 
basins in the lower 48. Its inclusion on the endangered species list 
would dramatically curtail oil and gas exploration across this vast 
patch of the Permian Basin until the Fish and Wildlife Service decides 
on how best to proceed several years from now.
  The oil produced on this land provides the livelihood for hundreds of 
thousands of Texas families, millions of dollars of support for Texas 
university and public school students and, most important, is used as 
energy by millions of Americans. The Fish and Wildlife Service has 
proposed closing this land to development based on too little science 
and too little concern for the economic consequences.
  I believe that the interminable delay in delisting the Concho water 
snake and the paltry science behind listing of the dune sagebrush 
lizard is damaging the service's credibility as an honest steward of 
the powers its agents are entrusted with. Fair or not, the Endangered 
Species Act as implemented by Fish and Wildlife is viewed in my 
district as little more than a cudgel to beat up disfavored industries, 
in large part because the science is often shoddy, species are rarely 
delisted, and the mandates continue in perpetuity. I support the 
underlying legislation today because I believe it is the best short-
term chance to correct the imbalance in the implementation of the 
Endangered Species Act.
  The underlying legislation will allow the Fish and Wildlife Service 
one full year to clear out its backlog of Concho water snakes across 
this Nation. Free from new listing requirements, the service can focus 
on the recoveries of the species that are under its care and better 
managing the charges it already has. I hope that the service takes this 
year off to pay particular attention to the dune sagebrush lizard and 
work to understand this animal better before it moves to close down 
thousands of well sites across west Texas while the resulting energy 
prices are crushing our constituents.
  Mr. Chairman, I oppose the gentleman's amendment because the 
amendment locks in the failed status quo for another year and offers 
communities around this country like mine no relief from the arbitrary 
mandates in the Endangered Species Act.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SABLAN. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from the Northern Mariana Islands is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. SABLAN. Mr. Chairman, I rise to express deep concern over the 
allocations in H.R. 2584, the Interior and Environment appropriations 
bill for 2012.
  To begin, the bill cuts $1.7 million for technical assistance and 
maintenance assistance in the United States territories. These small 
amounts of money pay big dividends in the islands. The Northern 
Marianas was just awarded $1.2 million in technical assistance funding 
to develop geothermal resources to generate electricity. We pay up to 
40 cents per kilowatt-hour now because we have to buy expensive foreign 
oil to power our generators. Technical assistance funds are helping to 
develop our own domestic energy resources; and cutting these funds 
sends us in the wrong direction, back into the arms of foreign oil 
interests.
  I do appreciate the small increases in the bill to fund water and 
sewer projects in the Northern Mariana Islands and the other 
territories. I am disappointed, however, that the bill targets the 
Environmental Protection Agency for overall cuts in the funding that 
provides Federal assistance to ensure clean air and water for all 
Americans.
  As the ranking member of the Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular 
Affairs Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over the U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service, I am also troubled over the allocations in this bill 
which would be devastating for the environment and for the preservation 
of America's natural heritage. H.R. 2584 provides inadequate funding 
for the Fish and Wildlife Service at levels 21 percent below fiscal 
year 2011 and 30 percent below the President's fiscal year 2012 
request.
  The bill cuts provide a meager $22 million in funding for the State 
and tribal wildlife grants program, 64 percent below fiscal year 2011, 
and 77 percent below the fiscal year 2012 President's request. This is 
a program that makes small investments now to avoid large expenses 
later. It provides money to States and tribes to take voluntary 
conservation actions to stabilize declining fish and wildlife 
populations now, and this helps avoid endangered species listings 
later. In my district, these grants help implement our wildlife action 
plan, conserving wildlife and, I might add, creating jobs.
  The bill also cuts the Fish and Wildlife Service's cooperative 
landscape conservation and adaptive science program 35 percent below 
the fiscal year 2011 levels and 47 percent below the fiscal year 2012 
President's budget. This program supports the work of Federal, State, 
tribal, and local partners to develop strategies to address climate 
impacts on wildlife on local and regional scales.

                              {time}  2050

  The Northern Mariana Islands and other insular areas are on the front 
line of climate change. We face the impacts of sea level rise, ocean 
acidification, and increasing typhoon intensity. We need this program 
to develop science-based tools and solutions to conserve natural 
resources and help us adapt to the many negative effects coming at us 
as the Earth grows hotter. H.R. 2584 also cuts funding for the

[[Page H5555]]

National Wildlife Refuge System to 7 percent below fiscal year 2011 and 
9 percent below the 2012 request.
  The National Wildlife Refuge System is the world's finest network of 
protected lands and waters. We have refuges in every State and in 
nearly every territory, including the Northern Mariana Islands. These 
refuges conserve our fish and wildlife resources, but they also have a 
huge economic benefit. Millions of people visit refuges each year to 
hunt, fish, and observe wildlife. The refuge system generates $1.7 
billion in sales for local communities and creates nearly 27,000 jobs 
annually. Every dollar spent in the refuge system by the Federal 
Government returns about $4 to local communities, and we can assume 
that every dollar we cut means $4 less for our local communities.
  I have introduced legislation, H.R. 2236, that would generate funds 
for the refuges separate from the appropriations through the sale of 
semipostal stamps to address operations and maintenance backlog, but 
this is no substitute for money being cut in H.R. 2584.
  Also cut is the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which is used to 
acquire lands and conservation easements from willing sellers and 
landowners to provide operational efficiencies and connectivity within 
the refuges.
  At a Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs Subcommittee 
hearing this year, we heard from stakeholders as diverse as Defenders 
of Wildlife and the National Rifle Association who recognize the 
importance of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which, I might add, 
is generated by offshore oil and gas drilling revenues. H.R. 2584 
provides only $15 million to this program, 73 percent below fiscal year 
2011 levels and 89 percent below the fiscal year 2012 President's 
request.
  I strongly oppose H.R. 2584, which rolls back necessary funding to 
support hunters, fishermen, recreationists, and local communities who 
depend on the environment for their livelihoods and which undermines 
ongoing conservation, public health, and environmental protection for 
all Americans.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Pennsylvania is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. Mr. Chairman, I rise today in support of this 
amendment, which I have cosponsored, that would remove a rider from 
this bill that would seriously compromise the effectiveness of the 
landmark Endangered Species Act, which was signed into law almost 40 
years ago in 1973.
  The extinction rider in this bill is a sweeping action that will 
prevent the Fish and Wildlife Service from spending any money on 
listing new plants and animals under the Endangered Species Act, 
designating critical habitat, or upgrading species from threatened to 
endangered. At the same time, the bill maintains funding for delisting 
species, creating an incomplete and lopsided endangered species policy.
  Mr. Chairman, my constituents in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and the 
American people support the important mission of the ESA, and it's not 
hard to see why. Preserving animals and plants brings countless 
benefits to people, and a loss of a species can have dangerous and 
expensive consequences in the future. For example, the U.S. Geological 
Survey recently estimated that the loss of bats in North America would 
cost agricultural producers nearly $4 billion per year, including those 
in my district. We also never know which species of plants and animals 
may be important in developing lifesaving medicines in the future.

  But the ESA's primary success to date has been to prevent the 
extinction of hundreds of species, including the American alligator, 
grizzly bear, and gray wolf. Indeed, less than two dozen species have 
gone extinct under the act, and most of these species were already 
doomed to extinction by the time they were listed.
  Perhaps the most iconic among these species saved by the act is our 
national symbol, the bald eagle. On June 20, 1782, our Founding Fathers 
adopted the bald eagle as our national emblem. On the backs of many of 
our coins we see an eagle with outspread wings. On the Great Seal of 
the United States, on the seal of this very House of Representatives, 
and in many places which are exponents of our Nation's authority, we 
see the same emblem.
  Living as it does on the tops of lofty mountains and in river valleys 
as close as the Potomac, the eagle represents freedom. However, by the 
mid-20th century, the bald eagle was severely threatened and reduced to 
just 400 nesting pairs. Bald eagles were declared an endangered species 
in 1967 in the lower 48 States under a less cohesive, less effective 
act. Then the ESA was signed into law. As a result of this, on July 4, 
1976, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officially listed the bald 
eagle as a national endangered species. And thanks to the Endangered 
Species Act, the Fish and Wildlife Service upgraded the bald eagle to 
threatened status in the lower 48 States in 1995 and officially removed 
it from the nationwide list in 2007. Today, after decades of 
conservation effort, the Interior Department reports that there are 
some 10,000 nesting pairs for us and for future generations to cherish. 
Because, in large part, of the ESA, my children have had the chance to 
see a bald eagle in its natural habitat.
  This amendment will remove the funding restriction on the listing and 
limit the funding to what has been spent on these activities in recent 
years. Additionally, the overall funding amount for the ESA and related 
programs of $138 million is significantly less than in past years, 
including in fiscal year 2008.
  Mr. Chairman, decisions about wildlife management should be made by 
scientists, not by politicians. Preventing listing is not the answer. 
We must allow the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to do their job and 
protect species while making improvements to increase the efficiency of 
this crucial program.
  As I close, I implore my colleagues to imagine if the U.S. Fish and 
Wildlife Service had been restricted from listing the American bald 
eagle. This majestic creature, without corrective measures, would have 
been lost only to books and to our national memory.
  We have a responsibility to prevent the extinction of fish, plants, 
and wildlife because once they're gone, they're gone forever and we 
can't bring them back.
  I urge support for this amendment.
  Mr. DICKS. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. DICKS. I just want to commend the gentleman for an incredibly 
comprehensive, thoughtful, and credible presentation.
  You mentioned the bald eagle. Just a few weeks ago, my grandchildren 
were out at Hood Canal, where I live, and on the beach three bald 
eagles came down and landed. It was one of the most remarkable things I 
have ever seen. And I just want to thank the gentleman for his support, 
his cosponsorship of this amendment. And I appreciate your credibility 
and your forthrightness.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I just want to say, because the gentleman 
made a very good remark, but since we're talking about bald eagles, in 
our State they're around, and I would invite the gentleman to come to 
where I live in the desert in central Washington where every fall and 
winter we see bald eagles. They are truly a majestic bird.
  But the point is, again--and I really thank the gentleman for 
yielding--this debate is not about the Endangered Species Act. This 
debate here is about trying to get people together so we can make the 
Endangered Species Act work in a way that will be beneficial to 
everybody, so that we can repeat the successes that we have had, albeit 
the successes are only 20 species; but, nevertheless, we ought to be 
working that way rather than restricting and having restrictions as the 
current act is.
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. I appreciate the gentleman's remarks. I appreciate 
the invitation. And the way to amend the act is in regular order, not 
in appropriation.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  (On request of Mr. Hastings of Washington, and by unanimous consent, 
Mr.

[[Page H5556]]

Fitzpatrick was allowed to proceed for 30 additional seconds.)
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. I appreciate the invitation, but the way to amend 
the act is in regular order in the committee, not necessarily through 
the appropriations process.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. FITZPATRICK. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. As I mentioned in my remarks when I 
spoke, that certainly is the intent of the committee that I chair that 
has jurisdiction.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has again expired.

                              {time}  2100

  Mr. THOMPSON of California. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last 
word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. Mr. Chairman, the amendment before us 
today corrects a terrible flaw in the underlying bill, a provision that 
prohibits the endangered species from being listed as endangered. This 
provision is so bad that it would be funny but for the dangerous effect 
it would have on imperiled species on the brink of extinction and 
struggling to survive.
  The previous speaker was eloquent in his discussion about the bald 
eagle. Let's think about what would have happened had this measure been 
law 44 years ago. The American bald eagle, our national bird and 
symbol, would be gone. In the 1960s, there were less than 450 nesting 
pairs of bald eagles. But thanks to the Endangered Species Act, this 
national symbol was removed from the endangered species list in 2007. 
And now there are nearly 10,000 nesting pair of bald eagles.
  Maybe some of my colleagues side with those who wanted our national 
bird to be a turkey. But I think I speak for most Americans when I say 
that I am proud that we saved this national treasure, the American bald 
eagle, from extinction.
  Had this rider been the law of the land in 1979, the American 
alligator would most likely be gone. But because of the ESA 
protections, the American alligator population has grown to more than 2 
million and continues to thrive, helping local economies throughout the 
southeast.
  The Aleutian goose is another example of the success of the 
Endangered Species Act. Back in 1967, there were no more than a few 
hundred of these birds. But thanks to the ESA, the Aleutian goose was 
fully recovered and successfully delisted in 2001, with a population of 
more than 100,000 birds in 2008. So successful was the ESA recovery 
effort that the Aleutian goose is not only thriving, but also being 
hunted in my district. Just this past hunting season alone, 1,700 acres 
of land were made available to hunters by the California Department of 
Fish and Game, not only pleasing the hunters, but helping the local 
economy as well.
  Other animals that have made a tremendous recovery while listed under 
the Endangered Species Act include the California condor, the black-
footed ferret, and the whooping crane. And of great importance to my 
district, we are seeing signs of healthy recovery for ESA-listed 
salmon. This impacts other fishing States as well.
  Ironically, this deeply flawed provision does allow funding for the 
Fish and Wildlife Service to delist recovered species under the act. 
However, you can't remove protections for recovered species unless they 
are listed as endangered in the first place and a successful recovery 
plan is implemented. This measure puts the cart before the horse.
  Our bipartisan amendment, which is supported by more than 60 
organizations, would strike this extreme provision. It is our 
responsibility to be good stewards of this Earth and prevent the 
extinction of wildlife, plants, and fish. The sad truth is that once we 
lose a species, we will never get it back. That's why we need to allow 
for science-based policies and recovery plans for imperiled species 
instead of allowing politics to drive listing decisions and activities.
  I recognize that some of my colleagues have strong objections to the 
Endangered Species Act. But placing a spending rider on this year's 
Interior appropriation bill is not the answer. If real reform is 
needed, then let's have an honest debate in the authorizing committee 
to look at what is working and what's not working under the Endangered 
Species Act. And let's fix it.
  That's a far wiser course than including an extreme policy change 
that goes back on America's promise to protect our most vulnerable 
animals and plants and would not be supported by the American public.
  I ask that we support the Dicks amendment, this bipartisan amendment, 
and make sure that we take this extreme policy out of the underlying 
bill.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I appreciate the gentleman's closing 
remarks when he said this is not the proper venue to address the 
Endangered Species Act. That has been my argument, too. I think it 
should be done in the authorizing committee.
  But the fact of the matter is there is no incentive for the 
stakeholders to sit down if we continue to kick the ball ahead and not 
seriously look at the Endangered Species Act.
  As the chairman said very well in his remarks, this is simply a shot 
across the bow, not only on this, but on other authorized programs. So 
we are not picking on these.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman from California has 
expired.
  (On request of Mr. Hastings of Washington, and by unanimous consent, 
Mr. Thompson of California was allowed to proceed for 1 additional 
minute.)
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I thank the gentleman.
  This is a shot. It is a shot at the endangered species. You and I 
both know how important this is in regard to the salmon in our 
district, something that is very, very important, something that is 
important to our economy and something that is important to the ecology 
of not only our State but the ecology of the Nation. We need to work 
together, and I can suggest that we remove this and get to working 
together.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I yield to the gentleman.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. We share that concern about the salmon. I 
would point out to the gentleman that the salmon runs in the Snake 
River and the tributaries are coming back in greater number, which 
would suggest that the species is being recovered. And yet we are 
waiting for a judge to make a decision.
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. Remember, you are very well aware of the 
salmon issue and how there have been a number of attempts over the 
matter of water that, if they had been successful, had it not been for 
the Endangered Species Act, there wouldn't be any fish, because without 
water, as you know, there are no fish.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. If the gentleman will continue to yield, 
I can't argue with the gentleman. I'm simply saying we need to look at 
this. It has been 23 years.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman from California has again 
expired.
  (On request of Mr. Hastings of Washington, and by unanimous consent, 
Mr. Thompson of California was allowed to proceed for 30 additional 
seconds.)
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I thank the gentleman.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I yield to the gentleman.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. The argument is not about the Endangered 
Species Act. The argument is about the serious business of sitting down 
and reauthorizing an act that has not been reauthorized since the 
1980s.
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I suggest we do it in the authorizing 
bill.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I totally agree with you, and I said that 
in the opening remarks. The gentleman from Washington suggested that, 
and I totally agree with him.
  Mr. THOMPSON of California. I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. DENT. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Pennsylvania is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. DENT. I rise tonight in support of the Dicks-Fitzpatrick 
amendment. I voted for this same language in the Appropriations 
Committee markup a few

[[Page H5557]]

weeks ago, and we have all heard some pretty compelling arguments here 
tonight about some challenges with the Endangered Species Act. And as 
has been previously stated by Mr. Thompson and others here tonight, I 
agree with those who said that the proper venue for this discussion is 
in the authorizing committee. I have great confidence in Chairman 
Hastings, that he would take a thoughtful and sincere look at the act 
to make reforms that I think many people would agree are needed. But 
again, I don't think this is the right place to do it.
  Again, I support the underlying bill. I think overall this 
legislation, this Interior bill, while it is not everything to 
everybody, and certainly the funding levels might not be where some 
people would like, Chairman Simpson has done a commendable job putting 
a bill together.
  But I think this language in the underlying bill should be stricken 
as proposed by Mr. Dicks and Mr. Fitzpatrick, and so I urge my 
colleagues to support the amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. KIND. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Wisconsin is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. KIND. Mr. Chairman, as one of the former cochairs of the 
Congressional Sportsmen Caucus, and very active in that organization, I 
rise in support of the Dicks amendment and in opposition to the 
underlying bill.
  It is unfortunate that Ranking Member Dicks has to offer an amendment 
in order to strip out a policy rider of this magnitude in an 
appropriation bill. We just had a short discussion about how this would 
be more appropriate in the authorizing committee for a further vetting 
of this issue. And I think there are some legitimate issues that we 
need to get into, but not in the appropriation bill. This is one of 
many policy riders that have been jammed into this appropriation bill, 
from the assault on the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts to allowing 
mining near the Grand Canyon, one of the great natural treasures we 
have as a Nation, and on and on and on. And this extension rider that 
was included in the base bill would prevent the Fish and Wildlife 
Service from spending money, any money, on the listing of new animals 
or plants under the Endangered Species Act.
  So to claim that this doesn't directly affect and attack the 
Endangered Species Act tonight is mind-boggling to me.
  And yet in my home district in western Wisconsin, a very beautiful 
national wildlife refuge, the Necedah Wildlife Refuge, with three 
endangered species located there--from the gray wolf to the cardinal 
blue butterfly to the whooping crane--because of the protection that 
they have had, they are now increasing in population. The wolf to the 
extent that they are on the verge of being delisted in Wisconsin, 
another success story. And the whooping crane is making a resurgence, 
all because of the protections afforded under the Endangered Species 
Act.
  And now to claim in this bill that we are going to prevent additional 
funding in order to locate those species, whether animal or plant or 
fish, from falling under the protection, this is not the appropriate 
vehicle. But there is even more in this legislation that's 
disconcerting. The deep cuts to long-standing conservation, the Land 
and Water Conservation Program that has traditionally enjoyed 
bipartisan support, is deeply disturbing--an 80 percent proposed cut to 
the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

                              {time}  2110

  And I'm glad that the committee earlier this night adopted the Bass 
amendment to at least restore $20 million to the Land and Water 
Conservation Fund. But why are we cutting anything from that vital 
program? This isn't even funded by the taxpayers.
  This comes from oil royalties from a grand bargain that we struck 
with oil and gas companies so they can explore and extract these 
natural resources from our public lands. They agreed that for the right 
of doing that, they would contribute to the Land and Water Conservation 
Fund, funds that would be used then for the enhancement of conservation 
programs and the protection and preservation of public lands in this 
country. And to come with a bill now to cut 80 percent of that out of 
oil royalties does not make sense. Or, the 7.5 percent under the 
Wildlife Refuge System.
  I know Chairman Dicks has been a champion of the refuge system for 
many years. It's a system that affects virtually every congressional 
district. It brings countless revenue into our districts, plus jobs. 
And with the huge backlog of maintenance and operation, another 7.5 
percent cut will put them in the hole.
  A $7 million cut from the National Park System budget, a 21 percent 
cut in the Fish and Wildlife Service, a 64 percent cut in the State 
Wildlife Grants Program, yet back home some of the greatest 
conversationists that I know are my hunting and fishing buddies, 
because they get it. They understand if we just go and use the 
resources and deplete it, from the wildlife to the fish to the 
waterfowl, that there's not going to be that recreational enjoyment 
that so many of us get in the outdoor recreation community.
  That's why it was no surprise that earlier this month over 640 
outdoor recreation entities and preservation entities signed a letter 
to the chairman and the leadership and to everyone in our office 
decrying the spending cuts in these programs that we have before us 
this evening, because they know that these programs aren't something 
you can just turn off like a spigot. These programs require the 
continuity of funding and the continuity of assistance in order to make 
the progress that's necessary.
  And so these draconian cuts that are being proposed right now are 
going to set back the cause of conservation, whether it's wildlife or 
land in the country, for many, many years, and that's unfortunate. 
Because these same people also understand the economic impact that 
these programs have.
  Outdoor recreation contributes over $730 billion annually to the U.S. 
economy. It supports over 6\1/2\ million jobs. One out of every 20 
private sector jobs are affiliated with outdoor recreational 
opportunity, 8 percent of consumer spending. In my own State of 
Wisconsin, hunting and fishing alone supports over 57,000 jobs and $400 
million in State revenue.
  So if we're really serious about addressing the soft economy we have 
now and doing what we can to get the economy on track, creating good-
paying jobs, this is the wrong place we should be looking in the budget 
for drastic cutbacks.
  I've been one of the leaders in this place for significant farm bill 
reform to get at the outdated agriculture subsidies.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman from Wisconsin has 
expired.
  (By unanimous consent, Mr. Kind was allowed to proceed for 1 
additional minute.)
  Mr. KIND. For years, I have been leading the effort for farm bill 
reform to end these taxpayer subsidies going to a few but large 
agribusinesses that distort the market, distort trade policies. It's 
not helping our family farmers. Finally discussion is starting to take 
place seriously to actually scrub those programs. Yet when I've led 
this cause in the past, I remember not too long ago a Member in this 
body accused me of being the Osama bin Laden of agriculture policy. Yet 
today, if we had taken actions 10 years ago when many of us were acting 
on it, maybe we wouldn't be finding ourselves in this huge fiscal hole 
that we have today.
  So not only the policy riders but the spending cuts that are being 
proposed are the wrong direction for our Nation to go. It will 
jeopardize these vital programs--programs, again, that have enjoyed 
wide bipartisan support. We ought not be balancing the budget on their 
backs.
  Over the last 30 years, funding for conservation programs has gone 
from 1.7 percent of Federal funding to less than .6 percent. They get 
it at the altar of fiscal responsibility. We can't go any deeper.
  I encourage Members to support the Dicks amendment and oppose the 
underlying bill. We have to do a better job.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. PEARCE. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New Mexico is recognized for 5 
minutes.

[[Page H5558]]

  Mr. PEARCE. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
  I reluctantly rise to oppose the gentleman from Washington's 
amendment and support the underlying bill. A lot of compelling 
arguments have been made tonight to support the Endangered Species Act 
without interruption. They talk about the bald eagle and the compelling 
story about seeing those magnificent birds, and those are visual images 
that we all like.
  But there's a side to the Endangered Species Act that is not being 
told. That's the side where one group just this year filed 1,000 
petitions at one time to list new species. They know that their lawyers 
get reimbursed from the Federal Government every time they bring suit, 
and so they're happy to bring these actions which are destroying jobs 
in the West.
  For instance, in the Second District of New Mexico, a suggested 
listing was given this year on the sand dune lizard, a small brown 
lizard that I've seen in the sand hills since I was going up there. 
They were plentiful then; they're about the same number now, but they 
have been listed as endangered.
  And people didn't think much of it. And then they began to read the 
reports that anything that disturbs the surface of the ground would 
represent a potential threat to the habitat of the lizard and would 
thereby be prohibited.
  Disturb the ground, they ask. What does that mean? Well, that means 
oil and gas activity. That means that $2.8 billion investment for 
nuclear enrichment that is taking place in southern Lea County, just 
taking place now, creating jobs for the first time in the nuclear 
industry that has been dormant for 30 years, would be shut down because 
they disturb the ground.
  It would stop the high line wires from being put up and the electric 
utility crews from driving to the homesteads miles and miles away from 
the nearest town because they would disturb the ground. They could not 
even check the power lines to make sure electricity is going to these 
remote areas.
  This is the Endangered Species Act that we're seeing.
  People would come to me in disbelief and say, Mr. Pearce, it is not 
true? They couldn't kill our jobs with a lizard, could they? What about 
us as humans? What do they say?
  I said, Take a look at the San Joaquin Valley. Twenty-seven thousand 
farmers put out of work with a 2-inch Delta smelt that we could have 
kept alive in holding ponds and bred by the millions and put into the 
rivers and go ahead and use the rivers for irrigation. But instead, a 
judge found that we had to shut down the entire agricultural product.
  We began to import vegetables from areas that spray contaminants that 
we are not allowed to use in this Nation, a less safe food supply. We 
kill 27,000 jobs. We caused jobs to be created somewhere else, less 
safe food supply, all for a 2-inch minnow that could have been kept 
alive in some other fashion.
  We also have a Lesser prairie-chicken that threatens the oil and gas 
jobs in our area. They're saying that the bird might not fly under or 
over those lines, so we can't put up electric lines across. Then, bury 
the lines, people say. Well, then the lizard wouldn't go across the 
area that's been disturbed by burying the lines.
  It's easy to see why people are saying that the Endangered Species 
Act is not functioning properly and we've got to stop it. We are 
spending $3.5 trillion a year in our government and we're bringing in 
$2.2 trillion. Part of the problem is we've killed enough of our jobs, 
we've killed enough of our economy that we're in severe debt and 
deficit crisis.
  Now, one of the problems is we've systematically eliminated the 
timber industry because of a spotted owl. We eliminated those 27,000 
farmer jobs in the San Joaquin Valley. We've got the salmon swimming 
upstream, and now it's threatening that we've got to tear down all the 
hydroelectric dams. And the list goes on and on.
  It is time for us to say that we can preserve the species and create 
jobs at the same time. That's not an unreasonable request. But to those 
lawyers making $350 a hour, they don't care if it's reasonable or not. 
To the Fish and Wildlife Service, they arrogantly told the people in 
New Mexico, No, we didn't do an economic study to see the cost on the 
jobs. We're not required to. These are things that are making people 
say enough is enough.
  It's in my district that 900 people showed up to protest at one of 
the hearings on the listing of the lizard; 900 people coming out, and 
the Fish and Wildlife Service came to me in nervousness before the 
meeting and said, Would you speak to those who couldn't get into the 
meeting? They're agitated. I said, People do get agitated when you 
start killing their careers, when you start taking the jobs away from 
them.
  There's a side to the Endangered Species Act that is being dealt with 
here tonight. I support the underlying bill and oppose the amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.

                              {time}  2120

  Mrs. CAPPS. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from California is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mrs. CAPPS. Mr. Chairman, I am in favor of Mr. Dicks' amendment to 
remove this destructive and shortsighted anti-wildlife rider from the 
underlying bill.
  The rider would gut the Endangered Species Act, as we've been 
discussing--a law that has worked for 40 years to successfully conserve 
our Nation's plants and animals. It would do this by blocking the Fish 
and Wildlife Service from new listings and bar the designation of 
critical habitat for currently listed species.
  As has been said on both sides of the aisle this evening, this 
provision creates a one-way path to weakening wildlife protections by 
allowing the service to delist and downgrade a species' status from 
endangered to threatened but not to list new species. Unless a species 
is listed, it receives no protection under the ESA. Currently, the 
service has identified over 260 species that warrant protection but 
cannot be listed due to a lack of Federal resources. That's 260 species 
of plants and animals found across the Nation that are in dire need of 
assistance and are at risk of disappearing forever.
  Mr. Chairman, America's native plants and animals are already in 
serious trouble--under constant threat from toxic pesticides, air and 
water pollution, habitat destruction, and climate change; but this 
shortsighted and irresponsible rider may prove to be the most immediate 
and serious threat of all, sending countless species into extinction 
and destroying America's great conservation legacy.
  It is our responsibility here to protect and conserve our Nation's 
most precious resources for future generations, and of course, that's 
why the Endangered Species Act was written. It codifies our commitment 
to good stewardship, and it preserves what we hold dear for the benefit 
of our children and our grandchildren. Since its initiation, we've 
witnessed incredible comebacks. Animals that were once on the verge of 
disappearing forever are thriving once again.
  Because of the Endangered Species Act and other successful 
partnerships, bald eagles have returned, not only to Washington State, 
but to the Channel Islands off the coast of my congressional district. 
Just a few years ago, a pair of nesting bald eagles produced the first 
wild-born chicks in 50 years on Santa Cruz Island.
  Also on the Central Coast, we've seen California condors and 
peregrine falcons soaring through our skies once again. The Guadalupe 
fur seal, which was hunted to near extinction, can now be seen swimming 
off the Channel Islands. There are similar success stories for the 
southern sea otter and the blue whale, both found in the Central Coast 
waters of California; and the return of Island Foxes, whose population 
dropped down to less than 100, is now back above 1,200.
  Mr. Chairman, of course there are so many examples across the 
country--Florida panthers, gray wolves, grizzly bears--and hundreds 
more species that have not gone extinct after receiving protection 
under the act. These species can't wait any longer, and we can't let 
them disappear forever on our watch.
  I strongly urge my colleagues to support Mr. Dicks' amendment to 
strike this irresponsible provision in the bill. We can and must do 
better. Our children and our grandchildren are depending upon us.

[[Page H5559]]

  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. BISHOP of Utah. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. BISHOP of Utah. I rise to support Mr. Dicks' idea but not the 
process he is using to get there.
  It is one of the amazing things as you look about the debate on this 
particular amendment. It's like ships passing in the night--getting 
close but never actually touching because everyone who has spoken so 
far is saying the same thing: that we want to have an Endangered 
Species Act that works. This needs to be fixed or amended and changed 
in some way to make it work better, to involve the entire process so 
that everyone is working towards the same goal; but for some reason, it 
flat out is not happening, and it's not happening because we have 
violated the process.
  Everyone has said this is not the right place to try and fix the 
Endangered Species Act. That's also true, but it's the only process 
that's allowed because we have violated our own intent. Appropriators 
are supposed to appropriate funds to programs. Authorizers are supposed 
to create the programs and then every so often reauthorize those 
programs to make changes based on the need or to make sure that we are 
moving in the proper direction.
  Let me introduce you, or at least remind you, of John Gochnauer--one 
of my favorite baseball players at the turn of the century with the 
Cleveland Indians. He was good enough to play regular shortstop for 
Cleveland, although the first year he played he committed 48 errors, 
and his batting average was 187. He was still good enough to stay 
around for the next year when, this time, his errors were just slightly 
under 100--he had a hard time hitting the first baseman when he threw--
and his batting average was, once again, 187.
  I say that specifically because the most inept player ever to put on 
spikes and play Major League Baseball had a batting average of 187. The 
Endangered Species Act has listed over 2,000 species and saved 21 for a 
batting average of 10 if you round up. It's actually .009. That clearly 
indicates we can do better, and we need to do better.
  So the question has to simply be why aren't we doing better? Why 
can't we fix this problem and have a better success rate?
  The answer is very simple:
  For 23 years, we have put riders on this particular appropriations 
act to fully fund the old program, which has prohibited the authorizing 
committee to ever get people together to make the program better.
  Chairman Hastings has simply said his goal is to provide a process 
that improves the system--and there is room for improvement of the 
system--but to do that, you've got to get the players to sit down in 
the authorizing committees where this is supposed to be worked out. The 
Endangered Species Act needs to be expanded, needs to be fixed, needs 
to zero in to create people working together for a common goal.
  I am actually grateful for Representative Dicks and Representative 
Simpson and what they have done in this bill. This amendment in the 
underlying bill does not destroy the Endangered Species Act. It doesn't 
even cut the funding for those species that are already being worked 
on. All it does is provide a change in the process to insist that 
people have to do what we should have been doing for the last 23 
years--going to the authorizing committee and fixing the act, not just 
kicking the can down the road by funding it year, after year, after 
year, after year, while only 21 species have recovered over the 2,000 
that could have and should have been.
  I'm sorry. That's what everyone is saying. We all want species to be 
preserved and recovered, but we all are failing in the process, and 
after 23 years, we should have learned what we have been doing in the 
past doesn't work. Maybe if we went back to the way the system was 
intended to be and was designed to function, we could actually move 
forward in this entire issue, which, oddly enough, is what everyone is 
saying.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. DICKS. I move to strike the requisite number of words.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the gentleman from Washington is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  There was no objection.
  Mr. DICKS. I will do this very briefly.
  As I recall, from 1995 to 2007, the other side--the majority party 
today--was the majority party then, and I don't remember any great 
effort on the Endangered Species Act. I welcome it. I welcome that any 
act can be made better. Now you guys are in charge again, and you have 
another opportunity. I believe Mr. Bishop has been on the committee for 
quite a long time. I'm going to go look in his reform bill in the 
Record to see what has been happening here.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. DICKS. I yield to the gentleman from Washington State, from the 
Natural Resources Committee.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  I appreciate the gentleman's remarks. I would remind him, from the 
time that we did get control of Congress in 1995 until your side gained 
control after the 2006 election, that was the issue that the then-
chairman--the last chairman of the Natural Resources Committee, Richard 
Pombo from California--was working on. As a matter of fact, I think it 
was in 2005 that we did pass ES reform out of this House.

                              {time}  2130

  It did not go anyplace in the other body. So history tends to repeat 
itself.
  Mr. DICKS. Former Senator Kempthorne worked on it.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. He did, as did Senator Crapo from Idaho.
  Here is the problem: The problem is that through all of the efforts 
of Chairman Pombo of trying to get this enacted and he couldn't get it 
through the Senate, then you know what the Appropriations Committee 
did?
  Mr. DICKS. Reclaiming my time, because I can't go on forever, I just 
would say nobody is stopping you. Hold your hearings. Have your 
meetings. Bring up the witnesses, but don't stop listing 260 candidate 
species until you get the job done.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. DICKS. I yield to the gentleman.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I've been chairman now for a little over 
6 months. I have every intention to do that, and I want to work with 
the gentleman on this.
  Mr. DICKS. I want to be involved in this.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. DICKS. I yield to the gentleman from Idaho, my good friend and 
the chairman and former ranking member, one of the best ranking members 
I've ever had.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Mr. Bishop had it exactly right. We all want the same thing. We want 
the Endangered Species Act, but we want the Endangered Species Act to 
work. And as you mentioned, Senator Kempthorne worked on it very hard, 
got it through the Senate when he was a Senator before he became 
Governor of Idaho. And it was some Republicans frankly in the House 
that stopped it because they didn't think it went far enough.
  Unfortunately, if we just continue to do what we've done in the past, 
we're going to get exactly what we've gotten in the past, and that is 
no incentive for people to sit down and say we've got to work on this 
and we've got to get it done. And that's all we're trying to do.
  Mr. MORAN. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. DICKS. I yield to the ranking member.
  Mr. MORAN. I do think it might be instructive that Mr. Pombo is no 
longer among our ranks and the principle reason is the Endangered 
Species Act authorization that he attempted to write which was so 
destructive of the original intent of the Endangered Species Act of 
1965, and it was a Republican Senate that defeated it.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. DICKS. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. I just want to respond to my friend from 
Virginia.
  The bill passed, if my memory serves me correctly, with bipartisan 
support.
  But, yes, of course there are political risks in doing whatever we're 
doing in

[[Page H5560]]

this body; and we all face that. After all, this is the people's 
government. But the point is it needs--and we've been saying over and 
over, the ESA needs to be updated.
  It's been 23 years, for goodness sake.
  Mr. DICKS. No one is objecting. I agree. We should look at how to 
improve the ESA. I don't like to hear these examples of where the 
process has not been able to be worked out. I have had to go through 
this as you have in the Pacific Northwest with the spotted owl, the 
marbled murrelet, salmon, et cetera. Now, those are starting to 
recover. We're making some progress, but I still believe we can make 
this act better.
  I just think by taking out the ability to list and to have critical 
habitat, we're risking some of these species that are close to 
extinction.
  And remember this: it's also about biodiversity, the web of life. We 
don't know how all of these things relate and whether something can be 
created, a medicine that could save lives in the future. And that's why 
trying to protect these species is an important thing.
  The Acting CHAIR. The time of the gentleman from Washington has 
expired.
  (On request of Mr. Simpson, and by unanimous consent, Mr. Dicks was 
allowed to proceed for 1 additional minute.)
  Mr. DICKS. It's important for civilization, for humanity. We're 
creatures here, too. We depend on a lot of other animals in order to 
survive. And so this goes beyond just a legislative ``it's difficult.'' 
This is down and dirty. This is very important. This is very important 
to survival.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. DICKS. I yield to the gentleman from Idaho.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I don't disagree with anything the gentleman just said. 
It's also important to remember that this amendment would take the caps 
off that have been in place since President Clinton and would undermine 
the Fish and Wildlife Service's budget to a great degree because it 
would then be controlled by the courts and by lawsuits. That's not 
where we want to go.
  Mr. DICKS. We'll fix it in conference.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. HIRONO. Mr. Chair, I rise in support
of the Dicks-Fitzpatrick-Thompson-Hanabusa amendment to delete the 
Extinction Rider that was improperly added to this legislation. This 
rider, which has no place in an appropriation bill, prevents the Fish 
and Wildlife Service from spending any money on listing new plants and 
animals under the Endangered Species Act, designating critical habitat, 
or upgrading species from threatened to endangered.
  This is a big deal to me because Hawaii happens to have the highest 
number of endangered species of any state in the nation. This is due, 
in large part, to the unique species that evolved in Hawaii because of 
its location 2,400 miles from the nearest land mass. In fact, Hawaii's 
33 endangered bird species represent 42 percent of the U.S. bird 
species listed as endangered. All of these live in my district. For 
example, we have a beautiful endangered forest bird called the Hawaii 
`Akepa. Thanks to the Endangered Species Act, the populations of this 
bird are currently stable on Hawaii Island, although it is very rare on 
the island of Maui. The `Akepa and the other 32 Hawaiian bird species 
listed as endangered are threatened by loss of habitat, a warming 
climate, and the onslaught of introduced species.
  In fact, 69 of the 265 candidate species for addition to the 
Endangered Species Act--26 percent--are found in Hawaii. Most, like the 
`Akepa, are found nowhere else in the world.
  Another example of an Endangered Species Act success is the 
threatened Hawaiian green sea turtle--or honu as we call it in Hawaii. 
In the 1970s, before being listed, the Hawaiian green sea turtle was in 
steep decline because it was regularly hunted and eaten. Since being 
protected by the Endangered Species Act, the numbers of green sea 
turtles have increased dramatically--by 53 percent over the past 25 
years! Despite this success, the honu remains vulnerable because its 
primary nesting habitat in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands could be 
lost to sea level rise caused by climate change.
  As members of Congress, we have a special responsibility to protect 
and be stewards of the land, the water, the air, and the species with 
which we share this world. There is no recovery from extinction. Each 
time we lose a unique creature or plant that evolved over thousands or 
millions of years, we make the world a poorer place and rob future 
generations.
  Ms. SLAUGHTER. Mr. Chair, I rise today to defend our democracy from 
the egregious attacks on our legislative process that are abundant in 
the underlying legislation. The FY 2012 Interior Appropriations bill is 
rife with policy riders that legislate on an appropriations bill, which 
is in violation of Rules of the House. As a long serving Member of the 
House Rules Committee, I have seen a fair share of policy riders 
attached to legislation, but never in the history of my time here in 
the House have I seen such blatant disregard for the House rules and 
departure from regular legislative order.
  There are dozens of these anti-environment policy riders--or should I 
say these pro-industry earmarks that are included in the underlying 
legislation. There is an entire stand-alone bill included in this must-
pass legislation--an entire bill that couldn't muster enough support to 
be passed into law on its own virtues--that is standing in our way from 
funding the government in the upcoming fiscal year.
  Last Thursday in the Rules Committee I offered a motion to amend the 
rule to strike the waiver that protects these offensive riders from 
points of order. If the Majority had voted in support of regular order 
and adopted my amendment, the Members of this House would have had the 
opportunity to raise points of order against these assaults on our 
environment here on the floor and strike them from the bill. 
Predictably, though, my motion failed on a party-line vote.
  If the Majority had followed regular and adopted my amendment to the 
rule in Committee, Members of the House could have been able to strike 
riders that:
  Put more toxic mercury, arsenic, and lead into our air and puts our 
children's health at risk; Allow more soot pollution in our air;
  Block EPA from moving forward with carbon pollution standards for new 
vehicles after 2016;
  Put as many as 34,000 lives at risk;
  Threaten the health of millions of Americans;
  Threaten the health of America's children, elderly citizens and other 
vulnerable populations;
  Block EPA from limiting dangerous air pollution from livestock 
production and manure management;
  Ban EPA from doing its job to enforce the Clean Air Act in Texas;
  Exempt oil companies from complying with Clean Air Act standards;
  Put the drinking water of 117 million Americans at risk;
  Prevent EPA from protecting communities' clean water supplies;
  Allow unregulated discharge of pesticides directly into waterways;
  Threaten the health and environment of communities across Appalachia 
by blocking a number of protections against the destruction and 
pollution from mountaintop removal coal mining;
  Put thousands of people living near coal ash pools at risk of toxic 
disasters;
  Put Americans' drinking water and waterways at risk of sewage and 
urban runoff pollution;
  Block EPA from moving forward with new rules to minimize the adverse 
environmental impacts of power plant cooling water intake structures;
  Block protections for more than 1 million acres of land around the 
Grand Canyon;
  Put public lands at risk of destruction;
  Put the Delaware Water Gap and parts of the Appalachian Trail at risk 
of development; and
  Put endangered species at risk of harmful pesticides.
  So here we are tonight, fighting for our fellow citizens' right to 
clean air and clean drinking water with one of the few tools we have 
left as the minority in the House--our voices and the privilege to 
represent our constituents on the House floor. We are fighting to 
uphold decades of successful, bipartisan environmental laws that have 
protected our environment and improved our public health.
  Each policy rider goes against our nation's values and our belief 
that we solve our toughest problems through shared sacrifice and 
working together. When these policy riders are all combined, they place 
a suffocating burden on the American people while rewarding special 
interests and the lobbyists who walk these halls.
  Under this bill, the nation's clean air protections would be 
devastated, leaving our children exposed to life-threatening pollution. 
This bill would cause hundreds of thousands more Americans to suffer 
from the dangerous and deadly impacts of air pollution. The bill's 
policy riders prevent the EPA from doing its job to protect public 
health and won't cut one dime from the deficit.
  The EPA has been actively engaged in helping clean up the air in 
Tonawanda, New York, which I proudly represent, and I stand by the 
agency's ability to continue doing the good work to improve the quality 
of life for

[[Page H5561]]

those residents. Rolling back the Clean Air Act, as is proposed under 
this legislation, will lead to more air pollution, more hospital visits 
and more deaths. We must support the Clean Air Act so that all 
Americans can breathe easier.
  I will mention one more of these abhorrent policy riders that should 
be struck from the bill. There is a rider in this legislation that will 
effectively open up a million acres of national forest and other public 
land around Grand Canyon National Park to new uranium mining claims. 
Democrats have concerns about maintaining the integrity of the Grand 
Canyon and the effect of uranium mining on water quality, not to 
mention the spectacle of auctioning off a national treasure with the 
proceeds going to mostly foreign-owned entities, including Russia's 
state atomic energy corporation and South Korea's state-owned utility. 
America is not for sale, Mr. Chair, even if Republicans would like us 
to believe otherwise.
  Mr. Chair, I stand firmly in opposition to the Majority's daily 
attempts to whittle away at the rules of the House. I urge my 
colleagues to oppose the Majority's protection of policy riders that 
endanger our public health and environment in favor of private 
interests, and to oppose the underlying legislation.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Washington (Mr. Dicks).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. DICKS. Mr. Chairman, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Washington 
will be postponed.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                              construction

       For construction, improvement, acquisition, or removal of 
     buildings and other facilities required in the conservation, 
     management, investigation, protection, and utilization of 
     fish and wildlife resources, and the acquisition of lands and 
     interests therein, $11,804,000, to remain available until 
     expended.

                            land acquisition

       For expenses necessary to carry out the Land and Water 
     Conservation Fund Act of 1965 (16 U.S.C. 460l-4 et seq.), 
     including administrative expenses, and for acquisition of 
     land or waters, or interest therein, in accordance with 
     statutory authority applicable to the United States Fish and 
     Wildlife Service, $15,047,000, to be derived from the Land 
     and Water Conservation Fund and to remain available until 
     expended, of which, notwithstanding 16 U.S.C. 460l-9, not 
     more than $4,000,000 shall be for land conservation 
     partnerships authorized by the Highlands Conservation Act of 
     2004, including not to exceed $120,000 for administrative 
     expenses.

            cooperative endangered species conservation fund

       For expenses necessary to carry out section 6 of the 
     Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1534 et seq.), 
     $2,854,000, to remain available until expended, to be derived 
     from the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund.

                     national wildlife refuge fund

       For expenses necessary to implement the Act of October 17, 
     1978 (16 U.S.C. 715s), $13,980,000.

               north american wetlands conservation fund

       For expenses necessary to carry out the provisions of the 
     North American Wetlands Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 4401 et 
     seq.), $20,000,000, to remain available until expended.


              Amendment Offered by Mr. Griffin of Arkansas

  Mr. GRIFFIN of Arkansas. I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 10, line 21, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $3,000,000)''.
       Page 65, line 19, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $3,000,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. GRIFFIN from Arkansas. Mr. Chairman, I rise to offer an amendment 
which will leverage our limited resources for wetlands and wildlife 
conservation.
  My amendment would transfer $3 million to the North American Wetlands 
Conservation Fund, or NAWCA, by reducing the EPA's operations and 
administration budget by the same amount.
  The EPA has been overfunded in recent years, and I appreciate 
Subcommittee Chairman Simpson's efforts to bring the agency's budget 
back down to size.
  This amendment makes a reasonable reduction to the EPA's 
administrative budget in favor of wetland conservation.
  Since this organization was established in 1989, more than 1,800 
projects have led to the conservation of over 24 million acres of 
wetlands across North America. Each of these projects is funded through 
a public/private partnership. And for every dollar of the 
organization's money that is spent in my home State of Arkansas, 
private sources and foundations have given $4 in matching funds.
  In Arkansas alone, 12 of these projects are either completed or 
currently under way. And these projects have conserved over 64,000 
acres of wetlands.
  Make no mistake, this success story is not limited to Arkansas. 
Wetlands, wildlife, and outdoorsmen in every single State in the 
country have seen the benefits of this conservation effort.
  Arkansas sits in the cradle of the Mississippi flyway, a migration 
route used by waterfowl as they fly to the southern United States each 
autumn. Migratory waterfowl and other birds often settle in the 
wetlands along the White River and Arkansas River, and the health of 
these habitats is closely tied to the health of the wildlife which 
inhabit them.
  This amendment would improve the condition of our Nation's wetlands 
and wildlife. This is important to sportsmen, conservationists, and 
anyone who enjoys the American outdoors.
  I urge my colleagues to support this commonsense conservation 
amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MORAN. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. Mr. Chairman, I have the voting record from February 16. I 
know the gentleman will recall H.R. 1 and the debate that ensued.
  In H.R. 1, the North American Wetlands Conservation Fund was zeroed 
out, and so I had an amendment to restore $50 million to the North 
American Wetlands Conservation Program. What I find curious--
confusing--is that the very gentleman that now wants to put money into 
the program voted ``no'' against putting the $50 million into the North 
American Wetlands Conservation Program back in the spring.
  Now, I do think it's an important program. I would like to see it 
continued. But I do have a problem with the fact that what we're doing 
when we want something to be funded, we take it out of the management 
of agencies--$3 million, $5 million, $6 billion--and when these 
amendments pass, you have a very damaging cumulative effect upon the 
ability of the agency to banish these programs. If this were to pass, 
we're now at $8 million that has been taken out of the management of 
EPA.
  So I would have to oppose the amendment. And I'm not sure how 
strongly the gentleman feels about it since he voted against restoring 
the money in February, as did a great many Members of the body, 
unfortunately, because it is a good program.
  I yield back the balance of my time.

                              {time}  2140

  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word, Mr. Chairman.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Mr. Chairman, I am prepared to accept the amendment. 
While the gentleman from Virginia offered an amendment on H.R. 1, which 
was several months ago, it was $50 million. We didn't have that kind of 
money. Because of the bipartisan support for this program, we did fund 
it to keep it alive at $20 million. And I have no problem putting the 
additional funding in, if the gentleman requests, depending on where he 
takes it from. So I support the gentleman's amendment and would hope 
that my friend from Virginia would think twice and support this 
amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Arkansas (Mr. Griffin).
  The amendment was agreed to.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                multinational species conservation fund

       For expenses necessary to carry out the African Elephant 
     Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 4201 et seq.), the Asian Elephant 
     Conservation Act of 1997 (16 U.S.C. 4261 et seq.), the

[[Page H5562]]

     Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Act of 1994 (16 U.S.C. 5301 
     et seq.), the Great Ape Conservation Act of 2000 (16 U.S.C. 
     6301 et seq.), and the Marine Turtle Conservation Act of 2004 
     (16 U.S.C. 6601 et seq.), $7,875,000, to remain available 
     until expended.

                    state and tribal wildlife grants

       For wildlife conservation grants to States and to the 
     District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the United States 
     Virgin Islands, the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, 
     and federally recognized Indian tribes under the provisions 
     of the Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 (16 U.S.C. 742a et seq.) 
     and the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 U.S.C. 661 et 
     seq.), for the development and implementation of programs for 
     the benefit of wildlife and their habitat, including species 
     that are not hunted or fished, $22,000,000, to remain 
     available until expended: Provided, That of the amount 
     provided herein, $2,000,000 is for a competitive grant 
     program for federally recognized Indian tribes not subject to 
     the remaining provisions of this appropriation: Provided 
     further, That the Secretary shall, after deducting $2,000,000 
     and administrative expenses, apportion the amount provided 
     herein in the following manner: (1) to the District of 
     Columbia and to the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, each a sum 
     equal to not more than one-half of 1 percent thereof; and (2) 
     to Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, 
     and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, each a 
     sum equal to not more than one-fourth of 1 percent thereof: 
     Provided further, That the Secretary shall apportion the 
     remaining amount in the following manner: (1) one-third of 
     which is based on the ratio to which the land area of such 
     State bears to the total land area of all such States; and 
     (2) two-thirds of which is based on the ratio to which the 
     population of such State bears to the total population of all 
     such States: Provided further, That the amounts apportioned 
     under this heading shall be adjusted equitably so that no 
     State shall be apportioned a sum which is less than 1 percent 
     of the amount available for apportionment under this heading 
     for any fiscal year or more than 5 percent of such amount: 
     Provided further, That the Federal share of grants shall not 
     exceed 50 percent of the total costs of such projects: 
     Provided further, That the non-Federal share of such projects 
     may not be derived from Federal grant programs.

                       administrative provisions

       The United States Fish and Wildlife Service may carry out 
     the operations of Service programs by direct expenditure, 
     contracts, grants, cooperative agreements and reimbursable 
     agreements with public and private entities. Appropriations 
     and funds available to the United States Fish and Wildlife 
     Service shall be available for repair of damage to public 
     roads within and adjacent to reservation areas caused by 
     operations of the Service; options for the purchase of land 
     at not to exceed $1 for each option; facilities incident to 
     such public recreational uses on conservation areas as are 
     consistent with their primary purpose; and the maintenance 
     and improvement of aquaria, buildings, and other facilities 
     under the jurisdiction of the Service and to which the United 
     States has title, and which are used pursuant to law in 
     connection with management, and investigation of fish and 
     wildlife resources: Provided, That notwithstanding 44 U.S.C. 
     501, the Service may, under cooperative cost sharing and 
     partnership arrangements authorized by law, procure printing 
     services from cooperators in connection with jointly produced 
     publications for which the cooperators share at least one-
     half the cost of printing either in cash or services and the 
     Service determines the cooperator is capable of meeting 
     accepted quality standards: Provided further, That the 
     Service may accept donated aircraft as replacements for 
     existing aircraft.

                         National Park Service

                 operation of the national park system

       For expenses necessary for the management, operation, and 
     maintenance of areas and facilities administered by the 
     National Park Service and for the general administration of 
     the National Park Service, $2,240,152,000, of which 
     $9,832,000 for planning and interagency coordination in 
     support of Everglades restoration and $97,883,000 for 
     maintenance, repair, or rehabilitation projects for 
     constructed assets, operation of the National Park Service 
     automated facility management software system, and 
     comprehensive facility condition assessments shall remain 
     available until September 30, 2013.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Tonko

  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 14, line 7, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $8,408,000)''.
       Page 14, line 19, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $8,408,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chair, I rise today to offer an amendment to H.R. 
2584, the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations 
Act for fiscal year 2012. The amendment is bipartisan and is supported 
by the Congressional National Heritage Caucus and the 49 National 
Heritage Areas across our country.
  The amendment is straightforward and modest. The amendment restores 
the National Heritage Area program within the National Park Service to 
the fiscal year 2010 funding levels. This amount is constant with the 
amount approved by Congress for the past several years. To pay for this 
increase, the amendment shifts $8,408,000 away from the Office of the 
National Parks Service account.
  From Alaska to Florida, the National Heritage Areas are the most 
effective public-private partnerships for resource conservation and 
heritage tourism supported by the Federal Government. While each of the 
49 National Heritage Areas currently in existence are authorized to 
receive $1 million in annual support through the Department of 
Interior, the National Heritage Area program has only been funded 
between $15 million and $18 million over the past 5 years by Congress, 
despite their success in revitalizing communities and conserving 
naturally significant resources with only modest Federal support.
  These public-private partnerships are perhaps the most cost-effective 
and efficient programs within the Department of Interior. Matching 
every dollar of Federal support with $5.50 of other public and private 
funding, National Heritage Areas are clearly a high-yield investment of 
Federal resources.
  To be clear, that investment results in over $100 million of economic 
activity. During a time when our economy is so fragile, we must support 
these programs that have a proven record of economic benefit. National 
Heritage Areas have such a proven record of fostering job creation and 
advancing economic, cultural, historic, environmental, and community 
development. In addition to creating jobs, National Heritage Areas 
generate valuable revenue for local governments and sustain communities 
through revitalization and heritage tourism.
  More specifically, in my district, a recent study released last year 
by my local heritage area, the Erie Canalway Heritage Corridor, found 
that visitors to heritage sites in the eastern part of the corridor--
found that nearly 1 million people visit heritage sites each year, 
generating some $38 million sales in local businesses, supporting 507 
local jobs.
  We must preserve sites that are historically significant. Doing so 
will increase community spirit as well as generate much-needed tourism 
dollars. A recent United States Cultural and Heritage Tourism Marketing 
Council and United States Department of Commerce study revealed that 
cultural heritage travelers contribute more than $192 billion annually 
to our United States economy. I would point out also that this tool, 
this opportunity for heritage areas enables given regions to have a 
stronger sense of marketing tools. They are able to promote a stronger 
sense of place and a much more dynamic bit of destination. That is a 
tool in the economic recovery toolkit that is tremendously valuable and 
important to these given host regions.
  I want to thank Representative Dent of Pennsylvania for offering this 
amendment with me today. He is the cochair of the National Heritage 
Area Caucus in the House, and he and his staff have been a pleasure to 
work with on this amendment. I also need to thank the ranking member on 
the committee, Mr. Dicks, and our ranker of the subcommittee, 
Representative Moran. They have been invaluable in their support in my 
effort for this amendment.
  Understanding today's difficult budgetary climate, I want to remind 
everyone that this amount is equal to the total appropriation for the 
program in the previous fiscal year and reflects the minimum level of 
support National Heritage Areas need to remain successful. I hope my 
colleagues will consider joining Mr. Dent and myself in supporting this 
modest funding level for a vitally important program.
  Mr. Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. DENT. I move to strike the last word, Mr. Chair.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Pennsylvania is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. DENT. Mr. Chairman, I do rise in support of the Tonko amendment. 
Mr. Tonko and I have offered this amendment for consideration by the 
House.

[[Page H5563]]

We are the cochairs of the Heritage Corridor Caucus. I represent the 
areas of the Delaware-Lehigh Heritage Corridor as well as the 
Schuylkill Valley Corridor in eastern Pennsylvania, and we have seen a 
great deal of positive activity as a result of these heritage areas. 
Specifically, as Mr. Tonko conveyed, a great deal of tourism activity, 
recreational opportunities, as well as economic development occurs as a 
result of this. Also, significant community development activities have 
been the result of our efforts and investment in these heritage areas.
  Obviously money is very tight, and this program is taking about a 50 
percent reduction under the underlying bill. The amendment before us 
will simply restore about $8.4 million to the heritage area, to the 
heritage partnership program; and we'll be taking that money, 
substituting it from the National Park Service, where we believe they 
have sufficient funds to operate.
  I support the underlying legislation. I know Chairman Simpson has put 
a lot of effort into this. I think he has really done a great deal, 
given the numbers he has had to work with. So I do support the 
underlying bill. But I think that this amendment strikes a proper 
balance and preserves and protects these heritage areas that are making 
a real impact across the country.
  I guess there are 49 of these heritage areas currently in existence, 
and most of them, I believe, are receiving under $1 million of support 
through the Interior Department. So I just think this is a program that 
is worthy of our support. We're just simply, in these tough economic 
times, trying to bring this program back to neutral. I know the 
administration did not, in their budget proposal, cut this program as 
well. But I think this might be one way this amendment could help us 
bring this program back to a level that will be sufficient in 
supporting these heritage areas.
  Again, as was stated by Mr. Tonko, these communities are benefiting. 
We are seeing so much tourist activity. We are seeing increased 
recreational opportunities. I know in my community, we are all of a 
sudden doing things on our rivers and discovering our rivers and the 
natural beauty of them that many of us had not really noticed before, 
and it's really as a result of this. Again, it brought the rivers back 
to life, economic life, community life, and it has become really, once 
again, the center of our existence. And a lot of this would not have 
been possible but for the efforts of these heritage areas. So, again, I 
rise in support of the Tonko-Dent amendment and would urge the House to 
adopt this.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MORAN. I move to strike the last word, Mr. Chairman.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. Mr. Chairman, I want our side to go on record in support 
of what Mr. Tonko and Mr. Dent are proposing. We have worked with them 
on this amendment.
  This is the kind of program that really ought to have unanimous 
support in the House. I mean, we're talking about very small amounts of 
money that are distributed throughout the country; oftentimes $150,000; 
sometimes it gets up to $700,000. But they are relatively small amounts 
of money.

                              {time}  2150

  And what they do is to bring local community leaders together. Local 
communities love it and, of course, it draws tourism. It gets into the 
newspaper, oftentimes into metropolitan newspapers suggesting this is a 
terrific day trip for families to go on. They follow the Heritage 
Trail.
  It has that kind of national recognition and credibility that only 
the Federal Government oftentimes can provide to a National Heritage 
Area, because many people claim it. But when the National Heritage 
Program identifies it as one of the true assets of our country and 
places that should be protected and preserved and explained to the 
public, then more people come. And it generates jobs; it generates 
economic activity.
  Mr. Wolf just put in an authorization. He probably won't get the full 
amount of money that's authorized, but it will get some for the Civil 
War Battlefield Crossroads Trail, and that's drawing people up with the 
sesquicentennial of the Civil War.
  All over the country. The Hudson River, there was a gentleman on the 
other side that opposed it when Mr. Hinchey put it in, had it 
designated. And then when he saw how successful it was, he said, Let's 
get my part of the Hudson River included.
  This is a really good program. It was funded at about $17 million, 50 
percent cut though. What are we doing? Talk about being penny-wise and 
pound-foolish, really. A 50 percent cut in it. It hurts the economies 
of any number of areas around the country.
  So we think that this is a very reasonable amendment, and we 
congratulate the caucus for coming forward and suggesting that the 
money be restored, and we hope that it will be.
  Mr. Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. First, let me thank the gentleman from Pennsylvania and 
the gentleman from New York for their amendment. I'm sympathetic to 
what they're trying to do and the work that they do in the National 
Heritage Caucus, and it's important work. But I rise in reluctant 
opposition to the amendment.
  While I'm sympathetic to the intent of the amendment and the 
increased funding for the National Heritage Areas, I'm concerned that 
the offset would take funds away from the account providing funds for 
operations of our national parks across the country.
  One of our goals in this bill was to provide sufficient funding for 
park operations so that every Park Service unit in the country would be 
open for business next year, without the threat of layoffs or furloughs 
for full-time or seasonal employees. My fear is that reducing this 
account by $8.8 million would undermine the operation of our national 
parks.
  Let me also point out that, while the amount in the bill is reduced 
from the fiscal year 2011 enacted level, the National Heritage Areas 
are funded in the bill at the amount requested by the President's 
budget. These National Heritage Areas are supposed to become self-
sufficient, and the problem is we're going to see that when that 
doesn't happen, the funding request from the President is going to not 
be in their budget and, consequently, there's not going to be any money 
for these National Heritage Areas requested by the administration.
  We funded this at the President's level. I appreciate what the 
gentlemen are trying to do. I support the National Heritage Areas 
program, but I, because of the offset, reluctantly oppose this 
amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from New York (Mr. Tonko).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. TONKO. Mr. Chairman, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from New York 
will be postponed.


                  Amendment No. 5 Offered by Mr. Amash

  Mr. AMASH. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 14, line 7, after the first dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $2,206,000)''.
       Page 158, line 25, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $2,206,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Michigan is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. AMASH. Mr. Chairman, did you know the Federal Government 
subsidizes the Goo Goo Dolls, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and the Gipsy Kings? What 
about the Culture Shock East Coast Dance Concert?
  Well, it does.
  My amendment to H.R. 2584 will reduce the deficit, save taxpayer 
dollars, and stop subsidies to bands, including the Beach Boys. This 
amendment will reduce the deficit by $2.2 million by transferring 
funding from the National Capital Area Performing Arts program to the 
spending reduction account.
  The National Capital Area Performing Arts program provides free

[[Page H5564]]

concerts and subsidized performances in and around Washington, DC, by 
paying for ushers, performers, lighting and other performance-related 
costs. The program funds venues like Carter Barron Amphitheater in DC. 
Even the National Park Service, which administers the program, has 
recommended its elimination, saying it distracts the Park Service from 
performing its core functions.
  My amendment is simple. It will transfer all of the program's $2.2 
million in funding to the spending reduction account. I like the Beach 
Boys as much as the next person, but that doesn't mean we should force 
taxpayers to subsidize my ticket if I go to their concert.
  Don't break taxpayers' trust. I urge my colleagues to support this 
commonsense amendment to prevent the wasteful spending of taxpayer 
dollars on niche entertainment programs in the Washington, DC, area.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MORAN. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. First of all, I'm not sure why you want the Beach Boys to 
be the issue here. We were just discussing Mr. Watt's tenure as 
Secretary of the Interior. That was not so successful when he came 
after the Beach Boys.
  But be that as it may, what we're really talking about here are a 
number of nonprofit organizations, and these are national memorials. 
Ford's Theater, Wolf Trap. I guess because the Beach Boys performed at 
Wolf Trap they are an issue. Actually, I would recommend to the 
gentleman that he watch them perform. I guess it's more my age than 
yours that can relate to them, but it was a pretty good performance. 
But I digress.
  We're talking about Ford's Theater, Wolf Trap, Carter Barron, all 
part of the National Park System. The Kennedy Center is a national 
memorial. These are performing arts right here on the Capitol grounds 
as well.
  Now we're talking about nationally significant sites, and the 
performances that occur, in fact, are part of the mission of these 
sites. They were authorized for members of the public, the taxpaying 
public, to come to a nonprofit venue and, in fact, be entertained. The 
national parks do that. They entertain the public that pays for them, 
sometimes by seeing iconic sites, sometimes by hiking and camping, 
sometimes it's by performances. So the National Park Service is in 
keeping with its mission to interpret the purpose of these national 
sites.

  These performances are seen by citizens, in fact, all over the 
country. Many people who visit our Nation's Capitol attend these 
performances as part of their trip to the District of Columbia. And the 
crowds that fill the West Lawn of the Capitol on Memorial Day and the 
Fourth of July are testament to the public's support for this program.
  In fact, if you were there on Memorial Day or the Fourth of July and 
turned to see the crowd, there are people as far as the eye can see, 
people representative of this vast, diverse country, and every single 
one of them had a smile on their face. Every single one of them was 
delighted, overjoyed that they were able to participate and appreciate 
and enjoy the performance that was put on on the Fourth of July and 
Memorial Day. That's part of our Nation's heritage. It's a proud part.
  This amendment would do real harm to programs enjoyed by millions of 
Americans.
  I would also suggest that this line item has already suffered a 
virtually devastating cut. It was funded at about $10 million. It's 
been cut to about $2 million. I mean, it's just barely hanging on. And 
now this amendment would eliminate it?

                              {time}  2200

  I mean, think about this. I know that some of the Members, at least 
as many Members of the majority side as the minority side, were there 
for the Memorial Day concert. I saw them. I was sitting with them. The 
chairman of the full Appropriations Committee, the chairmen of the 
subcommittees, the leadership of the House and Senate were all there 
honoring our troops.
  Mr. DICKS. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. MORAN. I yield to the gentleman from Washington.
  Mr. DICKS. Colin Powell was there to thank all of the troops that had 
served in Iraq and Afghanistan, and many of the wounded warriors were 
there as well.
  Mr. MORAN. Not only were they there but Team 6 that had just dealt 
with Osama bin Laden in a fairly definitive manner, SEAL Team 6 was 
there. We couldn't identify them, but we all applauded for them, and 
they couldn't have been more overjoyed.
  The gentleman makes a very good point. Colin Powell was basically the 
master of ceremonies.
  Now, this is what we want to eliminate? This is what is such a threat 
to our budget as taking so much money? It's not taking that much money, 
and whatever money it's taking, it's giving back far more in return.
  Mr. DICKS. I thank the gentleman for yielding and I hope we can 
defeat this unneeded amendment.
  Mr. MORAN. I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to the amendment, and 
I agree with the words that were spoken by the gentlemen from Virginia 
and from Washington.
  In these tough economic times, it is important that we keep some 
things that are very important, I think, to the American people. If you 
look at the programs that have been put on by the Capitol concerts on 
the Fourth of July and on Memorial Day and what they've done for our 
troops and for really the spirit of America, I think is vitally 
important. They do things at Ford's Theater and other places around 
this country.
  We have to remember: this is our Nation's Capital. The things they do 
here are important. They're important for our country, not just for 
this small piece of land we call Washington, DC. So I hope that Members 
on both sides of the aisle would recognize the importance of these 
programs and the work they do and the importance that they have for the 
American people and would reject this amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Amash).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. AMASH. Mr. Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Michigan 
will be postponed.
  The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                  national recreation and preservation

       For expenses necessary to carry out recreation programs, 
     natural programs, cultural programs, heritage partnership 
     programs, environmental compliance and review, international 
     park affairs, and grant administration, not otherwise 
     provided for, $49,363,000.


                    Amendment Offered by Ms. Norton

  Ms. NORTON. I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 14, line 19, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $300,000)(increased by $300,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from the District of Columbia is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  Ms. NORTON. Mr. Chairman, my amendment would designate $300,000 from 
the National Recreation and Preservation Account for a National Park 
Service study of whether applying the same rules and regulations to all 
parks maximizes the highest and best use of individual parks, for the 
system as a whole, and for Americans who use our parks.
  This is but a study, and it would require the National Park Service 
to look at how NPS, cities, counties and States, as well as other 
countries, manage their diverse parks and to suggest, from the 
available best practices, appropriate ways to help NPS meet the needs 
of individual communities within the basic uniformity necessary to 
operate a national system of parks. Today, the NPS applies the same 
rules and regulations to all its parks, regardless

[[Page H5565]]

of location, from the almost 1200-square-mile Yosemite National Park to 
small urban parks on street corners.
  I support a unified national park system, but NPS should develop 
flexible standards that take into account the unique circumstances and 
population of individual parks and changing conditions throughout the 
country in keeping with congressional recognition of both conservation 
and recreation as primary reasons for our parks. The neighborhood parks 
in the District of Columbia, for example, serve a very different 
function from Yellowstone. Dupont Circle Park is a central urban 
community meeting place in the District, not a place for enjoying the 
greenery of nature, as much as we love our parks for that purpose. On 
any given day, you will find people playing chess, sunbathing, playing 
Frisbee or passing out fliers.
  Madam Chair, I have come to the floor because I have tried, 
unsuccessfully, to get the Park Service to make small adaptations 
perfectly compatible with their mission to allow for the people in the 
parks in my own district, and I am certain that other Members have 
found similar roadblocks. For example, the Park Service won't allow 
bike share stations on or near Federal parks, and they are not 
permitting the three golf courses in the District of Columbia to be run 
as a public-private partnership. Both of these examples have run into 
the same one-size-fits-all concession concerns.
  Yet the National Park Service could negotiate concession agreements 
that accommodate bike share in the future; and an inflexibility in Park 
Service insistence on concession contracts that do not allow capital 
investment resulting in an astonishing deterioration of invaluable 
capital-intensive golf courses in the District could give way to other 
approaches, such as public-private partnerships operating under long-
term leases that would allow private funding to assist the Park Service 
with upgrading and maintaining these public assets with Congress, which 
the taxpayers can't possibly by themselves maintain.
  Inflexible, one-size-fits-all policies keep Americans from using our 
parks for compatible purposes, such as bike stations, or, worse, 
condemn unique iconic resources to inevitable decline.
  Madam Chairman, my amendment is of the lowest possible cost. It is 
for a study to tell us what to do, to tell the Park Service what to do, 
to allow people throughout this country who live in very different 
locations and have to use our parks in very different ways just how 
this must be done compatible with a uniform National Park Service.
  I ask that my amendment be approved.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MORAN. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR (Ms. Foxx). The gentleman from Virginia is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. Madam Chairman, I think we have a problem in the 
amendment, itself, because it would specifically designate a study that 
might be interpreted as some type of earmark, which I don't think it 
really is.
  I like what the gentlelady is trying to do. I think it's important. I 
think we ought to have a consideration by the Park Service of whether 
they are sufficiently flexible in dealing with local communities.

                              {time}  2210

  There was a recent article written in The Washington Post talking 
about some of the opportunities that exist to bring the community into 
local parks, urban parks, where far more people could be involved, 
people could participate, people could enhance the enjoyment of things 
that take place. For example, if there is a large soccer event at a 
park that is controlled by the National Park Service, you could bring 
the whole community in to watch it on a large screen.
  There is no question but that we could find ways to discourage 
automobiles and encourage bikes--have bike sharing, for example, on The 
National Mall so that people could rent bikes and bike around The Mall. 
It wouldn't cause any environmental damage; in fact, it would preserve 
some of the lawn on our National Mall. Some people would enjoy it more 
and they would get a little exercise. Just all kinds of ideas that 
might be proposed by communities.
  I remember being out in Washington State, San Juan Island. This was a 
little place. It's a national park because there was a bizarre military 
conflict that occurred out there. I won't go into the whole military 
conflict, but the people there love the bunny rabbits that are there. 
Well, the Park Service decided that they're really not a native 
species, there are too many of them, so the Park Service decided 
they're going to use the method they use at other places. First of all, 
they thought they would gas them, which the community was shocked by. 
Then they decided, well, we'll shoot them and so on, reduce the 
population. You know, if they had just sat down with members of the 
community, they could have figured out how to keep these bunnies that 
the community wanted, avoid a whole lot of negative attitude with 
regard to the Park Service, and in fact enhance the enjoyment of this 
little national park at San Juan.
  I'm sure there are examples all over the country, in fact, all over 
the world, because the National Park Service has any number of parks 
outside the physical boundaries of our North American continent. We've 
got the Virgin Islands and so on.
  I don't know what the local neighborhoods might suggest, but I do 
know that they have a lot of good ideas, ideas that the National Park 
Service ought to consider thoughtfully. And some will be rejected, but 
some might well be accepted. But the process of that kind of community 
input, it seems to me, would generate even more support for the 
National Park Service.
  It's a great institution. Our parks are iconic assets to our Nation. 
But I do think that the local community could enjoy them more and 
appreciate the National Park Service's role more if we had the kind of 
dialogue with the Park Service that Ms. Norton is suggesting.
  I don't see any harm in having that kind of study. I think we ought 
to be able to work with the gentlelady, maybe put together some report 
language, at least a letter to the head of the National Park Service 
suggesting that this is an area that the Congress itself, in a 
bipartisan way, thinks ought to be explored.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. MORAN. I yield to the gentleman from Idaho.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I would say that I think the gentleman has stated the 
case as it is. It is an earmark, and that's a whole other story we can 
talk about.
  But I agree with what the gentlelady is trying to do here. And I will 
tell you that both the ranking member and I will work with the 
gentlelady from the District of Columbia to try to resolve this in 
conference so that we can do what you're trying to accomplish here 
because I think it is important.
  Mr. MORAN. The gentlelady is smiling, so I will accept her 
concurrence. We will move forward in that fashion if the gentlelady 
wouldn't mind withdrawing her amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. NORTON. I appreciate the remarks of the chairman and the ranking 
member. In light of those remarks and their generosity, I do withdraw 
my amendment and will work with them to try to implement it in other 
ways.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the amendment is withdrawn.
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                       historic preservation fund

       For expenses necessary in carrying out the National 
     Historic Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 470), and the Omnibus 
     Parks and Public Lands Management Act of 1996 (Public Law 
     104-333), $49,500,000, to be derived from the Historic 
     Preservation Fund and to remain available until September 30, 
     2013.

                              construction

       For construction, improvements, repair, or replacement of 
     physical facilities, including modifications authorized by 
     section 104 of the Everglades National Park Protection and 
     Expansion Act of 1989 (16 U.S.C. 410r-8), $152,121,000, to 
     remain available until expended.


                    Amendment Offered by Mr. Carter

  Mr. CARTER. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 15, line 8, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $1,000,000) (increased by $1,000,000 )''.


[[Page H5566]]


  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Texas is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. CARTER. Madam Chairman, this is an amendment that was put 
together to ensure that the Interior Department prioritize its efforts 
to construct a joint law enforcement center in national parks and 
recreation areas along the southern border of the United States with 
available funds.
  National Park lands on our southern border have experienced a 
gigantic increase in the amount of illegal activity that has crossed 
into our park lands. The reason for this is very similar to grabbing a 
bean bag and squeezing it; it always bulges out at some point. As we 
start tightening our southern border with a lot of the efforts that 
have been bipartisan efforts by this Congress, it causes the people who 
are wanting to have illegal activity to move farther and farther out 
into the rural areas and into the unoccupied areas, and they're moving 
into our national parks.
  Joint law enforcement centers will be available to serve the National 
Park Service law enforcement agency, the United States Customs and 
Border Patrol, possibly even the Coast Guard when they're on the river 
at that border, and other Federal, State, or local law enforcement 
agencies as may be needed.
  This is something that has been discussed; it has been agreed upon; 
it has been approved. Additional rangers and Border Patrol officers 
have been added to our border and been assigned and are being 
compensated for working down there, but they lack serious facilities 
within which to be able to operate.
  One example is when we sent a group down to take a look at what other 
needs might be on our southern border, we ran across eight Border 
Patrol officers that were working in a temporary facility that was 288 
square feet. This is absolutely inadequate. And if they were working in 
conjunction with the Park Service, there was no place for the Park 
Service to even stand in the building.
  The purpose of this amendment is to dedicate $1 million to the 
National Park Service construction funds for FY 2012 to jump-start the 
interagency project already agreed upon between the Departments of 
Interior and Homeland Security. We are confident that with this shot in 
the arm we will be able to get these centers, as they may be available, 
constructed.
  And it's not just a place for these folks to work; but if you take a 
look at most of our southern border from all the way across, you will 
see that, if there is no place to hold prisoners when they're captured 
doing illegal activities, then you have to transport them. In many 
instances, this transportation is 150 miles to a place where they can 
be secured. And these would also allow at least for temporary detention 
so that we wouldn't have Border Patrol officers running back and forth 
150 miles every time there's a detention needed.
  This is a facility that really will aid what we've already provided, 
which is personnel to help defend our southern border. It is budget 
neutral, and I would respectfully request that this be adopted.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. CARTER. I yield to the gentleman from Idaho.
  Mr. SIMPSON. We are prepared on this side to accept the gentleman's 
amendment.
  Mr. CARTER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
  I yield back the balance of my time.

                              {time}  2220

  Mr. MORAN. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. I am not necessarily rising to oppose this, but to point 
out some deficiencies in the amendment itself. The claim is that the 
purpose of the amendment is to ensure that the National Park Service 
prioritizes its construction of law enforcement centers on national 
park lands, on the southern border in coordination with the Department 
of Homeland Security.
  First of all, there is some feeling that national parks not have 
basically prison sites on them because what happens is that when people 
are rounded up by the Border Patrol, they are taken to these law 
enforcement centers and detained until they--I don't know whether they 
are adjudicated or not, but then eventually they are moved to another 
place. But they are temporarily detained at these law enforcement 
centers, and there is some feeling that national parks are not an 
appropriate location for that purpose.
  But the very wording of the amendment doesn't really do that. It 
increases money, then it decreases the same amount of money. If it did 
it, it would be an earmark. And, of course, we don't do earmarks in 
this bill.
  So as I say, I don't rise in opposition because I'm not sure what the 
amendment does, but I think it is helpful to be informed as to what it 
doesn't do.
  Mr. CARTER. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. MORAN. I yield to the gentleman from Texas.
  Mr. CARTER. I thank the gentleman.
  It is my understanding that this joint agreement, as we saw the 
acceleration of park rangers, and you're right, quite honestly, I don't 
think anywhere on the southern border people want illegal activity to 
be going on on our recreational areas, wherever they might be located. 
And nobody is trying to warehouse prisoners in a national park.
  It is hard to envision this facility, but it would be a facility, I 
would assume, sort of like some of the facilities you see in other 
locations where people are operating out of it, but they have a 
temporary detention holding cell.
  This would be strictly--and maybe I can explain it by pointing out 
one of the problems we have on the border with the transportation of 
our prisoners. And, in fact, one of the things that we used our 
National Guard for when we did have to transfer prisoners when they 
were working on the border, there always has to be someone having this 
prisoner in custody. Whatever the accused crime is, they have to be in 
custody.
  When we had limited resources, we bumped them up. But they take a 
trained border patrolman whose duty it is to protect our border, if 
he's the only person available, and he has to transport that prisoner 
because there's no facility to temporarily hold him in. And when I say 
``temporarily,'' it could be hours or maybe even minutes until someone 
can come along to help transport. If he's alone, then he has to 
transport him 150 miles. That's 3 hours that officer is off his post to 
make the transport.
  So that's a little, tiny part for the purpose of this facility. This 
facility is really for a working space for those resources that we have 
already beefed up and put down on the border, and both Interior and 
Homeland have made agreements and really it is kind of just a kick to 
get them started. I believe we will see funding come from both sources 
to finish the project.
  Mr. MORAN. Reclaiming my time, I understand that the gentleman wants 
to make that point. I understand the challenges that are faced in the 
area that he represents.
  I was similarly confused, though, when there was a substantial 
amendment to strip funding for environmental mitigation between the 
Homeland Security and Interior Departments that the gentleman 
previously suggested and, I think, was successful in doing. So I don't 
know, it's not an area that I'm particularly familiar with. I am 
becoming more familiar with it; but, again, I'm not sure that this 
amendment does anything other than draw attention to the issue.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Carter).
  The amendment was agreed to.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Mica

  Mr. MICA. I have an amendment at the desk.
  Mr. DICKS. Madam Chair, we don't have a copy of the gentleman's 
amendment, and it is usually the protocol to give one to the minority.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 15, line 8, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $2,000,000)''.
       Page 65, line 19, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $2,000,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Florida is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MICA. Thank you, Madam Chair, and I am sorry the minority didn't 
have a copy of this fine amendment. It was modified slightly from the 
original

[[Page H5567]]

submission to comply with the requirements of the Parliamentarian to be 
in order.
  Let me say at this late hour I won't take too much time. I am from 
the authorizing side, and it's always good to come here and hear the 
difficulties that the appropriators have in trying to make choices, and 
tonight is about making choices.
  I do have to compliment Mr. Simpson, the chair of the subcommittee; 
Mr. Hastings, the chair of the full committee; and the ranking members, 
Mr. Moran and Mr. Dicks, for their efforts, being up late at night and 
making these difficult choices in some very tough economic times.
  Normally, I wouldn't come here and tell you what to do; but, again, 
coming from a State that has some 11 parks and preserves and national 
monuments, I have a great interest in some of these accounts.
  Now, we all have to set priorities; and as I said, these are 
difficult times. The Department of the Interior, I noticed, had, I 
guess, in 2010 just under $11 billion that's being cut to $9.8 billion, 
a 7 percent reduction. People ask me about transportation projects. 
Whether it is FAA, on transportation, I'm reducing some of the accounts 
by 30 percent in authorization, so I know the difficulty you're facing.
  Now, I also looked at some of the other accounts here. EPA, I think 
folks would be shocked to find EPA has $7.1 billion in this bill. 
That's quite a bit to operate that agency. Well, the National Park 
Service has $2.5 billion. I think if you ask people on the street where 
would you put the dollars, I think they would like to see something 
very tangible. They appreciate their national parks. And, again, you 
have difficult priorities.
  My amendment is simple. It takes $2 million out of EPA's account for 
management programs, and it transfers it to the National Park 
Construction Account.
  Now, this is not going to resolve a $10 billion backlog in 
maintenance and construction projects. I can give you examples. Just a 
few miles from here, Harpers Ferry, they have a $59 million deferred 
maintenance account pending. Florida, with its 11 parks and preserves 
and national monuments, has a $4 million backlog. And, again, my 
amendment won't solve even Florida's problem.

                              {time}  2230

  Even closer to home in my district--and I want to thank again the 
chairman of the committee and the chairman of the subcommittee and 
staff for working with me--we are attempting, after authorization in 
2004, to finally finish a visitors center. I want to make certain that 
the Castillo San Marco Visitor Center and the backlog of some of 
Florida's 11 parks and national monuments, their maintenance and some 
of their construction costs, that we have those funds available. So 
that's why I offered this amendment.
  Again, I know you have difficult choices. This won't resolve the 
pending needs either in the State of Florida or nationally. That being 
said, and also stating my position and intent, and knowing that the 
committee and I know Mr. Simpson is anxious to work with me and is 
committed to work with me, Mr. Hastings and staff, and in the interest 
of time and also not pressing the issue beyond my ability to retain my 
friendship and strong working relationship, I ask unanimous consent to 
withdraw my amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the amendment is withdrawn.
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                    land and water conservation fund

                              (rescission)

       The contract authority provided for fiscal year 2012 by 16 
     U.S.C. 460l-10a is hereby rescinded.

                 land acquisition and state assistance

       For expenses necessary to carry out the Land and Water 
     Conservation Act of 1965, as amended (16 U.S.C. 460l-4 
     through 11), including administrative expenses, and for 
     acquisition of lands or waters, or interest therein, in 
     accordance with the statutory authority applicable to the 
     National Park Service, $18,294,000, to be derived from the 
     Land and Water Conservation Fund and to remain available 
     until expended, of which $2,794,000 is for the State 
     assistance program and of which $2,000,000 shall be for the 
     American Battlefield Protection Program grants as authorized 
     by section 7301 of the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 
     2009 (Public Law 111-11).

                       administrative provisions

                     (including transfer of funds)

       In addition to other uses set forth in section 407(d) of 
     Public Law 105-391, franchise fees credited to a sub-account 
     shall be available for expenditure by the Secretary, without 
     further appropriation, for use at any unit within the 
     National Park System to extinguish or reduce liability for 
     Possessory Interest or leasehold surrender interest. Such 
     funds may only be used for this purpose to the extent that 
     the benefiting unit anticipated franchise fee receipts over 
     the term of the contract at that unit exceed the amount of 
     funds used to extinguish or reduce liability. Franchise fees 
     at the benefiting unit shall be credited to the sub-account 
     of the originating unit over a period not to exceed the term 
     of a single contract at the benefiting unit, in the amount of 
     funds so expended to extinguish or reduce liability.
       National Park Service funds may be transferred to the 
     Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Department of 
     Transportation, for purposes authorized under section 204 of 
     title 23, United States Code. Transfers may include a 
     reasonable amount for FHWA administrative support costs.

                    United States Geological Survey

                 surveys, investigations, and research

       For expenses necessary for the United States Geological 
     Survey to perform surveys, investigations, and research 
     covering topography, geology, hydrology, biology, and the 
     mineral and water resources of the United States, its 
     territories and possessions, and other areas as authorized by 
     43 U.S.C. 31, 1332, and 1340; classify lands as to their 
     mineral and water resources; give engineering supervision to 
     power permittees and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 
     licensees; administer the minerals exploration program (30 
     U.S.C. 641); conduct inquiries into the economic conditions 
     affecting mining and materials processing industries (30 
     U.S.C. 3, 21a, and 1603; 50 U.S.C. 98g(1)) and related 
     purposes as authorized by law; and to publish and disseminate 
     data relative to the foregoing activities; $1,053,552,000, to 
     remain available until September 30, 2013, of which 
     $65,561,000 shall be available only for cooperation with 
     States or municipalities for water resources investigations: 
     Provided, That none of the funds provided for the ecosystem 
     research activity shall be used to conduct new surveys on 
     private property, unless specifically authorized in writing 
     by the property owner: Provided further, That no part of this 
     appropriation shall be used to pay more than one-half the 
     cost of topographic mapping or water resources data 
     collection and investigations carried on in cooperation with 
     States and municipalities.

                       administrative provisions

       From within the amount appropriated for activities of the 
     United States Geological Survey (USGS) such sums as are 
     necessary shall be available for reimbursement to the General 
     Services Administration for security guard services; 
     contracting for the furnishing of topographic maps and for 
     the making of geophysical or other specialized surveys when 
     it is administratively determined that such procedures are in 
     the public interest; construction and maintenance of 
     necessary buildings and appurtenant facilities; acquisition 
     of lands for gauging stations and observation wells; expenses 
     of the United States National Committee on Geology; and 
     payment of compensation and expenses of persons on the rolls 
     of the USGS duly appointed to represent the United States in 
     the negotiation and administration of interstate compacts: 
     Provided, That activities funded by appropriations herein 
     made may be accomplished through the use of contracts, 
     grants, or cooperative agreements as defined in section 6302 
     of title 31, United States Code: Provided further, That the 
     United States Geological Survey may enter into contracts or 
     cooperative agreements directly with individuals or 
     indirectly with institutions or nonprofit organizations, 
     without regard to 41 U.S.C. 5, for the temporary or 
     intermittent services of students or recent graduates, who 
     shall be considered employees for the purpose of chapters 57 
     and 81 of title 5, United States Code, relating to 
     compensation for travel and work injuries, and chapter 171 of 
     title 28, United States Code, relating to tort claims, but 
     shall not be considered to be Federal employees for any other 
     purposes.

     Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement

                        ocean energy management

       For expenses necessary for minerals leasing and 
     environmental studies and regulation of industry operations, 
     as authorized by law; for enforcing laws and regulations 
     applicable to oil, gas, and other minerals leases, permits, 
     licenses and operating contracts; for energy-related or other 
     authorized marine-related purposes on the Outer Continental 
     Shelf; and for matching grants or cooperative agreements, 
     $138,605,000, to remain available until September 30, 2013; 
     and an amount not to exceed $160,163,000, to be credited to 
     this appropriation and to remain available until expended, 
     from additions to receipts resulting from increases to rates 
     in effect on August 5, 1993, and from cost recovery fees: 
     Provided, That notwithstanding 31 U.S.C. 3302, in fiscal year 
     2012, such amounts as are assessed under 31 U.S.C. 9701 shall 
     be collected and credited to this account and

[[Page H5568]]

     shall be available until expended for necessary expenses: 
     Provided further, That to the extent $160,163,000 in addition 
     to receipts are not realized from the sources of receipts 
     stated above, the amount needed to reach $160,163,000 shall 
     be credited to this appropriation from receipts resulting 
     from rental rates for Outer Continental Shelf leases in 
     effect before August 5, 1993: Provided further, That for 
     fiscal year 2012 and each fiscal year thereafter, the term 
     ``qualified Outer Continental Shelf revenues'', as defined in 
     section 102(9)(A) of the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act 
     of 2006 (title I of division C of Public Law 109-432; 43 
     U.S.C. note), shall include only the portion of rental 
     revenues that would have been collected at the rental rates 
     in effect before August 5, 1993: Provided further, That not 
     to exceed $3,000 shall be available for reasonable expenses 
     related to promoting volunteer beach and marine cleanup 
     activities.
       For an additional amount, $10,000,000, to remain available 
     until expended: Provided, That section 115 of the Department 
     of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies 
     Appropriations Act, 2010 (division A of Public Law 111-88; 
     123 Stat. 2928) shall apply for fiscal year 2012, and in such 
     application ``2012'' shall be substituted for ``2010'': 
     Provided further, That such amount shall be derived from 
     receipts resulting from such application: Provided further, 
     That to the extent that such amount is not received by the 
     United States as a result of such application, the amount 
     needed to reach $10,000,000 shall be credited to this 
     appropriation from receipts resulting from rental rates for 
     Outer Continental Shelf leases in effect before August 5, 
     1993.

                           oil spill research

       For necessary expenses to carry out title I, section 1016, 
     title IV, sections 4202 and 4303, title VII, and title VIII, 
     section 8201 of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, $14,923,000, 
     which shall be derived from the Oil Spill Liability Trust 
     Fund, to remain available until expended.

          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement

                       regulation and technology

       For necessary expenses to carry out the provisions of the 
     Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, Public 
     Law 95-87, as amended, $123,050,000, to remain available 
     until September 30, 2013: Provided, That appropriations for 
     the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement may 
     provide for the travel and per diem expenses of State and 
     tribal personnel attending Office of Surface Mining 
     Reclamation and Enforcement sponsored training: Provided 
     further, That, in fiscal year 2012, up to $40,000 collected 
     by the Office of Surface Mining from permit fees pursuant to 
     section 507 of Public Law 95-87 (30 U.S.C. 1257) shall be 
     credited to this account as discretionary offsetting 
     collections, to remain available until expended: Provided 
     further, That the sum herein appropriated shall be reduced as 
     collections are received during the fiscal year so as to 
     result in a final fiscal year 2012 appropriation estimated at 
     not more than $123,010,000: Provided further, That, in 
     subsequent fiscal years, all amounts collected by the Office 
     of Surface Mining from permit fees pursuant to section 507 of 
     Public Law 95-87 (30 U.S.C. 1257) shall be credited to this 
     account as discretionary offsetting collections, to remain 
     available until expended.

                    abandoned mine reclamation fund

       For necessary expenses to carry out title IV of the Surface 
     Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977, Public Law 95-87, 
     as amended, $27,443,000, to be derived from receipts of the 
     Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund and to remain available until 
     expended: Provided, That pursuant to Public Law 97-365, the 
     Department of the Interior is authorized to use up to 20 
     percent from the recovery of the delinquent debt owed to the 
     United States Government to pay for contracts to collect 
     these debts: Provided further, That amounts provided under 
     this heading may be used for the travel and per diem expenses 
     of State and tribal personnel attending Office of Surface 
     Mining Reclamation and Enforcement sponsored training.

                        administrative provision

       With funds available for the Technical Innovation and 
     Professional Services program in this Act, the Secretary may 
     transfer title for computer hardware, software and other 
     technical equipment to State and tribal regulatory and 
     reclamation programs.

        Bureau of Indian Affairs and Bureau of Indian Education

                      operation of indian programs

                     (including transfer of funds)

       For expenses necessary for the operation of Indian 
     programs, as authorized by law, including the Snyder Act of 
     November 2, 1921 (25 U.S.C. 13), the Indian Self-
     Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975 (25 U.S.C. 
     450 et seq.), as amended, the Education Amendments of 1978 
     (25 U.S.C. 2001-2019), and the Tribally Controlled Schools 
     Act of 1988 (25 U.S.C. 2501 et seq.), as amended, 
     $2,333,690,000, to remain available until September 30, 2013, 
     except as otherwise provided herein; of which not to exceed 
     $8,500 may be for official reception and representation 
     expenses; and of which not to exceed $74,911,000 shall be for 
     welfare assistance payments, except that, in cases of 
     designated Federal disasters, the Secretary may exceed such 
     cap, from the amounts provided herein, to provide for 
     disaster relief to Indian communities affected by the 
     disaster; and of which, notwithstanding any other provision 
     of law, including but not limited to the Indian Self-
     Determination Act of 1975, as amended, not to exceed 
     $228,000,000 shall be available for payments for contract 
     support costs associated with ongoing contracts, grants, 
     compacts, or annual funding agreements entered into with the 
     Bureau of Indian Affairs prior to or during fiscal year 2012, 
     as authorized by such Act, except that tribes and tribal 
     organizations may use their tribal priority allocations for 
     unmet contract support costs of ongoing contracts, grants, or 
     compacts, or annual funding agreements and for unmet welfare 
     assistance costs; and of which not to exceed $584,369,000 for 
     school operations costs of Bureau-funded schools and other 
     education programs shall become available on July 1, 2012, 
     and shall remain available until September 30, 2013; and of 
     which not to exceed $48,049,000 shall remain available until 
     expended for housing improvement, road maintenance, attorney 
     fees, litigation support, the Indian Self-Determination Fund, 
     land records improvement, and the Navajo-Hopi Settlement 
     Program: Provided, That notwithstanding any other provision 
     of law, including but not limited to the Indian Self-
     Determination Act of 1975, as amended, and 25 U.S.C. 2008, 
     not to exceed $46,373,000 within and only from such amounts 
     made available for school operations shall be available for 
     administrative cost grants associated with ongoing grants 
     entered into with the Bureau prior to or during fiscal year 
     2011 for the operation of Bureau-funded schools, and up to 
     $500,000 within and only from such amounts made available for 
     administrative cost grants shall be available for the 
     transitional costs of initial administrative cost grants to 
     grantees that assume operation on or after July 1, 2011, of 
     Bureau-funded schools: Provided further, That any forestry 
     funds allocated to a tribe which remain unobligated as of 
     September 30, 2013, may be transferred during fiscal year 
     2014 to an Indian forest land assistance account established 
     for the benefit of the holder of the funds within the 
     holder's trust fund account: Provided further, That any such 
     unobligated balances not so transferred shall expire on 
     September 30, 2014: Provided further, That in order to 
     enhance the safety of Bureau field employees, the Bureau may 
     use funds to purchase uniforms or other identifying articles 
     of clothing for personnel.

                              construction

                     (including transfer of funds)

       For construction, repair, improvement, and maintenance of 
     irrigation and power systems, buildings, utilities, and other 
     facilities, including architectural and engineering services 
     by contract; acquisition of lands, and interests in lands; 
     and preparation of lands for farming, and for construction of 
     the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project pursuant to Public Law 
     87-483, $154,992,000, to remain available until expended: 
     Provided, That such amounts as may be available for the 
     construction of the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project may be 
     transferred to the Bureau of Reclamation: Provided further, 
     That not to exceed 6 percent of contract authority available 
     to the Bureau of Indian Affairs from the Federal Highway 
     Trust Fund may be used to cover the road program management 
     costs of the Bureau: Provided further, That any funds 
     provided for the Safety of Dams program pursuant to 25 U.S.C. 
     13 shall be made available on a nonreimbursable basis: 
     Provided further, That in implementing new construction or 
     facilities improvement and repair project grants in excess of 
     $100,000 that are provided to grant schools under Public Law 
     100-297, as amended, the Secretary of the Interior shall use 
     the Administrative and Audit Requirements and Cost Principles 
     for Assistance Programs contained in part 12 of title 43, 
     Code of Federal Regulations as the regulatory requirements: 
     Provided further, That such grants shall not be subject to 
     section 12.61 of such title; the Secretary and the grantee 
     shall negotiate and determine a schedule of payments for the 
     work to be performed: Provided further, That in considering 
     grant applications, the Secretary shall consider whether such 
     grantee would be deficient in assuring that the construction 
     projects conform to applicable building standards and codes 
     and Federal, tribal, or State health and safety standards as 
     required by 25 U.S.C. 2005(b), with respect to organizational 
     and financial management capabilities: Provided further, That 
     if the Secretary declines a grant application, the Secretary 
     shall follow the requirements contained in 25 U.S.C. 2504(f): 
     Provided further, That any disputes between the Secretary and 
     any grantee concerning a grant shall be subject to the 
     disputes provision in 25 U.S.C. 2507(e): Provided further, 
     That in order to ensure timely completion of construction 
     projects, the Secretary may assume control of a project and 
     all funds related to the project, if, within 18 months of the 
     date of enactment of this Act, any grantee receiving funds 
     appropriated in this Act or in any prior Act has not 
     completed the planning and design phase of the project and 
     commenced construction: Provided further, That this 
     appropriation may be reimbursed from the Office of the 
     Special Trustee for American Indians appropriation for the 
     appropriate share of construction costs for space expansion 
     needed in agency offices to meet trust reform implementation.

 indian land and water claim settlements and miscellaneous payments to 
                                indians

       For payments and necessary administrative expenses for 
     implementation of Indian

[[Page H5569]]

     land and water claim settlements pursuant to Public Laws 99-
     264, 100-580, 101-618, 108-447, and 111-11, and for 
     implementation of other land and water rights settlements, 
     $32,855,000, to remain available until expended.

                 indian guaranteed loan program account

       For the cost of guaranteed loans and insured loans, 
     $8,114,000, of which not to exceed $964,000 is for 
     administrative expenses, as authorized by the Indian 
     Financing Act of 1974, as amended: Provided, That such costs, 
     including the cost of modifying such loans, shall be as 
     defined in section 502 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
     1974: Provided further, That these funds are available to 
     subsidize total loan principal, any part of which is to be 
     guaranteed or insured, not to exceed $85,242,280.

                       administrative provisions

       The Bureau of Indian Affairs may carry out the operation of 
     Indian programs by direct expenditure, contracts, cooperative 
     agreements, compacts, and grants, either directly or in 
     cooperation with States and other organizations.
       Notwithstanding 25 U.S.C. 15, the Bureau of Indian Affairs 
     may contract for services in support of the management, 
     operation, and maintenance of the Power Division of the San 
     Carlos Irrigation Project.
       Appropriations for the Bureau of Indian Affairs (except the 
     Revolving Fund for Loans Liquidating Account, Indian Loan 
     Guaranty and Insurance Fund Liquidating Account, Indian 
     Guaranteed Loan Financing Account, Indian Direct Loan 
     Financing Account, and the Indian Guaranteed Loan Program 
     account) shall be available for expenses of exhibits.
       Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no funds 
     available to the Bureau of Indian Affairs for central office 
     oversight and Executive Direction and Administrative Services 
     (except executive direction and administrative services 
     funding for Tribal Priority Allocations, regional offices, 
     and facilities operations and maintenance) shall be available 
     for contracts, grants, compacts, or cooperative agreements 
     with the Bureau of Indian Affairs under the provisions of the 
     Indian Self-Determination Act or the Tribal Self-Governance 
     Act of 1994 (Public Law 103-413).
       In the event any tribe returns appropriations made 
     available by this Act to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, this 
     action shall not diminish the Federal Government's trust 
     responsibility to that tribe, or the government-to-government 
     relationship between the United States and that tribe, or 
     that tribe's ability to access future appropriations.
       Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no funds 
     available to the Bureau, other than the amounts provided 
     herein for assistance to public schools under 25 U.S.C. 452 
     et seq., shall be available to support the operation of any 
     elementary or secondary school in the State of Alaska.
       Appropriations made available in this or any other Act for 
     schools funded by the Bureau shall be available only to the 
     schools in the Bureau school system as of September 1, 1996. 
     No funds available to the Bureau shall be used to support 
     expanded grades for any school or dormitory beyond the grade 
     structure in place or approved by the Secretary of the 
     Interior at each school in the Bureau school system as of 
     October 1, 1995, except that any school or school program 
     that was closed and removed from the Bureau school system 
     between 1951 and 1972, and its respective tribe's 
     relationship with the Federal Government was terminated, 
     shall be reinstated to the Bureau system and supported at a 
     level based on its grade structure and average student 
     enrollment for the 2009-2010, 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 school 
     years. Funds made available under this Act may not be used to 
     establish a charter school at a Bureau-funded school (as that 
     term is defined in section 1141 of the Education Amendments 
     of 1978 (25 U.S.C. 2021)), except that a charter school that 
     is in existence on the date of the enactment of this Act and 
     that has operated at a Bureau-funded school before September 
     1, 1999, may continue to operate during that period, but only 
     if the charter school pays to the Bureau a pro rata share of 
     funds to reimburse the Bureau for the use of the real and 
     personal property (including buses and vans), the funds of 
     the charter school are kept separate and apart from Bureau 
     funds, and the Bureau does not assume any obligation for 
     charter school programs of the State in which the school is 
     located if the charter school loses such funding. Employees 
     of Bureau-funded schools sharing a campus with a charter 
     school and performing functions related to the charter 
     school's operation and employees of a charter school shall 
     not be treated as Federal employees for purposes of chapter 
     171 of title 28, United States Code.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Gosar

  Mr. GOSAR. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 31, lines 2 through 10, strike ``Funds made 
     available'' and all that follows through ``that period, but'' 
     and insert ``A charter school (as that term is defined in 
     section 1141 of the Education Amendments of 1978 (25 U.S.C. 
     2021)) may operate''.

  Mr. DICKS. Madam Chair, I reserve a point of order.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman's point of order is reserved.
  The gentleman from Arizona is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. GOSAR. Madam Chair, I rise in support of my amendment. As 
currently written, the Department of Interior appropriations bill 
states that education ``funds made available under this Act may not be 
used to establish a charter school at a Bureau-funded school.'' My 
amendment would allow money appropriated under this bill to be used for 
charter schools. Now, the bill grandfathers in charter schools funded 
prior to 1999, but bars no new charter schools. The committee report is 
silent on this.
  As of the 2005 census, children made up 1.4 million of the total of 
American Indian and Alaskan Native populations. They, and their 
parents, deserve educational choices. Charter schools are semi-
independent schools usually within a State's public education system 
that are designed and operated by educators, parents, community 
leaders, educational entrepreneurs, and others. As of 2006, a total of 
40 States and the District of Columbia have passed charter school laws 
allowing this type of school to be part of their system. I see no 
reason to deny this opportunity to American Indians.
  I believe administrators of such schools may worry about 
administrative issues in terms of accounting for students who transfer 
between a charter school and a noncharter school and the moneys that 
are appropriated. This is sometimes referred to as the ``ownership'' of 
the student. But such administrative concerns should not be a basis to 
completely abandon this option. Competent administrators at the BIA, 
the tribes, and the State educational associations can work out the 
transitional issues.
  Further, to the extent someone does not like charter schools, so be 
it. Don't send your child to one. But we in Congress should not be 
picking winners and losers. Charter schools should be an available 
choice to those tribes that want them. If a tribe chooses not to offer 
a charter school approach, that is its decision. But another tribe may 
do so on its own. There's no reason in this appropriation bill to 
foreclose this option. We should not impose our personal likes and 
dislikes on others.
  It is my further belief that allowing the tribes the maximum ability 
to choose the best educational program is consistent with self-
determination. Having the right to decide local school decisions is a 
part of self-determination, and I don't see why we in Congress should 
deny that right. A key part of self-determination is choosing the 
manner in which the tribes educate their children. As far back as 1970, 
President Nixon addressed this issue that was then emerging, and 
stated: ``It is long past time that the Indian policies of the Federal 
Government begin to recognize and build upon the capacities and 
insights of the Indian people. Both as a matter of justice and as a 
matter enlightened social policy, we must begin to act on the basis of 
what the Indians themselves have long been telling us. The time has 
come to break decisively with the past and create the conditions for a 
new era in which the Indian future is determined by Indian acts and 
Indian decisions.''

                              {time}  2240

  Indeed, that is what Congress did when it passed the Indian Self-
Determination and Education Assistance Act of 1975. Allowing the tribes 
to choose a charter school option makes sense from a self-determination 
perspective.
  Finally, according to the Center for Education Reform, there are over 
5,000 charter schools nationwide. There are examples of charter schools 
with spectacular successes and results. I'm sure there are some charter 
schools that have failed in their mission. The point here, however, is 
about choice and allowing the tribes to decide what educational 
opportunities they want to create.
  It is well-known that charter schools are schools of choice. Unlike 
traditional public schools, students may choose to attend charter 
schools, and if those students determine that the school is not serving 
their needs, they may choose to leave. It is true that many charter 
schools typically have longer schooldays, longer school years and 
higher academic and behavioral expectations for their students. For 
those

[[Page H5570]]

concerned about the current public educational system, these trends 
should be encouraged, but let's allow the tribes to make that choice.
  It is Congress' duty to describe and allow such choices as part of 
its oversight and application of our treaties with which American 
Indian tribal relations are governed. I ask for support of this 
amendment and support for Indian self-determination and school choice.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Madam Chair, we don't have any problem with this 
amendment. This is kind of new territory in our bill, but I appreciate 
the gentleman from Arizona's work on this and his interest in providing 
quality education for our Native American brothers and sisters all 
across this country. It's a deep concern that I share also, and I look 
forward to working with him to make sure that this does what is 
intended and that it provides what is necessary for our Indian 
population so that they have the advantages that all of us have. I 
thank the gentleman for offering the amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. Does the gentleman from Washington wish to continue 
to reserve his point of order?
  Mr. DICKS. I withdraw my point of order, but would like to ask a 
question of the gentleman from Arizona.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Washington withdraws his point 
of order.
  Mr. DICKS. I move to strike the requisite number of words.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Washington is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. DICKS. In your amendment, it says:
  funds made available and all that follows through that period--but--
and insert a charter school as that term is defined in section 1141 of 
the Education Amendments of 1978.
  Would you tell us what that definition is, please.
  Mr. GOSAR. We were looking that up, my colleague from Washington. We 
don't have that on the laptop at this point of inquiry.
  Mr. DICKS. So you have no idea what this amendment means?
  Mr. GOSAR. It allows the option for choice of charter schools as 
defined as ``charters schools.''
  Mr. DICKS. How do you know that if you don't know what the language 
is?
  Mr. GOSAR. They were grandfathered in up to 1999, but no provisions 
were given for that detail past 1999.
  Mr. DICKS. I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Arizona (Mr. Gosar).
  The amendment was agreed to.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Notwithstanding any other provision of law, including 
     section 113 of title I of appendix C of Public Law 106-113, 
     if in fiscal year 2003 or 2004 a grantee received indirect 
     and administrative costs pursuant to a distribution formula 
     based on section 5(f) of Public Law 101-301, the Secretary 
     shall continue to distribute indirect and administrative cost 
     funds to such grantee using the section 5(f) distribution 
     formula.

                          Departmental Offices

                        Office of the Secretary

                        departmental operations

       For necessary expenses for management of the Department of 
     the Interior, including the collection and disbursement of 
     royalties, fees, and other mineral revenue proceeds, as 
     authorized by law, $250,151,000 to remain available until 
     September 30, 2013; of which not to exceed $15,000 may be for 
     official reception and representation expenses; and of which 
     up to $1,000,000 shall be available for workers compensation 
     payments and unemployment compensation payments associated 
     with the orderly closure of the United States Bureau of 
     Mines; and of which $12,112,000 for the Office of Valuation 
     Services is to be derived from the Land and Water 
     Conservation Fund and shall remain available until expended; 
     and of which $36,000,000 shall remain available until 
     expended for the purpose of mineral revenue management 
     activities: Provided, That, for fiscal year 2012, up to 
     $400,000 of the payments authorized by the Act of October 20, 
     1976, as amended (31 U.S.C. 6901-6907) may be retained for 
     administrative expenses of the Payments in Lieu of Taxes 
     Program: Provided further, That no payment shall be made 
     pursuant to that Act to otherwise eligible units of local 
     government if the computed amount of the payment is less than 
     $100: Provided further, That notwithstanding any other 
     provision of law, $15,000 under this heading shall be 
     available for refunds of overpayments in connection with 
     certain Indian leases in which the Secretary concurred with 
     the claimed refund due, to pay amounts owed to Indian 
     allottees or tribes, or to correct prior unrecoverable 
     erroneous payments: Provided further, That, notwithstanding 
     the provisions of section 35(b) of the Mineral Leasing Act, 
     as amended (30 U.S.C. 191(b)), the Secretary shall deduct 2 
     percent from the amount payable to each State in fiscal year 
     2012 and deposit the amount deducted to miscellaneous 
     receipts of the Treasury.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Dold

  Mr. DOLD. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 32, line 12, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(reduced by $24,700,000)''.
       Page 65, line 19, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $24,700,000)''.
       Page 65, line 21, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $24,700,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Illinois is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. DOLD. Mr. Chairman, I rise today to restore funding to the Great 
Lakes Restoration Initiative. This important initiative received steep 
cuts in this year's Interior bill. My amendment would simply restore 
half of the funding that was cut.
  This amendment is part of a two-step process to restore funding to 
the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. This amendment transfers funds 
from the Departmental Offices account to the Environmental Programs and 
Management, and it would be accompanied by a subsequent amendment to 
increase this funding to the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.
  I do appreciate the support that the Appropriations Committee has 
shown the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative in the past, and I am 
thankful that it does remain a priority within the Geographic Programs 
account. However, I do believe it is vitally important to restore some 
funding so that we can continue to protect the Great Lakes.
  The Great Lakes are truly a shared national treasure. As the largest 
group of freshwater lakes on Earth, they hold 95 percent of the United 
States surface freshwater and are a source of clean drinking water to 
over 30 million people. From the beautiful beaches and wide open waters 
to the bluffs and dunes, the Great Lakes provide a wide array of 
recreational opportunities and are an important part of the physical 
landscape and cultural heritage of North America. Furthermore, the 
Great Lakes provide transportation for raw materials and finished 
goods, all of which create jobs and contribute to a stronger economy.
  The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is an important part of 
restoring the health and vitality of our Great Lakes. Certainly, in my 
district--the 10th District of Illinois--we want to make sure that the 
Great Lakes are taken care of and protected for future generations. 
However, the ecosystem is showing signs of serious stress, and action 
is now required to restore, rehabilitate and make our Great Lakes 
better. As a scoutmaster, I teach the Boy Scouts the principles of 
leaving areas better than when we found them.
  The Great Lakes Restoration Initiative is an important avenue by 
which to clean up our lakes and restore them to their natural beauty so 
that they can remain the crown jewel for generations to come; but in 
order to preserve our Great Lakes, we need the Great Lakes Restoration 
Initiative to help tackle the challenges facing this natural treasure.
  First, toxic substances are polluting the water, and this initiative 
helps with cleanup and pollution prevention. Also, invasive species are 
causing severe ecological stress on the lakes, and the initiative 
institutes a zero tolerance policy so that species such as the Asian 
carp cannot become fully established in the Great Lakes. Third, we must 
ensure that the pollution does not impair water quality. Finally, the 
Great Lakes Restoration Initiative works to restore degraded wetlands 
and wildlife habitats.
  Earlier this year, I, along with Congressman Lipinski, introduced the 
Great Lakes Water Protection Act, which would protect Lake Michigan and 
the rest of the Great Lakes from wastewater discharges by prohibiting

[[Page H5571]]

publicly owned treatment works from intentionally diverting wastewater 
systems to bypass any portion of the treatment facility.
  This is just one more step my colleagues and I in the Great Lakes 
region are taking to fight for the protection of our lakes. Yet, 
despite all of these concerns, the current recommendation for this 
critical initiative is just over half of what it received in fiscal 
year 2010, and is $49.4 million below the fiscal year 2011 enacted 
level.
  I do appreciate the hard work that the Appropriations Committee has 
been tasked with, and I fully support the committee's efforts to be 
fiscally responsible--to rein in Federal spending and to make sure that 
we are funding our Nation's priorities. That is why my amendment only 
seeks to restore half of the roughly $50 million cut that the Great 
Lakes Restoration Initiative received in this year's Interior bill.
  I do believe that the Great Lakes are at risk, and we must restore 
funding so that the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative can work to 
protect our natural resources for our children and our grandchildren 
for decades to come.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I thank the gentleman for offering his amendment.
  We had to make some tough decisions with this bill. Some of them were 
with the money that we spent in the Geographic Programs. I believe 
every geographic program had reduced funding in this bill. Last year, 
they were funded at $300 million. I think the President requested $350 
million for the Great Lakes geographic program, and we funded it at 
$250 million.
  While I appreciate what the gentleman is trying to do with his 
amendment--and I thank him for offering it--the fact is we just don't 
have that kind of money. The offset of this is $24 million out of the 
Secretary's account, and we earlier took $20 million out of it. I don't 
believe the Secretary is sleeping very well tonight.

                              {time}  2250

  Pretty soon he won't have any money left in his office, as a matter 
of fact. So that is a problem.
  It's not what the gentleman is trying to do. I fully support what the 
gentleman is trying to do. It's the offset and trying to get the $20 
million out of the Secretary's account which causes the problem for me. 
And I would hope that my colleagues would reject this amendment as we 
work on trying to make sure that we, in conference, can do what's 
necessary to fund those programs that do protect the Great Lakes, the 
Puget Sound, the Chesapeake Bay, Long Island Sound, San Francisco Bay, 
some of the other great water bodies in this country.
  I appreciate the gentleman's amendment, but I have to rise in 
opposition to it.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Illinois (Mr. Dold).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. DOLD. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Illinois 
will be postponed.


                  Amendment No. 44 Offered by Mr. Reed

  Mr. REED. Madam Chairwoman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 32, line 12, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(reduced by $8,291,000)''.
       Page 76, line 2, insert after the dollar amount the 
     following: ``(increased by $8,291,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. REED. I offer this amendment with my colleague from Oklahoma (Mr. 
Boren).
  This a bipartisan amendment to this appropriations bill with the 
intent to return funding for the Forest Health Management Account, 
under State and private forestry.
  What we're intending to do with our proposed amendment is to move 
money from the D.C. bureaucracy, and I anticipate there will be a 
concern raised about the offset of the line that we're using to cover 
this increase in the Forest Health Management account from the 
Secretary's account.
  But I firmly do believe that our taxpayer dollars are better spent 
not on the bureaucracy of the Secretary's office here in Washington, 
D.C., but more importantly on the front lines and into the States that 
can benefit from these programs.
  This program that we're trying to take care of with this amendment is 
to restore the funding for the purposes of weeding out invasive species 
which threaten many industries and our environment across the Nation.
  Essentially, invasive species threaten natural habitats, economies, 
and environments in every State and essentially every district that we 
represent. The work done by the Forest Service in education, outreach, 
and on-the-ground action is imperative to the prevention and early 
detection of nonnative invasive species.
  By way of just one example that we deal with in our district, in the 
New York 29th Congressional District is the emerald ash borer beetle 
which can kill an ash tree within 5 years, decimating forests across 
the States and across our district. This pest and other insects have 
caused disruption on local economies and on job producers nationwide. 
Research estimates that we have reviewed at our office indicate that 
replacement and treatment of affected ash trees could total $10 billion 
over the next decade should this pest continue to spread.
  This is just one pest of many that the U.S. Forest Service is seeking 
to maintain and address so that Federal and State funds are not 
diverted from other meaningful initiatives.
  Working with individual States on invasive species control, the 
Forest Health Management programs are part of a collaborative effort to 
protect forest and grasslands where their efforts can be most 
effective--in the field on the front line rather than here behind a 
desk in Washington, D.C.
  The benefit of placing Federal funds into action on the front lines, 
therefore, far outweighs the use of those funds to bloat the Federal 
bureaucracy. And, therefore, I ask my colleagues to support the 
amendment and join in this bipartisan effort, with all due respect to 
the chairman of the appropriations process that is making some very 
difficult decisions in this day and age.
  But I just want to highlight this issue, and I do truly believe that 
through a bipartisan issue we can get money from D.C. into the fields 
and deal with the issue of invasive species that threaten economies and 
industry across the Nation.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I appreciate the gentleman from New York's observation 
that we are working with some very difficult numbers, and he's 
absolutely right. And this is an account, frankly, that I think is 
important. The invasive species and trying to control invasive species 
across this country is of high importance. It's as of high importance 
in Idaho as it is in New York and other places across the country. But 
as the gentleman noted, the concern is the offset.
  While we actually treated this account better than most other 
accounts within this budget, we actually only reduced it by 2\1/2\ 
percent. Some other accounts, EPA's account is down 18 percent, and 
some other things. Most accounts received substantially less funding. 
And where you're taking this money from, as I said on the last 
amendment, the Office of the Secretary is funded in this bill $33\1/2\ 
million below the budget's request. That was before we took out another 
$20 million in an earlier amendment to put it into the Land and Water 
Conservation Fund. So now we're doing $53\1/2\ million. We add this to 
it and we are going to be down $62 million.
  Sometimes these, what appear to be small amounts, add up. If we're 
going to have a Secretary's office that actually functions, we have to 
keep enough resources there so that he can do his job.
  And while I appreciate what the gentleman is trying to do, I 
sympathize

[[Page H5572]]

with what he's trying to do and support the effort of what he's trying 
to do. The fact that the offset affects an account that we have 
substantially reduced already is a problem, so I would oppose the 
amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MORAN. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. I rise to agree with the chairman of the appropriations 
subcommittee just as I did with the last amendment.
  The idea of a bloated bureaucracy, when you've taken $53 million out 
of the Secretary's office, it seems to me, is misplaced where we're 
talking about giving the Office of the Secretary of the Interior far 
more responsibility. And now, at every opportunity, we seem to be 
cutting the resources that are necessary to fulfill those 
responsibilities. Already tonight we've taken $20 million from the 
Office of the Secretary's account.
  So just as I did with the prior amendment, I would also agree with 
the chairman's comments and associate myself with them. So I won't take 
any more of the body's time.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from New York (Mr. Reed).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. REED. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from New York 
will be postponed.


                    Amendment Offered by Mr. Scalise

  Mr. SCALISE. I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 32, line 12, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $420,000)''.
       Page 158, line 25, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $420,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Louisiana is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SCALISE. Madam Chair, the amendment that I bring would take 
$420,000 from the Secretary of the Interior's account and move it into 
the spending reduction account to reduce the Nation's deficit.
  And the reason that we're doing this is that, over the last year 
since the Deepwater Horizon exploded, the administration came out with 
a policy not long after that imposed a moratorium on drilling, a 
moratorium that was found by Federal courts to be outside of the law. 
The administration unfortunately went forward with that moratorium, 
costing thousands of American jobs, hurting America's energy security.
  But even after the lifting of the moratorium, they still maintain 
what they call a permitorium, a refusal to issue permits to explore in 
the Gulf of Mexico for American energy. Not only does it cost our 
Nation tens of thousands of jobs, but it also costs us energy security 
where now we're even more dependent on Middle Eastern countries for 
oil. It's led to higher prices of gasoline at the pumps. It's had 
devastating impacts. Yet there's been no accountability to the 
administration for their policies that have led to this destruction of 
our economic well-being and our energy security as it relates to 
American energy, and especially as it relates to jobs in the Gulf of 
Mexico.

                              {time}  2300

  Now, if you really want to get down to the details of this amendment, 
one of the things we've said for a long time is, a lot of these 
companies, these big employers that have been out there for a long time 
exploring safely for American energy, they want to continue to be able 
to explore for American energy; and they want to go back to work; but 
they haven't been allowed to because of administration policies.
  But what's more absurd is that while the administration has had this 
permitorium, where they won't let people go back to work, they have 
also allowed the clock to continue ticking on the permits and on the 
leases. And you've got a finite amount of time for a lease; you've got 
a 10-year period of time. And if the administration is saying you can't 
properly develop your lease--now it would be one thing if they said, 
we're going to stop the clock while we, as an administration, go 
forward with this radical policy. But all outside experts have said is 
that it has nothing to do with safety, and it is hurting not only 
American energy production but American jobs.
  But what the administration said is they're going to continue to let 
the clock run. It's like if you are playing a basketball game and the 
referee is holding the ball, and the clock's still running. You are 
sitting there saying, look, I just want the ball. I want to be able to 
go out and play by the rules, and the referee is holding the ball while 
the clock continues to run. That's just not fair. And yet the 
administration continues to do this.
  This House, Madam Chair, passed legislation, H.R. 1229. It's called 
the Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act. This legislation that 
we passed here in this House with a bipartisan vote, sent it over to 
the Senate--they still haven't taken action in the Senate--but what 
this legislation did, among other things, is it addressed that problem 
and said, If this administration is going to tell responsible companies 
who are trying to go back to work, who are trying to do the right 
thing--if the administration is going to tell them that they're not 
allowed to play by their own rules, then the clock stops while the 
administration denies them the ability to be permitted.
  So the legislation that we passed addressed this. But the Senate, for 
whatever reason, refuses to take that up; again, costing our country 
thousands of good, high-paying jobs and hurting America's energy 
security, making us more dependent on Middle Eastern oil.
  What we're saying with this amendment is: if this administration 
wants to continue going forward with that radical policy, which a 
majority of the President's own hand-picked scientists in his report 
right after the explosion of the Horizon said is irresponsible to do, 
that would actually reduce safety by denying permits, by having this 
moratorium, and now permitorium, then there has to be accountability. 
We have to hold this administration accountable for their actions.
  And the $420,000 number in this bill that we're setting aside and 
putting into the deficit reduction account was gathered by looking at 
the number of leases that expire at the end of this year. There are 350 
leases that will expire at the end of this year, not through any fault 
of those companies that are out there trying to explore for American 
energy, but because the administration won't let them play by the 
rules.
  So if they're going to be irresponsible with their policies, there 
has to be a price to pay. There has to be accountability that the 
American people say, You're not going to use taxpayer money to deny 
American jobs, to deny American energy, and make our country more 
dependent on Middle Eastern oil and make our country continue to have 
to pay these higher prices at the pump.
  It's their policies that have done it, and it's clear, and everybody 
understands that. People in the Gulf of Mexico recognize that. But 
there has been no accountability by this Congress, and so that's what 
this legislation is intended to do. This amendment will address that 
problem. I urge its adoption.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Madam Chairman, I reluctantly rise in opposition to the 
amendment. I understand what the gentleman is saying. I agree with what 
he's saying. I think the Members have a concern that we are not 
allowing these oil companies to go out after the permits, and we're 
trying to send a message to the Secretary. I understand that, and I 
don't have a problem with sending a message.
  The problem is--and this is a little bit of inside baseball, I guess, 
to talk about it this way--the problem is that under the rules we have, 
you can reduce an account by a certain amount and put that money in the 
budget reserve account which then reduces the allocation that the 
committee has to spend. He takes the $420,000, I think it is, out of 
the Office of the Secretary and reduces our allocation by that much.

[[Page H5573]]

  And as Members have heard that have listened to this debate, there 
are both Republicans and Democrats that are concerned about some of the 
funding allocations in this bill of the various accounts. People want 
to put more money into the Land and Water Conservation Fund. People 
want to put more money, as the last amendment did, into the invasive 
species program, taking care of invasive species. If you go throughout, 
there are Members on both sides of the aisle that believe that various 
accounts are funded at too low of a level. So to take this money and 
put it into the budget reserve account and take it out of the Interior 
appropriations bill means that that is money that could go into another 
account.
  Now, this bill comes to the floor under the budget resolution that 
was passed by the House under the 302(a) and the 302(b) cap, the 
allocation that was given to this committee. It's a tough allocation, 
but we've made those tough decisions, and I don't like to see money to 
send a message to the Secretary, money taken out of his account and put 
into the budget reserve account when there are other accounts within 
the appropriation that could obviously use the funds.
  So if we weren't putting it into the budget reserve account, I don't 
have a problem with the message you are trying to send. I appreciate 
what the gentleman is trying to do, but I would reluctantly have to 
oppose the amendment.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MORAN. I move to strike the last word, Madam Chair.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. I agree with the chairman of the committee again that this 
amendment should be opposed. But I would also mention that I don't know 
how fast the administration could issue drilling permits in the Gulf of 
Mexico that would be fast enough. It's as though Deepwater Horizon 
never happened. When it did happen, people died. The ecology of the 
gulf area was severely and adversely affected. The economy was 
devastated. And we did a complete investigation and found that it was 
largely because the Minerals Management Service was not doing its job, 
that they were issuing permits too quickly without adequate review. 
Sometimes they were just letting permit forms be filled out by the oil 
companies themselves. Sometimes they had already made arrangements to 
go to work for the oil companies.
  But for whatever reason, the fact is that they weren't doing their 
job. They were letting down the American public. They were letting down 
the workers on the drilling rigs. And they certainly contributed to a 
despoiling of the environment, the ecology of the gulf. So this 
Congress, both sides having been severely critical of the Minerals 
Management Service, reorganized it and instructed it to be very 
careful, at least much more careful than they had been in the past in 
terms of issuing drilling permits. That's what they're doing.
  Now, there have been any number of drilling permits issued. They're 
being issued so fast, we don't have an exact number right now; but we 
know a lot have been issued. Again, I doubt that whatever the number 
was that it would be enough for Members that represent areas in the 
gulf to benefit from more drilling activity. But the American public--
this is a democracy, the majority of the American public, whatever 
State they're in--wants the Secretary of the Interior to have a process 
that reflects integrity, that reflects caution, that puts the safety of 
workers and the protection of the environment first.
  So the Secretary is doing his job. We support the job he's doing. We 
know he's issuing a lot of permits, and we agree with the chairman that 
this amendment should be defeated.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SCALISE. Madam Chair, I ask unanimous consent to modify the 
amendment with the modification I have placed at the desk.

                              {time}  2310

  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the modification.
  The Clerk read as follows:
  Modification to amendment offered by Mr. Scalise:

       Strike the second instruction

  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the amendment is modified.
  There was no objection.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there any further debate on the amendment?
  Mr. MORAN. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. Madam Chairwoman, this is a distinction without a 
difference. The money still goes away. The argument that was made by 
the chairman of the committee still stands, as far as I can see. And so 
even though the amendment may be worded a little differently, the 
reality is that the money is lost. And we don't see that this would be 
a constructive amendment anyway, so we would oppose it.
  Mr. SCALISE. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. MORAN. I yield to the gentleman from Louisiana.
  Mr. SCALISE. What the amendment, as it's now revised, would do is it 
would still reduce the $420,000. It wouldn't go to the Spending 
Reduction Account; it would stay within the department, and I think 
that addresses one of the concerns that the chairman had.
  But it would still make it clear that there's going to have to be 
accountability for those people who have played by the rules who are 
being penalized today. There's got to be some accountability and, in 
this case, there would be the ability for us to not only send a message 
but a message attached to a spending reduction in the Secretary's 
department, that he can't just deny people the ability to go back to 
work who are playing by the rules.
  Mr. MORAN. Reclaiming my time, I don't know this business about 
playing by the rules and punishing people who don't. It seems to me 
that the Interior Department is trying to play by the rules that the 
Congress instructed it to play by.
  But, notwithstanding that, when you remove $420,000 from the bill, 
don't know where it goes, I think you lose it. So I don't think that 
this makes a difference.
  What you're saying is that you're not going to put the $420,000 into 
this reduction account. What's the term of it? The Spending Reduction 
Account. That does away with the money.
  But now what you're doing is basically taking it out of the bill, 
letting it fly away to who knows where, but the reality is it no longer 
exists. So it's coming out of the bill. And we don't think that's a 
good idea. We agree with the chairman that this amendment should be 
defeated.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Louisiana (Mr. Scalise), as modified.
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the noes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. SCALISE. Madam Chair, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Louisiana 
will be postponed.


             Amendment Offered by Ms. Jackson Lee of Texas

  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the 
desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

         Page 32, line 12, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $5,500,000)''.
         Page 65, line 19, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $5,000,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentlewoman from Texas is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Madam Chair, we are in some tough times, 
but I believe it's important to have a structure in this government 
that provides oversight over the environment of this country. And 
however one may quarrel with regulations that may seem a little steep, 
the work of the Environmental Protection Agency is important. And as we 
stand here today, this legislation cuts the budget of the Environmental 
Protection Agency by 18 percent, in addition to a 16 percent cut in 
funding for

[[Page H5574]]

FY 2011. Thirty-four percent. This is unacceptable.
  In order to protect the environment without harming industry, we must 
reach a compromise, instead of haphazardly slashing the EPA budget. 
These cuts purposely limit the EPA's ability to ensure that all 
Americans have access to drinking water that does not contain harmful 
pathogens and toxins that expose Americans to serious risk such as 
typhoid, hepatitis, cancer, and organ damage.
  The assault on public health does not stop with the quality of our 
drinking water. This bill also takes drastic steps to weaken the Clean 
Air Act. A rider is attached that will prevent the EPA from 
implementing the Cross State Air Pollution Rule, a regulation that was 
implemented to protect the public from dangerous air pollution and 
prevent up to 34,000 premature deaths, 15,000 heart attacks, and 
400,000 cases of aggregated asthma.
  I've never seen an EPA director work as hard as Administrator Lisa 
Jackson. Although we have had some outstanding administrators, she has 
worked to work with Members across the aisle.
  But these cuts reduce funding for the very programs that keep 
Americans, our constituents safe. And I cannot speak for my colleagues 
on the other side of the aisle, but I cannot afford to have these cuts 
impact the people of Houston and around the Nation.
  Since 1999, Houston has exchanged titles with Los Angeles for the 
poorest air quality in the Nation. And so it is important that we find 
a way to increase the funding for the EPA. And as this bill makes its 
way through the floor, I am continuing to work to do so. And I start 
first with this effort. And I ask my colleagues to support this 
amendment.
  Let me explain to you about the Old Acres Home Citizens Council. This 
is a historic African American community located in Houston, Texas. The 
Council partnered with the University of Texas to conduct a study to 
assess the community's health risk. It was determined that a local 
landfill could be the cause for the community's health-related 
problems, enormous cancer in that area.
  As a result of the study, the Council was awarded a $20,000 grant 
from the EPA Justice Small Grants Program, under the Comprehensive 
Environmental Response Compensation Liability Act, commonly known as 
the Superfund, which, obviously, it was in some years past to conduct 
tests to detect, assess, and evaluate the risk to human health from 
hazardous substances. The goal of these Small Grants Program evaluation 
projects was to investigate whether there were hazardous substances in 
the runoff from the adjacent landfill. This community needed those 
resources. The Council used the EPA grant funds to hire an EPA-approved 
environmental consultant to take soil and water samples from the 
backyards. The results of the sample analysis revealed high 
concentrations of toxic substances, many of which are harmful to 
humans.
  Since 2002, the residents of Old Acres homes have observed water and 
substances seeping from the landfill into their back yards. This runoff 
collects into pools of standing water. Due to poor drainage, these 
standing pools became engorged and then flood, thereby increasing 
exposure of residences to potentially hazardous substances from the 
landfill.
  This was the work of the EPA. It educated a poor community of seniors 
and others about the conditions of their neighborhood. This funding 
that takes away from EPA also takes away from the Clean Water State 
Revolving Fund and, of course, impacts communities like that of the 
Acres Home Community in the 18th Congressional District.

                              {time}  2320

  My friends, we cannot gamble with the safety of the American public, 
the cleanliness of air and water, the quality of the environment for 
future generations. We need to restore this funding, and I have made 
this effort to do so. I will continue to do so.
  Since the debt limit was put in place, we have always paid America's 
bills. We fight today to raise the debt ceiling, but at the same time 
we're cutting away at America's safety and America's need for 
environmental protection. I ask my colleagues to support this amendment 
because it is the right thing to do. It is the right thing to do for 
Acres Home Community in Houston, Texas.
  With that, Madam Chairwoman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Madam Chairwoman, this is the same debate over again. 
We're taking money from the Office of the Secretary, which is down some 
$30-odd million, $33 million, I think it was, from the budget request 
of this year; then we've taken $20 million out of that already to put 
into the Land and Water Conservation Fund. This would take more money 
out of the Office of the Secretary.
  It seems like every time somebody has an amendment that they want to 
offer to fund some program that they believe is important--and 
oftentimes they are important--the savings account that you get it from 
is the Office of the Secretary. Not only in this bill, but in other 
bills. We take it out of administration. That's always the easiest 
thing to do, but the fact is that the Office of the Secretary has taken 
a pretty good hit in this bill both during the markup and here on 
debate on the floor, and so I'm afraid I have to oppose this amendment 
because I think it hits an account that is already substantially lower 
than what was requested.
  I would oppose the amendment.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. SIMPSON. I yield to the gentlewoman from Texas.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. First of all, I didn't thank both you and 
the ranking member for a very tough task, and I think my overall intent 
was the need for increasing the funding in EPA.
  As we make our way through this process, does the gentleman see, in 
the consultation with the other body, any opportunity to restore any of 
these funds to the EPA?
  Mr. SIMPSON. I would have to say I don't know. I don't know what the 
Senate is doing, what their allocation is going to be. They have not 
passed a budget, so they have no 302(b) over there to work with. But 
certainly we realize that the EPA has taken the largest hit within this 
budget. A lot of that was due to the fact that they had the largest 
increases over the last couple of years. But certainly we will be 
looking at all of these accounts when we go into conference with the 
body across the Rotunda trying to come to a compromise that can pass 
both the House and the Senate.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE of Texas. If the gentleman will yield again, I am 
going to continue to work on this issue. I know that we're going to 
take a vote on this. I, as they say, will come back again on the floor, 
because I think this is a very important issue.
  I thank the gentleman for yielding to allow me to again express how 
important it is that the EPA be funded more fully than it has been.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentlewoman from Texas (Ms. Jackson Lee).
  The amendment was rejected.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will read.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                            Insular Affairs

                       assistance to territories

       For expenses necessary for assistance to territories under 
     the jurisdiction of the Department of the Interior, 
     $82,558,000, of which: (1) $73,296,000 shall remain available 
     until expended for territorial assistance, including general 
     technical assistance, maintenance assistance, disaster 
     assistance, insular management controls, coral reef 
     initiative activities, and brown tree snake control and 
     research; grants to the judiciary in American Samoa for 
     compensation and expenses, as authorized by law (48 U.S.C. 
     1661(c)); grants to the Government of American Samoa, in 
     addition to current local revenues, for construction and 
     support of governmental functions; grants to the Government 
     of the Virgin Islands as authorized by law; grants to the 
     Government of Guam, as authorized by law; and grants to the 
     Government of the Northern Mariana Islands as authorized by 
     law (Public Law 94-241; 90 Stat. 272); and (2) $9,262,000 
     shall be available until September 30, 2013 for salaries and 
     expenses of the Office of Insular Affairs: Provided, That all 
     financial transactions of the territorial and local 
     governments herein provided for, including such transactions 
     of all agencies or instrumentalities established or used

[[Page H5575]]

     by such governments, may be audited by the Government 
     Accountability Office, at its discretion, in accordance with 
     chapter 35 of title 31, United States Code: Provided further, 
     That Northern Mariana Islands Covenant grant funding shall be 
     provided according to those terms of the Agreement of the 
     Special Representatives on Future United States Financial 
     Assistance for the Northern Mariana Islands approved by 
     Public Law 104-134: Provided further, That the funds for the 
     program of operations and maintenance improvement are 
     appropriated to institutionalize routine operations and 
     maintenance improvement of capital infrastructure with 
     territorial participation and cost sharing to be determined 
     by the Secretary based on the grantee's commitment to timely 
     maintenance of its capital assets: Provided further, That any 
     appropriation for disaster assistance under this heading in 
     this Act or previous appropriations Acts may be used as non-
     Federal matching funds for the purpose of hazard mitigation 
     grants provided pursuant to section 404 of the Robert T. 
     Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (42 
     U.S.C. 5170c).

                      compact of free association

       For grants and necessary expenses, $3,307,000, to remain 
     available until expended, as provided for in sections 
     221(a)(2) of the Compact of Free Association for the Republic 
     of Palau; and section 221(a)(2) of the Compacts of Free 
     Association for the Government of the Republic of the 
     Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia, as 
     authorized by Public Law 99-658 and Public Law 108-188.

                       Administrative Provisions

                     (including transfer of funds)

       At the request of the Governor of Guam, the Secretary may 
     transfer discretionary funds or mandatory funds provided 
     under section 104(e) of Public Law 108-188 and Public Law 
     104-134, that are allocated for Guam, to the Secretary of 
     Agriculture for the subsidy cost of direct or guaranteed 
     loans, plus not to exceed three percent of the amount of the 
     subsidy transferred for the cost of loan administration, for 
     the purposes authorized by the Rural Electrification Act of 
     1936 and section 306(a)(1) of the Consolidated Farm and Rural 
     Development Act for construction and repair projects in Guam, 
     and such funds shall remain available until expended: 
     Provided, That such costs, including the cost of modifying 
     such loans, shall be as defined in section 502 of the 
     Congressional Budget Act of 1974: Provided further, That such 
     loans or loan guarantees may be made without regard to the 
     population of the area, credit elsewhere requirements, and 
     restrictions on the types of eligible entities under the 
     Rural Electrification Act of 1936 and section 306(a)(1) of 
     the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act: Provided 
     further, That any funds transferred to the Secretary of 
     Agriculture shall be in addition to funds otherwise made 
     available to make or guarantee loans under such authorities.

                        Office of the Solicitor

                         salaries and expenses

       For necessary expenses of the Office of the Solicitor, 
     $64,946,000.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Gosar

  Mr. GOSAR. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the table.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will report the amendment.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Page 36, line 24, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(decreased by $4,367,000)''.
       Page 88, line 9, after the dollar amount, insert 
     ``(increased by $4,367,000)''.

  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Arizona is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. GOSAR. Thank you, Madam Chair.
  As someone who has practiced chair-side dentistry for 25 years, I 
know firsthand the profound value of oral health, particularly for 
children. Oral health care access early in life is shown to be a 
critical aspect of primary preventative care. This is especially true 
in the Native American community, which I am proud to serve as a 
Representative of Arizona, which has 21 federally recognized tribes.
  For this reason, my amendment would transfer $4,367,000 from the 
Office of the Department of the Interior Solicitor General to the 
Indian Health Service. The committee report recommends $4,367,000 less 
than the President's request for dental health within IHS, and while 
the bill does not name dental health specifically, I would like to make 
it clear on this floor tonight that this reallocation of funds is 
explicitly intended to fund dental health programs within IHS at the 
level recommended by the administration.
  The United States Government took on long ago a number of treaty 
obligations to our Native people, and health care was among them. In 
particular, I cannot state strongly enough how imperative it is that 
the Indian tribes have this effort in the area of oral health fully 
funded.
  Believe it or not, the incidence of early childhood caries, or 
commonly understood tooth decay, occurs among the Native American and 
Native Alaskan populations at 300 percent the rate of the United States 
average. This is unacceptable; and, again, as someone who has practiced 
dentistry as long as I have, I can tell you that this epidemic will 
have dire consequences for these children throughout their lives.
  Worse still, the severity of decay is substantially higher in these 
children compared to the population as a whole. Preschool Native 
children average more than five decayed teeth compared to one decayed 
tooth among U.S. preschool children of all races. In many Native 
communities, between 25 and 50 percent of preschool children have such 
extensive tooth decay that they require full mouth restoration under 
general anesthesia, compared to less than 1 percent for non-Native 
children.
  We have an obligation to improve this sad state of affairs, and so I 
offer this amendment and encourage my colleagues on both sides of the 
aisle to support it for the sake of these Native children to whom we 
have an obligation.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. SIMPSON. I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Idaho is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Madam Chairwoman, you're going to hear from the entire 
Dental Caucus tonight. Congressman Gosar from Arizona and myself are 
the two dentists that are in Congress, so it might not surprise you 
that I support the gentleman's amendment. I appreciate his sincere 
efforts to address the obligations, both trust obligations and treaty 
obligations, and moral obligations, that we have with our Indian 
brothers and sisters across this country.
  One of the things I'm proudest of in this bill, as I said in my 
opening statement during general debate, was to be able to carry on the 
work that had been done by Chairman Dicks when he was chairman of the 
committee, Chairman Moran when he was chairman of the committee, and 
now that I'm chairman of the committee, to meet those trust obligations 
that we have with our Indian brothers and sisters across this country.
  One of the areas in this bill, one of the two areas, that actually 
got increased funding was Indian health services because we do have an 
obligation to meet these things. Dental decay is the most prevalent 
disease in the United States; and as the gentleman from Arizona said, 
it's 300 percent more likely in Native Americans than it is in the 
general population. That's unacceptable. We have to do something about 
it. It means that we have to meet the contract obligations that we have 
had.
  There's a saying that's been said around the country that if you live 
in Indian Country, you need to get sick before June, because the 
contract support costs run out about that time. One thing we've made a 
concerted effort to do on a bipartisan basis is try to fund 100 percent 
of the contract support costs for Native Americans. We haven't reached 
that goal yet. I think in this bill we're about at 93 or 94 percent, 
something like that. The contract support in the BIA that does the 
police work and those types of things are fully funded. We are going to 
continue to work to make sure that we meet those obligations that I 
think we all as Americans have.
  I appreciate the amendment offered by the gentleman from Arizona, and 
I truly appreciate his support for our Indian brothers and sisters.
  I yield back the balance of my time.

                              {time}  2330

  Mr. MORAN. Madam Chair, I move to strike the last word.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. MORAN. As I have said publicly and privately to the chairman of 
the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee, I congratulate him for taking 
the initiative and showing the commitment to the Indian Health Service 
by increasing it by $369 million this year. And dental health 
specifically is up by $13.8 million. That's above the existing level 
this year, and this year is above last year. Granted, the need is very 
substantial, and so I am very supportive.

[[Page H5576]]

  The problem is that, with this amendment that adds another $4.3 
million for the express purpose of increasing dental health further, 
it's the offset. The cut is to the solicitor of the Department that 
serves as the chief legal officer, and it's the solicitor that provides 
legal services to Native Americans on behalf of the Department. So 
you're taking the chief legal officer for the Native Americans of this 
country and making a substantial cut to the resources available for 
that position. It's kind of robbing Peter to pay Paul.
  There are very substantial and serious legal issues that need to be 
dealt with on behalf of Indians throughout the country, and there are 
very difficult health issues that certainly need to be addressed. So I 
did not rise in opposition to the amendment, but I do think that taking 
the money from the solicitor is an unfortunate place to be finding a 
cut of $4.3 million.
  Madam Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Arizona (Mr. Gosar).
  The amendment was agreed to.
  Mr. SIMPSON. Madam Chairman, I ask unanimous consent that the 
remainder of the bill through page 56, line 22 be considered as read, 
printed in the Record, and open to amendment at any point.
  The Acting CHAIR. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman 
from Idaho?
  There was no objection.
  The text of that portion of the bill is as follows:

                      Office of Inspector General

                         salaries and expenses

       For necessary expenses of the Office of Inspector General, 
     $48,493,000.

           Office of the Special Trustee for American Indians

                         federal trust programs

                     (including transfer of funds)

       For the operation of trust programs for Indians by direct 
     expenditure, contracts, cooperative agreements, compacts, and 
     grants, $152,319,000, to remain available until expended, of 
     which not to exceed $31,171,000, from this or any other Act, 
     shall be available for historical accounting: Provided, That 
     funds for trust management improvements and litigation 
     support may, as needed, be transferred to or merged with the 
     Bureau of Indian Affairs, ``Operation of Indian Programs'' 
     account; the Office of the Solicitor, ``Salaries and 
     Expenses'' account; and the Office of the Secretary, 
     ``Salaries and Expenses'' account: Provided further, That 
     funds made available through contracts or grants obligated 
     during fiscal year 2012, as authorized by the Indian Self-
     Determination Act of 1975 (25 U.S.C. 450 et seq.), shall 
     remain available until expended by the contractor or grantee: 
     Provided further, That, notwithstanding any other provision 
     of law, the statute of limitations shall not commence to run 
     on any claim, including any claim in litigation pending on 
     the date of the enactment of this Act, concerning losses to 
     or mismanagement of trust funds, until the affected tribe or 
     individual Indian has been furnished with an accounting of 
     such funds from which the beneficiary can determine whether 
     there has been a loss: Provided further, That, 
     notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary 
     shall not be required to provide a quarterly statement of 
     performance for any Indian trust account that has not had 
     activity for at least 18 months and has a balance of $15.00 
     or less: Provided further, That the Secretary shall issue an 
     annual account statement and maintain a record of any such 
     accounts and shall permit the balance in each such account to 
     be withdrawn upon the express written request of the account 
     holder: Provided further, That not to exceed $50,000 is 
     available for the Secretary to make payments to correct 
     administrative errors of either disbursements from or 
     deposits to Individual Indian Money or Tribal accounts after 
     September 30, 2002: Provided further, That erroneous payments 
     that are recovered shall be credited to and remain available 
     in this account for this purpose.

                        Department-wide Programs

                        wildland fire management

                     (including transfers of funds)

       For necessary expenses for fire preparedness, suppression 
     operations, fire science and research, emergency 
     rehabilitation, hazardous fuels reduction, and rural fire 
     assistance by the Department of the Interior, $574,072,000, 
     to remain available until expended, of which not to exceed 
     $6,137,000 shall be for the renovation or construction of 
     fire facilities: Provided, That such funds are also available 
     for repayment of advances to other appropriation accounts 
     from which funds were previously transferred for such 
     purposes: Provided further, That persons hired pursuant to 43 
     U.S.C. 1469 may be furnished subsistence and lodging without 
     cost from funds available from this appropriation: Provided 
     further, That notwithstanding 42 U.S.C. 1856d, sums received 
     by a bureau or office of the Department of the Interior for 
     fire protection rendered pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 1856 et seq., 
     protection of United States property, may be credited to the 
     appropriation from which funds were expended to provide that 
     protection, and are available without fiscal year limitation: 
     Provided further, That using the amounts designated under 
     this title of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior may 
     enter into procurement contracts, grants, or cooperative 
     agreements, for hazardous fuels reduction activities, and for 
     training and monitoring associated with such hazardous fuels 
     reduction activities, on Federal land, or on adjacent non-
     Federal land for activities that benefit resources on Federal 
     land: Provided further, That the costs of implementing any 
     cooperative agreement between the Federal Government and any 
     non-Federal entity may be shared, as mutually agreed on by 
     the affected parties: Provided further, That notwithstanding 
     requirements of the Competition in Contracting Act, the 
     Secretary, for purposes of hazardous fuels reduction 
     activities, may obtain maximum practicable competition among: 
     (1) local private, nonprofit, or cooperative entities; (2) 
     Youth Conservation Corps crews, Public Lands Corps (Public 
     Law 109-154), or related partnerships with State, local, or 
     non-profit youth groups; (3) small or micro-businesses; or 
     (4) other entities that will hire or train locally a 
     significant percentage, defined as 50 percent or more, of the 
     project workforce to complete such contracts: Provided 
     further, That in implementing this section, the Secretary 
     shall develop written guidance to field units to ensure 
     accountability and consistent application of the authorities 
     provided herein: Provided further, That funds appropriated 
     under this heading may be used to reimburse the United States 
     Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries 
     Service for the costs of carrying out their responsibilities 
     under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et 
     seq.) to consult and conference, as required by section 7 of 
     such Act, in connection with wildland fire management 
     activities: Provided further, That the Secretary of the 
     Interior may use wildland fire appropriations to enter into 
     leases of real property with local governments, at or below 
     fair market value, to construct capitalized improvements for 
     fire facilities on such leased properties, including but not 
     limited to fire guard stations, retardant stations, and other 
     initial attack and fire support facilities, and to make 
     advance payments for any such lease or for construction 
     activity associated with the lease: Provided further, That 
     the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of 
     Agriculture may authorize the transfer of funds appropriated 
     for wildland fire management, in an aggregate amount not to 
     exceed $50,000,000, between the Departments when such 
     transfers would facilitate and expedite jointly funded 
     wildland fire management programs and projects: Provided 
     further, That funds provided for wildfire suppression shall 
     be available for support of Federal emergency response 
     actions: Provided further, That funds appropriated under this 
     heading shall be available for assistance to or through the 
     Department of State in connection with forest and rangeland 
     research, technical information, and assistance in foreign 
     countries, and, with the concurrence of the Secretary of 
     State, shall be available to support forestry, wildland fire 
     management, and related natural resource activities outside 
     the United States and its territories and possessions, 
     including technical assistance, education and training, and 
     cooperation with United States and international 
     organizations: Provided further, That, before obligating any 
     of the funds provided herein for wildland fire suppression, 
     the Secretary of the Interior shall obligate all unobligated 
     balances previously made available under this heading that, 
     when appropriated, were designated by Congress as an 
     emergency requirement pursuant to the Concurrent Resolution 
     on the Budget or the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit 
     Control Act of 1985 and notify the Committees on 
     Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the Senate 
     in writing of the imminent need to begin obligating funds 
     provided herein for wildland fire suppression: Provided 
     further, That the Secretary of the Interior may transfer not 
     more than $50,000,000 of the funds provided herein to the 
     Secretary of Agriculture if the Secretaries determine that 
     the transfer will enhance the efficiency or effectiveness of 
     Federal wildland fire suppression activities.

                flame wildfire suppression reserve fund

                     (including transfer of funds)

       For necessary expenses for large fire suppression 
     operations of the Department of the Interior and as a reserve 
     fund for suppression and Federal emergency response 
     activities, $92,000,000, to remain available until expended: 
     Provided, That such amounts are available only for transfer 
     to the ``Wildland Fire Management'' account and only 
     following a declaration by the Secretary that either (1) a 
     wildland fire suppression event meets certain previously-
     established risk-based written criteria for significant 
     complexity, severity, or threat posed by the fire or (2) 
     funds in the ``Wildland Fire Management'' account will be 
     exhausted within 30 days.

                    central hazardous materials fund

       For necessary expenses of the Department of the Interior 
     and any of its component offices and bureaus for the response 
     action, including associated activities, performed pursuant 
     to the Comprehensive Environmental

[[Page H5577]]

     Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, as amended (42 
     U.S.C. 9601 et seq.), $10,149,000, to remain available until 
     expended.

           natural resource damage assessment and restoration

                natural resource damage assessment fund

       To conduct natural resource damage assessment and 
     restoration activities by the Department of the Interior 
     necessary to carry out the provisions of the Comprehensive 
     Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, as 
     amended (42 U.S.C. 9601 et seq.), the Federal Water Pollution 
     Control Act, as amended (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.), the Oil 
     Pollution Act of 1990 (33 U.S.C. 2701 et seq.), and Public 
     Law 101-337, as amended (16 U.S.C. 19jj et seq.), $5,763,000, 
     to remain available until expended.

                          working capital fund

       For the acquisition of a departmental financial and 
     business management system, information technology 
     improvements of general benefit to the Department, and 
     consolidation of facilities and operations throughout the 
     Department, $57,019,000, to remain available until expended: 
     Provided, That none of the funds appropriated in this Act or 
     any other Act may be used to establish reserves in the 
     Working Capital Fund account other than for accrued annual 
     leave and depreciation of equipment without prior approval of 
     the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations: Provided 
     further, That the Secretary may assess reasonable charges to 
     State, local and tribal government employees for training 
     services provided by the National Indian Program Training 
     Center, other than training related to Public Law 93-638: 
     Provided further, That the Secretary may lease or otherwise 
     provide space and related facilities, equipment or 
     professional services of the National Indian Program Training 
     Center to State, local and tribal government employees or 
     persons or organizations engaged in cultural, educational, or 
     recreational activities (as defined in section 3306(a) of 
     title 40, United States Code) at the prevailing rate for 
     similar space, facilities, equipment, or services in the 
     vicinity of the National Indian Program Training Center: 
     Provided further, That all funds received pursuant to the two 
     preceding provisos shall be credited to this account, shall 
     be available until expended, and shall be used by the 
     Secretary for necessary expenses of the National Indian 
     Program Training Center.

                        administrative provision

       There is hereby authorized for acquisition from available 
     resources within the Working Capital Fund, 15 aircraft, 10 of 
     which shall be for replacement and which may be obtained by 
     donation, purchase or through available excess surplus 
     property: Provided, That existing aircraft being replaced may 
     be sold, with proceeds derived or trade-in value used to 
     offset the purchase price for the replacement aircraft.

             General Provisions, Department of the Interior

                     (including transfers of funds)

               emergency transfer authority--intra-bureau

       Sec. 101.  Appropriations made in this title shall be 
     available for expenditure or transfer (within each bureau or 
     office), with the approval of the Secretary, for the 
     emergency reconstruction, replacement, or repair of aircraft, 
     buildings, utilities, or other facilities or equipment 
     damaged or destroyed by fire, flood, storm, or other 
     unavoidable causes: Provided, That no funds shall be made 
     available under this authority until funds specifically made 
     available to the Department of the Interior for emergencies 
     shall have been exhausted: Provided further, That all funds 
     used pursuant to this section must be replenished by a 
     supplemental appropriation which must be requested as 
     promptly as possible.

             emergency transfer authority--department-wide

       Sec. 102.  The Secretary may authorize the expenditure or 
     transfer of any no year appropriation in this title, in 
     addition to the amounts included in the budget programs of 
     the several agencies, for the suppression or emergency 
     prevention of wildland fires on or threatening lands under 
     the jurisdiction of the Department of the Interior; for the 
     emergency rehabilitation of burned-over lands under its 
     jurisdiction; for emergency actions related to potential or 
     actual earthquakes, floods, volcanoes, storms, or other 
     unavoidable causes; for contingency planning subsequent to 
     actual oil spills; for response and natural resource damage 
     assessment activities related to actual oil spills or 
     releases of hazardous substances into the environment; for 
     the prevention, suppression, and control of actual or 
     potential grasshopper and Mormon cricket outbreaks on lands 
     under the jurisdiction of the Secretary, pursuant to the 
     authority in section 417(b) of Public Law 106-224 (7 U.S.C. 
     7717(b)); for emergency reclamation projects under section 
     410 of Public Law 95-87; and shall transfer, from any no year 
     funds available to the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation 
     and Enforcement, such funds as may be necessary to permit 
     assumption of regulatory authority in the event a primacy 
     State is not carrying out the regulatory provisions of the 
     Surface Mining Act: Provided, That appropriations made in 
     this title for wildland fire operations shall be available 
     for the payment of obligations incurred during the preceding 
     fiscal year, and for reimbursement to other Federal agencies 
     for destruction of vehicles, aircraft, or other equipment in 
     connection with their use for wildland fire operations, such 
     reimbursement to be credited to appropriations currently 
     available at the time of receipt thereof: Provided further, 
     That for wildland fire operations, no funds shall be made 
     available under this authority until the Secretary determines 
     that funds appropriated for ``wildland fire operations'' and 
     ``FLAME Wildfire Suppression Reserve Fund'' shall be 
     exhausted within 30 days: Provided further, That all funds 
     used pursuant to this section must be replenished by a 
     supplemental appropriation which must be requested as 
     promptly as possible: Provided further, That such 
     replenishment funds shall be used to reimburse, on a pro rata 
     basis, accounts from which emergency funds were transferred.

                        authorized use of funds

       Sec. 103.  Appropriations made to the Department of the 
     Interior in this title shall be available for services as 
     authorized by section 3109 of title 5, United States Code, 
     when authorized by the Secretary, in total amount not to 
     exceed $500,000; purchase and replacement of motor vehicles, 
     including specially equipped law enforcement vehicles; hire, 
     maintenance, and operation of aircraft; hire of passenger 
     motor vehicles; purchase of reprints; payment for telephone 
     service in private residences in the field, when authorized 
     under regulations approved by the Secretary; and the payment 
     of dues, when authorized by the Secretary, for library 
     membership in societies or associations which issue 
     publications to members only or at a price to members lower 
     than to subscribers who are not members.

            authorized use of funds, indian trust management

       Sec. 104.  Appropriations made in this Act under the 
     headings Bureau of Indian Affairs and Office of the Special 
     Trustee for American Indians and any unobligated balances 
     from prior appropriations Acts made under the same headings 
     shall be available for expenditure or transfer for Indian 
     trust management and reform activities. Total funding for 
     historical accounting activities shall not exceed amounts 
     specifically designated in this Act for such purpose.

           redistribution of funds, bureau of indian affairs

       Sec. 105.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the 
     Secretary of the Interior is authorized to redistribute any 
     Tribal Priority Allocation funds, including tribal base 
     funds, to alleviate tribal funding inequities by transferring 
     funds to address identified, unmet needs, dual enrollment, 
     overlapping service areas or inaccurate distribution 
     methodologies. No tribe shall receive a reduction in Tribal 
     Priority Allocation funds of more than 10 percent in fiscal 
     year 2012. Under circumstances of dual enrollment, 
     overlapping service areas or inaccurate distribution 
     methodologies, the 10 percent limitation does not apply.

                      twin cities research center

       Sec. 106.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, in 
     conveying the Twin Cities Research Center under the authority 
     provided by Public Law 104-134, the Secretary may accept and 
     retain land and other forms of reimbursement: Provided, That 
     the Secretary may retain and use any such reimbursement until 
     expended and without further appropriation: (1) for the 
     benefit of the National Wildlife Refuge System within the 
     State of Minnesota; and (2) for all activities authorized by 
     section 701 of Public Law 100-696 (16 U.S.C. 460zz).

                            payment of fees

       Sec. 107.  The Secretary of the Interior may use 
     discretionary funds to pay private attorney fees and costs 
     for employees and former employees of the Department of the 
     Interior reasonably incurred in connection with Cobell v. 
     Salazar to the extent that such fees and costs are not paid 
     by the Department of Justice or by private insurance. In no 
     case shall the Secretary make payments under this section 
     that would result in payment of hourly fees in excess of the 
     highest hourly rate approved by the District Court for the 
     District of Columbia for counsel in Cobell v. Salazar.

                    everglades ecosystem restoration

       Sec. 108.  This and any subsequent fiscal year, the 
     National Park Service is authorized to implement 
     modifications to the Tamiami Trail as described in, and in 
     accordance with, the preferred alternative identified in the 
     final environmental impact statement noticed in the Federal 
     Register on December 14, 2010, (75 Fed. Reg. 77896), relating 
     to restoration efforts of the Everglades ecosystem.

                 ellis, governors, and liberty islands

       Sec. 109.  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the 
     Secretary of the Interior is authorized to acquire lands, 
     waters, or interests therein including the use of all or part 
     of any pier, dock, or landing within the State of New York 
     and the State of New Jersey, for the purpose of operating and 
     maintaining facilities in the support of transportation and 
     accommodation of visitors to Ellis, Governors, and Liberty 
     Islands, and of other program and administrative activities, 
     by donation or with appropriated funds, including franchise 
     fees (and other monetary consideration), or by exchange; and 
     the Secretary is authorized to negotiate and enter into 
     leases, subleases, concession contracts or other agreements 
     for the use of such facilities on such terms and conditions 
     as the Secretary may determine reasonable.

[[Page H5578]]

                         indian probate judges

       Sec. 110.  In fiscal year 2012 and each fiscal year 
     thereafter, for the purpose of adjudicating Indian probate 
     cases in the Department of the Interior, the hearing 
     requirements of chapter 10 of title 25, United States Code, 
     are deemed satisfied by a proceeding conducted by an Indian 
     probate judge, appointed by the Secretary without regard to 
     the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing the 
     appointments in the competitive service, for such period of 
     time as the Secretary determines necessary: Provided, That 
     the basic pay of an Indian probate judge so appointed may be 
     fixed by the Secretary without regard to the provisions of 
     chapter 51, and subchapter III of chapter 53 of title 5, 
     United States Code, governing the classification and pay of 
     General Schedule employees, except that no such Indian 
     probate judge may be paid at a level which exceeds the 
     maximum rate payable for the highest grade of the General 
     Schedule, including locality pay.

     bureau of ocean energy management, regulation and enforcement 
                             reorganization

       Sec. 111.  The Secretary of the Interior, in order to 
     implement a reorganization of the Bureau of Ocean Energy 
     Management, Regulation and Enforcement, may establish 
     accounts and transfer funds among and between the offices and 
     bureaus affected by the reorganization only in conformance 
     with the reprogramming guidelines described in the report 
     accompanying this Act.

                authorized use of indian education funds

       Sec. 112.  Beginning July 1, 2008, any funds (including 
     investments and interest earned, except for construction 
     funds) held by a Public Law 100-297 grant or a Public Law 93-
     638 contract school shall, upon retrocession to or re-
     assumption by the Bureau of Indian Education, remain 
     available to the Bureau of Indian Education for a period of 5 
     years from the date of retrocession or re-assumption for the 
     benefit of the programs approved for the school on October 1, 
     1995.

  contracts and agreements for wild horse and burro holding facilities

       Sec. 113. (a) Notwithstanding any other provision of this 
     Act, the Secretary of the Interior may enter into multiyear 
     cooperative agreements with nonprofit organizations and other 
     appropriate entities, and may enter into multiyear contracts 
     in accordance with the provisions of section 304B of the 
     Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 (41 
     U.S.C. 254c) (except that the 5 year term restriction in 
     subsection (d) shall not apply), for the long-term care and 
     maintenance of excess wild free roaming horses and burros by 
     such organizations or entities on private land. Such 
     cooperative agreements and contracts may not exceed 10 years, 
     subject to renewal at the discretion of the Secretary.
       (b) During fiscal year 2012 and subsequent fiscal years, in 
     carrying out work involving cooperation with any State or 
     political subdivision thereof, the Bureau of Land Management 
     may record obligations against accounts receivable from any 
     such entities.

              bureau of indian education operated schools

       Sec. 114. (a)(1) Nothwithstanding section 586(c) of title 
     40, United States Code, the head of a Bureau-operated school 
     is authorized to enter into agreements with public and 
     private persons and entities that provide for such persons 
     and entities to rent or lease the land or facilities of the 
     school in exchange for a consideration (in the form of funds) 
     that benefits the school, as determined by the head of the 
     school when such rent or lease does not interfere with school 
     operations.
       (2) Funds received under paragraph (1) shall be retained by 
     the school and used for school purposes otherwise authorized 
     by law. Any funds received under paragraph (1) are hereby 
     made available until expended for such purposes, 
     notwithstanding section 3302 of title 31, United States Code.
       (3) Nothing in this section shall be construed to allow for 
     the diminishment of, or otherwise affect, the appropriation 
     of funds to the budget accounts for the operation and 
     maintenance of Bureau-operated schools. No funds shall be 
     withheld from the distribution to the budget of any Bureau-
     operated school due to the receipt by the school of a benefit 
     in accordance with this section.
       (b) Notwithstanding any provision of title 5, United States 
     Code, or any regulation promulgated under such title, 
     education personnel who are under the direction and 
     supervision of the Secretary of the Interior may participate 
     in a fundraising activity for the benefit of a Bureau-
     operated school in an official capacity as part of their 
     official duties. When participating in such an official 
     capacity, the employee may use the employee's official title, 
     position, and authority. Nothing in this subsection shall be 
     construed to authorize participation in political activity 
     (as such term is used in section 7324 of title 5, United 
     States Code) otherwise prohibited by law.
       (c) The Secretary of the Interior shall promulgate 
     regulations to carry out this section not later than 12 
     months after the date of the enactment of this Act. Such 
     regulations shall include--
       (1) provisions for the establishment and administration of 
     mechanisms for the acceptance of consideration for the use 
     and benefit of a school in accordance with this section 
     (including, in appropriate cases, the establishment and 
     administration of trust funds);
       (2) accountability standards to ensure ethical conduct; and
       (3) provisions for monitoring the amount and terms of 
     consideration received, the manner in which the consideration 
     is used, and any results achieved by such use.
       (d) Provisions of this section shall apply to fiscal year 
     2012 and subsequent fiscal years.

                       mass marking of salmonids

       Sec. 115.  The United States Fish and Wildlife Service 
     shall, in carrying out its responsibilities to protect 
     threatened and endangered species of salmon, implement a 
     system of mass marking of salmonid stocks, intended for 
     harvest, that are released from federally operated or 
     federally financed hatcheries including but not limited to 
     fish releases of coho, chinook, and steelhead species. Marked 
     fish must have a visible mark that can be readily identified 
     by commercial and recreational fishers.

  Mr. SIMPSON. Madam Chairman, I move that the Committee do now rise.
  The motion was agreed to.
  Accordingly, the Committee rose; and the Speaker pro tempore (Mr. 
Gosar) having assumed the chair, Ms. Foxx, Acting Chair of the 
Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, reported that 
that Committee, having had under consideration the bill (H.R. 2584) 
making appropriations for the Department of the Interior, environment, 
and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2012, and 
for other purposes, had come to no resolution thereon.

                          ____________________