H.R.5389 - National Biological Resources Research and Development Act102nd Congress (1991-1992)
|Sponsor:||Rep. Scheuer, James H. [D-NY-8] (Introduced 06/11/1992)|
|Committees:||House - Merchant Marine and Fisheries; Science, Space and Technology|
|Latest Action:||House - 06/26/1992 Executive Comment Requested from USDA, Commerce, DOD, DOE, Interior, NSF, Smithsonian. (All Actions)|
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Text: H.R.5389 — 102nd Congress (1991-1992)All Information (Except Text)
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Introduced in House
HR 5389 IH 102d CONGRESS 2d Session H. R. 5389 To establish a National Center for Biological Resources (Research and Development) to facilitate the collection, synthesis, and dissemination of information relating to the sustainable use, research, development, and conservation of biological resources. IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES June 11, 1992 Mr. SCHEUER (for himself, Mrs. MORELLA, Mr. BROWN, Mr. WOLPE, Mr. BEILENSON, Ms. HORN, Mr. BLAZ, Mr. GEJDENSON, Mr. MCMILLEN of Maryland, Mr. MCDERMOTT, Mr. SIKORSKI, Mr. HUGHES, Mr. HERTEL, Mr. KOSTMAYER, and Mr. NOWAK) introduced the following bill; which was referred jointly to the Committees on Merchant Marine and Fisheries and Science, Space, and Technology A BILL To establish a National Center for Biological Resources (Research and Development) to facilitate the collection, synthesis, and dissemination of information relating to the sustainable use, research, development, and conservation of biological resources. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the `National Biological Resources Research and Development Act'. SEC. 2. FINDINGS. The Congress finds that-- (1) existing information regarding the abundance and distribution of biological resources is inadequate and often inaccessible; (2) the loss of biological resources may have serious consequences for human welfare as raw material for research and agricultural, medicinal, and industrial development are irretrievably lost; (3) existing laws and programs relevant to the loss of indigenous biological resources in the United States are largely uncoordinated and inadequate, and sometimes result in duplication of efforts, conflicts in goals, and gaps in geographic and taxonomic coverage; and, (4) increased research in biological resources is needed to provide adequate knowledge to maintain and to ensure the sustainable use of natural resources. SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS. For purposes of this Act-- (1) the term `biological resources' means the full range of variety and variability within and among living organisms (including both terrestrial and aquatic) and the ecological complexes in which they occur, and encompasses ecosystem or community diversity, species diversity, and genetic diversity; (2) the term `genetic diversity' means the differences in genetic composition within and among populations of a given species; (3) the term `species diversity' means the richness and variety of indigenous species in a particular location of the world; (4) the term `community diversity' means the variety between different integrated assemblages of species inhabiting different locales; and (5) the term `United States' means all of the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and any other commonwealth, territory, possession, or area of legal or economic jurisdiction of the United States. SEC. 4. PURPOSES. It is the purpose of this Act-- (1) to undertake a nationally coordinated effort to survey, collect, inventory, synthesize, and disseminate adequate data and information for-- (A) the understanding of the full range of biological resources; (B) assessing the rate and scale of change in biological resources; (C) developing tests and making available cost effective methodologies for scientific and economic inventories of biological resources; and (D) evaluating the potential economic implications of the sustainable use of biological resources. (2) to support basic and applied research necessary for a full understanding of the nation's biological resources; and (3) to promote better understanding of the importance of biological resources and foster actions that prevent biological impoverishment and sustainably preserve biological resources. SEC. 5. NATIONAL CENTER FOR BIOLOGICAL RESOURCES (RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT). (a) ESTABLISHMENT AND PURPOSE- There is established within the Smithsonian Institution, in cooperation with the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Science Foundation, a National Center for Biological Resource (Research and Development) (the Center), whose purpose shall be to set research priorities, to provide leadership and coordination for the understanding and promotion of knowledge of the biota within the United States with respect to its composition, systematics, distribution, status, biological properties, ecological relationships (including environmental significance), and economic value, and the effect of human activities on the biota, and to make this knowledge accessible to the people of the United States and others working on research and development in biological resources throughout the world. The Center shall be administered by a Director. (b) FUNCTIONS- The functions of the Center shall be-- (1) to summarize and enhance the knowledge of the distribution, status, and characteristics of the biota in a manner that can be used in the sustainable development of natural products; (2) to prepare, with the assistance of agencies and other sources, lists and, where appropriate, maps of-- (A) indigenous biotic communities, species, and populations that appear to be in significant decline or in imminent danger of loss of viability; (B) areas of outstanding indigenous biotic importance; and, (C) factors, including the legal status and applicable laws, affecting the potential development of such communities, species, and populations; (3) to publish information, such as floral and faunal treatises, resource inventories, vegetation maps, atlases, and guides for practical use of biological information, and especially publications that synthesize information relevant to national goals of understanding biological resource use and its sustainable development; (4) to identify taxonomic groups, ecological communities, and geographical areas in need of study, and to develop a strategic plan for, initiate, and provide financial support toward an ongoing survey of the biota; (5) to provide for the conducting of research, through grants, contracts, or otherwise, by Federal, State, and private agencies, institutions, organizations, and individuals; (6) to make recommendations to Federal agencies and others on the technical management of data collection, storage, and retrieval; (7) to provide training and technical assistance to Federal agencies and others regarding collection and interpretation of biological data; (8) to raise additional funds through grants and contracts as necessary to support the activities of the Center; and (9) to research and explore the development of natural products. (c) STRUCTURE AND MEMBERSHIP- (1) BOARD OF TRUSTEES- There is established in the Smithsonian Institution a Board of Trustees to be known as the Trustees of the National Center for Biological Resources (Research and Development), which shall provide advice and assistance to the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution on all matters relating to the policies, administration, and operation of the Center. (2) MEMBERSHIP- (A) The Board of Trustees shall consist of 19 members, including-- (i) one representative of the Smithsonian Institution; (ii) one representative of the Fish and Wildlife Service; (iii) one representative of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; (iv) one representative of the National Park Service; (v) one representative of the Department of Energy; (vi) one representative of the National Science Foundation; (vii) one representative of the Agricultural Research Service; (viii) one representative of the Environmental Protection Agency; (ix) one representative of the Forest Service; (x) one representative of the Bureau of Land Management; (xi) one representative of the Department of Defense; (xii) one representative of State biological surveys; (xiii) one representative of private organizations that maintain large data bases oriented toward biological resource inventories; (xiv) two scientists from nonprofit research institutions or universities; and (xv) two representatives from institutions with collections of biological specimens; and (xvi) two representatives from companies that develop products from biotic resources. (B) Members listed under clauses (xii) through (xv) of subparagraph (A) shall be appointed by the President from a list of nominees recommended by the National Academy of Sciences. (3) TERMS- Members of the Board of Trustees shall serve for terms of five years, and may serve more than one term. (4) COMPENSATION OF MEMBERS- (A) NONGOVERNMENT MEMBERS- Each member of the advisory board that is not otherwise in the service of the Federal Government shall, to the extent provided for in advance in appropriations Acts, be paid actual travel expenses and per diem in lieu of subsistence expenses in accordance with section 5703 of title 5, United States Code, when such member is away from the member's usual place of residence. (B) GOVERNMENT MEMBERS- Each member of the advisory board that is otherwise in the service of the Federal Government shall serve without compensation in addition to that received for such other service, but while engaged in the work of the Board of Trustees, such member shall, to the extent provided for in advance in appropriations Acts, be paid actual travel expenses, and per diem in lieu of subsistence expenses in accordance with subchapter I of chapter 57 of title 5, United States Code, when away from the member's usual place of residence. (5) CHAIRMAN- The members of the Board of Trustees shall select one member to serve as Chairman. (6) FUNDING ARRANGEMENTS- The Director of the Center shall make appropriate arrangements for necessary administrative and clerical support of the Board of Trustees, in consultation with the Chairman of the Board of Trustees. (d) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS- There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this section $10,000,000 for fiscal year 1993, $10,000,000 for fiscal year 1994, and $10,000,000 for fiscal year 1995, to remain available until expended as specified in appropriations Acts.