Text: H.R.2579 — 104th Congress (1995-1996)All Information (Except Text)

Text available as:

Shown Here:
Public Law No: 104-288 (10/11/1996)

 
[104th Congress Public Law 288]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]


<DOC>
[DOCID: f:publ288.104]


[[Page 3401]]

         UNITED STATES NATIONAL TOURISM ORGANIZATION ACT OF 1996

[[Page 110 STAT. 3402]]

Public Law 104-288
104th Congress

                                 An Act


 
    To establish the National Tourism Board and the National Tourism 
 Organization to promote international travel and tourism to the United 
             States. <<NOTE: Oct. 11, 1996 -  [H.R. 2579]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: United States 
National Tourism Organization Act of 1996.>> 

SECTION 1. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141 note.>>  SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``United States National Tourism 
Organization Act of 1996''.

SEC. 2. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141.>>  FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.

    (a) Findings.--The Congress finds that--
            (1) The travel and tourism industry is the second largest 
        service and retail industry in the United States, and travel and 
        tourism services ranked as the largest United States export in 
        1995, generating an $18.6 billion surplus for the United States.
            (2) Domestic and international travel and tourism 
        expenditures totaled $433 billion in 1995, $415 billion spent 
        directly within the United States and an additional $18 billion 
        spent by international travelers on United States carriers 
        traveling to the United States.
            (3) Direct travel and tourism receipts make up 6 percent of 
        the United States gross domestic product.
            (4) In 1994, the travel and tourism industry was the 
        nation's second largest employer, directly responsible for 6.3 
        million jobs and indirectly responsible for another 8 million 
        jobs.
            (5) Employment in major sectors of the travel and tourism 
        industry is expected to increase 35 percent by the year 2005.
            (6) 99.7 percent of travel businesses are defined by the 
        Federal government as small businesses.
            (7) The White House Conference on Travel and Tourism in 1995 
        recommended the establishment of a new national tourism 
        organization to represent and promote international travel and 
        tourism to the United States.
            (8) Recent Federal tourism promotion efforts have failed to 
        stem the rapid erosion of our country's international tourism 
        market share.
            (9) In fact, the United States' share of worldwide travel 
        receipts dropped from a peak of 19.3 percent in 1992 down to 
        15.7 percent by the end of 1994.
            (10) The United States has now fallen to only the third 
        leading international destination.

[[Page 110 STAT. 3403]]

            (11) Because the United States Travel and Tourism 
        Administration had insufficient resources and effectiveness to 
        reverse the recent decline in the United States' share of 
        international travel and tourism, Congress discontinued USTTA's 
        funding.
            (12) Promotion of the United States' international travel 
        and tourism interests can be more effectively managed by a 
        private organization at less cost to the taxpayers.

    (b) Purpose.--The purpose of this Act is to create a privately 
managed, federally sanctioned United States National Tourism 
Organization to represent and promote United States international travel 
and tourism.

SEC. 3. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141a.>>  UNITED STATES NATIONAL TOURISM 
            ORGANIZATION.

    (a) Establishment.--There is established the United States National 
Tourism Organization which shall be a private not-for-profit 
organization.
    (b) Organization Not a Federal Agency.--The Organization shall (1) 
not be considered a Federal agency, (2) have employees appointed without 
regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing 
appointments in the competitive service, and paid without regard to the 
provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of that title 
relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, and (3) not 
be subject to the Federal Advisory Committee Act or any other Federal 
law governing the operation of Federal agencies.
    (c) IRS Status.--The Organization shall be presumed to have the 
status of an organization described in section 501(c)(6) of the Internal 
Revenue Code of 1986 until such time as the Secretary of the Treasury 
determines that the Organization does not meet the requirements of such 
section.
    (d) Purpose of the Organization.--The Organization shall--
            (1) seek and work for an increase in the share of the United 
        States in the global tourism market;
            (2) work in conjunction with Federal, State, and local 
        agencies to develop and implement a coordinated United States 
        travel and tourism policy;
            (3) advise the President, the Congress, and the domestic 
        travel and tourism industry on the implementation of the 
        national travel and tourism strategy and on other matters 
        affecting travel and tourism;
            (4) operate travel and tourism promotion programs outside 
        the United States in partnership with the travel and tourism 
        industry in the United States;
            (5) establish a travel and tourism data bank to gather and 
        disseminate travel and tourism market data;
            (6) conduct market research necessary for effective 
        promotion of the travel and tourism market; and
            (7) promote United States travel and tourism, including 
        international trade shows and conferences.

    (e) Powers of the Organization.--The Organization--
            (1) shall have perpetual succession;
            (2) shall represent the United States travel and tourism 
        industry in its relations with international tourism agencies;
            (3) may sue and be sued, make contracts, and acquire, hold, 
        and dispose of real and personal property, as may be necessary 
        for its corporate purposes;

[[Page 110 STAT. 3404]]

            (4) may provide financial assistance to any organization or 
        association in furtherance of the purpose of the corporation;
            (5) may adopt and alter a corporate seal;
            (6) may establish and maintain offices for the conduct of 
        the affairs of the Organization; and
            (7) may conduct any and all acts necessary and proper to 
        carry out the purposes of this Act.

    (f) Funding.--
            (1) Furtherance of Act.--The Organization may accept gifts, 
        legacies, devises, contributions, and payments in furtherance of 
        the purposes of this Act.
            (2) Expenses.--The Organization may also accept such gifts, 
        legacies, devises, contributions, and payments on behalf of the 
        National Tourism Organization Board to cover the expenses of the 
        Board.

    (g) Political Activities Prohibited.--The Organization shall not 
engage in any activities designed in part or in whole to promote a 
political party or the candidacy of any person seeking or holding 
political office.

SEC. 4. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141b.>>  UNITED STATES NATIONAL TOURISM 
            ORGANIZATION BOARD.

    (a) Establishment.--There is established the United States National 
Tourism Organization Board for the purposes of governing and supervising 
the activities of the Organization.
    (b) Members.--The Board shall be self perpetuating and the initial 
members of the Board shall be appointed or elected as follows:
            (1) The Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade 
        of the Department of Commerce, who will serve as a member ex 
        officio;
            (2) 5 State Travel Directors elected by the National Council 
        of State Travel Directors;
            (3) 5 members elected by the International Association of 
        Convention and Visitors Bureaus;
            (4) 3 members elected by the Air Transport Association;
            (5) 1 member elected by the National Association of 
        Recreational Vehicle Parks and Campgrounds, 1 member elected by 
        the Recreation Vehicle Industry Association;
            (6) 2 members elected by the International Association of 
        Amusement Parks and Attractions;
            (7) 3 members of the travel payments industry appointed by 
        the Travel Industry Association of America;
            (8) 5 members elected by the American Hotel and Motel 
        Association;
            (9) 2 members elected by the American Car Rental 
        Association; 1 member elected by the American Automobile 
        Association, 1 member elected by the American Bus Association, 1 
        member elected by Amtrak;
            (10) 1 member elected by the American Society of Travel 
        Agents, and 1 member elected by the Association of Retail Travel 
        Agents;
            (11) 1 member elected by the National Tour Association, 1 
        member elected by the United States Tour Operators Association;
            (12) 1 member elected by the Cruise Lines International 
        Association, 1 member elected by the National Restaurant 
        Association, 1 member elected by the National Park Hospitality

[[Page 110 STAT. 3405]]

        Association, 1 member elected by the Airports Council 
        International, 1 member elected by the Meeting Professionals 
        International, 1 member elected by the American Sightseeing 
        International, 4 members elected by the Travel Industry 
        Association of America;
            (13) 1 member elected by the Rural Tourism Foundation;
            (14) 1 member elected by the American Association of 
        Museums; and
            (15) 1 member elected by the National Trust for Historic 
        Preservation.

    (c) Chair.--The Board shall elect a Chair for an initial term of 2 
years. After such initial term, the Chair shall be elected for such term 
as the Board may designate.
    (d) President.--The Board shall appoint and establish the 
compensation and duties of a President of the Organization who shall 
assist the Chair in organizing and carrying out the necessary functions 
of the Board. The duties of the President shall include serving as a 
non-voting member of the Tourism Policy Council established under 
section 301 of the International Travel Act of 1961.
    (e) Powers and Duties of the Board.--
            (1) The Board shall adopt for itself and the Organization 
        such bylaws and delegation of authority as it deems necessary 
        and proper, which shall--
                    (A) require at least a three-fifths majority vote 
                for amendment;
                    (B) set forth the process for the number, terms, and 
                appointment or election of future Board members;
                    (C) provide the authority for the hiring and 
                compensation of staff; and
                    (D) establish the procedures for calling meetings 
                and providing appropriate notice, including procedures 
                for closing meetings where confidential information or 
                strategy will be discussed.
            (2) The Board shall designate a place of business for the 
        receipt of process for the Organization, subject to the laws of 
        the State or district so designated, where such laws do not 
        conflict with the provisions of this Act.
            (3) The Board shall present testimony and make available 
        reports on its findings and recommendations to the Congress and 
        to legislatures of the States on at least a biannual basis.
            (4) Within one year of the date of its first meeting, the 
        Board shall report to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, 
        and Transportation and the House Committee on Commerce on a plan 
        for long-term financing for the Organization, with a focus on 
        contributions from the private sector and State and local 
        entities, and, if necessary, make recommendations to the 
        Congress and the President for further legislation.

    (f) Compensation and Expenses.--The Chair and members of the Board 
shall serve without compensation but may be compensated for expenses 
incurred in carrying out the duties of the Board.
    (g) Immunity.--Members of the Board shall not be personally liable 
for any action taken by the Board.
    (h) Meetings.--The Board shall meet at the call of the Chair, but 
not less frequently than semiannually. The Board shall meet within 2 
months of appointment of all members, but in any case

[[Page 110 STAT. 3406]]

no later than 6 months after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 5. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141c.>>  SYMBOLS, EMBLEMS, TRADEMARKS, AND 
            NAMES.

    (a) In General.--The Organization shall provide for the design of 
such symbols, emblems, trademarks, and names as may be appropriate and 
shall take all action necessary to protect and regulate the use of such 
symbols, emblems, trademarks, and names under law.
    (b) Exclusive Right of the Organization.--The Organization shall 
have exclusive right to use the name ``United States National Tourism 
Organization'' and the acronym ``USNTO'', the symbol described in 
subsection (c)(1)(A), the emblem described in subsection (c)(1)(B), and 
the words ``United States National Tourism Organization'', or any 
combination thereof, subject to the use reserved by subsection (c)(2).
    (c) Unauthorized Use; Civil Action.--
            (1) In general.--Any person who, without the consent of the 
        Organization, uses--
                    (A) the symbol of the Organization;
                    (B) the emblem of the Organization;
                    (C) any trademark, trade name, sign, symbol, or 
                insignia falsely representing association with, or 
                authorization by, the Organization; or
                    (D) the words ``United States National Tourism 
                Organization'' or the acronym ``USNTO'' or any 
                combination or simulation thereof tending to cause 
                confusion, to cause mistake, to deceive, or to falsely 
                suggest a connection with the Organization or any 
                Organization activity;
        for the purpose of trade, to induce the sale of any goods or 
        services, or to promote any exhibition, shall be subject to suit 
        in a civil action brought in the appropriate court by the 
        Organization for the remedies provided in the Act of July 5, 
        1946 (60 Stat. 427; 15 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.) (popularly known as 
        the Trademark Act of 1946).
            (2) Exception.--Paragraph (1)(D) shall not be construed to 
        prohibit any person who, before the date of the enactment of 
        this Act, actually used the words ``United States National 
        Tourism Organization'' or the acronym ``USNTO'' for any lawful 
        purpose from continuing such lawful use for the same purpose and 
        for the same goods and services.

    (d) Contributors and Suppliers.--The Organization may authorize 
contributors and suppliers of goods and services to use the trade name 
of the Organization as well as any trademark, symbol, insignia, or 
emblem of the Organization in advertising that the contributions, goods, 
or services were donated, supplied, or furnished to or for the use of, 
approved, selected, or used by the Organization.
    (d) Limitation.--The Organization may not adopt or use any existing 
symbol, emblem, trademark, or name that is protected under law 
(including any treaty to which the United States is a party).

SEC. 6. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141d.>>  UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT COOPERATION.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary of Commerce, Secretary of State, the 
United States Trade Representative, Director of the United States 
Information Agency, and the Trade and Development Agency shall--

[[Page 110 STAT. 3407]]

            (1) give priority consideration to recommendations of the 
        Organization; and
            (2) cooperate with the Organization in carrying out its 
        duties.

    (b) Report.--The Under Secretary for International Trade, the 
Assistant Secretary for Trade Development, the Assistant Secretary and 
Director General for the United States and Foreign Commercial Service, 
the Director of the United States Information Agency, the United States 
Trade Representative, and the Trade and Development Agency shall report 
within 2 years of the date of the enactment of this Act, and every 2 
years thereafter to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation and the House Committee on Commerce on any travel and 
tourism activities carried out with the participation of the United 
States Federal Government.

SEC. 7. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141e.>>  SUNSET.

    (a) Two Year Deadline for Development of Comprehensive Long-Term 
Financing Plan.--If within 2 years after the date of the enactment of 
this Act, the Board has not developed and implemented a comprehensive 
plan for the long-term financing of the Organization, then sections 3 
through 6 of this Act are repealed.
    (b) Suspension or Termination of Operations for Insufficient 
Funds.--The Board may suspend or terminate the Organization if 
sufficient private sector and State or local government funds are not 
identified or made available to continue the Organization's operations.

SEC. 8. TRADE PROMOTION COORDINATING COMMITTEE.

    Section 2312 of the Export Enhancement Act of 1988 (15 U.S.C. 4727) 
is amended in subsection (c) as follows:
            (1) By striking ``and'' at the end of paragraph (4).
            (2) By striking the period at the end of paragraph (5) and 
        inserting ``; and''.
            (3) By adding after paragraph (5) the following:
            ``(6) reflect the recommendations of the United States 
        National Tourism Organization to the degree considered 
        appropriate by the TPCC.''.

SEC. 9. REPEAL OF UNITED STATES TRAVEL AND TOURISM ADMINISTRATION AND 
            RELATED PROVISIONS.

    (a) In General.--Sections 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 301, 303, 304, 
305, 306, and 307 of the International Travel Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C 
2123, 2123a-2123d, 2124, 2124b, and 2126-2129) are repealed.
    (b) Tourism Policy and Export Promotion Act of 1992.--Section 4 of 
the Tourism Policy and Export Promotion Act <<NOTE: 22 USC 2124c.>>  of 
1992 is amended in subsection (c)(1)(B)(i) and subsection (c)(2) by 
striking ``Under Secretary of Commerce for Travel and Tourism'' and 
inserting ``Secretary of Commerce''.

SEC. 10. POWERS AND DUTIES OF SECRETARY OF COMMERCE.

    Section 201 of the International Travel Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2122) 
is amended to read as follows:
    ``Sec. 201. In order to carry out the national tourism policy 
established in section 101(b) and by the United States National Tourism 
Organization Act of 1996, the Secretary of Commerce

[[Page 110 STAT. 3408]]

(hereafter in this Act referred to as the `Secretary') shall develop and 
implement a comprehensive plan to perform critical tourism functions 
which, in the determination of the Secretary, are not being carried out 
by the United States National Tourism Organization or other private 
sector entities or State governments. Such plan may include programs 
to--
            ``(1) collect and publish comprehensive international travel 
        and tourism statistics and other marketing information;
            ``(2) design, implement, and publish international travel 
        and tourism forecasting models;
            ``(3) facilitate the reduction or elimination of barriers to 
        international travel and tourism; and
            ``(4) work with the United States National Tourism 
        Organization, the Tourism Policy Council, State tourism 
        agencies, and Federal agencies in--
                    ``(A) coordinating the Federal implementation of a 
                national travel and tourism policy;
                    ``(B) representing the United States' international 
                travel and tourism interests to foreign governments; and
                    ``(C) maintaining United States participation in 
                international travel and tourism trade shows and fairs 
                until such activities can be transferred to such 
                Organization and other private sector entities.''.

SEC. 11. TOURISM POLICY COUNCIL.

    Section 302 of the International Travel Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 
2124a) is repealed and the following is inserted:
    ``Sec. 301. <<NOTE: Establishment. 22 USC 2124.>>  (a) In order to 
ensure that the United States' national interest in tourism is fully 
considered in Federal decision making, there is established a 
coordinating council to be known as the Tourism Policy Council 
(hereafter in this Act referred to as the `Council').

    ``(b) The Council shall consist of the following individuals:
            ``(1) The Secretary of Commerce, who shall serve as the 
        Chairman of the Council.
            ``(2) The Under Secretary of Commerce for International 
        Trade.
            ``(3) The Director of the Office of Management and Budget.
            ``(4) The Secretary of State.
            ``(5) The Secretary of the Interior.
            ``(6) The Secretary of Labor.
            ``(7) The Secretary of Transportation.
            ``(8) The Commissioner of the United States Customs 
        Service.
            ``(9) The President of the United States National Tourism 
        Organization.
            ``(10) The Commissioner of the Immigration and 
        Naturalization Service.
            ``(11) Representatives of other Federal agencies which have 
        affected interests at each meeting as deemed appropriate and 
        invited by the Chairman.

    ``(c) Members of the Council shall serve without additional 
compensation.
    ``(d) The Council shall conduct its first meeting not later than 6 
months after the date of the enactment of the United States National 
Tourism Organization Act of 1996. Thereafter the Council shall meet not 
less than 2 times each year.

[[Page 110 STAT. 3409]]

    ``(e)(1) The Council shall coordinate national policies and programs 
relating to international travel and tourism, recreation, and national 
heritage resources, which involve Federal agencies;
    ``(2) The Council may request directly from any Federal department 
or agency such personnel, information, services, or facilities as deemed 
necessary by the Chairman and to the extent permitted by law and within 
the limits of available funds.
    ``(3) Federal departments and agencies may, in their discretion, 
detail to temporary duty with the Council such personnel as the Chairman 
may request for carrying out the functions of the Council. Each such 
detail of personnel shall be without loss of seniority, pay, or other 
employee status.
    ``(f) Where necessary to prevent the public disclosure of non-public 
information which may be presented by a Council member, the Council may 
hold, at the discretion of the Chairman, a closed meeting which may 
exclude any individual who is not an officer or employee of the United 
States.
    ``(g) The Council <<NOTE: Reports.>>  shall submit an annual report 
for the preceding fiscal year to the President for transmittal to the 
Congress on or before December 31 of each year. The report shall 
include--
            ``(1) a comprehensive and detailed report of the activities 
        and accomplishments of the Council;
            ``(2) the results of Council efforts to coordinate the 
        policies and programs of member's agencies that have a 
        significant effect on international travel and tourism, 
        recreation, and national heritage resources, including progress 
        toward resolving interagency conflicts and development of 
        cooperative program activity;
            ``(3) an analysis of problems referred to the Council by 
        State and local governments, the tourism industry, the United 
        States National Tourism Organization, the Secretary of Commerce, 
        along with a detailed summary of any action taken or anticipated 
        to resolve such problems; and
            ``(4) any recommendation as deemed appropriate by the 
        Council.

    ``(h) The membership of the President of the United States National 
Tourism Organization on the Council shall not in itself make the Federal 
Advisory Committee Act applicable to the 
Council.''.

[[Page 110 STAT. 3410]]

SEC. 12. DEFINITIONS. <<NOTE: 22 USC 2141f.>> 

    For purposes of this Act--
            (1) the term ``Organization'' means the United States 
        National Tourism Organization established under section 3; and
            (2) the term ``Board'' means the United States National 
        Tourism Organization Board established under section 4.

    Approved October 11, 1996.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 2579 (S. 1735):
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

HOUSE REPORTS: No. 104-839, Pt. 1 (Comm. on Commerce).
SENATE REPORTS: No. 104-341 accompanying S. 1735 (Comm. on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation).
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 142 (1996):
            Aug. 2, S. 1735 considered and passed Senate.
            Sept. 26, H.R. 2579 considered and passed House.
            Sept. 28, considered and passed Senate.

                                  <all>