Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed Senate amended (08/02/1996)

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Title I: Opal Creek Wilderness and Scenic Recreation Area

Title II: Upper Klamath Basin

Title III: Deschutes Basin

Title IV: Mount Hood Corridor

Title V: Coquille Tribal Forest

Title VI: Bull Run Watershed Protection

Title VII: Oregon Islands Wilderness, Additions

Title VIII: Umpqua River Land Exchange Study

Oregon Resource Conservation Act of 1996 - Title I: Opal Creek Wilderness and Scenic Recreation Area - Opal Creek Wilderness and Opal Creek Scenic Recreation Area Act of 1996 - Provides that on the determination of the Secretary of Agriculture that certain parcels of land have been donated to the United States without encumbrances and that a binding agreement between the Secretary and owners of specified interests for the disposition of such interests to the Government has been executed: (1) certain land in the Willamette National Forest in Oregon shall be designated as the Opal Creek Wilderness (OCW); (2) the part of the Bull of the Woods Wilderness located within the Forest shall be incorporated into the OCW; and (3) the Secretary shall establish the Opal Creek Scenic Recreation Area within the Forest. Requires lands or interests conveyed to the United States to become part of the OCW or the Opal Creek Scenic Recreation Area as appropriate.

(Sec. 105) Requires, with respect to such Area, the Secretary to: (1) prepare a comprehensive Opal Creek Management Plan which shall become part of the land and resource management plan for the Forest; (2) permit recreation activities at no less than the levels in existence upon enactment of this Act; (3) prepare a transportation plan to maintain reasonable motorized and other access to recreation sites and facilities, including access by persons with disabilities (otherwise prohibits motorized vehicles in the Area); (4) permit hunting and fishing, with limitations; (5) prohibit the cutting or selling of trees, with specified exceptions; and (6) review and revise the inventory of cultural and historic resources on the public land in the Area. Withdraws Area lands from operations under the public land laws, mining laws, and mineral and geothermal leasing laws. Specifies exceptions applicable with respect to the Bornite Project. Places restrictions on new water impoundments in the Area.

(Sec. 106) Directs the Secretary to establish an advisory council for the Area and to consult with the Council and seek the views of private groups, individuals, the public, other government agencies, and nonprofit organizations regarding the Area.

(Sec. 107) Provides for the acquisition of lands within the Area. Authorizes the Secretary to conduct any necessary environmental response actions within the Area.

(Sec. 108) Provides for an equal-value land exchange between the Rosboro Lumber Company and the Government. Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 109) Amends the Wild and Scenic Recreation Rivers Act to designate Elkhorn Creek as a wild and scenic river.

(Sec. 110) Requires the Secretary, upon completion of a management plan and receipt of an economic development projects plan developed by the State of Oregon, to provide $15 million to Oregon to be used to make grants and loans for such projects that benefit the local communities in the vicinity of the Area. Requires the State to report on the use of such funds annually.

Title II: Upper Klamath Basin - Directs the Upper Klamath Basin Working Group, through the Klamath Basin Ecosystem Restoration Office, to propose ecological restoration projects, economic development and stability projects, and projects designed to reduce the impacts of drought conditions to be undertaken in the Upper Klamath Basin in Oregon based on a consensus of the Working Group membership. Requires the Secretary to pay up to 50 percent of the cost of such projects during FY 1997 through 2001 (with a $1 million annual limit).

Requires the Secretary to formulate a cooperative agreement among the Working Group, the Klamath River Basin Fisheries Task Force, the Trinity River Restoration Task Force, and the Klamath River Basin Compact Commission to ensure that projects proposed and funded through the Group are consistent with other basin-wide fish and wildlife restoration and conservation plans. Authorizes appropriations.

Title III: Deschutes Basin - Directs the Deschutes River Basin Working Group to propose ecological restoration projects on Federal and non-Federal lands and waters to be undertaken in the Deschutes River Basin based on a consensus of the Working Group membership, provided that such projects, when involving Federal land or funds, shall be proposed to the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR) in the Department of the Interior and other Federal agencies with affected land or funds. Requires BOR to pay up to 50 percent of the cost of such projects during FY 1997 through 2001 (with a $1 million annual limit). Authorizes appropriations.

Title IV: Mount Hood Corridor - Provides for an equal-value land exchange between Longview Fibre Company and the Secretary of the Interior. Requires: (1) all lands managed by the Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), in the Mount Hood Corridor which can be seen from U.S. Highway 26 to be managed primarily for the protection or enhancement of scenic qualities; and (2) management prescriptions for other resource values associated with these lands to be planned and conducted for purposes other than timber harvest, so as not to impair scenic qualities in the Corridor. Allows timber cutting in the Corridor after a resource-damaging catastrophic event only for specified management objectives.

Requires Forest Service Road 2503 to remain closed, except for limited uses, to protect resources and to prevent illegal dumping and vandalism in the Corridor. Exempts this title from the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 for one year. Authorizes appropriations.

Title V: Coquille Tribal Forest - Amends the Coquille Restoration Act to direct the Secretary of the Interior, two years after enactment of this title, to take approximately 5,400 acres in Coos County, Oregon, into trust for the Coquille Tribe. Designates such lands as the Coquille Forest. Provides for management of such lands by BLM in the interim two years. Directs the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs to initiate development of a forest management plan and the Secretary to assist in the transition of forest management operations to the Assistant Secretary.

Requires the Secretary to: (1) manage the Forest, acting through the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs, under applicable State and Federal forestry and environmental protection laws, subject to critical habitat designations under the Endangered Species Act and to the standards and guidelines of Federal forest plans on adjacent or nearby Federal lands, and in accordance with the laws pertaining to the management of Indian Trust lands; and (2) distribute revenues in accordance with existing Federal law.

Subjects unprocessed logs harvested from the Forest to the same Federal statutory restrictions on export to foreign nations that apply to unprocessed logs harvested from Federal lands.

Requires all sales of timber from land subject to this title to be advertised, offered, and awarded according to competitive bidding practices, with sales being awarded to the highest responsible bidder.

Allows the Secretary, upon a satisfactory showing of management competence, to enter into a binding Indian self-determination agreement with the Tribe which provides for it to carry out all or a portion of the forest management for the Forest. Conditions the agreement on the: (1) Tribe entering into a binding Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Oregon relating to the establishment and management of the Forest; and (2) the Secretary's authority to rescind the agreement without encumbrances.

Requires the Forest to remain open to public access for purposes of hunting, fishing, recreation, and transportation, except when closed by Federal or State law or when the Tribe and the State of Oregon agree in writing that restrictions on access are necessary or appropriate to prevent harm to natural resources, cultural resources, or environmental quality.

Vests jurisdiction in the United States District Court for the District of Oregon over actions: (1) against the Secretary arising out of claims that this title has been violated; and (2) between Oregon and the Tribe arising out of claims of breach of the MOA. Prohibits suits against the Secretary for claims that the MOA has been violated. Limits remedies available under this title to equitable relief and excludes damages.

Specifies exclusive regulatory civil jurisdiction vested in the States of Oregon.

Title VI: Bull Run Watershed Protection - Requires the Secretary of Agriculture to prohibit timber cutting within the hydrographic boundary of the Bull Run River Drainage, including certain lands within the unit and located below the headworks of Portland, Oregon's water storage and delivery project, except for the: (1) protection or enhancement of water quality in the area; (2) protection, enhancement, or maintenance of water quantity available from the area; (3) construction, expansion, protection, or maintenance of municipal water supply facilities; or (4) construction, expansion, protection, or maintenance of facilities for the transmission of energy through and over the unit or previously authorized hydroelectric projects associated with such facilities. Prohibits the Secretary from authorizing a salvage sale in the Area.

(Sec. 605) Requires the Secretary of Agriculture to study and report to specified congressional committees on that part of the Little Sandy Watershed that is within the Bull Run Management Unit (study area) to determine: (1) the impact of management activities within the study area on the quality of drinking water provided to the Portland metropolitan area; (2) the identity and location of certain ecological features within the study area; and (3) the location and extent of any significant cultural or other values within the study area. Prohibits the Secretary from advertising, offering, or awarding any timber sale within the study area for a two-year period after the enactment of this title.

(Sec. 606) Provides that lands with the Bull Run Management Unit but not contained within the Bull Run River Drainage shall continue to be managed in accordance with existing Federal law.

Title VII: Oregon Islands Wilderness, Additions - Designates as wilderness: (1) certain lands within the boundaries of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge, Oregon; and (2) all other federally owned rocks, reefs, islets, and islands lying within three geographic miles off the Oregon coast and above mean high tide and also within the Refuge boundaries under the administration of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service or presently under the jurisdiction of BLM.

Makes permanent Public land Order 6287 which withdrew certain rocks, reefs, islets, and islands lying within three geographical miles off the coast of Oregon and above mean high tide as an addition to the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge. Title VIII: Umpqua River Land Exchange Study - Directs the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture to: (1) consult, coordinate, and cooperate with the Umpqua Land Exchange Project (ULEP), affected units and State and local agencies, and, as appropriate, the World Forestry Center and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to assist ULEP's ongoing efforts in studying and analyzing land exchange opportunities in the Umpqua River basin and to provide assistance and information to such entities; and (2) report thereon to specified congressional committees. Lists priority matters for specific study by the Secretaries, including identifying: (1) areas where consolidation of land ownership could promote long term species protection; (2) areas where land exchanges might be utilized to better satisfy sustainable timber harvest goals; and (3) options to insure that post-exchange revenues will approximate pre-exchange revenues.

(Sec. 803) Authorizes appropriations.