Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Passed House amended (08/07/1998)

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Title I: Appropriations

Title II: District of Columbia Student Opportunity

Scholarships

District of Columbia Appropriations Act, 1999 - Title I: Appropriations - Makes appropriations for the District of Columbia for FY 1999, including amounts for: (1) the Federal contribution to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority for improvements and expansion of the Mount Vernon Square Metrorail station located at the site of the proposed Washington Convention Center project; (2) the Federal contribution to the Nation's Capital Infrastructure Fund; (3) the Federal contribution for an environmental study and related activities at the Lorton Correctional Complex; (4) the Federal contribution for the District's Offender Supervision, Defender, and Court Services Agency (Agency) for establishment of a residential sanctions center and drug testing, intervention, and treatment, to be used to ensure adequate response to persons who violate conditions of supervision and to implement recommendations of the District's Truth- in-Sentencing Commission; (5) the Federal payment to the District's Corrections Trustee for operations and correctional facilities; (6) the Federal payment to the District courts; (7) the Federal payment to the District's Offender Supervision, Defender, and Court Services Agency for necessary expenses of Parole Revocation, Adult Probation and Offender Supervision and to be made available to the Public Defender Service and the Pretrial Services Agency; (8) the Federal payment to the Metropolitan Police Department; (9) the Federal payment to the Fire Department; (10) a Federal contribution to the Board of Trustees of Boys Town U.S.A. for expansion of the operations of Boys Town of Washington; (11) the Federal payment to the Historical Society of Washington, D.C. for the establishment and operation of a Museum of the District at the Carnegie Library at Mount Vernon Square; (12) the Federal payment to the U.S. Park Police; (13) the Federal payment to the District Department of Housing and Community Development for a study by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers of necessary improvements to the Southwest Waterfront in the District; (14) the Federal payment to the International Youth Service and Development Corps, Inc. for a mentoring program for at-risk children in the District and for the operation of a resource hotline for low-income individuals in the District; and (15) a Federal contribution to the public education system for public charter schools.

Appropriates specified sums out of the District's general fund (and other funds, in some cases) for the current fiscal year for: (1) governmental direction and support; (2) economic development and regulation; (3) public safety and justice; (4) the public education system; (5) human support services; (6) public works; (7) the Washington Convention Center Fund transfer payment; (8) repayment of certain loans and interest; (9) repayment of General Fund Recovery Debt; (10) payment of interest on short term borrowing; (11) lease payments in accordance with the Certificates of Participation involving the land site underlying the building located at One Judiciary Square; (12) human resources development; (13) the District's Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority (Authority); (14) receivership programs; (15) the Water and Sewer Authority and the Washington Aqueduct; (16) the Lottery and Charitable Games Control Board; (17) the Cable Television Enterprise Fund; (18) the Public Service Commission; (19) the Office of the People's Counsel; (20) the Office of Banking and Financial Institutions; (21) the Department of Insurance and Securities Regulation; (22) D.C. General Hospital; (23) the Starplex Fund; (24) the D.C. Retirement Board; (25) the Correctional Industries Fund; (26) the Washington Convention Center Enterprise Fund; and (27) capital outlays (including rescissions).

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.

Bars the use of revenues from Federal sources to support the operations of the D.C. Statehood and Statehood Compact Commissions. Requires the District to identify the sources of funding for Admission to Statehood from its own locally-generated revenues.

(Sec. 110) Prohibits funds appropriated in this Act from being available to pay the salary of any District government employee whose name, title, grade, salary, work experience, and salary history are not available for inspection by specified congressional committees and subcommittees and the District Council.

(Sec. 114) Bars the D.C. Mayor from borrowing any funds for capital projects without prior approval of the District Council.

(Sec. 124) Applies any sequestration orders under the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 (Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Act) to each account appropriating Federal funds in this Act rather than to the aggregate total of such accounts. Requires the Mayor, in the event such an order is issued after amounts appropriated to the District have been paid, to pay sequestered amounts to the Secretary of the Treasury .

(Sec. 127) Bars the use of Federal funds provided in this Act to provide for salaries or other expenses associated with the offices of U.S. Senator or Representative under the District of Columbia Statehood Constitutional Convention Initiatives of 1979.

(Sec. 130) Prohibits funds contained in this Act from being made available under specified conditions, to pay the fees of an attorney who represents a party who prevails in an action brought against the District public schools under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act nor shall the fees be made available to an attorney who represents a party who prevails in an administrative proceeding under such Act.

(Sec. 131) Prohibits the expenditure of funds appropriated under this Act for abortions except where the mother's life would be endangered if the fetus were carried to term or in cases of rape or incest.

(Sec. 132) Bars the use of funds made available by this Act to implement any system of registration of unmarried, cohabitating couples for purposes of extending benefits to such couples on the same basis as such benefits are extended to married couples or to implement the District Domestic Partner Act (also known as the District of Columbia Health Care Benefits Expansion Act of 1992).

(Sec. 135) Requires by FY 1999, or within 15 calendar days after the enactment of this Act, whichever occurs later, and each succeeding year, the Emergency Transitional Education Board of Trustees and the University of the District of Columbia (University) to submit to the appropriate congressional committees, the Mayor, the District Council, the Consensus Commission, and the Authority, a revised appropriated funds operating budget for the public school system and the University for such fiscal year that is in the total amount of the approved appropriation and that realigns budgeted data for personal services and other-than-personal services, respectively, with anticipated actual expenditures.

(Sec. 136) Requires the Emergency Transitional Education Board of Trustees, the Board of Trustees of the University, the Board of Library Trustees, and the Board of Governors of the University of the District of Columbia School of Law to vote on and approve their respective annual or revised budgets before submission to the Mayor for inclusion in the Mayor's budget submission to the District Council or before submitting their respective budgets directly to the Council.

(Sec. 137) Establishes a ceiling on total operating expenses for the District for FY 1998. Permits increases of such amount for: (1) one-time emergency or unanticipated operating or capital needs transactions approved by the Authority; and (2) additional approved expenditures which the Chief Financial Officer certifies will produce additional revenues during such fiscal year at least equal to 200 percent of such expenditures.

Authorizes, to the extent that the sum of total revenues of the District for such fiscal year exceed the total amount provided for, the Chief Financial Officer, with the approval of the Authority, to credit up to ten percent of the amount of such difference, not to exceed $3.3 million to a reserve fund which may be expended for operating purposes in future fiscal years (in accordance with the financial plans and budgets for such years). Prohibits the Chief Financial Officer from reprogramming for operating expenses any funds derived from bonds, notes, or other obligations issued for capital projects. Sets forth conditions under which grants excluded from such ceiling may be accepted.

Requires the Authority, within 20 calendar days after the end of each fiscal quarter starting FY 1999, to report to specified congressional committees on an itemized accounting of all non-appropriated funds obligated or expended by the Authority for the quarter.

Applies local revenues collected in excess of amounts required to support appropriations in this Act for District operating expenses for FY 1999 to: (1) the elimination of the general fund accumulated deficit; (2) a reserve account not to exceed $250 million to be used to finance seasonal cash needs (in lieu of short term borrowings); (3) accelerate repayment of cash borrowed from the Water and Sewer Fund; and (4) to reduce the outstanding long term debt.

(Sec. 138) Directs the District of Columbia Emergency Transitional Education Board of Trustees to: (1) develop a comprehensive plan to identify and accomplish energy conservation measures to achieve maximum cost-effective energy and water savings; (2) enter into innovative financing and contractual mechanisms for such purposes; and (3) encourage District agencies to participate in programs conducted by utilities for the management of electricity or gas demand or energy or water conservation.

(Sec. 139) Requires an employee of the District public schools to be: (1) classified as an Educational Service employee; (2) placed under the personnel authority of the Board of Education; and (3) subject to all Board rules.

Mandates that school-based personnel shall constitute a separate competitive area from nonschool-based personnel who shall not compete with school-based personnel for retention purposes.

(Sec. 140) Prohibits the use of funds made available by this Act or any other Act from being used to provide any District officer or employee with an official vehicle unless the individual uses the vehicle only in the performance of his or her official duties. Excludes travel between the officer's or employee's residence and workplace (except in the case of a police officer who resides in the District).

Requires the Chief Financial Officer of the District to submit, by November 15, 1998, an inventory, as of September 30, 1998, of all vehicles owned, leased, or operated by the District government. Specifies the contents of such inventory.

Provides that, for purposes of determining the amount of funds expended by any entity within the District government during FY 1999 and each succeeding fiscal year, any expenditures of the District government attributable to any District government officers or employees who provide services which are within the authority and jurisdiction of the entity (including any portion of the compensation paid to the officer or employee attributable to the time spent in providing such services) shall be treated as expenditures made from the entity's budget, without regard to whether the officers or employees are assigned to the entity or otherwise treated as the entity's officers or employees.

(Sec. 141) Sets forth Buy American provisions.

(Sec. 142) Provides that, notwithstanding any provision of any federally-granted charter or any other provision of law, the real property of the National Education Association located in the District shall be subject to taxation by the District in the same manner as any similar organization.

(Sec. 143) Prohibits funds contained in this Act: (1) or any other Act from being used to pay the salary or expenses of any officer or employee of any District government agency or of any entity within the District government who fails to provide information requested by the Chief Financial Officer; (2) from being used for purposes of the annual independent audit of the District government (including the Authority) for FY 1999 unless the audit is conducted by the Inspector General of the District and the audit includes a comparison of audited actual year-end results with the revenues submitted in the budget document for such year and the appropriations enacted into law for such year; and (3) from being used by the District Corporation Counsel or any other District government officer or entity to provide assistance for any petition drive or civil action which seeks to require the Congress to provide for voting representation in the Congress for the District.

(Sec. 145) Conditions expenditure of appropriations made by this Act for programs or functions for which a reorganization plan is required only on the approval by the Authority of the required reorganization plan.

(Sec. 146) Makes the evaluation process and instruments for evaluating District public school employees a non-negotiable item for collective bargaining purposes.

(Sec. 148) Repeals the Residency Requirement Reinstatement Amendment Act of 1998.

(Sec. 149) Prohibits Federal funds appropriated under this Act from being used to carry out any program of distributing sterile needles or syringes for the hypodermic injection of any illegal drug.

(Sec. 150) Prohibits funds contained in this Act from being used: (1) to transfer or confine inmates classified above the medium security level, as defined by the Federal Bureau of Prisons classification instrument, to the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center located in Youngstown, Ohio; (2) to conduct any ballot initiative which seeks to legalize or otherwise reduce penalties associated with the possession, use, or distribution of any schedule I substance under the Controlled Substances Act or any tetrahydrocannibinols derivative; (3) for any program of distributing sterile needles or syringes for the hypodermic injection of any illegal drug, or for any payment to any individual or entity who carries out any such program; and (4) to carry out any joint adoption of a child between individuals who are not related by blood or marriage.

(Sec. 154) Makes it unlawful for any individual under 18 years of age to possess any cigarette or other tobacco product in the District with the exception of an individual making a delivery of cigarettes or tobacco products in pursuance of employment. Sets forth penalties for violations of this section.

Title II: District of Columbia Student Opportunity Scholarships - Authorizes the establishment of the District of Columbia Scholarship Corporation as a private, nonprofit corporation to administer, publicize, and evaluate the District of Columbia (District) scholarship program and to determine student and school eligibility for program participation.

Establishes the District of Columbia Scholarship Fund, to be administered by the Secretary of the Treasury, through which annual funds shall be provided to the District and used by the Corporation for the program. Authorizes appropriations to the Fund for FY 1999 through 2003.

Provides for: (1) organization and management of a Corporation Board of Directors, as well as related offices and staff; and (2) the annual audit of Corporation records.

(Sec. 203) Authorizes the Corporation to award tuition scholarships and enhanced achievement scholarships to District students in kindergarten through grade 12 with family incomes not exceeding 185 percent of the national poverty line. Provides for: (1) certification requirements for educational institutions for eligibility to participate; (2) payments from the Corporation to participating institutions; (3) scholarship payments and amounts; (4) participation requirements for such institutions; (5) annual institution reporting requirements; (6) program appraisal by the Comptroller General, performed through an independent evaluation agency (with an authorization of appropriations for such appraisal); (7) an annual program progress report from the Corporation to the appropriate congressional committees; and (8) judicial review of actions challenging the program.

Makes appropriations to the Scholarship Fund.