Text: S.927 — 105th Congress (1997-1998)All Information (Except Text)

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Public Law No: 105-160 (03/06/1998)

 
[105th Congress Public Law 160]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]


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[DOCID: f:publ160.105]


[[Page 112 STAT. 21]]

Public Law 105-160
105th Congress

                                 An Act


 
   To reauthorize the Sea Grant Program. <<NOTE:  Mar. 6, 1998 -  [S. 
                                 927]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: National Sea 
Grant College Program Reauthorization Act of 1998. 33 USC 1121 note.>> 

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``National Sea Grant College Program 
Reauthorization Act of 1998''.
SEC. 2. AMENDMENT OF NATIONAL SEA GRANT COLLEGE PROGRAM ACT.

    Except as otherwise expressly provided, whenever in this Act an 
amendment or repeal is expressed in terms of an amendment or repeal to, 
or repeal of, a section or other provision, the reference shall be 
considered to be made to a section or other provision of the National 
Sea Grant College Program Act (33 U.S.C. 1121 et seq.).

SEC. 3. FINDINGS.

    (a) Section 202(a)(1) (33 U.S.C. 1121(a)(1)) is amended--
            (1) by redesignating subparagraphs (D) and (E) as 
        subparagraphs (E) and (F), respectively; and
            (2) by inserting after subparagraph (C) the following:
                    ``(D) encourage the development of forecast and 
                analysis systems for coastal hazards;''.

    (b) Section 202(a)(6) (33 U.S.C. 1121(a)(6)) is amended by striking 
the second sentence and inserting the following: ``The most cost-
effective way to promote such activities is through continued and 
increased Federal support of the establishment, development, and 
operation of programs and projects by sea grant colleges, sea grant 
institutes, and other institutions.''.

SEC. 4. DEFINITIONS.

    (a) Section 203 (33 U.S.C. 1122) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (3)--
                    (A) by striking ``their university or'' and 
                inserting ``his or her''; and
                    (B) by striking ``college, programs, or regional 
                consortium'' and inserting ``college or sea grant 
                institute'';
            (2) by striking paragraph (4) and inserting the following:
            ``(4) The term `field related to ocean, coastal, and Great 
        Lakes resources' means any discipline or field, including marine 
        affairs, resource management, technology, education, or science, 
        which is concerned with or likely to improve the understanding,

[[Page 112 STAT. 22]]

        assessment, development, utilization, or conservation of ocean, 
        coastal, or Great Lakes resources.'';
            (3) by redesignating paragraphs (5) through (15) as 
        paragraphs (7) through (17), respectively, and inserting after 
        paragraph (4) the following:
            ``(5) The term `Great Lakes' includes Lake Champlain.
            ``(6) The term `institution' means any public or private 
        institution of higher education, institute, laboratory, or State 
        or local agency.'';
            (4) by striking ``regional consortium, institution of higher 
        education, institute, or laboratory'' in paragraph (11) (as 
        redesignated) and inserting ``institute or other institution''; 
        and
            (5) by striking paragraphs (12) through (17) (as 
        redesignated) and inserting after paragraph (11) the following:
            ``(12) The term `project' means any individually described 
        activity in a field related to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes 
        resources involving research, education, training, or advisory 
        services administered by a person with expertise in such a 
        field.
            ``(13) The term `sea grant college' means any institution, 
        or any association or alliance of two or more such institutions, 
        designated as such by the Secretary under section 207 (33 U.S.C. 
        1126) of this Act.
            ``(14) The term `sea grant institute' means any institution, 
        or any association or alliance of two or more such institutions, 
        designated as such by the Secretary under section 207 (33 U.S.C. 
        1126) of this Act.
            ``(15) The term `sea grant program' means a program of 
        research and outreach which is administered by one or more sea 
        grant colleges or sea grant institutes.
            ``(16) The term `Secretary' means the Secretary of Commerce, 
        acting through the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and 
        Atmosphere.
            ``(17) The term `State' means any State of the United 
        States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto 
        Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth 
        of the Mariana Islands, or any other territory or possession of 
        the United States.''.

    (b) The Act is amended--
            (1) in section 209(b) (33 U.S.C. 1128(b)), as amended by 
        this Act, by striking ``, the Under Secretary,''; and
            (2) by striking ``Under Secretary'' every other place it 
        appears and inserting ``Secretary''.

SEC. 5. NATIONAL SEA GRANT COLLEGE PROGRAM.

    Section 204 (33 U.S.C. 1123) is amended to read as follows:

``SEC. 204. NATIONAL SEA GRANT COLLEGE PROGRAM.

    ``(a) Program Maintenance.--The Secretary shall maintain within the 
Administration a program to be known as the national sea grant college 
program. The national sea grant college program shall be administered by 
a national sea grant office within the Administration.
    ``(b) Program Elements.--The national sea grant college program 
shall consist of the financial assistance and other activities 
authorized in this title, and shall provide support for the following 
elements--

[[Page 112 STAT. 23]]

            ``(1) sea grant programs which comprise a national sea grant 
        college program network, including international projects 
        conducted within such programs;
            ``(2) administration of the national sea grant college 
        program and this title by the national sea grant office, the 
        Administration, and the panel;
            ``(3) the fellowship program under section 208; and
            ``(4) any national strategic investments in fields relating 
        to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources developed with the 
        approval of the panel, the sea grant colleges, and the sea grant 
        institutes.

    ``(c) Responsibilities of the Secretary.--
            ``(1) The Secretary, in consultation with the panel, sea 
        grant colleges, and sea grant institutes, shall develop a long-
        range strategic plan which establishes priorities for the 
        national sea grant college program and which provides an 
        appropriately balanced response to local, regional, and national 
        needs.
            ``(2) <<NOTE: Guidelines.>> Within 6 months of the date of 
        enactment of the National Sea Grant College Program 
        Reauthorization Act of 1998, the Secretary, in consultation with 
        the panel, sea grant colleges, and sea grant institutes, shall 
        establish guidelines related to the activities and 
        responsibilities of sea grant colleges and sea grant institutes. 
        Such guidelines shall include requirements for the conduct of 
        merit review by the sea grant colleges and sea grant institutes 
        of proposals for grants and contracts to be awarded under 
        section 205, providing, at a minimum, for standardized 
        documentation of such proposals and peer review of all research 
        projects.
            ``(3) <<NOTE: Regulations.>> The Secretary shall by 
        regulation prescribe the qualifications required for designation 
        of sea grant colleges and sea grant institutes under section 
        207.
            ``(4) To carry out the provisions of this title, the 
        Secretary may--
                    ``(A) appoint, assign the duties, transfer, and fix 
                the compensation of such personnel as may be necessary, 
                in accordance with civil service laws;
                    ``(B) make appointments with respect to temporary 
                and intermittent services to the extent authorized by 
                section 3109 of title 5, United States Code;
                    ``(C) publish or arrange for the publication of, and 
                otherwise disseminate, in cooperation with other offices 
                and programs in the Administration and without regard to 
                section 501 of title 44, United States Code, any 
                information of research, educational, training or other 
                value in fields related to ocean, coastal, or Great 
                Lakes resources;
                    ``(D) enter into contracts, cooperative agreements, 
                and other transactions without regard to section 5 of 
                title 41, United States Code;
                    ``(E) notwithstanding section 1342 of title 31, 
                United States Code, accept donations and voluntary and 
                uncompensated services;
                    ``(F) accept funds from other Federal departments 
                and agencies, including agencies within the 
                Administration, to pay for and add to grants made and 
                contracts entered into by the Secretary; and
                    ``(G) promulgate such rules and regulations as may 
                be necessary and appropriate.

[[Page 112 STAT. 24]]

    ``(d) Director of the National Sea Grant College Program.--
            ``(1) The Secretary shall appoint, as the Director of the 
        National Sea Grant College Program, a qualified individual who 
        has appropriate administrative experience and knowledge or 
        expertise in fields related to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes 
        resources. The Director shall be appointed and compensated, 
        without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, 
        governing appointments in the competitive service, at a rate 
        payable under section 5376 of title 5, United States Code.
            ``(2) Subject to the supervision of the Secretary, the 
        Director shall administer the national sea grant college program 
        and oversee the operation of the national sea grant office. In 
        addition to any other duty prescribed by law or assigned by the 
        Secretary, the Director shall--
                    ``(A) facilitate and coordinate the development of a 
                long-range strategic plan under subsection (c)(1);
                    ``(B) advise the Secretary with respect to the 
                expertise and capabilities which are available within or 
                through the national sea grant college program and 
                encourage the use of such expertise and capabilities, on 
                a cooperative or other basis, by other offices and 
                activities within the Administration, and other Federal 
                departments and agencies;
                    ``(C) advise the Secretary on the designation of sea 
                grant colleges and sea grant institutes, and, if 
                appropriate, on the termination or suspension of any 
                such designation; and
                    ``(D) encourage the establishment and growth of sea 
                grant programs, and cooperation and coordination with 
                other Federal activities in fields related to ocean, 
                coastal, and Great Lakes resources.
            ``(3) With respect to sea grant colleges and sea grant 
        institutes, the Director shall--
                    ``(A) evaluate the programs of sea grant colleges 
                and sea grant institutes, using the priorities, 
                guidelines, and qualifications established by the 
                Secretary;
                    ``(B) subject to the availability of appropriations, 
                allocate funding among sea grant colleges and sea grant 
                institutes so as to--
                          ``(i) promote healthy competition among sea 
                      grant colleges and institutes;
                          ``(ii) encourage successful implementation of 
                      sea grant programs; and
                          ``(iii) to the maximum extent consistent with 
                      other provisions of this Act, provide a stable 
                      base of funding for sea grant colleges and 
                      institutes; and
                    ``(C) ensure compliance with the guidelines for 
                merit review under subsection (c)(2).''.

SEC. 6. REPEAL OF SEA GRANT INTERNATIONAL PROGRAM.

    Section 3 of the Sea Grant Program Improvement Act of 1976 (33 
U.S.C. 1124a) is repealed.

SEC. 7. SEA GRANT COLLEGES AND SEA GRANT INSTITUTES.

    Section 207 (33 U.S.C. 1126) is amended to read as follows:

``SEC. 207. SEA GRANT COLLEGES AND SEA GRANT INSTITUTES.

    ``(a) Designation.--

[[Page 112 STAT. 25]]

            ``(1) A sea grant college or sea grant institute shall meet 
        the following qualifications--
                    ``(A) have an existing broad base of competence in 
                fields related to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes 
                resources;
                    ``(B) make a long-term commitment to the objective 
                in section 202(b), as determined by the Secretary;
                    ``(C) cooperate with other sea grant colleges and 
                institutes and other persons to solve problems or meet 
                needs relating to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes 
                resources;
                    ``(D) have received financial assistance under 
                section 205 of this title (33 U.S.C. 1124);
                    ``(E) be recognized for excellence in fields related 
                to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources (including 
                marine resources management and science), as determined 
                by the Secretary; and
                    ``(F) meet such other qualifications as the 
                Secretary, in consultation with the panel, considers 
                necessary or appropriate.
            ``(2) The Secretary may designate an institution, or an 
        association or alliance of two or more such institutions, as a 
        sea grant college if the institution, association, or alliance--
                    ``(A) meets the qualifications in paragraph (1); and
                    ``(B) maintains a program of research, advisory 
                services, training, and education in fields related to 
                ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources.
            ``(3) The Secretary may designate an institution, or an 
        association or alliance of two or more such institutions, as a 
        sea grant institute if the institution, association, or 
        alliance--
                    ``(A) meets the qualifications in paragraph (1); and
                    ``(B) maintains a program which includes, at a 
                minimum, research and advisory services.

    ``(b) Existing Designees.--Any institution, or association or 
alliance of two or more such institutions, designated as a sea grant 
college or awarded institutional program status by the Director prior to 
the date of enactment of the National Sea Grant College Program 
Reauthorization Act of 1998, shall not have to reapply for designation 
as a sea grant college or sea grant institute, respectively, after the 
date of enactment of the National Sea Grant College Program 
Reauthorization Act of 1998, if the Director determines that the 
institution, or association or alliance of institutions, meets the 
qualifications in subsection (a).
    ``(c) Suspension or Termination of Designation.--The Secretary may, 
for cause and after an opportunity for hearing, suspend or terminate any 
designation under subsection (a).
    ``(d) Duties.--Subject to any regulations prescribed or guidelines 
established by the Secretary, it shall be the responsibility of each sea 
grant college and sea grant institute--
            ``(1) to develop and implement, in consultation with the 
        Secretary and the panel, a program that is consistent with the 
        guidelines and priorities established under section 204(c); and
            ``(2) to conduct a merit review of all proposals for grants 
        and contracts to be awarded under section 205.''.

SEC. 8. SEA GRANT REVIEW PANEL.

    (a) Section 209(a) (33 U.S.C. 1128(a)) is amended by striking the 
second sentence.

[[Page 112 STAT. 26]]

    (b) Section 209(b) (33 U.S.C. 1128(b)) is amended--
            (1) by striking ``The Panel'' and inserting ``(b) Duties.--
        The panel'';
            (2) by striking ``and section 3 of the Sea Grant College 
        Program Improvement Act of 1976'' in paragraph (1); and
            (3) by striking ``regional consortia'' in paragraph (3) and 
        inserting ``institutes''.

    (c) Section 209(c) (33 U.S.C. 1128(c)) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (1) by striking ``college, sea grant 
        regional consortium, or sea grant program'' and inserting 
        ``college or sea grant institute''; and
            (2) by striking paragraph (5)(A) and inserting the 
        following:
                    ``(A) receive compensation at a rate established by 
                the Secretary, not to exceed the maximum daily rate 
                payable under section 5376 of title 5, United States 
                Code, when actually engaged in the performance of duties 
                for such panel; and''.

SEC. 9. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

    (a) Grants, Contracts, and Fellowships.--Section 212(a) (33 U.S.C. 
1131(a)) is amended to read as follows:
    ``(a) Authorization.--
            ``(1) In general.--There is authorized to be appropriated to 
        carry out this Act--
                    ``(A) $56,000,000 for fiscal year 1999;
                    ``(B) $57,000,000 for fiscal year 2000;
                    ``(C) $58,000,000 for fiscal year 2001;
                    ``(D) $59,000,000 for fiscal year 2002; and
                    ``(E) $60,000,000 for fiscal year 2003.
            ``(2) Zebra mussel and oyster research.--In addition to the 
        amount authorized for each fiscal year under paragraph (1)--
                    ``(A) up to $2,800,000 may be made available as 
                provided in section 1301(b)(4)(A) of the Nonindigenous 
                Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990 (16 
                U.S.C. 4741(b)(4)(A)) for competitive grants for 
                university research on the zebra mussel;
                    ``(B) up to $3,000,000 may be made available for 
                competitive grants for university research on oyster 
                diseases and oyster-related human health risks; and
                    ``(C) up to $3,000,000 may be made available for 
                competitive grants for university research on Pfiesteria 
                piscicida and other harmful algal blooms.''.

    (b) Limitation on Certain Funding.--Section 212(b)(1) (33 U.S.C. 
1131(b)(1)) is amended to read as follows:
    ``(b) Program Elements.--
            ``(1) Limitation.--No more than 5 percent of the lesser of--
                    ``(A) the amount authorized to be appropriated; or
                    ``(B) the amount appropriated,
        for each fiscal year under subsection (a) may be used to fund 
        the program element contained in section 204(b)(2).''.

    (c) Notice <<NOTE: 33 USC 1131 note.>> of Reprogramming.--If any 
funds authorized by this section are subject to a reprogramming action 
that requires notice to be provided to the Appropriations Committees of 
the House of Representatives and the Senate, notice of such action shall 
concurrently be provided to the Committees on Science and

[[Page 112 STAT. 27]]

Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation of the Senate.

    (d) Notice <<NOTE: 33 USC 1123 note.>> of Reorganization.--The 
Secretary of Commerce shall provide notice to the Committees on Science, 
Resources, and Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the 
Committees on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and Appropriations 
of the Senate, not later than 45 days before any major reorganization of 
any program, project, or activity of the National Sea Grant College 
Program.

SEC. <<NOTE: 15 USC 1541.>> 10. ADMINISTRATIVE LAW JUDGES.

    Notwithstanding section 559 of title 5, United States Code, with 
respect to any marine resource conservation law or regulation 
administered by the Secretary of Commerce acting through the National 
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, all adjudicatory functions which 
are required by chapter 5 of title 5 of such Code to be performed by an 
Administrative Law Judge may be performed by the United States Coast 
Guard on a reimbursable basis. Should the United States Coast Guard 
require the detail of an Administrative Law Judge to perform any of 
these functions, it may request such temporary or occasional assistance 
from the Office of Personnel Management pursuant to section 3344 of 
title 5, United States Code.

    Approved March 6, 1998.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--S. 927:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

SENATE REPORTS: No. 105-150 (Comm. on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation).
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD:
                                                        Vol. 143 (1997):
                                    Nov. 13, considered and passed 
                                        Senate.
                                                        Vol. 144 (1998):
                                    Feb. 11, considered and passed 
                                        House, amended.
                                    Feb. 12, Senate concurred in House 
                                        amendment.

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