S.2567 - Conservation and Reinvestment Act of 2000106th Congress (1999-2000)
|Sponsor:||Sen. Boxer, Barbara [D-CA] (Introduced 05/16/2000)|
|Latest Action:||05/17/2000 Read the second time. Placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders. Calendar No. 553. (All Actions)|
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Subject — Policy Area:
- Public Lands and Natural Resources
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Summary: S.2567 — 106th Congress (1999-2000)All Bill Information (Except Text)
Conservation and Reinvestment Act of 2000 - Requires: (1) Governors of each State receiving monies from the Conservation and Reinvestment Act Fund (established under this Act) to report on June 15 of each year to the Secretaries of the Interior or of Agriculture, as appropriate, accounting for the money received for the previous fiscal year, including the funded projects and activities; and (2) the Secretary of the Interior to report annually to Congress on monies the Departments of the Interior and of Agriculture have spent out of the Fund, including a summary of such Governors' reports.
Introduced in Senate (05/16/2000)
(Sec. 5) Establishes the Conservation and Reinvestment Act Fund (CRAF). Requires the Secretary of the Treasury to deposit into CRAF certain Outer Continental Shelf revenues, undisbursed amounts under title I of this Act, and certain interest earned on CRAF investments.
Transfers all amounts deposited into the CRAF as follows: (1) to the Secretary of the Interior for payment of $1 billion to States for impact assistance and coastal conservation, $125 million for the Urban Park and Recreation Recovery Act of 1978, $100 million for the National Historic Preservation Act, and $50 million to develop and implement Endangered and Threatened Species Recovery Agreements; (2) to the Secretaries of the Interior and of Agriculture for payment of $200 million for Federal and Indian land restoration; (3) to the Secretary of Agriculture $100 million to carry out the farmland protection program under the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996, and the Urban and Community Forestry Assistance Program and the Forest Legacy Program established under the Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act of 1978; (4) to the Land and Water Conservation Fund in the amount of $900 million; and (5) to the Federal Aid to Wildlife Restoration Fund (FAWRF) established under the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act in the amount of $350 million. Provides that any shortfalls less than $2.825 billion in a fiscal year, after FY 2000, proportionally reduce such sums for that fiscal year.
Expresses the intent of Congress that amounts made available under this Act are to supplement, and not to detract from, annual appropriations for the National Park Service.
Prohibits the Secretary of the Treasury from transferring funds to the CRAF under this Act during any fiscal year unless: (1) the Director of the Congressional Budget Office has certified that the House of Representatives and the Senate have approved legislation that ensures that a sufficient portion of the on-budget surplus is reserved for debt retirement by FY 2013, and that there is not an on-budget deficit for that fiscal year; and (2) the Boards of Trustees of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund, of the Federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund, and of the Federal Hospital Insurance Trust Fund have certified that outlays from such Funds are not anticipated to exceed revenues during any of the next five fiscal years.
(Sec. 6) Limits the amount available for administrative expenses to two percent. Provides that nothing in this Act shall affect the prohibition contained in the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act (as amended by this Act) that bars the use of funds transferred to the FAWRF by this Act for administrative or execution of program expenses.
(Sec. 8) States that it is the intent of Congress that States not use this Act as an opportunity to reduce State or local resources for the programs funded by this Act. Prohibits a State or local government from receiving funds under this Act during any fiscal year: (1) when its expenditures of non-Federal funds for recurrent expenditures for programs for which such funding is provided will be less than its expenditures were for such programs during the preceding fiscal year; or (2) for a program unless the Secretary of the Interior is satisfied that such a grant will be used to supplement and, to the extent practicable, increase the level of State, local, or other non-Federal funds available for such program. Exempts a State or local government from such prohibition if the Secretary determines that a reduction in expenditures is: (1) attributable to a non-selective reduction in the expenditures in the programs of all executive branch agencies of such entity; or (2) a result of reductions in State or local revenue as a result of a downturn in the economy. Treats all funds received by a State or local government under this Act as Federal funds for purposes of compliance with provisions in effect under other law requiring that non-Federal funds be used to provide a portion of the funding for any program or project.
(Sec. 10) Prohibits: (1) the taking of private property in whole or in part, without just compensation; and (2) Federal agencies, using funds appropriated by this Act, from applying any regulation on any lands until the lands or water or an interest therein is acquired, unless authorized to do so by another Act of Congress.
(Sec. 11) Requires the Secretary of the Interior to design a standardized sign and require its installation at sites receiving funds under this Act.
Title I: Impact Assistance and Coastal Conservation - Directs the Secretary of the Interior to allocate such transferred CRAF payments to coastal States for impact assistance and coastal conservation only if such States have: (1) a Secretary-approved Coastal State Conservation and Impact Assistance Plan; (2) agreed to provide specified reports; and (3) certain necessary fiscal control and fund accounting procedures.
(Sec. 101) Sets forth the formula for allocating such funds to coastal States and coastal political subdivisions.
(Sec. 102) Requires the development and submission of a Coastal State Conservation and Impact Assistance Plan by each coastal State seeking to receive grants under this title (and in the case of a producing State, the Governor) to incorporate the plans of the coastal political subdivisions into the Statewide plan for transmittal to the Secretary of the Interior for approval or disapproval before the disbursement of CRAF funds. Specifies authorized uses of the CRAF funds.
Title II: Land and Water Conservation Fund Revitalization - Amends the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965 to provide that all CRAF funds transferred to the Land and Water Conservation Fund shall be covered into the Fund.
(Sec. 203) Makes $900 million available each fiscal year after FY 2001 for expenditure without further appropriation, to be allocated as follows: (1) 50 percent for Federal purposes; and (2) 50 percent for State grants.
(Sec. 205) Prohibits the obligation or expenditure of the Federal portion of such funds for any land or water interest acquisition except those specified and approved by Congress in the appropriate appropriations Act. Prescribes: (1) a procedure for preparing and transmitting to Congress of a list of proposed Federal acquisitions; and (2) notification to specified officials of affected areas with respect to such proposed acquisitions.
(Sec. 206) Revises the formula used to allocate amounts made available for State purposes from the Fund each fiscal year. Prohibits such funds from being apportioned to any State that has not established a dedicated State land acquisition fund that is funded through the State's budget process (unfunded State). Requires reapportionment of such funds to other States. Makes all federally recognized Indian tribes, or in the case of Alaska, Native Corporations eligible to receive shares of such apportionment in accordance with a competitive grant program established by the Secretary of the Interior. Requires each State, with an exception, to make available as grants to local governments at least 50 percent of its annual apportionment or an equivalent amount made available from other sources.
Makes available without further appropriation to the Secretary of the Interior certain amounts in addition to CRAF funds for distribution among the several States under a competitive grant program for State projects of national or regional significance involving one or more States. Limits the award of such grants to projects that would conserve open space and either conserve wildlife habitat, protect water quality, or otherwise enhance the environment, or that would protect areas that have historic or cultural value.
(Sec. 207) Revises the requirement that a State have a comprehensive statewide outdoor recreation plan as a prerequisite to consideration by the Secretary of the Interior of financial assistance for acquisition or development projects. Allows each State to define its own priorities and criteria for selection of outdoor conservation and recreation acquisition and development projects eligible for grants under this Act if the priorities and criteria defined are consistent with the purposes of this Act, the State provides for public involvement in this process, and publishes an accurate and current State Action Agenda for Community Conservation and Recreation, within five years after enactment of this Act, indicating the needs it has identified and the priorities and criteria it has established. Allows an existing Comprehensive State Plan to remain in effect until the appropriate State adopts a State Action Agenda.
(Sec. 209) Requires the Secretary to approve, subject to certain conditions, the conversion of property (other than for public outdoor recreation use) acquired or developed with assistance under the Act only if the State demonstrates no prudent or feasible alternative exists. Exempts from such requirement those properties that no longer meet the criteria within the State Plan or Agenda as an outdoor conservation and recreation facility due to changes in demographics, or that must be abandoned because of environmental contamination which endangers public health and safety.
(Sec. 210) Provides that nothing in this title shall affect any State or Federal water law or an interstate compact governing water, alter any allocations of water rights, or create any new water rights.
(Sec. 211) Requires the Secretaries of the Interior and of Agriculture to jointly develop and issue a plan for acquisition and disposal of lands in the State of Montana that will result in consolidation of private and Federal public lands.
Title III: Wildlife Conservation and Restoration - Amends the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act (FAWRA) to require CRAF funds transferred for FAWRA purposes to be deposited in a new subaccount in the FAWRF, to be made available without further appropriation, for apportionment in each fiscal year for State wildlife conservation and restoration programs.
(Sec. 304) Sets forth requirements for: (1) apportionment of such subaccount funds; (2) applications for approval of, and development grants for, State wildlife conservation and restoration programs; and (3) coordination. Prohibits such funds from being used for expenses incurred in the administration and execution of programs. Limits to ten percent the use of such funds for wildlife-associated recreation.
(Sec. 305) Allows the subaccount funds to be used for a wildlife conservation education program. Exempts education efforts, projects, or programs that promote or encourage opposition to the regulated taking of wildlife.
(Sec. 306) Prohibits a State from receiving FAWRA matching funds if it diverts any funds from wildlife conservation purposes.
Title IV: Urban Park and Recreation Recovery Program Amendments - Amends the Urban Park and Recreation Recovery Act of 1978 to make transferred CRAF funds available to the Secretary of the Interior, without further appropriation, to assist local governments in improving their park and recreation systems. Sets forth limits on the use of such funds.
(Sec. 404) Provides for the development of new recreation areas and facilities (including the acquisition of lands for such development) under the urban park and recreation recovery program.
(Sec. 406) Revises requirements for: (1) Federal assistance grant eligibility; (2) matching grants to local governments for rehabilitation, development, acquisition, and innovation purposes; (3) local park and recreation recovery action programs; (4) State action incentives; and (5) conversion of recreation property for any other purposes other than public recreation purposes.
(Sec. 411) Repeals sunset provisions and congressional reporting requirements with respect to: (1) the impact of the urban park and recreation recovery program; and (2) the annual achievements of the innovation grant program.
Title V: Historic Preservation Fund - Amends the National Historic Preservation Act to provide that amounts transferred from the CRAF each fiscal year shall be deposited into the Historic Preservation Fund to be available without further appropriation to carry out the Act.
(Sec. 501) Requires at least one half of the funds obligated or expended each fiscal year under this Act to be used for preservation projects on historic properties (giving priority to the preservation of endangered historic properties).
(Sec. 502) Authorizes a State to provide financial assistance to the management entity for any national heritage area or national heritage corridor to support cooperative historic preservation planning and development.
Title VI: Federal and Indian Lands Restoration - Makes CRAF funds transferred to the Secretaries of the Interior and of Agriculture available to be used as a dedicated source of funding for a coordinated program on Federal and Indian lands to restore degraded lands, protect resources that are threatened with degradation, and protect public health and safety. Allocates: (1) 60 percent to the Secretary of the Interior for lands within the National Park System, National Wildlife Refuge System, and public lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management; (2) 30 percent to the Secretary of Agriculture for lands within the National Forest System; and (3) ten percent to the Secretary of the Interior for competitive grants to qualified Indian tribes (giving priority to projects based upon the protection of significant resources, the severity of damages or threats to resources, and the protection of public health).
(Sec. 603) Requires the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture to: (1) each establish priority lists for the use of funds (giving priority to projects based upon the protection of significant resources, the severity of damages or threats to resources, and the protection of public health or safety); and (2) jointly establish a coordinated program for tracking the progress of activities carried out with amounts made available by this title and determining the extent to which demonstrable results are being achieved.
Title VII: Farmland Protection Program and Endangered and Threatened Species Recovery - Subtitle A: Farmland Protection Program - Amends the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 to revise requirements for the farmland protection program. Repeals the mandate that the Secretary purchase conservation easements or other interests in lands with prime, unique, or other productive soil subject to a pending offer from a State or local government. Authorizes the Secretary, instead, to provide matching grants, under specified conditions, to State or local governments, Indian tribes, or certain private organizations to provide the Federal share of up to 50 percent of the total cost of purchasing permanent conservation easements in such lands or conservation easements or other interests in such lands when they are subject to a pending offer from a State or local government.
(Sec. 702) Provides that CRAF funds transferred to the Secretary under this Act in a fiscal year shall be available to the Secretary, without further appropriation, to carry out the programs specified in section five of this Act.
Subtitle B: Endangered and Threatened Species Recovery - Makes CRAF funds transferred from the CRAF for this title in a fiscal year available to the Secretary of the Interior without further appropriation, in that fiscal year, to provide financial assistance to persons for development and implementation of Endangered and Threatened Species Recovery Agreements entered into under this title. Requires the Secretary to give priority to the development and implementation of Agreements that: (1) implement actions identified under recovery plans approved by the Secretary; (2) have the greatest potential for contributing to the recovery of an endangered or threatened species; and (3) require use of the assistance on land owned by a small landowner.
(Sec. 713) Prohibits the Secretary from providing financial assistance for any action that is required by a permit or an incidental take statement issued under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 or that is otherwise required under Federal law.
(Sec. 714) Authorizes the Secretary to enter into such Agreements and sets forth Agreement requirements, including: (1) requiring activities not otherwise mandated by law that contribute to species recovery; and (2) specifying species recovery goals. Requires the Secretary to review Agreements in compliance, periodically monitor the implementation of each Agreement, and disburse financial assistance to implement the Agreement.
Title VIII: Protection of Social Security and Medicare Benefits - Prohibits funds from being expended under this Act if such expenditure diminishes benefit obligations of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund, the Federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund, the Hospital Insurance Trust Fund, or the Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Fund.