Text: S.2750 — 106th Congress (1999-2000)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in Senate (06/19/2000)

 
[Congressional Bills 106th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[S. 2750 Introduced in Senate (IS)]







106th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                S. 2750

To direct the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, the 
Secretary of the Army, the Secretary of Agriculture, and the Secretary 
of the Interior to participate constructively in the implementation of 
  the Las Vegas Wash Wetland Restoration and Lake Mead Water Quality 
                      Improvement Project, Nevada.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                             June 19, 2000

   Mr. Reid introduced the following bill; which was read twice and 
       referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To direct the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, the 
Secretary of the Army, the Secretary of Agriculture, and the Secretary 
of the Interior to participate constructively in the implementation of 
  the Las Vegas Wash Wetland Restoration and Lake Mead Water Quality 
                      Improvement Project, Nevada.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Las Vegas Wash Wetland Restoration 
and Lake Mead Water Quality Improvement Act of 2000''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSES.

    (a) Findings.--Congress finds that--
            (1) the Las Vegas Wash is a significant ecosystem of desert 
        wetland created by treated effluent return flows, urban runoff, 
        and flood events from the Las Vegas Valley;
            (2) a healthy wetland ecosystem in the Las Vegas Wash would 
        improve water quality in the Las Vegas Bay, the Lake Mead 
        National Recreation Area, and the lower Colorado River, which 
        is critical habitat for endangered and threatened fish and 
        wildlife populations;
            (3) the Secretary of the Interior delivers municipal, 
        industrial, and agricultural water from the Colorado River to 
        millions of people in Nevada, Arizona, and California;
            (4) a significant concern relating to water quality in Lake 
        Mead is the transmission of contaminants to the Colorado River 
        through the Las Vegas Wash from shallow ground water seepage 
        originating at an industrial complex located in the southeast 
        part of the Las Vegas Valley, Nevada;
            (5) the industrial complex was constructed by the Federal 
        Government during World War II to manufacture products required 
        by the Department of Defense, including perchlorate, which is 
        an essential component of rocket fuel used exclusively by the 
        Federal Government;
            (6) over the past 20 years the Las Vegas Wash wetland has 
        been significantly eroded and deteriorated by flash floods, 
        increasing treated effluent flows, urban runoff, and polluted 
        shallow ground water seepage;
            (7) the loss of the Las Vegas Wash wetland is having an 
        adverse impact on wildlife habitat;
            (8) the Las Vegas Wash wetland offers a unique opportunity 
        to experience a wetland environment providing educational, 
        cultural, environmental, and recreation benefits to the 
        community of southern Nevada;
            (9) as recommended by a citizens' water quality advisory 
        committee in 1998, the Las Vegas Wash Coordination Committee, 
        including Federal, State, and local agencies, was formed to 
        establish a comprehensive adaptive management plan for the Las 
        Vegas Wash wetland;
            (10) from 1998 to 1999, the Committee engaged in an 
        extensive public process to evaluate the multifaceted 
        challenges associated with the restoration of the Las Vegas 
        Wash wetland;
            (11) in October 1999, the Committee completed and initiated 
        public comment on a comprehensive adaptive management plan;
            (12) in January 2000, the adaptive management plan was 
        approved by the Board of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, 
        which is the coordinating agency for the Committee; and
            (13) the adaptive management plan calls for a partnership 
        among Federal, State, and local agencies with an interest in 
        the Las Vegas Wash wetland.
    (b) Purposes.--The purposes of this Act are--
            (1) to recognize the importance of the restoration of the 
        Las Vegas Wash wetland to water quality in the Colorado River 
        and a desert wetland ecosystem;
            (2) to direct the affected Federal agencies to participate 
        constructively in the implementation of the Las Vegas Wash 
        Wetland Restoration and Lake Mead Water Quality Improvement 
        Project under the comprehensive adaptive management plan; and
            (3) to authorize such sums as are necessary for the 
        affected Federal agencies to carry out specific tasks required 
        by the Project in partnership with the authority and other 
        State and local agencies involved in the Committee.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
            (1) Authority.--The term ``Authority'' means the Southern 
        Nevada Water Authority, organized under the law of the State of 
        Nevada.
            (2) Committee.--The term ``Committee'' means the 28-member 
        Las Vegas Wash Coordination Committee, including 
        representatives of--
                    (A) the United States Fish and Wildlife Service;
                    (B) the Army Corps of Engineers;
                    (C) the Environmental Protection Agency;
                    (D) the National Park Service;
                    (E) the Bureau of Reclamation;
                    (F) the Natural Resources Conservation Service;
                    (G) the Southern Nevada Water Authority;
                    (H) the Nevada Division of Environmental 
                Protection, Clark County, Nevada (including the Clark 
                County Department of Parks and Recreation);
                    (I) the Clark County Sanitation District;
                    (J) the cities of Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, and 
                Henderson, Nevada;
                    (K) the Clark County Regional Flood Control 
                District;
                    (L) other Federal, State, and local agencies;
                    (M) environmental groups; and
                    (N) private citizens.
            (3) Project.--
                    (A) In general.--The term ``Project'' means the Las 
                Vegas Wash Wetlands Restoration and Lake Mead Water 
                Quality Improvement Project.
                    (B) Inclusions.--The term ``Project'' includes the 
                programs, features, components, projects, and 
                activities identified in the Comprehensive Adaptive 
                Management Plan for the Las Vegas Wash developed by the 
                Committee and dated January 20, 2000.

SEC. 4. PARTICIPATION IN THE PROJECT.

    (a) In General.--In addition to the authorities under other Federal 
law, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, the 
Secretary of the Army, the Secretary of Agriculture, and the Secretary 
of the Interior may participate in the continued development and 
implementation of the Project.
    (b) Federal Assistance.--The Administrator of the Environmental 
Protection Agency, the Secretary of the Army, and the Secretary of the 
Interior shall provide such research, technical assistance, interagency 
coordination, and funding for--
            (1) the collection and modeling of scientific and 
        hydrologic data; and
            (2) the design and construction of--
                    (A) erosion control facilities;
                    (B) wetland restoration features;
                    (C) ground water interdiction facilities;
                    (D) treated effluent transport diffusion and reuse 
                features;
                    (E) water quality improvement facilities; and
                    (F) other project features developed under the Las 
                Vegas Wash Comprehensive Adaptive Management Plan.
    (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated such sums as are necessary to carry out this Act.
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