Text: H.R.5535 — 107th Congress (2001-2002)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (10/02/2002)

 
[Congressional Bills 107th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 5535 Introduced in House (IH)]







107th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                H. R. 5535

To expand the boundaries of the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge Complex 
        and of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            October 2, 2002

Ms. Kaptur (for herself, Mr. Dingell, Mr. Gilchrest, and Mr. Underwood) 
 introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on 
                               Resources

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To expand the boundaries of the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge Complex 
        and of the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge.

    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 ``Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge 
Complex Expansion and Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge 
Expansion Act''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

     The Congress finds the following:
            (1) The western basin of Lake Erie, as part of the Great 
        Lakes ecosystem, the largest freshwater ecosystem on the face 
        of the Earth, is vitally important to the economic and 
        environmental future of the United States.
            (2) Over the past three decades, the citizens and 
        governmental institutions of both the United States and Canada 
        have devoted increasing attention and resources to the 
        restoration of the water quality and fisheries of the Great 
        Lakes, including the western basin. This increased awareness 
        has been accompanied by a gradual shift to a holistic 
        ``ecosystem approach'' that highlights a growing recognition 
        that shoreline areas--the nearshore terrestrial ecosystems--are 
        an integral part of the western basin and the Great Lakes 
        ecosystem as a whole.
            (3) The Great Lakes account for more than 90 percent of the 
        surface freshwater in the nation. The western basin receives 
        approximately 90 percent of its flow from the Detroit River and 
        only approximately 10 percent from tributaries.
            (4) The western basin of Lake Erie is an important 
        ecosystem that includes a number of distinct islands, channels, 
        rivers, and shoals that support dense populations of fish, 
        wildlife, and aquatic plants.
            (5) The coastal wetlands of Lake Erie support the largest 
        diversity of plant and wildlife species in the Great Lakes. The 
        moderate climate of Lake Erie and its more southern latitude 
        allow for many species that are not found in or along the 
        northern Great Lakes. More than 300 species of plants, 
        including 37 significant species, have been identified in the 
        aquatic and wetland habitats of the western basin.
            (6) The shallow western basin of Lake Erie, from the Lower 
        Detroit River to Sandusky Bay, is home to the largest 
        concentration of marshes in Lake Erie, including Mouille, 
        Metzger, and Magee marshes, the Maumee Bay wetland complex, the 
        wetland complexes flanking Locust Point, and the wetlands in 
        Sandusky Bay. The larger United States islands in western Lake 
        Erie have wetlands in their small embayments.
            (7) The wetlands in the western basin of Lake Erie comprise 
        as some of the most important waterfowl habitat in the Great 
        Lakes. Waterfowl, wading birds, shore birds, gulls and terns, 
        raptors, and perching birds all use the western basin wetlands 
        for migration, nesting, and feeding. Hundreds of thousands of 
        diving ducks stop to rest in the Lake Erie area on their fall 
        migration from Canada to the east and south. The wetlands of 
        the western basin of Lake Erie provide a major stopover for 
        ducks such as migrating bufflehead, common goldeneye, common 
        mergansers, and ruddy duck.
            (8) The international importance of Lake Erie is manifested 
        in the United States congressional designation of the Ottawa 
        and Cedar Point National Wildlife Refuges.
            (9) Lake Erie has an international reputation for walleye, 
        perch, and bass fishing, recreational boating, birding, 
        photography, and duck hunting. On an economic basis, Lake Erie 
        tourism accounts for an estimated $1,500,000,000 in retail 
        sales and more than 50,000 jobs.
            (10) Many of the 417,000 boats that are registered in Ohio 
        are used in the western basin of Lake Erie, in part to fish for 
        the estimated 10,000,000 walleye that migrate from other areas 
        of the lake to spawn. This internationally renowned walleye 
        fishery drives much of Ohio's $2,000,000,000 sport fishing 
        industry.
            (11) Coastal wetlands in the western basin of Lake Erie 
        have been subjected to intense pressure for 150 years. Prior to 
        1850, the western basin was part of an extensive coastal marsh 
        and swamp system of approximately 122,000 hectares that 
        comprised a portion of the Great Black Swamp. By 1951, only 
        12,407 wetland hectares remained in the western basin. Half of 
        that acreage was destroyed between 1972 and 1987. Therefore, 
        today only approximately 5,000 hectares remain. Along the 
        Michigan shoreline, coastal wetlands were reduced by 62 percent 
        between 1916 and the early 1970s. The development of the city 
        of Monroe, Michigan, has had a particularly significant impact 
        on the coastal wetlands at the mouth of the Raisin River: only 
        approximately 100 hectares remain physically unaltered today in 
        an area where 70 years ago marshes were 10 times more 
        extensive. In addition to the actual loss of coastal wetland 
        acreage along the shores of Lake Erie, the quality of many 
        remaining diked wetlands has been degraded by numerous 
        stressors, especially excessive loadings of sediments and 
        nutrients, contaminants, shoreline modification, exotic 
        species, and the diking of wetlands. Protective peninsula beach 
        systems, such as the former Bay Point and Woodtick, at the 
        border of Ohio and Michigan near the mouth of the Ottawa River 
        and Maumee Bay, have been eroded over the years, exacerbating 
        erosion along the shorelines and impacting the breeding and 
        spawning grounds.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

     For purposes of this Act:
            (1) The term ``Refuge Complex'' means the Ottawa National 
        Wildlife Refuge Complex and the lands and waters therein, as 
        described in the document entitled ``The Comprehensive 
        Conservation Plan for the Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge 
        Complex'' and dated September 22, 2000, including Ottawa 
        National Wildlife Refuge, West Sister Island National Wildlife 
        Refuge, and Cedar Point National Wildlife Refuge.
            (2) The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of the 
        Interior.
            (3) The term ``International Refuge'' means the Detroit 
        River International Wildlife Refuge established by the Detroit 
        River International Wildlife Refuge Establishment Act (Public 
        Law 107-91).

SEC. 4. EXPANSION OF BOUNDARIES.

    (a) Refuge Complex Boundaries.--
            (1) Expansion.--The boundaries of the Refuge Complex are 
        expanded to include lands and waters in the State of Ohio from 
        the eastern boundary of Maumee Bay State Park to the eastern 
        boundary of the Darby Unit, including the Bass Island 
        archipelago, as depicted on the map entitled ``Ottawa National 
        Wildlife Refuge Complex Expansion and Detroit River 
        International Wildlife Refuge Expansion Act'', dated September 
        6, 2002.
            (2) Boundary revisions.--The Secretary may make such 
        revisions to the boundaries of the Refuge Complex as may be 
        appropriate to carry out the purposes of the Refuge Complex or 
        to facilitate the acquisition of property within the Refuge 
        Complex.
    (b) International Refuge Boundaries.--The southern boundary of the 
International Refuge is extended south to include additional lands and 
waters in the State of Michigan east of Interstate Highway 75 from the 
southern boundary of Sterling State Park to the Ohio State boundary, as 
depicted on the map referred to in subsection (a)(1).
    (c) Availability of Map.--The Secretary shall keep the map referred 
to in subsection (a)(1) available for inspection in appropriate offices 
of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.

SEC. 5. ACQUISITION AND TRANSFER OF LANDS FOR REFUGE COMPLEX.

    (a) Acquisitions.--The Secretary may acquire by donation, purchase 
with donated or appropriated funds, or exchange the lands and waters, 
or interests therein (including conservation easements), within the 
boundaries of the Refuge Complex as expanded by this title. No such 
lands, waters, or interests therein may be acquired without the consent 
of the owner thereof.
    (b) Transfers From Other Agencies.--Any Federal property located 
within the boundaries of the Refuge Complex, as expanded by this title, 
that is under the administrative jurisdiction of a department or agency 
of the United States other than the Department of the Interior may, 
with the concurrence of the head of administering department or agency, 
be transferred without consideration to the administrative jurisdiction 
of the Secretary for the purposes of this title.

SEC. 6. ADMINISTRATION OF REFUGE COMPLEX.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary shall administer all federally owned 
lands, waters, and interests therein that are within the boundaries of 
the Refuge Complex, as expanded by this title, in accordance with the 
National Wildlife Refuge System Administration Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 
668dd et seq.) and this title. The Secretary may use such additional 
statutory authority as may be available for the conservation of fish 
and wildlife, and the provision of fish and wildlife dependent 
recreational opportunities as the Secretary considers appropriate to 
implement this title.
    (b) Additional Purposes.--In addition to the purposes of the Refuge 
Complex under other laws, regulations, executive orders, and 
comprehensive conservation plans, the Refuge Complex shall be managed 
for the following purposes:
            (1) To strengthen and complement existing resource 
        management, conservation, and education programs and activities 
        at the Refuge Complex in a manner consistent with the primary 
        purpose of the Refuge Complex to provide major resting, 
        feeding, and wintering habitats for migratory birds and other 
        wildlife, and to enhance national resource conservation and 
        management in the western basin of Lake Erie.
            (2) To conserve, enhance, and restore the native aquatic 
        and terrestrial community characteristics of the western basin 
        of Lake Erie (including associated fish, wildlife, and plant 
        species), both in the United States and Canada in partnership 
        with nongovernmental and private organizations, as well as 
        private individuals dedicated to habitat enhancement.
            (3) To facilitate partnerships among the United States Fish 
        and Wildlife Service, Canadian national and provincial 
        authorities, State and local governments, local communities in 
        the United States and in Canada, conservation organizations, 
        and other non-Federal entities to promote public awareness of 
        the resources of the western basin of Lake Erie.
            (4) To advance the collective goals and priorities 
        established in the ``Great Lakes Strategy 2002--A Plan for the 
        New Millennium'', by the United States Policy Committee 
        comprised of various Federal agencies, including the United 
        States Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Oceanic and 
        Atmospheric Administration, the United States Geological 
        Survey, the Forest Service, and the Great Lakes Fishery 
        Commission, as well as the State governments and tribal 
        governments in the Great Lakes. These goals, broadly stated, 
        include working together to protect and restore the chemical, 
        physical, and biological integrity of the Great Lakes basin 
        ecosystem.
    (c) Priority Uses.--In providing opportunities for compatible fish 
and wildlife dependent recreation, the Secretary, in accordance with 
paragraphs (3) and (4) of section 4(a) of the National Wildlife Refuge 
System Administration Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 668dd(a)), shall ensure 
that hunting, fishing, wildlife observation and photography, and 
environmental education and interpretation are the priority public uses 
of the Refuge Complex.
    (d) Cooperative Agreements Regarding Non-Federal Lands.--The 
Secretary may enter into cooperative agreements with the State of Ohio 
or the State of Michigan, or any political subdivision thereof, and 
with any other person or entity for the management in a manner 
consistent with this title of lands that are owned by such State, 
subdivision, or other person or entity and located within the 
boundaries of the Refuge Complex and to promote public awareness of the 
resources of the western basin of Lake Erie and encourage public 
participation in the conservation of those resources.
    (e) Use of Existing Greenway Authority.--The Secretary shall 
encourage the State of Ohio to use existing authorities under the 
Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century to provide funding for 
acquisition and development of trails within the boundaries of the 
Refuge Complex.

SEC. 7. STUDY OF ASSOCIATED AREA.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary, acting through the Director of the 
United States Fish and Wildlife Service, shall conduct a study of fish 
and wildlife habitat and aquatic and terrestrial communities of the 2 
dredge spoil disposal sites referred to by the Toledo-Lucas County Port 
Authority as Port Authority Facility Number Three and Grassy Island, 
located within Toledo Harbor near the mouth of the Maumee River.
    (b) Report.--Not later than 18 months after the date of the 
enactment of the Act, the Secretary shall complete such study and 
submit a report containing the results thereof to the Congress.

SEC. 8. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

     There are authorized to be appropriated to the Department of the 
Interior--
            (1) such sums as may be necessary for the acquisition of 
        lands and waters within the Refuge Complex;
            (2) such sums as may be necessary for the development, 
        operation, and maintenance of the Refuge Complex; and
            (3) such sums as may be necessary to carry out the study 
        under section 7.
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