Text: H.R.3245 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (10/02/2003)

 
[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 3245 Introduced in House (IH)]






108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 3245

   To promote the development of the commercial space transportation 
 industry, to authorize appropriations for the Office of the Associate 
    Administrator for Commercial Space Transportation, to authorize 
    appropriations for the Office of Space Commerce, and for other 
                               purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            October 2, 2003

Mr. Rohrabacher (for himself, Mr. Gordon, and Mr. Hall) introduced the 
     following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Science

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
   To promote the development of the commercial space transportation 
 industry, to authorize appropriations for the Office of the Associate 
    Administrator for Commercial Space Transportation, to authorize 
    appropriations for the Office of Space Commerce, and for other 
                               purposes.

    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 ``Commercial Space Act of 2003''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds that--
            (1) a prolonged and severe downturn in the market for 
        commercial space launches has resulted in--
                    (A) a significant reduction in the United States 
                global market share in orbital space launches;
                    (B) a severe decrease in the number of Government-
                licensed orbital launches; and
                    (C) a commercial space transportation industry 
                dependent upon Government business opportunities;
            (2) the continuous reduction of cost and improvement in 
        safety and reliability of commercial space transportation 
        capabilities is a necessary ingredient to achieving most United 
        States space goals;
            (3) the opening of outer space to the American people and 
        their economic, scientific, and cultural enterprises is a 
        priority goal which should guide Federal space investments, 
        policy development, and regulatory action;
            (4) despite a weak United States launch industry, recent 
        industrial and technical developments indicate that commercial 
        suborbital human spaceflight vehicles are under active 
        development in both the United States and other nations, and 
        greater private investment in these development efforts will 
        promote greater innovation and competitiveness for the United 
        States commercial space transportation industry as a whole;
            (5) space transportation is not without risks;
            (6) a critical area of responsibility for the Office of the 
        Associate Administrator for Commercial Space Transportation is 
        to ensure that the Federal regulation of this new commercial 
        suborbital human spaceflight industry should focus on 
        protecting the safety of the general, uninvolved public, while 
        allowing involved persons to assume risks which are inherent to 
        human spaceflight activities;
            (7) enactment of a 3-year extension of the excess third 
        party claims payment provision of chapter 701 of title 49, 
        United States Code (Commercial Space Launch Activities) is 
        necessary to provide an appropriate period to evaluate 
        recommended changes to the Government's commercial space launch 
        indemnification regime;
            (8) the Secretary of Transportation should establish 
        regulatory guidelines that foster an efficient and cost-
        effective process for ensuring safe commercial space launch 
        operations at the Nation's launch ranges and bases; and
            (9) the public interest is served by creating a clear legal 
        and regulatory regime for commercial space transportation, 
        including an unambiguous delineation of regulatory roles and 
        responsibilities.

SEC. 3. AMENDMENTS.

    (a) Authorization of Appropriations for Office of Commercial Space 
Transportation.--Section 70119 of title 49, United States Code, is 
amended by striking paragraphs (1) and (2) and inserting the following:
            ``(1) $11,523,000 for fiscal year 2004; and
            ``(2) $11,000,000 for fiscal year 2005.''.
    (b) Findings.--Section 70101(a) of title 49, United States Code, is 
amended--
            (1) in paragraph (3), by inserting ``human spaceflight,'' 
        after ``research,''; and
            (2) in paragraph (4), by striking ``satellite'' and 
        inserting ``space'', and by striking ``services now available 
        from'' and inserting ``capabilities of''.
    (c) Definitions.--Section 70102 of title 49, United States Code, is 
amended--
            (1) by redesignating paragraphs (2) through (16) as 
        paragraphs (3), (4), (5), (6), (7), (8), (9), (10), (11), (12), 
        (13), (14), (16), (19), and (20), respectively;
            (2) by inserting after paragraph (1) the following new 
        paragraph:
            ``(2) `crew' means an individual or individuals carried 
        within a launch or reentry vehicle who performs a function 
        necessary for the protection of public safety. '';
            (3) in paragraph (9), as so redesignated by paragraph (1) 
        of this subsection--
                    (A) by inserting ``an individual or'' after 
                ``means'';
                    (B) by inserting ``or return from'' after ``to 
                place in''; and
                    (C) by striking ``that object'' and inserting 
                ``that individual or object'';
            (4) by inserting after paragraph (14), as so redesignated 
        by paragraph (1) of this subsection, the following new 
        paragraph:
            ``(15) `spaceflight participant' means an individual who is 
        not crew carried within a launch or reentry vehicle during a 
        launch or reentry.'';
            (5) by inserting after paragraph (16), as so redesignated 
        by paragraph (1) of this subsection, the following new 
        paragraphs:
            ``(17) `suborbital rocket' means a rocket-propelled vehicle 
        intended for flight on a suborbital trajectory whose thrust is 
        greater than its lift for the majority of the powered portion 
        of its flight.
            ``(18) `suborbital trajectory' means the intentional flight 
        path of a launch vehicle, reentry vehicle, or any portion 
        thereof, whose vacuum instantaneous impact point does not leave 
        the surface of the Earth.''; and
            (6) in paragraph (19), as so redesignated by paragraph (1) 
        of this subsection--
                    (A) by striking ``or'' at the end of subparagraph 
                (C);
                    (B) by striking the period at the end of 
                subparagraph (D) and inserting ``; and''; and
                    (C) by adding at the end the following new 
                subparagraph:
                    ``(E) crew or spaceflight participants.''.
    (d) Commercial Human Spaceflight.--(1) Section 70104 of title 49, 
United States Code, is amended--
            (A) by redesignating subsection (c) as subsection (d); and
            (B) by inserting after subsection (b) the following new 
        subsection:
    ``(c) Compliance With Spaceflight Participant Requirements.--The 
holder of a license under this chapter may launch or reenter a 
spaceflight participant only if--
            ``(1) the spaceflight participant has received training and 
        met medical or other standards specified in the license;
            ``(2) the spaceflight participant is informed of the safety 
        record of the launch or reentry vehicle type; and
            ``(3) the launch or reentry vehicle is marked in a manner 
        specified by the Secretary of Transportation which identifies 
        it as a launch or reentry vehicle rather than an aircraft.''.
    (2) Section 70112(b)(1) of title 49, United States Code, is amended 
by striking ``property damage or loss it sustains, or for personal 
injury to, death of, or property damage or loss sustained by its own 
employees'' and inserting ``personal injury, death, property damage, or 
loss it sustains, and for personal injury to, death of, or property 
damage or loss sustained by its own employees,''.

SEC. 4. REGULATORY FRAMEWORK.

    The Secretary of Transportation shall take appropriate efforts, 
including realignment of personnel and resources, to create a 
streamlined, cost-effective, and enabling regulatory framework for the 
United States commercial human spaceflight industry. The Secretary of 
Transportation shall clearly distinguish the Department's regulation of 
air commerce from its regulation of commercial human spaceflight, and 
focus the Department's regulation of commercial human spaceflight 
activities on protecting the safety of the general public, while 
allowing spaceflight participants who have been trained and meet 
license-specific standards to assume an informed level of risk. Not 
later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
Secretary of Transportation shall transmit to the Congress a report on 
the progress made in implementing this section.

SEC. 5. COMMERCIAL SPACE TRANSPORTATION INDEMNIFICATION EXTENSION.

    Section 70113(f) of title 49, United States Code, is amended by 
striking ``December 31, 2004'' and inserting ``December 31, 2007''.

SEC. 6. LIABILITY REGIME FOR COMMERCIAL SPACE TRANSPORTATION.

    (a) Applications.--Not later than 60 days after the date of the 
enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Transportation shall enter into 
an appropriate arrangement with the National Academy of Public 
Administration to conduct a study on the liability risk-sharing regime 
in the United States for commercial space transportation. The study 
shall recommend modifications to the liability regime and 
characterization of actions required to implement those modifications. 
The study shall analyze the adequacy, propriety, and effectiveness of, 
and the need for, the current liability risk-sharing regime. The study 
shall specifically consider--
            (1) other countries' regimes;
            (2) the use of the designation of ``ultra hazardous'' for 
        space transportation activities;
            (3) relevant international treaties;
            (4) impacts of reusable launch vehicles and spaceports; and
            (5) the feasibility of airline-like liability regimes.
The study shall use a clearly described, analytical methodology to 
specify the factors used in evaluating the current regime and 
alternative approaches to the current regime. Estimates of impacts 
shall be quantified where possible.
    (b) Completion Date.--The results of the study described in 
subsection (a) shall be transmitted to the Congress not later than 18 
months after the date of the enactment of this Act.

SEC. 7. OFFICE OF SPACE COMMERCE.

    (a) Redesignation.--The Office of Space Commercialization 
established under section 8 of the Technology Administration Act of 
1998 (15 U.S.C. 1511e) is redesignated as the Office of Space Commerce.
    (b) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary of Commerce for the Office of Space 
Commerce--
            (1) $1,800,000 for fiscal year 2004; and
            (2) $2,000,000 for fiscal year 2005.

SEC. 8. DELEGATION OF LICENSING AUTHORITY.

    (a) Delegation.--The Secretary of Commerce shall delegate the 
authority provided to the Secretary under title II of the Land Remote 
Sensing Policy Act of 1992 (15 U.S.C. 5621 et seq.) to the Director of 
the Office of Space Commerce.
    (b) Amendment.--Section 8(c) of the Technology Administration Act 
of 1998 (15 U.S.C. 1511e(c)) is amended--
            (1) by striking ``and'' at the end of paragraph (6);
            (2) by striking the period at the end of paragraph (7) and 
        inserting a semicolon; and
            (3) by adding at the end the following:
            ``(8) licensing private sector parties to operate private 
        remote sensing space systems; and
            ``(9) serving as the Executive Secretary for the 
        Interagency Global Positioning System Executive Board.''.
                                 <all>

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