Text: H.R.5301 — 111th Congress (2009-2010)All Information (Except Text)

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Placed on Calendar Senate (07/21/2010)

Calendar No. 472

111th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 5301


To extend the period during which the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and States are prohibited from requiring a permit under section 402 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act for certain discharges that are incidental to normal operation of vessels, to reauthorize the National Estuary Program, and for other purposes.


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

July 21, 2010

Received; read twice and placed on the calendar


AN ACT

To extend the period during which the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and States are prohibited from requiring a permit under section 402 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act for certain discharges that are incidental to normal operation of vessels, to reauthorize the National Estuary Program, and for other purposes.

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

TITLE INational Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

SEC. 101. Discharges incidental to normal operation of vessels.

Public Law 110–299 (122 Stat. 2995, 33 U.S.C. 1342 note) is amended in section 2(a) by striking “during the 2-year period beginning on the date of enactment of this Act” and inserting “during the period beginning on the date of enactment of this Act and ending December 18, 2013”.

TITLE IIClean Estuaries

SEC. 201. Short title.

This title may be cited as the “Clean Estuaries Act of 2010”.

SEC. 202. National estuary program amendments.

(a) Purposes of conference.—

(1) DEVELOPMENT OF COMPREHENSIVE CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT PLANS.—Section 320(b)(4) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(b)(4)) is amended to read as follows:

“(4) develop and submit to the Administrator a comprehensive conservation and management plan that—

“(A) identifies the estuary and its associated upstream waters to be addressed by the plan, with consideration given to hydrological boundaries;

“(B) recommends priority corrective actions and compliance schedules addressing point and nonpoint sources of pollution to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the estuary, including restoration and maintenance of water quality, a resilient and diverse indigenous population of shellfish, fish, and wildlife, and recreational activities in the estuary, and assure that the designated uses of the estuary are protected;

“(C) considers current and future sustainable commercial activities in the estuary;

“(D) addresses the impacts of climate change on the estuary, including—

“(i) the identification and assessment of vulnerabilities in the estuary;

“(ii) the development and implementation of adaptation strategies; and

“(iii) the impacts of changes in sea level on estuarine water quality, estuarine habitat, and infrastructure located in the estuary;

“(E) increases public education and awareness with respect to—

“(i) the ecological health of the estuary;

“(ii) the water quality conditions of the estuary; and

“(iii) ocean, estuarine, land, and atmospheric connections and interactions;

“(F) identifies and assesses impairments, including upstream impairments, coming from outside of the area addressed by the plan, and the sources of those impairments;

“(G) includes performance measures and goals to track implementation of the plan; and

“(H) includes a coordinated monitoring strategy for Federal, State, and local governments and other entities.”.

(2) MONITORING AND MAKING RESULTS AVAILABLE.—Section 320(b)(6) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(b)(6)) is amended to read as follows:

“(6) monitor (and make results available to the public regarding)—

“(A) water quality conditions in the estuary and its associated upstream waters, as identified under paragraph (4)(A);

“(B) habitat conditions that relate to the ecological health and water quality conditions of the estuary; and

“(C) the effectiveness of actions taken pursuant to the comprehensive conservation and management plan developed for the estuary under this subsection;”.

(3) INFORMATION AND EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITIES.—Section 320(b) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(b)) is amended—

(A) by redesignating paragraph (7) as paragraph (8); and

(B) by inserting after paragraph (6) the following:

“(7) provide information and educational activities on the ecological health and water quality conditions of the estuary; and”.

(4) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—The sentence following section 320(b)(8) of such Act (as so redesignated) is amended by striking “paragraph (7)” and inserting “paragraph (8)”.

(b) Members of conference; collaborative processes.—

(1) MEMBERS OF CONFERENCE.—Section 320(c)(5) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(c)(5)) is amended by inserting after “institutions,” the following: “not-for-profit organizations,”.

(2) COLLABORATIVE PROCESSES.—Section 320(d) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(d)) is amended—

(A) by striking “(d)” and all that follows through “In developing” and inserting the following:

“(d) Utilization of existing data and collaborative processes.—

“(1) UTILIZATION OF EXISTING DATA.—In developing”; and

(B) by adding at the end the following:

“(2) UTILIZATION OF COLLABORATIVE PROCESSES.—In updating a plan under subsection (f)(4) or developing a new plan under subsection (b), a management conference shall make use of collaborative processes to—

“(A) ensure equitable inclusion of affected interests;

“(B) engage with members of the management conference, including through—

“(i) the use of consensus-based decision rules; and

“(ii) assistance from impartial facilitators, as appropriate;

“(C) ensure relevant information, including scientific, technical, and cultural information, is accessible to members;

“(D) promote accountability and transparency by ensuring members are informed in a timely manner of—

“(i) the purposes and objectives of the management conference; and

“(ii) the results of an evaluation conducted under subsection (f)(3);

“(E) identify the roles and responsibilities of members—

“(i) in the management conference proceedings; and

“(ii) in the implementation of the plan; and

“(F) seek resolution of conflicts or disputes as necessary.”.

(c) Administration of Plans.—Section 320(f) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(f)) is amended to read as follows:

“(f) Administration of Plans.—

“(1) APPROVAL.—Not later than 120 days after the date on which a management conference submits to the Administrator a comprehensive conservation and management plan under this section, and after providing for public review and comment, the Administrator shall approve the plan if the Administrator determines that the plan meets the requirements of this section and the affected Governor or Governors concur.

“(2) IMPLEMENTATION.—Upon approval of a comprehensive conservation and management plan under this section, the plan shall be implemented. Funds authorized to be appropriated under titles II and VI and section 319 may be used in accordance with the applicable requirements of this Act to assist States with the implementation of the plan.

“(3) EVALUATION.—

“(A) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 4 years after the date of enactment of this paragraph, and every 4 years thereafter, the Administrator shall complete an evaluation of the implementation of each comprehensive conservation and management plan developed under this section to determine the degree to which the goals of the plan have been met.

“(B) REVIEW AND COMMENT BY MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE.—In completing an evaluation under subparagraph (A), the Administrator shall submit the results of the evaluation to the appropriate management conference for review and comment.

“(C) REPORT.—

“(i) IN GENERAL.—In completing an evaluation under subparagraph (A), and after providing an opportunity for a management conference to submit comments under subparagraph (B), the Administrator shall issue a report on the results of the evaluation, including the findings and recommendations of the Administrator and any comments received from the management conference.

“(ii) AVAILABILITY TO PUBLIC.—The Administrator shall make a report issued under this subparagraph available to the public, including through publication in the Federal Register and on the Internet.

“(D) SPECIAL RULE FOR NEW PLANS.—Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), if a management conference submits a new comprehensive conservation and management plan to the Administrator after the date of enactment of this paragraph, the Administrator shall complete the evaluation of the implementation of the plan required by subparagraph (A) not later than 4 years after the date of such submission and every 4 years thereafter.

“(4) UPDATES.—

“(A) REQUIREMENT.—Not later than 18 months after the date on which the Administrator makes an evaluation of the implementation of a comprehensive conservation and management plan available to the public under paragraph (3)(C), a management conference convened under this section shall submit to the Administrator an update of the plan. The updated plan shall reflect, to the maximum extent practicable, the results of the program evaluation.

“(B) APPROVAL OF UPDATES.—Not later than 120 days after the date on which a management conference submits to the Administrator an updated comprehensive conservation and management plan under subparagraph (A), and after providing for public review and comment, the Administrator shall approve the updated plan if the Administrator determines that the updated plan meets the requirements of this section.

“(5) PROBATIONARY STATUS.—The Administrator may consider a management conference convened under this section to be in probationary status if the management conference has not received approval for an updated comprehensive conservation and management plan under paragraph (4)(B) on or before the last day of the 3-year period beginning on the date on which the Administrator makes an evaluation of the plan available to the public under paragraph (3)(C).”.

(d) Federal agencies.—Section 320 of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330) is amended—

(1) by redesignating subsections (g), (h), (i), (j), and (k) as subsections (h), (i), (j), (k), and (m), respectively; and

(2) by inserting after subsection (f) the following:

“(g) Federal agencies.—

“(1) ACTIVITIES CONDUCTED WITHIN ESTUARIES WITH APPROVED PLANS.—After approval of a comprehensive conservation and management plan by the Administrator, any Federal action or activity affecting the estuary shall be conducted, to the maximum extent practicable, in a manner consistent with the plan.

“(2) COORDINATION AND COOPERATION.—The Secretary of the Army (acting through the Chief of Engineers), the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Director of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, the Chief of the Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the heads of other appropriate Federal agencies, as determined by the Administrator, shall, to the maximum extent practicable, cooperate and coordinate activities, including monitoring activities, related to the implementation of a comprehensive conservation and management plan approved by the Administrator. The Environmental Protection Agency shall serve as the lead coordinating agency under this paragraph.

“(3) CONSIDERATION OF PLANS IN AGENCY BUDGET REQUESTS.—In making an annual budget request for a Federal agency referred to in paragraph (2), the head of such agency shall consider the responsibilities of the agency under this section, including under comprehensive conservation and management plans approved by the Administrator.

“(4) MONITORING.—The heads of the Federal agencies referred to in paragraph (2) shall collaborate on the development of tools and methodologies for monitoring the ecological health and water quality conditions of estuaries covered by a management conference convened under this section.”.

(e) Grants.—

(1) RECIPIENTS.—Section 320(h)(1) of such Act (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) is amended by striking “other public” and all that follows before the period at the end and inserting “and other public or nonprofit private agencies, institutions, and organizations”.

(2) EFFECTS OF PROBATIONARY STATUS.—Section 320(h) of such Act (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) is further amended by adding at the end the following:

“(4) EFFECTS OF PROBATIONARY STATUS.—

“(A) REDUCTIONS IN GRANT AMOUNTS.—The Administrator shall reduce, by an amount to be determined by the Administrator, grants for the implementation of a comprehensive conservation and management plan developed by a management conference convened under this section if the Administrator determines that the management conference is in probationary status under subsection (f)(5).

“(B) TERMINATION OF MANAGEMENT CONFERENCES.—The Administrator shall terminate a management conference convened under this section, and cease funding for the implementation of the comprehensive conservation and management plan developed by the management conference, if the Administrator determines that the management conference has been in probationary status for 2 consecutive years.”.

(3) CONFORMING AMENDMENT.—Section 320(i) of such Act (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) is amended by striking “subsection (g)” and inserting “subsection (h)”.

(f) Authorization of appropriations.—Section 320(j) of such Act (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) is amended to read as follows:

“(j) Authorization of appropriations.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—There is authorized to be appropriated to the Administrator $50,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2011 through 2016 for—

“(A) expenses related to the administration of management conferences under this section, except that such expenses shall not exceed 10 percent of the amount appropriated under this subsection;

“(B) making grants under subsection (h); and

“(C) monitoring the implementation of a conservation and management plan by the management conference, or by the Administrator in any case in which the conference has been terminated.

“(2) ALLOCATIONS.—Of the sums authorized to be appropriated under this subsection, the Administrator shall provide—

“(A) at least $1,250,000 per fiscal year, subject to the availability of appropriations, for the development, implementation, and monitoring of each conservation and management plan eligible for grant assistance under subsection (h); and

“(B) up to $5,000,000 per fiscal year to carry out subsection (k).”.

(g) Research.—Section 320(k)(1)(A) of such Act (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) is amended—

(1) by striking “paramenters” and inserting “parameters”; and

(2) by inserting “(including monitoring of both pathways and ecosystems to track the introduction and establishment of nonnative species)” before “, to provide the Administrator”.

(h) National estuary program evaluation.—Section 320 of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330) is amended by inserting after subsection (k) (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) the following:

“(l) National estuary program evaluation.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 4 years after the date of enactment of this paragraph, and every 4 years thereafter, the Administrator shall complete an evaluation of the national estuary program established under this section.

“(2) SPECIFIC ASSESSMENTS.—In conducting an evaluation under this subsection, the Administrator shall—

“(A) assess the effectiveness of the national estuary program in improving water quality, natural resources, and sustainable uses of the estuaries covered by management conferences convened under this section;

“(B) identify best practices for improving water quality, natural resources, and sustainable uses of the estuaries covered by management conferences convened under this section, including those practices funded through the use of technical assistance from the Environmental Protection Agency and other Federal agencies, and assess the reasons why such practices result in the achievement of program goals; and

“(C) identify any redundant requirements for reporting by recipients of a grant under this section, and develop and recommend a plan for limiting reporting redundancies.

“(3) REPORT.—In completing an evaluation under this subsection, the Administrator shall issue a report on the results of the evaluation, including the findings and recommendations of the Administrator.

“(4) AVAILABILITY.—The Administrator shall make a report issued under this subsection available to management conferences convened under this section and the public, including through publication in the Federal Register and on the Internet.”.

(i) Convening of conference.—Section 320(a)(2) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 1330(a)(2)) is amended—

(1) by striking “(2) Convening of conference.—” and all that follows through “In any case” and inserting the following:

“(2) CONVENING OF CONFERENCE.—In any case”; and

(2) by striking subparagraph (B).

(j) Great Lakes estuaries.—Section 320(m) of such Act (as redesignated by subsection (d) of this section) is amended by striking the subsection designation and all that follows through “and those portions of tributaries” and inserting the following:

“(m) Definitions.—In this section, the terms ‘estuary’ and ‘estuarine zone’ have the meanings such terms have in section 104(n)(4), except that—

“(1) the term ‘estuary’ also includes near coastal waters and other bodies of water within the Great Lakes that are similar in form and function to the waters described in the definition of ‘estuary’ contained in section 104(n)(4); and

“(2) the term ‘estuarine zone’ also includes—

“(A) waters within the Great Lakes described in paragraph (1) and transitional areas from such waters that are similar in form and function to the transitional areas described in the definition of ‘estuarine zone’ contained in section 104(n)(4);

“(B) associated aquatic ecosystems; and

“(C) those portions of tributaries”.

Passed the House of Representatives July 20, 2010.

Attest:
Lorraine C. Miller,

Clerk  


Calendar No. 472

111th CONGRESS
     2d Session
H. R. 5301

AN ACT
To extend the period during which the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and States are prohibited from requiring a permit under section 402 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act for certain discharges that are incidental to normal operation of vessels, to reauthorize the National Estuary Program, and for other purposes.

July 21, 2010
Received; read twice and placed on the calendar
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