Text: H.R.4525 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (12/01/2017)

 
[Congressional Bills 115th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[H.R. 4525 Introduced in House (IH)]

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115th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 4525

  To direct the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
   Administration to make grants to States and local governments and 
 nongovernmental organizations for purposes of carrying out shoreline 
          stabilization projects utilizing natural materials.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            December 1, 2017

 Mr. Pallone introduced the following bill; which was referred to the 
                     Committee on Natural Resources

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
  To direct the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
   Administration to make grants to States and local governments and 
 nongovernmental organizations for purposes of carrying out shoreline 
          stabilization projects utilizing natural materials.

    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 ``Living Shorelines Act of 2017''.

SEC. 2. LIVING SHORELINE GRANT PROGRAM.

    (a) Establishment.--The Administrator of the National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration shall make grants to eligible entities for 
purposes of--
            (1) carrying out large- and small-scale, climate-resilient 
        living shoreline projects; and
            (2) encouraging innovation in the use of natural materials 
        to protect coastal communities.
    (b) Project and Selection.--
            (1) In general.--To be eligible to receive a grant under 
        this section, an eligible entity shall submit to the 
        Administrator a proposed living shoreline project, including 
        monitoring and data collection with respect to the project.
            (2) Selection.--
                    (A) In general.--The Administrator shall select 
                recipients based on criteria to be prescribed by the 
                Administrator in consultation with relevant National 
                Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration offices, such as 
                the Office of Habitat Conservation, the Office for 
                Coastal Management, and the Restoration Center, and 
                taking into account the potential of proposed projects 
                submitted under this subsection to protect communities 
                and maintain the viability of the environment in areas 
                where such proposed projects are to be carried out.
                    (B) Priority.--In selecting recipients the 
                Administrator shall give priority consideration to a 
                proposed project to be conducted in an area for which 
                the President has declared, within the 10-year period 
                preceding the submission of a proposed project, that a 
                major disaster exists pursuant to section 401 of the 
                Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency 
                Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5170) due to a hurricane, 
                tropical storm, coastal storm, or flooding.
            (3) Minimum level of protection.--
                    (A) In general.--The Administrator shall select 
                proposed projects for grants under this section that--
                            (i) are primarily focused on providing 
                        protection for a coastal community; and
                            (ii) demonstrate and quantify the ability 
                        of the project to meet a minimal level of such 
                        protection.
                    (B) Protection defined.--In this paragraph the term 
                ``protection'' includes--
                            (i) mitigating the effects of erosion;
                            (ii) absorbing the impact of coastal 
                        storms;
                            (iii) mitigating shoreline flooding;
                            (iv) mitigating the effects of sea level 
                        rise; and
                            (v) other forms of protection as determined 
                        by the Administrator.
            (4) Community protection standards.--
                    (A) In general.--The Administrator--
                            (i) shall make the determination under 
                        paragraph (3) under standards established by 
                        the Administrator in consultation with the 
                        Corps of Engineers and relevant National 
                        Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration offices, 
                        such as the Office of Habitat Conservation, the 
                        Office for Coastal Management, and the 
                        Restoration Center; and
                            (ii) in establishing such standards, may 
                        consult with relevant interagency councils, 
                        such as the Estuary Habitat Restoration 
                        Council.
                    (B) Considerations.--Such standards shall take into 
                account historic flooding and projected flooding, 
                climate change, erosion, the value of properties in the 
                community, and ecological benefits of a proposed 
                project.
    (c) Use of Funds.--Grants made under this section may be used by 
recipients only to--
            (1) carry out living shoreline projects; and
            (2) monitor and collect data on the success and 
        deficiencies of projects, in accordance with standards issued 
        by the Administrator under subsection (e)(2).
    (d) Cost-Sharing.--An eligible entity that receives a grant under 
this section shall provide, from non-Federal sources, not less than 50 
percent of the funds towards the total cost, including administrative 
costs, of each living shoreline project funded by such grant.
    (e) Monitoring and Report.--
            (1) In general.--The Administrator shall require each 
        recipient of a grant under this section (or their 
        representative) to--
                    (A) transmit to the Administrator data collected 
                with the grant;
                    (B) monitor approved projects conducted with grants 
                under this section and collect data on the protection 
                provided by such projects and the success and 
                deficiencies of such projects in providing such 
                protection;
                    (C) make such data available to the public through 
                the website of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
                Administration; and
                    (D) by not later than December 31, 2022, publish a 
                report on the effectiveness of the program under this 
                section in increasing protection of coastal communities 
                through living shorelines techniques, including--
                            (i) descriptions of--
                                    (I) the projects that were awarded 
                                grants;
                                    (II) the construction carried out 
                                under such projects; and
                                    (III) what techniques and materials 
                                were used in such projects; and
                            (ii) data on the performance of such 
                        projects in providing such protection.
            (2) Standards.--
                    (A) In general.--Not later than 90 days after the 
                date of the enactment of this Act the Administrator 
                shall, in consultation with relevant offices of the 
                National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and 
                nongovernmental organizations, issue standards for the 
                collection under subsection (c) and this subsection of 
                data regarding the success and deficiencies of projects 
                conducted with grants under this section.
                    (B) Reporting.--The standards shall require 
                reporting of such data to the Administration on a 
                regular basis.
    (f) Definitions.--For purposes of this section:
            (1) Administrator.--The term ``Administrator'' means the 
        Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
        Administration.
            (2) Eligible entity.--The term ``eligible entity'' means 
        each of the following:
                    (A) A State or a unit of general local government 
                in a State.
                    (B) Nongovernmental organizations that are 
                described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue 
                Code of 1986 and exempt from tax under section 501(a) 
                of such Code.
            (3) Living shoreline project.--The term ``living shoreline 
        project''--
                    (A) means a project to mitigate the effects of 
                erosion caused by shoreline flooding or innundation, 
                currents, and wave energy, through project design that 
                stabilizes a shoreline by using natural materials to 
                create buffers to absorb the impact of coastal storms, 
                flooding, and wave energy and to prevent or minimize 
                (or both) shoreline erosion, that--
                            (i) incorporates as many natural elements 
                        as possible, such as native wetlands, submerged 
                        aquatic plants, native grasses, shrubs, or 
                        trees;
                            (ii) utilizes techniques that incorporate 
                        ecological and coastal engineering principles 
                        in shoreline stabilization; and
                            (iii) to the extent possible, maintains or 
                        restores existing natural slopes and 
                        connections between uplands and adjacent 
                        wetlands or surface waters; and
                    (B) may include, but not be limited to, the use 
                of--
                            (i) natural elements, such as sand, wetland 
                        plants, logs, oysters or other shellfish, 
                        submerged aquatic vegetation, native grasses, 
                        shrubs, trees, or coir fiber logs; and
                            (ii) structural materials, such as stone, 
                        concrete, wood, vinyl, oyster domes, or other 
                        approved engineered structures.
            (4) State.--The term ``State'' means each of the several 
        States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the United States 
        Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the 
        Northern Mariana Islands, and each Federally recognized Indian 
        Tribe.
    (g) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated $20,000,000 to the Administrator for each of fiscal years 
2018 through 2023 for purposes of carrying out this section.
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