Summary: H.R.2603 — 96th Congress (1979-1980)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (11/09/1979)

(Measure passed House, amended, roll call #643 (304-28))

Department of Energy National Security and Military Applications of Nuclear Energy Authorization Act of 1980 - =Title I: National Security Programs= - Authorizes the appropriation of funds for fiscal year 1980 to the Department of Energy (DOE) for operating expenses incurred in carrying out national security programs for scientific research and development, strategic and critical materials necessary for common defense, and military applications of nuclear energy, including: (1) the defense inertial confinement fusion program; (2) the naval reactor development program; (3) weapons activities; (4) verification and control technology; (5) materials production; (6) defense waste management; and (7) the nuclear materials security and safeguards technology development program.

Authorizes funds for plant and capital equipment necessary for specific projects under the above programs.

=Title II: General Provisions= - Prohibits the use of funds authorized under this Act where the costs of the program exceed 105 percent of the program authorization or the costs exceed by more than $10,000,000 the amount authorized by this Act, whichever is the lesser. Prohibits the use of funds authorized by this Act for programs which have not been presented to, or requested of Congress unless 30 calendar days have elapsed since the Secretary of Energy has presented to all the appropriate Congressional committees a full and complete statement of the action proposed. Allows the written waiver of such requirement where such waiver is approved in writing by each appropriate committee of Congress.

Authorizes the Secretary to start any general plant project only if: (1) the maximum estimated cost of such project does not exceed $750,000, and any building in such project does not exceed $300,000 in estimated costs; and (2) the total costs of all projects undertaken pursuant to this Act does not exceed the estimated cost by more than 25 percent.

Sets forth procedures for approving of projects that exceed the 25 percent estimated cost provision, and exempts from such procedures any project which has an estimated cost of less than $5,000,000.

Allows the transfer of funds from specified projects to other Government agencies for the performance of work for which the appropriation is made.

Authorizes the Secretary to perform construction design services for any defense activity construction projects in support of national security programs authorized under this Act. Directs the Secretary to notify the appropriate committees of Congress in writing of specific cost overruns.

Prohibits the use of funds authorized to be appropriated under this or any other Act for any purpose related to licensing of any DOE defense activity or facility by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Prohibits the use of funds authorized to be appropriated by this or any other Act to pay any penalty, forfeiture, fine, or settlement resulting from noncompliance with the Clean Air Act where: (1) the Secretary finds that compliance is physically impossible within the statutory time limits; or (2) presidentially requested appropriations for compliance have not been made available by the Congress.

Requires the Secretary to renegotiate the DOE contract with the Washington Public Power Supply System for the delivery of byproduct steam to ensure that the United States will recover the fair market value of such steam.

Authorizes the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant construction project in the Delaware Basin of New Mexico as a defense activity of the Department of Energy. States that such project is for the express purpose of providing a research and development facility to demonstrate the safe disposal of radioactive wastes resulting from defense activities. Directs the Secretary to consult and cooperate with officials of New Mexico in public health and safety matters in regard to such project. Stipulates that the Secretary may not enter into any agreement under which New Mexico could veto such project.

Directs the Secretary to submit a plan, by February 1, 1980, to terminate contracts between the United States and the Regents of the University of California for work at the Ernesto Orlando Lawrence Livermore Laboratory and at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory. Requires the Secretary to study the types of contracts that would best provide for continuation of the work performed under such existing contracts. Directs the Secretary to include in any replacement contract terms to assure that: (1) the objectives and missions of such laboratory continue to be in the field of national security; (2) the transition be orderly and preserve employee rights and benefits; and (3) any new contractor may retain current management officials and employees to maintain and foster excellence in laboratory work.

Redesignates: (1) the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory in New Mexico as the "Los Alamos National Scientific Laboratory;" (2) the Ernest Orlando Lawrence Livermore Laboratory in California as the "Ernest Orlando Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory;" and (3) the Sandia Laboratories in New Mexico and California as the "Sandia National Laboratories."