Summary: S.1143 — 96th Congress (1979-1980)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Conference report filed in House (12/11/1979)

(Conference report filed in House, H. Rept. 96-697)

Amends the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to require the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a review of the status of a species before proposing to list the species as endangered or threatened.

Amends the public notice provisions of such Act to require the publication of a summary of the text of regulations issued pursuant to such Act.

Requires public meetings and hearings on critical habitat proposals to be held separately.

Amends the emergency regulation provision of such Act to allow the Secretary to list a species and designate critical habitat under such provision without first complying with the requirement that the Secretary consider the economic and other relevant impacts of designating an area as critical habitat.

Amends the emergency listing provision of such Act to include plant species in addition to fish and wildlife. Extends the emergency time period to 240 days.

Requires the Secretary to establish agency guidelines to insure that the purposes of the provisions for determination of endangered and threatened species are effectively and efficiently achieved.

Requires Federal agencies, in consultation with the Secretary, to insure that agency actions are not likely to jeopardize endangered or threatened species, using the best scientific and commercial data available. Requires the Secretary to render biological opinions advising whether or not proposed agency action would violate the above provision.

Authorizes all persons who wish to file for an exemption to conduct a biological assessment to identify any endangered or threatened species which is likely to be affected by agency action.

Provides that, in the case of an action involving a permit or license applicant, an application for exemption may not be filed until after final agency action has been rendered pursuant to the judicial review provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act. Requires the Secretaries of Interior and Commerce to jointly convene a review board in those instances where both Departments have issued negative biological opinions for the same agency action. Provides that the threshold requirements for obtaining an exemption set forth in such Act apply to the Federal agency involved and the exemption applicant.

Provides that exemptions granted by the Endangered Species Committee shall be permanent with respect to all endangered or threatened species for the purposes of completing such agency action, regardless of whether the species were identified in the biological assessment, and only if such assessment has been conducted on the agency action. Stipulates that the exemption will be permanent unless the Secretary finds that the exemption would result in the extinction of a species not the subject of consultation or not identified in any biological assessment, and the Endangered Species Committee determines that the exemption should not be permanent.

Authorizes the appropriation of $600,000 to the Secretary to assist the review boards and the Endangered Species Committee in carrying out their functions during fiscal years 1980, 1981, and 1982.

Authorizes the Secretary to encourage foreign nations to develop programs for the conservation of endangered and threatened plants. Permits the Secretary to assign Departmental personnel for the purpose of cooperating with foreign countries and international organizations in the promotion of plant conservation.

Repeals existing provisions concerning the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora and replaces it with a new section on Convention implementation. Establishes the Secretary of the Interior as the Scientific Authority and the Management Authority for purposes of the Convention. Requires the Secretary to carry out these functions through the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.

Establishes the International Convention Advisory Commission to insure that the Scientific Authority receives unbiased scientific advice on matters within the responsibility of the Authority from a multi-disciplined group. Requires the Commission to make recommendations to the Secretary or his designee on all matters pertaining to the responsibilities of the Authority under the terms of the Convention.

Extends the exemption permitting owners of certain whale parts and products which were held in stock prior to 1973 to continue trading such products for an additional three years.

Authorizes appropriations to carry out the purposes of such Act during fiscal years 1980, 1981, and 1982.