STATEMENTS ON INTRODUCED BILLS AND JOINT RESOLUTIONS; Congressional Record Vol. 152, No. 68
(Senate - May 26, 2006)

Text available as:

Formatting necessary for an accurate reading of this text may be shown by tags (e.g., <DELETED> or <BOLD>) or may be missing from this TXT display. For complete and accurate display of this text, see the PDF.


[Pages S5344-S5392]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




          STATEMENTS ON INTRODUCED BILLS AND JOINT RESOLUTIONS

      By Mr. DAYTON (for himself and Mr. Lott):
  S. 3239. A bill to require full disclosure of insurance coverage and 
noncoverage by insurance companies and provide for Federal Trade 
Commission enforcement; to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation.
  Mr. DAYTON. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the text of 
S. 3239, the Honesty Is the Best Insurance Policy Act of 2006, be 
printed in the Record.
  There being no objection, the bill was ordered to be printed in the 
Record, as follows:

                                S. 3239

       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 ``Honesty is the Best 
     Insurance Policy Act of 2006''.

     SEC. 2. UNLAWFUL ACT.

       Each individual policy written by a State-registered 
     insurance company shall include on the front or first page of 
     the policy a ``Noncoverage Disclosure'' box restating in 
     plain English, in bold font twice the size of the text in the 
     body of the policy, all conditions, exclusions, and other 
     limitations pertaining to coverage under that policy, 
     regardless of the underlying insurance product in question.

     SEC. 3. ENFORCEMENT.

       (a) In General.--Any violation of this Act shall be treated 
     as a violation of a regulation under section 18(a)(1)(B) of 
     the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. 57a(a)(1)(B)) 
     regarding unfair or deceptive acts or practices.
       (b) Regulations.--The Federal Trade Commission (referred to 
     in this Act as the ``Commission'') shall promulgate 
     regulations to carry out this Act.

     SEC. 4. POWERS OF COMMISSION.

       (a) In General.--The Commission, acting through the 
     Division of Financial Practices in the Bureau of Consumer 
     Protection, shall prevent any person from violating this Act, 
     and any regulation promulgated thereunder, in the same 
     manner, by the same means, and with the same jurisdiction, 
     powers and duties as though all applicable terms and 
     provisions of the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. 41 
     et seq.) were incorporated into and made a part of this Act.
       (b) Penalties.--Any person who violates regulations 
     promulgated under this Act shall be subject to the penalties 
     and entitled to the privileges and immunities provided in the 
     Federal Trade Commission Act as though all applicable terms 
     and provisions of the Federal Trade Commission Act were 
     incorporated into and made part of this Act.
       (c) Authority Preserved.--Nothing in this Act shall be 
     construed to limit the authority of the Commission under any 
     other provision of law.
                                 ______
                                 
      By Mrs. CLINTON (for herself and Ms. Mikulski):
  S. 3255. A bill to provide student borrowers with basic rights, 
including the right to timely information about their loans and the 
right to make fair and reasonable loan payments, and for other 
purposes; to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
  Mrs. CLINTON. Mr. President. I rise today to introduce legislation to 
protect the rights of student borrowers trying to repay their loans. 
Students are borrowing now more than ever to pay for higher education. 
Need-based grant aid has stagnated while college costs have grown. The 
result is more students borrowing and higher levels of borrowing. In 
1993, less than one-half of students graduating from 4-year colleges 
and universities had student loans. Now two-thirds do.
  Unlike other debt, you take out student loans to invest in yourself. 
For most people, that is a wise investment. In the long run student 
loans help people earn more money and have more choices in their 
careers. Student borrowers must also take their responsibilities 
seriously, so future generations of students can also benefit from the 
chance to borrow money--so they do not have to burden their families.
  But today it is harder to pay back loans than when I left school or 
when most of the Members of this Chamber did. The average debt burden 
for college graduates has increased 58 percent over the past decade, 
after accounting for inflation. And too many borrowers are overly 
burdened as they repay student loans. When I travel in New York, I meet 
young people all the time who say to me, ``You know, Senator, I'd like 
to go to nursing school or I'd like to be a teacher or I'd like to go 
into law enforcement, but I've got so much debt that I can't afford to 
do that.'' We need to make sure that student loans do not stand in 
people's way and prevent them from following their dreams.
  The burden of student loan debt can put people in economic handcuffs, 
forcing them out of important but low-paying professions or forcing 
them to delay the purchase of a home. Today 54 percent of former 
students wish they had borrowed less for college, up from 31 percent in 
1991. Student loan debt may even prevent borrowers from pursuing a 
higher degree. According to the Nellie Mae Corporation, 40 percent of 
college graduates who do not go to graduate school blame student loan 
debt. Most disturbingly, the prospect that student loans will be 
burdensome may prevent successful high school students from going to 
college. Twenty percent of low-income high school graduates who are 
qualified for college do not go to college.
  The Student Borrower Bill of Rights will make it easier for students 
to repay and give them rights that are enforceable. The bill will give 
students the right to shop for loans in a free marketplace. It will 
give students access to better information about their loans. The bill 
will give student borrowers the right to make fair, monthly payments 
that do not exceed a percentage of their incomes and fair interest 
rates and fees. The bill would also give students the right to borrow 
without exploitation.
  We need this bill now to help students struggling to go to college. 
For the average family it now takes more income to pay for a child to 
go to college than it did, as a percentage, 25 years ago.
  So we need to do everything we can to ensure all students can afford 
college. It is in their best interest and it is in the Nation's best 
interest.
  I urge my colleagues to join me in supporting the Student Borrower 
Bill of Rights.
                                 ______
                                 
      By Mr. SPECTER (for himself and Mr. Leahy):
  S. 3274. A bill to create a fair and efficient system to resolve 
claims of victims for bodily injury caused by asbestos exposure, and 
for other purposes; read the first time.
  Mr. SPECTER. Mr. President, I am introducing a revised bill on 
asbestos reform, with the sponsorship of Senator Leahy.
  This is a subject which the Senate had considered earlier this year, 
and it is one which I hope we will return to.

[[Page S5345]]

  To give impetus to that, I am introducing an amended version of the 
asbestos trust bill which makes very substantial improvements to 
satisfy interests and concerns raised by a number of Senators.
  The bill provides for a more prompt recovery for the sickest 
claimants; stronger medical criteria; preserves the ability of the 
bankruptcy trusts to continue paying impaired claims; has an improved 
allocation formula for well-insured and financially strapped defendant 
companies; and it has a tighter control on so-called leakage.
  Last Friday, we lost a great American judge, Judge Edward R. Becker, 
who made such an enormous contribution to the structuring of this 
asbestos reform legislation. He gave his own time, came to Washington 
at his own cost to preside over many meetings with the so-called 
stakeholders, the manufacturers, the trial lawyers, the AFL-CIO 
representing labor, and the insurance companies. He was working on this 
bill making calls to Senators right up until the time that prostate 
cancer took him a week ago today.
  When I gave him a report of our progress when it was obvious that the 
end was very near, he said, ``Win one for the Gipper.'' And we want to 
win one for the Gipper, for Judge Becker. We want to win this one for 
America.
  I ask unanimous consent that the full text of my prepared statement 
and the text of the bill be printed in the Record.
  There being no objection, the material was ordered to be printed in 
the Record, as follows:

       Mr. SPECTER. I have sought recognition to comment about the 
     status of on-going developments on asbestos reform and am 
     pleased to introduce an amended version of S.852, the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, The 
     ``FAIR Act''. In introducing this legislation today, I remind 
     the Senate of important unfinished business that it is duty-
     bound to complete for the sake of thousands of victims dying 
     from asbestos-related disease who are unable to secure 
     compensation in today's broken tort system.
       Judge Edward R. Becker and I worked for nearly three years 
     on ways to improve S. 852, even after the bill was side-
     tracked on the Senate floor on February 14, 2006. Sadly, 
     Judge Becker passed away on May 19, 2006. Judge Becker--a 
     federal Judge for 34 years--stands today as one of the 
     greatest citizens in the history of the city of Philadelphia, 
     one of the greatest judges in the history of the United 
     States, and one of my most dear and trusted friends. His 
     contributions and tireless work on this legislation helped 
     bring the bill to its current point, and his commitment to 
     solving the asbestos crisis in this country should be 
     remembered as the Senate moves forward on this bill. This new 
     bill is a product of our continued efforts to develop the 
     most fair and rationale system to replace the broken asbestos 
     tort system.

  More than three months have past since the Senate was prematurely 
diverted in its consideration of this important legislation. To remind 
my I colleagues, the majority leader brought the committee-reported 
asbestos bill to the floor on February 6 and the following day this 
body voted overwhelmingly (98-1) to invoke cloture on the motion to 
proceed. While we pursued substantive debate, opponents of the bill 
raised a non-substantive and never-before used procedural obstacle that 
blocked the Senate from further considering the legislation. This 
obstacle, a budgetary point of order, lacked any merit because the 
proposed asbestos trust fund simply does not collect or spend a single 
penny from the American taxpayer. And let me make clear that the 
commitment to using private, non-taxpayer funds is iron-clad. The trust 
fund considered back in February and introduced again here today is 
capitalized exclusively by defendant companies, insurers and existing 
bankruptcy trusts that have known asbestos liabilities. The bill 
expressly provides that ``[r]epayment of moneys borrowed by the 
administrator . . . is limited solely to amounts available in the 
[Fund].'' It also states that ``Nothing in this Act shall be construed 
to create any obligation of funding from the United States Government, 
including any borrowing authorized . . .'' With these explicit 
statements throughout the bill, it is abundantly clear that this 
legislation would not be a burden on the U.S. Treasury. In fact, the 
Congressional Budget Office confirmed these statements in a letter 
dated February 13, 2006, concluding that ``the legislation would be 
deficit-neutral over the life of the fund.'' Therefore, it is time for 
the Senate to set aside these obstructionist tactics and move forward 
with this important legislation on its merits.
  The bill that I am introducing today will provide substantial 
assurances of acceptable compensation to asbestos victims and 
substantial assurances to manufacturers and insurers to resolve 
asbestos claims with finality. Over the past three decades, a solution 
to the asbestos crisis has eluded Congress and the courts. Some 77 
companies have gone bankrupt, thousands of individuals who have been 
exposed to asbestos have deadly diseases--mesothelioma and other such 
ailments--and are not being compensated or, because of the unfairness 
of the current system, see little of the awards they do win. A May 10, 
2005 report released by the RAND Institute for Civil Justice estimates 
that nonmalignants make up about 90 percent of the litigation and most 
are unimpaired. According-to RAND, the number of claims continues to 
rise, with over 730,000 claims filed already and some 200,000 pending. 
The number of asbestos defendants also has risen sharply, from about 
300 in the 1980s, to more than 8,400 today. Most of these defendants 
were users of the product, not asbestos manufacturers. These companies 
account for 85 percent of the U.S. economy and represent nearly every 
U.S. industry; including automakers, shipbuilders, textile mills, 
retailers, insurers, shipbuilders, electric utilities and virtually 
every company involved in manufacturing or construction in the last 
thirty years.
  Asbestos leaves many victims in its wake. First and foremost, those 
who are sick and their families have suffered greatly and do not 
receive fair compensation in the tort system. Asbestos victims filing 
claims receive only about 42 cents for every dollar spent on asbestos 
litigation. The other 58 cents are consumed by the extremely high costs 
of litigation where 31 cents of every dollar go to defense costs, and 
27 go to plaintiffs' attorneys and other related costs.

  The flawed asbestos litigation system not only hurts the sick and 
their chances of receiving fair compensation, but also claims other 
victims. These include employees, retirees and shareholders of affected 
companies whose jobs, savings and retirement plans are jeopardized by 
the tidal wave of asbestos lawsuits. With asbestos litigation affecting 
so many companies, this also impacts the overall economy, including 
jobs, pensions, stock prices, tax revenues and insurance costs. Indeed, 
according to a 2002 study by Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, asbestos 
bankruptcies have cost nearly 60,000 workers their jobs and $200 
million in lost wages. To make matters worse, employees' retirement 
funds have shrunk by 25 percent.
  Even this country's highest court has practically begged the Congress 
to fix this national asbestos litigation problem. In 1997--the first of 
several times it has commented on the growing asbestos problem--the 
Supreme Court observed:

       The most objectionable aspects of this asbestos litigation 
     can be briefly summarized: dockets in both federal and state 
     courts continue to grow; long delays are routine; trials are 
     too long; the same issues are litigated over and over; 
     transaction costs exceed the victims' recovery by nearly two 
     to one; exhaustion of assets threatens and distorts the 
     process; and future claimants may lose altogether. . . .

  To the extent anyone argues that today's bill should proceed through 
regular order, I would suggest that they take a hard look at the 
extensive consideration and analysis given to this bill beginning in 
early 2003 when then Chairman Hatch first introduced S. 1125. Since 
that time, the Judiciary Committee has held over 10 markups, 7 
hearings, and, of course, countless stakeholder meetings that were 
moderated by the late Judge Becker. I can't think of any other bill 
where more time, more effort, and more man-hours have been committed to 
thoroughly understand and address all the complex issues in this bill. 
To assert that the legislation was not carefully drafted is one 
argument that has no basis in reality. As a result of this process, we 
now have before us a carefully analyzed and well thought through bill 
that tries to anticipate every turn, every problem and every 
contingency that could occur down the road if this Fund becomes law.
  The legislation being introduced today builds on prior iterations of 
the trust fund concept. Under the proposal,

[[Page S5346]]

the Department of Labor would house a national no-fault asbestos trust 
fund privately financed and guaranteed by defendant companies and 
insurers with proven asbestos liabilities. The bill totally exempts 
small business from paying into the Fund and provides a litany of 
safeguards to ensure that defendant companies do not encounter 
insolvencies or inequities because of their contributions.
  Asbestos victims would submit their claims to the fund under specific 
and detailed procedures and receive fair compensation for their 
asbestos injuries they can meet certain medical criteria. These 
criteria are designed to prioritize monetary compensation for those 
with an actual impairment from asbestos disease while providing medical 
monitoring to those who are not sick or unimpaired. Most important, the 
bill caps attorneys fees at 5 percent for any monetary compensation 
that a victim receives through the Fund.
  The national trust fund would operate as a surrogate for the tort 
system which would by and large cease to operate upon enactment. 
Claimants with individualized cases at trial or beyond would be 
permitted to pursue that claim in the tort system. But such cases would 
be few and far between when measured against the massive amount of 
unimpaired consolidated lawsuits that are the prime culprit to today's 
litigation mess.
  The bill provides for a well thought out start up process that 
ensures swift compensation to terminal asbestos victims and mandates a 
reversion to a modified tort system in the event the trust fund cannot 
pay claims or exhausts the entire $140 billion. This latter point is 
especially important to note given repeated concerns that I have heard 
from many members about the taxpayer being on the hook. Unlike the 
Black Lung Program or other federal compensation program for that 
matter, the asbestos trust fund will affirmatively sunset once the $140 
billion is used or if the Fund cannot pay claims. The sunset enables 
victims to pursue their claims in court but in a more equitable tort 
environment that prohibits forum shopping and use of junk science to 
prove an asbestos claim.
  Every single time a concern has been raised, Judge Becker and I have 
studied the issue extensively. A case in point was in September 2005, 
when the analysis by the Bates White firm alleged that the proposed 
fund would face claims of over $140 billion, I called for a hearing on 
this issue. The hearing, which was held by the Judiciary Committee on 
November 17, 2005, we heard testimony on both sides of the issue. The 
Bates White study proved to be fatally flawed. In fact, in December 
2005, CBO confirmed its original cost estimate, reaffirming that $140 
billion would be sufficient to cover claims filed for compensation 
under the trust fund.
  The asbestos trust fund bill that I am introducing today with Senator 
Leahy should come as no surprise to anyone because it essentially 
embodies the substitute bill that was pending on the floor months ago 
during the Senate's full consideration of asbestos reform last 
February. The trust fund bill being introduced today also includes 
specific floor amendments filed by Members from both sides of the aisle 
and a handful of additional new changes that we believe respond 
directly to concerns raised during the asbestos floor debate. The floor 
amendments incorporated in this bill include, among others, the Kyl 
1.67 percent hardship amendment, Landrieu amendment on gulf coast 
hurricanes and World Trade Center victims, and Coburn amendment 
regarding B-readers.
  Other changes made include measures that address the well-insured 
defendant problem, and limitation on so called ``dormant claims'' that 
are barred from recovery through the Fund. For the benefit of my 
colleagues and their staff, we will circulate a detailed section by 
section summary of the bill early next week during the recess and an 
index of key changes from the substitute. But for now, I would like to 
highlight some of the additional features that I believe respond to 
concerns raised by Members on both sides of the aisle:
  Prompter Recovery for the Sickest Claimants: The new bill establishes 
safeguards to protect ``gaming'' of the start-up process so that those 
claimants that are the sickest receive prompt compensation. The bill 
also authorizes the Administrator to begin receiving, reviewing and 
deciding claims immediately following enactment of the FAIR Act. To 
ensure that claims processing begins immediately, the Administrator 
also is authorized to contract with entities experienced in claims 
processing on an expedited basis.
  Stronger Medical Criteria: The new bill strengthens the medical 
criteria by adopting numerous amendments and suggestions offered by Dr. 
Coburn that would authorize random audits of affidavits, clarify that a 
claimant's diagnosis be made by a ``treating'' rather than ``examining 
physician'', require claimants to provide detailed, specific and 
credible affidavits as proof of significant asbestos exposure, and 
disqualify certain plaintiffs' friendly B-readers from participating in 
claims administration. The current tort system is riddled with fraud, 
stemming largely from the ``financially-motivated'' relationship 
between plaintiffs' attorneys and many of the doctors conducting 
medical tests and screening. While S. 852 contained provisions which 
addressed this issue (e.g., specified criminal penalties for falsified 
claims, 5 percent limit on attorneys' fees), these added measures 
provide increased protection against fraudulent practices in 
determining the eligibility of a claimant for compensation under the 
trust fund.
  Preserves the Ability of Bankruptcy Trusts to Continue Paving 
Impaired Claims: The new bill allows existing bankruptcy trusts to 
retain at least 10 percent of their assets to continue paying pending 
impaired claims during the Fund start-up period. This measure ensures 
that impaired claimants receive compensation to pay medical bills while 
preventing such claimants from ``double-dipping'' by recovering more 
than they would receive under the FAIR Act.
  Improved Allocation Formula for Well-Insured and Financially Strapped 
Defendant Companies: Due to the inherent financial pressures that 
contributions to the trust fund could impose on manufacturers, the new 
bill would provide for a much improved allocation formula for defendant 
companies who contribute to the Fund. It incorporates the Kyl 1.67 
percent hardship amendment which allows companies to contribute 
annually 1.67 percent of their gross revenues in lieu of the tiering 
formula set forth in the bill. This measure is particularly helpful to 
those smaller to medium size companies that are assigned to the higher 
contribution tiers because of their significant asbestos liabilities. 
The bill also incorporates a provision that addresses the often-heard 
problem involving well insured defendants who currently pay little to 
no out-of-pocket costs in the tort system. Similar to the Kyl hardship 
provision, this proposal would allow certain smaller to medium size 
companies to contribute to the Fund based on 5 percent of their 
adjusted cash flows rather than the amount specified in their assigned 
tier.

  Tighter Control on So-Called ``Leakage'': The new bill further 
addresses the ``leakage'' issue by improving the start-up process to 
ensure that exigent claims proceed through the trust fund rather than 
the tort system. The new bill also closes significant loopholes to 
ensure that preempted claims are not revived and prevents so-called 
``dormant claims'' (e.g., inactive claims in the tort system that are 
still listed on court dockets) from being filed with the Fund.
  The new bill remains both integrated and comprehensive and reflective 
of a remarkable will to enact legislation. This has become evident to 
me based on over a hundred meetings that I have personally had with 
Members and staff on the asbestos problem. The Senate plainly wants a 
more rational asbestos claims system, and I believe that this new 
legislation offers a realistic prospect of accomplishing that result.
  If this amended bill is rejected, I do not see the agenda of the 
Senate Judiciary Committee revisiting this issue. I cannot conceive of 
a more strenuous effort being directed to this subject that has been 
done over the past three years. Let me make clear that this is the last 
best chance.
  This said, I remain confident that during debate on the Senate floor, 
we can forge and enact a bill that is fair to the claimants and to 
business and that will put an end once and for all to this

[[Page S5347]]

nightmare chapter in American legal, economic and social history. If we 
can summon the legislative will in a bipartisan spirit, it can be done. 
Anything less, would preserve the injustices of a system that even the 
highest court of this country has called upon the Congress to fix.
  Over the coming weeks, I plan on moving ahead with this bill and will 
do everything in my power to see that the Senate finishes its business 
on asbestos reform. The Judiciary Committee has worked too hard and too 
long on this bill to see it all go to waste over a procedural and 
technical nuance. I urge the Leader to schedule time for this important 
legislation in the coming months, and by introducing this bill today I 
am hopeful that we make a first big stride in that direction. The time 
is now for asbestos reform and any further delay by this body will only 
prolong the suffering of asbestos victims, companies and their 
employees. I yield the floor.
                                  ____


                                S. 3274

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

     SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

       (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Fairness 
     in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006'' or the ``FAIR Act 
     of 2006''.
       (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents of this Act 
     is as follows:

Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.
Sec. 2. Findings and purpose.
Sec. 3. Definitions.

                  TITLE I--ASBESTOS CLAIMS RESOLUTION

          Subtitle A--Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation

Sec. 101. Establishment of Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation.
Sec. 102. Advisory Committee on Asbestos Disease Compensation.
Sec. 103. Medical Advisory Committee.
Sec. 104. Claimant assistance.
Sec. 105. Physicians Panels.
Sec. 106. Program startup.
Sec. 107. Authority of the Administrator.

          Subtitle B--Asbestos Disease Compensation Procedures

Sec. 111. Essential elements of eligible claim.
Sec. 112. General rule concerning no-fault compensation.
Sec. 113. Filing of claims.
Sec. 114. Eligibility determinations and claim awards.
Sec. 115. Auditing procedures.

                      Subtitle C--Medical Criteria

Sec. 121. Medical criteria requirements.

                           Subtitle D--Awards

Sec. 131. Amount.
Sec. 132. Medical monitoring.
Sec. 133. Payment.
Sec. 134. Setoffs for collateral source compensation and prior awards.
Sec. 135. Certain claims not affected by payment of awards.

            TITLE II--ASBESTOS INJURY CLAIMS RESOLUTION FUND

           Subtitle A--Asbestos Defendants Funding Allocation

Sec. 201. Definitions.
Sec. 202. Authority and tiers.
Sec. 203. Subtiers.
Sec. 204. Assessment administration.
Sec. 205. Stepdowns and funding holidays.
Sec. 206. Accounting treatment.

                Subtitle B--Asbestos Insurers Commission

Sec. 210. Definition.
Sec. 211. Establishment of Asbestos Insurers Commission.
Sec. 212. Duties of Asbestos Insurers Commission.
Sec. 213. Powers of Asbestos Insurers Commission.
Sec. 214. Personnel matters.
Sec. 215. Termination of Asbestos Insurers Commission.
Sec. 216. Expenses and costs of Commission.

           Subtitle C--Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution Fund

Sec. 221. Establishment of Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution Fund.
Sec. 222. Management of the Fund.
Sec. 223. Enforcement of payment obligations.
Sec. 224. Interest on underpayment or nonpayment.
Sec. 225. Education, consultation, screening, and monitoring.
Sec. 226. National Mesothelioma Research and Treatment Program.

                       TITLE III--JUDICIAL REVIEW

Sec. 301. Judicial review of rules and regulations.
Sec. 302. Judicial review of award decisions.
Sec. 303. Judicial review of participants' assessments.
Sec. 304. Other judicial challenges.
Sec. 305. Stays, exclusivity, and constitutional review.

                   TITLE IV--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Sec. 401. False information.
Sec. 402. Effect on bankruptcy laws.
Sec. 403. Effect on other laws and existing claims.
Sec. 404. Effect on insurance and reinsurance contracts.
Sec. 405. Annual report of the Administrator and sunset of the Act.
Sec. 406. Rules of construction relating to liability of the United 
              States Government.
Sec. 407. Rules of construction.
Sec. 408. Violations of environmental health and safety requirements.
Sec. 409. Nondiscrimination of health insurance.

                         TITLE V--ASBESTOS BAN

Sec. 501. Prohibition on asbestos containing products.
Sec. 502. Naturally occurring asbestos.

     SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSE.

       (a) Findings.--Congress finds the following:
       (1) Millions of Americans have been exposed to forms of 
     asbestos that can have devastating health effects.
       (2) Various injuries can be caused by exposure to some 
     forms of asbestos, including pleural disease and some forms 
     of cancer.
       (3) The injuries caused by asbestos can have latency 
     periods of up to 40 years, and even limited exposure to some 
     forms of asbestos may result in injury in some cases.
       (4) Asbestos litigation has had a significant detrimental 
     effect on the country's economy, driving companies into 
     bankruptcy, diverting resources from those who are truly 
     sick, and endangering jobs and pensions.
       (5) The scope of the asbestos litigation crisis cuts across 
     every State and virtually every industry.
       (6) The United States Supreme Court has recognized that 
     Congress must act to create a more rational asbestos claims 
     system. In 1991, a Judicial Conference Ad Hoc Committee on 
     Asbestos Litigation, appointed by Chief Justice William 
     Rehnquist, found that the ``ultimate solution should be 
     legislation recognizing the national proportions of the 
     problem . . . and creating a national asbestos dispute 
     resolution scheme . . .''. The Court found in 1997 in Amchem 
     Products Inc. v. Windsor, 521 U.S. 591, 595 (1997), that 
     ``[t]he argument is sensibly made that a nationwide 
     administrative claims processing regime would provide the 
     most secure, fair, and efficient means of compensating 
     victims of asbestos exposure''. In 1999, the Court in Ortiz 
     v. Fibreboard Corp., 527 U.S. 819, 821 (1999), found that the 
     ``elephantine mass of asbestos cases . . . defies customary 
     judicial administration and calls for national legislation''. 
     That finding was again recognized in 2003 by the Court in 
     Norfolk & Western Railway Co. v. Ayers, 123 S. Ct. 1210 
     (2003).
       (7) This crisis, and its significant effect on the health 
     and welfare of the people of the United States, on interstate 
     and foreign commerce, and on the bankruptcy system, compels 
     Congress to exercise its power to regulate interstate 
     commerce and create this legislative solution in the form of 
     a national asbestos injury claims resolution program to 
     supersede all existing methods to compensate those injured by 
     asbestos, except as specified in this Act.
       (8) This crisis has also imposed a deleterious burden upon 
     the United States bankruptcy courts, which have assumed a 
     heavy burden of administering complicated and protracted 
     bankruptcies with limited personnel.
       (9) This crisis has devastated many communities across the 
     country, but hardest hit has been Libby, Montana, where 
     tremolite asbestos, 1 of the most deadly forms of asbestos, 
     was contained in the vermiculite ore mined from the area and 
     despite ongoing cleanup by the Environmental Protection 
     Agency, many still suffer from the deadly dust.
       (10) The asbestos found in Libby, Montana, tremolite 
     asbestos, has demonstrated an unusually high level of 
     toxicity, as compared to chrysotile asbestos. Diseases 
     contracted from this tremolite asbestos are unique and highly 
     progressive. These diseases typically manifest in a 
     characteristic pleural disease pattern, and often result in 
     severe impairment or death without radiographic interstitial 
     disease or typical chrysotile markers of radiographic 
     severity. According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and 
     Disease Registry previous studies by the National Institutes 
     of Occupational Safety and Health document significantly 
     increased rates of pulmonary abnormalities and disease 
     (asbestosis and lung cancer) among former workers.
       (11) Environmental Protection Agency supported studies have 
     determined that the raw vermiculite ore mined and milled in 
     Libby, Montana contained 21 to 26 percent asbestos, by 
     weight. The milled ore, resulting from the processing in 
     Libby, which was shipped out of Libby contained markedly 
     reduced percentages of asbestos. A 1982 Environmental 
     Protection Agency-supported study concluded that ore shipped 
     out of Libby contained 0.3 to 7 percent asbestos, by weight.
       (12) In Libby, Montana, exposure pathways are and were not 
     limited to the workplace, rather, for decades there has been 
     an unprecedented 24 hour per day contamination of the 
     community's homes, playgrounds, gardens, and community air, 
     such that the entire community of Libby, Montana, has been 
     designated a Superfund site and is listed on the 
     Environmental Protection Agency's National Priorities List.
       (13) These multiple exposure pathways have caused severe 
     asbestos disease and death not only in former workers at the 
     mine and milling facilities, but also in the workers' spouses 
     and children, and in community members who had no direct 
     contact

[[Page S5348]]

     with the mine. According to the Environmental Protection 
     Agency, some potentially important alternative pathways for 
     past asbestos exposure include elevated concentrations of 
     asbestos in ambient air and recreational exposures from 
     children playing in piles of vermiculite. Furthermore, the 
     Environmental Protection Agency has determined that current 
     potential pathways of exposure include vermiculite placed in 
     walls and attics as thermal insulation, vermiculite or ore 
     used as road bed material, ore used as ornamental 
     landscaping, and vermiculite or concentrated ore used as a 
     soil and garden amendment or aggregate in driveways.
       (14) The Environmental Protection Agency also concluded, 
     ``Asbestos contamination exists in a number of potential 
     source materials at multiple locations in and around the 
     residential and commercial area of Libby. . . While data are 
     not yet sufficient to perform reliable human-health risk 
     evaluations for all sources and all types of disturbance, it 
     is apparent that releases of fiber concentrations higher than 
     Occupational Safety and Health Administration standards may 
     occur in some cases . . . and that screening-level estimates 
     of lifetime excess cancer risk can exceed the upper-bound 
     risk range of 1E-04 usually used by the Environmental 
     Protection Agency for residents under a variety of exposure 
     scenarios. The occurrence of nonoccupational asbestos-related 
     disease that has been observed among Libby residents is 
     extremely unusual, and has not been associated with asbestos 
     mines elsewhere, suggesting either very high and prolonged 
     environmental exposures and/or increased toxicity of this 
     form of amphibole asbestos.''.
       (15) According to a November 2003 article from the Journal 
     Environmental Health Perspectives titled, Radiographic 
     Abnormalities and Exposure to Asbestos-Contaminated 
     Vermiculite in the Community of Libby, Montana, USA, Libby 
     residents who have evidence of ``no apparent exposure'', 
     i.e., did not work with asbestos, were not a family member of 
     a former worker, etc., had a greater rate of pleural 
     abnormalities (6.7 percent) than did those in control groups 
     or general populations found in other studies from other 
     states (which ranged from 0.2 percent to 4.6 percent). 
     ``Given the ubiquitous nature of vermiculite contamination in 
     Libby, along with historical evidence of elevated asbestos 
     concentrations in the air, it would be difficult to find 
     participants who could be characterized as unexposed.''.
       (16) Nothing in this Act is intended to increase the 
     Federal deficit or impose any burden on the taxpayer. The 
     Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation established under 
     this Act shall be privately funded by annual payments from 
     defendant participants that have been subject to asbestos 
     liability and their insurers. Section 406(b) of this Act 
     expressly provides that nothing in this Act shall be 
     construed to create any obligation of funding from the United 
     States or to require the United States to satisfy any claims 
     if the amounts in the Fund are inadequate. Any borrowing by 
     the Fund is limited to monies expected to be paid into the 
     Fund, and the Administrator shall have no fiscal authority 
     beyond the amount of private money coming into the Fund. This 
     Act provides the Administrator with broad enforcement 
     authority to pursue debts to the Fund owed by defendant 
     participants or insurer participants and their successors in 
     interest.
       (b) Purpose.--The purpose of this Act is to--
       (1) create a privately funded, publicly administered fund 
     to provide the necessary resources for a fair and efficient 
     system to resolve asbestos injury claims that will provide 
     compensation for legitimate present and future claimants of 
     asbestos exposure as provided in this Act;
       (2) provide compensation to those present and future 
     victims based on the severity of their injuries, while 
     establishing a system flexible enough to accommodate 
     individuals whose conditions worsens;
       (3) relieve the Federal and State courts of the burden of 
     the asbestos litigation; and
       (4) increase economic stability by resolving the asbestos 
     litigation crisis that has bankrupted companies with asbestos 
     liability, diverted resources from the truly sick, and 
     endangered jobs and pensions.

     SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

       In this Act, the following definitions shall apply:
       (1) Administrator.--The term ``Administrator'' means the 
     Administrator of the Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation 
     appointed under section 101(b).
       (2) Asbestos.--The term ``asbestos'' includes--
       (A) chrysotile;
       (B) amosite;
       (C) crocidolite;
       (D) tremolite asbestos;
       (E) winchite asbestos;
       (F) richterite asbestos;
       (G) anthophyllite asbestos;
       (H) actinolite asbestos;
       (I) asbestiform amphibole minerals;
       (J) any of the minerals listed under subparagraphs (A) 
     through (I) that has been chemically treated or altered, and 
     any asbestiform variety, type, or component thereof; and
       (K) asbestos-containing material, such as asbestos-
     containing products, automotive or industrial parts or 
     components, equipment, improvements to real property, and any 
     other material that contains asbestos in any physical or 
     chemical form.
       (3) Asbestos claim.--
       (A) In general.--The term ``asbestos claim'' means any 
     claim, premised on any theory, allegation, or cause of action 
     for damages or other relief presented in a civil action or 
     bankruptcy proceeding, directly, indirectly, or derivatively 
     arising out of, based on, or related to, in whole or part, 
     the health effects of exposure to asbestos, including loss of 
     consortium, wrongful death, and any derivative claim made by, 
     or on behalf of, any exposed person or any representative, 
     spouse, parent, child, or other relative of any exposed 
     person.
       (B) Exclusion.--The term does not include--
       (i) claims alleging damage or injury to tangible property;
       (ii) claims for benefits under a workers' compensation law 
     or veterans' benefits program;
       (iii) claims arising under any governmental or private 
     health, welfare, disability, death or compensation policy, 
     program or plan;
       (iv) claims arising under any employment contract or 
     collective bargaining agreement;
       (v) claims arising out of medical malpractice; or
       (vi) any claim arising under--

       (I) the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 
     12101 et seq.);
       (II) title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 
     2000e et seq.);
       (III) the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (29 
     U.S.C. 621 et seq.);
       (IV) the Equal Pay Act of 1963 (29 U.S.C. 206);
       (V) the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (29 U.S.C. 
     2601 et seq.);
       (VI) section 1979 of the Revised Statutes of the United 
     States (42 U.S.C. 1983); or
       (VII) the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 701 et 
     seq.).

       (4) Asbestos claimant.--The term ``asbestos claimant'' 
     means an individual who files a claim under section 113.
       (5) Civil action.--The term ``civil action'' means all 
     suits of a civil nature in State or Federal court, whether 
     cognizable as cases at law or in equity or in admiralty, but 
     does not include an action relating to any workers' 
     compensation law, or a proceeding for benefits under any 
     veterans' benefits program.
       (6) Collateral source compensation.--The term ``collateral 
     source compensation'' means the compensation that the 
     claimant received, or is entitled to receive, from a 
     defendant or an insurer of that defendant, or compensation 
     trust as a result of a final judgment or settlement for an 
     asbestos-related injury that is the subject of a claim filed 
     under section 113.
       (7) Eligible disease or condition.--The term ``eligible 
     disease or condition'' means the extent that an illness meets 
     the medical criteria requirements established under subtitle 
     C of title I.
       (8) Employers' liability act.--The term ``Act of April 22, 
     1908 (45 U.S.C. 51 et seq.), commonly known as the Employer's 
     Liability Act'' shall, for all purposes of this Act, include 
     the Act of June 5, 1920 (46 U.S.C. App. 688), commonly known 
     as the Jones Act, and the related phrase ``operations as a 
     common carrier by railroad'' shall include operations as an 
     employer of seamen.
       (9) Fund.--The term ``Fund'' means the Asbestos Injury 
     Claims Resolution Fund established under section 221.
       (10) Insurance receivership proceeding.--The term 
     ``insurance receivership proceeding'' means any State 
     proceeding with respect to a financially impaired or 
     insolvent insurer or reinsurer including the liquidation, 
     rehabilitation, conservation, supervision, or ancillary 
     receivership of an insurer under State law.
       (11) Law.--The term ``law'' includes all law, judicial or 
     administrative decisions, rules, regulations, or any other 
     principle or action having the effect of law.
       (12) Participant.--
       (A) In general.--The term ``participant'' means any person 
     subject to the funding requirements of title II, including--
       (i) any defendant participant subject to liability for 
     payments under subtitle A of that title;
       (ii) any insurer participant subject to a payment under 
     subtitle B of that title; and
       (iii) any successor in interest of a participant.
       (B) Exception.--
       (i) In general.--A defendant participant shall not include 
     any person protected from any asbestos claim by reason of an 
     injunction entered in connection with a plan of 
     reorganization under chapter 11 of title 11, United States 
     Code, that has been confirmed by a duly entered order or 
     judgment of a court that is no longer subject to any appeal 
     or judicial review, and the substantial consummation, as such 
     term is defined in section 1101(2) of title 11, United States 
     Code, of such plan of reorganization has occurred.
       (ii) Applicability.--Clause (i) shall not apply to a person 
     who may be liable under subtitle A of title II based on prior 
     asbestos expenditures related to asbestos claims that are not 
     covered by an injunction described under clause (i).
       (13) Person.--The term ``person''--
       (A) means an individual, trust, firm, joint stock company, 
     partnership, association, insurance company, reinsurance 
     company, or corporation; and
       (B) does not include the United States, any State or local 
     government, or subdivision thereof, including school 
     districts and any

[[Page S5349]]

     general or special function governmental unit established 
     under State law.
       (14) State.--The term ``State'' means any State of the 
     United States and also includes the District of Columbia, 
     Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, 
     the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and any other 
     territory or possession of the United States or any political 
     subdivision of any of the entities under this paragraph.
       (15) Substantially continues.--The term ``substantially 
     continues'' means that the business operations have not been 
     significantly modified by the change in ownership.
       (16) Successor in interest.--The term ``successor in 
     interest'' means any person that, in 1 or a series of 
     transactions, acquires all or substantially all of the assets 
     and properties (including, without limitation, under section 
     363(b) or 1123(b)(4) of title 11, United States Code), and 
     substantially continues the business operations, of a 
     participant. The factors to be considered in determining 
     whether a person is a successor in interest include--
       (A) retention of the same facilities or location;
       (B) retention of the same employees;
       (C) maintaining the same job under the same working 
     conditions;
       (D) retention of the same supervisory personnel;
       (E) continuity of assets;
       (F) production of the same product or offer of the same 
     service;
       (G) retention of the same name;
       (H) maintenance of the same customer base;
       (I) identity of stocks, stockholders, and directors between 
     the asset seller and the purchaser; or
       (J) whether the successor holds itself out as continuation 
     of previous enterprise, but expressly does not include 
     whether the person actually knew of the liability of the 
     participant under this Act.
       (17) Veterans' benefits program.--The term ``veterans' 
     benefits program'' means any program for benefits in 
     connection with military service administered by the 
     Veterans' Administration under title 38, United States Code.
       (18) Workers' compensation law.--The term ``workers' 
     compensation law''--
       (A) means a law respecting a program administered by a 
     State or the United States to provide benefits, funded by a 
     responsible employer or its insurance carrier, for 
     occupational diseases or injuries or for disability or death 
     caused by occupational diseases or injuries;
       (B) includes the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation 
     Act (33 U.S.C. 901 et seq.) and chapter 81 of title 5, United 
     States Code; and
       (C) does not include the Act of April 22, 1908 (45 U.S.C. 
     51 et seq.), commonly known as the Employers' Liability Act, 
     or damages recovered by any employee in a liability action 
     against an employer.
       (19) Class action trust.--The term ``class action trust'' 
     means a trust or similar entity established to hold assets 
     for the payment of asbestos claims asserted against a debtor 
     or participating defendant, under a settlement that--
       (A) is a settlement of class action claims under rule 23 of 
     the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure; and
       (B) has been approved by a final judgment of a United 
     States district court before the date of enactment of this 
     Act.
       (20) Debtor.--The term ``debtor''--
       (A) means--
       (i) a person that is subject to a case pending under a 
     chapter of title 11, United States Code, on the date of 
     enactment of this Act or at any time during the 1-year period 
     immediately preceding that date, irrespective of whether the 
     debtor's case under that title has been dismissed; and
       (ii) all of the direct or indirect majority-owned 
     subsidiaries of a person described under clause (i), 
     regardless of whether any such majority-owned subsidiary has 
     a case pending under title 11, United States Code; and
       (B) shall not include an entity--
       (i) subject to chapter 7 of title 11, United States Code, 
     if a final decree closing the estate shall have been entered 
     before the date of enactment of this Act; or
       (ii) subject to chapter 11 of title 11, United States Code, 
     if a plan of reorganization for such entity shall have been 
     confirmed by a duly entered order or judgment of a court that 
     is no longer subject to any appeal or judicial review, and 
     the substantial consummation, as such term is defined in 
     section 1101(2) of title 11, United States Code, of such plan 
     of reorganization has occurred.
       (21) Trust.--The term ``trust'' means any trust, as 
     described in sections 524(g)(2)(B)(i) or 524(h) of title 11, 
     United States Code, or established in conjunction with an 
     order issued under section 105 of title 11, United States 
     Code, established or formed under the terms of a chapter 11 
     plan of reorganization, which in whole or in part provides 
     compensation for asbestos claims.

                  TITLE I--ASBESTOS CLAIMS RESOLUTION

          Subtitle A--Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation

     SEC. 101. ESTABLISHMENT OF OFFICE OF ASBESTOS DISEASE 
                   COMPENSATION.

       (a) In General.--
       (1) Establishment.--There is established within the 
     Department of Labor the Office of Asbestos Disease 
     Compensation (hereinafter referred to in this Act as the 
     ``Office''), which shall be headed by an Administrator.
       (2) Purpose.--The purpose of the Office is to provide 
     timely, fair compensation, in the amounts and under the terms 
     specified in this Act, on a no-fault basis and in a 
     nonadversarial manner, to individuals whose health has been 
     adversely affected by exposure to asbestos.
       (3) Termination of the office.--The Office of Asbestos 
     Disease Compensation shall terminate effective not later than 
     12 months following certification by the Administrator that 
     the Fund has neither paid a claim in the previous 12 months 
     nor has debt obligations remaining to pay.
       (4) Expenses.--There shall be available from the Fund to 
     the Administrator such sums as are necessary for any and all 
     expenses associated with the Office of Asbestos Disease 
     Compensation and necessary to carry out the purposes of this 
     Act. Expenses covered should include--
       (A) management of the Fund;
       (B) personnel salaries and expenses, including retirement 
     and similar benefits;
       (C) the sums necessary for conducting the studies required 
     under this Act;
       (D) all administrative and legal expenses; and
       (E) any other sum that could be attributable to the Fund.
       (b) Appointment of Administrator.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator of the Office of 
     Asbestos Disease Compensation shall be appointed by the 
     President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. 
     The Administrator shall serve for a term of 5 years.
       (2) Reporting.--The Administrator shall report directly to 
     the Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Employment Standards 
     Administration.
       (c) Duties of Administrator.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall be responsible 
     for--
       (A) processing claims for compensation for asbestos-related 
     injuries and paying compensation to eligible claimants under 
     the criteria and procedures established under title I;
       (B) determining, levying, and collecting assessments on 
     participants under title II;
       (C) appointing or contracting for the services of such 
     personnel, making such expenditures, and taking any other 
     actions as may be necessary and appropriate to carry out the 
     responsibilities of the Office, including entering into 
     cooperative agreements with other Federal agencies or State 
     agencies and entering into contracts with nongovernmental 
     entities;
       (D) conducting such audits and additional oversight as 
     necessary to assure the integrity of the program;
       (E) managing the Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution Fund 
     established under section 221, including--
       (i) administering, in a fiduciary capacity, the assets of 
     the Fund for the primary purpose of providing benefits to 
     asbestos claimants and their beneficiaries;
       (ii) defraying the reasonable expenses of administering the 
     Fund;
       (iii) investing the assets of the Fund in accordance with 
     section 222(b);
       (iv) retaining advisers, managers, and custodians who 
     possess the necessary facilities and expertise to provide for 
     the skilled and prudent management of the Fund, to assist in 
     the development, implementation and maintenance of the Fund's 
     investment policies and investment activities, and to provide 
     for the safekeeping and delivery of the Fund's assets; and
       (v) borrowing amounts authorized by section 221(b) on 
     appropriate terms and conditions, including pledging the 
     assets of or payments to the Fund as collateral;
       (F) promulgating such rules, regulations, and procedures as 
     may be necessary and appropriate to implement the provisions 
     of this Act;
       (G) making such expenditures as may be necessary and 
     appropriate in the administration of this Act;
       (H) excluding evidence and disqualifying or debarring any 
     attorney, physician, provider of medical or diagnostic 
     services, including laboratories and others who provide 
     evidence in support of a claimant's application for 
     compensation where the Administrator determines that 
     materially false, fraudulent, or fictitious statements or 
     practices have been submitted or engaged in by such 
     individuals or entities; and
       (I) having all other powers incidental, necessary, or 
     appropriate to carrying out the functions of the Office.
       (2) Certain enforcements.--For each infraction relating to 
     paragraph (1)(H), the Administrator also may impose a civil 
     penalty not to exceed $10,000 on any person or entity found 
     to have submitted or engaged in a materially false, 
     fraudulent, or fictitious statement or practice under this 
     Act. The Administrator shall prescribe appropriate 
     regulations to implement paragraph (1)(H).
       (3) Selection of deputy administrators.--The Administrator 
     shall select a Deputy Administrator for Claims Administration 
     to carry out the Administrator's responsibilities under this 
     title and a Deputy Administrator for Fund Management to carry 
     out the Administrator's responsibilities under title II of 
     this Act. The Deputy Administrators shall report directly to 
     the Administrator and shall be in the Senior Executive 
     Service.
       (d) Expeditious Determinations.--The Administrator shall 
     prescribe rules to expedite claims for asbestos claimants 
     with terminal circumstances in order to expedite the payment 
     of such claims as soon as possible after

[[Page S5350]]

     startup of the Fund. The Administrator shall contract out the 
     processing of such claims.
       (e) Audit and Personnel Review Procedures.--The 
     Administrator shall establish audit and personnel review 
     procedures for evaluating the accuracy of eligibility 
     recommendations of agency and contract personnel.
       (f) Application of FOIA.--
       (1) In general.--Section 552 of title 5, United States Code 
     (commonly referred to as the Freedom of Information Act) 
     shall apply to the Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation 
     and the Asbestos Insurers Commission.
       (2) Confidentiality of financial records.--
       (A) In general.--Any person may label any record submitted 
     under this section as a confidential commercial or financial 
     record for the purpose of requesting exemption from 
     disclosure under section 552(b)(4) of title 5, United States 
     Code.
       (B) Duties of administrator and chairman of the asbestos 
     insurers commission.--The Administrator and Chairman of the 
     Asbestos Insurers Commission--
       (i) shall adopt procedures for--

       (I) handling submitted records marked confidential; and
       (II) protecting from disclosure records they determine to 
     be confidential commercial or financial information exempt 
     under section 552(b)(4) of title 5, United States Code; and

       (ii) may establish a pre-submission determination process 
     to protect from disclosure records on reserves and asbestos-
     related liabilities submitted by any defendant participant 
     that is exempt under section 552(b)(4) of title 5, United 
     States Code.
       (C) Review of complaints.--Nothing in this section shall 
     supersede or preempt the de novo review of complaints filed 
     under section 552(b)(4) of title 5, United States Code.
       (3) Confidentiality of medical records.--Any claimant may 
     designate any record submitted under this section as a 
     confidential personnel or medical file for purposes of 
     section 552 of title 5, United States Code. The Administrator 
     and the Chairman of the Asbestos Insurers Commission shall 
     adopt procedures for designating such records as 
     confidential.

     SEC. 102. ADVISORY COMMITTEE ON ASBESTOS DISEASE 
                   COMPENSATION.

       (a) Establishment.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 120 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall establish an 
     Advisory Committee on Asbestos Disease Compensation 
     (hereinafter the ``Advisory Committee'').
       (2) Composition and appointment.--The Advisory Committee 
     shall be composed of 20 members, appointed as follows--
       (A) The Majority and Minority Leaders of the Senate, the 
     Speaker of the House, and the Minority Leader of the House 
     shall each appoint 4 members. Of the 4--
       (i) 2 shall be selected to represent the interests of 
     claimants, at least 1 of whom shall be selected from among 
     individuals recommended by recognized national labor 
     federations; and
       (ii) 2 shall be selected to represent the interests of 
     participants, 1 of whom shall be selected to represent the 
     interests of the insurer participants and 1 of whom shall be 
     selected to represent the interests of the defendant 
     participants.
       (B) The Administrator shall appoint 4 members, who shall be 
     individuals with qualifications and expertise in occupational 
     or pulmonary medicine, occupational health, workers' 
     compensation programs, financial administration, investment 
     of funds, program auditing, or other relevant fields.
       (3) Qualifications.--All of the members described in 
     paragraph (2) shall have expertise or experience relevant to 
     the asbestos compensation program, including experience or 
     expertise in diagnosing asbestos-related diseases and 
     conditions, assessing asbestos exposure and health risks, 
     filing asbestos claims, administering a compensation or 
     insurance program, or as actuaries, auditors, or investment 
     managers. None of the members described in paragraph (2)(B) 
     shall be individuals who, for each of the 5 years before 
     their appointments, earned more than 15 percent of their 
     income by serving in matters related to asbestos litigation 
     as consultants or expert witnesses.
       (b) Duties.--The Advisory Committee shall advise the 
     Administrator on--
       (1) claims filing and claims processing procedures;
       (2) claimant assistance programs;
       (3) audit procedures and programs to ensure the quality and 
     integrity of the compensation program;
       (4) the development of a list of industries, occupations 
     and time periods for which there is a presumption of 
     substantial occupational exposure to asbestos;
       (5) recommended analyses or research that should be 
     conducted to evaluate past claims and to project future 
     claims under the program;
       (6) the annual report required to be submitted to Congress 
     under section 405; and
       (7) such other matters related to the implementation of 
     this Act as the Administrator considers appropriate.
       (c) Operation of the Committee.--
       (1) Each member of the Advisory Committee shall be 
     appointed for a term of 3 years, except that, of the members 
     first appointed--
       (A) 6 shall be appointed for a term of 1 year;
       (B) 7 shall be appointed for a term of 2 years; and
       (C) 7 shall be appointed for a term of 3 years, as 
     determined by the Administrator at the time of appointment.
       (2) Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring before 
     the expiration of the term shall be appointed only for the 
     remainder of such term.
       (3) The Administrator shall designate a Chairperson and 
     Vice Chairperson from among members of the Advisory Committee 
     appointed under subsection (a)(2)(B).
       (4) The Advisory Committee shall meet at the call of the 
     Chairperson or the majority of its members, and at a minimum 
     shall meet at least 4 times per year during the first 5 years 
     of the asbestos compensation program, and at least 2 times 
     per year thereafter.
       (5) The Administrator shall provide to the Committee such 
     information as is necessary and appropriate for the Committee 
     to carry out its responsibilities under this section. The 
     Administrator may, upon request of the Advisory Committee, 
     secure directly from any Federal, State, or local department 
     or agency such information as may be necessary and 
     appropriate to enable the Advisory Committee to carry out its 
     duties under this section. Upon request of the Administrator, 
     the head of such department or agency shall furnish such 
     information to the Advisory Committee.
       (6) The Administrator shall provide the Advisory Committee 
     with such administrative support as is reasonably necessary 
     to enable it to perform its functions.
       (d) Expenses.--Members of the Advisory Committee, other 
     than full-time employees of the United States, while 
     attending meetings of the Advisory Committee or while 
     otherwise serving at the request of the Administrator, and 
     while serving away from their homes or regular places of 
     business, shall be allowed travel and meal expenses, 
     including per diem in lieu of subsistence, as authorized by 
     section 5703 of title 5, United States Code, for individuals 
     in the Government serving without pay.

     SEC. 103. MEDICAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE.

       (a) In General.--The Administrator shall establish a 
     Medical Advisory Committee to provide expert advice regarding 
     medical issues arising under the statute.
       (b) Qualifications.--None of the members of the Medical 
     Advisory Committee shall be individuals who, for each of the 
     5 years before their appointments, earned more than 15 
     percent of their income by serving in matters related to 
     asbestos litigation as consultants or expert witnesses.

     SEC. 104. CLAIMANT ASSISTANCE.

       (a) Establishment.--Not later than 120 days after the 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall establish a 
     comprehensive asbestos claimant assistance program to--
       (1) publicize and provide information to potential 
     claimants about the availability of benefits for eligible 
     claimants under this Act, and the procedures for filing 
     claims and for obtaining assistance in filing claims;
       (2) provide assistance to potential claimants in preparing 
     and submitting claims, including assistance in obtaining the 
     documentation necessary to support a claim and any other 
     appropriate paralegal assistance;
       (3) respond to inquiries from claimants and potential 
     claimants;
       (4) provide training with respect to the applicable 
     procedures for the preparation and filing of claims to 
     persons who provide assistance or representation to 
     claimants; and
       (5) provide for the establishment of a website where 
     claimants may access all relevant forms and information.
       (b) Resource Centers.--The claimant assistance program 
     shall provide for the establishment of resource centers in 
     areas where there are determined to be large concentrations 
     of potential claimants. These centers shall be located, to 
     the extent feasible, in facilities of the Department of Labor 
     or other Federal agencies.
       (c) Contracts.--The claimant assistance program may be 
     carried out in part through contracts with labor 
     organizations, community-based organizations, and other 
     entities which represent or provide services to potential 
     claimants, except that such organizations may not have a 
     financial interest in the outcome of claims filed with the 
     Office.
       (d) Legal Assistance.--
       (1) In general.--As part of the program established under 
     subsection (a), the Administrator shall establish a legal 
     assistance program to provide assistance to asbestos 
     claimants concerning legal representation issues.
       (2) List of qualified attorneys.--As part of the program, 
     the Administrator shall maintain a roster of qualified 
     attorneys who have agreed to provide pro bono services to 
     asbestos claimants under rules established by the 
     Administrator. The claimants shall not be required to use the 
     attorneys listed on such roster.
       (3) Notice.--
       (A) Notice by administrator.--The Administrator shall 
     provide asbestos claimants with notice of, and information 
     relating to--
       (i) pro bono services for legal assistance available to 
     those claimants; and
       (ii) any limitations on attorneys fees for claims filed 
     under this title.
       (B) Notice by attorneys.--Before a person becomes a client 
     of an attorney with respect to an asbestos claim, that 
     attorney shall provide notice to that person of pro bono 
     services for legal assistance available for that claim.
       (e) Attorney's Fees.--
       (1) Limitation.--
       (A) In general.--Notwithstanding any contract, the 
     representative of an individual

[[Page S5351]]

     may not receive, for services rendered in connection with the 
     claim of an individual under the Fund, more than 5 percent of 
     a final monetary award made (whether by the Administrator 
     initially or as a result of administrative review) under the 
     Fund on such claim.
       (B) Review of proposed decision.--
       (i) Reasonable fee.--If an individual seeks a review of a 
     proposed decision in accordance with section 114(d) and is 
     awarded compensation, the representative of such individual 
     may, in lieu of seeking payment for services rendered subject 
     to the limitation described under subparagraph (A), obtain a 
     reasonable attorney's fee to be paid from any compensation 
     recovered by the individual.
       (ii) Calculation of reasonable fee.--Any fee obtained under 
     clause (i) shall be calculated by multiplying a reasonable 
     hourly rate by the number of hours reasonably expended on the 
     claim of the individual.
       (iii) Requirements for compensation.--A representative of 
     an individual shall not be eligible to receive a fee under 
     clause (i), unless--

       (I) such representative submits to the Administrator 
     detailed contemporaneous billing records for any work 
     actually performed in the course of representation of an 
     individual;
       (II) the Administrator finds, based on billing records 
     submitted by the representative under subclause (I), that the 
     work for which compensation is sought was reasonably 
     performed, and that the requested hourly fee is reasonable; 
     and
       (III) the claimant seeking a review of a proposed decision 
     has been awarded monetary compensation by the Administrator.

       (iv) No fee for no compensation.--If the claimant is denied 
     any compensation after review of the claim, the claimant's 
     representative may not receive a fee from either the claimant 
     or the Fund.
       (2) Penalty.--Any representative of an asbestos claimant 
     who violates this subsection shall be fined not more than the 
     greater of--
       (A) $5,000; or
       (B) twice the amount received by the representative for 
     services rendered in connection with each such violation.

     SEC. 105. PHYSICIANS PANELS.

       (a) Appointment.--The Administrator shall, in accordance 
     with section 3109 of title 5, United States Code, appoint 
     physicians with experience and competency in diagnosing 
     asbestos-related diseases to be available to serve on 
     Physicians Panels, as necessary to carry out this Act.
       (b) Formation of Panels.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall periodically 
     determine--
       (A) the number of Physicians Panels necessary for the 
     efficient conduct of the medical review process under section 
     121;
       (B) the number of Physicians Panels necessary for the 
     efficient conduct of the exceptional medical claims process 
     under section 121; and
       (C) the particular expertise necessary for each panel.
       (2) Expertise.--Each Physicians Panel shall be composed of 
     members having the particular expertise determined necessary 
     by the Administrator, randomly selected from among the 
     physicians appointed under subsection (a) having such 
     expertise.
       (3) Panel members.--Except as provided under subparagraph 
     (B), each Physicians Panel shall consist of 3 physicians, 2 
     of whom shall be designated to participate in each case 
     submitted to the Physicians Panel, and the third of whom 
     shall be consulted in the event of disagreement.
       (c) Qualifications.--To be eligible to serve on a 
     Physicians Panel under subsection (a), a person shall be--
       (1) a physician licensed in any State;
       (2) board-certified in pulmonary medicine, occupational 
     medicine, internal medicine, oncology, or pathology; and
       (3) an individual who, for each of the 5 years before and 
     during his or her appointment to a Physicians Panel, has 
     earned not more than 15 percent of his or her income as an 
     employee of a participating defendant or insurer or a law 
     firm representing any party in asbestos litigation or as a 
     consultant or expert witness in matters related to asbestos 
     litigation.
       (d) Duties.--Members of a Physicians Panel shall--
       (1) make such medical determinations as are required to be 
     made by Physicians Panels under section 121; and
       (2) perform such other functions as required under this 
     Act.
       (e) Compensation.--Notwithstanding any limitation otherwise 
     established under section 3109 of title 5, United States 
     Code, the Administrator shall be authorized to pay members of 
     a Physician Panel such compensation as is reasonably 
     necessary to obtain their services.
       (f) Federal Advisory Committee Act.--A Physicians Panel 
     established under this section shall not be subject to the 
     Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App. 2).

     SEC. 106. PROGRAM STARTUP.

       (a) Immediate Startup.--
       (1) In general.--Subject to section 101(d), the 
     Administrator may--
       (A) start receiving, reviewing, and deciding claims 
     immediately upon the date of enactment of this Act; and
       (B) reimburse the Department of Labor from the Fund for any 
     expense incurred--
       (i) before that date of enactment in preparation for 
     carrying out any of the responsibilities of the Administrator 
     under this Act; and
       (ii) during the 60-day period following that date of 
     enactment to carry out such responsibilities.
       (2) Interim regulations.--Not later than 90 days after the 
     date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall 
     promulgate interim regulations and procedures for the 
     processing of claims under this title and the operation of 
     the Fund under title II, including procedures for the 
     expediting of terminal health claims, and processing of 
     claims through the claims facility.
       (b) Interim Personnel and Contracting.--The Secretary of 
     Labor and the Assistant Secretary of Labor for the Employment 
     Standards Administration shall make available to the 
     Administrator on a temporary basis such personnel and other 
     resources as may be necessary to facilitate the expeditious 
     startup of the program. The Administrator may in addition 
     contract with individuals or entities having relevant 
     experience to assist in the expeditious startup of the 
     program including entering into contracts on an expedited or 
     sole source basis during the startup period for the purpose 
     of processing claims or providing financial analysis or 
     assistance. Such relevant experience shall include, but not 
     be limited to, experience with the review of workers' 
     compensation, occupational disease, or similar claims and 
     with financial matters relevant to the operation of the 
     program.
       (c) Terminal Health Claims.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall develop 
     procedures, as provided in section 106(f), to provide for an 
     expedited process to categorize, evaluate, and pay terminal 
     health claims. Such procedures, as provided in section 
     106(f), shall include, pending promulgation of final 
     regulations, adoption of interim regulations as needed for 
     processing of terminal health claims.
       (2) Eligible terminal health claims.--A claim shall qualify 
     for treatment as a terminal health claim if--
       (A) the claimant is living and provides a diagnosis of 
     mesothelioma meeting the requirements of section 121(d)(9);
       (B) the claimant is living and provides a credible 
     declaration or affidavit, from a diagnosing physician who has 
     examined the claimant within 120 days before the date of such 
     declaration or affidavit, that the physician has diagnosed 
     the claimant as being terminally ill from an asbestos-related 
     illness and having a life expectancy of less than 1 year due 
     to such asbestos-related illness; or
       (C) the claimant is the spouse or child of an eligible 
     terminal health claimant who--
       (i) was living when the claim was filed with the Fund, or 
     if before the implementation of interim regulations for the 
     filing of claims with the Fund, on the date of enactment of 
     this Act;
       (ii) has since died from a malignant disease or condition; 
     and
       (iii) has not received compensation from the Fund for the 
     disease or condition for which the claim was filed.
       (3) Additional terminal health claims.--The Administrator 
     may, in final regulations promulgated under section 101(c), 
     designate additional categories of claims that qualify as 
     terminal health claims under this subsection except that 
     exceptional medical claims may not proceed.
       (4) Claims facility.--To facilitate the prompt payment of 
     terminal health claims prior to the Fund being certified as 
     operational, the Administrator shall contract with a claims 
     facility, which applying the medical criteria of section 121, 
     shall process and pay claims in accordance with section 
     106(f)(2). The processing and payment of claims shall be 
     subject to regulations promulgated under this Act.
       (5) Authorization for contracts with claims facilities.--
     The Administrator may enter into contracts with a claims 
     facility for the processing of claims (except for exceptional 
     medical claims) in accordance with this title.
       (d) Prioritization of Claims.--The Administrator shall, in 
     final regulations promulgated under section 101(c), designate 
     categories of claims to be handled on an expedited basis. The 
     Administrator shall prioritize the processing and payment of 
     health claims involving claimants with the most serious 
     health claims. The Administrator shall also prioritize claims 
     from claimants who face extreme financial hardship.
       (e) Interim Administrator.--Until an Administrator is 
     appointed and confirmed under section 101(b), the 
     responsibilities of the Administrator under this Act shall be 
     performed by the Assistant Secretary of Labor for the 
     Employment Standards Administration, who shall have all the 
     authority conferred by this Act on the Administrator and who 
     shall be deemed to be the Administrator for purposes of this 
     Act. Before final regulations being promulgated relating to 
     claims processing, the Interim Administrator may prioritize 
     claims processing, without regard to the time requirements 
     prescribed in subtitle B of this title, based on severity of 
     illness and likelihood that exposure to asbestos was a 
     substantial contributing factor for the illness in question.
       (f) Stay of Claims; Return to Tort System.--
       (1) Stay of claims.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     this Act, any asbestos claim pending on the date of enactment 
     of this Act, other than a claim to which section 403(d)(2) 
     applies or as otherwise provided in section 402(f), stayed.
       (2) Terminal health claims.--

[[Page S5352]]

       (A) Procedures for settlement of terminal health claims.--
       (i) In general.--Any person that has filed a terminal 
     health claim, as provided under subsection (c)(2), seeking a 
     judgment or order for monetary damages in any Federal or 
     State court before the date of the enactment of this Act, 
     shall seek a settlement in accordance with this paragraph. 
     Any person with a terminal health claim, as provided under 
     subsection (c)(2), that arises after such date of enactment 
     shall seek a settlement in accordance with this paragraph.
       (ii) Filing.--

       (I) In general.--At any time before the Fund or claims 
     facility is certified as operational and paying terminal 
     health claims at a reasonable rate, any person with a 
     terminal health claim as described under clause (i) shall 
     file a notice of their intent to seek a settlement or shall 
     file their exigent health claim with the Administrator or 
     claims facility. Filing of an exigent health claim with the 
     Administrator or claims facility may serve as notice of 
     intent to seek a settlement.
       (II) Exception.--Any person who seeks compensation for an 
     exigent health claim from a trust in accordance with section 
     402(f) shall not be eligible to seek a settlement or 
     settlement offer under this paragraph.

       (iii) Terminal health claim information.--To file a 
     terminal health claim, each individual shall provide all of 
     the following information:

       (I) The amount received or entitled to be received as a 
     result of all collateral source compensation under section 
     134, and copies of all settlement agreements and related 
     documents sufficient to show the accuracy of that amount.

       (II) A description of any claims for compensation for an 
     asbestos related injury or disease filed by the claimant with 
     any trust or class action trust, and the status or 
     disposition or any such claims.
       (III) All information that the claimant would be required 
     to provide to the Administrator in support of a claim under 
     sections 113(c) and 121.
       (IV) A certification by the claimant that the information 
     provided is true and complete. The certification provided 
     under this subclause shall be subject to the same penalties 
     for false or misleading statements that would be applicable 
     with regard to information provided to the Administrator or 
     claims facility in support of a claim.
       (V) For terminal health claims arising after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the claimant shall identify each 
     defendant that would be an appropriate defendant in a civil 
     action seeking damages for the asbestos claim of the 
     claimant. Identification of all potential participants shall 
     be made in good faith by the claimant.

       (iv) Timing.--A claimant who has filed a notice of their 
     intent to seek a settlement under clause (ii) shall within 60 
     days after filing notice provide to the Administrator or 
     claims facility the information required under clause (iii). 
     If a claimant has filed an exigent health claim under clause 
     (ii) the Administrator shall provide all affected defendants 
     the information required under clause (iii).
       (v) Website.--

       (I) Posting.--The Administrator or claims facility shall 
     post the information described in subclause (II) to a secure 
     website, accessible on a passcode-protected basis to 
     participants.
       (II) Required information.--The website established under 
     subclause (I) shall contain a listing of--

       (aa) each claimant that has filed a notice of intent to 
     seek a settlement or claim under this clause;
       (bb) the name of such claimant; and
       (cc) if applicable--

       (AA) the name of the court where such claim was filed;
       (BB) the case or docket number of such claim; and
       (CC) the date such claim was filed.
       (III) Prohibitions.--The website established under 
     subclause (I) shall not contain specific health or medical 
     information or social security numbers.
       (IV) Participant access.--A participant's access to the 
     website established under subclause (I) shall be limited on a 
     need to know basis, and participants shall not disclose or 
     sell data, or retain data for purposes other than paying an 
     asbestos claim.
       (V) Violations.--Any person or other entity that violates 
     any provision of this clause, including by breaching any data 
     posted on the website, shall be subject to an injunction, or 
     civil penalties, or both.

       (vi) Administrator or claims facility certification of 
     settlement.--

       (I) Determination.--Within 60 days after the information 
     under clause (iii) is provided, the Administrator or claims 
     facility shall determine whether or not the claim meets the 
     requirements of a terminal health claim.
       (II) Requirements met.--If the Administrator or claims 
     facility determines that the claim meets the requirements of 
     a terminal health claim, the Administrator or claims facility 
     shall immediately--

       (aa) issue and serve on all parties a certification of 
     eligibility of such claim;
       (bb) determine the value of such claim under the Fund by 
     subtracting from the amount in section 131 the total amount 
     of collateral source compensation received by the claimant; 
     and
       (cc) pay the award of compensation to the claimant under 
     clause (xiii).

       (III) Requirements not met.--If the requirements under 
     clause (iii) are not met, the claimant shall have 30 days to 
     perfect the claim. If the claimant fails to perfect the claim 
     within that 30-day period or the Administrator or claims 
     facility determines that the claim does not meet the 
     requirements of a terminal health claim, the claim shall not 
     be eligible to proceed under this paragraph. A claimant may 
     appeal any decision issued by a claims facility with the 
     Administrator in accordance with section 114.

       (vii) Failure to certify.--If the Administrator or claims 
     facility is unable to process the claim and does not make a 
     determination regarding the certification of the claim as 
     required under clause (vi), the Administrator or claims 
     facility shall within 10 days after the end of the 60-day 
     period referred to under clause (vi)(I) provide notice of the 
     failure to act to the claimant and the defendants in the 
     pending Federal or State court action or the defendants 
     identified under clause (iii)(IV). If the Administrator or 
     claims facility fails to provide such notice within 10 days, 
     the claimant may elect to provide the notice to the affected 
     defendants to prompt a settlement offer. The Administrator or 
     claims facility shall list all terminal health claims for 
     which notice has been provided under this clause on the 
     website established under clause (v).
       (viii) Failure to pay.--If the Administrator or claims 
     facility does not pay the award as required under clause 
     (xiii), the Administrator shall refer the certified claim 
     within 10 days as a certified terminal health claim to the 
     defendants in the pending Federal and State court action or 
     to the potential defendants identified under clause (iii)(IV) 
     for terminal claims arising after the date of enactment of 
     this Act. The Administrator or claims facility shall list all 
     terminal health claims for which notice has been provided 
     under this clause on the website established under clause 
     (v).
       (ix) Settlement offer.--Any participant or participants 
     may, within 30 days after receipt of such notice as provided 
     under clause (vii) or (viii), file and serve on all parties 
     and the Administrator a good faith settlement offer in an 
     aggregate amount not to exceed the total amount to which the 
     claimant would receive under section 131. If the aggregate 
     amount offered by all participants exceeds the award 
     determined by the Administrator, all offers shall be deemed 
     reduced pro rata until the aggregate amount equals the award 
     amount. An acceptance of such settlement offer for claims 
     pending before the date of enactment of this Act shall be 
     subject to approval by the trial judge or authorized 
     magistrate in the court where the claim is pending. The court 
     shall approve any such accepted offer within 20 days after a 
     request, unless there is evidence of bad faith or fraud. No 
     court approval is necessary if the terminal health claim was 
     certified by the Administrator or claims facility under 
     clause (vi).
       (x) Acceptance or rejection.--Within 20 days after receipt 
     of the settlement offer, or the amended settlement offer, the 
     claimant shall either accept or reject such offer in writing. 
     If the amount of the settlement offer made by the 
     Administrator, claims facility, or participants equals 100 
     percent of what the claimant would receive under the Fund, 
     the claimant shall accept such settlement in writing.
       (xi) Opportunity to cure.--If the settlement offer is 
     rejected for being less than what the claimant would receive 
     under the Fund, the participants shall have 10 business days 
     to make an amended offer. If the amended offer equals 100 
     percent of what the claimant would receive under the Fund, 
     the claimant shall accept such settlement offer in writing. 
     If the settlement offer is again rejected as less than what 
     the claimant would receive under the Fund or if participants 
     fail to make an amended offer, the claimant shall recover 150 
     percent of what the claimant would receive under the Fund. If 
     the amount of the amended settlement offer made by the 
     Administrator, claims facility, or participants equals 150 
     percent of what the claimant would receive under the Fund, 
     the claimant shall accept such settlement in writing.
       (xii) Payment schedule.--

       (I) Mesothelioma claimants.--For mesothelioma claimants--

       (aa) an initial payment of 50 percent shall be made within 
     30 days after the date the settlement is accepted and the 
     second and final payment shall be made 6 months after date 
     the settlement is accepted; or
       (bb) if the Administrator determines that the payment 
     schedule would impose a severe financial hardship on the 
     Fund, or if the court determines that the settlement offer 
     would impose a severe financial hardship on the participant, 
     the payments may be extended 50 percent in 6 months and 50 
     percent 11 months after the date the settlement offer is 
     accepted.

       (II) Other terminal claimants.--For other terminal 
     claimants, as defined under section 106(c)(2)(B) and (C)--

       (aa) the initial payment of 50 percent shall be made within 
     6 months after the date the settlement is accepted and the 
     second and final payment shall be made 12 months after date 
     the settlement is accepted; or
       (bb) if the Administrator determines that the payment 
     schedule would impose a severe financial hardship on the 
     Fund, or if the court determines that the settlement offer 
     would impose a severe financial hardship on the participants, 
     the payments may be extended 50 percent within 1 year after 
     the

[[Page S5353]]

     date the settlement offer is accepted and 50 percent in 2 
     years after date the settlement offer is accepted.

       (III) Release.--Once a claimant has received final payment 
     of the accepted settlement offer, and penalty payment if 
     applicable, the claimant shall release any outstanding 
     asbestos claims.

       (xiii) Recovery of costs.--

       (I) In general.--Any participant whose settlement offer is 
     accepted may recover the cost of such settlement by deducting 
     from the participant's next and subsequent contributions to 
     the Fund the full amount of the payment made by such 
     participant to the terminal health claimant, unless the 
     Administrator finds, on the basis of clear and convincing 
     evidence, that the participant's offer is not in good faith. 
     Any such payment shall be considered a payment to the Fund 
     for purposes of section 404(e)(1) and in response to the 
     payment obligations imposed on participants in title II.
       (II) Reimbursement.--Notwithstanding subclause (I), if the 
     deductions from the participant's next and subsequent 
     contributions to the Fund do not fully recover the cost of 
     such payments on or before its third annual contribution to 
     the Fund, the Fund shall reimburse such participant for such 
     remaining cost not later than 6 months after the date of the 
     third scheduled Fund contribution.

       (xiv) Failure to make offer.--If participants fail to make 
     a settlement offer within the 30-day period described under 
     clause (ix) or make amended offers within the 10 business day 
     cure period described under clause (xi), the claimant shall 
     be entitled to recover 150 percent of what the claimant would 
     receive under the Fund before the stay being lifted under 
     subparagraph (B).
       (xv) Failure to pay.--If a participant fails to pay an 
     accepted settlement offer within the payment schedule under 
     clause (xii), the claimant shall be entitled to recover 150 
     percent of what the claimant would receive under the Fund 
     before the stay being lifted under subparagraph (B). If the 
     stay is lifted under subparagraph (B) the claimant may seek a 
     judgment or order for monetary damages from the court where 
     the case is currently pending or the appropriate Federal or 
     State court for claims arising after the date of enactment of 
     this Act.
       (B) Stay terminated and reversion to court.--If 9 months 
     after a terminal health claim has been filed under 
     subparagraph (A), a claimant has not received a settlement 
     under subparagraph (A)(xii) and the Administrator has not 
     certified to Congress that the Fund or claims facility is 
     operational and paying terminal health claims at a reasonable 
     rate, the stay of claim provided under paragraph (1) shall be 
     lifted and such terminal health claimant, may immediately 
     seek a judgment or order for monetary damages from the court 
     where the case is currently pending or the appropriate 
     Federal or State court for claims arising after the date of 
     enactment of this Act. If a claimant has failed to file a 
     claim or notice of intent to seek a settlement, as required 
     under subparagraph (A)(ii), the provisions of this 
     subparagraph shall not apply.
       (C) Credit of claim and effect of operational fund.--
       (i) Collateral source.--If an asbestos claim is pursued in 
     Federal or State court in accordance with this paragraph, any 
     recovery by the claimant shall be a collateral source 
     compensation for purposes of section 134.
       (ii) Recovery of costs.--Any participant may recover the 
     cost of any claim continued in court for up to the amount the 
     claimant would receive under the Fund by deducting from the 
     participant's next and subsequent contributions to the Fund 
     for that amount of the payment made by such participant to 
     the terminal health claimant.
       (3) Pursual of nonterminal asbestos claims in federal or 
     state court.--
       (A) In general.--
       (i) Pursual of claims.--Notwithstanding any other provision 
     of this Act, if not later than 24 months after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator cannot certify to 
     Congress that the Fund is operational and paying all valid 
     claims at a reasonable rate, any person with a nonterminal 
     asbestos claim stayed, except for any person whose claim does 
     not exceed a Level I claim, may pursue that claim in the 
     Federal district court (if the claim is otherwise within the 
     jurisdiction of the court) or State court located within--

       (I) the State of residence of the claimant; or
       (II) the State in which the asbestos exposure occurred.

       (ii) Rule of construction.--This subparagraph shall not be 
     construed as creating a new Federal cause of action.
       (B) Defendants not found.--If any defendant cannot be found 
     in the State described under subparagraph (A) (i) or (ii), 
     the claim may be pursued in the Federal district court or 
     State court located within any State in which the defendant 
     may be found.
       (C) Determination of most appropriate forum.--If a person 
     alleges that the asbestos exposure occurred in more than 1 
     county (or Federal district), the trial court shall determine 
     which State and county (or Federal district) is the most 
     appropriate forum for the claim. If the court determines that 
     another forum would be the most appropriate forum for a 
     claim, the court shall dismiss the claim. Any otherwise 
     applicable statute of limitations shall be tolled beginning 
     on the date the claim was filed and ending on the date the 
     claim is dismissed under this subparagraph.
       (D) State venue requirements.--Nothing in this paragraph 
     shall preempt or supersede any State law relating to venue 
     requirements within that State which are more restrictive.
       (E) Credit of claim and effect of operational or 
     nonoperational fund.--
       (i) Credit of claim.--If an asbestos claim is pursued in 
     Federal or State court in accordance with this paragraph, any 
     recovery by the claimant shall be a collateral source 
     compensation for purposes of section 134.
       (ii) Operational certification.--Operational certification 
     shall be a filing in the Federal Register confirming that the 
     Fund is capable of operating and paying all valid asbestos 
     claims at a reasonable rate.
       (iii) Operational preconditions.--

       (I) The Administrator may not issue a operational 
     certification until--

       (aa) 60 days after the funding allocation information 
     required under section 221(e) has been published in the 
     Federal Register; and
       (bb) insurers subject to section 212(a)(3) submit their 
     names and information to the Administrator within 30 days 
     after the date of enactment of this Act and 60 days after the 
     Administrator publishes such information in the Federal 
     Register.
       (iv) Operational fund.--If the Administrator issues an 
     operational certification and notifies Congress that the Fund 
     has become operational and paying all valid asbestos claims 
     at a reasonable rate, any nonterminal asbestos claim in a 
     civil action in Federal or State court that is not on trial 
     before a jury which has been impaneled and presentation of 
     evidence has commenced, but before its deliberation, or 
     before a judge and is at the presentation of evidence shall 
     be deemed a reinstated claim against the Fund and the civil 
     action before the Federal or State court shall be null and 
     void.
       (v) Nonoperational fund.--Notwithstanding any other 
     provision of this Act, if the Administrator subsequently 
     issues a nonoperational certification and notifies Congress 
     that the Fund is unable to become operational and pay all 
     valid asbestos claims at a reasonable rate, all asbestos 
     claims have been stayed or not filed may be filed or 
     reinstated in the appropriate Federal or State court.
       (4) Reservation of rights.--Except as otherwise provided in 
     this Act, participation in the offer and settlement process 
     under this subsection shall not affect or prejudice any 
     rights or defenses a party might have in any litigation.

     SEC. 107. AUTHORITY OF THE ADMINISTRATOR.

       The Administrator, on any matter within the jurisdiction of 
     the Administrator under this Act, may--
       (1) issue subpoenas for and compel the attendance of 
     witnesses within a radius of 200 miles;
       (2) administer oaths;
       (3) examine witnesses;
       (4) require the production of books, papers, documents, and 
     other evidence; and
       (5) request assistance from other Federal agencies with the 
     performance of the duties of the Administrator under this 
     Act.

          Subtitle B--Asbestos Disease Compensation Procedures

     SEC. 111. ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS OF ELIGIBLE CLAIM.

       To be eligible for an award under this Act for an asbestos-
     related disease or injury, an individual shall--
       (1) file a claim in a timely manner in accordance with 
     sections 106(f)(2) and 113; and
       (2) prove, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the 
     claimant suffers from an eligible disease or condition, as 
     demonstrated by evidence that meets the requirements 
     established under subtitle C.

     SEC. 112. GENERAL RULE CONCERNING NO-FAULT COMPENSATION.

       An asbestos claimant shall not be required to demonstrate 
     that the asbestos-related injury for which the claim is being 
     made resulted from the negligence or other fault of any other 
     person.

     SEC. 113. FILING OF CLAIMS.

       (a) Who May Submit.--
       (1) In general.--Any individual who has suffered from a 
     disease or condition that is believed to meet the 
     requirements established under subtitle C (or the personal 
     representative of the individual, if the individual is 
     deceased or incompetent) may file a claim with the Office for 
     an award with respect to such injury.
       (2) Definition.--In this Act, the term ``personal 
     representative'' shall have the same meaning as that term is 
     defined in section 104.4 of title 28 of the Code of Federal 
     Regulations, as in effect on December 31, 2004.
       (3) Limitation.--A claim may not be filed by any person 
     seeking contribution or indemnity.
       (4) Effect of multiple injuries.--
       (A) In general.--A claimant who receives an award for an 
     eligible disease or condition shall not be precluded from 
     submitting claims for and receiving additional awards under 
     this title for any higher disease level for which the 
     claimant becomes eligible, subject to appropriate setoffs as 
     provided under section 134.
       (B) Libby, montana claims.--
       (i) In general.--Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), if a 
     Libby, Montana claimant worsens in condition, as measured by 
     pulmonary function tests, such that a claimant qualifies for 
     a higher nonmalignant level, the claimant shall be eligible 
     for an additional award, at the appropriate level, offset by 
     any award previously paid under this Act,

[[Page S5354]]

     such that a claimant would qualify for Level IV if the 
     claimant satisfies section 121(f)(8), and would qualify for 
     Level V if the claimant provides--

       (I) a diagnosis of bilateral asbestos related nonmalignant 
     disease;
       (II) evidence of TLC or FVC less than 60 percent; and
       (III) supporting medical documentation establishing 
     asbestos exposure as a substantial contributing factor in 
     causing the pulmonary condition in question, and excluding 
     more likely causes of that pulmonary condition.

       (ii) Subsequent malignant disease.--If a Libby, Montana, 
     claimant develops malignant disease, such that the claimant 
     qualifies for Level VI, VII, VIII, or IX, subparagraph (A) 
     shall apply.
       (b) Statute of Limitations.--
       (1) In general.--If a claim is not filed with the Office 
     within the limitations period specified in this subsection 
     for that category of claim, such claim shall be extinguished, 
     and any recovery thereon shall be prohibited.
       (2) Initial claims.--An initial claim for an award under 
     this Act shall be filed within 5 years after the date on 
     which the claimant first received a medical diagnosis and 
     medical test results sufficient to satisfy the criteria for 
     the disease level for which the claimant is seeking 
     compensation.
       (3) Claims for additional awards.--
       (A) Nonmalignant diseases.--If a claimant has previously 
     filed a timely initial claim for compensation for any 
     nonmalignant disease level, there shall be no limitations 
     period applicable to the filing of claims by the claimant for 
     additional awards for higher disease levels based on the 
     progression of the nonmalignant disease.
       (B) Malignant diseases.--Regardless of whether the claimant 
     has previously filed a claim for compensation for any other 
     disease level, a claim for compensation for a malignant 
     disease level shall be filed within 5 years after the 
     claimant first obtained a medical diagnosis and medical test 
     results sufficient to satisfy the criteria for the malignant 
     disease level for which the claimant is seeking compensation.
       (4) Effect on pending claims.--
       (A) In general.--Subject to subparagraphs (C) and (D), if 
     an asbestos claim that was timely filed within 10 years 
     before the date of enactment of this Act is pending as of 
     that date and is preempted under section 403(e), a claim 
     under this Act for the same disease or condition may be filed 
     with the Office under this section not later than 5 years 
     after such date of enactment.
       (B) Veterans.--For purposes of subparagraph (A), any person 
     with a timely filed asbestos claim shall include any person 
     who--
       (i) is a veteran, as that term is defined under section 
     101(2) of title 38, United States Code; and
       (ii) on the date of enactment of this Act--

       (I) is receiving benefits for disability, caused by 
     exposure to asbestos, under sections 1110 (wartime 
     disability), 1131 (peacetime disability), or 3102 (training 
     and rehabilitation) of title 38, United States Code; or
       (II) has submitted an application for such benefits to the 
     Department of Veterans Affairs that is pending or is on 
     administrative or judicial appeal.

       (C) Special rule.--For purposes of this paragraph, a claim 
     shall not be treated as pending with a trust established 
     under title 11, United States Code, solely because a claimant 
     whose claim was previously compensated by the trust has or 
     alleges--
       (i) a noncontingent right to the payment of future 
     installments of a fixed award; or
       (ii) a contingent right to recover some additional amount 
     from the trust on the occurrence of a future event, such as 
     the reevaluation of the trust's funding adequacy or projected 
     claims experience.
       (D) Dormant claims.--A claimant shall have the benefit of 
     the special limitations period under subparagraph (A) only if 
     the claimant provides documentation that the claimant has 
     filed a pleading, served a discovery response or request for 
     discovery, or taken other action to prosecute the pending 
     asbestos claim within the 3-year period ending May 25, 2006, 
     except that the failure to take such action to prosecute the 
     pending asbestos claim shall not preclude the application of 
     the special limitations period under subparagraph (A) if the 
     claimant shows either--
       (i) that prosecution of the claim was stayed during all or 
     part of the 3-year period ending May 25, 2006, by court order 
     or operation of law; or
       (ii) that the claimant has taken reasonable steps to 
     prosecute the claim within the 3-year period ending May 25, 
     2006, and that the period of inactivity is the result of the 
     ordinary, generally applicable procedures or practices of the 
     court in which such asbestos claim was pending.
       (c) Required Information.--A claim filed under subsection 
     (a) shall be in such form, and contain such information in 
     such detail, as the Administrator shall by regulation 
     prescribe. At a minimum, a claim shall include--
       (1) the name, social security number, gender, date of 
     birth, and, if applicable, date of death of the claimant;
       (2) information relating to the identity of dependents and 
     beneficiaries of the claimant;
       (3) an employment history sufficient to establish required 
     asbestos exposure, accompanied by social security or other 
     payment records or a signed release permitting access to such 
     records;
       (4) a description of the asbestos exposure of the claimant, 
     including, to the extent known, information on the site, or 
     location of exposure, and duration and intensity of exposure;
       (5) a description of the tobacco product use history of the 
     claimant, including frequency and duration;
       (6) an identification and description of the asbestos-
     related diseases or conditions of the claimant, accompanied 
     by a written report by the claimant's physician with medical 
     diagnoses and x-ray films, and other test results necessary 
     to establish eligibility for an award under this Act;
       (7) a description of any prior or pending civil action or 
     other claim brought by the claimant for asbestos-related 
     injury or any other pulmonary, parenchymal, or pleural 
     injury, including an identification of any recovery of 
     compensation or damages through settlement, judgment, or 
     otherwise; and
       (8) for any claimant who asserts that he or she is a 
     nonsmoker or an ex-smoker, as defined in section 131, for 
     purposes of an award under Malignant Level VI, Malignant 
     Level VII, or Malignant Level VIII, evidence to support the 
     assertion of nonsmoking or ex-smoking, including relevant 
     medical records.
       (d) Date of Filing.--A claim shall be considered to be 
     filed on the date that the claimant mails the claim to the 
     Office, as determined by postmark, or on the date that the 
     claim is received by the Office, whichever is the earliest 
     determinable date.
       (e) Incomplete Claims.--If a claim filed under subsection 
     (a) is incomplete, the Administrator shall notify the 
     claimant of the information necessary to complete the claim 
     and inform the claimant of such services as may be available 
     through the Claimant Assistance Program established under 
     section 104 to assist the claimant in completing the claim. 
     Any time periods for the processing of the claim shall be 
     suspended until such time as the claimant submits the 
     information necessary to complete the claim. If such 
     information is not received within 1 year after the date of 
     such notification, the claim shall be dismissed.

     SEC. 114. ELIGIBILITY DETERMINATIONS AND CLAIM AWARDS.

       (a) In General.--
       (1) Review of claims.--The Administrator shall, in 
     accordance with this section, determine whether each claim 
     filed under the Fund or claims facility satisfies the 
     requirements for eligibility for an award under this Act and, 
     if so, the value of the award. In making such determinations, 
     the Administrator shall consider the claim presented by the 
     claimant, the factual and medical evidence submitted by the 
     claimant in support of the claim, the medical determinations 
     of any Physicians Panel to which a claim is referred under 
     section 121, and the results of such investigation as the 
     Administrator may deem necessary to determine whether the 
     claim satisfies the criteria for eligibility established by 
     this Act.
       (2) Additional evidence.--The Administrator may request the 
     submission of medical evidence in addition to the minimum 
     requirements of section 113(c) if necessary or appropriate to 
     make a determination of eligibility for an award, in which 
     case the cost of obtaining such additional information or 
     testing shall be borne by the Office.
       (b) Proposed Decisions.--Not later than 90 days after the 
     filing of a claim, the Administrator shall provide to the 
     claimant (and the claimant's representative) a proposed 
     decision accepting or rejecting the claim in whole or in part 
     and specifying the amount of the proposed award, if any. The 
     proposed decision shall be in writing, shall contain findings 
     of fact and conclusions of law, and shall contain an 
     explanation of the procedure for obtaining review of the 
     proposed decision.
       (c) Payments if No Timely Proposed Decision.--If the 
     Administrator has received a complete claim and, after the 
     Fund has been certified subject to section 106(f)(3)(E) has 
     not provided a proposed decision to the claimant under 
     subsection (b) within 180 days after the filing of the claim, 
     the claim shall be deemed accepted and the claimant shall be 
     entitled to payment under section 133(a)(2). If the 
     Administrator subsequently rejects the claim the claimant 
     shall receive no further payments under section 133. If the 
     Administrator subsequently rejects the claim in part, the 
     Administrator shall adjust future payments due the claimant 
     under section 133 accordingly. In no event may the 
     Administrator recover amounts properly paid under this 
     section from a claimant.
       (d) Review of Proposed Decisions.--
       (1) Right to hearing.--
       (A) In general.--Any claimant not satisfied with a proposed 
     decision of the Administrator under subsection (b) shall be 
     entitled, on written request made within 90 days after the 
     date of the issuance of the decision, to a hearing on the 
     claim of that claimant before a representative of the 
     Administrator. At the hearing, the claimant shall be entitled 
     to present oral evidence and written testimony in further 
     support of that claim.
       (B) Conduct of hearing.--When practicable, the hearing will 
     be set at a time and place convenient for the claimant. In 
     conducting the hearing, the representative of the 
     Administrator shall not be bound by common law or statutory 
     rules of evidence, by technical or formal rules of procedure, 
     or by section 554 of title 5, United States Code, except as 
     provided by this Act, but shall conduct the hearing in such 
     manner as to best ascertain the rights of the claimant. For 
     this purpose, the representative shall receive

[[Page S5355]]

     such relevant evidence as the claimant adduces and such other 
     evidence as the representative determines necessary or useful 
     in evaluating the claim.
       (C) Request for subpoenas.--
       (i) In general.--A claimant may request a subpoena but the 
     decision to grant or deny such a request is within the 
     discretion of the representative of the Administrator. The 
     representative may issue subpoenas for the attendance and 
     testimony of witnesses, and for the production of books, 
     records, correspondence, papers, or other relevant documents. 
     Subpoenas are issued for documents only if such documents are 
     relevant and cannot be obtained by other means, and for 
     witnesses only where oral testimony is the best way to 
     ascertain the facts.
       (ii) Request.--A claimant may request a subpoena only as 
     part of the hearing process. To request a subpoena, the 
     requester shall--

       (I) submit the request in writing and send it to the 
     representative as early as possible, but no later than 30 
     days after the date of the original hearing request; and
       (II) explain why the testimony or evidence is directly 
     relevant to the issues at hand, and a subpoena is the best 
     method or opportunity to obtain such evidence because there 
     are no other means by which the documents or testimony could 
     have been obtained.

       (iii) Fees and mileage.--Any person required by such 
     subpoena to attend as a witness shall be allowed and paid the 
     same fees and mileage as are paid witnesses in the district 
     courts of the United States. Such fees and mileage shall be 
     paid from the Fund.
       (2) Review of written record.--In lieu of a hearing under 
     paragraph (1), any claimant not satisfied with a proposed 
     decision of the Administrator shall have the option, on 
     written request made within 90 days after the date of the 
     issuance of the decision, of obtaining a review of the 
     written record by a representative of the Administrator. If 
     such review is requested, the claimant shall be afforded an 
     opportunity to submit any written evidence or argument which 
     the claimant believes relevant.
       (e) Final Decisions.--
       (1) In general.--If the period of time for requesting 
     review of the proposed decision expires and no request has 
     been filed, or if the claimant waives any objections to the 
     proposed decision, the Administrator shall issue a final 
     decision. If such decision materially differs from the 
     proposed decision, the claimant shall be entitled to review 
     of the decision under subsection (d).
       (2) Time and content.--If the claimant requests review of 
     all or part of the proposed decision the Administrator shall 
     issue a final decision on the claim not later than 180 days 
     after the request for review is received, if the claimant 
     requests a hearing, or not later than 90 days after the 
     request for review is received, if the claimant requests 
     review of the written record. Such decision shall be in 
     writing and contain findings of fact and conclusions of law.
       (f) Representation.--A claimant may authorize an attorney 
     or other individual to represent him or her in any proceeding 
     under this Act.

     SEC. 115. AUDITING PROCEDURES.

       (a) In General.--
       (1) Development.--The Administrator shall develop methods 
     for auditing and evaluating the medical and exposure evidence 
     submitted as part of the claims process. The Administrator 
     may develop additional methods for auditing and evaluating 
     other types of evidence or information received by the 
     Administrator.
       (2) Refusal to consider certain evidence.--
       (A) In general.--If the Administrator determines that an 
     audit conducted in accordance with the methods developed 
     under paragraph (1) demonstrates that the medical evidence 
     submitted by a specific physician or medical facility is not 
     consistent with prevailing medical practices or the 
     applicable requirements of this Act, any medical evidence 
     from such physician or facility shall be unacceptable for 
     purposes of establishing eligibility for an award under this 
     Act.
       (B) Notification.--Upon a determination by the 
     Administrator under subparagraph (A), the Administrator shall 
     notify the physician or medical facility involved of the 
     results of the audit. Such physician or facility shall have a 
     right to appeal such determination under procedures issued by 
     the Administrator.
       (C) Submission of valid evidence.--Claimants shall be 
     allowed to submit valid evidence if prior evidence is found 
     unacceptable for purposes of establishing eligibility for an 
     award under this Act.
       (b) Review of Certified B-Readers.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall prescribe 
     procedures to randomly evaluate the x-rays submitted in 
     support of a statistically significant number of claims by 
     independent certified B-readers, the cost of which shall be 
     paid by the Fund.
       (2) Disagreement.--If an independent certified B-reader 
     assigned under paragraph (1) disagrees with the quality 
     grading or ILO level assigned to an x-ray submitted in 
     support of a claim, the Administrator shall require a review 
     of such x-rays by a second independent certified B-reader.
       (3) Effect on claim.--If neither certified B-reader under 
     paragraph (2) agrees with the quality grading and the ILO 
     grade level assigned to an x-ray as part of the claim, the 
     Administrator shall take into account the findings of the 2 
     independent B readers in making the determination on such 
     claim.
       (4) Certified b-readers.--The Administrator shall maintain 
     a list of a minimum of 50 certified B-readers eligible to 
     participate in the independent reviews, chosen from all 
     certified B-readers. When an x-ray is sent for independent 
     review, the Administrator shall choose the certified B-reader 
     at random from that list.
       (5) Disqualification.--Any certified B-reader who has 
     received compensation before the date of enactment of this 
     Act for assigning an ILO grade level to an x-ray, where the 
     amount of compensation depended on the assigned ILO grade 
     level, is disqualified from inclusion on the Administrator's 
     list.
       (c) Smoking Assessment.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Records and documents.--To aid in the assessment of the 
     accuracy of claimant representations as to their smoking 
     status for purposes of determining eligibility and amount of 
     award under Malignant Level VI, Malignant Level VII, or 
     Malignant Level VIII, and exceptional medical claims, the 
     Administrator shall have the authority to obtain relevant 
     records and documents, including--
       (i) records of past medical treatment and evaluation;
       (ii) affidavits of appropriate individuals;
       (iii) applications for insurance and supporting materials; 
     and
       (iv) employer records of medical examinations.
       (B) Consent.--The claimant shall provide consent for the 
     Administrator to obtain such records and documents where 
     required.
       (2) Review.--The frequency of review of records and 
     documents submitted under paragraph (1)(A) shall be at the 
     discretion of the Administrator, but shall address at least 5 
     percent of the claimants asserting status as nonsmokers or 
     ex-smokers.
       (3) Consent.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator may require the 
     performance of blood tests or any other appropriate medical 
     test, where claimants assert they are nonsmokers or ex-
     smokers for purposes of an award under Malignant Level VI, 
     VII, or VIII, or as an exceptional medical claim, the cost of 
     which shall be paid by the Fund.
       (B) Serum cotinine screening.--The Administrator shall 
     require the performance of serum cotinine screening on all 
     claimants who assert they are nonsmokers or ex-smokers for 
     purposes of an award under Malignant Level VI, VII, or VIII, 
     or as an exceptional medical claim, the cost of which shall 
     be paid by the Fund.
       (4) Penalty for false statements.--Any false information 
     submitted under this subsection shall be subject to criminal 
     prosecution or civil penalties as provided under section 1348 
     of title 18, United States Code (as added by this Act) and 
     section 101(c)(2).
       (d) Pulmonary Function Testing.--The Administrator shall 
     develop auditing procedures for pulmonary function test 
     results submitted as part of a claim, to ensure that such 
     tests are conducted in accordance with American Thoracic 
     Society Criteria, as defined under section 121(a)(13).

                      Subtitle C--Medical Criteria

     SEC. 121. MEDICAL CRITERIA REQUIREMENTS.

       (a) Definitions.--In this section, the following 
     definitions shall apply:
       (1) Asbestosis determined by pathology.--The term 
     ``asbestosis determined by pathology'' means indications of 
     asbestosis based on the pathological grading system for 
     asbestosis described in the Special Issues of the Archives of 
     Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, ``Asbestos-associated 
     Diseases'', Vol. 106, No. 11, App. 3 (October 8, 1982).
       (2) Bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant disease.--The 
     term ``bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant disease'' 
     means a diagnosis of bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease based on--
       (A) an x-ray reading of 1/0 or higher based on the ILO 
     grade scale;
       (B) bilateral pleural plaques;
       (C) bilateral pleural thickening; or
       (D) bilateral pleural calcification.
       (3) Bilateral pleural disease of b2.--The term ``bilateral 
     pleural disease of B2'' means a chest wall pleural thickening 
     or plaque with a maximum width of at least 5 millimeters and 
     a total length of at least \1/4\ of the projection of the 
     lateral chest wall.
       (4) Certified b-reader.--The term ``certified B-reader'' 
     means an individual who is certified by the National 
     Institute of Occupational Safety and Health and whose 
     certification by the National Institute of Occupational 
     Safety and Health is up to date.
       (5) Diffuse pleural thickening.--The term ``diffuse pleural 
     thickening'' means blunting of either costophrenic angle and 
     bilateral pleural plaque or bilateral pleural thickening.
       (6) DLCO.--The term ``DLCO'' means the single-breath 
     diffusing capacity of the lung (carbon monoxide) technique 
     used to measure the volume of carbon monoxide transferred 
     from the alveoli to blood in the pulmonary capillaries for 
     each unit of driving pressure of the carbon monoxide.
       (7) FEV1.--The term ``FEV1'' means forced expiratory volume 
     (1 second), which is the maximal volume of air expelled in 1 
     second during performance of the spirometric test for forced 
     vital capacity.
       (8) FVC.--The term ``FVC'' means forced vital capacity, 
     which is the maximal volume of air expired with a maximally 
     forced effort from a position of maximal inspiration.
       (9) ILO grade.--The term ``ILO grade'' means the 
     radiological ratings for the presence of lung changes as 
     determined from a

[[Page S5356]]

     chest x-ray, all as established from time to time by the 
     International Labor Organization.
       (10) Lower limits of normal.--The term ``lower limits of 
     normal'' means the fifth percentile of healthy populations as 
     defined in the American Thoracic Society statement on lung 
     function testing (Amer. Rev. Resp. Disease 1991, 144:1202-
     1218) and any future revision of the same statement.
       (11) Nonsmoker.--The term ``nonsmoker'' means a claimant 
     who--
       (A) never smoked; or
       (B) has smoked fewer than 100 cigarettes or the equivalent 
     amount of other tobacco products during the claimant's 
     lifetime.
       (12) PO2.--The term ``PO2'' means the 
     partial pressure (tension) of oxygen, which measures the 
     amount of dissolved oxygen in the blood.
       (13) Pulmonary function testing.--The term ``pulmonary 
     function testing'' means spirometry testing that is in 
     material compliance with the quality criteria established by 
     the American Thoracic Society and is performed on equipment 
     which is in material compliance with the standards of the 
     American Thoracic Society for technical quality and 
     calibration.
       (14) Substantial occupational exposure to asbestos.--
       (A) In general.--The term ``substantial occupational 
     exposure'' means employment in an industry and an occupation 
     where for a substantial portion of a normal work year for 
     that occupation, the claimant--
       (i) handled raw asbestos fibers;
       (ii) fabricated asbestos-containing products so that the 
     claimant in the fabrication process was exposed to raw 
     asbestos fibers;
       (iii) altered, repaired, or otherwise worked with an 
     asbestos-containing product such that the claimant was 
     exposed on a regular basis to asbestos fibers; or
       (iv) worked in close proximity to other workers engaged in 
     the activities described under clause (i), (ii), or (iii), 
     such that the claimant was exposed on a regular basis to 
     asbestos fibers.
       (B) Regular basis.--In this paragraph, the term ``on a 
     regular basis'' means on a frequent or recurring basis.
       (15) TLC.--The term ``TLC'' means total lung capacity, 
     which is the total volume of air in the lung after maximal 
     inspiration.
       (16) Weighted occupational exposure.--
       (A) In general.--The term ``weighted occupational 
     exposure'' means exposure for a period of years calculated 
     according to the exposure weighting formula under 
     subparagraphs (B) through (E).
       (B) Moderate exposure.--Subject to subparagraph (E), each 
     year that a claimant's primary occupation, during a 
     substantial portion of a normal work year for that 
     occupation, involved working in areas immediate to where 
     asbestos-containing products were being installed, repaired, 
     or removed under circumstances that involved regular airborne 
     emissions of asbestos fibers, shall count as 1 year of 
     substantial occupational exposure.
       (C) Heavy exposure.--Subject to subparagraph (E), each year 
     that a claimant's primary occupation, during a substantial 
     portion of a normal work year for that occupation, involved 
     the direct installation, repair, or removal of asbestos-
     containing products such that the person was exposed on a 
     regular basis to asbestos fibers, shall count as 2 years of 
     substantial occupational exposure.
       (D) Very heavy exposure.--Subject to subparagraph (E), each 
     year that a claimant's primary occupation, during a 
     substantial portion of a normal work year for that 
     occupation, was in primary asbestos manufacturing, a World 
     War II shipyard, or the asbestos insulation trades, such that 
     the person was exposed on a regular basis to asbestos fibers, 
     shall count as 4 years of substantial occupational exposure.
       (E) Dates of exposure.--Each year of exposure calculated 
     under subparagraphs (B), (C), and (D) that occurred before 
     1976 shall be counted at its full value. Each year from 1976 
     to 1986 shall be counted as \1/2\ of its value. Each year 
     after 1986 shall be counted as \1/10\ of its value.
       (F) Other claims.--Individuals who do not meet the 
     provisions of subparagraphs (A) through (E) and believe their 
     post-1976 or post-1986 exposures exceeded the Occupational 
     Safety and Health Administration standard may submit 
     evidence, documentation, work history, or other information 
     to substantiate noncompliance with the Occupational Safety 
     and Health Administration standard (such as lack of 
     engineering or work practice controls, or protective 
     equipment) such that exposures would be equivalent to 
     exposures before 1976 or 1986, or to documented exposures in 
     similar jobs or occupations where control measures had not 
     been implemented. Claims under this subparagraph shall be 
     evaluated on an individual basis by a Physicians Panel.
       (b) Medical Evidence.--
       (1) Latency.--Unless otherwise specified, all diagnoses of 
     an asbestos-related disease for a level under this section 
     shall be accompanied by--
       (A) a statement by the physician providing the diagnosis 
     that at least 10 years have elapsed between the date of first 
     exposure to asbestos or asbestos-containing products and the 
     diagnosis; or
       (B) a history of the claimant's exposure that is sufficient 
     to establish a 10-year latency period between the date of 
     first exposure to asbestos or asbestos-containing products 
     and the diagnosis.
       (2) Diagnostic guidelines.--All diagnoses of asbestos-
     related diseases shall be based upon--
       (A) for disease Levels I through V, in the case of a 
     claimant who was living at the time the claim was filed--
       (i) a physical examination of the claimant by the physician 
     providing the diagnosis;
       (ii) an evaluation of smoking history and exposure history 
     before making a diagnosis;
       (iii) an x-ray reading by a certified B-reader; and
       (iv) pulmonary function testing in the case of disease 
     Levels III, IV, and V;
       (B) for disease Levels I through V, in the case of a 
     claimant who was deceased at the time the claim was filed, a 
     report from a physician based upon a review of the claimant's 
     medical records which shall include--
       (i) pathological evidence of the nonmalignant asbestos-
     related disease; or
       (ii) an x-ray reading by a certified B-reader;
       (C) for disease Levels VI through IX, in the case of a 
     claimant who was living at the time the claim was filed--
       (i) a physical examination by the claimant's physician 
     providing the diagnosis; or
       (ii) a diagnosis of such a malignant asbestos-related 
     disease, as described in this section, by a board-certified 
     pathologist; and
       (D) for disease Levels VI through IX, in the case of a 
     claimant who was deceased at the time the claim was filed--
       (i) a diagnosis of such a malignant asbestos-related 
     disease, as described in this section, by a board-certified 
     pathologist; and
       (ii) a report from a physician based upon a review of the 
     claimant's medical records.
       (3) Credibility of medical evidence.--To ensure the medical 
     evidence provided in support of a claim is credible and 
     consistent with recognized medical standards, a claimant 
     under this title may be required to submit--
       (A) x-rays or computerized tomography;
       (B) detailed results of pulmonary function tests;
       (C) laboratory tests;
       (D) tissue samples;
       (E) results of medical examinations;
       (F) reviews of other medical evidence; and
       (G) medical evidence that complies with recognized medical 
     standards regarding equipment, testing methods, and procedure 
     to ensure the reliability of such evidence as may be 
     submitted.
       (c) Exposure Evidence.--
       (1) In general.--To qualify for any disease level, the 
     claimant shall demonstrate--
       (A) a minimum exposure to asbestos or asbestos-containing 
     products;
       (B) the exposure occurred in the United States, its 
     territories or possessions, or while a United States citizen, 
     while an employee of an entity organized under any Federal or 
     State law regardless of location, or while a United States 
     citizen while serving on any United States flagged or owned 
     ship, provided the exposure results from such employment or 
     service; and
       (C) any additional asbestos exposure requirement under this 
     section.
       (2) Proof of exposure.--
       (A) Affidavits.--Exposure to asbestos sufficient to satisfy 
     the exposure requirements for any disease level may be 
     established by a detailed and specific affidavit that--
       (i) is filed by--

       (I) the claimant; or
       (II) if the claimant is deceased, a coworker or a family 
     member of the claimant; and

       (ii) is found in proceedings under this title to be--

       (I) reasonably reliable, attesting to the claimant's 
     exposure; and
       (II) credible and not contradicted by other evidence.

       (B) Other proof.--Exposure to asbestos may alternatively be 
     established by invoices, construction or other similar 
     records, or any other reasonably reliable and credible 
     evidence.
       (C) Additional evidence.--The Administrator may require 
     submission of other or additional evidence of exposure, if 
     available, for a particular claim when determined necessary, 
     as part of the minimum information required under section 
     113(c).
       (D) Evaluation.--The Administrator shall prescribe 
     procedures to randomly evaluate the affidavits submitted to 
     satisfy the exposure requirements for any disease level.
       (3) Take home exposure.--
       (A) In general.--A claimant may alternatively satisfy the 
     medical criteria requirements of this section where a claim 
     is filed by a person who alleges their exposure to asbestos 
     was the result of living with a person who, if the claim had 
     been filed by that person, would have met the exposure 
     criteria for the given disease level, and the claimant lived 
     with such person for the time period necessary to satisfy the 
     exposure requirement, for the claimed disease level.
       (B) Review.--Except for claims for disease Level IX 
     (mesothelioma), all claims alleging take home exposure shall 
     be submitted as an exceptional medical claim under section 
     121(g) for review by a Physicians Panel.
       (4) Waiver for workers and residents of libby, montana.--
     Because of the unique nature of the asbestos exposure related 
     to the vermiculite mining and milling operations in Libby, 
     Montana, the Administrator shall waive the exposure 
     requirements under this subtitle for individuals who worked 
     at the vermiculite mining and milling facility in Libby, 
     Montana, or lived or worked within a 20-mile radius of Libby, 
     Montana, for at least 12 consecutive months before December 
     31,

[[Page S5357]]

     2004. Claimants under this section shall provide such 
     supporting documentation as the Administrator shall require.
       (5) Exposure presumptions.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall prescribe rules 
     identifying specific industries, occupations within such 
     industries, and time periods in which workers employed in 
     those industries and occupations typically had substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos as defined under section 
     121(a). Until 5 years after the Administrator certifies that 
     the Fund is paying claims at a reasonable rate, the 
     industries, occupations and time periods identified by the 
     Administrator shall at a minimum include those identified in 
     the 2002 Trust Distribution Process of the Manville Personal 
     Injury Settlement Trust as of January 1, 2005, as industries, 
     occupations, including proximity, and time periods in which 
     workers were presumed to have had significant occupational 
     exposure to asbestos. Thereafter, the Administrator may by 
     rule modify or eliminate those exposure presumptions required 
     to be adopted from the Manville Personal Injury Settlement 
     Trust, if there is evidence that demonstrates that the 
     typical exposure for workers in such industries and 
     occupations during such time periods did not constitute 
     substantial occupational exposure in asbestos.
       (B) Claimants entitled to presumptions.--Any claimant who 
     demonstrates through meaningful and credible evidence that 
     such claimant was employed during relevant time periods in 
     industries and occupations identified under subparagraph (A) 
     shall be entitled to a presumption that the claimant had 
     substantial occupational exposure to asbestos during those 
     time periods. That presumption shall not be conclusive, and 
     the Administrator may find that the claimant does not have 
     substantial occupational exposure if other information 
     demonstrates that the claimant did not in fact have 
     substantial occupational exposure during any part of the 
     relevant time periods.
       (C) Criteria requirements.--Nothing in subparagraph (A) or 
     (B) shall negate the exposure or medical criteria 
     requirements in section 121, for the purpose of receiving 
     compensation from the Fund.
       (6) Penalty for false statement.--Any false information 
     submitted under this subsection shall be subject to section 
     1348 of title 18, United States Code (as added by this Act).
       (d) Asbestos Disease Levels.--
       (1) Nonmalignant level i.--To receive Level I compensation, 
     a claimant shall provide--
       (A) a diagnosis of bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease; and
       (B) evidence of 5 years cumulative occupational exposure to 
     asbestos.
       (2) Nonmalignant level ii.--To receive Level II 
     compensation, a claimant shall provide--
       (A) a diagnosis of bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease with ILO grade of 1/1 or greater, and showing small 
     irregular opacities of shape or size, either ss, st, or tt, 
     and present in both lower lung zones, or asbestosis 
     determined by pathology, or blunting of either costophrenic 
     angle and bilateral pleural plaque or bilateral pleural 
     thickening of at least grade B2 or greater, or bilateral 
     pleural disease of grade B2 or greater;
       (B) evidence of TLC less than 80 percent or FVC less than 
     the lower limits of normal, and FEV1/FVC ratio less than 65 
     percent;
       (C) evidence of 5 or more weighted years of substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos; and
       (D) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2), 
     establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial contributing 
     factor in causing the pulmonary condition in question.
       (3) Nonmalignant level iii.--To receive Level III 
     compensation a claimant shall provide--
       (A) a diagnosis of bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease with ILO grade of 1/0 or greater and showing small 
     irregular opacities of shape or size, either ss, st, or tt, 
     and present in both lower lung zones, or asbestosis 
     determined by pathology, or diffuse pleural thickening, or 
     bilateral pleural disease of B2 or greater;
       (B) evidence of TLC less than 80 percent; FVC less than the 
     lower limits of normal and FEV1/FVC ratio greater than or 
     equal to 65 percent; or evidence of a decline in FVC of 20 
     percent or greater, after allowing for the expected decrease 
     due to aging, and an FEV1/FVC ratio greater than or equal to 
     65 percent documented with a second spirometry;
       (C) evidence of 5 or more weighted years of substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos; and
       (D) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2)--
       (i) establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial 
     contributing factor in causing the pulmonary condition in 
     question; and
       (ii) excluding other more likely causes, other than silica, 
     of that pulmonary condition.
       (4) Nonmalignant level iv.--To receive Level IV 
     compensation a claimant shall provide--
       (A) diagnosis of bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease with ILO grade of 1/1 or greater and showing small 
     irregular opacities of shape or size, either ss, st, or tt, 
     and present in both lower lung zones, or asbestosis 
     determined by pathology, or diffuse pleural thickening, or 
     bilateral pleural disease of B2 or greater;
       (B) evidence of TLC less than 60 percent or FVC less than 
     60 percent, and FEV1/FVC ratio greater than or equal to 65 
     percent;
       (C) evidence of 5 or more weighted years of substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos before diagnosis; and
       (D) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2)--
       (i) establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial 
     contributing factor in causing the pulmonary condition in 
     question; and
       (ii) excluding other more likely causes, other than silica, 
     of that pulmonary condition.
       (5) Nonmalignant level v.--To receive Level V compensation 
     a claimant shall provide--
       (A) diagnosis of bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease with ILO grade of 1/1 or greater and showing small 
     irregular opacities of shape or size, either ss, st, or tt, 
     and present in both lower lung zones, or asbestosis 
     determined by pathology, or diffuse pleural thickening, or 
     bilateral pleural disease of B2 or greater;
       (B)(i) evidence of TLC less than 50 percent or FVC less 
     than 50 percent, and FEV1/FVC ratio greater than or equal to 
     65 percent;
       (ii) DLCO less than 40 percent of predicted, plus a FEV1/
     FVC ratio not less than 65 percent; or
       (iii) PO2 less than 55 mm/Hg, plus a FEV1/FVC 
     ratio not less than 65 percent;
       (C) evidence of 5 or more weighted years of substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos; and
       (D) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2)--
       (i) establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial 
     contributing factor in causing the pulmonary condition in 
     question; and
       (ii) excluding other more likely causes, other than silica, 
     of that pulmonary condition.
       (6) Malignant level vi.--
       (A) In general.--To receive Level VI compensation a 
     claimant shall provide--
       (i) a diagnosis of a primary colorectal, laryngeal, 
     esophageal, pharyngeal, or stomach cancer on the basis of 
     findings by a board-certified pathologist;
       (ii) evidence of a bilateral asbestos-related nonmalignant 
     disease;
       (iii) evidence of 15 or more weighted years of substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos; and
       (iv) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2), 
     establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial contributing 
     factor in causing the cancer in question.
       (B) Referral to physicians panel.--All claims filed with 
     respect to Level VI under this paragraph shall be referred to 
     a Physicians Panel for a determination that it is more 
     probable than not that asbestos exposure was a substantial 
     contributing factor in causing the other cancer in question. 
     If the claimant meets the requirements of subparagraph (A), 
     there shall be a presumption of eligibility for the scheduled 
     value of compensation unless there is evidence determined by 
     the Physicians Panel that rebuts that presumption. In making 
     its determination under this subparagraph, the Physicians 
     Panel shall consider the intensity and duration of exposure, 
     smoking history, and the quality of evidence relating to 
     exposure and smoking. Claimants shall bear the burden of 
     producing meaningful and credible evidence of their smoking 
     history as part of their claim submission.
       (7) Malignant level vii.--
       (A) In general.--To receive Level VII compensation, a 
     claimant shall provide--
       (i) a diagnosis of a primary lung cancer disease on the 
     basis of findings by a board-certified pathologist;
       (ii) evidence of bilateral pleural plaques or bilateral 
     pleural thickening or bilateral pleural calcification by 
     chest x-ray or such diagnostic methodology supported by the 
     findings of the Institute of Medicine under subsection (f);
       (iii) evidence of 12 or more weighted years of substantial 
     occupational exposure to asbestos; and
       (iv) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2), 
     establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial contributing 
     factor in causing the lung cancer in question.
       (B) Physicians panel.--A claimant filing a claim relating 
     to Level VII under this paragraph may request that the claim 
     be referred to a Physicians Panel for a determination of 
     whether the claimant qualifies for the disease category and 
     relevant smoking status. In making its determination under 
     this subparagraph, the Physicians Panel shall consider the 
     intensity and duration of exposure, smoking history, and the 
     quality of evidence relating to exposure and smoking. 
     Claimants shall bear the burden of producing meaningful and 
     credible evidence of their smoking history as part of their 
     claim submission.
       (8) Malignant level viii.--
       (A) In general.--To receive Level VIII compensation, a 
     claimant shall provide a diagnosis--

[[Page S5358]]

       (i) of a primary lung cancer disease on the basis of 
     findings by a board-certified pathologist;
       (ii)(I) of--

       (aa) asbestosis based on a chest x-ray of at least 1/0 on 
     the ILO scale and showing small irregular opacities of shape 
     or size, either ss, st, or tt, and present in both lower lung 
     zones; and
       (bb) 10 or more weighted years of substantial occupational 
     exposure to asbestos;

       (II) of--

       (aa) asbestosis based on a chest x-ray of at least 1/1 on 
     the ILO scale and showing small irregular opacities of shape 
     or size, either ss, st, or tt, and present in both lower lung 
     zones; and
       (bb) 8 or more weighted years of substantial occupational 
     exposure to asbestos;

       (III) asbestosis determined by pathology and 10 or more 
     weighted years of substantial occupational exposure to 
     asbestos; or
       (IV) asbestosis as determined by CT Scan, the cost of which 
     shall not be borne by the Fund. The CT Scan must be 
     interpreted by a board-certified radiologist and confirmed by 
     a board-certified radiologist; and
       (iii) supporting medical documentation, such as a written 
     opinion by the examining or diagnosing physician, according 
     to the diagnostic guidelines in section 121(b)(2), 
     establishing asbestos exposure as a substantial contributing 
     factor in causing the lung cancer in question; and 10 or more 
     weighted years of substantial occupational exposure to 
     asbestos.
       (B) Physicians panel.--A claimant filing a claim with 
     respect to Level VIII under this paragraph may request that 
     the claim be referred to a Physicians Panel for a 
     determination of whether the claimant qualifies for the 
     disease category and relevant smoking status. In making its 
     determination under this subparagraph, the Physicians Panel 
     shall consider the intensity and duration of exposure, 
     smoking history, and the quality of evidence relating to 
     exposure and smoking. Claimants shall bear the burden of 
     producing meaningful and credible evidence of their smoking 
     history as part of their claim submission.
       (9) Malignant level ix.--To receive Level IX compensation, 
     a claimant shall provide--
       (A) a diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma disease on the 
     basis of findings by a board-certified pathologist; and
       (B) credible evidence of identifiable exposure to asbestos 
     resulting from--
       (i) occupational exposure to asbestos;
       (ii) exposure to asbestos fibers brought into the home of 
     the claimant by a worker occupationally exposed to asbestos;
       (iii) exposure to asbestos fibers resulting from living or 
     working in the proximate vicinity of a factory, shipyard, 
     building demolition site, or other operation that regularly 
     released asbestos fibers into the air due to operations 
     involving asbestos at that site; or
       (iv) other identifiable exposure to asbestos fibers, in 
     which case the claim shall be reviewed by a Physicians Panel 
     under subsection (g) for a determination of eligibility.
       (e) Institute of Medicine Study.--Not later than April 1, 
     2006, the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of 
     Sciences shall complete a study contracted with the National 
     Institutes of Health to determine whether there is a causal 
     link between asbestos exposure and other cancers, including 
     colorectal, laryngeal, esophageal, pharyngeal, and stomach 
     cancers, except for mesothelioma and lung cancers. The 
     Institute of Medicine shall issue a report on its findings on 
     causation, which shall be transmitted to Congress, the 
     Administrator, the Advisory Committee on Asbestos Disease 
     Compensation or the Medical Advisory Committee, and the 
     Physicians Panels. The Institute of Medicine report shall be 
     binding on the Administrator and the Physicians Panels for 
     purposes of determining whether asbestos exposure is a 
     substantial contributing factor in causing the other 
     cancerous disease in question under subsection (d)(6). If 
     asbestos is not a substantial contributing factor to the 
     particular cancerous disease under subsection (d)(6), 
     subsection (d)(6) shall not apply with respect to that 
     disease and no claim may be filed with, or award paid from, 
     the Fund with respect to that disease under malignant Level 
     VI.
       (f) Institute of Medicine Study on CT Scans.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than April 1, 2006, the 
     Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences 
     shall complete a study contracted with the National 
     Institutes of Health of the use of CT scans as a diagnostic 
     tool for bilateral pleural plaques, bilateral pleural 
     thickening, or bilateral pleural calcification.
       (2) Findings.--The Institute of Medicine shall make and 
     issue findings based on the study required under paragraph 
     (1) on whether--
       (A) CT scans are generally accepted in the medical 
     profession to detect bilateral pleural plaques, bilateral 
     pleural thickening, or bilateral pleural calcification; and
       (B) professional standards of practice exist to allow for 
     the Administrator's reasonable reliance on such as evidence 
     of bilateral pleural plaques, bilateral pleural thickening, 
     or bilateral pleural calcification under the Fund.
       (3) Report.--The Institute of Medicine shall issue a report 
     on the findings required under paragraph (2), which shall be 
     transmitted to Congress, the Administrator, the Advisory 
     Committee on Asbestos Disease Compensation or the Medical 
     Advisory Committee, and the Physicians Panels.
       (4) Report binding on the administrator.--The Institute of 
     Medicine report required under paragraph (3) shall be binding 
     on the Administrator and the Physicians Panels for purposes 
     of determining reliable and acceptable evidence that may be 
     submitted for a Level VII claim under subsection (d)(7).
       (g) Exceptional Medical Claims.--
       (1) In general.--A claimant who does not meet the medical 
     criteria requirements under this section may apply for 
     designation of the claim as an exceptional medical claim.
       (2) Application.--When submitting an application for review 
     of an exceptional medical claim, the claimant shall--
       (A) state that the claim does not meet the medical criteria 
     requirements under this section; or
       (B) seek designation as an exceptional medical claim within 
     60 days after a determination that the claim is ineligible 
     solely for failure to meet the medical criteria requirements 
     under subsection (d).
       (3) Report of physician.--
       (A) In general.--Any claimant applying for designation of a 
     claim as an exceptional medical claim shall support an 
     application filed under paragraph (1) with a report from a 
     physician meeting the requirements of this section.
       (B) Contents.--A report filed under subparagraph (A) shall 
     include--
       (i) a complete review of the claimant's medical history and 
     current condition;
       (ii) such additional material by way of analysis and 
     documentation as shall be prescribed by rule of the 
     Administrator; and
       (iii) a detailed explanation as to why the claim meets the 
     requirements of paragraph (4)(B).
       (4) Review.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall refer all 
     applications and supporting documentation submitted under 
     paragraph (2) to a Physicians Panel for review for 
     eligibility as an exceptional medical claim.
       (B) Standard.--A claim shall be designated as an 
     exceptional medical claim if the claimant, for reasons beyond 
     the control of the claimant, cannot satisfy the requirements 
     under this section, but is able, through comparably reliable 
     evidence that meets the standards under this section, to show 
     that the claimant has an asbestos-related condition that is 
     substantially comparable to that of a medical condition that 
     would satisfy the requirements of a category under this 
     section.
       (C) Additional information.--A Physicians Panel may request 
     additional reasonable testing to support the claimant's 
     application.
       (D) CT scan.--A claimant may submit a CT Scan in addition 
     to an x-ray.
       (E) Mesothelioma cases.--
       (i) In general.--The Physicals Panel shall grant priority 
     status to--

       (I) all Level IX claims with other identifiable asbestos 
     exposure as provided under paragraph (9)(B)(iv); and
       (II) all Level IX claims that are filed as exceptional 
     medical claims.

       (ii) Physician panel.--If the Physicians Panel issues a 
     certificate of medical eligibility, the claimant shall be 
     deemed to qualify for Level IX compensation. If the 
     Physicians Panel rejects the claim, and the Administrator 
     deems it rejected, the claimant may immediately seek judicial 
     review under section 302.
       (5) Approval.--
       (A) In general.--If the Physicians Panel determines that 
     the medical evidence is sufficient to show a comparable 
     asbestos-related condition, it shall issue a certificate of 
     medical eligibility designating the category of asbestos-
     related injury under this section for which the claimant 
     shall be eligible to seek compensation.
       (B) Referral.--Upon the issuance of a certificate under 
     subparagraph (A), the Physicians Panel shall submit the claim 
     to the Administrator, who shall give due consideration to the 
     recommendation of the Physicians Panel in determining whether 
     the claimant meets the requirements for compensation under 
     this Act.
       (6) Resubmission.--Any claimant whose application for 
     designation as an exceptional medical claim is rejected may 
     resubmit an application if new evidence becomes available. 
     The application shall identify any prior applications and 
     state the new evidence that forms the basis of the 
     resubmission.
       (7) Rules.--The Administrator shall promulgate rules 
     governing the procedures for seeking designation of a claim 
     as an exceptional medical claim.
       (8) Libby, montana.--
       (A) In general.--A Libby, Montana, claimant may elect to 
     have the claimant's claims designated as exceptional medical 
     claims and referred to a Physicians Panel for review. In 
     reviewing the medical evidence submitted by a Libby, Montana 
     claimant in support of that claim, the Physicians Panel shall 
     take into consideration the unique and serious nature of 
     asbestos exposure in Libby, Montana, including the nature of 
     the pleural disease related to asbestos exposure in Libby, 
     Montana.
       (B) Claims.--For all claims for Levels II through IV filed 
     by Libby, Montana claimants, as described under subsection 
     (c)(4), once the Administrator or the Physicians Panel issues 
     a certificate of medical eligibility to a Libby, Montana 
     claimant, and notwithstanding the disease category designated 
     in the certificate or the eligible disease or condition 
     established in accordance with this section, or the value of 
     the award

[[Page S5359]]

     determined in accordance with section 114, the Libby, Montana 
     claimant shall be entitled to an award that is not less than 
     that awarded to claimants who suffer from asbestosis, Level 
     IV. For all malignant claims filed by Libby, Montana 
     claimants, the Libby, Montana claimant shall be entitled to 
     an award that corresponds to the malignant disease category 
     designated by the Administrator or the Physicians Panel.
       (C) Evaluation of claims.--For purposes of evaluating 
     exceptional medical claims from Libby, Montana, a claimant 
     shall be deemed to have a comparable asbestos-related 
     condition to an asbestos disease category Level IV, and shall 
     be deemed to qualify for compensation at Level IV, if the 
     claimant provides--
       (i) a diagnosis of bilateral asbestos related nonmalignant 
     disease;
       (ii) evidence of TLC or FVC less than 80 percent; and
       (iii) supporting medical documentation establishing 
     asbestos exposure as a substantial contributing factor in 
     causing the pulmonary condition in question, and excluding 
     more likely causes of that pulmonary condition.
       (9) Study of vermiculite processing facilities.--
       (A) In general.--As part of the ongoing National Asbestos 
     Exposure Review (in this section referred to as ``NAER'') 
     being conducted by the Agency for Toxic Substances and 
     Disease Registry (in this section referred to as ``ATSDR'') 
     of facilities that received vermiculite ore from Libby, 
     Montana, the ATSDR shall conduct a study of all Phase 1 sites 
     where--
       (i) the Environmental Protection Agency has mandated 
     further action at the site on the basis of current 
     contamination; or
       (ii) the site was an exfoliation facility that processed 
     roughly 100,000 tons or more of vermiculite from the Libby 
     mine.
       (B) Study by atsdr.--The study by the ATSDR shall evaluate 
     the facilities identified under subparagraph (A) and 
     compare--
       (i) the levels of asbestos emissions from such facilities;
       (ii) the resulting asbestos contamination in areas 
     surrounding such facilities;
       (iii) the levels of exposure to residents living in the 
     vicinity of such facilities;
       (iv) the risks of asbestos-related disease to the residents 
     living in the vicinity of such facilities; and
       (v) the risk of asbestos-related mortality to residents 
     living in the vicinity of such facilities,

     to the emissions, contamination, exposures, and risks 
     resulting from the mining of vermiculite ore in Libby, 
     Montana.
       (C) Results of study.--The results of the study required 
     under this paragraph shall be transmitted to the 
     Administrator. If the ATSDR finds as a result of such study 
     that, for any particular facility, the levels of emissions 
     from, the resulting contamination caused by, the levels of 
     exposure to nearby residents from, and the risks of asbestos-
     related disease and asbestos-related mortality to nearby 
     residents from such facility are substantially equivalent to 
     those of Libby, Montana, then the Administrator shall treat 
     claims from residents surrounding such facilities the same as 
     claims of residents of Libby, Montana, and such residents 
     shall have all the rights of residents of Libby, Montana, 
     under this Act. As part of the results of its study, the 
     ATSDR shall prescribe for any such facility the relevant 
     geographic and temporal criteria under which the exposures 
     and risks to the surrounding residents are substantially 
     equivalent to those of residents of Libby, Montana, and 
     therefore qualify for treatment under this paragraph.
       (10) Naturally occurring asbestos.--A claimant who has been 
     exposed to naturally occurring asbestos may file an 
     exceptional medical claim with the Fund.
       (11) Asbestos exposure as the result of a natural or other 
     disaster.--
       (A) In general.--A claimant may file an exceptional medical 
     claim with the Fund if such claimant has been exposed to 
     asbestos in any area that is subject to a declaration by the 
     President of a major disaster, as defined under section 102 
     of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency 
     Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 5122), as the result of--
       (i) the attack on the World Trade Center in New York, New 
     York on September 11, 2001; or
       (ii) Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Rita of 2005 in the 
     Gulf Region of the United States.
       (B) Review of evidence.--In reviewing medical evidence 
     submitted by a claimant under subparagraph (A)(i) or (ii), 
     the Physicians Panel shall take into consideration the unique 
     nature of these disasters and the potential for asbestos 
     exposure resulting from these disasters.
       (h) Guidelines for CT Scans.--The Administrator shall 
     commission the American College of Radiology to develop, in 
     consultation with the American Thoracic Society, American 
     College of Chest Physicians, and Institute of Medicine, 
     guidelines and a methodology for the use of CT scans as a 
     diagnostic tool for bilateral pleural plaques, bilateral 
     pleural thickening, or bilateral pleural calcification under 
     the Fund. After development, such guidelines and methodology 
     shall be used for diagnostic purposes under the Fund.

                           Subtitle D--Awards

     SEC. 131. AMOUNT.

       (a) In General.--An asbestos claimant who meets the 
     requirements of section 111 shall be entitled to an award in 
     an amount determined by reference to the benefit table and 
     the matrices developed under subsection (b).
       (b) Benefit Table.--
       (1) In general.--An asbestos claimant with an eligible 
     disease or condition established in accordance with section 
     121 shall be eligible for an award as determined under this 
     subsection. The award for all asbestos claimants with an 
     eligible disease or condition established in accordance with 
     section 121 shall be according to the following schedule:


  Level                          Scheduled Condition  Scheduled Value
                                  or Disease
  I............................  Asbestosis/Pleural   Medical Monitoring
                                  Disease A
  II...........................  Mixed Disease With   $25,000
                                  Impairment
  III..........................  Asbestosis/Pleural   $100,000
                                  Disease B
  IV...........................  Severe Asbestosis    $400,000
  V............................  Disabling            $850,000
                                  Asbestosis
  VI...........................  Other Cancer         $200,000
  VII..........................  Lung Cancer With     smokers, $300,000;
                                  Pleural Disease
                                                      ex-smokers,
                                                       $725,000;
                                                      nonsmokers,
                                                       $800,000
  VIII.........................  Lung Cancer With     smokers, $600,000;
                                  Asbestosis
                                                      ex-smokers,
                                                       $975,000;
                                                      nonsmokers,
                                                       $1,100,000
  IX...........................  Mesothelioma         $1,100,000
 

       (2) Definitions.--In this section--
       (A) the term ``nonsmoker'' means a claimant who--
       (i) never smoked; or
       (ii) has smoked fewer than 100 cigarettes or the equivalent 
     of other tobacco products during the claimant's lifetime; and
       (B) the term ``ex-smoker'' means a claimant who has not 
     smoked during any portion of the 12-year period preceding the 
     diagnosis of lung cancer.
       (3) Level ix adjustments.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator may increase awards for 
     Level IX claimants who have dependent children so long as the 
     increase under this paragraph is cost neutral. Such increased 
     awards shall be paid for by decreasing awards for claimants 
     other than Level IX, so long as no award levels are decreased 
     more than 10 percent.
       (B) Implementation.--Before making adjustments under this 
     paragraph, the Administrator shall publish in the Federal 
     Register notice of, and a plan for, making such adjustments.
       (4) Special adjustment for fela cases.--
       (A) In general.--A claimant who would be eligible to bring 
     a claim under the Act of April 22, 1908 (45 U.S.C. 51 et 
     seq.), commonly known as the Employers' Liability Act, but 
     for section 403 of this Act, shall be eligible for a special 
     adjustment under this paragraph.
       (B) Regulations.--
       (i) In general.--Not later than 90 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall promulgate 
     regulations relating to special adjustments under this 
     paragraph.
       (ii) Joint proposal.--Not later than 45 days after the date 
     of enactment of this Act, representatives of railroad 
     management and representatives of railroad labor shall submit 
     to the Administrator a joint proposal for regulations 
     describing the eligibility for and amount of special 
     adjustments under this paragraph. If a joint proposal is 
     submitted, the Administrator shall promulgate regulations 
     that reflect the joint proposal.
       (iii) Absence of joint proposal.--If railroad management 
     and railroad labor are unable to agree on a joint proposal 
     within 45 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
     benefits prescribed in subparagraph (E) shall be the benefits 
     available to claimants, and the Administrator shall 
     promulgate regulations containing such benefits.
       (iv) Review.--The parties participating in the arbitration 
     may file in the United States District Court for the District 
     of Columbia a petition for review of the Administrator's 
     order. The court shall have jurisdiction to affirm the order 
     of the Administrator, or to set it aside, in whole or in 
     part, or it may remand the proceedings to the Administrator 
     for such further action as it may direct. On such review, the 
     findings and order of the Administrator shall be conclusive 
     on the parties, except that the order of the Administrator 
     may be set aside, in whole or in parts or remanded to the 
     Administrator, for failure of the Administrator to comply 
     with the requirements of this section, for failure of the 
     order to conform, or confine itself, to matters within the 
     scope of the Administrator's jurisdiction, or for fraud or 
     corruption.
       (C) Eligibility.--An individual eligible to file a claim 
     under the Act of April 22, 1908 (45 U.S.C. 51 et seq.), 
     commonly known as the Employers' Liability Act, shall be 
     eligible for a special adjustment under this paragraph if 
     such individual meets the criteria set forth in subparagraph 
     (F).
       (D) Amount.--
       (i) In general.--The amount of the special adjustment shall 
     be based on the type and severity of asbestos disease, and 
     shall be 110 percent of the average amount an injured 
     individual with a disease caused by asbestos, as described in 
     section 121(d) of this Act, would have received, during the 
     5-year period before the enactment of this Act, adjusted for 
     inflation. This adjustment shall be in addition to any other 
     award for which the claimant is eligible under this Act. The

[[Page S5360]]

     amount of the special adjustment shall be reduced by an 
     amount reasonably calculated to take into account all 
     expenses of litigation normally borne by plaintiffs, 
     including attorney's fees.
       (ii) Limitation.--The amount under clause (i) may not 
     exceed the amount the claimant is eligible to receive before 
     applying the special adjustment under that clause.
       (E) Arbitrated benefits.--If railroad management and 
     railroad labor are unable to agree on a joint proposal within 
     45 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
     Administrator shall appoint an arbitrator to determine the 
     benefits under subparagraph (D). The Administrator shall 
     appoint an arbitrator who shall be acceptable to both 
     railroad management and railroad labor. Railroad management 
     and railroad labor shall each designate their representatives 
     to participate in the arbitration. The arbitrator shall 
     submit the benefits levels to the Administrator not later 
     than 30 days after appointment and such benefits levels shall 
     be based on information provided by rail labor and rail 
     management. The information submitted to the arbitrator by 
     railroad management and railroad labor shall be considered 
     confidential and shall be disclosed to the other party upon 
     execution of an appropriate confidentiality agreement. Unless 
     the submitting party provides written consent, neither the 
     arbitrator nor either party to the arbitration shall divulge 
     to any third party any information or data, in any form, 
     submitted to the arbitrator under this section. Nor shall 
     either party use such information or data for any purpose 
     other than participation in the arbitration proceeding, and 
     each party shall return to the other any information it has 
     received from the other party as soon the arbitration is 
     concluded. Information submitted to the arbitrator may not be 
     admitted into evidence, nor discovered, in any civil 
     litigation in Federal or State court. The nature of the 
     information submitted to the arbitrator shall be within the 
     sole discretion of the submitting party, and the arbitrator 
     may not require a party to submit any particular information, 
     including information subject to a prior confidentiality 
     agreement.
       (F) Demonstration of eligibility.--
       (i) In general.--A claimant under this paragraph shall be 
     required to demonstrate--

       (I) employment of the claimant in the railroad industry;
       (II) exposure of the claimant to asbestos as part of that 
     employment; and
       (III) the nature and severity of the asbestos-related 
     injury.

       (ii) Medical criteria.--In order to be eligible for a 
     special adjustment a claimant shall meet the criteria set 
     forth in section 121 that would qualify a claimant for a 
     payment under Level II or greater.
       (5) Medical monitoring.--An asbestos claimant with 
     asymptomatic exposure, based on the criteria under section 
     121(d)(1), shall only be eligible for medical monitoring 
     reimbursement as provided under section 132.
       (6) Cost-of-living adjustment.--
       (A) In general.--Beginning January 1, 2007, award amounts 
     under paragraph (1) shall be annually increased by an amount 
     equal to such dollar amount multiplied by the cost-of-living 
     adjustment, rounded to the nearest $1,000 increment.
       (B) Calculation of cost-of-living adjustment.--For the 
     purposes of subparagraph (A), the cost-of-living adjustment 
     for any calendar year shall be the percentage, if any, by 
     which the consumer price index for the succeeding calendar 
     year exceeds the consumer price index for calendar year 2005.
       (C) Consumer price index.--
       (i) In general.--For the purposes of subparagraph (B), the 
     consumer price index for any calendar year is the average of 
     the consumer price index as of the close of the 12-month 
     period ending on August 31 of such calendar year.
       (ii) Definition.--For purposes of clause (i), the term 
     ``consumer price index'' means the consumer price index 
     published by the Department of Labor. The consumer price 
     index series to be used for award escalations shall include 
     the consumer price index used for all-urban consumers, with 
     an area coverage of the United States city average, for all 
     items, based on the 1982-1984 index based period, as 
     published by the Department of Labor.

     SEC. 132. MEDICAL MONITORING.

       (a) Relation to Statute of Limitations.--The filing of a 
     claim under this Act that seeks reimbursement for medical 
     monitoring shall not be considered as evidence that the 
     claimant has discovered facts that would otherwise commence 
     the period applicable for purposes of the statute of 
     limitations under section 113(b).
       (b) Costs.--Reimbursable medical monitoring costs shall 
     include the costs of a claimant not covered by health 
     insurance for an examination by the claimant's physician, x-
     ray tests, and pulmonary function tests every 3 years.
       (c) Regulations.--The Administrator shall promulgate 
     regulations that establish--
       (1) the reasonable costs for medical monitoring that is 
     reimbursable; and
       (2) the procedures applicable to asbestos claimants.

     SEC. 133. PAYMENT.

       (a) Structured Payments.--
       (1) In general.--An asbestos claimant who is entitled to an 
     award should receive the amount of the award through 
     structured payments from the Fund, made over a period of 3 
     years, and in no event more than 4 years after the date of 
     final adjudication of the claim.
       (2) Payment period and amount.--There shall be a 
     presumption that any award paid under this subsection shall 
     provide for payment of--
       (A) 40 percent of the total amount in year 1;
       (B) 30 percent of the total amount in year 2; and
       (C) 30 percent of the total amount in year 3.
       (3) Extension of payment period.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall develop guidelines 
     to provide for the payment period of an award under 
     subsection (a) to be extended to a 4-year period if such 
     action is warranted in order to preserve the overall solvency 
     of the Fund. Such guidelines shall include reference to the 
     number of claims made to the Fund and the awards made and 
     scheduled to be paid from the Fund as provided under section 
     405.
       (B) Limitations.--In no event shall less than 50 percent of 
     an award be paid in the first 2 years of the payment period 
     under this subsection.
       (4) Lump-sum payments.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall develop guidelines 
     to provide for 1 lump-sum payment to asbestos claimants who 
     are mesothelioma victims and who are alive on the date on 
     which the Administrator receives notice of the eligibility of 
     the claimant.
       (B) Timing of payments.--Lump-sum payments shall be made 
     within the shorter of--
       (i) not later than 30 days after the date the claim is 
     approved by the Administrator; or
       (ii) not later than 6 months after the date the claim is 
     filed.
       (C) Timing of payments to be adjusted with respect to 
     solvency of the fund.--If the Administrator determines that 
     solvency of the Fund would be severely harmed by the timing 
     of the payments required under subparagraph (B), the time for 
     such payments may be extended to the shorter of--
       (i) not later than 6 months after the date the claim is 
     approved by the Administrator; or
       (ii) not later than 11 months after the date the claim is 
     filed.
       (5) Expedited payments.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall develop guidelines 
     to provide for expedited payments to asbestos claimants in 
     cases of terminal health claims as described under section 
     106(c)(2)(B) and (C).
       (B) Timing of payments.--Total payments shall be made 
     within the shorter of--
       (i) not later than 6 months after the date the claim is 
     approved by the Administrator; or
       (ii) not later than 1 year after the date the claim is 
     filed.
       (C) Timing of payments to be adjusted with respect to 
     solvency of the fund.--If the Administrator determines that 
     solvency of the Fund would be severely harmed by the timing 
     of the payments required under subparagraph (B), the time for 
     such payments may be extended to the shorter of--
       (i) not later than 1 year after the date the claim is 
     approved by the Administrator; or
       (ii) not later than 2 years after the date the claim is 
     filed.
       (D) Prioritization of claims.--The Administrator shall, in 
     final regulations promulgated under section 101(c), designate 
     categories of claims to be handled on an expedited basis. The 
     Administrator shall prioritize the processing and payment of 
     health claims involving claimants with the most serious 
     health risks. The Administrator shall also prioritize claims 
     from claimants who face extreme financial hardship.
       (6) Annuity.--An asbestos claimant may elect to receive any 
     payments to which that claimant is entitled under this title 
     in the form of an annuity.
       (b) Limitation on Transferability.--A claim filed under 
     this Act shall not be assignable or otherwise transferable 
     under this Act.
       (c) Creditors.--An award under this title shall be exempt 
     from all claims of creditors and from levy, execution, and 
     attachment or other remedy for recovery or collection of a 
     debt, and such exemption may not be waived.
       (d) Medicare as Secondary Payer.--No award under this title 
     shall be deemed a payment for purposes of section 1862 of the 
     Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395y).
       (e) Exempt Property in Asbestos Claimant's Bankruptcy 
     Case.--If an asbestos claimant files a petition for relief 
     under section 301 of title 11, United States Code, no award 
     granted under this Act shall be treated as property of the 
     bankruptcy estate of the asbestos claimant in accordance with 
     section 541(b)(6) of title 11, United States Code.
       (f) Effect of Payment.--The full payment of an asbestos 
     claim under this section shall be in full satisfaction of 
     such claim and shall be deemed to operate as a release to 
     such claim. No claimant with an asbestos claim that has been 
     fully paid under this section may proceed in the tort system 
     with respect to such claim.

     SEC. 134. SETOFFS FOR COLLATERAL SOURCE COMPENSATION AND 
                   PRIOR AWARDS.

       (a) In General.--The amount of an award otherwise available 
     to an asbestos claimant under this title shall be reduced by 
     the amount of any collateral source compensation and by any 
     amounts paid or to be paid to the claimant for a prior award 
     under this Act.

[[Page S5361]]

       (b) Exclusions.--
       (1) Collateral source compensation.--In no case shall 
     statutory benefits under workers' compensation laws, special 
     adjustments made under section 131(b)(3), occupational or 
     total disability benefits under the Railroad Retirement Act 
     (45 U.S.C. 201 et seq.), sickness benefits under the Railroad 
     Unemployment Insurance Act (45 U.S.C. 351 et seq.), and 
     veterans' benefits programs be deemed as collateral source 
     compensation for purposes of this section.
       (2) Prior award payments.--Any amounts paid or to be paid 
     for a prior claim for a nonmalignant disease (Levels I 
     through V) filed against the Fund shall not be deducted as a 
     setoff against amounts payable for the second injury claims 
     for a malignant disease (Levels VI through IX), unless the 
     malignancy was diagnosed before the date on which the 
     nonmalignancy claim was compensated.

     SEC. 135. CERTAIN CLAIMS NOT AFFECTED BY PAYMENT OF AWARDS.

       (a) In General.--The payment of an award under section 106 
     or 133 shall not be considered a form of compensation or 
     reimbursement for a loss for purposes of imposing liability 
     on any asbestos claimant receiving such payment to repay 
     any--
       (1) insurance carrier for insurance payments; or
       (2) person or governmental entity on account of worker's 
     compensation, health care, or disability payments.
       (b) No Effect on Claims.--
       (1) In general.--The payment of an award to an asbestos 
     claimant under section 106 or 133 shall not affect any claim 
     of an asbestos claimant against--
       (A) an insurance carrier with respect to insurance; or
       (B) against any person or governmental entity with respect 
     to worker's compensation, healthcare, or disability.
       (2) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this subsection shall 
     be construed to authorize the pursuit of a claim that is 
     preempted under section 403.

            TITLE II--ASBESTOS INJURY CLAIMS RESOLUTION FUND

           Subtitle A--Asbestos Defendants Funding Allocation

     SEC. 201. DEFINITIONS.

       In this subtitle, the following definitions shall apply:
       (1) Affiliated group.--The term ``affiliated group''--
       (A) means a defendant participant that is an ultimate 
     parent and any person whose entire beneficial interest is 
     directly or indirectly owned by that ultimate parent on the 
     date of enactment of this Act; and
       (B) shall not include any person that is a debtor or any 
     direct or indirect majority-owned subsidiary of a debtor.
       (2) Indemnifiable cost.--The term ``indemnifiable cost'' 
     means a cost, expense, debt, judgment, or settlement incurred 
     with respect to an asbestos claim that, at any time before 
     December 31, 2002, was or could have been subject to 
     indemnification, contribution, surety, or guaranty.
       (3) Indemnitee.--The term ``indemnitee'' means a person 
     against whom any asbestos claim has been asserted before 
     December 31, 2002, who has received from any other person, or 
     on whose behalf a sum has been paid by such other person to 
     any third person, in settlement, judgment, defense, or 
     indemnity in connection with an alleged duty with respect to 
     the defense or indemnification of such person concerning that 
     asbestos claim, other than under a policy of insurance or 
     reinsurance.
       (4) Indemnitor.--The term ``indemnitor'' means a person who 
     has paid under a written agreement at any time before 
     December 31, 2002, a sum in settlement, judgment, defense, or 
     indemnity to or on behalf of any person defending against an 
     asbestos claim, in connection with an alleged duty with 
     respect to the defense or indemnification of such person 
     concerning that asbestos claim, except that payments by an 
     insurer or reinsurer under a contract of insurance or 
     reinsurance shall not make the insurer or reinsurer an 
     indemnitor for purposes of this subtitle.
       (5) Prior asbestos expenditures.--The term ``prior asbestos 
     expenditures''--
       (A) means the gross total amount paid by or on behalf of a 
     person at any time before December 31, 2002, in settlement, 
     judgment, defense, or indemnity costs related to all asbestos 
     claims against that person;
       (B) includes payments made by insurance carriers to or for 
     the benefit of such person or on such person's behalf with 
     respect to such asbestos claims, except as provided in 
     section 204(g);
       (C) shall not include any payment made by a person in 
     connection with or as a result of changes in insurance 
     reserves required by contract or any activity or dispute 
     related to insurance coverage matters for asbestos-related 
     liabilities; and
       (D) shall not include any payment made by or on behalf of 
     persons who are or were common carriers by railroad for 
     asbestos claims brought under the Act of April 22, 1908 (45 
     U.S.C. 51 et seq.), commonly known as the Employers' 
     Liability Act, as a result of operations as a common carrier 
     by railroad, including settlement, judgment, defense, or 
     indemnity costs associated with these claims.
       (6) Ultimate parent.--The term ``ultimate parent'' means a 
     person--
       (A) that owned, as of December 31, 2002, the entire 
     beneficial interest, directly or indirectly, of at least 1 
     other person; and
       (B) whose entire beneficial interest was not owned, on 
     December 31, 2002, directly or indirectly, by any other 
     single person (other than a natural person).
       (7) Asbestos premises claim.--The term ``asbestos premises 
     claim''--
       (A) means an asbestos claim against a current or former 
     premises owner or landowner, or person controlling or 
     possessing premises or land, alleging injury or death caused 
     by exposure to asbestos on such premises or land or by 
     exposure to asbestos carried off such premises or land on the 
     clothing or belongings of another person; and
       (B) includes any such asbestos claim against a current or 
     former employer alleging injury or death caused by exposure 
     to asbestos on premises or land owned, controlled or 
     possessed by the employer, if such claim is not a claim for 
     benefits under a workers' compensation law or veterans' 
     benefits program.
       (8) Asbestos premises defendant participant.--The term 
     ``asbestos premises defendant participant'' means any 
     defendant participant for which 95 percent or more of its 
     prior asbestos expenditures relate to asbestos premises 
     claims against that defendant participant.

     SEC. 202. AUTHORITY AND TIERS.

       (a) Liability for Payments to the Fund.--
       (1) In general.--Defendant participants shall be liable for 
     payments to the Fund in accordance with this section based on 
     tiers and subtiers assigned to defendant participants.
       (2) Aggregate payment obligations level.--The total 
     payments required of all defendant participants over the life 
     of the Fund shall not exceed a sum equal to $90,000,000,000 
     less any bankruptcy trust credits under section 222(d). The 
     Administrator shall have the authority to allocate the 
     payments required of the defendant participants among the 
     tiers as provided in this title.
       (3) Ability to enter reorganization.--Notwithstanding any 
     other provision of this Act, all debtors that, together with 
     all of their direct or indirect majority-owned subsidiaries, 
     have prior asbestos expenditures less than $1,000,000 may 
     proceed with the filing, solicitation, and confirmation of a 
     plan of reorganization that does not comply with the 
     requirements of this Act, including a trust and channeling 
     injunction under section 524(g) of title 11, United States 
     Code. Any asbestos claim made in conjunction with a plan of 
     reorganization allowable under the preceding sentence shall 
     be subject to section 403(d) of this Act.
       (b) Tier I.--Tier I shall include all debtors that, 
     together with all of their direct or indirect majority-owned 
     subsidiaries, have prior asbestos expenditures greater than 
     $1,000,000.
       (c) Treatment of Tier I Business Entities in Bankruptcy.--
       (1) Definition.--
       (A) In general.--In this subsection, the term ``bankrupt 
     business entity'' means a person that is not a natural person 
     that--
       (i) filed a petition for relief under chapter 11, of title 
     11, United States Code, before January 1, 2003;
       (ii) has not substantially consummated, as such term is 
     defined under section 1101(2) of title 11, United States 
     Code, a plan of reorganization as of the date of enactment of 
     this Act; and
       (iii) the bankruptcy court presiding over the business 
     entity's case determines, after notice and a hearing upon 
     motion filed by the entity within 30 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, that asbestos liability was not the 
     sole or precipitating cause of the entity's chapter 11 
     filing.
       (B) Motion and related matters.--A motion under 
     subparagraph (A)(iii) shall be supported by--
       (i) an affidavit or declaration of the chief executive 
     officer, chief financial officer, or chief legal officer of 
     the business entity; and
       (ii) copies of the entity's public statements and 
     securities filings made in connection with the entity's 
     filing for chapter 11 protection.

     Notice of such motion shall be as directed by the bankruptcy 
     court, and the hearing shall be limited to consideration of 
     the question of whether or not asbestos liability was the 
     sole or precipitating cause of the entity's chapter 11 
     filing. The bankruptcy court shall hold a hearing and make 
     its determination with respect to the motion within 30 days 
     after the date the motion is filed. In making its 
     determination, the bankruptcy court shall take into account 
     the affidavits, public statements, and securities filings, 
     and other information, if any, submitted by the entity and 
     all other facts and circumstances presented by an objecting 
     party. Any review of this determination shall be an expedited 
     appeal and limited to whether the decision was against the 
     weight of the evidence. Any appeal of a determination shall 
     be an expedited review to the United States Circuit Court of 
     Appeals for the circuit in which the bankruptcy is filed.
       (2) Proceeding with reorganization plan.--A bankrupt 
     business entity may proceed with the filing, solicitation, 
     confirmation, and consummation of a plan of reorganization 
     that does not comply with the requirements of this Act, 
     including a trust and channeling injunction described in 
     section 524(g) of title 11, United States Code, 
     notwithstanding any other provisions of this Act, if the 
     bankruptcy court makes a favorable determination under 
     paragraph (1)(B), unless the bankruptcy court's determination 
     is overruled on appeal and all appeals are

[[Page S5362]]

     final. Such a bankrupt business entity may continue to so 
     proceed, if--
       (A) on request of a party in interest or on a motion of the 
     court, and after a notice and a hearing, the bankruptcy court 
     presiding over the chapter 11 case of the bankrupt business 
     entity determines that such confirmation is required to avoid 
     the liquidation or the need for further financial 
     reorganization of that entity; and
       (B) an order confirming the plan of reorganization is 
     entered by the bankruptcy court within 9 months after the 
     date of enactment of this Act or such longer period of time 
     approved by the bankruptcy court for cause shown.
       (3) Applicability.--If the bankruptcy court does not make 
     the determination required under paragraph (2), or if an 
     order confirming the plan is not entered within 9 months 
     after the date of enactment of this Act or such longer period 
     of time approved by the bankruptcy court for cause shown, the 
     provisions of this Act shall apply to the bankrupt business 
     entity notwithstanding the certification. Any timely appeal 
     under title 11, United States Code, from a confirmation order 
     entered during the applicable time period shall automatically 
     extend the time during which this Act is inapplicable to the 
     bankrupt business entity, until the appeal is fully and 
     finally resolved.
       (4) Offsets.--
       (A) Payments by insurers.--To the extent that a bankrupt 
     business entity or debtor successfully confirms a plan of 
     reorganization, including a trust, and channeling injunction 
     that involves payments by insurers who are otherwise subject 
     to this Act as described under section 524(g) of title 11, 
     United States Code, an insurer who makes payments to the 
     trust shall obtain a dollar-for-dollar reduction in the 
     amount otherwise payable by that insurer under this Act to 
     the Fund.
       (B) Contributions to fund.--Any cash payments by a bankrupt 
     business entity, if any, to a trust described under section 
     524(g) of title 11, United States Code, may be counted as a 
     contribution to the Fund.
       (d) Tiers II Through VI.--Except as provided in section 204 
     and subsection (b) of this section, persons or affiliated 
     groups are included in Tier II, III, IV, V, or VI, according 
     to the prior asbestos expenditures paid by such persons or 
     affiliated groups as follows:
       (1) Tier II: $75,000,000 or greater.
       (2) Tier III: $50,000,000 or greater, but less than 
     $75,000,000.
       (3) Tier IV: $10,000,000 or greater, but less than 
     $50,000,000.
       (4) Tier V: $5,000,000 or greater, but less than 
     $10,000,000.
       (5) Tier VI: $1,000,000 or greater, but less than 
     $5,000,000.
       (6) Asbestos premises defendant participants.--
       (A) In general.--Asbestos premises defendant participants 
     that would be included in Tier II, III, IV or V according to 
     their prior asbestos expenditures shall, after 5 years of the 
     Fund being operational, instead be assigned to the 
     immediately lower tier, such that--
       (i) an asbestos premises defendant participant that would 
     be assigned to Tier II shall instead be assigned to Tier III;
       (ii) an asbestos premises defendant participant that would 
     be assigned to Tier III shall instead be assigned to Tier IV;
       (iii) an asbestos premises defendant participant that would 
     be assigned to Tier IV shall instead be assigned to Tier V; 
     and
       (iv) an asbestos premises defendant participant that would 
     be assigned to Tier V shall instead be assigned to Tier VI.
       (B) Return to original tier.--The Administrator may return 
     asbestos premises defendant participants to their original 
     tier, on a yearly basis, if the Administrator determines that 
     the additional revenues that would be collected are needed to 
     preserve the solvency of the Fund.
       (e) Tier Placement and Costs.--
       (1) Permanent tier placement.--After a defendant 
     participant or affiliated group is assigned to a tier and 
     subtier under section 204(i)(6), the participant or 
     affiliated group shall remain in that tier and subtier 
     throughout the life of the Fund, regardless of subsequent 
     events, including--
       (A) the filing of a petition under a chapter of title 11, 
     United States Code;
       (B) a discharge of debt in bankruptcy;
       (C) the confirmation of a plan of reorganization; or
       (D) the sale or transfer of assets to any other person or 
     affiliated group, unless the Administrator finds that the 
     information submitted by the participant or affiliated group 
     to support its inclusion in that tier was inaccurate.
       (2) Costs.--Payments to the Fund by all persons that are 
     the subject of a case under a chapter of title 11, United 
     States Code, after the date of enactment of this Act--
       (A) shall constitute costs and expenses of administration 
     of the case under section 503 of title 11, United States 
     Code, and shall be payable in accordance with the payment 
     provisions under this subtitle notwithstanding the pendency 
     of the case under that title 11;
       (B) shall not be stayed or affected as to enforcement or 
     collection by any stay or injunction power of any court; and
       (C) shall not be impaired or discharged in any current or 
     future case under title 11, United States Code.
       (f) Superseding Provisions.--
       (1) In general.--All of the following shall be superseded 
     in their entireties by this Act:
       (A) The treatment of any asbestos claim in any plan of 
     reorganization with respect to any debtor included in Tier I.
       (B) Any asbestos claim against any debtor included in Tier 
     I.
       (C) Any agreement, understanding, or undertaking by any 
     such debtor or any third party with respect to the treatment 
     of any asbestos claim filed in a debtor's bankruptcy case or 
     with respect to a debtor before the date of enactment of this 
     Act, whenever such debtor's case is either still pending, if 
     such case is pending under a chapter other than chapter 11 of 
     title 11, United States Code, or subject to confirmation or 
     substantial consummation of a plan of reorganization under 
     chapter 11 of title 11, United States Code.
       (2) Prior agreements of no effect.--Notwithstanding section 
     403(c)(3), any plan of reorganization, agreement, 
     understanding, or undertaking by any debtor (including any 
     pre-petition agreement, understanding, or undertaking that 
     requires future performance) or any third party under 
     paragraph (1), and any agreement, understanding, or 
     undertaking entered into in anticipation, contemplation, or 
     furtherance of a plan of reorganization, to the extent it 
     relates to any asbestos claim, shall be of no force or 
     effect, and no person shall have any right or claim with 
     respect to any such agreement, understanding, or undertaking.

     SEC. 203. SUBTIERS.

       (a) In General.--
       (1) Subtier liability.--Except as otherwise provided under 
     subsections (b), (d), and (l) of section 204, persons or 
     affiliated groups shall be included within Tiers I through 
     VII and shall pay amounts to the Fund in accordance with this 
     section.
       (2) Revenues.--
       (A) In general.--For purposes of this section, revenues 
     shall be determined in accordance with generally accepted 
     accounting principles, consistently applied, using the amount 
     reported as revenues in the annual report filed with the 
     Securities and Exchange Commission in accordance with the 
     Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 U.S.C. 78a et seq.) for 
     the most recent fiscal year ending on or before December 31, 
     2002. If the defendant participant or affiliated group does 
     not file reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission, 
     revenues shall be the amount that the defendant participant 
     or affiliated group would have reported as revenues under the 
     rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission in the event 
     that it had been required to file.
       (B) Insurance premiums.--Any portion of revenues of a 
     defendant participant that is derived from insurance premiums 
     shall not be used to calculate the payment obligation of that 
     defendant participant under this subtitle.
       (C) Debtors.--Each debtor's revenues shall include the 
     revenues of the debtor and all of the direct or indirect 
     majority-owned subsidiaries of that debtor, except that the 
     pro forma revenues of a person that is included in Subtier 2 
     of Tier I shall not be included in calculating the revenues 
     of any debtor that is a direct or indirect majority owner of 
     such Subtier 2 person. If a debtor or affiliated group 
     includes a person in respect of whose liabilities for 
     asbestos claims a class action trust has been established, 
     there shall be excluded from the 2002 revenues of such debtor 
     or affiliated group--
       (i) all revenues of the person in respect of whose 
     liabilities for asbestos claims the class action trust was 
     established; and
       (ii) all revenues of the debtor and affiliated group 
     attributable to the historical business operations or assets 
     of such person, regardless of whether such business 
     operations or assets were owned or conducted during the year 
     2002 by such person or by any other person included within 
     such debtor and affiliated group.
       (b) Tier I Subtiers.--
       (1) In general.--Each debtor in Tier I shall be included in 
     subtiers and shall pay amounts to the Fund as provided under 
     this section.
       (2) Subtier 1.--
       (A) In general.--All persons that are debtors with prior 
     asbestos expenditures of $1,000,000 or greater, shall be 
     included in Subtier 1.
       (B) Payment.--Each debtor included in Subtier 1 shall pay 
     on an annual basis 1.67024 percent of the debtor's 2002 
     revenues.
       (C) Other assets.--The Administrator, at the sole 
     discretion of the Administrator, may allow a Subtier 1 debtor 
     to satisfy its funding obligation under this paragraph with 
     assets other than cash if the Administrator determines that 
     requiring an all-cash payment of the debtor's funding 
     obligation would render the debtor's reorganization 
     infeasible.
       (D) Liability.--
       (i) In general.--If a person who is subject to a case 
     pending under a chapter of title 11, United States Code, as 
     defined in section 201(3)(A)(i), does not pay when due any 
     payment obligation for the debtor, the Administrator shall 
     have the right to seek payment of all or any portion of the 
     entire amount due (as well as any other amount for which the 
     debtor may be liable under sections 223 and 224) from any of 
     the direct or indirect majority-owned subsidiaries under 
     section 201(3)(A)(ii).
       (ii) Cause of action.--Notwithstanding section 221(e), this 
     Act shall not preclude actions among persons within a debtor 
     under section 201(3)(A) (i) and (ii) with respect to the 
     payment obligations under this Act.
       (iii) Right of contribution.--

[[Page S5363]]

       (I) In general.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     this Act, if a direct or indirect majority-owned foreign 
     subsidiary of a debtor participant (with such relationship to 
     the debtor participant as determined on the date of enactment 
     of this Act) is or becomes subject to any foreign insolvency 
     proceedings, and such foreign direct or indirect-majority 
     owned subsidiary is liquidated in connection with such 
     foreign insolvency proceedings (or if the debtor 
     participant's interest in such foreign subsidiary is 
     otherwise canceled or terminated in connection with such 
     foreign insolvency proceedings), the debtor participant shall 
     have a claim against such foreign subsidiary or the estate of 
     such foreign subsidiary in an amount equal to the greater 
     of--

       (aa) the estimated amount of all current and future 
     asbestos liabilities against such foreign subsidiary; or
       (bb) the foreign subsidiary's allocable share of the debtor 
     participant's funding obligations to the Fund as determined 
     by such foreign subsidiary's allocable share of the debtor 
     participant's 2002 gross revenue.

       (II) Determination of claim amount.--The claim amount under 
     subclause (I) (aa) or (bb) shall be determined by a court of 
     competent jurisdiction in the United States.
       (III) Effect on payment obligation.--The right to, or 
     recovery under, any such claim shall not reduce, limit, 
     delay, or otherwise affect the debtor participant's payment 
     obligations under this Act.

       (3) Subtier 2.--
       (A) In general.--Notwithstanding paragraph (2), all persons 
     that are debtors that have no material continuing business 
     operations, other than class action trusts under paragraph 
     (6), but hold cash or other assets that have been allocated 
     or earmarked for the settlement of asbestos claims shall be 
     included in Subtier 2.
       (B) Assignment of assets.--Not later than 90 days after the 
     date of enactment of this Act, each person included in 
     Subtier 2 shall assign all of its unencumbered assets to the 
     Fund.
       (4) Subtier 3.--
       (A) In general.--Notwithstanding paragraph (2), all persons 
     that are debtors other than those included in Subtier 2, 
     which have no material continuing business operations and no 
     cash or other assets allocated or earmarked for the 
     settlement of any asbestos claim, shall be included in 
     Subtier 3.
       (B) Assignment of unencumbered assets.--Not later than 90 
     days after the date of enactment of this Act, each person 
     included in Subtier 3 shall contribute an amount equal to 50 
     percent of its total unencumbered assets.
       (5) Calculation of unencumbered assets.--Unencumbered 
     assets shall be calculated as the Subtier 2 or 3 person's 
     total assets, excluding insurance-related assets, jointly 
     held, in trust or otherwise, with a defendant participant, 
     less--
       (A) all allowable administrative expenses;
       (B) allowable priority claims under section 507 of title 
     11, United States Code; and
       (C) allowable secured claims.
       (6) Class action trust.--The assets of any class action 
     trust that has been established in respect of the liabilities 
     for asbestos claims of any person included within a debtor 
     and affiliated group that has been included in Tier I 
     (exclusive of any assets needed to pay previously incurred 
     expenses and asbestos claims within the meaning of section 
     403(d)(1), before the date of enactment of this Act) shall be 
     transferred to the Fund not later than 60 days after the date 
     of enactment of this Act.
       (c) Tier II Subtiers.--
       (1) In general.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier II 
     shall be included in 1 of the 5 subtiers of Tier II, based on 
     the person's or affiliated group's revenues. Such subtiers 
     shall each contain as close to an equal number of total 
     persons and affiliated groups as possible, with--
       (A) those persons or affiliated groups with the highest 
     revenues included in Subtier 1;
       (B) those persons or affiliated groups with the next 
     highest revenues included in Subtier 2;
       (C) those persons or affiliated groups with the lowest 
     revenues included in Subtier 5;
       (D) those persons or affiliated groups with the next lowest 
     revenues included in Subtier 4; and
       (E) those persons or affiliated groups remaining included 
     in Subtier 3.
       (2) Payments.--Each person or affiliated group within each 
     subtier shall pay, on an annual basis, the following:
       (A) Subtier 1: $27,500,000.
       (B) Subtier 2: $24,750,000.
       (C) Subtier 3: $22,000,000.
       (D) Subtier 4: $19,250,000.
       (E) Subtier 5: $16,500,000.
       (d) Tier III Subtiers.--
       (1) In general.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier 
     III shall be included in 1 of the 5 subtiers of Tier III, 
     based on the person's or affiliated group's revenues. Such 
     subtiers shall each contain as close to an equal number of 
     total persons and affiliated groups as possible, with--
       (A) those persons or affiliated groups with the highest 
     revenues included in Subtier 1;
       (B) those persons or affiliated groups with the next 
     highest revenues included in Subtier 2;
       (C) those persons or affiliated groups with the lowest 
     revenues included in Subtier 5;
       (D) those persons or affiliated groups with the next lowest 
     revenues included in Subtier 4; and
       (E) those persons or affiliated groups remaining included 
     in Subtier 3.
       (2) Payments.--Each person or affiliated group within each 
     subtier shall pay, on an annual basis, the following:
       (A) Subtier 1: $16,500,000.
       (B) Subtier 2: $13,750,000.
       (C) Subtier 3: $11,000,000.
       (D) Subtier 4: $8,250,000.
       (E) Subtier 5: $5,500,000.
       (e) Tier IV Subtiers.--
       (1) In general.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier IV 
     shall be included in 1 of the 4 subtiers of Tier IV, based on 
     the person's or affiliated group's revenues. Such subtiers 
     shall each contain as close to an equal number of total 
     persons and affiliated groups as possible, with those persons 
     or affiliated groups with the highest revenues in Subtier 1, 
     those with the lowest revenues in Subtier 4. Those persons or 
     affiliated groups with the highest revenues among those 
     remaining will be included in Subtier 2 and the rest in 
     Subtier 3.
       (2) Payment.--Each person or affiliated group within each 
     subtier shall pay, on an annual basis, the following:
       (A) Subtier 1: $3,850,000.
       (B) Subtier 2: $2,475,000.
       (C) Subtier 3: $1,650,000.
       (D) Subtier 4: $550,000.
       (f) Tier V Subtiers.--
       (1) In general.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier V 
     shall be included in 1 of the 3 subtiers of Tier V, based on 
     the person's or affiliated group's revenues. Such subtiers 
     shall each contain as close to an equal number of total 
     persons and affiliated groups as possible, with those persons 
     or affiliated groups with the highest revenues in Subtier 1, 
     those with the lowest revenues in Subtier 3, and those 
     remaining in Subtier 2.
       (2) Payment.--Each person or affiliated group within each 
     subtier shall pay, on an annual basis, the following:
       (A) Subtier 1: $1,000,000.
       (B) Subtier 2: $500,000.
       (C) Subtier 3: $200,000.
       (g) Tier VI Subtiers.--
       (1) In general.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier VI 
     shall be included in 1 of the 3 subtiers of Tier VI, based on 
     the person's or affiliated group's revenues. Such subtiers 
     shall each contain as close to an equal number of total 
     persons and affiliated groups as possible, with those persons 
     or affiliated groups with the highest revenues in Subtier 1, 
     those with the lowest revenues in Subtier 3, and those 
     remaining in Subtier 2.
       (2) Payment.--Each person or affiliated group within each 
     subtier shall pay, on an annual basis, the following:
       (A) Subtier 1: $500,000.
       (B) Subtier 2: $250,000.
       (C) Subtier 3: $100,000.
       (3) Other payment for certain persons and affiliated 
     groups.--
       (A) In general.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     this subsection, and if an adjustment authorized by this 
     subsection does not impair the overall solvency of the Fund, 
     any person or affiliated group within Tier VI whose required 
     subtier payment in any given year would exceed such person's 
     or group's average annual expenditure on settlements, and 
     judgments of asbestos disease-related claims over the 8 years 
     before the date of enactment of this Act shall make the 
     payment required of the immediately lower subtier or, if the 
     person's or group's average annual expenditures on 
     settlements and judgments over the 8 years before the date of 
     enactment of this Act is less than $100,000, shall not be 
     required to make a payment under this Act.
       (B) No further adjustment.--Any person or affiliated group 
     that receives an adjustment under this paragraph shall not be 
     eligible to receive any further adjustment under section 
     204(d).
       (h) Tier VII.--
       (1) In general.--Notwithstanding prior asbestos 
     expenditures that might qualify a person or affiliated group 
     to be included in Tiers II, III, IV, V, or VI, a person or 
     affiliated group shall also be included in Tier VII, if the 
     person or affiliated group--
       (A) is or has at any time been subject to asbestos claims 
     brought under the Act of April 22, 1908 (45 U.S.C. 51 et 
     seq.), commonly known as the Employers' Liability Act, as a 
     result of operations as a common carrier by railroad; and
       (B) has paid (including any payments made by others on 
     behalf of such person or affiliated group) not less than 
     $5,000,000 in settlement, judgment, defense, or indemnity 
     costs relating to such claims, and such settlement, judgment, 
     defense, or indemnity costs constitute 75 percent or more of 
     the total prior asbestos expenditures by the person or 
     affiliated group.
       (2) Additional amount.--The payment requirement for persons 
     or affiliated groups included in Tier VII shall be in 
     addition to any payment requirement applicable to such person 
     or affiliated group under Tiers II through VI.
       (3) Subtier 1.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier VII 
     with revenues of $6,000,000,000 or more is included in 
     Subtier 1 and shall make annual payments of $11,000,000 to 
     the Fund.
       (4) Subtier 2.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier VII 
     with revenues of less than $6,000,000,000, but not less than 
     $4,000,000,000 is included in Subtier 2 and shall make annual 
     payments of $5,500,000 to the Fund.
       (5) Subtier 3.--Each person or affiliated group in Tier VII 
     with revenues of less than $4,000,000,000, but not less than 
     $500,000,000 is included in Subtier 3 and shall make annual 
     payments of $550,000 to the Fund.

[[Page S5364]]

       (6) Joint venture revenues and liability.--
       (A) Revenues.--For purposes of this subsection, the 
     revenues of a joint venture shall be included on a pro rata 
     basis reflecting relative joint ownership to calculate the 
     revenues of the parents of that joint venture. The joint 
     venture shall not be responsible for a contribution amount 
     under this subsection.
       (B) Liability.--For purposes of this subsection, the 
     liability under the Act of April 22, 1908 (45 U.S.C. 51 et 
     seq.), commonly known as the Employers' Liability Act, shall 
     be attributed to the parent owners of the joint venture on a 
     pro rata basis, reflecting their relative share of ownership. 
     The joint venture shall not be responsible for a payment 
     amount under this provision.

     SEC. 204. ASSESSMENT ADMINISTRATION.

       (a) In General.--
       (1) Payment.--Each defendant participant or affiliated 
     group shall pay to the Fund in the amounts provided under 
     this subtitle as appropriate for its tier and subtier each 
     year until the earlier to occur of the following:
       (A) The participant or affiliated group has satisfied its 
     obligations under this subtitle during the 30 annual payment 
     cycles of the operation of the Fund.
       (B) The amount received by the Fund from defendant 
     participants, excluding any amounts rebated to defendant 
     participants under subsections (d) and (m), equals the 
     maximum aggregate payment obligation of section 202(a)(2).
       (2) Limitation.--
       (A) Definition.--In this paragraph, the term ``affiliated 
     group'' shall include any defendant participant that is an 
     ultimate parent.
       (B) In general.--For any affiliated group, the total 
     payment in any year, including any guaranteed payment 
     surcharge under subsection (l) and any bankruptcy trust 
     guarantee surcharge under section 222(c), shall not exceed 
     the lesser of $16,702,400 or 1.67024 percent of the revenues 
     of the affiliated group for the most recent fiscal year 
     ending on or before December 31, 2002, or for the most recent 
     12-month fiscal year as of the date the limitation is 
     applied, whichever is greater.
       (C) Exception.--The limitation in this paragraph shall not 
     apply to defendant participants in Tier I or to any 
     affiliated group whose revenues for the most recent fiscal 
     year ending on or before December 31, 2002, or for the most 
     recent 12-month fiscal year as of the date the limitation 
     applied, whichever is greater, exceeds $1,000,000,000.
       (D) Determinations.--The revenues of the affiliated group 
     shall be determined in accordance with section 203(a)(2), 
     except for the applicable date. An affiliated group that 
     claims a reduction in its payment in any year shall file with 
     the Administrator, in accordance with procedures prescribed 
     by the Administrator, sufficient information to allow the 
     Administrator to determine the amount of any such reduction 
     in that year. If as a result of the application of the 
     limitation provided in this paragraph an affiliated group is 
     exempt from paying all or part of a guaranteed payment 
     surcharge or bankruptcy trust surcharge, then the reduction 
     in the affiliated group's payment obligation due to the 
     limitation in this subsection shall be redistributed in 
     accordance with subsection (l).
       (E) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this paragraph shall 
     be construed as reducing the minimum aggregate annual payment 
     obligation of defendant participants as provided under 
     subsection (h).
       (b) Small Business Exemption.--Notwithstanding any other 
     provision of this subtitle, a person or affiliated group that 
     is a small business concern (as defined under section 3 of 
     the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632)), on December 31, 
     2002, is exempt from any payment requirement under this 
     subtitle and shall not be included in the subtier allocations 
     under section 203.
       (c) Procedures.--The Administrator shall prescribe 
     procedures on how amounts payable under this subtitle are to 
     be paid, including, to the extent the Administrator 
     determines appropriate, procedures relating to payment in 
     installments.
       (d) Adjustments.--
       (1) In general.--Under expedited procedures established by 
     the Administrator, a defendant participant may seek 
     adjustment of the amount of its payment obligation based on 
     severe financial hardship or demonstrated inequity. The 
     Administrator may determine whether to grant an adjustment 
     and the size of any such adjustment, in accordance with this 
     subsection. A defendant participant has a right to obtain a 
     rehearing of the Administrator's determination under this 
     subsection under the procedures prescribed in subsection 
     (i)(10). The Administrator may adjust a defendant 
     participant's payment obligations under this subsection, 
     either by forgiving the relevant portion of the otherwise 
     applicable payment obligation or by providing relevant 
     rebates from the defendant hardship and inequity adjustment 
     account created under subsection (j) after payment of the 
     otherwise applicable payment obligation, at the discretion of 
     the Administrator.
       (2) Financial hardship adjustments.--
       (A) In general.--Any defendant participant in any tier may 
     apply for an adjustment under this paragraph at any time 
     during the period in which a payment obligation to the Fund 
     remains outstanding and may qualify for such an adjustment by 
     demonstrating to the satisfaction of the Administrator that 
     the amount of its payment obligation would materially and 
     adversely affect the defendant participant's ability to 
     continue its business and to pay or satisfy its debts 
     generally as and when they come due. Such an adjustment shall 
     be in an amount that in the judgment of the Administrator is 
     reasonably necessary to prevent such material and adverse 
     effect on the defendant participant's ability to continue its 
     business and to pay or satisfy its debts generally as and 
     when they come due.
       (B) Factors to consider.--In determining whether to make an 
     adjustment under subparagraph (A) and the amount thereof, the 
     Administrator shall consider--
       (i) the financial situation of the defendant participant 
     and its affiliated group as shown in historical audited 
     financial statements, including income statement, balance 
     sheet, and statement of cash flow, for the 3 fiscal years 
     ending immediately before the application and projected 
     financial statements for the 3 fiscal years following the 
     application;
       (ii) an analysis of capital spending and fixed charge 
     coverage on a historical basis for the 3 fiscal years 
     immediately preceding a defendant participant's application 
     and for the 3 fiscal years following the application;
       (iii) any payments or transfers of property made, or 
     obligations incurred, within the preceding 6 years by the 
     defendant participant to or for the benefit of any insider as 
     defined under section 101(31) of title 11, United States 
     Code, or any affiliate as defined under section 101(2) of 
     title 11, United States Code;
       (iv) any prior extraordinary transactions within the 
     preceding 6 years involving the defendant participant, 
     including payments of extraordinary salaries, bonuses, or 
     dividends;
       (v) the defendant participant's ability to satisfy its 
     payment obligation to the Fund by borrowing or financing with 
     equity capital, or through issuance of securities of the 
     defendant participant or its affiliated group to the Fund;
       (vi) the defendant participant's ability to delay 
     discretionary capital spending; and
       (vii) any other factor that the Administrator considers 
     relevant.
       (C) Term.--A financial hardship adjustment under this 
     paragraph shall have a term of 5 years unless the 
     Administrator determines at the time the adjustment is made 
     that a shorter or longer period is appropriate in the light 
     of the financial condition of the defendant participant and 
     its affiliated group and other relevant factors, provided 
     that a financial hardship adjustment under this paragraph 
     shall terminate automatically in the event that the defendant 
     participant holding the adjustment files a petition under 
     title 11, United States Code.
       (D) Renewal.--A defendant participant may renew a hardship 
     adjustment upon expiration by demonstrating that it remains 
     justified. Such renewed hardship adjustments shall have a 
     term of 5 years unless the Administrator determines at the 
     time of the renewed adjustment that a shorter or longer 
     period is appropriate in light of the financial condition of 
     the defendant participant and its affiliated group and other 
     relevant factors. A renewed financial hardship adjustment 
     under this paragraph shall terminate automatically in the 
     event that the defendant participant holding the adjustment 
     files a petition under title 11, United States Code.
       (E) Procedure.--
       (i) In general.--The Administrator shall prescribe the 
     information to be submitted in applications for adjustments 
     under this paragraph.
       (ii) Financial information.--All audited financial 
     information required under this paragraph shall be as 
     reported by the defendant participant in its annual report 
     filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission in 
     accordance with the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (15 
     U.S.C. 78a et seq.). Any defendant participant that does not 
     file reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission or 
     which does not have audited financial statements shall submit 
     financial statements prepared in accordance with generally 
     accepted accounting principles. The chairman, chief executive 
     officer, and chief financial officer of the defendant 
     participant shall certify under penalty of law the 
     completeness and accuracy of the financial statements 
     provided under this subparagraph.
       (iii) Certification.--The chairman, chief executive 
     officer, and chief financial officer of the defendant 
     participant shall certify that any projected information and 
     analyses submitted to the Administrator were made in good 
     faith and are reasonable and attainable.
       (3) Inequity adjustments.--
       (A) In general.--A defendant participant--
       (i) may qualify for an adjustment based on inequity by 
     demonstrating that the amount of its payment obligation under 
     the statutory allocation is exceptionally inequitable--

       (I) when measured against the amount of the likely cost to 
     the defendant participant net of insurance of its future 
     liability in the tort system in the absence of the Fund;
       (II) when measured against the likely cost of past and 
     potential future claims in the absence of this Act;
       (III) when compared to the median payment rate for all 
     defendant participants in the same tier; or
       (IV) when measured against the percentage of the prior 
     asbestos expenditures of the defendant that were incurred 
     with respect to claims that neither resulted in an adverse 
     judgment against the defendant, nor were the subject of a 
     settlement that required a

[[Page S5365]]

     payment to a plaintiff by or on behalf of that defendant;

       (ii) shall qualify for a 2-tier main tier and a 2-tier 
     subtier adjustment reducing the defendant participant's 
     payment obligation based on inequity by demonstrating that 
     not less than 95 percent of such person's prior asbestos 
     expenditures arose from claims related to the manufacture and 
     sale of railroad locomotives and related products, so long as 
     such person's manufacture and sale of railroad locomotives 
     and related products is temporally and causally remote, and 
     for purposes of this clause, a person's manufacture and sale 
     of railroad locomotives and related products shall be deemed 
     to be temporally and causally remote if the asbestos claims 
     historically and generally filed against such person relate 
     to the manufacture and sale of railroad locomotives and 
     related products by an entity dissolved more than 25 years 
     before the date of enactment of this Act;
       (iii) shall be granted a 2-tier adjustment reducing the 
     defendant participant's payment obligation based on inequity 
     by demonstrating that not less than 95 percent of such 
     participant's prior asbestos expenditures arose from asbestos 
     claims based on successor liability arising from a merger to 
     which the participant or its predecessor was a party that 
     occurred at least 30 years before the date of enactment of 
     this Act, and that such prior asbestos expenditures exceed 
     the inflation-adjusted value of the assets of the company 
     from which such liability was derived in such merger, and 
     upon such demonstration the Administrator shall grant such 
     adjustment for the life of the Fund and amounts paid by such 
     defendant participant prior to such adjustment in excess of 
     its adjusted payment obligation under this clause shall be 
     credited against next succeeding required payment 
     obligations; and
       (iv) may, subject to the discretion of the Administrator, 
     be exempt from any payment obligation if such defendant 
     participant establishes with the Administrator that--

       (I) such participant has satisfied all past claims; and
       (II) there is no reasonable likelihood in the absence of 
     this Act of any future claims with costs for which the 
     defendant participant might be responsible.

       (B) Guidelines.--
       (i) In general.--In determining which defendant 
     participants may receive inequity adjustments, the 
     Administrator shall give preference in the following order:

       (I) Defendant participants that have significant insurance 
     coverage applicable to asbestos claims, such that on the date 
     of enactment of this Act, 80 percent or more of their 
     available primary insurance limits for asbestos claims 
     remains available.
       (II) Defendant participants for which, under the guidance 
     in section 404(a)(2)(E), 75 percent of the prior asbestos 
     expenditures of such defendant participants were caused by or 
     arose from premise liability claims.
       (III) Defendant participants that can demonstrate that 
     their prior asbestos expenditures are inflated due to an 
     unusually large, anomalous verdict and that such verdict has 
     caused such defendants to be in a higher tier.
       (IV) Any other factor determined reasonable by the 
     Administrator to have caused a serious inequity.

       (ii) Consideration.--In determining whether a defendant 
     participant has significant insurance coverage applicable to 
     asbestos claims such that on the date of enactment of this 
     Act, 80 percent or more of their available primary insurance 
     limits for asbestos claims remains available, the 
     Administrator shall inquire and consider--

       (I) the defendant participant's expected future liability 
     in the tort system and the adequacy of insurance available 
     measured against future liability; and
       (II) whether the insurance coverage is uncontested, or 
     based on a final judgment or settlement.

       (C) Payment rate.--For purposes of subparagraph (A), the 
     payment rate of a defendant participant is the payment amount 
     of the defendant participant as a percentage of such 
     defendant participant's gross revenues for the year ending 
     December 31, 2002.
       (D) Term.--Subject to the annual availability of funds in 
     the defendant inequity adjustment account established under 
     subsection (j), an inequity adjustment under this subsection 
     shall have a term of 3 years.
       (E) Renewal.--A defendant participant may renew an inequity 
     adjustment every 3 years by demonstrating that the adjustment 
     remains justified.
       (F) Reinstatement.--
       (i) In general.--Following the termination of an inequity 
     adjustment under subparagraph (A), and during the funding 
     period prescribed under subsection (a), the Administrator 
     shall annually determine whether there has been a material 
     change in conditions which would support a finding that the 
     amount of the defendant participant's payment under the 
     statutory allocation was not inequitable. Based on this 
     determination, the Administrator may, consistent with the 
     policies and legislative intent underlying this Act, 
     reinstate any or all of the payment obligations of the 
     defendant participant as if the inequity adjustment had not 
     been granted for that 3-year period.
       (ii) Terms and conditions.--In the event of a reinstatement 
     under clause (i), the Administrator may require the defendant 
     participant to pay any part or all of amounts not paid due to 
     the inequity adjustment on such terms and conditions as 
     established by the Administrator.
       (4) Tier ii adjustments for well-insured defendant 
     participants.--
       (A) Definitions.--In this paragraph--
       (i) the term ``adjusted cash flow from operating 
     activities'' means audited cash flows from operating 
     activities as set forth in the Financial Accounting Standards 
     Board Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 95 in 
     effect on the date of enactment of this Act, adjusted for 
     amounts--

       (I) increased by cash paid for interest and taxes to the 
     extent that such amounts are included in cash flows from 
     operating activities;
       (II) increased by payments made for asbestos indemnity, 
     defense costs, and any payments required under this Act, to 
     the extent that such amounts are included in cash flows from 
     operating activities;
       (III) increased by nonrecurring and unusual cash charges, 
     including restructuring charges and other non-operating 
     costs, to the extent that such amounts are included in cash 
     flows from operating activities;
       (IV) decreased by cash distributions to minority interests 
     to the extent that such amounts are included in cash flows 
     from investing activities and cash flows from financing 
     activities;
       (V) increased by cash proceeds on sales of assets net of 
     related secured debt, affiliates, subsidiaries, and 
     investments to the extent that such amounts are included in 
     cash flows from investing and cash flows from financing 
     activities;
       (VI) increased by cash distributions from nonconsolidated 
     affiliates and investments to the extent that such amounts 
     are included in cash flows from investing activities and cash 
     flows from financing activities;
       (VII) increased by net cash flow used by, and decreased by 
     net cash flow gained from, working capital items to the 
     extent such amounts are not already adjusted under this 
     subparagraph and are included in cash flows from operating 
     activities;
       (VIII) increased by net cash flow used by, and decreased by 
     net cash flow gained from, other nonworking capital assets 
     and liabilities, to the extent such amounts are not already 
     adjusted under this subparagraph and are included in cash 
     flows from operating activities;
       (IX) decreased by reimbursements or cash proceeds received 
     from asbestos insurance policies for related expenses, to the 
     extent that such amounts are included in cash flows from 
     operating activities; and
       (X) decreased by other nonoperating cash income; and

       (ii) the term ``working capital'' means current assets 
     (excluding cash and short-term investments) less current 
     liabilities (excluding short-term debt).
       (B) Election of alternative adjustment.--Except for 
     defendant participants that consent to be assigned to Tier II 
     under section 204(i)(7)(A), a defendant participant assigned 
     to subtier 3, 4, or 5 of Tier II may elect the adjustment 
     under this paragraph, which shall apply instead of an 
     adjustment under paragraph (3).
       (C) Adjustment.--Subject to subparagraphs (D) and (E), the 
     annual payment obligation, taking into consideration the 
     limitation under subsection (a)(2), of any defendant 
     participant that elects the adjustment under this paragraph 
     shall be adjusted so as not to exceed the greater of $500,000 
     or 5 percent of that defendant participant's adjusted cash 
     flow from operating activities for the most recent fiscal 
     year ending on or before December 31, 2002, or for the most 
     recent fiscal year.
       (D) Limitation.--The aggregate total of adjustments under 
     this paragraph in any year may not exceed $100,000,000. If 
     the aggregate amount of adjustments authorized under this 
     paragraph exceeds $100,000,000, the adjustment to which each 
     defendant participant electing such an adjustment shall be 
     reduced pro rata until the aggregate of all adjustments 
     equals $100,000,000.
       (E) Surcharges.--Defendant participants receiving an 
     adjustment under this paragraph shall also be subject to the 
     guaranteed payment surcharge under subsection (m) and the 
     bankruptcy trust surcharge under section 222(c). Such 
     surcharges shall be based on the full amount of any 
     adjustment to which the defendant participant would be 
     entitled under subparagraph (C) without regard to the 
     limitation under subparagraph (D).
       (5) Limitation on adjustments.--The aggregate total of 
     inequity adjustments under paragraph (3) in effect in any 
     given year shall not exceed $200,000,000, except to the 
     extent that additional monies are available for such 
     adjustments as a result of carryover of prior years' funds 
     under subsection (j)(3) or as a result of monies being made 
     available in that year under subsection (k)(1)(A).
       (6) Rulemaking and advisory panels.--
       (A) Appointment.--The Administrator may appoint a Financial 
     Hardship Adjustment Panel and an Inequity Adjustment Panel to 
     advise the Administrator in carrying out this subsection.
       (B) Membership.--The membership of the panels appointed 
     under subparagraph (A) may overlap.
       (C) Coordination.--The panels appointed under subparagraph 
     (A) shall coordinate their deliberations and advice.
       (D) Rules.--The Administrator may adopt rules consistent 
     with this Act to make the determination of hardship and 
     inequity adjustments more efficient and predictable.
       (e) Limitation on Liability.--The liability of each 
     defendant participant to pay to the Fund shall be limited to 
     the payment obligations under this Act, and, except as 
     provided

[[Page S5366]]

     in subsection (f) and section 203(b)(2)(D), no defendant 
     participant shall have any liability for the payment 
     obligations of any other defendant participant.
       (f) Consolidation of Payments.--
       (1) In general.--For purposes of determining the payment 
     levels of defendant participants, any affiliated group 
     including 1 or more defendant participants may irrevocably 
     elect, as part of the submissions to be made under paragraphs 
     (1) and (3) of subsection (i), to report on a consolidated 
     basis all of the information necessary to determine the 
     payment level under this subtitle and pay to the Fund on a 
     consolidated basis.
       (2) Election.--If an affiliated group elects consolidation 
     as provided in this subsection--
       (A) for purposes of this Act other than this subsection, 
     the affiliated group shall be treated as if it were a single 
     participant, including with respect to the assessment of a 
     single annual payment under this subtitle for the entire 
     affiliated group;
       (B) the ultimate parent of the affiliated group shall 
     prepare and submit each submission to be made under 
     subsection (i) on behalf of the entire affiliated group and 
     shall be solely liable, as between the Administrator and the 
     affiliated group only, for the payment of the annual amount 
     due from the affiliated group under this subtitle, except 
     that, if the ultimate parent does not pay when due any 
     payment obligation for the affiliated group, the 
     Administrator shall have the right to seek payment of all or 
     any portion of the entire amount due (as well as any other 
     amount for which the affiliated group may be liable under 
     sections 223 and 224) from any member of the affiliated 
     group;
       (C) all members of the affiliated group shall be identified 
     in the submission under subsection (i) and shall certify 
     compliance with this subsection and the Administrator's 
     regulations implementing this subsection; and
       (D) the obligations under this subtitle shall not change 
     even if, after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
     beneficial ownership interest between any members of the 
     affiliated group shall change.
       (3) Cause of action.--Notwithstanding section 221(e), this 
     Act shall not preclude actions among persons within an 
     affiliated group with respect to the payment obligations 
     under this Act.
       (g) Determination of Prior Asbestos Expenditures.--
       (1) In general.--For purposes of determining a defendant 
     participant's prior asbestos expenditures, the Administrator 
     shall prescribe such rules as may be necessary or appropriate 
     to assure that payments by indemnitors before December 31, 
     2002, shall be counted as part of the indemnitor's prior 
     asbestos expenditures, rather than the indemnitee's prior 
     asbestos expenditures, in accordance with this subsection.
       (2) Indemnifiable costs.--If an indemnitor has paid or 
     reimbursed to an indemnitee any indemnifiable cost or 
     otherwise made a payment on behalf of or for the benefit of 
     an indemnitee to a third party for an indemnifiable cost 
     before December 31, 2002, the amount of such indemnifiable 
     cost shall be solely for the account of the indemnitor for 
     purposes under this Act.
       (3) Insurance payments.--When computing the prior asbestos 
     expenditures with respect to an asbestos claim, any amount 
     paid or reimbursed by insurance shall be solely for the 
     account of the indemnitor, even if the indemnitor would have 
     no direct right to the benefit of the insurance, if--
       (A) such insurance has been paid or reimbursed to the 
     indemnitor or the indemnitee, or paid on behalf of or for the 
     benefit of the indemnitee; and
       (B) the indemnitor has either, with respect to such 
     asbestos claim or any similar asbestos claim, paid or 
     reimbursed to its indemnitee any indemnifiable cost or paid 
     to any third party on behalf of or for the benefit of the 
     indemnitee any indemnifiable cost.
       (4) Treatment of certain expenditures.--Notwithstanding any 
     other provision of this Act, where--
       (A) an indemnitor entered into a stock purchase agreement 
     in 1988 that involved the sale of the stock of businesses 
     that produced friction and other products; and
       (B) the stock purchase agreement provided that the 
     indemnitor indemnified the indemnitee and its affiliates for 
     losses arising from various matters, including asbestos 
     claims--
       (i) asserted before the date of the agreement; and
       (ii) filed after the date of the agreement and prior to the 
     10-year anniversary of the stock sale,

     then the prior asbestos expenditures arising from the 
     asbestos claims described in clauses (i) and (ii) shall not 
     be for the account of either the indemnitor or indemnitee.
       (h) Minimum Annual Payments.--
       (1) In general.--The aggregate annual payments of defendant 
     participants to the Fund shall be at least $3,000,000,000 for 
     each calendar year in the first 30 years of the Fund, or 
     until such shorter time as the condition set forth in 
     subsection (a)(2) is attained.
       (2) Guaranteed payment account.--To the extent payments in 
     accordance with sections 202 and 203 (as modified by 
     subsections (b), (d), (f), (g), and (m) of this section) fail 
     in any year to raise at least $3,000,000,000, after 
     applicable reductions or adjustments have been taken 
     according to subsections (d) and (m), the balance needed to 
     meet this required minimum aggregate annual payment shall be 
     obtained from the defendant guaranteed payment account 
     established under subsection (k).
       (3) Guaranteed payment surcharge.--To the extent the 
     procedure set forth in paragraph (2) is insufficient to 
     satisfy the required minimum aggregate annual payment, after 
     applicable reductions or adjustments have been taken 
     according to subsections (d) and (m), the Administrator shall 
     unless the Administrator implements a funding holiday under 
     section 205(b), assess a guaranteed payment surcharge under 
     subsection (l).
       (i) Procedures for Making Payments.--
       (1) Initial year: tiers ii-vi.--
       (A) In general.--Not later than 90 days after enactment of 
     this Act, each defendant participant that is included in 
     Tiers II, III, IV, V, or VI shall file with the 
     Administrator--
       (i) a statement of whether the defendant participant 
     irrevocably elects to report on a consolidated basis under 
     subsection (f);
       (ii) a good-faith estimate of its prior asbestos 
     expenditures;
       (iii) a statement of its 2002 revenues, determined in 
     accordance with section 203(a)(2);
       (iv) payment in the amount specified in section 203 for the 
     lowest subtier of the tier within which the defendant 
     participant falls, except that if the defendant participant, 
     or the affiliated group including the defendant participant, 
     had 2002 revenues exceeding $3,000,000,000, it or its 
     affiliated group shall pay the amount specified for Subtier 3 
     of Tiers II, III, or IV or Subtier 2 of Tiers V or VI, 
     depending on the applicable Tier; and
       (v) a signature page personally verifying the truth of the 
     statements and estimates described under this subparagraph, 
     as required under section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 
     2002 (15 U.S.C. 7201 et seq.).
       (B) Relief.--
       (i) In general.--The Administrator shall establish 
     procedures to grant a defendant participant relief from its 
     initial payment obligation if the participant shows that--

       (I) the participant is likely to qualify for a financial 
     hardship adjustment; and
       (II) failure to provide interim relief would cause severe 
     irreparable harm.

       (ii) Judicial relief.--The Administrator's refusal to grant 
     relief under clause (i) is subject to immediate judicial 
     review under section 303.
       (2) Initial year: tier i.--Not later than 60 days after 
     enactment of this Act, each debtor shall file with the 
     Administrator--
       (A) a statement identifying the bankruptcy case(s) 
     associated with the debtor;
       (B) a statement whether its prior asbestos expenditures 
     exceed $1,000,000;
       (C) a statement whether it has material continuing business 
     operations and, if not, whether it holds cash or other assets 
     that have been allocated or earmarked for asbestos 
     settlements;
       (D) in the case of debtors falling within Subtier 1 of Tier 
     I--
       (i) a statement of the debtor's 2002 revenues, determined 
     in accordance with section 203(a)(2); and
       (ii) a payment under section 203(b)(2)(B);
       (E) in the case of debtors falling within Subtier 2 of Tier 
     I, an assignment of its assets under section 203(b)(3)(B);
       (F) in the case of debtors falling within Subtier 3 of Tier 
     I, a payment under section 203(b)(4)(B), and a statement of 
     how such payment was calculated; and
       (G) a signature page personally verifying the truth of the 
     statements and estimates described under this paragraph, as 
     required under section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 
     (15 U.S.C. 7201 et seq.).
       (3) Initial year: tier vii.--Not later than 90 days after 
     enactment of this Act, each defendant participant in Tier VII 
     shall file with the Administrator--
       (A) a good faith estimate of all payments of the type 
     described in section 203(h)(1) (as modified by section 
     203(h)(6));
       (B) a statement of revenues calculated in accordance with 
     sections 203(a)(2) and 203(h); and
       (C) payment in the amount specified in section 203(h).
       (4) Notice to participants.--Not later than 240 days after 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall--
       (A) directly notify all reasonably identifiable defendant 
     participants of the requirement to submit information 
     necessary to calculate the amount of any required payment to 
     the Fund; and
       (B) publish in the Federal Register a notice--
       (i) setting forth the criteria in this Act, and as 
     prescribed by the Administrator in accordance with this Act, 
     for paying under this subtitle as a defendant participant and 
     requiring any person who may be a defendant participant to 
     submit such information; and
       (ii) that includes a list of all defendant participants 
     notified by the Administrator under subparagraph (A), and 
     provides for 30 days for the submission by the public of 
     comments or information regarding the completeness and 
     accuracy of the list of identified defendant participants.
       (5) Response required.--
       (A) In general.--Any person who receives notice under 
     paragraph (4)(A), and any other person meeting the criteria 
     specified in the notice published under paragraph (4)(B), 
     shall provide the Administrator with an address to send any 
     notice from the Administrator in accordance with this Act and 
     all

[[Page S5367]]

     the information required by the Administrator in accordance 
     with this subsection no later than the earlier of--
       (i) 30 days after the receipt of direct notice; or
       (ii) 30 days after the publication of notice in the Federal 
     Register.
       (B) Certification.--The response submitted under 
     subparagraph (A) shall be signed by a responsible corporate 
     officer, general partner, proprietor, or individual of 
     similar authority, who shall certify under penalty of law the 
     completeness and accuracy of the information submitted.
       (C) Consent to audit authority.--The response submitted 
     under subparagraph (A) shall include, on behalf of the 
     defendant participant or affiliated group, a consent to the 
     Administrator's audit authority under section 221(d).
       (6) Notice of initial determination.--
       (A) In general.--
       (i) Notice to individual.--Not later than 60 days after 
     receiving a response under paragraph (5), the Administrator 
     shall send the person a notice of initial determination 
     identifying the tier and subtier, if any, into which the 
     person falls and the annual payment obligation, if any, to 
     the Fund, which determination shall be based on the 
     information received from the person under this subsection 
     and any other pertinent information available to the 
     Administrator and identified to the defendant participant.
       (ii) Public notice.--Not later than 7 days after sending 
     the notification of initial determination to defendant 
     participants, the Administrator shall publish in the Federal 
     Register a notice listing the defendant participants that 
     have been sent such notification, and the initial 
     determination identifying the tier and subtier assignment and 
     annual payment obligation of each identified participant.
       (B) No response; incomplete response.--If no response in 
     accordance with paragraph (5) is received from a defendant 
     participant, or if the response is incomplete, the initial 
     determination shall be based on the best information 
     available to the Administrator.
       (C) Payments.--Within 30 days of receiving a notice of 
     initial determination requiring payment, the defendant 
     participant shall pay the Administrator the amount required 
     by the notice, after deducting any previous payment made by 
     the participant under this subsection. If the amount that the 
     defendant participant is required to pay is less than any 
     previous payment made by the participant under this 
     subsection, the Administrator shall credit any excess payment 
     against the future payment obligations of that defendant 
     participant. The pendency of a petition for rehearing under 
     paragraph (10) shall not stay the obligation of the 
     participant to make the payment specified in the 
     Administrator's notice.
       (7) Exemptions for information required.--
       (A) Prior asbestos expenditures.--In lieu of submitting 
     information related to prior asbestos expenditures as may be 
     required for purposes of this subtitle, a nondebtor defendant 
     participant may consent to be assigned to Tier II.
       (B) Revenues.--In lieu of submitting information related to 
     revenues as may be required for purposes of this subtitle, a 
     nondebtor defendant participant may consent to be assigned to 
     Subtier 1 of the defendant participant's applicable tier.
       (8) New information.--
       (A) Existing participant.--The Administrator shall adopt 
     procedures for requiring additional payment, or refunding 
     amounts already paid, based on new information received.
       (B) Additional participant.--If the Administrator, at any 
     time, receives information that an additional person may 
     qualify as a defendant participant, the Administrator shall 
     require such person to submit information necessary to 
     determine whether that person is required to make payments, 
     and in what amount, under this subtitle and shall make any 
     determination or take any other act consistent with this Act 
     based on such information or any other information available 
     to the Administrator with respect to such person.
       (9) Subpoenas.--The Administrator may request the Attorney 
     General to subpoena persons to compel testimony, records, and 
     other information relevant to its responsibilities under this 
     section. The Attorney General may enforce such subpoena in 
     appropriate proceedings in the United States district court 
     for the district in which the person to whom the subpoena was 
     addressed resides, was served, or transacts business.
       (10) Rehearing.--A defendant participant has a right to 
     obtain rehearing of the Administrator's determination under 
     this subsection of the applicable tier or subtier of the 
     Administrator's determination under subsection (d) of a 
     financial hardship or inequity adjustment, and of the 
     Administrator's determination under subsection (m) of a 
     distributor's adjustment, if the request for rehearing is 
     filed within 30 days after the defendant participant's 
     receipt of notice from the Administrator of the 
     determination. A defendant participant may not file an action 
     under section 303 unless the defendant participant requests a 
     rehearing under this paragraph. The Administrator shall 
     publish a notice in the Federal Register of any change in a 
     defendant participant's tier or subtier assignment or payment 
     obligation as a result of a rehearing.
       (j) Defendant Inequity Adjustment Account.--
       (1) In general.--To the extent the total payments by 
     defendant participants in any given year exceed the minimum 
     aggregate annual payments required under subsection (h), 
     excess monies up to a maximum of $200,000,000 in any such 
     year shall be placed in a defendant inequity adjustment 
     account established within the Fund by the Administrator.
       (2) Use of account monies.--Monies from the defendant 
     inequity adjustment account shall be preserved and 
     administered like the remainder of the Fund, but shall be 
     reserved and may be used only--
       (A) to make up for any relief granted to a defendant 
     participant for demonstrated inequity under subsection (d) or 
     to reimburse any defendant participant granted such relief 
     after its payment of the amount otherwise due; and
       (B) if the condition set forth in subsection (a)(2) is met, 
     for any purpose that the Fund may serve under this Act.
       (3) Carryover of unused funds.--To the extent the 
     Administrator does not, in any given year, use all of the 
     funds allocated to the account under paragraph (1) for 
     adjustments granted under subsection (d), remaining funds in 
     the account shall be carried forward for use by the 
     Administrator for adjustments in subsequent years.
       (k) Defendant Guaranteed Payment Account.--
       (1) In general.--Subject to subsections (h) and (j), if 
     there are excess monies paid by defendant participants in any 
     given year, including any bankruptcy trust credits that may 
     be due under section 222(d), such monies--
       (A) at the discretion of the Administrator, may be used to 
     provide additional adjustments under subsection (d), up to a 
     maximum aggregate of $50,000,000 in such year; and
       (B) to the extent not used under subparagraph (A), shall be 
     placed in a defendant guaranteed payment account established 
     within the Fund by the Administrator.
       (2) Use of account monies.--Monies from the defendant 
     guaranteed payment account shall be preserved and 
     administered like the remainder of the Fund, but shall be 
     reserved and may be used only--
       (A) to ensure the minimum aggregate annual payment required 
     under subsection (h), after applicable reductions or 
     adjustments have been taken according to subsections (d) and 
     (m) is reached each year; and
       (B) if the condition set forth in subsection (a)(2) is met, 
     for any purpose that the Fund may serve under this Act.
       (l) Guaranteed Payment Surcharge.--
       (1) In general.--To the extent there are insufficient 
     monies in the defendant guaranteed payment account 
     established in subsection (k) to attain the minimum aggregate 
     annual payment required under subsection (h) in any given 
     year, the Administrator shall, unless the Administrator 
     implements a funding holiday under section 205(b), impose on 
     each defendant participant a surcharge as necessary to raise 
     the balance required to attain the minimum aggregate annual 
     payment required under subsection (h) as provided in this 
     subsection. Any such surcharge shall be imposed on a pro rata 
     basis, in accordance with each defendant participant's 
     relative annual liability under sections 202 and 203 (as 
     modified by subsections (b), (d), (f), (g), and (m) of this 
     section).
       (2) Limitation.--
       (A) Definition.--In this paragraph, the term ``economically 
     distressed industry'' means an industry, defined by a primary 
     5-digit NAICS code, wherein 2 or more defendant participants 
     are in Subtier 1 of Tier II under sections 202 and 203, and 
     at least \2/3\ of such Tier II defendant participants 
     suffered net operating losses in their United States 
     manufacturing business in 2005.
       (B) In general.--In no case shall the Administrator--
       (i) impose a surcharge under this subsection on any 
     defendant participant included in Subtier 3 of Tier V or VI 
     as described under section 203; or
       (ii) notwithstanding paragraph (1), impose in any year a 
     surcharge under this subsection on any defendant participant 
     in an economically distressed industry in excess of 15 
     percent of the amount set forth for Subtier 1 of Tier II 
     defendant participants under section 203(c)(2)(A).
       (C) Reallocation.--Any amount not imposed under 
     subparagraph (B) shall be reallocated on a pro rata basis, in 
     accordance with each defendant participant's (other than a 
     defendant participant described under subparagraph (B) 
     relative annual liability under sections 202 and 203 (as 
     modified by subsections (b), (d), (f), and (g) of this 
     section).
       (3) Certification.--
       (A) In general.--Before imposing a guaranteed payment 
     surcharge under this subsection, the Administrator shall 
     certify that he or she has used all reasonable efforts to 
     collect mandatory payments for all defendant participants, 
     including by using the authority in subsection (i)(9) of this 
     section and section 223.
       (B) Notice and comment.--Before making a final 
     certification under subparagraph (C), the Administrator shall 
     publish a notice in the Federal Register of a proposed 
     certification and provide in such notice for a public comment 
     period of 30 days.
       (C) Final certification.--
       (i) In general.--The Administrator shall publish a notice 
     of the final certification in the Federal Register after 
     consideration of

[[Page S5368]]

     all comments submitted under subparagraph (B).
       (ii) Written notice.--Not later than 30 days after 
     publishing any final certification under clause (i), the 
     Administrator shall provide each defendant participant with 
     written notice of that defendant participant's payment, 
     including the amount of any surcharge.
       (m) Adjustments for Distributors.--
       (1) Definition.--In this subsection, the term 
     ``distributor'' means a person--
       (A) whose prior asbestos expenditures arise exclusively 
     from the sale of products manufactured by others;
       (B) who did not prior to December 31, 2002, sell raw 
     asbestos or a product containing more than 95 percent 
     asbestos by weight;
       (C) whose prior asbestos expenditures did not arise out 
     of--
       (i) the manufacture, installation, repair, reconditioning, 
     maintaining, servicing, constructing, or remanufacturing of 
     any product;
       (ii) the control of the design, specification, or 
     manufacture of any product; or
       (iii) the sale or resale of any product under, as part of, 
     or under the auspices of, its own brand, trademark, or 
     service mark; and
       (D) who is not subject to assignment under section 202 to 
     Tier I, II, III or VII.
       (2) Tier reassignment for distributors.--
       (A) In general.--Notwithstanding section 202, the 
     Administrator shall assign a distributor to a Tier for 
     purposes of this title under the procedures set forth in this 
     paragraph.
       (B) Designation.--After a final determination by the 
     Administrator under section 204(i), any person who is, or any 
     affiliated group in which every member is, a distributor may 
     apply to the Administrator for adjustment of its Tier 
     assignment under this subsection. Such application shall be 
     prepared in accordance with such procedures as the 
     Administrator shall promulgate by rule. Once the 
     Administrator designates a person or affiliated group as a 
     distributor under this subsection, such designation and the 
     adjustment of tier assignment under this subsection are 
     final.
       (C) Payments.--Any person or affiliated group that seeks 
     adjustment of its Tier assignment under this subsection shall 
     pay all amounts required of it under this title until a final 
     determination by the Administrator is made under this 
     subsection. Such payments may not be stayed pending any 
     appeal. The Administrator shall grant any person or 
     affiliated group a refund or credit of any payments made if 
     such adjustment results in a lower payment obligation.
       (D) Adjustment.--Subject to paragraph (3), any person or 
     affiliated group that the Administrator has designated as a 
     distributor under this subsection shall be given an 
     adjustment of Tier assignment as follows:
       (i) A distributor that but for this subsection would be 
     assigned to Tier IV shall be deemed assigned to Tier V.
       (ii) A distributor that but for this subsection would be 
     assigned to Tier V shall be deemed assigned to Tier VI.
       (iii) A distributor that but for this subsection would be 
     assigned to Tier VI shall be deemed assigned to no Tier and 
     shall have no obligation to make any payment to the Fund 
     under this Act.
       (E) Exclusive to inequity adjustment.--Any person or 
     affiliated group designated by the Administrator as a 
     distributor under this subsection shall not be eligible for 
     an inequity adjustment under subsection 204(d).
       (3) Limitation on adjustments.--The aggregate total of 
     distributor adjustments under this subsection in effect in 
     any given year shall not exceed $50,000,000. If the aggregate 
     total of distributors adjustments under this subsection would 
     otherwise exceed $50,000,000, then each distributor's 
     adjustment shall be reduced pro rata until the aggregate of 
     all adjustments equals $50,000,000.
       (4) Rehearing.--A defendant participant has a right to 
     obtain a rehearing of the Administrator's determination on an 
     adjustment under this subsection under the procedures 
     prescribed in subsection (i)(10).

     SEC. 205. STEPDOWNS AND FUNDING HOLIDAYS.

       (a) Stepdowns.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Reduction.--Subject to paragraph (2), the minimum 
     aggregate annual funding obligation under section 204(h) 
     shall be reduced by 10 percent of the initial minimum 
     aggregate funding obligation at the end of the 10th, 15th, 
     20th, and 25th years after the date of enactment of this Act. 
     Except as provided under subparagraph (B), the reductions 
     under this paragraph shall be applied on an equal pro rata 
     basis to the funding obligations of all defendant 
     participants.
       (B) Calculation.--The reductions under this subsection 
     shall not apply to defendant participants in Tier I, Subtiers 
     2 and 3, and class action trusts. For defendant participants 
     whose payment obligation has been limited under section 
     204(a)(2) or who have received a financial hardship 
     adjustment under section 204(d)(2), aggregate potential 
     reductions under this subsection shall be calculated on the 
     basis of the defendant participant's tier and subtier without 
     regard to such limitation or adjustment. If the aggregate 
     potential reduction under this subsection exceeds the 
     reduction in the defendant participant's payment obligation 
     due to the limitation under section 204(a)(2) and the 
     financial hardship adjustment under section 204(d)(2), then 
     the defendant participant's payment obligation shall be 
     further reduced by the difference between the potential 
     reduction provided under this subsection and the reductions 
     that the defendant participant has already received due to 
     the application of the limitation provided in section 
     204(a)(2) and the financial hardship adjustment provided 
     under section 204(d)(2). If the reduction in the defendant 
     participant's payment obligation due to the limitation 
     provided in section 204(a)(2) and any financial hardship 
     adjustment provided under section 204(d)(2) exceeds the 
     amount of the reduction provided in this subsection, then the 
     defendant participant's payment obligation shall not be 
     further reduced under this paragraph.
       (2) Limitation.--The Administrator shall suspend, cancel, 
     reduce, or delay any reduction under paragraph (1) if at any 
     time the Administrator finds, in accordance with subsection 
     (c), that such action is necessary and appropriate to ensure 
     that the assets of the Fund and expected future payments 
     remain sufficient to satisfy the Fund's anticipated 
     obligations.
       (b) Funding Holidays.--
       (1) In general.--If the Administrator determines, at any 
     time after 10 years following the date of enactment of this 
     Act, that the assets of the Fund at the time of such 
     determination and expected future payments, taking into 
     consideration any reductions under subsection (a), are 
     sufficient to satisfy the Fund's anticipated obligations 
     without the need for all, or any portion of, that year's 
     payment otherwise required under this subtitle, the 
     Administrator shall reduce or waive all or any part of the 
     payments required from defendant participants for that year.
       (2) Annual review.--The Administrator shall undertake the 
     review required by this subsection and make the necessary 
     determination under paragraph (1) every year.
       (3) Limitations on funding holidays.--
       (A) In general.--Except as provided under subparagraph (B), 
     any reduction or waiver of the defendant participants' 
     funding obligations shall--
       (i) be made only to the extent the Administrator determines 
     that the Fund will still be able to satisfy all of its 
     anticipated obligations; and
       (ii) be applied on an equal pro rata basis to the funding 
     obligations of all defendant participants, except with 
     respect to defendant participants in Subtiers 2 and 3 of Tier 
     I and class action trusts, for that year.
       (B) Calculation.--The reductions or waivers provided under 
     this subsection shall not apply to defendant participants in 
     Tier I, Subtiers 2 and 3, and class action trusts. For 
     defendant participants whose payment obligation has been 
     limited under section 204(a)(2) or who have received a 
     financial hardship adjustment under section 204(d)(2), 
     aggregate potential reductions under this subsection shall be 
     calculated on the basis of the defendant participant's tier 
     and subtier without regard to such limitation or adjustment. 
     If the aggregate potential reductions or waivers under this 
     subsection exceed the reduction in the defendant 
     participant's payment obligation due to the limitation under 
     section 204(a)(2) and the financial hardship adjustment under 
     section 204(d)(2), then the defendant participant's payment 
     obligation shall be further reduced by the difference between 
     the potential reductions or waivers provided under this 
     subsection and the reductions that the defendant participant 
     has already received due to the application of the limitation 
     provided in section 204(a)(2) and the financial hardship 
     adjustment provided under section 204(d)(2). If the reduction 
     in the defendant participant's payment obligation due to the 
     limitation provided in section 204(a)(2) and any of the 
     financial hardship adjustment provided under section 
     204(d)(2) exceeds the amount of the reductions or waivers 
     provided in this subsection, then the defendant participant's 
     payment obligation shall not be further reduced under this 
     paragraph.
       (4) New information.--If at any time the Administrator 
     determines that a reduction or waiver under this section may 
     cause the assets of the Fund and expected future payments to 
     decrease to a level at which the Fund may not be able to 
     satisfy all of its anticipated obligations, the Administrator 
     shall revoke all or any part of such reduction or waiver to 
     the extent necessary to ensure that the Fund's obligations 
     are met. Such revocations shall be applied on an equal pro 
     rata basis to the funding obligations of all defendant 
     participants, except defendant participants in Subtiers 2 and 
     3 of Tier I and class action trusts, for that year.
       (c) Certification.--
       (1) In general.--Before suspending, canceling, reducing, or 
     delaying any reduction under subsection (a) or granting or 
     revoking a reduction or waiver under subsection (b), the 
     Administrator shall certify that the requirements of this 
     section are satisfied.
       (2) Notice and comment.--Before making a final 
     certification under this subsection, the Administrator shall 
     publish a notice in the Federal Register of a proposed 
     certification and a statement of the basis therefor and 
     provide in such notice for a public comment period of 30 
     days.
       (3) Final certification.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall publish a notice 
     of the final certification in the Federal Register after 
     consideration of all comments submitted under paragraph (2).
       (B) Written notice.--Not later than 30 days after 
     publishing any final certification under subparagraph (A), 
     the Administrator shall provide each defendant participant 
     with written notice of that defendant's funding obligation 
     for that year.

[[Page S5369]]

     SEC. 206. ACCOUNTING TREATMENT.

       Defendant participants payment obligations to the Fund 
     shall be subject to discounting under the applicable 
     accounting guidelines for generally accepted accounting 
     purposes and statutory accounting purposes for each defendant 
     participant. This section shall in no way reduce the amount 
     of monetary payments to the Fund by defendant participants as 
     required under section 202(a)(2).

                Subtitle B--Asbestos Insurers Commission

     SEC. 210. DEFINITION.

       In this subtitle, the term ``captive insurance company'' 
     means a company--
       (1) whose entire beneficial interest is owned on the date 
     of enactment of this Act, directly or indirectly, by a 
     defendant participant or by the ultimate parent or the 
     affiliated group of a defendant participant;
       (2) whose primary commercial business during the period 
     from calendar years 1940 through 1986 was to provide 
     insurance to its ultimate parent or affiliated group, or any 
     portion of the affiliated group or a combination thereof; and
       (3) that was incorporated or operating no later than 
     December 31, 2003.

     SEC. 211. ESTABLISHMENT OF ASBESTOS INSURERS COMMISSION.

       (a) Establishment.--There is established the Asbestos 
     Insurers Commission (referred to in this subtitle as the 
     ``Commission'') to carry out the duties described in section 
     212.
       (b) Membership.--
       (1) Appointment.--The Commission shall be composed of 5 
     members who shall be appointed by the President, by and with 
     the advice and consent of the Senate.
       (2) Qualifications.--
       (A) Expertise.--Members of the Commission shall have 
     sufficient expertise to fulfill their responsibilities under 
     this subtitle.
       (B) Conflict of interest.--
       (i) In general.--No member of the Commission appointed 
     under paragraph (1) may be an employee or immediate family 
     member of an employee of an insurer participant. No member of 
     the Commission shall be a shareholder of any insurer 
     participant. No member of the Commission shall be a former 
     officer or director, or a former employee or former 
     shareholder of any insurer participant who was such an 
     employee, shareholder, officer, or director at any time 
     during the 2-year period ending on the date of the 
     appointment, unless that is fully disclosed before 
     consideration in the Senate of the nomination for appointment 
     to the Commission.
       (ii) Definition.--In clause (i), the term ``shareholder'' 
     shall not include a broadly based mutual fund that includes 
     the stocks of insurer participants as a portion of its 
     overall holdings.
       (C) Federal employment.--A member of the Commission may not 
     be an officer or employee of the Federal Government, except 
     by reason of membership on the Commission.
       (3) Period of appointment.--Members shall be appointed for 
     the life of the Commission.
       (4) Vacancies.--Any vacancy in the Commission shall be 
     filled in the same manner as the original appointment.
       (5) Chairman.--The President shall select a Chairman from 
     among the members of the Commission.
       (c) Meetings.--
       (1) Initial meeting.--Not later than 30 days after the date 
     on which all members of the Commission have been appointed, 
     the Commission shall hold its first meeting.
       (2) Subsequent meetings.--The Commission shall meet at the 
     call of the Chairman, as necessary to accomplish the duties 
     under section 212.
       (3) Quorum.--No business may be conducted or hearings held 
     without the participation of a majority of the members of the 
     Commission.

     SEC. 212. DUTIES OF ASBESTOS INSURERS COMMISSION.

       (a) Determination of Insurer Payment Obligations.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Definitions.--For the purposes of this Act, the terms 
     ``insurer'' and ``insurer participant'' shall, unless stated 
     otherwise, include direct insurers and reinsurers, as well as 
     any run-off entity established, in whole or in part, to 
     review and pay asbestos claims.
       (B) Procedures for determining insurer payments.--
       (i) Amount of payments.--The Commission shall determine the 
     amount that each insurer participant shall be required to pay 
     into the Fund under the procedures described in this section. 
     The Commission shall make the determination by first 
     promulgating a rule establishing a methodology for allocation 
     of payments among insurer participants and then applying such 
     methodology to determine the individual payment for each 
     insurer participant. The methodology shall be uniform for all 
     insurer participants.
       (ii) Reserve study required.--The Commission shall conduct 
     a reserve study (the ``Reserve Study'') to determine the 
     appropriate reserve allocation of each insurer participant 
     and may request information from each insurer participant, 
     defendant participant, the Securities and Exchange Commission 
     or any State regulatory agency for the purpose of conducting 
     the Reserve Study. The Reserve Study shall calculate each 
     insurer's exposure to current and future asbestos claims in 
     the asbestos litigation environment before the date of 
     enactment of this Act. Such calculation shall be derived from 
     the following elements:

       (I) An estimation of each defendant participant's current 
     and future exposure to expense and loss costs in the asbestos 
     litigation environment before the date of enactment of this 
     Act (``Ultimate Expense and Loss'').
       (II) The application of a uniform set of assumptions 
     regarding the application of insurance and reinsurance to 
     Ultimate Expense and Loss and an analysis of each insurer 
     participant's unresolved or unexhausted insurance or 
     reinsurance coverage applicable to such Ultimate Expense and 
     Loss for each defendant participant;
       (III) A projection of each insurer's exposure to claims by 
     entities that had not yet become defendants as of the date of 
     enactment of this Act, but might reasonably have been 
     anticipated to become defendants in the future if the 
     asbestos litigation environment before the date of enactment 
     of this Act had continued. Not later than 60 days after the 
     initial meeting of the Commission, the Commission shall 
     commence a rulemaking proceeding under section 213(a) to 
     propose and adopt a methodology for conducting the Reserve 
     Study and allocating payments among insurer participants on 
     the basis of the Reserve Study. Such methodology shall be 
     consistent with this subparagraph.

       (iii) Permitted extrapolation of ultimate expense and loss 
     for peripheral defendant participants.--The Commission may 
     establish an appropriate methodology to extrapolate Ultimate 
     Expense and Loss for Tier VI defendant participants for the 
     purposes of the Reserve Study. Considerations for such 
     methodology shall include the nature of that Tier VI 
     defendant participant's asbestos liability, the number of 
     pending and historic asbestos claims against the Tier VI 
     defendant participant, and the jurisdictions in which such 
     Tier VI defendant participant had been sued for asbestos 
     liability.
       (iv) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this subparagraph 
     shall affect the initial payment requirement in section 
     212(e)(1).
       (C) Scope.--Every insurer, reinsurer, and runoff entity 
     with asbestos-related obligations in the United States shall 
     be subject to the Commission's and Administrator's authority 
     under this Act, including allocation determinations, and 
     shall be required to fulfill its payment obligation without 
     regard as to whether it is licensed in the United States. 
     Every insurer participant not licensed or domiciled in the 
     United States shall, upon the first payment to the Fund, 
     submit a written consent to the Commission's and 
     Administrator's authority under this Act, and to the 
     jurisdiction of the courts of the United States for purposes 
     of enforcing this Act, in a form determined by the 
     Administrator. Any insurer participant refusing to provide a 
     written consent shall be subject to fines and penalties as 
     provided in section 223.
       (D) Issuers of finite risk policies.--
       (i) In general.--The issuer of any policy of retrospective 
     reinsurance purchased by an insurer participant or its 
     affiliate after 1990 that provides for a risk or loss 
     transfer to insure for asbestos losses and other losses (both 
     known and unknown), including those policies commonly 
     referred to as ``finite risk'', ``aggregate stop loss'', 
     ``aggregate excess of loss'', or ``loss portfolio transfer'' 
     policies, shall be obligated to make payments required under 
     this Act directly to the Fund on behalf of the insurer 
     participant who is the beneficiary of such policy, subject to 
     the underlying retention and the limits of liability 
     applicable to such policy.
       (ii) Payments.--Payments to the Fund required under this 
     Act shall be treated as loss payments for asbestos bodily 
     injury (as if such payments were incurred as liabilities 
     imposed in the tort system) and shall not be subject to 
     exclusion under policies described under clause (i) as a 
     liability with respect to tax or assessment. Within 90 days 
     after the scheduled date to make an annual payment to the 
     Fund, the insurer participant shall, at its discretion, 
     direct the reinsurer issuing such policy to pay all or a 
     portion of the annual payment directly to the Fund up to the 
     full applicable limits of liability under the policy. The 
     reinsurer issuing such policy shall be obligated to make such 
     payments directly to the Fund and shall be subject to the 
     enforcement provisions under section 223. The insurer 
     participant shall remain obligated to make payment to the 
     Fund of that portion of the annual payment not directed to 
     the issuer of such reinsurance policy.
       (2) Amount of payments.--
       (A) Aggregate payment obligation.--The total payment 
     required of all insurer participants over the life of the 
     Fund shall be equal to $46,025,000,000, less any bankruptcy 
     trust credits under section 222(d).
       (B) Accounting standards.--In determining the payment 
     obligations of participants that are not licensed or 
     domiciled in the United States or that are runoff entities, 
     the Commission shall use accounting standards required for 
     United States licensed direct insurers.
       (C) Captive insurance companies.--No payment to the Fund 
     shall be required from a captive insurance company, unless 
     and only to the extent a captive insurance company, on the 
     date of enactment of this Act, insures the asbestos 
     liability, directly or indirectly, of (and that arises out of 
     the manufacture, sale, distribution or installation of 
     materials or products by, or other conduct of) a person or 
     persons other than and unaffiliated with its ultimate parent 
     or affiliated group or pool in which the ultimate parent 
     participates or participated, or unaffiliated with a person 
     that was its ultimate parent or

[[Page S5370]]

     a member of its affiliated group or pool at the time the 
     relevant insurance or reinsurance was issued by the captive 
     insurance company.
       (D) Several liability.--Unless otherwise provided under 
     this Act, each insurer participant's obligation to make 
     payments to the Fund is several. Unless otherwise provided 
     under this Act, there is no joint liability, and the future 
     insolvency by any insurer participant shall not affect the 
     payment required of any other insurer participant.
       (3) Payment of criteria.--
       (A) Inclusion in insurer participant category.--
       (i) In general.--Insurers that have paid, or been assessed 
     by a legal judgment or settlement, at least $1,000,000 in 
     defense and indemnity costs before the date of enactment of 
     this Act in response to claims for compensation for asbestos 
     injuries arising from a policy of liability insurance or 
     contract of liability reinsurance or retrocessional 
     reinsurance shall be insurer participants in the Fund. Other 
     insurers shall be exempt from mandatory payments.
       (ii) Inapplicability of section 202.--Since insurers may be 
     subject in certain jurisdictions to direct action suits, and 
     it is not the intent of this Act to impose upon an insurer, 
     due to its operation as an insurer, payment obligations to 
     the Fund in situations where the insurer is the subject of a 
     direct action, no insurer subject to mandatory payments under 
     this section shall also be liable for payments to the Fund as 
     a defendant participant under section 202.
       (B) Insurer participant allocation methodology.--
       (i) In general.--The Commission shall establish the payment 
     obligations of individual insurer participants to reflect, on 
     an equitable basis, the relative tort system liability of the 
     participating insurers in the absence of this Act, 
     considering and weighting, as appropriate (but exclusive of 
     workers' compensation), such factors as--

       (I) historic premium for lines of insurance associated with 
     asbestos exposure over relevant periods of time;
       (II) recent loss experience for asbestos liability;
       (III) amounts reserved for asbestos liability;
       (IV) the likely cost to each insurer participant of its 
     future liabilities under applicable insurance policies; and
       (V) any other factor the Commission may determine is 
     relevant and appropriate.

       (ii) Determination of reserves.--The Commission may 
     establish procedures and standards for determination of the 
     asbestos reserves of insurer participants. The reserves of a 
     United States licensed reinsurer that is wholly owned by, or 
     under common control of, a United States licensed direct 
     insurer shall be included as part of the direct insurer's 
     reserves when the reinsurer's financial results are included 
     as part of the direct insurer's United States operations, as 
     reflected in footnote 33 of its filings with the National 
     Association of Insurance Commissioners or in published 
     financial statements prepared in accordance with generally 
     accepted accounting principles.
       (C) Payment schedule.--The aggregate annual amount of 
     payments by insurer participants over the life of the Fund 
     shall be as follows:
       (i) For years 1 and 2, $2,700,000,000 annually.
       (ii) For years 3 through 5, $5,075,000,000 annually.
       (iii) For years 6 through 27, $1,147,000,000 annually.
       (iv) For year 28, $166,000,000.
       (D) Certain runoff entities.--A runoff entity shall include 
     any direct insurer or reinsurer whose asbestos liability 
     reserves have been transferred, directly or indirectly, to 
     the runoff entity and on whose behalf the runoff entity 
     handles or adjusts and, where appropriate, pays asbestos 
     claims.
       (E) Financial hardship and exceptional circumstance 
     adjustments.--
       (i) In general.--Under the procedures established in 
     subsection (b), an insurer participant may seek adjustment of 
     the amount of its payments based on exceptional circumstances 
     or severe financial hardship.
       (ii) Financial adjustments.--An insurer participant may 
     qualify for an adjustment based on severe financial hardship 
     by demonstrating that payment of the amounts required by the 
     Commission's methodology would jeopardize the solvency of 
     such participant.
       (iii) Exceptional circumstance adjustment.--An insurer 
     participant may qualify for an adjustment based on 
     exceptional circumstances by demonstrating--

       (I) that the amount of its payments under the Commission's 
     allocation methodology is exceptionally inequitable when 
     measured against the amount of the likely cost to the 
     participant of its future liability in the tort system in the 
     absence of the Fund;
       (II) an offset credit as described in subparagraphs (A) and 
     (C) of subsection (b)(4); or
       (III) other exceptional circumstances.

     The Commission may determine whether to grant an adjustment 
     and the size of any such adjustment, but except as provided 
     under paragraph (1)(B), subsection (f)(3), and section 
     405(f), any such adjustment shall not affect the aggregate 
     payment obligations of insurer participants specified in 
     paragraph (2)(A) and subparagraph (C) of this paragraph.
       (iv) Time period of adjustment.--Except for adjustments for 
     offset credits, adjustments granted under this subsection 
     shall have a term not to exceed 3 years. An insurer 
     participant may renew its adjustment by demonstrating to the 
     Administrator that it remains justified.
       (F) Funding holidays.--
       (i) In general.--If the Administrator determines, at any 
     time after 10 years following the date of enactment of this 
     Act, that the assets of the Fund at the time of such 
     determination and expected future payments are sufficient to 
     satisfy the Fund's anticipated obligations without the need 
     for all, or any portion of, that year's payment otherwise 
     required under this subtitle, the Administrator shall reduce 
     or waive all or any part of the payments required from 
     insurer participants for that year.
       (ii) Annual review.--The Administrator shall undertake the 
     review required by this subsection and make the necessary 
     determination under clause (i) every year.
       (iii) Limitations of funding holidays.--Any reduction or 
     waiver of the insurer participants' funding obligations 
     shall--

       (I) be made only to the extent the Administrator determines 
     that the Fund will still be able to satisfy all of its 
     anticipated obligations; and
       (II) be applied on an equal pro rata basis to the funding 
     obligations of all insurer participants for that year.

       (iv) New information.--If at any time the Administrator 
     determines that a reduction or waiver under this section may 
     cause the assets of the Fund and expected future payments to 
     decrease to a level at which the Fund may not be able to 
     satisfy all of its anticipated obligations, the Administrator 
     shall revoke all or any part of such reduction or waiver to 
     the extent necessary to ensure that the Fund's obligations 
     are met. Such revocations shall be applied on an equal pro 
     rata basis to the funding obligations of all insurer 
     participants for that year.
       (b) Procedure for Notifying Insurer Participants of 
     Individual Payment Obligations.--
       (1) Notice to participants.--Not later than 30 days after 
     promulgation of the final rule establishing an allocation 
     methodology under subsection (a)(1), the Commission shall--
       (A) directly notify all reasonably identifiable insurer 
     participants of the requirement to submit information 
     necessary to calculate the amount of any required payment to 
     the Fund under the allocation methodology; and
       (B) publish in the Federal Register a notice--
       (i) requiring any person who may be an insurer participant 
     (as determined by criteria outlined in the notice) to submit 
     such information; and
       (ii) that includes a list of all insurer participants 
     notified by the Commission under subparagraph (A), and 
     provides for 30 days for the submission of comments or 
     information regarding the completeness and accuracy of the 
     list of identified insurer participants.
       (2) Response required by individual insurer participants.--
       (A) In general.--Any person who receives notice under 
     paragraph (1)(A), and any other person meeting the criteria 
     specified in the notice published under paragraph (1)(B), 
     shall respond by providing the Commission with all the 
     information requested in the notice under a schedule or by a 
     date established by the Commission.
       (B) Certification.--The response submitted under 
     subparagraph (A) shall be signed by a responsible corporate 
     officer, general partner, proprietor, or individual of 
     similar authority, who shall certify under penalty of law the 
     completeness and accuracy of the information submitted.
       (3) Notice to insurer participants of initial payment 
     determination.--
       (A) In general.--
       (i) Notice to insurers.--Not later than 120 days after 
     receipt of the information required by paragraph (2), the 
     Commission shall send each insurer participant a notice of 
     initial determination requiring payments to the Fund, which 
     shall be based on the information received from the 
     participant in response to the Commission's request for 
     information. An insurer participant's payments shall be 
     payable over the schedule established in subsection 
     (a)(3)(C), in annual amounts proportionate to the aggregate 
     annual amount of payments for all insurer participants for 
     the applicable year.
       (ii) Public notice.--Not later than 7 days after sending 
     the notification of initial determination to insurer 
     participants, the Commission shall publish in the Federal 
     Register a notice listing the insurer participants that have 
     been sent such notification, and the initial determination on 
     the payment obligation of each identified participant.
       (B) No response; incomplete response.--If no response is 
     received from an insurer participant, or if the response is 
     incomplete, the initial determination requiring a payment 
     from the insurer participant shall be based on the best 
     information available to the Commission.
       (4) Commission review, revision, and finalization of 
     initial payment determinations.--
       (A) Comments from insurer participants.--Not later than 30 
     days after receiving a notice of initial determination from 
     the Commission, an insurer participant may provide the 
     Commission with additional information to support adjustments 
     to the required payments to reflect severe financial hardship 
     or exceptional circumstances, including the provision of an 
     offset credit for

[[Page S5371]]

     an insurer participant for the amount of any asbestos-related 
     payments it made or was legally obligated to make, including 
     payments released from an escrow, as the result of a 
     bankruptcy judicially confirmed after May 22, 2003, but 
     before the date of enactment of this Act.
       (B) Additional participants.--If, before the final 
     determination of the Commission, the Commission receives 
     information that an additional person may qualify as an 
     insurer participant, the Commission shall require such person 
     to submit information necessary to determine whether payments 
     from that person should be required, in accordance with the 
     requirements of this subsection.
       (C) Revision procedures.--The Commission shall adopt 
     procedures for revising initial payments based on information 
     received under subparagraphs (A) and (B), including a 
     provision requiring an offset credit for an insurer 
     participant for the amount of any asbestos-related payments 
     it made or was legally obligated to make, including payments 
     released from an escrow, as the result of a bankruptcy 
     confirmed after May 22, 2003, but before the date of 
     enactment of this Act.
       (5) Examinations and subpoenas.--
       (A) Examinations.--The Commission may conduct examinations 
     of the books and records of insurer participants to determine 
     the completeness and accuracy of information submitted, or 
     required to be submitted, to the Commission for purposes of 
     determining participant payments.
       (B) Subpoenas.--The Commission may request the Attorney 
     General to subpoena persons to compel testimony, records, and 
     other information relevant to its responsibilities under this 
     section. The Attorney General may enforce such subpoena in 
     appropriate proceedings in the United States district court 
     for the district in which the person to whom the subpoena was 
     addressed resides, was served, or transacts business.
       (6) Escrow payments.--Without regard to an insurer 
     participant's payment obligation under this section, any 
     escrow or similar account established before the date of 
     enactment of this Act by an insurer participant in connection 
     with an asbestos trust fund that has not been judicially 
     confirmed by final order by the date of enactment of this Act 
     shall be the property of the insurer participant and returned 
     to that insurer participant.
       (7) Notice to insurer participants of final payment 
     determinations.--Not later than 60 days after the notice of 
     initial determination is sent to the insurer participants, 
     the Commission shall send each insurer participant a notice 
     of final determination.
       (c) Insurer Participants Voluntary Allocation Agreement.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 30 days after the 
     Commission proposes its rule establishing an allocation 
     methodology under subsection (a)(1), direct insurer 
     participants licensed or domiciled in the United States, 
     other direct insurer participants, reinsurer participants 
     licensed or domiciled in the United States, or other 
     reinsurer participants, may submit an allocation agreement, 
     approved by all of the participants in the applicable group, 
     to the Commission.
       (2) Allocation agreement.--To the extent the participants 
     in any such applicable group voluntarily agree upon an 
     allocation arrangement, any such allocation agreement shall 
     only govern the allocation of payments within that group and 
     shall not determine the aggregate amount due from that group.
       (3) Certification.--The Commission shall determine whether 
     an allocation agreement submitted under subparagraph (A) 
     meets the requirements of this subtitle and, if so, shall 
     certify the agreement as establishing the allocation 
     methodology governing the individual payment obligations of 
     the participants who are parties to the agreement. The 
     authority of the Commission under this subtitle shall, with 
     respect to participants who are parties to a certified 
     allocation agreement, terminate on the day after the 
     Commission certifies such agreement. Under subsection (f), 
     the Administrator shall assume responsibility, if necessary, 
     for calculating the individual payment obligations of 
     participants who are parties to the certified agreement.
       (d) Commission Report.--
       (1) Recipients.--Until the work of the Commission has been 
     completed and the Commission terminated, the Commission shall 
     submit an annual report, containing the information described 
     under paragraph (2), to--
       (A) the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate;
       (B) the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of 
     Representatives; and
       (C) the Administrator.
       (2) Contents.--The report under paragraph (1) shall state 
     the amount that each insurer participant is required to pay 
     to the Fund, including the payment schedule for such 
     payments.
       (e) Interim Payments.--
       (1) Amount of interim payment.--Within 90 days after the 
     date of enactment of this Act, insurer participants shall 
     make an aggregate payment to the Fund not to exceed 50 
     percent of the aggregate funding obligation specified under 
     subsection (a)(3)(C) for year 1.
       (2) Reserve information.--Within 30 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, each insurer participant shall submit 
     to the Administrator a certified statement of its net held 
     reserves for asbestos liabilities as of December 31, 2004.
       (3) Allocation of interim payment.--The Administrator shall 
     allocate the interim payment among the individual insurer 
     participants on an equitable basis using the net held 
     asbestos reserve information provided by insurer participants 
     under subsection (a)(3)(B). Within 60 days after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall publish in the 
     Federal Register the name of each insurer participant, and 
     the amount of the insurer participant's allocated share of 
     the interim payment. The use of net held asbestos reserves as 
     the basis to determine an interim allocation shall not be 
     binding on the Administrator in the determination of an 
     appropriate final allocation methodology under this section. 
     All payments required under this paragraph shall be credited 
     against the participant's ultimate payment obligation to the 
     Fund established by the Commission. If an interim payment 
     exceeds the ultimate payment, the Fund shall pay interest on 
     the amount of the overpayment at a rate determined by the 
     Administrator. If the ultimate payment exceeds the interim 
     payment, the participant shall pay interest on the amount of 
     the underpayment at the same rate. Any participant may seek 
     an exemption from or reduction in any payment required under 
     this subsection under the financial hardship and exceptional 
     circumstance standards established under subsection 
     (a)(3)(E).
       (4) Appeal of interim payment decisions.--A decision by the 
     Administrator to establish an interim payment obligation 
     shall be considered final agency action and reviewable under 
     section 303, except that the reviewing court may not stay an 
     interim payment during the pendency of the appeal.
       (f) Transfer of Authority From the Commission to the 
     Administrator.--
       (1) In general.--Upon termination of the Commission under 
     section 215, the Administrator shall assume all the 
     responsibilities and authority of the Commission, except that 
     the Administrator shall not have the power to modify the 
     allocation methodology established by the Commission or by 
     certified agreement or to promulgate a rule establishing any 
     such methodology.
       (2) Financial hardship and exceptional circumstance 
     adjustments.--Upon termination of the Commission under 
     section 215, the Administrator shall have the authority, upon 
     application by any insurer participant, to make adjustments 
     to annual payments upon the same grounds as provided in 
     subsection (a)(3)(D). Adjustments granted under this 
     subsection shall have a term not to exceed 3 years. An 
     insurer participant may renew its adjustment by demonstrating 
     that it remains justified. Upon the grant of any adjustment, 
     the Administrator shall increase the payments, consistent 
     with subsection (a)(1)(B), required of all other insurer 
     participants so that there is no reduction in the aggregate 
     payment required of all insurer participants for the 
     applicable years. The increase in an insurer participant's 
     required payment shall be in proportion to such participant's 
     share of the aggregate payment obligation of all insurer 
     participants.
       (3) Credits for shortfall assessments.--If insurer 
     participants are required during the first 5 years of the 
     life of the Fund to make up any shortfall in required insurer 
     payments under subsection (a)(1)(B), then, beginning in year 
     6, the Administrator shall grant each insurer participant a 
     credit against its annual required payments during the 
     applicable years that in the aggregate equal the amount of 
     shortfall assessments paid by such insurer participant during 
     the first 5 years of the life of the Fund. The credit shall 
     be prorated over the same number of years as the number of 
     years during which the insurer participant paid a shortfall 
     assessment. Insurer participants which did not pay all 
     required payments to the Fund during the first 5 years of the 
     life of the Fund shall not be eligible for a credit. The 
     Administrator shall not grant a credit for shortfall 
     assessments imposed under section 405(f).
       (4) Financial security requirements.--Whenever an insurer 
     participant's A.M. Best's claims payment rating or Standard 
     and Poor's financial strength rating falls below A-, and 
     until such time as either the insurer participant's A.M. 
     Best's Rating or Standard and Poor's rating is equal to or 
     greater than A-, the Administrator shall have the authority 
     to require that the participating insurer either--
       (A) pay the present value of its remaining Fund payments at 
     a discount rate determined by the Administrator; or
       (B) provide an evergreen letter of credit or financial 
     guarantee for future payments issued by an institution with 
     an A.M. Best's claims payment rating or Standard & Poor's 
     financial strength rating of at least A+.
       (g) Accounting Treatment.--Insurer participants' payment 
     obligations to the Fund shall be subject to discounting under 
     the applicable accounting guidelines for generally accepted 
     accounting purposes and statutory accounting purposes for 
     each insurer participant. This subsection shall in no way 
     reduce the amount of monetary payments to the Fund by insurer 
     participants as required under subsection (a).
       (h) Judicial Review.--The Commission's rule establishing an 
     allocation methodology, its final determinations of payment 
     obligations and other final action shall be judicially 
     reviewable as provided in title III.

     SEC. 213. POWERS OF ASBESTOS INSURERS COMMISSION.

       (a) Rulemaking.--The Commission shall promulgate such rules 
     and regulations as necessary to implement its authority under

[[Page S5372]]

     this Act, including regulations governing an allocation 
     methodology. Such rules and regulations shall be promulgated 
     after providing interested parties with the opportunity for 
     notice and comment.
       (b) Hearings.--The Commission may hold such hearings, sit 
     and act at such times and places, take such testimony, and 
     receive such evidence as the Commission considers advisable 
     to carry out this Act. The Commission shall also hold a 
     hearing on any proposed regulation establishing an allocation 
     methodology, before the Commission's adoption of a final 
     regulation.
       (c) Information From Federal and State Agencies.--The 
     Commission may secure directly from any Federal or State 
     department or agency such information as the Commission 
     considers necessary to carry out this Act. Upon request of 
     the Chairman of the Commission, the head of such department 
     or agency shall furnish such information to the Commission.
       (d) Postal Services.--The Commission may use the United 
     States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions 
     as other departments and agencies of the Federal Government.
       (e) Gifts.--The Commission may not accept, use, or dispose 
     of gifts or donations of services or property.
       (f) Expert Advice.--In carrying out its responsibilities, 
     the Commission may enter into such contracts and agreements 
     as the Commission determines necessary to obtain expert 
     advice and analysis.

     SEC. 214. PERSONNEL MATTERS.

       (a) Compensation of Members.--Each member of the Commission 
     shall be compensated at a rate equal to the daily equivalent 
     of the annual rate of basic pay prescribed for level IV of 
     the Executive Schedule under section 5315 of title 5, United 
     States Code, for each day (including travel time) during 
     which such member is engaged in the performance of the duties 
     of the Commission.
       (b) Travel Expenses.--The members of the Commission shall 
     be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of 
     subsistence, at rates authorized for employees of agencies 
     under subchapter I of chapter 57 of title 5, United States 
     Code, while away from their homes or regular places of 
     business in the performance of services for the Commission.
       (c) Staff.--
       (1) In general.--The Chairman of the Commission may, 
     without regard to the civil service laws and regulations, 
     appoint and terminate an executive director and such other 
     additional personnel as may be necessary to enable the 
     Commission to perform its duties. The employment of an 
     executive director shall be subject to confirmation by the 
     Commission.
       (2) Compensation.--The Chairman of the Commission may fix 
     the compensation of the executive director and other 
     personnel without regard to chapter 51 and subchapter III of 
     chapter 53 of title 5, United States Code, relating to 
     classification of positions and General Schedule pay rates, 
     except that the rate of pay for the executive director and 
     other personnel may not exceed the rate payable for level V 
     of the Executive Schedule under section 5316 of such title.
       (d) Detail of Government Employees.--Any Federal Government 
     employee may be detailed to the Commission without 
     reimbursement, and such detail shall be without interruption 
     or loss of civil service status or privilege.
       (e) Procurement of Temporary and Intermittent Services.--
     The Chairman of the Commission may procure temporary and 
     intermittent services under section 3109(b) of title 5, 
     United States Code, at rates for individuals which do not 
     exceed the daily equivalent of the annual rate of basic pay 
     prescribed for level V of the Executive Schedule under 
     section 5316 of such title.

     SEC. 215. TERMINATION OF ASBESTOS INSURERS COMMISSION.

       The Commission shall terminate 90 days after the last date 
     on which the Commission makes a final determination of 
     contribution under section 212(b) or 90 days after the last 
     appeal of any final action by the Commission is exhausted, 
     whichever occurs later.

     SEC. 216. EXPENSES AND COSTS OF COMMISSION.

       All expenses of the Commission shall be paid from the Fund.

           Subtitle C--Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution Fund

     SEC. 221. ESTABLISHMENT OF ASBESTOS INJURY CLAIMS RESOLUTION 
                   FUND.

       (a) Establishment.--There is established in the Office of 
     Asbestos Disease Compensation the Asbestos Injury Claims 
     Resolution Fund, which shall be available to pay--
       (1) claims for awards for an eligible disease or condition 
     determined under title I;
       (2) claims for reimbursement for medical monitoring 
     determined under title I;
       (3) principal and interest on borrowings under subsection 
     (b);
       (4) the remaining obligations to the asbestos trust of a 
     debtor and the class action trust under section 405(g)(8); 
     and
       (5) administrative expenses to carry out the provisions of 
     this Act.
       (b) Borrowing Authority.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator is authorized to borrow 
     from time to time amounts as set forth in this subsection, 
     for purposes of enhancing liquidity available to the Fund for 
     carrying out the obligations of the Fund under this Act. The 
     Administrator may authorize borrowing in such form, over such 
     term, with such necessary disclosure to its lenders as will 
     most efficiently enhance the Fund's liquidity.
       (2) Federal financing bank.--In addition to the general 
     authority in paragraph (1), the Administrator may borrow from 
     the Federal Financing Bank in accordance with section 6 of 
     the Federal Financing Bank Act of 1973 (12 U.S.C. 2285), as 
     needed for performance of the Administrator's duties under 
     this Act for the first 5 years.
       (3) Borrowing capacity.--The maximum amount that may be 
     borrowed under this subsection at any given time is the 
     amount that, taking into account all payment obligations 
     related to all previous amounts borrowed in accordance with 
     this subsection and all committed obligations of the Fund at 
     the time of borrowing, can be repaid in full (with interest) 
     in a timely fashion from--
       (A) the available assets of the Fund as of the time of 
     borrowing; and
       (B) all amounts expected to be paid by participants during 
     the subsequent 10 years.
       (4) Repayment obligations.--Repayment of monies borrowed by 
     the Administrator under this subsection shall be repaid in 
     full by the Fund contributors and is limited solely to 
     amounts available, present or future, in the Fund.
       (c) Lockbox for Severe Asbestos-Related Injury Claimants.--
       (1) In general.--Within the Fund, the Administrator shall 
     establish the following accounts:
       (A) A Mesothelioma Account, which shall be used solely to 
     make payments to claimants eligible for an award under the 
     criteria of Level IX.
       (B) A Lung Cancer Account, which shall be used solely to 
     make payments to claimants eligible for an award under the 
     criteria of Level VIII.
       (C) A Severe Asbestosis Account, which shall be used solely 
     to make payments to claimants eligible for an award under the 
     criteria of Level V.
       (D) A Moderate Asbestosis Account, which shall be used 
     solely to make payments to claimants eligible for an award 
     under the criteria of Level IV.
       (2) Allocation.--The Administrator shall allocate to each 
     of the 4 accounts established under paragraph (1) a portion 
     of payments made to the Fund adequate to compensate all 
     anticipated claimants for each account. Within 60 days after 
     the date of enactment of this Act, and periodically during 
     the life of the Fund, the Administrator shall determine an 
     appropriate amount to allocate to each account after 
     consulting appropriate epidemiological and statistical 
     studies.
       (d) Audit Authority.--
       (1) In general.--For the purpose of ascertaining the 
     correctness of any information provided or payments made to 
     the Fund, or determining whether a person who has not made a 
     payment to the Fund was required to do so, or determining the 
     liability of any person for a payment to the Fund, or 
     collecting any such liability, or inquiring into any offense 
     connected with the administration or enforcement of this 
     title, the Administrator is authorized--
       (A) to examine any books, papers, records, or other data 
     which may be relevant or material to such inquiry;
       (B) to summon the person liable for a payment under this 
     title, or officer or employee of such person, or any person 
     having possession, custody, or care of books of account 
     containing entries relating to the business of the person 
     liable or any other person the Administrator may deem proper, 
     to appear before the Administrator at a time and place named 
     in the summons and to produce such books, papers, records, or 
     other data, and to give such testimony, under oath, as may be 
     relevant or material to such inquiry; and
       (C) to take such testimony of the person concerned, under 
     oath, as may be relevant or material to such inquiry.
       (2) False, fraudulent, or fictitious statements or 
     practices.--If the Administrator determines that materially 
     false, fraudulent, or fictitious statements or practices have 
     been submitted or engaged in by persons submitting 
     information to the Administrator or to the Asbestos Insurers 
     Commission or any other person who provides evidence in 
     support of such submissions for purposes of determining 
     payment obligations under this Act, the Administrator may 
     impose a civil penalty not to exceed $10,000 on any person 
     found to have submitted or engaged in a materially false, 
     fraudulent, or fictitious statement or practice under this 
     Act. The Administrator shall promulgate appropriate 
     regulations to implement this paragraph.
       (e) Identity of Certain Defendant Participants; 
     Transparency.--
       (1) Submission of information.--Not later than 60 days 
     after the date of enactment of this Act, any person who, 
     acting in good faith, has knowledge that such person or such 
     person's affiliated group has prior asbestos expenditures of 
     $1,000,000 or greater, shall submit to the Administrator--
       (A) either the name of such person, or such person's 
     ultimate parent; and
       (B) the likely tier to which such person or affiliated 
     group may be assigned under this Act.
       (2) Publication.--Not later than 20 days after the end of 
     the 60-day period referred to in paragraph (1), the 
     Administrator or Interim Administrator, if the Administrator 
     is not yet appointed, shall publish in the Federal Register a 
     list of submissions required by this subsection, including 
     the name of such persons or ultimate parents and the likely 
     tier to which such persons or affiliated

[[Page S5373]]

     groups may be assigned. After publication of such list, any 
     person who, acting in good faith, has knowledge that any 
     other person has prior asbestos expenditures of $1,000,000 or 
     greater may submit to the Administrator or Interim 
     Administrator information on the identity of that person and 
     the person's prior asbestos expenditures.
       (f) No Private Right of Action.--Except as provided in 
     sections 203(b)(2)(D)(ii) and 204(f)(3), there shall be no 
     private right of action under any Federal or State law 
     against any participant based on a claim of compliance or 
     noncompliance with this Act or the involvement of any 
     participant in the enactment of this Act.

     SEC. 222. MANAGEMENT OF THE FUND.

       (a) In General.--Amounts in the Fund shall be held for the 
     exclusive purpose of providing benefits to asbestos claimants 
     and their beneficiaries and to otherwise defray the 
     reasonable expenses of administering the Fund.
       (b) Investments.--
       (1) In general.--Amounts in the Fund shall be administered 
     and invested with the care, skill, prudence, and diligence, 
     under the circumstances prevailing at the time of such 
     investment, that a prudent person acting in a like capacity 
     and manner would use.
       (2) Strategy.--The Administrator shall invest amounts in 
     the Fund in a manner that enables the Fund to make current 
     and future distributions to or for the benefit of asbestos 
     claimants. In pursuing an investment strategy under this 
     subparagraph, the Administrator shall consider, to the extent 
     relevant to an investment decision or action--
       (A) the size of the Fund;
       (B) the nature and estimated duration of the Fund;
       (C) the liquidity and distribution requirements of the 
     Fund;
       (D) general economic conditions at the time of the 
     investment;
       (E) the possible effect of inflation or deflation on Fund 
     assets;
       (F) the role that each investment or course of action plays 
     with respect to the overall assets of the Fund;
       (G) the expected amount to be earned (including both income 
     and appreciation of capital) through investment of amounts in 
     the Fund; and
       (H) the needs of asbestos claimants for current and future 
     distributions authorized under this Act.
       (c) Bankruptcy Trust Guarantee.--
       (1) In general.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     this Act, the Administrator shall have the authority to 
     impose a pro rata surcharge on all participants under this 
     subsection to ensure the liquidity of the Fund, if--
       (A) the declared assets from 1 or more bankruptcy trusts 
     established under a plan of reorganization confirmed and 
     substantially consummated on or before July 31, 2004, are not 
     available to the Fund because a final judgment that has been 
     entered by a court and is no longer subject to any appeal or 
     review has enjoined the transfer of assets required under 
     section 524(j)(2) of title 11, United States Code (as amended 
     by section 402(f) of this Act); and
       (B) borrowing is insufficient to assure the Fund's ability 
     to meet its obligations under this Act such that the required 
     borrowed amount is likely to increase the risk of termination 
     of this Act under section 405 based on reasonable claims 
     projections.
       (2) Allocation.--Any surcharge imposed under this 
     subsection shall be imposed over a period of 5 years on a pro 
     rata basis upon all participants, in accordance with the 
     relative aggregate funding obligations under sections 
     202(a)(2) and 212(a)(2)(A).
       (3) Certification.--
       (A) In general.--Before imposing a surcharge under this 
     subsection, the Administrator shall publish a notice in the 
     Federal Register and provide in such notice for a public 
     comment period of 30 days.
       (B) Contents of notice.--The notice required under 
     subparagraph (A) shall include--
       (i) information explaining the circumstances that make a 
     surcharge necessary and a certification that the requirements 
     under paragraph (1) are met;
       (ii) the amount of the declared assets from any trust 
     established under a plan of reorganization confirmed and 
     substantially consummated on or before July 31, 2004, that 
     was not made, or is no longer, available to the Fund;
       (iii) the total aggregate amount of the necessary 
     surcharge; and
       (iv) the surcharge amount for each tier and subtier of 
     defendant participants and for each insurer participant.
       (C) Final notice.--The Administrator shall publish a final 
     notice in the Federal Register and provide each participant 
     with written notice of that participant's schedule of 
     payments under this subsection. In no event shall any 
     required surcharge under this subsection be due before 60 
     days after the Administrator publishes the final notice in 
     the Federal Register and provides each participant with 
     written notice of its schedule of payments.
       (4) Maximum amount.--In no event shall the total aggregate 
     surcharge imposed by the Administrator exceed the lesser of--
       (A) the total aggregate amount of the declared assets of 
     the trusts established under a plan of reorganization 
     confirmed and substantially consummated prior to July 31, 
     2004, that are no longer available to the Fund; or
       (B) $4,000,000,000.
       (5) Declared assets.--
       (A) In general.--In this subsection, the term ``declared 
     assets'' means--
       (i) the amount of assets transferred by any trust 
     established under a plan of reorganization confirmed and 
     substantially consummated on or before July 31, 2004, to the 
     Fund that is required to be returned to that trust under the 
     final judgment described in paragraph (1)(A); or
       (ii) if no assets were transferred by the trust to the 
     Fund, the amount of assets the Administrator determines would 
     have been available for transfer to the Fund from that trust 
     under section 402(f).
       (B) Determination.--In making a determination under 
     subparagraph (A)(ii), the Administrator may rely on any 
     information reasonably available, and may request, and use 
     subpoena authority of the Administrator if necessary to 
     obtain, relevant information from any such trust or its 
     trustees.
       (d) Bankruptcy Trust Credits.--
       (1) In general.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     this Act, but subject to paragraph (2) of this subsection, 
     the Administrator shall provide a credit toward the aggregate 
     payment obligations under sections 202(a)(2) and 212(a)(2)(A) 
     for assets received by the Fund from any bankruptcy trust 
     established under a plan of reorganization confirmed and 
     substantially consummated after July 31, 2004.
       (2) Allocation of credits.--The Administrator shall 
     allocate, for each such bankruptcy trust, the credits for 
     such assets between the defendant and insurer aggregate 
     payment obligations as follows:
       (A) Defendant participants.--The aggregate amount that all 
     persons other than insurers contributing to the bankruptcy 
     trust would have been required to pay as Tier I defendants 
     under section 203(b) if the plan of reorganization under 
     which the bankruptcy trust was established had not been 
     confirmed and substantially consummated and the proceeding 
     under chapter 11 of title 11, United States Code, that 
     resulted in the establishment of the bankruptcy trust had 
     remained pending as of the date of enactment of this Act.
       (B) Insurer participants.--The aggregate amount of all 
     credits to which insurers are entitled to under section 
     202(c)(4)(A) of the Act.

     SEC. 223. ENFORCEMENT OF PAYMENT OBLIGATIONS.

       (a) Default.--If any participant fails to make any payment 
     in the amount of and according to the schedule under this Act 
     or as prescribed by the Administrator, after demand and a 30-
     day opportunity to cure the default, there shall be a lien in 
     favor of the United States for the amount of the delinquent 
     payment (including interest) upon all property and rights to 
     property, whether real or personal, belonging to such 
     participant.
       (b) Bankruptcy.--In the case of a bankruptcy or insolvency 
     proceeding, the lien imposed under subsection (a) shall be 
     treated in the same manner as a lien for taxes due and owing 
     to the United States for purposes of the provisions of title 
     11, United States Code, or section 3713(a) of title 31, 
     United States Code. The United States Bankruptcy Court shall 
     have jurisdiction over any issue or controversy regarding 
     lien priority and lien perfection arising in a bankruptcy 
     case due to a lien imposed under subsection (a).
       (c) Civil Action.--
       (1) In general.--In any case in which there has been a 
     refusal or failure to pay any liability imposed under this 
     Act, including a refusal or failure to provide the 
     information required under section 204 needed to determine 
     liability, the Administrator may bring a civil action in any 
     appropriate United States District Court, or any other 
     appropriate lawsuit or proceeding outside of the United 
     States--
       (A) to enforce the liability and any lien of the United 
     States imposed under this section;
       (B) to subject any property of the participant, including 
     any property in which the participant has any right, title, 
     or interest to the payment of such liability;
       (C) for temporary, preliminary, or permanent relief; or
       (D) to enforce a subpoena issued under section 204(i)(9) to 
     compel the production of documents necessary to determine 
     liability.
       (2) Additional penalties.--In any action under paragraph 
     (1) in which the refusal or failure to pay was willful, the 
     Administrator may seek recovery--
       (A) of punitive damages;
       (B) of the costs of any civil action under this subsection, 
     including reasonable fees incurred for collection, expert 
     witnesses, and attorney's fees; and
       (C) in addition to any other penalty, of a fine equal to 
     the total amount of the liability that has not been 
     collected.
       (d) Enforcement Authority as to Insurer Participants.--
       (1) In general.--In addition to or in lieu of the 
     enforcement remedies described in subsection (c), the 
     Administrator may seek to recover amounts in satisfaction of 
     a payment not timely paid by an insurer participant under the 
     procedures under this subsection.
       (2) Subrogation.--To the extent required to establish 
     personal jurisdiction over nonpaying insurer participants, 
     the Administrator shall be deemed to be subrogated to the 
     contractual rights of participants to seek recovery from 
     nonpaying insuring participants that are domiciled outside 
     the United States under the policies of liability

[[Page S5374]]

     insurance or contracts of liability reinsurance or 
     retrocessional reinsurance applicable to asbestos claims, and 
     the Administrator may bring an action or an arbitration 
     against the nonpaying insurer participants under the 
     provisions of such policies and contracts, provided that--
       (A) any amounts collected under this subsection shall not 
     increase the amount of deemed erosion allocated to any policy 
     or contract under section 404, or otherwise reduce coverage 
     available to a participant; and
       (B) subrogation under this subsection shall have no effect 
     on the validity of the insurance policies or reinsurance, and 
     any contrary State law is expressly preempted.
       (3) Recoverability of contribution.--For purposes of this 
     subsection--
       (A) all contributions to the Fund required of a participant 
     shall be deemed to be sums legally required to be paid for 
     bodily injury resulting from exposure to asbestos;
       (B) all contributions to the Fund required of any 
     participant shall be deemed to be a single loss arising from 
     a single occurrence under each contract to which the 
     Administrator is subrogated; and
       (C) with respect to reinsurance contracts, all 
     contributions to the Fund required of a participant shall be 
     deemed to be payments to a single claimant for a single loss.
       (4) No credit or offset.--In any action brought under this 
     subsection, the nonpaying insurer or reinsurer shall be 
     entitled to no credit or offset for amounts collectible or 
     potentially collectible from any participant nor shall such 
     defaulting participant have any right to collect any sums 
     payable under this section from any participant.
       (5) Cooperation.--Insureds and cedents shall cooperate with 
     the Administrator's reasonable requests for assistance in any 
     such proceeding. The positions taken or statements made by 
     the Administrator in any such proceeding shall not be binding 
     on or attributed to the insureds or cedents in any other 
     proceeding. The outcome of such a proceeding shall not have a 
     preclusive effect on the insureds or cedents in any other 
     proceeding and shall not be admissible against any subrogee 
     under this section. The Administrator shall have the 
     authority to settle or compromise any claims against a 
     nonpaying insurer participant under this subsection.
       (e) Bar on United States Business.--If any direct insurer 
     or reinsurer refuses to pay any contribution required by this 
     Act, then, in addition to any other penalties imposed by this 
     Act, the Administrator shall issue an order barring such 
     entity and its affiliates from insuring risks located within 
     the United States or otherwise doing business within the 
     United States unless and until it complies. If any direct 
     insurer or reinsurer refuses to furnish any information 
     requested by the Administrator, the Administrator may issue 
     an order barring such entity and its affiliates from insuring 
     risks located within the United States or otherwise doing 
     business within the United States unless and until it 
     complies. Insurer participants or their affiliates seeking to 
     obtain a license from any State to write any type of 
     insurance shall be barred from obtaining any such license 
     until payment of all contributions required as of the date of 
     license application.
       (f) Credit for Reinsurance.--If the Administrator 
     determines that an insurer participant that is a reinsurer is 
     in default in paying any required contribution or otherwise 
     not in compliance with this Act, the Administrator may issue 
     an order barring any direct insurer participant from 
     receiving credit for reinsurance purchased from the 
     defaulting reinsurer after the date of the Administrator's 
     determination of default. Any State law governing credit for 
     reinsurance to the contrary is preempted.
       (g) Defense Limitation.--In any proceeding under this 
     section, the participant shall be barred from bringing any 
     challenge to any determination of the Administrator or the 
     Asbestos Insurers Commission regarding its liability under 
     this Act, or to the constitutionality of this Act or any 
     provision thereof, if such challenge could have been made 
     during the review provided under section 204(i)(10), or in a 
     judicial review proceeding under section 303.
       (h) Deposit of Funds.--
       (1) In general.--Any funds collected under subsection 
     (c)(2) (A) or (C) shall be--
       (A) deposited in the Fund; and
       (B) used only to pay--
       (i) claims for awards for an eligible disease or condition 
     determined under title I; or
       (ii) claims for reimbursement for medical monitoring 
     determined under title I.
       (2) No effect on other liabilities.--The imposition of a 
     fine under subsection (c)(2)(C) shall have no effect on--
       (A) the assessment of contributions under subtitles A and 
     B; or
       (B) any other provision of this Act.
       (i) Property of the Estate.--Section 541(b) of title 11, 
     United States Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (4)(B)(ii), by striking ``or'' at the end;
       (2) in paragraph (5), by striking ``prohibition.'' and 
     inserting ``prohibition; or''; and
       (3) by inserting after paragraph (5) and before the last 
     undesignated sentence the following:
       ``(6) the value of any pending claim against or the amount 
     of an award granted from the Asbestos Injury Claims 
     Resolution Fund established under the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006.''.
       (j) Transactions.--
       (1) Notice of transaction.--Any participant that has 
     engaged in any transaction or series of transactions under 
     which a significant portion of such participant's assets, 
     properties, or business was, directly or indirectly, 
     transferred by any means (including by sale, dividend, 
     contribution to a subsidiary or split-off) to 1 or more 
     persons other than the participant shall provide written 
     notice to the Administrator of such transaction (or series of 
     transactions).
       (2) Timing of notice and related actions.--
       (A) In general.--Any notice that a participant is required 
     to give under paragraph (1) shall be given not later than 30 
     days after the date of consummation of the transaction or the 
     first transaction to occur in a proposed series of 
     transactions.
       (B) Other notifications.--
       (i) In general.--Not later than the date in any year by 
     which a participant is required to make its contribution to 
     the Fund, the participant shall deliver to the Administrator 
     a written certification stating that--

       (I) the participant has complied during the period since 
     the last such certification or the date of enactment of this 
     Act with the notice requirements under this subsection; or
       (II) the participant was not required to provide any notice 
     under this subsection during such period.

       (ii) Summary.--The Administrator shall include in the 
     annual report required to be submitted to Congress under 
     section 405 a summary of all such notices (after removing all 
     confidential identifying information) received during the 
     most recent fiscal year.
       (C) Notice completion.--The Administrator shall not 
     consider any notice given under paragraph (1) as given until 
     such time as the Administrator receives substantially all the 
     information required by this subsection.
       (3) Contents of notice.--
       (A) In general.--The Administrator shall determine by rule 
     or regulation the information to be included in the notice 
     required under this subsection, which shall include such 
     information as may be necessary to enable the Administrator 
     to determine whether--
       (i) the person or persons to whom the assets, properties, 
     or business were transferred in the transaction (or series of 
     transactions) should be considered to be the successor in 
     interest of the participant for purposes of this Act; or
       (ii) the transaction (or series of transactions) is subject 
     to avoidance by a trustee under section 544(b) or 548 of 
     title 11, United States Code, as if, but whether or not, the 
     participant is subject to a case under title 11, United 
     States Code.
       (B) Statements.--The notice shall also include--
       (i) a statement by the participant as to whether the 
     participant believes any person has become a successor in 
     interest to the participant for purposes of this Act and, if 
     so, the identity of that person; and
       (ii) a statement by the participant as to whether that 
     person has acknowledged that it has become a successor in 
     interest for purposes of this Act.
       (4) Definition.--In this subsection, the term ``significant 
     portion of the assets, properties, or business of a 
     participant'' means assets (including tangible or intangible 
     assets, securities, and cash), properties or business of such 
     participant (or its affiliated group, to the extent that the 
     participant has elected to be part of an affiliated group 
     under section 204(f)) that, together with any other asset, 
     property, or business transferred by such participant in any 
     of the previous completed 5 fiscal years of such participant 
     (or, as appropriate, its affiliated group), and as determined 
     in accordance with United States generally accepted 
     accounting principles as in effect from time to time--
       (A) generated at least 40 percent of the revenues of such 
     participant (or its affiliated group);
       (B) constituted at least 40 percent of the assets of such 
     participant (or its affiliated group);
       (C) generated at least 40 percent of the operating cash 
     flows of such participant (or its affiliated group); or
       (D) generated at least 40 percent of the net income or loss 
     of such participant (or its affiliated group),

     as measured during any of such 5 previous fiscal years.
       (5) Right of action.--
       (A) In general.--Notwithstanding section 221(f), if the 
     Administrator or any participant believes that a participant 
     has engaged, directly or indirectly, in, or is the subject 
     of, a transaction (or series of transactions)--
       (i) involving a person or persons who, as a result of such 
     transaction (or series of transactions), may have or may 
     become the successor in interest or successors in interest of 
     such participant, where the status as a successor in interest 
     has not been stated and acknowledged by the participant and 
     such person; or
       (ii) that may be subject to avoidance by a trustee under 
     section 544(b) or 548 of title 11, United States Code, as if, 
     but whether or not, the participant is a subject to a case 
     under title 11, United States Code,

     then the Administrator or such participant may, as a deemed 
     creditor under applicable law, bring a civil action in an 
     appropriate forum against the participant or any other person 
     who is either a party to the transaction (or series of 
     transactions) or the recipient of any asset, property, or 
     business of the participant.

[[Page S5375]]

       (B) Relief allowed.--In any action commenced under this 
     subsection, the Administrator or a participant, as 
     applicable, may seek--
       (i) with respect to a transaction (or series of 
     transactions) referenced in clause (i) of subparagraph (A), a 
     declaratory judgment regarding whether such person has become 
     the successor in interest of such participant; or
       (ii) with respect to a transaction (or series of 
     transactions) referenced in clause (ii) of subparagraph (A) a 
     temporary restraining order or a preliminary or permanent 
     injunction such other relief regarding such transaction (or 
     series of transactions) as the court determines to be 
     necessary to ensure that performance of a participant's 
     payment obligations under this Act is not materially impaired 
     by reason of such transaction (or series of transactions).
       (C) Applicability.--If the Administrator or a participant 
     wishes to challenge a statement made by a participant that a 
     person has not become a successor in interest for purposes of 
     this Act, then this paragraph shall be the exclusive means by 
     which the determination of whether such person became a 
     successor in interest of the participant shall be made. This 
     paragraph shall not preempt any other rights of any person 
     under applicable Federal or State law.
       (D) Venue.--Any action under this paragraph shall be 
     exclusively brought in any appropriate United States district 
     court or, to the extent necessary to obtain complete relief, 
     any other appropriate forum outside of the United States.
       (6) Rules and regulations.--The Administrator may 
     promulgate regulations to effectuate the intent of this 
     subsection, including regulations relating to the form, 
     timing, and content of notices.

     SEC. 224. INTEREST ON UNDERPAYMENT OR NONPAYMENT.

       If any amount of payment obligation under this title is not 
     paid on or before the last date prescribed for payment, the 
     liable party shall pay interest on such amount at the Federal 
     short-term rate determined under section 6621(b) of the 
     Internal Revenue Code of 1986, plus 5 percentage points, for 
     the period from such last date to the date paid.

     SEC. 225. EDUCATION, CONSULTATION, SCREENING, AND MONITORING.

       (a) In General.--The Administrator shall establish a 
     program for the education, consultation, medical screening, 
     and medical monitoring of persons with exposure to asbestos. 
     The program shall be funded by the Fund.
       (b) Outreach and Education.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 1 year after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall establish an 
     outreach and education program, including a website designed 
     to provide information about asbestos-related medical 
     conditions to members of populations at risk of developing 
     such conditions.
       (2) Information.--The information provided under paragraph 
     (1) shall include information about--
       (A) the signs and symptoms of asbestos-related medical 
     conditions;
       (B) the value of appropriate medical screening programs; 
     and
       (C) actions that the individuals can take to reduce their 
     future health risks related to asbestos exposure.
       (3) Contracts.--Preference in any contract under this 
     subsection shall be given to providers that are existing 
     nonprofit organizations with a history and experience of 
     providing occupational health outreach and educational 
     programs for individuals exposed to asbestos.
       (c) Medical Screening Program.--
       (1) Establishment of program.--Not sooner than 18 months or 
     later than 24 months after the Administrator certifies that 
     the Fund is fully operational and processing claims at a 
     reasonable rate, the Administrator shall adopt guidelines 
     establishing a medical screening program for individuals at 
     high risk of asbestos-related disease resulting from an 
     asbestos-related disease. In promulgating such guidelines, 
     the Administrator shall consider the views of the Advisory 
     Committee on Asbestos Disease Compensation, the Medical 
     Advisory Committee, and the public.
       (2) Eligibility criteria.--
       (A) In general.--The guidelines promulgated under this 
     subsection shall establish criteria for participation in the 
     medical screening program.
       (B) Considerations.--In promulgating eligibility criteria 
     the Administrator shall take into consideration all factors 
     relevant to the individual's effective cumulative exposure to 
     asbestos, including--
       (i) any industry in which the individual worked;
       (ii) the individual's occupation and work setting;
       (iii) the historical period in which exposure took place;
       (iv) the duration of the exposure;
       (v) the intensity and duration of nonoccupational 
     exposures;
       (vi) the intensity and duration of exposure to risk levels 
     of naturally occurring asbestos as defined by the 
     Environmental Protection Agency; and
       (vii) any other factors that the Administrator determines 
     relevant.
       (3) Protocols.--The guidelines developed under this 
     subsection shall establish protocols for medical screening, 
     which shall include--
       (A) administration of a health evaluation and work history 
     questionnaire;
       (B) an evaluation of smoking history;
       (C) a physical examination by a qualified physician with a 
     doctor-patient relationship with the individual;
       (D) a chest x-ray read by a certified B-reader as defined 
     under section 121(a)(4); and
       (E) pulmonary function testing as defined under section 
     121(a)(13).
       (4) Frequency.--The Administrator shall establish the 
     frequency with which medical screening shall be provided or 
     be made available to eligible individuals, which shall be not 
     less than every 5 years.
       (5) Provision of services.--The Administrator shall provide 
     medical screening to eligible individuals directly or by 
     contract with another agency of the Federal Government, with 
     State or local governments, or with private providers of 
     medical services. The Administrator shall establish strict 
     qualifications for the providers of such services, and shall 
     periodically audit the providers of services under this 
     subsection, to ensure their integrity, high degree of 
     competence, and compliance with all applicable technical and 
     professional standards. No provider of medical screening 
     services may have earned more than 15 percent of their income 
     from the provision of services of any kind in connection with 
     asbestos litigation in any of the 3 years preceding the date 
     of enactment of this Act. All contracts with providers of 
     medical screening services under this subsection shall 
     contain provisions for reimbursement of screening services at 
     a reasonable rate and termination of such contracts for cause 
     if the Administrator determines that the service provider 
     fails to meet the qualifications established under this 
     subsection.
       (6) Limitation of compensation for services.--The 
     compensation required to be paid to a provider of medical 
     screening services for such services furnished to an eligible 
     individual shall be limited to the amount that would be 
     reimbursed at the time of the furnishing of such services 
     under title XVIII of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395 
     et seq.) for similar services if such services are covered 
     under title XVIII of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395 
     et seq.).
       (7) Funding; periodic review.--
       (A) Funding.--The Administrator shall make such funds 
     available from the Fund to implement this section, with a 
     minimum of $20,000,000 but not more than $30,000,000 each 
     year in each of the 5 years following the effective date of 
     the medical screening program. Notwithstanding the preceding 
     sentence, the Administrator shall suspend the operation of 
     the program or reduce its funding level if necessary to 
     preserve the solvency of the Fund and to prevent the sunset 
     of the overall program under section 405(g).
       (B) Review.--The Administrator may reduce the amount of 
     funding below $20,000,000 each year if the program is fully 
     implemented. The Administrator's first annual report under 
     section 405 following the close of the 4th year of operation 
     of the medical screening program shall include an analysis of 
     the usage of the program, its cost and effectiveness, its 
     medical value, and the need to continue that program for an 
     additional 5-year period. The Administrator shall also 
     recommend to Congress any improvements that may be required 
     to make the program more effective, efficient, and 
     economical, and shall recommend a funding level for the 
     program for the 5 years following the period of initial 
     funding referred to under subparagraph (A).
       (d) Limitation.--In no event shall the total amount 
     allocated to the medical screening program established under 
     this subsection over the lifetime of the Fund exceed 
     $600,000,000.
       (e) Medical Monitoring Program and Protocols.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall establish 
     procedures for a medical monitoring program for persons 
     exposed to asbestos who have been approved for level I 
     compensation under section 131.
       (2) Procedures.--The procedures for medical monitoring 
     shall include--
       (A) specific medical tests to be provided to eligible 
     individuals and the periodicity of those tests, which shall 
     initially be provided every 3 years and include--
       (i) administration of a health evaluation and work history 
     questionnaire;
       (ii) physical examinations, including blood pressure 
     measurement, chest examination, and examination for clubbing;
       (iii) AP and lateral chest x-ray; and
       (iv) spirometry performed according to ATS standards;
       (B) qualifications of medical providers who are to provide 
     the tests required under subparagraph (A); and
       (C) administrative provisions for reimbursement from the 
     Fund of the costs of monitoring eligible claimants, including 
     the costs associated with the visits of the claimants to 
     physicians in connection with medical monitoring, and with 
     the costs of performing and analyzing the tests.
       (3) Preferences.--
       (A) In general.--In administering the monitoring program 
     under this subsection, preference shall be given to medical 
     and program providers with--
       (i) a demonstrated capacity for identifying, contacting, 
     and evaluating populations of workers or others previously 
     exposed to asbestos; and
       (ii) experience in establishing networks of medical 
     providers to conduct medical screening and medical monitoring 
     examinations.
       (B) Provision of lists.--Claimants that are eligible to 
     participate in the medical

[[Page S5376]]

     monitoring program shall be provided with a list of approved 
     providers in their geographic area at the time such claimants 
     become eligible to receive medical monitoring.
       (f) Contracts.--The Administrator may enter into contracts 
     with qualified program providers that would permit the 
     program providers to undertake large-scale medical screening 
     and medical monitoring programs by means of subcontracts with 
     a network of medical providers, or other health providers.
       (g) Review.--Not later than 5 years after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, and every 5 years thereafter, the 
     Administrator shall review, and if necessary update, the 
     protocols and procedures established under this section.

     SEC. 226. NATIONAL MESOTHELIOMA RESEARCH AND TREATMENT 
                   PROGRAM.

       (a) In General.--There is established the National 
     Mesothelioma Research and Treatment Program (referred to in 
     this section as the ``Program'') to investigate and advance 
     the detection, prevention, treatment, and cure of malignant 
     mesothelioma.
       (b) Mesothelioma Centers.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall make available 
     $1,500,000 from the Fund, and the Director of the National 
     Institutes of Health shall make available $1,000,000 from 
     amounts available to the Director, for each of fiscal years 
     2006 through 2015, for the establishment of each of 10 
     mesothelioma disease research and treatment centers.
       (2) Requirements.--The Director of the National Institutes 
     of Health, in consultation with the Medical Advisory 
     Committee, shall conduct a competitive peer review process to 
     select sites for the centers described in paragraph (1). The 
     Director shall ensure that sites selected under this 
     paragraph are--
       (A) geographically distributed throughout the United States 
     with special consideration given to areas of high incidence 
     of mesothelioma disease;
       (B) closely associated with Department of Veterans Affairs 
     medical centers, in order to provide research benefits and 
     care to veterans who have suffered excessively from 
     mesothelioma;
       (C) engaged in exemplary laboratory and clinical 
     mesothelioma research, including clinical trials, to provide 
     mechanisms for effective therapeutic treatments, as well as 
     detection and prevention, particularly in areas of palliation 
     of disease symptoms and pain management;
       (D) participants in the National Mesothelioma Registry and 
     Tissue Bank under subsection (c) and the annual International 
     Mesothelioma Symposium under subsection (d)(2)(E);
       (E) with respect to research and treatment efforts, 
     coordinated with other centers and institutions involved in 
     exemplary mesothelioma research and treatment;
       (F) able to facilitate transportation and lodging for 
     mesothelioma patients, so as to enable patients to 
     participate in the newest developing treatment protocols, and 
     to enable the centers to recruit patients in numbers 
     sufficient to conduct necessary clinical trials; and
       (G) nonprofit hospitals, universities, or medical or 
     research institutions incorporated or organized in the United 
     States.
       (c) Mesothelioma Registry and Tissue Bank.--
       (1) Establishment.--The Administrator shall make available 
     $1,000,000 from the Fund, and the Director of the National 
     Institutes of Health shall make available $1,000,000 from 
     amounts available to the Director, for each of fiscal years 
     2006 through 2015 for the establishment, maintenance, and 
     operation of a National Mesothelioma Registry to collect data 
     regarding symptoms, pathology, evaluation, treatment, 
     outcomes, and quality of life and a Tissue Bank to include 
     the pre- and post-treatment blood (serum and blood cells) 
     specimens as well as tissue specimens from biopsies and 
     surgery. Not less than $500,000 of the amount made available 
     under the preceding sentence in each fiscal year shall be 
     allocated for the collection and maintenance of tissue 
     specimens.
       (2) Requirements.--The Director of the National Institutes 
     of Health, with the advice and consent of the Medical 
     Advisory Committee, shall conduct a competitive peer review 
     process to select a site to administer the Registry and 
     Tissue Bank described in paragraph (1). The Director shall 
     ensure that the site selected under this paragraph--
       (A) is available to all mesothelioma patients and 
     qualifying physicians throughout the United States;
       (B) is subject to all applicable medical and patient 
     privacy laws and regulations;
       (C) is carrying out activities to ensure that data is 
     accessible via the Internet; and
       (D) provides data and tissue samples to qualifying 
     researchers and physicians who apply for such data in order 
     to further the understanding, prevention, screening, 
     diagnosis, or treatment of malignant mesothelioma.
       (d) Center for Mesothelioma Education.--
       (1) Establishment.--The Administrator shall make available 
     $1,000,000 from the Fund, and the Director of the National 
     Institutes of Health shall make available $1,000,000 from 
     amounts available to the Director, for each of fiscal years 
     2006 through 2015 for the establishment, with the advice and 
     consent of the Medical Advisory Committee, of a Center for 
     Mesothelioma Education (referred to in this section as the 
     ``Center'') to--
       (A) promote mesothelioma awareness and education;
       (B) assist mesothelioma patients and their family members 
     in obtaining necessary information; and
       (C) work with the centers established under subsection (b) 
     in advancing mesothelioma research.
       (2) Activities.--The Center shall--
       (A) educate the public about the new initiatives contained 
     in this section through a National Mesothelioma Awareness 
     Campaign;
       (B) develop and maintain a Mesothelioma Educational 
     Resource Center (referred to in this section as the 
     ``MERCI''), that is accessible via the Internet, to provide 
     mesothelioma patients, family members, and front-line 
     physicians with comprehensive, current information on 
     mesothelioma and its treatment, as well as on the existence 
     of, and general claim procedures for the Asbestos Injury 
     Claims Resolution Fund;
       (C) through the MERCI and otherwise, educate mesothelioma 
     patients, family members, and front-line physicians about, 
     and encourage such individuals to participate in, the centers 
     established under subsection (b), the Registry and the Tissue 
     Bank;
       (D) complement the research efforts of the centers 
     established under subsection (b) by awarding competitive, 
     peer-reviewed grants for the training of clinical specialist 
     fellows in mesothelioma, and for highly innovative, 
     experimental or pre-clinical research; and
       (E) conduct an annual International Mesothelioma Symposium.
       (3) Requirements.--The Center shall--
       (A) be a nonprofit corporation under section 501(c)(3) of 
     the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
       (B) be a separate entity from and not an affiliate of any 
     hospital, university, or medical or research institution; and
       (C) demonstrate a history of program spending that is 
     devoted specifically to the mission of extending the survival 
     of current and future mesothelioma patients, including a 
     history of soliciting, peer reviewing through a competitive 
     process, and funding research grant applications relating to 
     the detection, prevention, treatment, and cure of 
     mesothelioma.
       (4) Contracts for oversight.--The Director of the National 
     Institutes of Health may enter into contracts with the Center 
     for the selection and oversight of the centers established 
     under subsection (b), or selection of the director of the 
     Registry and the Tissue Bank under subsection (c) and 
     oversight of the Registry and the Tissue Bank.
       (e) Report and Recommendations.--Not later than September 
     30, 2015, The Director of the National Institutes of Health 
     shall, after opportunity for public comment and review, 
     publish and provide to Congress a report and recommendations 
     on the results achieved and information gained through the 
     Program, including--
       (1) information on the status of mesothelioma as a national 
     health issue, including--
       (A) annual United States incidence and death rate 
     information and whether such rates are increasing or 
     decreasing;
       (B) the average prognosis; and
       (C) the effectiveness of treatments and means of 
     prevention;
       (2) promising advances in mesothelioma treatment and 
     research which could be further developed if the Program is 
     reauthorized; and
       (3) a summary of advances in mesothelioma treatment made in 
     the 10-year period prior to the report and whether those 
     advances would justify continuation of the Program and 
     whether it should be reauthorized for an additional 10 years.
       (f) Severability.--If any provision of this Act, or 
     amendment made by this Act, or the application of such 
     provision or amendment to any person or circumstance is held 
     to be unconstitutional, the remainder of this Act (including 
     this section), the amendments made by this Act, and the 
     application of the provisions of such to any person or 
     circumstance shall not be affected thereby.
       (g) Regulations.--The Director of the National Institutes 
     of Health shall promulgate regulations to provide for the 
     implementation of this section.

                       TITLE III--JUDICIAL REVIEW

     SEC. 301. JUDICIAL REVIEW OF RULES AND REGULATIONS.

       (a) Exclusive Jurisdiction.--The United States Court of 
     Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit shall have 
     exclusive jurisdiction over any action to review rules or 
     regulations promulgated by the Administrator or the Asbestos 
     Insurers Commission under this Act.
       (b) Period for Filing Petition.--A petition for review 
     under this section shall be filed not later than 60 days 
     after the date notice of such promulgation appears in the 
     Federal Register.
       (c) Expedited Procedures.--The United States Court of 
     Appeals for the District of Columbia shall provide for 
     expedited procedures for reviews under this section.

     SEC. 302. JUDICIAL REVIEW OF AWARD DECISIONS.

       (a) In General.--Any claimant adversely affected or 
     aggrieved by a final decision of the Administrator awarding 
     or denying compensation under title I may petition for 
     judicial review of such decision. Any petition for review 
     under this section shall be filed within 90 days of the 
     issuance of a final decision of the Administrator.
       (b) Exclusive Jurisdiction.--A petition for review may only 
     be filed in the United

[[Page S5377]]

     States Court of Appeals for the circuit in which the claimant 
     resides at the time of the issuance of the final order.
       (c) Standard of Review.--The court shall uphold the 
     decision of the Administrator unless the court determines, 
     upon review of the record as a whole, that the decision is 
     not supported by substantial evidence, is contrary to law, or 
     is not in accordance with procedure required by law.
       (d) Expedited Procedures.--The United States Court of 
     Appeals shall provide for expedited procedures for reviews 
     under this section.

     SEC. 303. JUDICIAL REVIEW OF PARTICIPANTS' ASSESSMENTS.

       (a) Exclusive Jurisdiction.--The United States Court of 
     Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit shall have 
     exclusive jurisdiction over any action to review a final 
     determination by the Administrator or the Asbestos Insurers 
     Commission regarding the liability of any person to make a 
     payment to the Fund, including a notice of applicable subtier 
     assignment under section 204(i), a notice of financial 
     hardship or inequity determination under section 204(d), a 
     notice of a distributor's adjustment under section 204(m), 
     and a notice of insurer participant obligation under section 
     212(b).
       (b) Period for Filing Action.--A petition for review under 
     subsection (a) shall be filed not later than 60 days after a 
     final determination by the Administrator or the Commission 
     giving rise to the action. Any defendant participant who 
     receives a notice of its applicable subtier under section 
     204(i), a notice of financial hardship or inequity 
     determination under section 204(d), or a notice of a 
     distributor's adjustment under section 204(m), shall commence 
     any action within 30 days after a decision on rehearing under 
     section 204(i)(10), and any insurer participant who receives 
     a notice of a payment obligation under section 212(b) shall 
     commence any action within 30 days after receiving such 
     notice. The court shall give such action expedited 
     consideration.

     SEC. 304. OTHER JUDICIAL CHALLENGES.

       (a) Exclusive Jurisdiction.--The United States District 
     Court for the District of Columbia shall have exclusive 
     jurisdiction over any action for declaratory or injunctive 
     relief challenging any provision of this Act. An action under 
     this section shall be filed not later than 60 days after the 
     date of enactment of this Act or 60 days after the final 
     action by the Administrator or the Commission giving rise to 
     the action, whichever is later.
       (b) Direct Appeal.--A final decision in the action shall be 
     reviewable on appeal directly to the Supreme Court of the 
     United States. Such appeal shall be taken by the filing of a 
     notice of appeal within 30 days, and the filing of a 
     jurisdictional statement within 60 days, of the entry of the 
     final decision.
       (c) Expedited Procedures.--It shall be the duty of the 
     United States District Court for the District of Columbia and 
     the Supreme Court of the United States to advance on the 
     docket and to expedite to the greatest possible extent the 
     disposition of the action and appeal.

     SEC. 305. STAYS, EXCLUSIVITY, AND CONSTITUTIONAL REVIEW.

       (a) No Stays.--
       (1) Payments.--No court may issue a stay of payment by any 
     party into the Fund pending its final judgment.
       (2) Legal challenges.--No court may issue a stay or 
     injunction pending final judicial action, including the 
     exhaustion of all appeals, on a legal challenge to this Act 
     or any portion of this Act.
       (b) Exclusivity of Review.--An action of the Administrator 
     or the Asbestos Insurers Commission for which review could 
     have been obtained under section 301, 302, or 303 shall not 
     be subject to judicial review in any other proceeding.
       (c) Constitutional Review.--
       (1) In general.--The United States District Court for the 
     District of Columbia shall have exclusive jurisdiction over 
     any action challenging the constitutionality of any provision 
     or application of this Act. The following rules shall apply:
       (A) The action shall be filed in the United States District 
     Court for the District of Columbia and shall be heard by a 3-
     judge court convened under section 2284 of title 28, United 
     States Code.
       (B) A final decision in the action shall be reviewable only 
     by appeal directly to the Supreme Court of the United States. 
     Such appeal shall be taken by the filing of a notice of 
     appeal within 10 days, and the filing of a jurisdictional 
     statement within 30 days, after the entry of the final 
     decision.
       (C) It shall be the duty of the United States District 
     Court for the District of Columbia and the Supreme Court of 
     the United States to advance on the docket and to expedite to 
     the greatest possible extent the disposition of the action 
     and appeal.
       (2) Repayment to asbestos trust and class action trust.--If 
     the transfer of the assets of any asbestos trust of a debtor 
     or any class action trust (or this Act as a whole) is held to 
     be unconstitutional or otherwise unlawful, the Fund shall 
     transfer the remaining balance of such assets (determined 
     under section 405(f)(1)(A)(iii)) back to the appropriate 
     asbestos trust or class action trust within 90 days after 
     final judicial action on the legal challenge, including the 
     exhaustion of all appeals.

                   TITLE IV--MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

     SEC. 401. FALSE INFORMATION.

       (a) In General.--Chapter 63 of title 18, United States 
     Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

     ``Sec. 1351. Fraud and false statements in connection with 
       participation in Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution Fund

       ``(a) Fraud Relating to Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution 
     Fund.--Whoever knowingly and willfully executes, or attempts 
     to execute, a scheme or artifice to defraud the Office of 
     Asbestos Disease Compensation or the Asbestos Insurers 
     Commission under title II of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006 shall be fined under this title or 
     imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.
       ``(b) False Statement Relating to Asbestos Injury Claims 
     Resolution Fund.--
       ``(1) In general.--It shall be unlawful for any person, in 
     any matter involving the Office of Asbestos Disease 
     Compensation or the Asbestos Insurers Commission, to 
     knowingly and willfully--
       ``(A) falsify, conceal, or cover up by any trick, scheme, 
     or device a material fact;
       ``(B) make any materially false, fictitious, or fraudulent 
     statement or representation; or
       ``(C) make or use any false writing or document knowing the 
     same to contain any materially false, fictitious, or 
     fraudulent statement or entry, in connection with the award 
     of a claim or the determination of a participant's payment 
     obligation under title I or II of the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006.
       ``(2) Penalty.--A person who violates this subsection shall 
     be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 10 
     years, or both.''.
       (b) Technical and Conforming Amendment.--The table of 
     sections for chapter 63 of title 18, United States Code, is 
     amended by adding at the end the following:

``1351.  Fraud and false statements in connection with participation in 
              Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution Fund.''.

     SEC. 402. EFFECT ON BANKRUPTCY LAWS.

       (a) No Automatic Stay.--Section 362(b) of title 11, United 
     States Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (17), by striking ``or'' at the end;
       (2) in paragraph (18), by striking the period at the end 
     and inserting ``; or''; and
       (3) by inserting after paragraph (18) the following:
       ``(19) under subsection (a) of this section of the 
     enforcement of any payment obligations under section 204 of 
     the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, 
     against a debtor, or the property of the estate of a debtor, 
     that is a participant (as that term is defined in section 3 
     of that Act).''.
       (b) Assumption of Executory Contract.--Section 365 of title 
     11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
     following:
       ``(p) If a debtor is a participant (as that term is defined 
     in section 3 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution 
     Act of 2006), the trustee shall be deemed to have assumed all 
     executory contracts entered into by the participant under 
     section 204 of that Act. The trustee may not reject any such 
     executory contract.''.
       (c) Allowed Administrative Expenses.--Section 503 of title 
     11, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
     following:
       ``(c)(1) Claims or expenses of the United States, the 
     Attorney General, or the Administrator (as that term is 
     defined in section 3 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006) based upon the asbestos payment 
     obligations of a debtor that is a Participant (as that term 
     is defined in section 3 of that Act), shall be paid as an 
     allowed administrative expense. The debtor shall not be 
     entitled to either notice or a hearing with respect to such 
     claims.
       ``(2) For purposes of paragraph (1), the term `asbestos 
     payment obligation' means any payment obligation under title 
     II of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 
     2006.''.
       (d) No Discharge.--Section 523 of title 11, United States 
     Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
       ``(f) A discharge under section 727, 1141, 1228, or 1328 of 
     this title does not discharge any debtor that is a 
     participant (as that term is defined in section 3 of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006) of the 
     debtor's payment obligations assessed against the participant 
     under title II of that Act.''.
       (e) Payment.--Section 524 of title 11, United States Code, 
     is amended by adding at the end the following:
       ``(i) Participant Debtors.--
       ``(1) In general.--Paragraphs (2) and (3) shall apply to a 
     debtor who--
       ``(A) is a participant that has made prior asbestos 
     expenditures (as such terms are defined in the Fairness in 
     Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006); and
       ``(B) is subject to a case under this title that is 
     pending--
       ``(i) on the date of enactment of the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006; or
       ``(ii) at any time during the 1-year period preceding the 
     date of enactment of that Act.
       ``(2) Tier i debtors.--A debtor that has been assigned to 
     Tier I under section 202 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006, shall make payments in accordance 
     with sections 202 and 203 of that Act.
       ``(3) Treatment of payment obligations.--All payment 
     obligations of a debtor under sections 202 and 203 of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006 shall--

[[Page S5378]]

       ``(A) constitute costs and expenses of administration of a 
     case under section 503 of this title;
       ``(B) notwithstanding any case pending under this title, be 
     payable in accordance with section 202 of that Act;
       ``(C) not be stayed;
       ``(D) not be affected as to enforcement or collection by 
     any stay or injunction of any court; and
       ``(E) not be impaired or discharged in any current or 
     future case under this title.''.
       (f) Treatment of Trusts.--Section 524 of title 11, United 
     States Code, as amended by this Act, is amended by adding at 
     the end the following:
       ``(j) Asbestos Trusts.--
       ``(1) In general.--A trust shall assign a portion of the 
     corpus of the trust to the Asbestos Injury Claims Resolution 
     Fund (referred to in this subsection as the `Fund') as 
     established under the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution 
     Act of 2006 if the trust qualifies as a `trust' under section 
     201 of that Act.
       ``(2) Transfer of trust assets.--
       ``(A) In general.--
       ``(i) Except as provided under clause (ii) of this 
     subparagraph and subparagraphs (B), (C), and (E), the assets 
     in any trust established to provide compensation for asbestos 
     claims (as defined in section 3 of the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006) shall be transferred to the 
     Fund not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of 
     the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006 or 30 
     days following funding of a trust established under a 
     reorganization plan subject to section 202(c) of that Act. 
     Except as provided under subparagraph (B), the Administrator 
     of the Fund shall accept such assets and utilize them for any 
     purposes of the Fund under section 221 of such Act, including 
     the payment of claims for awards under such Act to 
     beneficiaries of the trust from which the assets were 
     transferred.
       ``(ii) Notwithstanding clause (i), and except as provided 
     under subparagraphs (B), (C), and (E), any trust established 
     to provide compensation for asbestos claims (as defined in 
     section 3 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act 
     of 2006), other than a trust established under a 
     reorganization plan subject to section 202(c) of that Act, 
     shall transfer the assets in such trust to the Fund as 
     follows:

       ``(I) In the case of a trust established on or before 
     December 31, 2005, such trust shall transfer 90 percent of 
     the assets in such trust to the Fund not later than 90 days 
     after the date of enactment of the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006.
       ``(II) In the case of a trust established after December 
     31, 2005, such trust shall transfer 88 percent of the assets 
     in such trust to the Fund not later than 90 days after the 
     date of enactment of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006.

       ``(iii) Not later than 90 days after the date on which the 
     Administrator of the Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation 
     (referred to in this section as the `Administrator') 
     certifies in accordance with section 106(f)(3)(E)(ii) of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006 that the 
     Fund is fully operational and paying all valid asbestos 
     claims at a reasonable rate, any trust transferring assets 
     under clause (ii) shall transfer all remaining assets in such 
     trust to the Fund. The transfer required by this clause shall 
     not include any trust assets needed to pay--

       ``(I) previously incurred expenses; or
       ``(II) claims determined to be eligible for compensation 
     under clause (vi).

       ``(iv) Except as provided under subparagraph (B), the 
     Administrator of the Fund shall accept any assets transferred 
     under clauses (ii) or (iii) and utilize them for any purposes 
     for the Fund under section 221 of the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006, including the payment of 
     claims for awards under such Act to beneficiaries of the 
     trust from which the assets were transferred.
       ``(v) Notwithstanding any other provision of Federal or 
     State law, no liability of any kind may be imposed on a 
     trustee of a trust for transferring assets to the Fund in 
     accordance with clause (i).
       ``(vi) Any trust transferring assets under clause (ii) 
     shall be subject to the following requirements:

       ``(I) The trust may continue to process asbestos claims, 
     make eligibility determinations, and pay claims in a manner 
     consistent with this clause if a claimant--

       ``(aa) provides to the trust a copy of a binding election 
     submitted to Administrator waiving the right to secure 
     compensation under section 106(f)(2) of the Fairness in 
     Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, unless the claimant 
     is permitted under section 106(f)(2)(B) of such Act to seek a 
     judgment or order for monetary damages from a Federal or 
     State court;
       ``(bb) meets the requirements for compensation under the 
     distribution plan for the trust as of the date of enactment 
     of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006;
       ``(cc) for any condition satisfies the medical criteria 
     under the distribution plan for the trust that is most nearly 
     equivalent to the medical criteria described in paragraph 
     (2), (3), (4), (5), (7), (8), or (9) of section 121(d) of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, except 
     that, notwithstanding any provision of the distribution plan 
     of the trust to the contrary, the trust shall not accept the 
     results of a DLCO test (as such test is defined in section 
     121(a) of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 
     2006) for the purpose of demonstrating respiratory 
     impairment; and
       ``(dd) for any of the cancers listed in section 121(d)(6) 
     of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006 
     does not seek, and the trust does not pay, any compensation 
     until such time as the Institute of Medicine finds that there 
     is a causal relationship between asbestos exposure and such 
     cancer, in which case such claims may be paid if such claims 
     otherwise qualify for compensation under the distribution 
     plan of the trust as of the date of enactment of the Fairness 
     in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006.

       ``(II) The trust shall not accept medical evidence from any 
     physician, medical facility, or laboratory whose evidence 
     would be not be accepted as evidence--

       ``(aa) under the Manville Trust as of the date of enactment 
     of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006; or
       ``(bb) by the Administrator under section 115(a)(2) of such 
     Act.

       ``(III) The trust shall not amend its scheduled payment 
     amount or payment percentage as in effect on the date of 
     enactment of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act 
     of 2006.
       ``(IV) The trust shall not amend its eligibility criteria 
     after the date of enactment of the Fairness in Asbestos 
     Injury Resolution Act of 2006, except to conform any criteria 
     in any category under the distribution plan of the trust with 
     related criteria in a related category under section 121 of 
     the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006.
       ``(V) The trust shall notify the Administrator of the Fund 
     of any claim determined to be eligible for compensation after 
     the date of enactment of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006, and the amount of any such 
     compensation awarded to the claimant of such claim. The 
     notification required by this subclause shall be made in such 
     form as the Administrator shall require, and not later than 
     15 days after the date the determination is made.
       ``(VI) The trust shall not pay any claim without a 
     certification by a claimant, subject to the penalties 
     described in the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act 
     of 2006, stating the amount of collateral source compensation 
     that such claimant has received, or is entitled to receive, 
     under section 134 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006. In the event that collateral source 
     compensation exceeds the amount that the claimant would be 
     paid (excluding any adjustments under section 131(b) (3) and 
     (4) of the Act) for such condition under the Act most similar 
     to the claimant's claim with the trust, such trust shall not 
     make any payment to the claimant.
       ``(VII) Upon finding that the trust has breached any 
     condition or conditions of this clause, the Administrator 
     shall require the immediate payment of remaining trust assets 
     into the Fund in accordance with section 402(f) of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006. The 
     Administrator shall be entitled to an injunction against 
     further payments of nonliquidated claims from the assets of 
     the trust during the pendency of any dispute regarding the 
     findings of noncompliance by the Administrator. The court in 
     which any action to enforce the obligations of the trust is 
     pending shall afford the action expedited consideration.

       ``(B) Authority to refuse assets.--The Administrator of the 
     Fund may refuse to accept any asset that the Administrator 
     determines may create liability for the Fund in excess of the 
     value of the asset.
       ``(C) Allocation of trust assets.--If a trust under 
     subparagraph (A) has beneficiaries with claims that are not 
     asbestos claims, the assets transferred to the Fund under 
     subparagraph (A) shall not include assets allocable to such 
     beneficiaries. The trustees of any such trust shall determine 
     the amount of such trust assets to be reserved for the 
     continuing operation of the trust in processing and paying 
     claims that are not asbestos claims. The trustees shall 
     demonstrate to the satisfaction of the Administrator, or by 
     clear and convincing evidence in a proceeding brought before 
     the United States District Court for the District of Columbia 
     in accordance with paragraph (4), that the amount reserved is 
     properly allocable to claims other than asbestos claims.
       ``(D) Sale of fund assets.--The investment requirements 
     under section 222 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006 shall not be construed to require the 
     Administrator of the Fund to sell assets transferred to the 
     Fund under subparagraph (A).
       ``(E) Liquidated claims.--Except as specifically provided 
     in this subparagraph, all asbestos claims against a trust are 
     superseded and preempted as of the date of enactment of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, and a 
     trust shall not make any payment relating to asbestos claims 
     after that date. If, in the ordinary course and the normal 
     and usual administration of the trust consistent with past 
     practices, a trust had before the date of enactment of the 
     Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, made all 
     determinations necessary to entitle an individual claimant to 
     a noncontingent cash payment from the trust, the trust shall 
     (i) make any lump-sum cash payment due to that claimant, and 
     (ii) make or provide for all remaining noncontingent payments 
     on any award being paid or scheduled to be paid on an 
     installment basis, in each case only to the same extent that 
     the trust would have made such

[[Page S5379]]

     cash payments in the ordinary course and consistent with past 
     practices before enactment of that Act. A trust shall not 
     make any payment in respect of any alleged contingent right 
     to recover any greater amount than the trust had already 
     paid, or had completed all determinations necessary to pay, 
     to a claimant in cash in accordance with its ordinary 
     distribution procedures in effect as of June 1, 2003.
       ``(3) Injunction.--
       ``(A) In general.--Any injunction issued as part of the 
     formation of a trust described in paragraph (1) shall remain 
     in full force and effect, except that any provision of such 
     an injunction channeling asbestos claims to such a trust for 
     resolution shall have no force and effect. No court, Federal 
     or State, may enjoin the transfer of assets by a trust to the 
     Fund in accordance with this subsection pending resolution of 
     any litigation challenging such transfer or the validity of 
     this subsection or of any provision of the Fairness in 
     Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, and an interlocutory 
     order denying such relief shall not be subject to immediate 
     appeal under section 1291(a) of title 28.
       ``(B) Availability of fund assets.--Notwithstanding any 
     other provision of law, once such a transfer has been made, 
     the assets of the Fund shall be available to satisfy any 
     final judgment entered in such an action and such transfer 
     shall no longer be subject to any appeal or review--
       ``(i) declaring that the transfer effected a taking of a 
     right or property for which an individual is constitutionally 
     entitled to just compensation; or
       ``(ii) requiring the transfer back to a trust of any or all 
     assets transferred by that trust to the Fund.
       ``(4) Jurisdiction.--Solely for purposes of implementing 
     this subsection, personal jurisdiction over every covered 
     trust, the trustees thereof, and any other necessary party, 
     and exclusive subject matter jurisdiction over every question 
     arising out of or related to this subsection, shall be vested 
     in the United States District Court for the District of 
     Columbia. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, 
     including section 1127 of this title, that court may make any 
     order necessary and appropriate to facilitate prompt 
     compliance with this subsection, including assuming 
     jurisdiction over and modifying, to the extent necessary, any 
     applicable confirmation order or other order with continuing 
     and prospective application to a covered trust. The court may 
     also resolve any related challenge to the constitutionality 
     of this subsection or of its application to any trust, 
     trustee, or individual claimant. The Administrator of the 
     Fund may bring an action seeking such an order or 
     modification, under the standards of rule 60(b) of the 
     Federal Rules of Civil Procedure or otherwise, and shall be 
     entitled to intervene as of right in any action brought by 
     any other party seeking interpretation, application, or 
     invalidation of this subsection. Any order denying relief 
     that would facilitate prompt compliance with the transfer 
     provisions of this subsection shall be subject to immediate 
     appeal under section 304 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006.''.
       (g) No Avoidance of Transfer.--Section 546 of title 11, 
     United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
     following:
       ``(h) Notwithstanding the rights and powers of a trustee 
     under sections 544, 545, 547, 548, 549, and 550 of this 
     title, if a debtor is a participant (as that term is defined 
     in section 3 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution 
     Act of 2006), the trustee may not avoid a transfer made by 
     the debtor under its payment obligations under section 202 or 
     203 of that Act.''.
       (h) Confirmation of Plan.--Section 1129(a) of title 11, 
     United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
     following:
       ``(14) If the debtor is a participant (as that term is 
     defined in section 3 of the Fairness in Asbestos Injury 
     Resolution Act of 2006), the plan provides for the 
     continuation after its effective date of payment of all 
     payment obligations under title II of that Act.''.
       (i) Effect on Insurance Receivership Proceedings.--
       (1) Lien.--In an insurance receivership proceeding 
     involving a direct insurer, reinsurer or runoff participant, 
     there shall be a lien in favor of the Fund for the amount of 
     any assessment and any such lien shall be given priority over 
     all other claims against the participant in receivership, 
     except for the expenses of administration of the receivership 
     and the perfected claims of the secured creditors. Any State 
     law that provides for priorities inconsistent with this 
     provision is preempted by this Act.
       (2) Payment of assessment.--Payment of any assessment 
     required by this Act shall not be subject to any automatic or 
     judicially entered stay in any insurance receivership 
     proceeding. This Act shall preempt any State law requiring 
     that payments by a direct insurer, reinsurer or runoff 
     participant in an insurance receivership proceeding be 
     approved by a court, receiver or other person. Payments of 
     assessments by any direct insurer or reinsurer participant 
     under this Act shall not be subject to the avoidance powers 
     of a receiver or a court in or relating to an insurance 
     receivership proceeding.
       (j) Standing in Bankruptcy Proceedings.--The Administrator 
     shall have standing in any bankruptcy case involving a debtor 
     participant. No bankruptcy court may require the 
     Administrator to return property seized to satisfy 
     obligations to the Fund.

     SEC. 403. EFFECT ON OTHER LAWS AND EXISTING CLAIMS.

       (a) Effect on Federal and State Law.--The provisions of 
     this Act shall supersede any Federal or State law insofar as 
     such law may relate to any asbestos claim, including any 
     claim described under subsection (e)(2).
       (b) Effect on Silica Claims.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this Act shall be 
     construed to preempt, bar, or otherwise preclude any personal 
     injury claim attributable to exposure to silica as to which 
     the plaintiff--
       (i) pleads with particularity and establishes by a 
     preponderance of evidence either that--

       (I) no claim has been asserted or filed by or with respect 
     to the exposed person in any forum for any asbestos-related 
     condition and the exposed person (or another claiming on 
     behalf of or through the exposed person) is not eligible for 
     any monetary award under this Act; or
       (II)(aa) the exposed person suffers or has suffered a 
     functional impairment that was caused by exposure to silica; 
     and
       (bb) asbestos exposure was not a substantial contributing 
     factor to such functional impairment; and

       (ii) satisfies the requirements of paragraph (2) .
       (B) Preemption.--Claims attributable to exposure to silica 
     that fail to meet the requirements of subparagraph (A) shall 
     be preempted by this Act.
       (2) Required evidence.--
       (A) In general.--In any claim to which paragraph (1) 
     applies, the initial pleading (or, for claims pending on the 
     date of enactment of this Act, an amended pleading to be 
     filed within 60 days after such date, but not later than 60 
     days before trial, shall plead with particularity the 
     elements of subparagraph (A)(i)(I) or (II) and shall be 
     accompanied by the information described under subparagraph 
     (B)(i) through (iv).
       (B) Pleadings.--If the claim pleads the elements of 
     paragraph (1)(A)(i)(II) and by the information described 
     under clauses (i) through (iv) of this subparagraph if the 
     claim pleads the elements of paragraph (1)(A)(i)(I)--
       (i) admissible evidence, including at a minimum, a B-
     reader's report, the underlying x-ray film and such other 
     evidence showing that the claim may be maintained and is not 
     preempted under paragraph (1);
       (ii) notice of any previous lawsuit or claim for benefits 
     in which the exposed person, or another claiming on behalf of 
     or through the injured person, asserted an injury or 
     disability based wholly or in part on exposure to asbestos;
       (iii) if known by the plaintiff after reasonable inquiry by 
     the plaintiff or his representative, the history of the 
     exposed person's exposure, if any, to asbestos; and
       (iv) copies of all medical and laboratory reports 
     pertaining to the exposed person that refer to asbestos or 
     asbestos exposure.
       (3) Statute of limitations.--In general, the statute of 
     limitations for a silica claim shall be governed by 
     applicable State law, except that in any case under this 
     subsection, the statute of limitations shall only start to 
     run when the plaintiff becomes impaired.
       (c) Superseding Provisions.--
       (1) In general.--Except as provided under paragraph (3) and 
     section 106(f), any agreement, understanding, or undertaking 
     by any person or affiliated group with respect to the 
     treatment of any asbestos claim, including a claim described 
     under subsection (e)(2), that requires future performance by 
     any party, insurer of such party, settlement administrator, 
     or escrow agent shall be superseded in its entirety by this 
     Act.
       (2) No force or effect.--Except as provided under paragraph 
     (3), any such agreement, understanding, or undertaking by any 
     such person or affiliated group shall be of no force or 
     effect, and no person shall have any rights or claims with 
     respect to any such agreement, understanding, or undertaking.
       (3) Exception.--
       (A) In general.--Except as provided in section 202(f), 
     nothing in this Act shall abrogate a binding and legally 
     enforceable written settlement agreement between any 
     defendant participant or its insurer and a specific named 
     plaintiff with respect to the settlement of an asbestos claim 
     of the plaintiff if--
       (i) before the date of enactment of this Act, the 
     settlement agreement was executed by--

       (I) the authorized legal representative acting on behalf of 
     the settling defendant or insurer, the settling defendant or 
     the settling insurer; and
       (II)(aa) the specific individual plaintiff, or the 
     individual's immediate relatives; or
       (bb) an authorized legal representative acting on behalf of 
     the plaintiff where the plaintiff is incapacitated and the 
     settlement agreement is signed by that authorized legal 
     representative;

       (ii) the settlement agreement contains an express 
     obligation by the settling defendant or settling insurer to 
     make a future direct monetary payment or payments in a fixed 
     amount or amounts to the individual plaintiff; and
       (iii) within 30 days after the date of enactment of this 
     Act, or such shorter time period specified in the settlement 
     agreement, the plaintiff has fulfilled all conditions to 
     payment under the settlement agreement.
       (B) Bankruptcy-related agreements.--The exception set forth 
     in this paragraph

[[Page S5380]]

     shall not apply to any bankruptcy-related agreement.
       (C) Collateral source.--Any settlement payment under this 
     section is a collateral source if the plaintiff seeks 
     recovery from the Fund.
       (D) Abrogation.--Nothing in subparagraph (A) shall abrogate 
     a settlement agreement otherwise satisfying the requirements 
     of that subparagraph if such settlement agreement expressly 
     anticipates the enactment of this Act and provides for the 
     effects of this Act.
       (E) Health care insurance or expenses settlements.--Nothing 
     in this Act shall abrogate or terminate an otherwise fully 
     enforceable settlement agreement which was executed before 
     the date of enactment of this Act directly by the settling 
     defendant or the settling insurer and a specific named 
     plaintiff to pay the health care insurance or health care 
     expenses of the plaintiff.
       (d) Exclusive Remedy.--
       (1) In general.--Except as provided under paragraph (2) and 
     section 106(f) of this Act and section 524(j)(3) of title 11, 
     United States Code, as amended by this Act, the remedies 
     provided under this Act shall be the exclusive remedy for any 
     asbestos claim, including any claim described in subsection 
     (e)(2), under any Federal or State law.
       (2) Civil actions at trial.--
       (A) In general.--This Act shall not apply to any asbestos 
     claim that--
       (i) is a civil action filed in a Federal or State court 
     (not including a filing in a bankruptcy court);
       (ii) is not part of a consolidation of actions or a class 
     action; and
       (iii) on the date of enactment of this Act--

       (I) in the case of a civil action which includes a jury 
     trial, is before the jury after its impaneling and 
     commencement of presentation of evidence, but before its 
     deliberations;
       (II) in the case of a civil action which includes a trial 
     in which a judge is the trier of fact, is at the presentation 
     of evidence at trial; or
       (III) a verdict, final order, or final judgment has been 
     entered by a trial court.

       (B) Nonapplicability.--This Act shall not apply to a civil 
     action described under subparagraph (A) throughout the final 
     disposition of the action.
       (e) Bar on Asbestos Claims.--
       (1) In general.--No asbestos claim (including any claim 
     described in paragraph (2)) may be pursued, and no pending 
     asbestos claim may be maintained, in any Federal or State 
     court, except as provided under subsection (d)(2) and section 
     106(f) of this Act and section 524(j)(3) of title 11, United 
     States Code, as amended by this Act.
       (2) Certain specified claims.--
       (A) In general.--Subject to section 404 (d) and (e)(3) of 
     this Act, no claim may be brought or pursued in any Federal 
     or State court or insurance receivership proceeding--
       (i) relating to any default, confessed or stipulated 
     judgment on an asbestos claim if the judgment debtor 
     expressly agreed, in writing or otherwise, not to contest the 
     entry of judgment against it and the plaintiff expressly 
     agreed, in writing or otherwise, to seek satisfaction of the 
     judgment only against insurers or in bankruptcy;
       (ii) relating to the defense, investigation, handling, 
     litigation, settlement, or payment of any asbestos claim by 
     any participant, including claims for bad faith or unfair or 
     deceptive claims handling or breach of any duties of good 
     faith; or
       (iii) arising out of or relating to the asbestos-related 
     injury of any individual and--

       (I) asserting any conspiracy, concert of action, aiding or 
     abetting, act, conduct, statement, misstatement, undertaking, 
     publication, omission, or failure to detect, speak, disclose, 
     publish, or warn relating to the presence or health effects 
     of asbestos or the use, sale, distribution, manufacture, 
     production, development, inspection, advertising, marketing, 
     or installation of asbestos; or
       (II) asserting any conspiracy, act, conduct, statement, 
     omission, or failure to detect, disclose, or warn relating to 
     the presence or health effects of asbestos or the use, sale, 
     distribution, manufacture, production, development, 
     inspection, advertising, marketing, or installation of 
     asbestos, asserted as or in a direct action against an 
     insurer or reinsurer based upon any theory, statutory, 
     contract, tort, or otherwise; or

       (iv) by any third party, and premised on any theory, 
     allegation, or cause of action, for reimbursement of 
     healthcare costs allegedly associated with the use of or 
     exposure to asbestos, whether such claim is asserted 
     directly, indirectly or derivatively.
       (B) Exceptions.--Subparagraph (A) (ii) and (iii) shall not 
     apply to claims against participants by persons--
       (i) with whom the participant is in privity of contract;
       (ii) who have received an assignment of insurance rights 
     not otherwise voided by this Act; or
       (iii) who are beneficiaries covered by the express terms of 
     a contract with that participant.
       (3) Preemption.--Any action asserting an asbestos claim 
     (including a claim described in paragraph (2)) in any Federal 
     or State court is preempted by this Act, except as provided 
     under subsection (d)(2) and section 106(f).
       (4) Dismissal.--
       (A) In general.--Except as provided under subsection 
     (d)(2), no judgment other than a judgment for dismissal may 
     be entered in any action asserting an asbestos claim 
     (including any claim described in paragraph (2)) in any 
     Federal or State court on or after the date of enactment of 
     this Act.
       (B) Dismissal on motion.--A court may dismiss any action 
     asserting an asbestos claim (including any claim described in 
     paragraph (2)) on--
       (i) motion by any party to such action; or
       (ii) its own motion.
       (C) Denial of motion.--If a court denies a motion to 
     dismiss under subparagraph (B)(i), it shall stay further 
     proceedings in any such action until final disposition of any 
     appeal taken under this Act.
       (D) Exception for pending claims in court.--
       (i) In general.--Except as provided under subsection (d)(2) 
     and clause (ii) of this subparagraph, an action asserting an 
     asbestos claim that is pending on the date of enactment of 
     this Act in any Federal or State court may not be dismissed 
     under subparagraph (A), but any stay shall continue in 
     effect, if the plaintiff (or the personal representative of 
     the plaintiff, if the plaintiff is deceased or incompetent) 
     in such action has filed a claim, or is still entitled under 
     section 113(b) to file a claim, with the Fund with respect to 
     the disease, condition, or injury forming the basis of such 
     action.
       (ii) Dismissal allowed if claim is adjudicated.--An action 
     exempt from dismissal under clause (i) shall be dismissed 
     if--

       (I) the plaintiff's claim under the Fund has been finally 
     adjudicated, and--

       (aa) the award, if any, to the plaintiff from the Fund has 
     been paid in whole or in part; or
       (bb) the plaintiff has been determined to be eligible for 
     medical monitoring;

       (II) the plaintiff's claim under the Fund has been finally 
     adjudicated and the claimant is not entitled to receive a 
     monetary award or medical monitoring under subtitle D of 
     title I;
       (III) the plaintiff's claim has been resolved and paid in 
     full under section 106(f);
       (IV) after the Administrator certifies to Congress that the 
     Fund has become operational and paying all valid asbestos 
     claims at a reasonable rate, the plaintiff's claim is pending 
     in any venue other than a venue described under section 
     405(h)(3); or
       (V) before the Administrator certifies to Congress that the 
     Fund has become operational and paying all valid asbestos 
     claims at a reasonable rate, the plaintiff's claim--

       (aa) is subject to section 106(f)(3); and
       (bb) would not be permitted to proceed in the venue in 
     which that claim is pending under such paragraph.
       (E) Notice.--A claimant shall provide notice to the 
     Administrator of any pending action involving an asbestos 
     claim in any Federal or State court in which such claimant is 
     a plaintiff. The Administrator shall send notice to the 
     appropriate Federal or State court of any adjudication of any 
     claim with the Fund filed by a plaintiff in an action that 
     has been stayed under subparagraph (D)(i).
       (F) Rule of construction.--Nothing in this paragraph shall 
     be construed to limit dismissal, at any time, of a claim 
     pending in Federal or State court for reasons independent of 
     the enactment of this Act.
       (5) Removal.--
       (A) In general.--If an action in any State court under 
     paragraph (3) is preempted, barred, or otherwise precluded 
     under this Act, and not dismissed, or if an order entered 
     after the date of enactment of this Act purporting to enter 
     judgment or deny review is not rescinded and replaced with an 
     order of dismissal within 30 days after the filing of a 
     motion by any party to the action advising the court of the 
     provisions of this Act, any party may remove the case to the 
     district court of the United States for the district in which 
     such action is pending.
       (B) Time limits.--For actions originally filed after the 
     date of enactment of this Act, the notice of removal shall be 
     filed within the time limits specified in section 1441(b) of 
     title 28, United States Code.
       (C) Procedures.--The procedures for removal and proceedings 
     after removal shall be in accordance with sections 1446 
     through 1450 of title 28, United States Code, except as may 
     be necessary to accommodate removal of any actions pending 
     (including on appeal) on the date of enactment of this Act.
       (D) Review of remand orders.--
       (i) In general.--Section 1447 of title 28, United States 
     Code, shall apply to any removal of a case under this 
     section, except that notwithstanding subsection (d) of that 
     section, a court of appeals may accept an appeal from an 
     order of a district court granting or denying a motion to 
     remand an action to the State court from which it was removed 
     if application is made to the court of appeals not less than 
     7 days after entry of the order.
       (ii) Time period for judgment.--If the court of appeals 
     accepts an appeal under clause (i), the court shall complete 
     all action on such appeal, including rendering judgment, not 
     later than 60 days after the date on which such appeal was 
     filed, unless an extension is granted under clause (iii).
       (iii) Extension of time period.--The court of appeals may 
     grant an extension of the 60-day period described in clause 
     (ii) if--

       (I) all parties to the proceeding agree to such extension, 
     for any period of time; or
       (II) such extension is for good cause shown and in the 
     interests of justice, for a period not to exceed 10 days.

       (iv) Denial of appeal.--If a final judgment on the appeal 
     under clause (i) is not issued

[[Page S5381]]

     before the end of the period described in clause (ii), 
     including any extension under clause (iii), the appeal shall 
     be denied.
       (E) Jurisdiction.--The jurisdiction of the district court 
     shall be limited to--
       (i) determining whether removal was proper; and
       (ii) determining, based on the evidentiary record, whether 
     the claim presented is preempted, barred, or otherwise 
     precluded under this Act.
       (6) Credits.--
       (A) In general.--If, notwithstanding the express intent of 
     Congress stated in this section, any court finally determines 
     for any reason that an asbestos claim, including a claim 
     described under paragraph (2), is not barred under this 
     subsection and is not subject to the exclusive remedy or 
     preemption provisions of this section, then any participant 
     required to satisfy a final judgment executed with respect to 
     any such claim may elect to receive a credit against any 
     assessment owed to the Fund equal to the amount of the 
     payment made with respect to such executed judgment.
       (B) Requirements.--The Administrator shall require 
     participants seeking credit under this paragraph to 
     demonstrate that the participant--
       (i) timely pursued all available remedies, including 
     remedies available under this paragraph to obtain dismissal 
     of the claim; and
       (ii) notified the Administrator at least 20 days before the 
     expiration of any period within which to appeal the denial of 
     a motion to dismiss based on this section.
       (C) Information.--The Administrator may require a 
     participant seeking credit under this paragraph to furnish 
     such further information as is necessary and appropriate to 
     establish eligibility for, and the amount of, the credit.
       (D) Intervention.--The Administrator may intervene in any 
     action in which a credit may be due under this paragraph.

     SEC. 404. EFFECT ON INSURANCE AND REINSURANCE CONTRACTS.

       (a) Erosion of Insurance Coverage Limits.--
       (1) Definitions.--In this section, the following 
     definitions shall apply:
       (A) Deemed erosion amount.--The term ``deemed erosion 
     amount'' means the amount of erosion deemed to occur at 
     enactment under paragraph (2).
       (B) Early sunset.--The term ``early sunset'' means an event 
     causing termination of the program under section 405(g) which 
     relieves the insurer participants of paying some portion of 
     the aggregate payment level of $46,025,000,000 required under 
     section 212(a)(2)(A).
       (C) Earned erosion amount.--The term ``earned erosion 
     amount'' means, in the event of any early sunset under 
     section 405(g), the percentage, as set forth in the following 
     schedule, depending on the year in which the defendant 
     participants' funding obligations end, of those amounts 
     which, at the time of the early sunset, a defendant 
     participant has paid to the fund and remains obligated to pay 
     into the fund.

  Year After Enactment In Which Defendant Participant's Funding 
  Obligation Ends:                               Applicable Percentage:
  2.........................................................67.06  ....

  3.........................................................86.72  ....

  4.........................................................96.55  ....

  5........................................................102.45  ....

  6.........................................................90.12  ....

  7.........................................................81.32  ....

  8.........................................................74.71  ....

  9.........................................................69.58  ....

  10........................................................65.47  ....

  11........................................................62.11  ....

  12........................................................59.31  ....

  13........................................................56.94  ....

  14........................................................54.90  ....

  15........................................................53.14  ....

  16........................................................51.60  ....

  17........................................................50.24  ....

  18........................................................49.03  ....

  19........................................................47.95  ....

  20........................................................46.98  ....

  21........................................................46.10  ....

  22........................................................45.30  ....

  23........................................................44.57  ....

  24........................................................43.90  ....

  25........................................................43.28  ....

  26........................................................42.71  ....

  27........................................................42.18  ....

  28........................................................40.82  ....

  29........................................................39.42  ....

       (D) Remaining aggregate products limits.--The term 
     ``remaining aggregate products limits'' means aggregate 
     limits that apply to insurance coverage granted under the 
     ``products hazard'', ``completed operations hazard'', or 
     ``Products--Completed Operations Liability'' in any 
     comprehensive general liability policy issued between 
     calendar years 1940 and 1986 to cover injury which occurs in 
     any State, as reduced by--
       (i) any existing impairment of such aggregate limits as of 
     the date of enactment of this Act; and
       (ii) the resolution of claims for reimbursement or coverage 
     of liability or paid or incurred loss for which notice was 
     provided to the insurer before the date of enactment of this 
     Act.
       (E) Scheduled payment amounts.--The term ``scheduled 
     payment amounts'' means the future payment obligation to the 
     Fund under this Act from a defendant participant in the 
     amount established under sections 203 and 204.
       (F) Unearned erosion amount.--The term ``unearned erosion 
     amount'' means, in the event of any early sunset under 
     section 405(g), the difference between the deemed erosion 
     amount and the earned erosion amount.
       (2) Quantum and timing of erosion.--
       (A) Erosion upon enactment.--The collective payment 
     obligations to the Fund of the insurer and reinsurer 
     participants as assessed by the Administrator shall be deemed 
     as of the date of enactment of this Act to erode remaining 
     aggregate products limits available to a defendant 
     participant only in an amount of 38.1 percent of each 
     defendant participant's scheduled payment amount.
       (B) No assertion of claim.--No insurer or reinsurer may 
     assert any claim against a defendant participant or captive 
     insurer for insurance, reinsurance, payment of a deductible, 
     or retrospective premium adjustment arising out of that 
     insurer's or reinsurer's payments to the Fund or the erosion 
     deemed to occur under this section.
       (C) Policies without certain limits or with exclusion.--
     Except as provided under subparagraph (E), nothing in this 
     section shall require or permit the erosion of any insurance 
     policy or limit that does not contain an aggregate products 
     limit, or that contains an asbestos exclusion.
       (D) Treatment of consolidation election.--If an affiliated 
     group elects consolidation as provided in section 204(f), the 
     total erosion of limits for the affiliated group under 
     paragraph (2)(A) shall not exceed 38.1 percent of the 
     scheduled payment amount of the single payment obligation for 
     the entire affiliated group. The total erosion of limits for 
     any individual defendant participant in the affiliated group 
     shall not exceed its individual share of 38.1 percent of the 
     affiliated group's scheduled payment amount, as measured by 
     the individual defendant participant's percentage share of 
     the affiliated group's prior asbestos expenditures.
       (E) Rule of construction.--Notwithstanding any other 
     provision of this section, nothing in this Act shall be 
     deemed to erode remaining aggregate products limits of a 
     defendant participant that can demonstrate by a preponderance 
     of the evidence that 75 percent of its prior asbestos 
     expenditures were made in defense or satisfaction of asbestos 
     claims alleging bodily injury arising exclusively from the 
     exposure to asbestos at premises owned, rented, or controlled 
     by the defendant participant (a ``premises defendant''). In 
     calculating such percentage, where expenditures were made in 
     defense or satisfaction of asbestos claims alleging bodily 
     injury due to exposure to the defendant participant's 
     products and to asbestos at premises owned, rented, or 
     controlled by the defendant participant, half of such 
     expenditures shall be deemed to be for such premises 
     exposures. If a defendant participant establishes itself as a 
     premises defendant, 75 percent of the payments by such 
     defendant participant shall erode coverage limits, if any, 
     applicable to premises liabilities under applicable law.
       (3) Method of erosion.--
       (A) Allocation.--The amount of erosion allocated to each 
     defendant participant shall be allocated among periods in 
     which policies with remaining aggregate product limits are 
     available to that defendant participant pro rata by policy 
     period, in ascending order by attachment point.
       (B) Other erosion methods.--
       (i) In general.--Notwithstanding subparagraph (A), the 
     method of erosion of any remaining aggregate products limits 
     which are subject to--

       (I) a coverage-in-place or settlement agreement between a 
     defendant participant and 1 or more insurance participants as 
     of the date of enactment; or
       (II) a final and nonappealable judgment as of the date of 
     enactment or resulting from a claim for coverage or 
     reimbursement pending as of such date, shall be as specified 
     in such agreement or judgment with regard to erosion 
     applicable to such insurance participants' policies.

       (ii) Remaining limits.--To the extent that a final 
     nonappealable judgment or settlement agreement to which an 
     insurer participant and a defendant participant are parties 
     in effect as of the date of enactment of this Act 
     extinguished a defendant participant's right to seek coverage 
     for asbestos claims under an insurer participant's policies, 
     any remaining limits in such policies shall not be considered 
     to be remaining aggregate products limits under subsection 
     (a)(1)(A).
       (4) Restoration of aggregate products limits upon early 
     sunset.--
       (A) Restoration.--In the event of an early sunset, any 
     unearned erosion amount will be deemed restored as aggregate 
     products limits available to a defendant participant as of 
     the date of enactment.
       (B) Method of restoration.--The unearned erosion amount 
     will be deemed restored to each defendant participant's 
     policies in such a manner that the last limits that were 
     deemed eroded at enactment under this subsection are deemed 
     to be the first limits restored upon early sunset.
       (C) Tolling of coverage claims.--In the event of an early 
     sunset, the applicable statute of limitations and contractual 
     provisions for the filing of claims under any insurance 
     policy with restored aggregate products limits shall be 
     deemed tolled after the date of

[[Page S5382]]

     enactment through the date 6 months after the date of early 
     sunset.
       (5) Payments by defendant participant.--Payments made by a 
     defendant participant shall be deemed to erode, exhaust, or 
     otherwise satisfy applicable self-insured retentions, 
     deductibles, retrospectively rated premiums, and limits 
     issued by nonparticipating insolvent or captive insurance 
     companies. Reduction of remaining aggregate limits under this 
     subsection shall not limit the right of a defendant 
     participant to collect from any insurer not a participant.
       (6) Effect on other insurance claims.--Other than as 
     specified in this subsection, this Act does not alter, 
     change, modify, or affect insurance for claims other than 
     asbestos claims.
       (b) Dispute Resolution Procedure.--
       (1) Arbitration.--The parties to a dispute regarding the 
     erosion of insurance coverage limits under this section may 
     agree in writing to settle such dispute by arbitration. Any 
     such provision or agreement shall be valid, irrevocable, and 
     enforceable, except for any grounds that exist at law or in 
     equity for revocation of a contract.
       (2) Title 9, united states code.--Arbitration of such 
     disputes, awards by arbitrators, and confirmation of awards 
     shall be governed by title 9, United States Code, to the 
     extent such title is not inconsistent with this section. In 
     any such arbitration proceeding, the erosion principles 
     provided for under this section shall be binding on the 
     arbitrator, unless the parties agree to the contrary.
       (3) Final and binding award.--An award by an arbitrator 
     shall be final and binding between the parties to the 
     arbitration, but shall have no force or effect on any other 
     person. The parties to an arbitration may agree that in the 
     event a policy which is the subject matter of an award is 
     subsequently determined to be eroded in a manner different 
     from the manner determined by the arbitration in a judgment 
     rendered by a court of competent jurisdiction from which no 
     appeal can or has been taken, such arbitration award may be 
     modified by any court of competent jurisdiction upon 
     application by any party to the arbitration. Any such 
     modification shall govern the rights and obligations between 
     such parties after the date of such modification.
       (c) Effect on Nonparticipants.--
       (1) In general.--No insurance company or reinsurance 
     company that is not a participant, other than a captive 
     insurer, shall be entitled to claim that payments to the Fund 
     erode, exhaust, or otherwise limit the nonparticipant's 
     insurance or reinsurance obligations.
       (2) Other claims.--Nothing in this Act shall preclude a 
     participant from pursuing any claim for insurance or 
     reinsurance from any person that is not a participant other 
     than a captive insurer.
       (d) Finite Risk Policies Not Affected.--
       (1) In general.--Notwithstanding any other provision of 
     this Act, except subject to section 212(a)(1)(D), this Act 
     shall not alter, affect or impair any rights or obligations 
     of--
       (A) any party to an insurance contract that expressly 
     provides coverage for governmental charges or assessments 
     imposed to replace insurance or reinsurance liabilities in 
     effect on the date of enactment of this Act; or
       (B) subject to paragraph (2), any person with respect to 
     any insurance purchased by a participant after December 31, 
     1990, that expressly (but not necessarily exclusively) 
     provides coverage for asbestos liabilities, including those 
     policies commonly referred to as ``finite risk'' policies.
       (2) Limitation.--No person may assert that any amounts paid 
     to the Fund in accordance with this Act are covered by any 
     policy described under paragraph (1)(B) purchased by a 
     defendant participant, unless such policy specifically 
     provides coverage for required payments to a Federal trust 
     fund established by a Federal statute to resolve asbestos 
     injury claims.
       (e) Effect on Certain Insurance and Reinsurance Claims.--
       (1) No coverage for fund assessments.--Subject to section 
     212(a)(1)(D), no participant or captive insurer may pursue an 
     insurance or reinsurance claim against another participant or 
     captive insurer for payments to the Fund required under this 
     Act, except under a written agreement specifically providing 
     insurance, reinsurance, or other reimbursement for required 
     payments to a Federal trust fund established by a Federal 
     statute to resolve asbestos injury claims or, where 
     applicable, under finite risk policies under subsection (d).
       (2) Certain insurance assignments voided.--Any assignment 
     of any rights to insurance coverage for asbestos claims to 
     any person who has asserted an asbestos claim before the date 
     of enactment of this Act, or to any trust, person, or other 
     entity not part of an affiliated group as defined in section 
     201(1) of this Act established or appointed for the purpose 
     of paying asbestos claims which were asserted before such 
     date of enactment, or by any Tier I defendant participant, 
     before any sunset of this Act, shall be null and void. This 
     subsection shall not void or affect in any way any 
     assignments of rights to insurance coverage other than to 
     asbestos claimants or to trusts, persons, or other entities 
     not part of an affiliated group as defined in section 201(1) 
     of this Act established or appointed for the purpose of 
     paying asbestos claims, or by Tier I defendant participants.
       (3) Insurance claims preserved.--Notwithstanding any other 
     provision of this Act, this Act shall not alter, affect, or 
     impair any rights or obligations of any person with respect 
     to any insurance or reinsurance for amounts that any person 
     pays, has paid, or becomes legally obligated to pay in 
     respect of asbestos or other claims, including claims filed, 
     pursued, or revived under section 405(h), except to the 
     extent that--
       (A) such claims are preempted, barred, or superseded by 
     section 403;
       (B) any such rights or obligations of such person with 
     respect to insurance or reinsurance are prohibited by 
     paragraph (1) or (2) of subsection (e); or
       (C) the limits of insurance otherwise available to such 
     participant in respect of asbestos claims are deemed to be 
     eroded under subsection (a).

     SEC. 405. ANNUAL REPORT OF THE ADMINISTRATOR AND SUNSET OF 
                   THE ACT.

       (a) In General.--The Administrator shall submit an annual 
     report to the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate and 
     the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of 
     Representatives on the operation of the Asbestos Injury 
     Claims Resolution Fund within 6 months after the close of 
     each fiscal year.
       (b) Contents of Report.--The annual report submitted under 
     this subsection shall include an analysis of--
       (1) the claims experience of the program during the most 
     recent fiscal year, including--
       (A) the number of claims made to the Office and a 
     description of the types of medical diagnoses and asbestos 
     exposures underlying those claims;
       (B) the number of claims denied by the Office and a 
     description of the types of medical diagnoses and asbestos 
     exposures underlying those claims, and a general description 
     of the reasons for their denial;
       (C) a summary of the eligibility determinations made by the 
     Office under section 114;
       (D) a summary of the awards made from the Fund, including 
     the amount of the awards; and
       (E) for each disease level, a statement of the percentage 
     of asbestos claimants who filed claims during the prior 
     calendar year and were determined to be eligible to receive 
     compensation under this Act, who have received the 
     compensation to which such claimants are entitled according 
     to section 131;
       (2) the administrative performance of the program, 
     including--
       (A) the performance of the program in meeting the time 
     limits prescribed by law and an analysis of the reasons for 
     any systemic delays;
       (B) any backlogs of claims that may exist and an 
     explanation of the reasons for such backlogs;
       (C) the costs to the Fund of administering the program; and
       (D) any other significant factors bearing on the efficiency 
     of the program;
       (3) the financial condition of the Fund, including--
       (A) statements of the Fund's revenues, expenses, assets, 
     and liabilities;
       (B) the identity of all participants, the funding 
     allocations of each participant, and the total amounts of all 
     payments to the Fund;
       (C) a list of all financial hardship or inequity 
     adjustments applied for during the fiscal year, and the 
     adjustments that were made during the fiscal year;
       (D) a statement of the investments of the Fund; and
       (E) a statement of the borrowings of the Fund;
       (4) the financial prospects of the Fund, including--
       (A) an estimate of the number and types of claims, the 
     amount of awards, and the participant payment obligations for 
     the next fiscal year;
       (B) an analysis of the financial condition of the Fund, 
     including an estimation of the Fund's ability to pay claims 
     for the subsequent 5 years in full and over the predicted 
     lifetime of the program as and when required, an evaluation 
     of the Fund's ability to retire its existing debt and assume 
     additional debt, and an evaluation of the Fund's ability to 
     satisfy other obligations under the program; and
       (C) a report on any changes in projections made in earlier 
     annual reports or sunset analyses regarding the Fund's 
     ability to meet its financial obligations;
       (5) a summary of any legal actions brought or penalties 
     imposed under section 223, any referrals made to law 
     enforcement authorities under section 408 (a) and (b), and 
     any contributions to the Fund collected under section 408(e);
       (6) any recommendations from the Advisory Committee on 
     Asbestos Disease Compensation and the Medical Advisory 
     Committee of the Fund to improve the diagnostic, exposure, 
     and medical criteria so as to pay those claimants who suffer 
     from diseases or conditions for which exposure to asbestos 
     was a substantial contributing factor;
       (7) a summary of the results of audits conducted under 
     section 115; and
       (8) a summary of prosecutions under section 1348 of title 
     18, United States Code (as added by this Act).
       (c) Certification.--The Administrator shall certify in the 
     annual report required under subsection (a) whether, in the 
     best judgment of the Administrator, the Fund will have 
     sufficient resources for the fiscal year in which the report 
     is issued to make all required payments--

[[Page S5383]]

       (1) with respect to all claims determined eligible for 
     compensation that have been filed and that the Administrator 
     projects will be filed with the Office for the fiscal year; 
     and
       (2) to satisfy the Fund's debt repayment obligation, 
     administrative costs, and other financial obligations.
       (d) Claims Analysis and Verification of Unanticipated 
     Claims.--
       (1) In general.--If the Administrator concludes, on the 
     basis of the annual report submitted under this section, 
     that--
       (A) the average number of claims that qualify for 
     compensation under a claim level or designation exceeds 125 
     percent of the number of claims expected to qualify for 
     compensation under that claim level or designation in the 
     most recent Congressional Budget Office estimate of asbestos-
     injury claims for any 3-year period, the Administrator shall 
     conduct a review of a statistically significant sample of 
     claims qualifying for compensation under the appropriate 
     claim level or designation; or
       (B) the average number of claims that qualify for 
     compensation under a claim level or designation is less than 
     75 percent of the number of claims expected to qualify for 
     compensation under that claim level or designation in the 
     most recent Congressional Budget Office estimate of asbestos-
     injury claims for any 3-year period, the Administrator shall 
     conduct a review of a statistically significant sample of 
     claims deemed ineligible for compensation under the 
     appropriate claim level or designation.
       (2) Determinations.--The Administrator shall examine the 
     best available medical evidence and any recommendation made 
     under subsection (b)(5) in order to determine which 1 or more 
     of the following is true:
       (A) Without a significant number of exceptions, all of the 
     claimants who qualified for compensation under the claim 
     level or designation suffer from an injury or disease for 
     which exposure to asbestos was a substantial contributing 
     factor.
       (B) A significant number of claimants who qualified for 
     compensation under the claim level or designation do not 
     suffer from an injury or disease for which exposure to 
     asbestos was a substantial contributing factor.
       (C) A significant number of claimants who were denied 
     compensation under the claim level of designation did suffer 
     from an injury or disease for which exposure to asbestos was 
     a substantial contributing factor.
       (D) The Congressional Budget Office projections 
     underestimated or overestimated the actual number of persons 
     who suffer from an injury or disease for which exposure to 
     asbestos was a substantial contributing factor.
       (3) Recommendations concerning claims criteria.--If the 
     Administrator determines that a significant number of the 
     claimants who qualified for compensation under the claim 
     level under review do not suffer from an injury or disease 
     for which exposure to asbestos was a substantial contributing 
     factor, or that a significant number of the claimants who 
     were denied compensation under the claim level under review 
     suffered from an injury or disease for which exposure to 
     asbestos was a substantial contributing factor, the 
     Administrator shall recommend to Congress, under subsection 
     (f), changes to the compensation criteria in order to ensure 
     that the Fund provides compensation for injury or disease for 
     which exposure to asbestos was a substantial contributing 
     factor, but does not provide compensation to claimants who do 
     not suffer from an injury or disease for which asbestos 
     exposure was a substantial contributing factor.
       (e) Recommendations of Administrator and Advisory 
     Committee.--
       (1) Referral.--If the Administrator recommends changes to 
     this Act under subsection (d), the recommendations and 
     accompanying analysis shall be referred to the Advisory 
     Committee on Asbestos Disease Compensation established under 
     section 102 (in this subsection referred to as the ``Advisory 
     Committee'').
       (2) Advisory committee recommendations.--The Advisory 
     Committee shall hold expedited public hearings on the 
     alternatives and recommendations of the Administrator and 
     make its own recommendations for reform of the program under 
     titles I and II.
       (3) Transmittal to congress.--Not later than 90 days after 
     receiving the recommendations of the Administrator, the 
     Advisory Committee shall transmit the recommendations of the 
     Administrator and the recommendations of the Advisory 
     Committee to the Committee on the Judiciary of the Senate and 
     the Committee on the Judiciary of the House of 
     Representatives.
       (f) Shortfall Analysis.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Analysis.--If the Administrator concludes, at any time, 
     that the Fund may not be able to pay claims as such claims 
     become due at any time within the next 5 years and to satisfy 
     its other obligations, the Administrator shall prepare an 
     analysis of the reasons for the situation, an estimation of 
     when the Fund will no longer be able to pay claims as such 
     claims become due, a description of the range of reasonable 
     alternatives for responding to the situation, and a 
     recommendation as to which alternative best serves the 
     interest of claimants and the public. The report may include 
     a description of changes in the diagnostic, exposure, or 
     medical criteria of section 121 that the Administrator 
     believes may be necessary to protect the Fund. The 
     Administrator shall submit such analysis to the Committee on 
     the Judiciary of the Senate and the Committee on the 
     Judiciary of the House of Representatives. Any 
     recommendations made by the Administrator for changes to the 
     program shall, in addition, be referred to the Advisory 
     Committee on Asbestos Disease Compensation established under 
     section 102 for review.
       (B) Range of alternatives.--The range of alternatives under 
     subparagraph (A) may include--
       (i) termination of the program set forth in titles I and II 
     of this Act in its entirety;
       (ii) reform of the program set forth in titles I and II of 
     this Act (including changes in the diagnostic, exposure, or 
     medical criteria, changes in the enforcement or application 
     of those criteria, enhancement of enforcement authority, 
     changes in the timing of payments, changes in contributions 
     by defendant participants, insurer participants (or both such 
     participants), or changes in award values); or
       (iii) any measure that the Administrator considers 
     appropriate.
       (C) Insurer shortfall assessments.--Beginning in year 6 of 
     the life of the Fund, if the Administrator determines that a 
     shortfall in payment of the annual amounts required to be 
     paid by insurer participants under section 212(a)(3)(C) is 
     the substantial factor that would cause the Administrator to 
     recommend the termination of this Act under subsection (g), 
     then the Administrator may impose shortfall assessments on 
     insurer participants in addition to the payments imposed 
     under section 212, except that the Administrator shall not 
     impose such assessments if the additional amounts would not 
     be sufficient to permit the Administrator to avoid 
     recommending termination of this Act. During any given year, 
     the total of such shortfall assessments shall not exceed the 
     amount by which, during the prior year, total payments by 
     insurer participants fell short of the aggregate amounts 
     required to be paid under section 212(a)(3)(C). Shortfall 
     assessments shall be allocated among insurer participants 
     using the methodology adopted by the Asbestos Insurers 
     Commission under section 212(a)(1)(B).
       (2) Considerations.--In formulating recommendations, the 
     Administrator shall take into account the reasons for any 
     shortfall, actual or projected, which may include--
       (A) financial factors, including return on investments, 
     borrowing capacity, interest rates, ability to collect 
     contributions, and other relevant factors;
       (B) the operation of the Fund generally, including 
     administration of the claims processing, the ability of the 
     Administrator to collect contributions from participants, 
     potential problems of fraud, the adequacy of the criteria to 
     rule out idiopathic mesothelioma, and inadequate flexibility 
     to extend the timing of payments;
       (C) the appropriateness of the diagnostic, exposure, and 
     medical criteria, including the adequacy of the criteria to 
     rule out idiopathic mesothelioma;
       (D) the actual incidence of asbestos-related diseases, 
     including mesothelioma, based on epidemiological studies and 
     other relevant data;
       (E) compensation of diseases with alternative causes; and
       (F) other factors that the Administrator considers 
     relevant.
       (3) Recommendation of termination.--Any recommendation of 
     termination should include a plan for winding up the affairs 
     of the Fund (and the program generally) within a defined 
     period, including paying in full all claims resolved at the 
     time the report is prepared. Any plan under this paragraph 
     shall provide for priority in payment to the claimants with 
     the most serious illnesses.
       (4) Resolved claims.--For purposes of this section, a claim 
     shall be deemed resolved when the Administrator has 
     determined the amount of the award due the claimant, and 
     either the claimant has waived judicial review or the time 
     for judicial review has expired.
       (g) Sunset of Act.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Termination.--Subject to paragraph (4), titles I 
     (except subtitle A) and II and sections 403 and 404(e)(2) 
     shall terminate as provided under paragraph (2), if--
       (i) the Administrator has begun the processing of claims; 
     and
       (ii) as part of the review conducted to prepare an annual 
     report under this section, the Chief Financial Officer of the 
     Department of Labor, giving due consideration to the audit 
     conducted under subsection (h), determines that if any 
     additional claims are resolved, the Fund will not have 
     sufficient nontaxpayer resources and borrowing authorized 
     under section 221 when needed to pay 100 percent of all 
     resolved claims while also meeting all other obligations of 
     the Fund under this Act, including the payment of--

       (I) debt repayment obligations; and
       (II) remaining obligations to the asbestos trust of a 
     debtor and the class action trust.

       (B) Remaining obligations.--For purposes of subparagraph 
     (A)(ii)(II), the remaining obligations to the asbestos trust 
     of the debtor and the class action trust shall be determined 
     by multiplying the amount of assets transferred to the Fund 
     by such debtor or class action trust by the applicable 
     percentage set forth in the following schedule depending on 
     the year in which a termination shall take effect under 
     paragraph (2). The applicable percentage shall be adjusted 
     between years by quarter-annual increments.


[[Page S5384]]


  Year After Enactment in Which
  the Termination is Effective                   Applicable Percentage:
  1........................................................100.00  ....

  2.........................................................93.95  ....

  3.........................................................87.98  ....

  4.........................................................82.40  ....

  5.........................................................76.97  ....

  6.........................................................71.66  ....

  7.........................................................66.50  ....

  8.........................................................61.48  ....

  9.........................................................56.61  ....

  10........................................................52.01  ....

  11........................................................47.65  ....

  12........................................................43.52  ....

  13........................................................39.62  ....

  14........................................................35.96  ....

  15........................................................32.55  ....

  16........................................................29.36  ....

  17........................................................26.39  ....

  18........................................................23.65  ....

  19........................................................21.11  ....

  20........................................................18.76  ....

  21........................................................16.62  ....

  22........................................................14.66  ....

  23........................................................12.86  ....

  24........................................................11.24  ....

  25.........................................................9.78  ....

  26.........................................................8.48  ....

  27.........................................................7.32  ....

  28.........................................................6.29  ....

  29.........................................................5.37  ....

  30.........................................................4.55  ....

  31.........................................................3.83  ....

  32.........................................................3.20  ....

  33.........................................................2.66  ....

  34.........................................................2.18  ....

  35.........................................................1.77  ....

  36.........................................................1.42  ....

  37.........................................................1.13  ....

  38.........................................................0.89  ....

  39.........................................................0.70  ....

  40.........................................................0.54  ....

  41.........................................................0.40  ....

  42.........................................................0.29  ....

  43.........................................................0.19  ....

  44.........................................................0.12  ....

  45.........................................................0.05  ....

  46 and thereafter..........................................0.00  ....

       (2) Effective date of termination.--A termination under 
     paragraph (1) shall take effect 180 days after the date of a 
     determination of the Administrator under paragraph (1) and 
     shall apply to all asbestos claims that have not been 
     resolved by the Fund as of the date of the determination.
       (3) Resolved claims.--If a termination takes effect under 
     this subsection, all resolved claims shall be paid in full by 
     the Fund.
       (4) Extinguished claims.--A claim that is extinguished 
     under the statute of limitations provisions in section 113(b) 
     is not revived at the time of sunset under this subsection.
       (5) Continued funding.--If a termination takes effect under 
     this subsection, participants will still be required to make 
     payments as provided under subtitles A and B of title II. If 
     the full amount of payments required by title II is not 
     necessary for the Fund to pay claims that have been resolved 
     as of the date of termination, pay the Fund's debt and 
     obligations to the asbestos trusts and class action trust, 
     and support the Fund's continued operation as needed to pay 
     such claims, debt, and obligations, the Administrator may 
     reduce such payments. Any such reductions shall be allocated 
     among participants in approximately the same proportion as 
     the liability under subtitles A and B of title II.
       (6) Sunset claims.--
       (A) Definitions.--In this paragraph--
       (i) the term ``sunset claims'' means claims filed with the 
     Fund, but not yet resolved, when this Act has terminated; and
       (ii) the term ``sunset claimants'' means persons asserting 
     sunset claims.
       (B) In general.--If a termination takes effect under this 
     subsection, the applicable statute of limitations for the 
     filing of sunset claims under subsection (h) shall be tolled 
     for any past or pending sunset claimants while such claimants 
     were pursuing claims filed under this Act. For those 
     claimants who decide to pursue a sunset claim in accordance 
     with subsection (h), the applicable statute of limitations 
     shall apply, except that claimants who filed a claim against 
     the Fund under this Act before the date of termination shall 
     have 2 years after the date of termination to file a sunset 
     claim in accordance with subsection (h).
       (7) Establishment of master asbestos trust.--
       (A) Creation.--Within 120 days after the determination of 
     the Administrator under paragraph (1), the Administrator 
     shall create a trust to be the successor to the asbestos 
     trusts and any class action trust, to receive funds equal to 
     the amount determined by the Administrator to be necessary to 
     pay the remaining aggregate obligations to the asbestos 
     trusts and any class action trust under paragraph (1) 
     (A)(iii) and (B), and to use such funds for the exclusive 
     purpose of providing benefits in accordance with the terms of 
     this paragraph to persons who would have held valid asbestos 
     claims against the asbestos trusts or any class action trust 
     had this Act not been enacted and to otherwise defray the 
     reasonable expenses of administering the master trust.
       (B) Jurisdiction.--The United States District Court for the 
     District of Columbia shall have exclusive jurisdiction, 
     without regard to amount in controversy, over the master 
     trust and all civil actions involving the application and 
     construction of this subparagraph and the trust documents, 
     including any action for the payment of benefits due under 
     the terms of this subparagraph after exhaustion of trust 
     remedies and any action for breach of fiduciary duty on the 
     part of any fiduciary of the master trust.
       (C) Trustees.--The district court shall appoint, upon 
     petition by the Administrator after consultation with the 
     Advisory Committee, 3 trustees to administer the master 
     trust. Each trustee, and any successor to each trustee, must 
     be independent, free of any adverse interest and have 
     sufficient qualifications and experience to fulfill the 
     responsibilities described in this section.
       (D) Trust advisory committee.--The Administrator, in 
     consultation with the Advisory Committee, shall appoint 3 
     persons to represent the interests of trust beneficiaries as 
     members of a trust advisory committee to consult with and 
     advise the trustees respecting the administration of the 
     master trust and resolution of asbestos claims. At least 1 of 
     the members of the trust advisory committee shall be selected 
     from among individuals recommended by recognized national 
     labor federations, and at least 1 of the members of the trust 
     advisory committee shall be experienced in representing the 
     interests of trust beneficiaries.
       (E) Legal representative.--The district court shall 
     appoint, upon petition by the Administrator after 
     consultation with the Advisory Committee, a legal 
     representative of persons who may in the future have claims 
     against the master trust for the purpose of protecting the 
     rights of such persons respecting the master trust and 
     consulting with and advising the trustees respecting the 
     administration of the master trust and resolution of asbestos 
     claims. The legal representative shall have standing to 
     appear and be heard as a representative of the future 
     asbestos claimants in any civil action before the district 
     court relating to the master trust. The legal representative 
     shall not represent the interests of any person who has filed 
     a claim for benefits against the master trust with respect to 
     such claim.
       (F) Trust documents.--The Administrator, in consultation 
     with the Advisory Committee, shall create such trust 
     documents as may be necessary to create and govern the 
     operations of the master trust. The trust documents shall 
     contain provisions that--
       (i) address the payment of compensation to and 
     reimbursement of necessary and reasonable expenses of the 
     trustees, trust advisory committee members and legal 
     representative, and appointment of successors to such 
     persons, subject to approval by the district court in the 
     case of successors to the trustees and legal representative; 
     and
       (ii) provide for the master trust's obligation to defend 
     and indemnify the Administrator, trustees, members of the 
     trust advisory committee, legal representative and their 
     respective successors against and from legal actions and 
     related losses to the extent that a corporation is permitted 
     under the laws of Delaware to defend and indemnify its 
     officers and directors.
       (G) Duty of trustees.--The trustees shall administer the 
     master trust in accordance with the terms of this 
     subparagraph and the Trust Documents for the exclusive 
     purpose of providing benefits to persons with valid claims 
     against the master trust and otherwise defraying the 
     reasonable expenses of administering the master trust, and 
     shall manage and invest the assets of the trust with the 
     care, skill, prudence, and diligence, under like 
     circumstances prevailing at the time, that a prudent person 
     acting in like capacity and manner would use.
       (H) Claims resolution procedures.--The trustees, in 
     consultation with the trust advisory committee and the legal 
     representative, shall adopt claims resolution procedures that 
     provide for fair and expeditious payment of benefits to all 
     persons described in subparagraph (A). The claims resolution 
     procedures adopted and implemented by the trustees shall 
     contain--
       (i) pro rata distributions of award amounts that are 
     subject to adjustment, if necessary, based on periodic 
     evaluations of the value of the master trust's assets and 
     estimates of the numbers and values of present and future 
     asbestos claims for benefits that may be awarded by the 
     master trust and other mechanisms that provide reasonable 
     assurance that the master trust will value, and be in a 
     financial position to pay, similarly situated asbestos claims 
     presented to it that involve similar diseases in 
     substantially the same manner;
       (ii) proof requirements, claim submission procedures, and 
     claim evaluation and allowance procedures that provide for 
     expeditious filing and evaluation of all asbestos claims 
     submitted to the master trust;
       (iii) provisions for priority review and payment of 
     claimants whose circumstances require expedited evaluation 
     and compensation;
       (iv) exposure requirements for asbestos claimants to 
     qualify for a remedy that fairly reflect the legal 
     responsibility of at least 1 entity whose liabilities were 
     channeled to an asbestos trust or any class action trust; and
       (v) review and dispute resolution procedures for disputes 
     regarding the master trust's disallowance or other treatment 
     of claims for benefits.
       (I) Medical criteria.--The trustees, in consultation with 
     the trust advisory committee and the legal representative, 
     shall adopt and maintain uniform medical criteria that fairly 
     reflect a current state of applicable law and scientific and 
     medical knowledge. The trustees may adopt the medical 
     criteria of section 121.

[[Page S5385]]

       (J) Award amounts.--The trustees, in consultation with the 
     trust advisory committee and the legal representative, shall 
     adopt a matrix of award amounts for disease categories that 
     applies to all claimants who qualify for payment under the 
     medical criteria and claims resolution procedures. The 
     trustees may adopt the matrix of award amounts of section 131 
     or such other matrix that the trustees determine provides 
     similar benefits for similar claims and fairly reflects the 
     liability of the entities whose liabilities were channeled to 
     the asbestos trusts and any class action trust.
       (K) Payments to claimants.--The trustees shall pay each 
     qualifying claimant a benefit equal to the product of the 
     master trust payment percentage and the award amount to such 
     claimant. The master trust payment percentage at any given 
     time shall be determined by the trustees based on their 
     periodic evaluation of the master trust's assets and 
     projected claims as described in subparagraph (H)(i).
       (L) Amendments.--The trustees, in consultation with the 
     trust advisory committee and legal representative, may amend 
     the trust documents, the claims resolution procedures, the 
     medical criteria and the award matrix to the extent necessary 
     to more effectively and efficiently carry out the purpose of 
     the master trust. If the substantive consolidation of the 
     asbestos trusts and any class action trust effected by this 
     subsection is held to be unconstitutional, the trustees shall 
     adopt amendments to the trust documents, claims resolution 
     procedures, medical criteria and award matrix as may be 
     necessary to bring the master trust in compliance with the 
     Constitution, including if necessary, amendments requiring, 
     for each such trust, separate claims resolution procedures, 
     award amounts and accounting of assets and liabilities.
       (8) Payment to master trust.--The amount determined by the 
     Administrator to be necessary to pay the remaining aggregate 
     obligations to the asbestos trusts and any class action trust 
     under paragraph (1) (A)(iii) and (B) shall be transferred to 
     the master trust within 90 days of termination under this 
     subsection. Any individual with a valid asbestos claim 
     against any asbestos trust or class action trust shall be 
     entitled to seek relief on account of such claim from the 
     master trust described in paragraph (7) in accordance with 
     that paragraph.
       (h) Nature of Claim After Sunset.--
       (1) In general.--
       (A) Relief.--
       (i) In general.--On and after the date of termination under 
     subsection (g), any individual with an asbestos claim who has 
     not previously had a claim resolved by the Fund, may in a 
     civil action obtain relief in damages subject to the terms 
     and conditions under this subsection and paragraph (6) of 
     subsection (g), except that any individual who would have 
     held a valid asbestos claim against any asbestos trust or 
     class action trust had this Act not been enacted may obtain 
     relief on account of such claim only from the master trust 
     described in subsection (g)(7) in accordance with the 
     provisions of such subsection.
       (ii) Rule of construction.--This subparagraph shall not be 
     construed as creating a new Federal cause of action.
       (B) Resolved claims.--An individual who has had a claim 
     resolved by the Fund may not pursue a court action, except 
     that an individual who received an award for a nonmalignant 
     disease (Levels I through V) from the Fund may assert a claim 
     for a subsequent or progressive disease under this 
     subsection, unless the disease was diagnosed or the claimant 
     had discovered facts that would have led a reasonable person 
     to obtain such a diagnosis before the date on which the 
     previous claim against the Fund was disposed.
       (C) Mesothelioma claim.--An individual who received an 
     award for a nonmalignant or malignant disease (except 
     mesothelioma) (Levels I through VIII) from the Fund may 
     assert a claim for mesothelioma under this subsection, unless 
     the mesothelioma was diagnosed or the claimant had discovered 
     facts that would have led a reasonable person to obtain such 
     a diagnosis before the date on which the nonmalignant or 
     other malignant claim was disposed.
       (2) Exclusive remedy.--As of the effective date of a 
     termination of this Act under subsection (g), an action under 
     paragraph (1) shall be the exclusive remedy for any asbestos 
     claim that might otherwise exist under Federal, State, or 
     other law, regardless of whether such claim arose before or 
     after the date of enactment of this Act or of the termination 
     of this Act, except that claims against the Fund that have 
     been resolved before the date of the termination 
     determination under subsection (f) may be paid by the Fund.
       (3) Venue.--
       (A) In general.--Actions under paragraph (1) may be brought 
     in--
       (i) any Federal district court;
       (ii) any State court in the State where the claimant 
     resides; or
       (iii) any State court in a State where the asbestos 
     exposure occurred.
       (B) Defendants not found.--If any defendant cannot be found 
     in the State described in clause (ii) or (iii) of 
     subparagraph (A), the claim may be pursued only against that 
     defendant in the Federal district court or the State court 
     located within any State in which the defendant may be found.
       (C) Determination of most appropriate forum.--If a person 
     alleges that the asbestos exposure occurred in more than 1 
     county (or Federal district), the trial court shall determine 
     which State and county (or Federal district) is the most 
     appropriate forum for the claim. If the court determines that 
     another forum would be the most appropriate forum for a 
     claim, the court shall dismiss the claim. Any otherwise 
     applicable statute of limitations shall be tolled beginning 
     on the date the claim was filed and ending on the date the 
     claim is dismissed under this subparagraph.
       (D) State venue requirements.--Nothing in this paragraph 
     shall preempt or supersede any State's law relating to venue 
     requirements within that State which are more restrictive.
       (4) Class action trusts.--Notwithstanding any other 
     provision of this section, after the assets of any class 
     action trust have been transferred to the Fund in accordance 
     with section 203(b)(5), no asbestos claim may be maintained 
     with respect to asbestos liabilities arising from the 
     operations of a person with respect to whose liabilities for 
     asbestos claims a class action trust has been established, 
     whether such claim names the person or its successors or 
     affiliates as defendants.
       (5) Expert witnesses.--If scientific, technical, or other 
     specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact to 
     understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue in an 
     action permitted under paragraph (1), a witness qualified as 
     an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or 
     education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or 
     otherwise, if--
       (A) the testimony is based upon sufficient facts or data;
       (B) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and 
     methods; and
       (C) the witness has applied the principles and methods 
     reliably to the facts of the case.
       (i) Audit.--Any annual report to Congress required under 
     this section shall be reviewed and certified as fairly 
     representing the financial condition of the Fund by an 
     independent auditor.

     SEC. 406. RULES OF CONSTRUCTION RELATING TO LIABILITY OF THE 
                   UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT.

       (a) Causes of Actions.--Except as otherwise specifically 
     provided in this Act, nothing in this Act shall be construed 
     as creating a cause of action against the United States 
     Government, any entity established under this Act, or any 
     officer or employee of the United States Government or such 
     entity.
       (b) Funding Liability.--Nothing in this Act shall be 
     construed to--
       (1) create any obligation of funding from the United States 
     Government, including any borrowing authorized under section 
     221(b)(2); or
       (2) obligate the United States Government to pay any award 
     or part of an award, if amounts in the Fund are inadequate.

     SEC. 407. RULES OF CONSTRUCTION.

       (a) Libby, Montana Claimants.--Nothing in this Act shall 
     preclude the formation of a fund for the payment of eligible 
     medical expenses related to treating asbestos-related disease 
     for current and former residents of Libby, Montana. The 
     payment of any such medical expenses shall not be collateral 
     source compensation as defined under section 134(a).
       (b) Healthcare From Provider of Choice.--Nothing in this 
     Act shall be construed to preclude any eligible claimant from 
     receiving healthcare from the provider of their choice.

     SEC. 408. VIOLATIONS OF ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH AND SAFETY 
                   REQUIREMENTS.

       (a) Asbestos in Commerce.--If the Administrator receives 
     information concerning conduct occurring after the date of 
     enactment of this Act that may have been a violation of 
     standards issued by the Environmental Protection Agency under 
     the Toxic Substances Control Act (15 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.), 
     relating to the manufacture, importation, processing, 
     disposal, and distribution in commerce of asbestos-containing 
     products, the Administrator shall refer the matter in writing 
     within 30 days after receiving that information to the 
     Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and the 
     United States attorney for possible civil or criminal 
     penalties, including those under section 17 of the Toxic 
     Substances Control Act (15 U.S.C. 2616), and to the 
     appropriate State authority with jurisdiction to investigate 
     asbestos matters.
       (b) Asbestos as Air Pollutant.--If the Administrator 
     receives information concerning conduct occurring after the 
     date of enactment of this Act that may have been a violation 
     of standards issued by the Environmental Protection Agency 
     under the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.), relating to 
     asbestos as a hazardous air pollutant, the Administrator 
     shall refer the matter in writing within 30 days after 
     receiving that information to the Administrator of the 
     Environmental Protection Agency and the United States 
     attorney for possible criminal and civil penalties, including 
     those under section 113 of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 
     7413), and to the appropriate State authority with 
     jurisdiction to investigate asbestos matters.
       (c) Occupational Exposure.--If the Administrator receives 
     information concerning conduct occurring after the date of 
     enactment of this Act that may have been a violation of 
     standards issued by the Occupational Safety and Health 
     Administration under the Occupational Safety and Health Act 
     of 1970 (29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.), relating to occupational 
     exposure to asbestos, the Administrator shall refer the 
     matter in writing within 30 days after receiving that 
     information

[[Page S5386]]

     and refer the matter to the Secretary of Labor or the 
     appropriate State agency with authority to enforce 
     occupational safety and health standards, for investigation 
     for possible civil or criminal penalties under section 17 of 
     the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (29 U.S.C. 
     666).
       (d) Enhanced Criminal Penalties for Willful Violations of 
     Occupational Standards for Asbestos.--Section 17(e) of the 
     Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (29 U.S.C. 656(e)) 
     is amended--
       (1) by striking ``Any'' and inserting ``(1) Except as 
     provided in paragraph (2), any''; and
       (2) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(2) Any employer who willfully violates any standard 
     issued under section 6 with respect to the control of 
     occupational exposure to asbestos, shall upon conviction be 
     punished by a fine in accordance with section 3571 of title 
     18, United States Code, or by imprisonment for not more than 
     5 years, or both, except that if the conviction is for a 
     violation committed after a first conviction of such person, 
     punishment shall be by a fine in accordance with section 3571 
     of title 18, United States Code, or by imprisonment for not 
     more than 10 years, or both.''.
       (e) Contributions to the Asbestos Trust Fund by EPA and 
     OSHA Asbestos Violators.--
       (1) In general.--The Administrator shall assess employers 
     or other individuals determined to have violated asbestos 
     statutes, standards, or regulations administered by the 
     Department of Labor, the Environmental Protection Agency, and 
     their State counterparts, for contributions to the Asbestos 
     Injury Claims Resolution Fund (in this section referred to as 
     the ``Fund'').
       (2) Identification of violators.--Each year, the 
     Administrator shall--
       (A) in consultation with the Assistant Secretary of Labor 
     for Occupational Safety and Health, identify all employers 
     that, during the previous year, were subject to final orders 
     finding that they violated standards issued by the 
     Occupational Safety and Health Administration for control of 
     occupational exposure to asbestos (29 C.F.R. 1910.1001, 
     1915.1001, and 1926.1101) or the equivalent asbestos 
     standards issued by any State under section 18 of the 
     Occupational Safety and Health Act (29 U.S.C. 668); and
       (B) in consultation with the Administrator of the 
     Environmental Protection Agency, identify all employers or 
     other individuals who, during the previous year, were subject 
     to final orders finding that they violated asbestos 
     regulations administered by the Environmental Protection 
     Agency (including the National Emissions Standard for 
     Asbestos established under the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7401 
     et seq.), the asbestos worker protection standards 
     established under part 763 of title 40, Code of Federal 
     Regulations, and the regulations banning asbestos promulgated 
     under section 501 of this Act), or equivalent State asbestos 
     regulations.
       (3) Assessment for contribution.--The Administrator shall 
     assess each such identified employer or other individual for 
     a contribution to the Fund for that year in an amount equal 
     to--
       (A) 2 times the amount of total penalties assessed for the 
     first violation of occupational health and environmental 
     statutes, standards, or regulations;
       (B) 4 times the amount of total penalties for a second 
     violation of such statutes, standards, or regulations; and
       (C) 6 times the amount of total penalties for any 
     violations thereafter.
       (4) Liability.--Any assessment under this subsection shall 
     be considered a liability under this Act.
       (5) Payments.--Each such employer or other individual 
     assessed for a contribution to the Fund under this subsection 
     shall make the required contribution to the Fund within 90 
     days of the date of receipt of notice from the Administrator 
     requiring payment.
       (6) Enforcement.--The Administrator is authorized to bring 
     a civil action under section 223(c) against any employer or 
     other individual who fails to make timely payment of 
     contributions assessed under this section.
       (f) Review of Federal Sentencing Guidelines for 
     Environmental Crimes Related to Asbestos.--Under section 994 
     of title 28, United States Code, and in accordance with this 
     section, the United States Sentencing Commission shall review 
     and amend, as appropriate, the United States Sentencing 
     Guidelines and related policy statements to ensure that--
       (1) appropriate changes are made within the guidelines to 
     reflect any statutory amendments that have occurred since the 
     time that the current guideline was promulgated;
       (2) the base offense level, adjustments, and specific 
     offense characteristics contained in section 2Q1.2 of the 
     United States Sentencing Guidelines (relating to mishandling 
     of hazardous or toxic substances or pesticides; 
     recordkeeping, tampering, and falsification; and unlawfully 
     transporting hazardous materials in commerce) are increased 
     as appropriate to ensure that future asbestos-related 
     offenses reflect the seriousness of the offense, the harm to 
     the community, the need for ongoing reform, and the highly 
     regulated nature of asbestos;
       (3) the base offense level, adjustments, and specific 
     offense characteristics are sufficient to deter and punish 
     future activity and are adequate in cases in which the 
     relevant offense conduct--
       (A) involves asbestos as a hazardous or toxic substance; 
     and
       (B) occurs after the date of enactment of this Act;
       (4) the adjustments and specific offense characteristics 
     contained in section 2B1.1 of the United States Sentencing 
     Guidelines related to fraud, deceit, and false statements, 
     adequately take into account that asbestos was involved in 
     the offense, and the possibility of death or serious bodily 
     harm as a result;
       (5) the guidelines that apply to organizations in chapter 8 
     of the United States Sentencing Guidelines are sufficient to 
     deter and punish organizational criminal misconduct that 
     involves the use, handling, purchase, sale, disposal, or 
     storage of asbestos; and
       (6) the guidelines that apply to organizations in chapter 8 
     of the United States Sentencing Guidelines are sufficient to 
     deter and punish organizational criminal misconduct that 
     involves fraud, deceit, or false statements against the 
     Office of Asbestos Disease Compensation.

     SEC. 409. NONDISCRIMINATION OF HEALTH INSURANCE.

       (a) Denial, Termination, or Alteration of Health 
     Coverage.--No health insurer offering a health plan may deny 
     or terminate coverage, or in any way alter the terms of 
     coverage, of any claimant or the beneficiary of a claimant, 
     on account of the participation of the claimant or 
     beneficiary in a medical monitoring program under this Act, 
     or as a result of any information discovered as a result of 
     such medical monitoring.
       (b) Definitions.--In this section:
       (1) Health insurer.--The term ``health insurer'' means--
       (A) an insurance company, healthcare service contractor, 
     fraternal benefit organization, insurance agent, third-party 
     administrator, insurance support organization, or other 
     person subject to regulation under the laws related to health 
     insurance of any State;
       (B) a managed care organization; or
       (C) an employee welfare benefit plan regulated under the 
     Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (29 U.S.C. 
     1001 et seq.).
       (2) Health plan.--The term ``health plan'' means--
       (A) a group health plan (as such term is defined in section 
     607 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 
     (29 U.S.C. 1167)), and a multiple employer welfare 
     arrangement (as defined in section 3(4) of such Act) that 
     provides health insurance coverage; or
       (B) any contractual arrangement for the provision of a 
     payment for healthcare, including any health insurance 
     arrangement or any arrangement consisting of a hospital or 
     medical expense incurred policy or certificate, hospital or 
     medical service plan contract, or health maintenance 
     organizing subscriber contract.
       (c) Conforming Amendments.--
       (1) ERISA.--Section 702(a)(1) of the Employee Retirement 
     Income Security Act of 1974 (29 U.S.C. 1182(a)(1)), is 
     amended by adding at the end the following:
       ``(I) Participation in a medical monitoring program under 
     the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006.''.
       (2) Public service health act.--Section 2702(a)(1) of the 
     Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 300gg-1(a)(1)) is 
     amended by adding at the end the following:
       ``(I) Participation in a medical monitoring program under 
     the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006.''.
       (3) Internal revenue code of 1986.--Section 9802(a)(1) of 
     the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by adding at the 
     end the following:
       ``(I) Participation in a medical monitoring program under 
     the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006.''.

                         TITLE V--ASBESTOS BAN

     SEC. 501. PROHIBITION ON ASBESTOS CONTAINING PRODUCTS.

       (a) In General.--Title II of the Toxic Substances Control 
     Act (15 U.S.C. 2641 et seq.) is amended--
       (1) by inserting before section 201 (15 U.S.C. 2641) the 
     following:

                  ``Subtitle A--General Provisions'';

     and
       (2) by adding at the end the following:

           ``Subtitle B--Ban of Asbestos Containing Products

     ``SEC. 221. BAN OF ASBESTOS CONTAINING PRODUCTS.

       ``(a) Definitions.--In this chapter:
       ``(1) Administrator.--The term `Administrator' means the 
     Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.
       ``(2) Asbestos.--The term `asbestos' includes--
       ``(A) chrysotile;
       ``(B) amosite;
       ``(C) crocidolite;
       ``(D) tremolite asbestos;
       ``(E) winchite asbestos;
       ``(F) richterite asbestos;
       ``(G) anthophyllite asbestos;
       ``(H) actinolite asbestos;
       ``(I) asbestiform amphibole minerals; and
       ``(J) any of the minerals listed under subparagraphs (A) 
     through (I) that has been chemically treated or altered, and 
     any asbestiform variety, type, or component thereof.
       ``(3) Asbestos containing product.--The term `asbestos 
     containing product' means any product (including any part) to 
     which asbestos is deliberately or knowingly added

[[Page S5387]]

     or used because the specific properties of asbestos are 
     necessary for product use or function. Under no circumstances 
     shall the term `asbestos containing product' be construed to 
     include products that contain de minimus levels of naturally 
     occurring asbestos as defined by the Administrator not later 
     than 1 year after the date of enactment of this chapter.
       ``(4) Distribute in commerce.--The term `distribute in 
     commerce'--
       ``(A) has the meaning given the term in section 3 of the 
     Toxic Substances Control Act (15 U.S.C. 2602); and
       ``(B) shall not include--
       ``(i) an action taken with respect to an asbestos 
     containing product in connection with the end use of the 
     asbestos containing product by a person that is an end user, 
     or an action taken by a person who purchases or receives a 
     product, directly or indirectly, from an end user; or
       ``(ii) distribution of an asbestos containing product by a 
     person solely for the purpose of disposal of the asbestos 
     containing product in compliance with applicable Federal, 
     State, and local requirements.
       ``(b) In General.--Subject to subsection (c), the 
     Administrator shall promulgate--
       ``(1) not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of 
     this chapter, proposed regulations that--
       ``(A) prohibit persons from manufacturing, processing, or 
     distributing in commerce asbestos containing products; and
       ``(B) provide for implementation of subsections (c) and 
     (d); and
       ``(2) not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of 
     this chapter, final regulations that, effective 60 days after 
     the date of promulgation, prohibit persons from 
     manufacturing, processing, or distributing in commerce 
     asbestos containing products.
       ``(c) Exemptions.--
       ``(1) In general.--Any person may petition the 
     Administrator for, and the Administrator may grant, an 
     exemption from the requirements of subsection (b), if the 
     Administrator determines that--
       ``(A) the exemption would not result in an unreasonable 
     risk of injury to public health or the environment; and
       ``(B) the person has made good faith efforts to develop, 
     but has been unable to develop, a substance, or identify a 
     mineral that does not present an unreasonable risk of injury 
     to public health or the environment and may be substituted 
     for an asbestos containing product.
       ``(2) Terms and conditions.--Except for an exception 
     authorized under paragraph (3)(A)(i), an exemption granted 
     under this subsection shall be in effect for such period (not 
     to exceed 5 years) and subject to such terms and conditions 
     as the Administrator may prescribe.
       ``(3) Governmental use.--
       ``(A) In general.--
       ``(i) Department of defense.--Nothing in this section or in 
     the regulations promulgated by the Administrator under 
     subsection (b) shall prohibit or limit the manufacture, 
     processing, or distribution in commerce of asbestos 
     containing products by or for the Department of Defense or 
     the use of asbestos containing products by or for the 
     Department of Defense if the Secretary of Defense certifies 
     (or recertifies within 10 years of a prior certification), 
     and provides a copy of the certification to Congress, that--

       ``(I) use of asbestos containing product is necessary to 
     the critical functions of the Department, which includes the 
     use of the asbestos containing product in any weaponry, 
     equipment, aircraft, vehicles, or other classes or categories 
     of property which are owned or operated by the Armed Forces 
     of the United States (including the Coast Guard) or by the 
     National Guard of any State and which are uniquely military 
     in nature;
       ``(II) no reasonably available and equivalent alternatives 
     to the asbestos containing product exist for the intended 
     purpose; and
       ``(III) use of the asbestos containing product will not 
     result in a known unreasonable risk to health or the 
     environment.

       ``(ii) National aeronautics and space administration.--The 
     Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency shall 
     provide an exemption from the requirements of subsection (b), 
     without review or limit on duration, if such exemption for an 
     asbestos containing product is sought by the Administrator of 
     the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the 
     Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space 
     Administration certifies, and provides a copy of that 
     certification to Congress, that--

       ``(I) the asbestos containing product is necessary to the 
     critical functions of the National Aeronautics and Space 
     Administration;
       ``(II) no reasonable alternatives to the asbestos 
     containing product exist for the intended purpose; and
       ``(III) the use of the asbestos containing product will not 
     result in an unreasonable risk to health or the environment.

       ``(B) Administrative procedure act.--Any certification 
     required under subparagraph (A) shall not be subject to 
     chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code (commonly referred 
     to as the `Administrative Procedure Act').
       ``(4) Specific exemptions.--The following are exempted:
       ``(A) Asbestos diaphragms for use in the manufacture of 
     chlor-alkali and the products and derivative therefrom.
       ``(B) Roofing cements, coatings, and mastics utilizing 
     asbestos that is totally encapsulated with asphalt, subject 
     to a determination by the Administrator of the Environmental 
     Protection Agency under paragraph (5).
       ``(5) Environmental protection agency review.--
       ``(A) Review in 18 months.--Not later than 18 months after 
     the date of enactment of this chapter, the Administrator of 
     the Environmental Protection Agency shall complete a review 
     of the exemption for roofing cements, coatings, and mastics 
     utilizing asbestos that are totally encapsulated with asphalt 
     to determine whether--
       ``(i) the exemption would result in an unreasonable risk of 
     injury to public health or the environment; and
       ``(ii) there are reasonable, commercial alternatives to the 
     roofing cements, coatings, and mastics utilizing asbestos 
     that is totally encapsulated with asphalt.
       ``(B) Revocation of exemption.--Upon completion of the 
     review, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection 
     Agency shall have the authority to revoke the exemption for 
     the products exempted under paragraph (4)(B), if warranted.
       ``(d) Disposal.--
       ``(1) In general.--Except as provided in paragraph (2), not 
     later than 3 years after the date of enactment of this 
     chapter, each person that possesses an asbestos containing 
     product that is subject to the prohibition established under 
     this section shall dispose of the asbestos containing 
     product, by a means that is in compliance with applicable 
     Federal, State, and local requirements.
       ``(2) Exemption.--Nothing in paragraph (1)--
       ``(A) applies to an asbestos containing product that--
       ``(i) is no longer in the stream of commerce; or
       ``(ii) is in the possession of an end user or a person who 
     purchases or receives an asbestos containing product directly 
     or indirectly from an end user; or
       ``(B) requires that an asbestos containing product 
     described in subparagraph (A) be removed or replaced.''.
       (b) Technical and Conforming Amendments.--The table of 
     contents in section 1 of the Toxic Substances Control Act (15 
     U.S.C. prec. 2601) is amended--
       (1) by inserting before the item relating to section 201 
     the following:

                  ``Subtitle A--General Provisions'';

     and
       (2) by adding at the end of the items relating to title II 
     the following:

           ``Subtitle B--Ban of Asbestos Containing Products

``Sec. 221. Ban of asbestos containing products.''.

     SEC. 502. NATURALLY OCCURRING ASBESTOS.

       (a) Study.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 12 months after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Environmental 
     Protection Agency shall--
       (A) conduct a study to assess the risks of exposure to 
     naturally occurring asbestos, including the appropriateness 
     of the existing risk assessment values for asbestos and 
     methods of assessing exposure; and
       (B) submit a report that contains a detailed statement of 
     the findings and conclusions of such study to--
       (i) the majority and minority leaders of the Senate;
       (ii) the Speaker and the minority leader of the House of 
     Representatives; and
       (iii) the relevant committees of jurisdiction of the Senate 
     and House of Representatives, including--

       (I) the Environment and Public Works Committee of the 
     Senate;
       (II) the Appropriations Committee of the Senate;
       (III) the Judiciary Committee of the Senate;
       (IV) the Energy and Commerce Committee of the House of 
     Representatives;
       (V) the Judiciary Committee of the House of 
     Representatives; and
       (VI) the Appropriations Committee of the House of 
     Representatives.

       (2) Development requirements.--
       (A) In general.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Environmental 
     Protection Agency, in consultation with appropriate Federal 
     and State agencies and other interested parties after 
     appropriate notice, shall establish dust management 
     guidelines, and model State regulations that States can 
     choose to adopt, for commercial and residential development, 
     and road construction in areas where naturally occurring 
     asbestos is present and considered a risk. Such dust 
     management guidelines may at a minimum incorporate provisions 
     consistent with the relevant California Code of Regulation 
     (17 C.C.R. 93105-06).
       (B) Dust management guidelines.--Guidelines under this 
     paragraph shall include--
       (i) site management practices to minimize the disturbance 
     of naturally occurring asbestos and contain asbestos 
     mobilized from the source at the development site;
       (ii) air and soil monitoring programs to assess asbestos 
     exposure levels at the development site and to determine 
     whether asbestos is migrating from the site; and
       (iii) appropriate disposal options for asbestos-containing 
     materials to be removed from the site during development.
       (b) Testing Protocols.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 18 months after the date of 
     enactment of this Act, the

[[Page S5388]]

     Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, in 
     consultation with appropriate State agencies, shall establish 
     comprehensive protocols for testing for the presence of 
     naturally occurring asbestos.
       (2) Protocols.--The protocols under this subsection shall 
     address both ambient air monitoring and activity-based 
     personal sampling and include--
       (A) suggested sampling devices and guidelines to address 
     the issues of methods comparability, sampler operation, 
     performance specifications, and quality control and quality 
     assurance;
       (B) a national laboratory and air sampling accreditation 
     program for all methods of analyses of air and soil for 
     naturally occurring asbestos;
       (C) recommended laboratory analytical procedures, including 
     fiber types, fiber lengths, and fiber aspect ratios; and
       (D) protocols for collecting and analyzing aggregate and 
     soil samples for asbestos content, including proper and 
     consistent sample preparation practices suited to the 
     activity likely to occur on the soils of the study area.
       (c) Existing Buildings and Areas.--Not later than 1 year 
     after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of 
     the Environmental Protection Agency shall issue public 
     education materials, recommended best management practices 
     and recommended remedial measures for areas containing 
     naturally occurring asbestos including existing--
       (1) schools and parks; and
       (2) commercial and residential development.
       (d) Mapping.--The Secretary of the Interior shall--
       (1) acquire infrared mapping data for naturally occurring 
     asbestos, prioritizing California counties experiencing rapid 
     population growth;
       (2) process that data into map images; and
       (3) collaborate with the California Geological Survey and 
     any other appropriate State agencies in producing final maps 
     of asbestos zones.
       (e) Research Grants.--The Director of the National 
     Institutes of Health shall administer 1 or more research 
     grants to qualified entities for studies that focus on better 
     understanding the health risks of exposure to naturally 
     occurring asbestos. Grants under this subsection shall be 
     awarded through a competitive peer-reviewed, merit-based 
     process.
       (f) Task Force Participation.--Representatives of Region IX 
     of the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and the 
     Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry of the 
     United States Department of Health and Human Services shall 
     participate in any task force convened by the State of 
     California to evaluate policies and adopt guidelines for the 
     mitigation of risks associated with naturally occurring 
     asbestos.
       (g) Matching Grants.--The Administrator of the 
     Environmental Protection Agency is authorized to award 50 
     percent matching Federal grants to States and municipalities. 
     Not later than 4 months after the date of enactment of this 
     Act, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency 
     shall establish criteria to award such grants--
       (1) for monitoring and remediation of naturally occurring 
     asbestos--
       (A) at schools, parks, and other public areas; and
       (B) in serpentine aggregate roads generating significant 
     public exposure; and
       (2) for development, implementation, and enforcement of 
     State and local dust management regulations concerning 
     naturally occurring asbestos, provided that after the 
     Administrator has issued model State regulations under 
     subsection (a)(2), such State and local regulations shall be 
     at least as protective as the model regulations to be 
     eligible for the matching grants.
       (h) Availability of Funds.--An amount of $40,000,000 from 
     the Fund shall be made available to carry out the 
     requirements of this section, including up to $9,000,000 for 
     the Secretary of the Interior to carry out subsection (d), up 
     to $4,000,000 for the Director of the National Institutes of 
     Health to carry out subsection (e), and the remainder for the 
     Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, at 
     least $15,000,000 of which shall be used for the matching 
     grants under subsection (g).
       (i) Construction.--
       (1) Guidelines and protocols.--The guidelines and protocols 
     issued by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection 
     Agency under the specific authorities in subsections (a), 
     (b), and (c) shall be construed as nonbinding best practices 
     unless adopted as a mandatory requirement by a State or local 
     government. Notwithstanding the preceding sentence, 
     accreditation for testing will not be granted except in 
     accordance with the guidelines issued under subsection 
     (b)(2)(B).
       (2) Federal causes of action.--This section shall not be 
     construed as creating any new Federal cause of action for 
     civil, criminal, or punitive damages.
       (3) Federal claims.--This section shall not be construed as 
     creating any new Federal claim for injunctive or declaratory 
     relief against a State, local, or private party.
       (4) States and localities.--Nothing in this section shall 
     limit the authority of States or localities concerning 
     naturally occurring asbestos.

  Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, today, I join the chairman of the Judiciary 
Committee, Senator Specter, in introducing an amended version of S. 
852, the Fairness in Asbestos Injury Resolution Act of 2006, the FAIR 
Act. This legislation enhances our previous trust fund bill by adopting 
many of the amendments filed in February by Senators on both sides of 
the aisle. We have incorporated amendments that further protect against 
fraud and make sure the sickest victims are paid as soon as possible. 
We added crucial provisions that make the trust fund accessible to 
victims who were exposed to asbestos during the attacks on the World 
Trade Center and Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. We clarified the bill 
language to ensure that inactive dormant claims cannot be revived to 
overwhelm the trust fund.
  This legislation also contains a few additional changes that we 
believe respond directly to concerns raised by our colleagues during 
floor debate. The floor amendments incorporated in this bill include, 
among others, the Kyl funding amendment that will protect small and 
medium sized businesses. We also addressed the concerns of businesses 
that currently pay nothing or very little because they are well-
insured. None of these changes undermine the existing guarantee on 
overall private funding at $140 billion.
  Also importantly, we preserved the ability of the existing bankruptcy 
trusts to continue paying impaired victims while the trust fund becomes 
operational. This will smooth the transition for victims who were 
exposed by companies that are currently protected from suit by 
bankruptcy. And finally, we clarified the statute of limitations for 
our Nation's war veterans so they will have better access to the trust 
fund.
  None of the additional provisions contained in this substitute 
diminish the bill's key principle: That the asbestos trust fund will be 
comprised solely of private money. Nothing in this bill will reduce the 
protection of victims against insurance subrogation. I am proud to 
report that we have also maintained our core medical criteria so that 
those who have been impaired by asbestos exposure will receive 
compensation appropriate to their injuries.
  Earlier this week, we were all saddened to learn of the passing of 
Judge Edward R. Becker. As many of my colleagues are keenly aware, 
Judge Becker worked patiently with Senators and all of the stakeholders 
on this legislation for almost 3 years. We engaged in an exhaustive 
process of committee hearings, deliberations and negotiations. Judge 
Becker was crucial to each step in the process. We would not have made 
the bipartisan progress that this legislation reflects without his 
tireless efforts.
  Unfortunately, time is running out for this session of Congress. I 
know that some partisans will claim that we should refrain from 
reaching across the aisle during an election year but this persistent 
problem compels us to move forward to try and help the thousands of 
victims of asbestos exposure. I urge the Senate majority leader to give 
us sufficient floor time to debate and vote on this important 
legislation on its merits.
                                 ______
                                 
      By Mr. ALLEN (for himself, Mr. Nelson of Nebraska, Mr. Craig, Mr. 
        Inhofe, Mr. Lott, Mrs. Dole, Mr. Vitter, Mr. Ensign, Mr. 
        Martinez, Mr. Burr, Mr. Crapo, Mr. Sununu, and Mr. Thune):
  S 3275. A bill to amend title 18, United States Code, to provide a 
national standard in accordance with which nonresidents of a State may 
carry concealed firearms in the State; to the Committee on the 
Judiciary.
  Mr. ALLEN. Mr. President, I rise today on behalf of myself, my good 
friend from Nebraska, Senator Nelson, and 11 other Senators--Senators 
Craig, Inhofe, Lott, Dole, Vitter, Ensign, Martinez, Burr, Crapo, 
Sununu, and Thune--to introduce legislation to amend title 18, United 
States Code, to provide a national standard under which nonresidents of 
a State may carry concealed firearms in the State. The bill is a 
companion bill to H.R. 4547, which Congressmen Cliff Stearns of Florida 
and Rick Boucher of Virginia have introduced in the House.
  Our bill would allow any person with a valid concealed carry permit 
or license issued by a State to carry a concealed firearm in any other 
State if they meet certain criteria. The laws of

[[Page S5389]]

each State that govern where concealed firearms may be carried would 
still apply and would be fully respected within its borders. The bill 
would simply require States to recognize each other's concealed carry 
permits and licenses, just as they recognize drivers' licenses. It 
would not create a Federal licensing system.
  The right-to-carry movement has enjoyed great success throughout our 
Nation. To cite just one example, the murder rate in my Commonwealth of 
Virginia has plunged a dramatic 40 percent since the right-to-carry law 
that I signed as Governor took effect in 1995.
  This is commonsense legislation. It recognizes that Congress has 
affirmed an individual's right to carry firearms for ``protective 
purposes in the Gun Control Act, 1968, and in the Firearm Owners' 
Protection Act, 1986. In addition, last year, when this Congress passed 
the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act on a strong bi-partisan 
vote, we preserved all law-abiding citizens' access to firearms and 
ammunition for all lawful purposes, including, of course, self-defense.
  I urge all my colleagues to join with Senator Nelson and me in 
cosponsoring this bill to increase the safety of the many law-abiding 
Americans who have chosen to carry a firearm for protection against 
criminal attack.
                                 ______
                                 
      By Mr. LUGAR (for himself, Mr. Biden, Mr. Hagel, Mr. Alexander, 
        and Mr. Warner):
  S. 3322. A bill to build operational readiness in civilian agencies, 
and for other purposes; considered and passed.
  Mr. LUGAR. Mr. President, this legislation is the result of a 
conversation begun in 2003 between members of the Senate Foreign 
Relations Committee and the leadership of the State Department. Since 
that time, the legislation has gone through a number of evolutions and 
has passed the committee unanimously both as a freestanding bill and as 
part of the State Department authorization bill. I am asking the Senate 
to pass it now as a free-standing bill.
  International crises are inevitable, and in most cases, U.S. national 
security interests will be threatened by sustained instability. The war 
on terrorism necessitates that we not leave nations crumbling and 
ungoverned. We have already seen how terrorists can exploit nations 
afflicted by lawlessness and desperate circumstances. They seek out 
such places to establish training camps, recruit new members, and tap 
into a global black market in weapons.
  In this international atmosphere, the United States must have the 
right structures, personnel, and resources in place when an emergency 
occurs. A delay in our response of a few weeks, or even days, can mean 
the difference between success and failure. Clearly we need a full 
range of tools to prevail. Our committee's focus has been on boosting 
the civilian side of our stabilization and reconstruction capabilities, 
while encouraging improved mechanisms for civilian and military 
agencies to work together on these missions.
  Over the years, our Government has cobbled together plans, people, 
and projects to respond to post-conflict situations in the Balkans, in 
Afghanistan, in Iraq, and elsewhere. The efforts of those engaged have 
been valiant, but these emergencies have been complex and time 
sensitive. In my judgment, our ad hoc approach has been inadequate to 
deal quickly and efficiently with complex emergencies. In turn, our 
lack of preparation for immediate stabilization contingencies has made 
our subsequent reconstruction efforts more difficult and expensive.
  This legislation builds on legislation, S. 2127, that Senators Biden 
and Hagel and I introduced in early 2004 to encourage and support a 
well-organized, sufficiently resourced and strongly led civilian 
counterpart to the military in post-conflict zones. It is our view that 
the civilian side needs both operational capability and a significant 
surge capacity. This legislation gives statutory status to the State 
Department's Office of the Coordinator of Reconstruction and 
Stabilization and makes the position of Coordinator subject to the 
advice and consent of the Senate. The legislation authorizes the 
establishment of a civilian response corps with both Active-Duty and 
Reserve components and provides the office flexibility in personnel 
management, pay, and benefits to build that corps and create surge 
capacity in an emergency. Finally, it authorizes expenditures for a 
crisis response fund, for the civilian response corps, and for a 
substantial training, planning and operational capacity for the office.
  The State Department has come a long way in recognizing the role it 
could and should be playing. It established the Office of the 
Coordinator of Reconstruction and Stabilization in July of 2004. Under 
the leadership of Carlos Pascual, the office conducted a government-
wide inventory of the civilian assets that might be available for 
stabilization and reconstruction tasks in post-conflict zones. It has 
undertaken the planning necessary to recruit, train, and organize a 
Reserve corps of civilians for rapid deployment. It also is formulating 
interagency contingency plans--informed by our past experiences--for 
countries and regions of the world where the next crisis could suddenly 
arise.
  In December 2005, the President signed a directive putting the 
Secretary of State in charge of interagency stabilization and 
reconstruction efforts. Last month, Secretary Rice promised to dedicate 
15 of the 100 new positions she is requesting for fiscal year 2007 to 
the Reconstruction and Stabilization Office. This will increase staff 
to about 95 individuals, with seconded personnel and contractors 
included in that count.
  Despite this good progress, significant gaps in our capabilities 
remain. Our legislation calls for a 250-person Active-Duty corps, in 
addition to the Reserves, made up of both State Department and OSAID 
employees. Such a corps could be rapidly deployed with the military for 
both initial assessments and operational purposes. They would be the 
first civilian team on the ground in post-conflict situations, well in 
advance of the establishment of an embassy. This Active-Duty corps 
would be able to do a wide range of civilian jobs that are needed in a 
post-conflict or otherwise hostile environment.

  Such a 250-person corps would be no larger than the typical Army 
company, but it would be a force multiplier. It would be equipped with 
the authority and training to take broad operational responsibility for 
stabilization missions. Establishment of such a corps is a modest 
investment when seen as part of the overall national security budget. 
Even in peace time, we maintain Active-Duty military forces of almost 
1.4 million men and women who train and plan for the possibility of 
war. Given how critical post-conflict situations have been to American 
national security in the last decade, I believe it is reasonable to 
have a mere 250 civilians who are training for these situations and are 
capable of being deployed anywhere in the world, at any time they may 
be needed.
  This legislation also calls on the heads of other executive branch 
agencies to establish personnel exchange programs designed to enhance 
stabilization and reconstruction capacity. The Departments of 
Agriculture, Treasury, Commerce, Health and Human Services--indeed 
virtually all the civilian agencies--can make unique contributions to 
the overall effort.
  Once the Department embraced the concept of organizing and leading 
the civilian effort, the main roadblock became resources. So far, only 
about $21 million has been provided for the operations of the office, 
despite administration requests for substantially more funding. For 
2007, the administration has requested a $75 million crisis response 
fund to be made available as a contingency for stabilization and 
reconstruction crises. Of this amount, the administration would like to 
spend $25 million for the organization, training, and emergency 
deployment of the Reserve component of the response corps. This 
legislation authorizes the crisis response fund and $80 million for the 
operations of the new State Department office and the Active-Duty 
corps, including training, equipment, and travel.
  So far, the office has heroically stretched dollars by recruiting 
personnel on detail from other agencies, taking advantage of DOD-funded 
training, and getting the State Department to pay for the overhead of 
new office space from other sources. But such a hand-to-mouth existence 
has obvious disadvantages. Detailed personnel rarely stay long, and 
institutional memory

[[Page S5390]]

becomes short. Relying on DOD funds puts the office in the passenger 
seat when it should have the resources to pursue uniquely civilian-
oriented goals.
  In addition, the crisis response fund outlined in our legislation has 
not been appropriated. On the Senate side, we were able to secure $20 
million for the fund in the fiscal year 2006 Foreign Operations 
Appropriations bill. The entire amount, however, was eliminated in the 
conference committee with the House.
  One stopgap measure that the Congress did pass in fiscal year 2006 
was the authority to transfer up to $100 million from the Pentagon to 
the State Department for boosting the civilian response to particular 
trouble spots. However, this money will not provide the resources 
necessary over the long term to improve the State Department's capacity 
to be a capable partner in responding to complex emergencies.
  The foreign affairs budget is always a tougher sell to Congress than 
the military budget. President Bush has attempted to reverse the 
downward spiral in overall foreign affairs spending that took place in 
the 1990s. In that decade, both the executive and legislative branches 
rushed to cash in on the peace dividend. But President Bush has 
consistently requested increases for the 150 Account in his budgets. 
For the fiscal year 2007 budget, he requested a 10.3-percent increase 
over the CBO-determined baseline of fiscal year 2006.
  But, if previous years are any example, the amount appropriated will 
fall far short of the amount requested. Last year, the President's 
annual request for foreign affairs was cut by $2.1 billion. The 
Congress cut the fiscal 2005 annual request by a similar amount. 
According to a Congressional Research Service report that I requested, 
Congress has provided $5.8 billion less than the President has 
requested for foreign affairs in regular and supplemental spending 
bills since September 11, 2001.
  Today, when we are in the midst of a global struggle of information 
and ideas: when anti-Western riots can be set off by the publication of 
a cartoon; when we are in the midst of a crisis with Iran that will 
decide whether the nonproliferation regime of the last half century 
will be abandoned; when we have entered our fourth year of attempting 
to stabilize Iraq; and when years of effort to move the Arab-Israeli 
peace process are at risk--even then, we are unable to muster the 
necessary support for the President's budget in foreign affairs.
  As all this suggests, we have a long way to go in creating the kind 
of robust civilian capacity that we need. Both the State Department and 
the Defense Department are keenly aware of the importance of this 
legislation. If we cannot think this through and plan better as a 
government, the United States may come to depend even more on our 
military for tasks and functions far beyond its current role. But I 
remain optimistic that we can build on the progress already made to 
create a strong and reliable civilian component that boosts our 
stabilization and reconstruction capabilities. Passing this legislation 
will demonstrate that there is a keen understanding in the Senate that 
we need to move forward. It will support executive branch actions 
already taken and encourage further progress. I urge its passage.
                                 ______
                                 
      By Mr. BUNNING (for himself, Mr. Obama, Mr. Lugar, Mr. Burns, and 
        Mr. Pryor):
  S. 3325. A bill to promote coal-to-liquid fuel activities; to the 
Committee on Finance.
  Mr. BUNNING. Mr. President, I rise today to introduce the Coal-to-
Liquid Fuel Promotion Act of 2006. Last month, I chaired an Energy 
Committee hearing on this promising technology that can turn coal into 
diesel fuel. Working with industry and the scientific community, I have 
put together a comprehensive piece of legislation with the goal of 
providing the right combination of incentives to create a backbone of 
coal-to-liquids infrastructure in the United States.
  The first step is for the Department of Energy to help with planning 
these large-scale coal-to-liquids plants. This legislation will create 
a loan program where the private sector can obtain a loan of up to $20 
million, matched dollar-for-dollar by non-federal money, to pay for the 
significant costs of planning, permitting and engineering a coal-to-
liquid facility. This program will have minimal cost to the taxpayers 
as these loans will be repaid, within 5 years, after a planned plant is 
financed. The federal government will also provide loan guarantees for 
coal-to-liquids facilities by expanding the program authorized in the 
Energy Policy Act of 2005.
  It is not enough to simply help engineer plants or provide a loan 
guarantee--there must be an economic motivation for investors to put up 
the $1 to $2 billion it costs to build a large-scale coal-to-liquids 
plant. To that end, this bill will create a separate investment tax 
credit for coal-to-liquids technology. It will also extend the fuel tax 
credit for coal-to-liquids fuels until 2020. The combination of these 
incentives will be the one-two punch needed to jumpstart investment in 
this marketplace. This package of incentives is essential to developing 
a domestic coal-to-liquid fuels market.
  With this domestically produced fuel from coal, we can bring down gas 
prices and be closer to energy independence. And these two goals, which 
are essential to our national security, bring me to the last part of 
this legislation. The Department of Defense consumes large amounts of 
fuel--for our airplanes, ships and tanks--and nearly all of it is based 
on petroleum and too much of it comes from the Middle East. It is time 
we ensure that our military has a safe, domestic source of 
transportation fuel. My legislation will authorize funding for the 
continued testing and evaluation of coal-to-liquid fuels by the 
military. It includes authorization to engage in long-term contracts 
with producers to ensure a stable, domestic fuel for our armed forces. 
This bill also authorizes the Department of Energy and Department of 
Defense to evaluate coal-to-liquids fuels for storage in the Strategic 
Petroleum Reserve and allows the government to turn to this domestic 
source of fuel for filling the reserve.
  With this legislation America can take a huge step toward energy 
independence. My bill will foster a domestic marketplace for coal-to-
liquids fuels, bring down gasoline costs and provide our military with 
a secure, domestic fuel source. I urge my colleagues to support this 
bill.
                                 ______
                                 
      By Mr. McCONNELL (for himself, Mrs. Feinstein, Mr. McCain, Mr. 
        Frist, Mr. Reid, Mr. Alexander, Mr. Allard, Mr. Allen, Mr. 
        Bennett, Mr. Biden, Mr. Bingaman, Mrs. Boxer, Mr. Brownback, 
        Mr. Bunning, Mr. Burns, Mr. Burr, Mr. Chafee, Mr. Chambliss, 
        Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Cochran, Ms. Collins, Mr. DeWine, Mrs. Dole, 
        Mr. Domenici, Mr. Durbin, Mr. Ensign, Mr. Feingold, Mr. Hagel, 
        Mr. Harkin, Mr. Kennedy, Mr. Kerry, Mr. Kohl, Mr. Kyl, Mr. 
        Leahy, Mr. Lieberman, Mr. Lugar, Mr. Martinez, Mr. Menendez, 
        Ms. Mikulski, Ms. Murkowski, Mr. Obama, Mr. Salazar, Mr. 
        Santorum, Mr. Sarbanes, Mr. Smith, Ms. Stabenow, Mr. Sununu, 
        Mr. Voinovich, and Mr. Wyden):
  S.J. Res. 38. A joint resolution approving the renewal of import 
restrictions contained in the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act of 
2003, and for other purposes; to the Committee on Finance.
  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, today, along with my colleagues, 
Senators Feinstein and McCain, I rise to introduce an extension of the 
Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act.
  We are joined by a host of original cosponsors: Senators Frist, Reid, 
Alexander, Allard, Allen, Bennett, Biden, Bingaman, Boxer, Brownback, 
Bunning, Burns, Burr, Chafee, Chambliss, Clinton, Cochran, Collins, 
DeWine, Dole, Domenici, Durbin, Ensign, Feingold, Hagel, Harkin, 
Kennedy, Kerry, Kohl, Kyl, Leahy, Lieberman, Lugar, Martinez, Menendez, 
Mikulski, Murkowski, Obama, Salazar, Santorum, Sarbanes, Smith, 
Stabenow, Sununu, Voinovich, and Wyden.
  This broad bipartisan coalition reflects the overwhelming consensus 
within this body that the issue of freedom in Burma--and the immediate 
threat that that country poses to the entire region--is one of major 
importance. To put it simply, America has a moral obligation to 
continue to stand with the Burmese people against the country's 
dictatorial regime, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC).

[[Page S5391]]

  As many of you know, last year the extension of sanctions was signed 
into law by President Bush on July 27, 2005, and it enjoyed strong 
bipartisan support. It passed the Senate by a vote of 97-1.
  The past year has brought more news from Burma that has ranged from 
the disconcerting to the horrific. First, the SPDC inexplicably decided 
to move the nation's capital from Rangoon to the hinterlands. Thus, 
instead of using state resources for the betterment of the Burmese 
people, who desperately need it, the SPDC will use state funds to build 
a brand new, unneeded capital located deep within the interior.
  Second, Nobel Peace Prize winner Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and scores of 
other prisoners of conscience remain imprisoned by the SPDC. There are 
rumors that she may be released soon, and I hope they prove true.
  Third, last fall the SPDC began a brutal military campaign against 
ethnic minorities, creating thousands of new internally displaced 
persons (IDPs); these thousands to be added to the approximately half 
million already without a home in Burma. Burma has the biggest IDP 
problem in Asia, Mr. President.
  This bill ensures that the United States will not be a party to such 
brutality and oppression. As in the past, the legislation prohibits 
imports into the United States from Burma. The bill also maintains a 
freeze on the assets held by Burmese Government officials in U.S. 
financial institutions. In addition, the bill authorizes the President 
to assist democracy activists dedicated to nonviolent opposition to the 
regime in Burma.
  America is not alone in the effort to promote freedom and democracy 
in that nation. In addition to our allies in Europe, the ASEAN Inter-
Parliamentary Myanmar Caucus, a grouping of members of parliament from 
six countries in ASEAN, just this week issued a strong statement on 
Burma. The group called on the U.N. Security Council to ``adopt[] a 
resolution on Burma that would empower them to intervene in Burma's 
crises. It is time for real action. It is time for a new, democratic 
and peaceful Burma.''
  Clearly, it is time for the Security Council to discuss and debate a 
legally-binding, nonpunitive resolution on Burma that calls for the 
immediate and unconditional release of Suu Kyi and all other political 
prisoners in that country; an end to abuses against minorities 
(including the use of rape as a weapon of war); and the beginning of a 
meaningful national reconciliation process that includes the unfettered 
participation of the National League for Democracy (NLD) and ethnic 
minorities with the SPDC.
  Let me be clear that a briefing on Burma before the U.N. Security 
Council by U.N. Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Ibrahim 
Gambari should not serve as a substitute for a resolution on this 
matter. We need less talk and more action at the U.N. in support of 
democracy, freedom and justice in Burma.
  Let me offer a comment or two about Mr. Gambari's recent visit to 
Burma. I do not share his optimistic view that the SPDC is ready to 
``turn the page.'' In my view, the junta is only interested in 
deflecting and deflating growing pressure by the international 
community to change its repressive ways--and in avoiding the U.N. 
Security Council's consideration of a resolution that addresses the 
threat the SPDC poses to its own people and the entire region. This may 
explain why rumors of Suu Kyi's release abound.
  However, even if Suu Kyi were to be released there is no reason--
absolutely none--for anyone to decrease pressure on the junta. The SPDC 
is to be judged not by what it says--we've certainly heard much of the 
same before--but by what it does. We have yet to see any evidence of 
the formation of a credible reconciliation process that includes the 
full and unfettered participation of the National League for Democracy 
and ethnic nationalities--who, by the way, are being slaughtered and 
raped by an ongoing military offensive waged by the junta.
  I am pleased to be joined by Senators Feinstein, Frist, Brownback, 
Lautenberg, Durbin, Feingold, Mikulski and Lugar in sending a letter to 
President Bush today asking that the United States work to secure a 
resolution at the Security Council as soon as possible.
  Until the SPDC's demonstrates by its actions that it is serious about 
reconciliation and reform in Burma, the international community has no 
choice but to use more sticks--and less carrots--to increase pressure 
on the junta.
  Mrs. FEINSTEIN. Mr. President, I rise today once again with my friend 
and colleague Senator McConnell to introduce legislation to renew the 
ban on all imports from Burma for another year.
  Our legislation also amends the original Burmese Freedom and 
Democracy Act of 2003 to allow the sanctions to be renewed, one year at 
a time, for up to 6 years.
  It is critical that the Congress and the administration send a strong 
signal to the military junta, the State Peace and Development Council, 
that our resolve has not weakened and we are still committed to a free 
and democratic Burma. Unless the SPDC makes ``substantial and 
measurable progress'' towards a true national dialogue on national 
reconciliation and recognition of the results of the 1990 elections--
decisively won by the National League for Democracy--the import ban 
must remain in place.
  Let us review the facts.
  Aung San Suu Kyi, Nobel Peace Prize recipient and leader of the 
National League for Democracy, remains under house arrest. She has 
spent the better part of the past 16 years imprisoned or under house 
arrest.
  The human rights situation in Burma is deplorable and demands a 
clear, unified response from the international community: 1,300 
political prisoners are still in jail; according to a report by the 
Asian human rights group, Assistance Association for Political 
Prisoners, 127 democracy activists have been tortured to death since 
1988; 70,000 child soldiers have been forcibly recruited; the practice 
of rape as a form of repression has been sanctioned by the Burmese 
military; use of forced labor is widespread; human trafficking is 
rampant; and the government engages in the production and distribution 
of opium and methamphetamine.
  Senator McConnell and I coauthored the ``Burmese Freedom and 
Democracy Act of 2003'' which imposed a complete ban on all imports 
from Burma.
  It was overwhelmingly renewed in 2004 and 2005, and now Congress has 
the opportunity to reauthorize the sanctions for one more year.
  But the United States cannot act alone. The United Nations and the 
international community have a vital role to play.
  Along with Senator McConnell and others, we have repeatedly made the 
case that given the numerous human rights abuses, the spread of HIV/
AIDS, the illicit production and trafficking of narcotics, and the 
trafficking of human beings by the military junta, the situation in 
Burma should be referred to the United Nations Security Council for 
debate and appropriate action.
  A recent report by former Czech president Vaclav Havel and retired 
archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa--``Threat to Peace: A Call for 
the UN Security Council to Act on Burma''--confirms the need for U.N. 
intervention. It details how the situation in Burma fulfills each of 
the criteria used for past intervention by the Security Council: 
overthrow of an elected government; armed conflicts with ethnic 
minorities; widespread human right violations; outflow of refugees, 
over 700,000; and drug production and trafficking and the spread of 
HIV/AIDS.

  It is time for the United Nations to act on this report and debate 
and pass a binding, nonpunitive, resolution on Burma that recognizes 
the threat the regime poses to the region and calls for Suu Kyi and all 
prisoners of conscience to be released.
  Some may argue that because Suu Kyi remains under house arrest and 
the Burmese people lack basic human rights and a representative 
government, the sanctions have failed and it is time to lift the import 
ban.
  I could not disagree more.
  First, Aung San Suu Kyi and the democratic opposition continue to 
support a ban on all imports from Burma.
  If we lift this ban now, without any measure of progress towards 
democracy and human rights, we will turn our backs on them and give 
comfort to their oppressors.
  Second, the international community is coming together to put 
pressure on Burma.

[[Page S5392]]

  In July 2005, ASEAN forced Burma to forgo its scheduled rotation as 
chairman of the organization.
  On December 16, 2005, the U.N. Security Council debated the situation 
in Burma for the first time.
  Next week, United Nations Undersecretary for Political Affairs will 
brief members of the Security Council on his meeting with Suu Kyi, her 
first meeting with a foreigner since 2004.
  Why would we turn back now when the military junta is increasingly 
isolated and the plight of the Burmese people is on the agenda of the 
international community?
  Indeed, while we are far from our goal of a free and democratic 
Burma, we are making progress and we should stay the course.
  I remind my colleagues that under the provisions of this legislation, 
we will have the opportunity to debate sanctions on Burma every year. 
That is how it should be.
  Sanctions are not a panacea for every foreign policy dispute. But, 
when they are backed by a robust international response, they can be 
effective and they can compel change.
  Archbishop Desmond Tutu has rightly said, ``As long as [Suu Kyi] 
remains under house arrest, not one of us is truly free''.
  Today I urge the SPDC to release Aung San Suu Kyi, recognize the 1990 
elections, and engage in a true dialogue with the National League for 
Democracy.
  I urge the United Nations Security Council to debate and pass a 
binding, non-punitive resolution on Burma that recognizes the threat 
the regime poses to the region and calls for Suu Kyi and all prisoners 
of conscience to be released.
  And, finally, I urge United States Senate to renew the sanctions on 
Burma for another year.

                          ____________________