PROMOTING DEVELOPMENT OF SOUTHWEST DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA WATERFRONT
(House of Representatives - June 26, 2012)

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[Pages H4001-H4003]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




   PROMOTING DEVELOPMENT OF SOUTHWEST DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA WATERFRONT

  Mr. FARENTHOLD. Madam Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and concur 
in the Senate amendment to the bill (H.R. 2297) to promote the 
development of the Southwest waterfront in the District of Columbia, 
and for other purposes.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The text of the Senate amendment is as follows:

       Senate amendment:
       On page 5, after line 10, add the following:

     SEC. 4. PROJECT FOR NAVIGATION, WASHINGTON CHANNEL, DISTRICT 
                   OF COLUMBIA.

       (a) In General.--The portion of the project for navigation 
     of the Corps of Engineers at Potomac River, Washington 
     Channel, District of Columbia, as authorized by the Act of 
     August 30, 1935 (chapter 831; 49 Stat. 1028), and described 
     in subsection (b), is deauthorized.
       (b) Description of Project.--The deauthorized portion of 
     the project for navigation is as follows: Beginning at 
     Washington Harbor Channel Geometry Centerline of the 400-
     foot-wide main navigational ship channel, Centerline Station 
     No. 103+73.12, coordinates North 441948.20, East 1303969.30, 
     as stated and depicted on the Condition Survey Anacostia, 
     Virginia, Washington and Magazine Bar Shoal Channels, 
     Washington, D.C., Sheet 6 of 6, prepared by the United States 
     Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore district, July 2007; 
     thence departing the

[[Page H4002]]

     aforementioned centerline traveling the following courses and 
     distances: N. 40 degrees 10 minutes 45 seconds E., 200.00 
     feet to a point, on the outline of said 400-foot-wide channel 
     thence binding on said outline the following 3 courses and 
     distances: S. 49 degrees 49 minutes 15 seconds E., 1,507.86 
     feet to a point, thence; S. 29 degrees 44 minutes 42 seconds 
     E., 2,083.17 feet to a point, thence; S. 11 degrees 27 
     minutes 04 seconds E., 363.00 feet to a point, thence; S. 78 
     degrees 32 minutes 56 seconds W., 200.00 feet to a point 
     binding on the centerline of the 400-foot-wide main 
     navigational channel at computed Centerline Station No. 
     65+54.31, coordinates North 438923.9874, East 1306159.9738, 
     thence; continuing with the aforementioned centerline the 
     following courses and distances: N. 11 degrees 27 minutes 04 
     seconds W., 330.80 feet to a point, Centerline Station No. 
     68+85.10, thence; N. 29 degrees 44 minutes 42 seconds W., 
     2,015.56 feet to a point, Centerline Station No. 89+00.67, 
     thence; N. 49 degrees 49 minutes 15 seconds W., 1,472.26 feet 
     to the point of beginning, the area in total containing a 
     computed area of 777,284 square feet or 17.84399 acres of 
     riparian water way.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from 
Texas (Mr. Farenthold) and the gentleman from Missouri (Mr. Clay) each 
will control 20 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Texas.


                             General Leave

  Mr. FARENTHOLD. Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all 
Members may have 5 legislative days in which to revise and extend their 
remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under 
consideration.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from Texas?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. FARENTHOLD. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  I will keep my comments brief. Back in December, the House 
unanimously approved the base text of the legislation before us today, 
H.R. 2297. H.R. 2297 was approved in order to update zoning laws to 
allow the District of Columbia the flexibility to sell or lease real 
property in the Southwest waterfront to a private sector developer. 
There is currently a $2 billion redevelopment plan pending to renovate 
this area, which is only a stone's throw from the U.S. Capitol 
building.

                              {time}  1610

  On March 29, the Senate unanimously approved this legislation with an 
amendment, which is what brings us here today.
  The Senate amendment also concerns the development of the Southwest 
waterfront. It deauthorizes a portion of a 77-year-old navigation 
project in the waterway, essentially transferring jurisdiction from the 
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to the District of Columbia in order for 
the redevelopment project to move forward to help spur economic 
development in the Southwest waterfront area here in Washington, DC.
  The Army Corps of Engineers has reported no concerns with this 
transfer. In addition, Madam Speaker, the Senate's language is 
identical to that of a bill the House unanimously approved last 
Congress.
  The last point I will make is, according to the CBO, there is no 
budgetary cost associated with the bill now before us.
  I'd like to thank the ranking member, Ms. Norton, for working with us 
on this legislation and the Senate for including this important 
amendment.
  I urge my colleagues to support this measure, and I reserve the 
balance of my time.
  Mr. CLAY. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  I want to thank the chairman of the full committee, Mr. Issa, and the 
chair of the subcommittee, Mr. Gowdy, for working closely with our side 
on this bill so that we could get it to the floor today. I also thank 
the ranking member of the full committee, Mr. Cummings, and Mr. Davis, 
the subcommittee ranking member, for their very important consultation.
  H.R. 2297, which was introduced by my friend and colleague, 
Congresswoman Norton, will allow development of the waterfront area in 
Southwest Washington, DC. The bill makes technical changes concerning 
land owned on the Southwest waterfront by the District of Columbia 
since the early 1960s. The legislation that transferred the land to the 
District contained restrictions typical of the pre-Home Rule period.
  H.R. 2297 updates that obsolete legislation to allow for the highest 
and best use of the land. The restrictions serve no Federal purpose. 
However, the unintended effect was to make a wasted asset of land that 
could be productive and revenue- and jobs-producing. The relevant 
Federal agencies have been consulted on H.R. 2297 and have raised no 
objections. The bill will allow mixed-use development on the waterfront 
for the first time. It will create jobs and raise local revenue at a 
time when they are needed most.
  The Federal Government has no interest in the Southwest waterfront 
other than the Maine lobster memorial and the Titanic memorial, which 
the District and the National Park Service have worked together to 
preserve.
  Madam Speaker, the bill expands the types of goods that can be sold 
at the fish market on the waterfront in a market well known in the 
region. This is a noncontroversial bill that removes out-of-date 
restrictions and involves no cost to the Federal Government.
  At this time, I'd like to yield to the gentlewoman from the District 
of Columbia (Ms. Norton) for such time as she may consume.
  Ms. NORTON. Madam Speaker, I have only brief remarks because I want 
to associate myself with the remarks of the gentleman from Texas and 
the gentleman from Missouri and to thank them for bringing this bill 
forward. Special thanks are due to Chairman Darrel Issa and Ranking 
Member Cummings for their considerable assistance on this bill, and for 
two other good friends, Representative Gowdy, the chairman of the 
subcommittee, and Representative Davis, ranking member of the 
subcommittee.
  The bill essentially incorporates technical changes for land that has 
been owned for almost 50 years by the District of Columbia, but land 
transferred in bills during the so-called pre-Home Rule period often 
contained language that is obsolete today and prevents the highest and 
best use.
  Last Congress, the smaller part of this bill, the Washington Channel 
bill, was passed unanimously in committee and on the House floor. The 
channel part of the bill had to be updated because the channel was 
established in the 1800s, when the District of Columbia was a major 
port. This section allows the District now to use the waterfront for 
today's boating and other water activities.
  All the relevant agencies--and I appreciate the work of the Coast 
Guard and the Navy--have signed off on this bill. I particularly 
appreciate the work of the gentleman from Texas and the gentleman from 
Missouri in bringing this bill forward, and Chairman Issa and ranking 
member Cummings of the Oversight and Government Reform bill, once 
again, and its subcommittee leadership as well.
  Mr. CLAY. I urge passage of the bill, and I yield back the balance of 
my time.
  Mr. FARENTHOLD. Madam Speaker, I join with my colleagues in urging 
support of this bipartisan economic growth and jobs bill. It will 
create a vital new area in what is developing as a vibrant part of the 
District of Columbia.
  I urge my colleagues to support H.R. 2297, and I yield back the 
balance of my time.
  Mr. ISSA. Madam Speaker, I include the attached exchange of letters 
between Chairman John Mica of the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure and myself on the Senate amendment to H.R. 2297.

         House of Representatives, Committee on Transportation and 
           Infrastructure,
                                    Washington, DC, June 25, 2012.
     Hon. Darrell Issa,
     Chairman, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, 
         Washington, DC.
       Dear Mr. Chairman: I write concerning the Senate amendment 
     to H.R. 2297. There are certain provisions in the legislation 
     which fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on 
     Transportation and Infrastructure.
       In order to expedite the House's consideration of the 
     Senate amendment to H.R. 2297, the Committee will forgo 
     action on this bill. However, this is conditional on our 
     mutual understanding that forgoing consideration of the bill 
     does not prejudice the Committee's jurisdictional interest 
     and prerogatives on this bill or any other similar 
     legislation and will not be considered as precedent for 
     consideration of matters of jurisdictional interest to the 
     Committee in the future.
       I would appreciate your response to this letter, confirming 
     this understanding, and would request that you include our 
     exchange

[[Page H4003]]

     of letters on this matter in the Congressional Record during 
     consideration of this bill on the House floor.
           Sincerely,
                                                     John L. Mica,
     Chairman.
                                  ____

         House of Representatives, Committee on Oversight and 
           Government Reform,
                                    Washington, DC, June 26, 2012.
     Hon. John L. Mica,
     Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, 
         Washington, DC.
       Dear Mr. Chairman: Thank you for your letter regarding the 
     Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure's 
     jurisdictional interest in the Senate amendment to H.R. 2297, 
     ``To promote the development of the Southwest waterfront in 
     the District of Columbia, and for other purposes,'' and your 
     willingness to forego consideration of the Senate amendment 
     to H.R. 2297 by your committee.
       I agree that the Transportation and Infrastructure 
     Committee has a valid jurisdictional interest in certain 
     provisions of the Senate amendment to H.R. 2297, and that the 
     Committee's jurisdiction will not be adversely affected by 
     your decision to forego consideration of the Senate amendment 
     to H.R. 2297.
       Finally, I will include a copy of your letter and this 
     response in the Congressional Record during the floor 
     consideration of this bill. Thank you again for your 
     cooperation.
           Sincerely,
                                                     Darrell Issa,
                                                         Chairman.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion offered by the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Farenthold) that the House suspend the rules 
and concur in the Senate amendment to the bill, H.R. 2297.
  The question was taken; and (two-thirds being in the affirmative) the 
rules were suspended and the Senate amendment was concurred in.
  A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.

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