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106th Congress Report
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
1st Session 106-195
RUSSIAN FEDERATION FISHERY AGREEMENT
June 22, 1999.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the
State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. Young of Alaska, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 1653]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill
(H.R. 1653) to approve a governing international fishery
agreement between the United States and the Russian Federation,
having considered the same, report favorably thereon without
amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.
PURPOSE OF THE BILL
The purpose of H.R. 1653 is to approve a governing
international fisheries agreement between the United States and
the Russian Federation.
BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION
The United States and Russian Federation maintain the
bilateral Intergovernmental Consultative Committee (ICC)
fisheries forum pursuant to the U.S.-Soviet Comprehensive
Fisheries Agreement, signed on May 31, 1988. The ICC is
responsible for furthering the objectives of the Comprehensive
Fisheries Agreement. The objectives of the Agreement include
maintaining a mutually beneficial and equitable fisheries
relationship through cooperative scientific research and
exchanges; reciprocal allocation of surplus fish within the
respective 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs), consistent
with national laws; cooperation and the establishment of joint
fishing ventures; general consultations on fisheries matters of
mutual concern; and cooperation to address illegal fishing on
the high seas of the North Pacific and the Bering Sea.
The first meeting of the ICC was held in Washington, D.C.,
in February 1989. Through the ICC forum, the U.S. and Russia
have developed or coordinated the development of multilateral
international conventions designed to address major fisheries
conservation problems in the North Pacific Ocean and associated
seas. The Convention for the Conservation of Anadromous Stocks
in the North Pacific Ocean brought an end to the last legal
high seas salmon fishery in the world and was developed through
the ICC forum. In addition, the two countries signed an
agreement to govern the harvest of salmon stocks within their
EEZs. Among other things, this agreement restricts salmon
fisheries to within 25 nautical miles of the countries'
respective coastlines. This agreement went into effect in
September 1992. The two countries have also cooperated on
addressing the conservation of pollock and other species.
The most recent ICC meeting was held in January 1999, in
Seattle, Washington. One issue which was raised at this meeting
concerns the interception of U.S.-origin salmon in Russian
waters by either Russian or Japanese vessels.
The ICC forum has allowed the U.S. industry the opportunity
to enter into harvesting, marketing, processing and other
commercial fishing ventures with the Russian industry in the
The original U.S.-Soviet Comprehensive Fisheries Agreement
was authorized as a Governing International Fishery Agreement
(GIFA) for the period of 1988-1993. In 1993, the Agreement was
extended, by diplomatic notes, until December 31, 1998. GIFAs
go into effect in one of two ways. Congress can pass
legislation which specifically authorizes the GIFA or if
Congress does not act, the GIFA goes into effect 120 days
(excluding any days when the Congress is adjourned sine die)
after the President transmits to the GIFA to Congress. H.R.
1653 approves the U.S.-Russia GIFA to allow continued
participation in the ICC.
H.R. 1653 was introduced by request on April 29, 1999, by
Congressmen Don Young (R-AK), Jim Saxton (R-NJ), and Eni
Faleomavaega (D-AS). The bill was referred to the Committee on
Resources, and within the Committee to the Subcommittee on
Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife and Oceans. On March 11, 1999,
the Subcommittee held a hearing where the merits of the U.S.-
Soviet Comprehensive Fishery Agreement was discussed.
Administration testified in support of this Agreement. On May
6, 1999, the Subcommittee met to mark up the bill. No
amendments were offered and it was ordered favorably reported
to the Full Committee by voice vote. On June 9, 1999, the Full
Resources Committee met to consider the bill. No amendments
were offered and the bill was ordered favorably reported to the
House of Representatives by unanimous consent.
COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the
Committee on Resources' oversight findings and recommendations
are reflected in the body of this report.
CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT
Article I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United
States grants Congress the authority to enact this bill.
COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII
1. Cost of Legislation.--Clause 3(d)(2) of rule XIII of the
Rules of the House of Representatives requires an estimate and
a comparison by the Committee of the costs which would be
incurred in carrying out this bill. However, clause 3(d)(3)(B)
of that Rule provides that this requirement does not apply when
the Committee has included in its report a timely submitted
cost estimate of the bill prepared by the Director of the
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
2. Congressional Budget Act.--As required by clause 3(c)(2)
of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, this
bill does not contain any new budget authority, spending
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in
revenues or tax expenditures.
3. Government Reform Oversight Findings.--Under clause
3(c)(4) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of
Representatives, the Committee has received no report of
oversight findings and recommendations from the Committee on
Government Reform on this bill.
4. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate.--Under clause
3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of
Representatives and section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act
of 1974, the Committee has received the following cost estimate
for this bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget
Congressional Budget Office,
Washington, DC, June 17, 1999.
Hon. Don Young,
Chairman, Committee on Resources,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 1653, a bill to
approve a governing international fishery agreement between the
United States and the Russian Federation.
If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Deborah Reis.
Barry B. Anderson
(For Dan L. Crippen, Director).
congressional budget office cost estimate
H.R. 1653--A bill to approve a governing international fishery
agreement between the United States and the Russian Federation
H.R. 1633 would approve a fishing agreement between the
United States and the Russian Federation. CBO estimates that
enacting the bill would have no budgetary impact. H.R. 1653
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as
defined the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would have no
significant impact on the budgets of state, local, or tribal
The agreement with the Russian Federation provides for
cooperating on scientific research and exchanges, allocating
surplus fish within exclusive economic zones, establishing
joint fishing ventures, consulting on fisheries matters of
mutual concern, and cooperating to address illegal fishing on
the high seas of the North Pacific and the Bering Sea. The
Congress may pass legislation specifically authorizing the
agreement or, if the Congress does not act, the agreement will
go into effect 120 days after the President transmits the
agreement to the Congress.
The CBO staff contacts is Deborah Reis. The estimate was
approved by Robert A. Sunshine, Deputy Assistant Director for
COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 104-4
This bill contains no unfunded mandates.
PREEMPTION OF STATE, LOCAL OR TRIBAL LAW
This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or
CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW
If enacted, this bill would make no changes in existing