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108th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                     108-520

======================================================================



 
    EXCLUSION OF NONNATIVE SPECIES FROM MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT; 
              CONSERVATION OF NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRDS

                                _______
                                

  June 3, 2004.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

  Mr. Pombo, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 4114]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 4114) to amend the Migratory Bird Treaty Act to exclude 
non-native migratory bird species from the application of that 
Act, and for other purposes, having considered the same, report 
favorably thereon with an amendment and recommend that the bill 
as amended do pass.
  The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

 TITLE I--EXCLUSION OF NONNATIVE SPECIES FROM MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT

SEC. 101. SHORT TITLE.

  This title may be cited as the ``Migratory Bird Treaty Reform Act of 
2004''.

SEC. 102. EXCLUSION OF NON-NATIVE SPECIES FROM APPLICATION OF CERTAIN 
                    PROHIBITIONS UNDER MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT.

  Section 2 of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (16 U.S.C. 703) is 
amended--
          (1) in the first sentence by striking ``That unless and 
        except as permitted'' and inserting the following: ``(a) In 
        General.--Unless and except as permitted''; and
          (2) by adding at the end the following:
  ``(b) Limitation on Application to Introduced Species.--
          ``(1) In general.--This section applies only to migratory 
        bird species that are native to the United States and whose 
        occurrence in the United States is entirely the result of 
        natural biological or ecological conditions.
          ``(2) Treatment of introduced species.--For purposes of 
        paragraph (1)--
                  ``(A) a bird species shall not be treated as native 
                to the United States if it occurs in the United States 
                solely as a result of intentional or unintentional 
                human-assisted introduction; and
                  ``(B) a migratory bird species shall be treated as 
                native to the United States if--
                          ``(i) it was native to the United States and 
                        extant in 1918;
                          ``(ii) it was extirpated after 1918 
                        throughout its range in the United States; and
                          ``(iii) after such extirpation, it was 
                        reintroduced in the United States as a part of 
                        a program carried out by a Federal agency.''.

SEC. 103. PUBLICATION OF LIST.

  The Secretary of the Interior shall publish in the Federal Register 
within 3 months after the date of enactment of this Act a list of all 
non-native, human introduced bird species to which the Migratory Bird 
Treaty Act does not apply that belong to biological families of 
migratory birds covered under any of the migratory bird conventions 
with Great Britain (for Canada), Mexico, Russia, or Japan. The 
Secretary shall provide adequate time for public comment. Nothing in 
this section concerning the publication of the list shall delay 
implementation of other provisions of this Act that exclude non-native, 
human introduced bird species from the application of the Migratory 
Bird Treaty Act.

         TITLE II--CONSERVATION OF NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRDS

SEC. 201. SHORT TITLE.

  This title may be cited as the ``Neotropical Migratory Bird 
Conservation Improvement Act of 2004''.

SEC. 202. AMENDMENTS TO NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRD CONSERVATION ACT.

  (a) Findings.--Section 2(1) of the Neotropical Migratory Bird 
Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 6101(1)) is amended by inserting ``but 
breed in Canada and the United States'' after ``the Caribbean''.
  (b) Purposes.--Section 3(2) of the Neotropical Migratory Bird 
Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 6102(2)) is amended by inserting 
``Canada,'' after ``United States,''.
  (c) Definition of Caribbean.--Section 4 of the Neotropical Migratory 
Bird Conservation Act is amended by redesignating paragraphs (2) and 
(3) in order or paragraphs (3) and (4), and by inserting paragraph (1) 
the following:
          ``(2) Caribbean.--The term `Caribbean' includes Puerto Rico 
        and the United States Virgin Islands.''.
  (d) Cost Sharing.--Section 5(e) of the Neotropical Migratory Bird 
Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 6104(e)) is amended--
          (1) in paragraph (1) by striking ``25 percent'' and inserting 
        ``50 percent''; and
          (2) in paragraph (2) by amending subparagraph (B) to read as 
        follows:
                  ``(B) Form of payment.--
                          ``(i) Projects in the united states and 
                        canada.--The non-Federal share required to be 
                        paid for a project carried out in the United 
                        States or Canada shall be paid in cash.
                          ``(ii) Projects in latin america and the 
                        caribbean.--The non-Federal share required to 
                        be paid for a project carried out in Latin 
                        America or the Caribbean may be paid in cash or 
                        in kind.''.
  (e) Report.--Section 8 of the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation 
Act (16 U.S.C. 6107) is amended--
          (1) by striking ``October 1, 2002,'' and inserting ``12 
        months after the date of the enactment of the Neotropical 
        Migratory Bird Conservation Improvement Act of 2004,''; and
          (2) by inserting before the period the following: ``, and a 
        description of the activities of the advisory committee 
        convened under section 7(b)''.
  (f) Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Fund.--
          (1) In general.-- Section 9 of the Neotropical Migratory Bird 
        Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 6108) is amended by striking so 
        much as precedes subsection (c) and inserting the following:

``SEC. 9. NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRD CONSERVATION FUND.

  ``(a) Establishment.--There is established in the Treasury a separate 
account, which shall be known as the `Neotropical Migratory Bird 
Conservation Fund'. The Fund shall consist of amounts deposited into 
the Fund by the Secretary of the Treasury under subsection (b).
  ``(b)  Deposits Into the Fund.--The Secretary of the Treasury shall 
deposit into the Fund--
          ``(1) all amounts received by the Secretary in the form of 
        donations under subsection (d); and
          ``(2) other amounts appropriated to the Fund.''.
          (2) Administrative expenses.--Section 9(c)(2) of the 
        Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 
        6108(c)(2)) is amended by striking ``$80,000'' and inserting 
        ``$150,000''.
          (3) Conforming amendments.--The Neotropical Migratory Bird 
        Conservation Act is amended as follows:
                  (A) In section 4 (16 U.S.C. 6103), by striking 
                paragraph (1) and inserting the following:
          ``(1) Fund.--The term `Fund' means the Neotropical Migratory 
        Bird Conservation Fund established by section 9(a).''.
                  (B) In section 9(d) (16 U.S.C. 6108(d)), by striking 
                ``Account'' and inserting ``Fund''.
          (4) Transfer.--The Secretary of the Treasury may transfer to 
        the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Fund amounts that 
        were in the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Account 
        immediately before the enactment of this Act.
  (g) Authorization of Appropriations.--Section 10 of the Neotropical 
Migratory Bird Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 6109) is amended to read as 
follows:

``SEC. 10. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  ``(a) In General.--There is authorized to be appropriated to the Fund 
to carry out this Act the following amounts:
          ``(1) $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2005.
          ``(2) $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2006.
          ``(3) $10,000,000 for fiscal year 2007.
          ``(4) $15,000,000 for fiscal year 2008.
  ``(b) Availability.--Amounts appropriated under this section may 
remain available until expended.
  ``(c) Allocation.--Of amounts appropriated under this section for 
each fiscal year, not less than 75 percent shall be expended for 
projects carried out outside the United States.
  ``(d) Limitation on Expenditures for Projects in Canada.--Amounts 
appropriated under this section for a fiscal year may not be used for 
any project in Canada unless the amount available to carry out this Act 
for that fiscal year is greater than $10,000,000.''.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of H.R. 4114 is to amend the Migratory Bird 
Treaty Act to exclude non-native migratory bird species from 
the application of that Act, and for other purposes.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    In 1916, the United States and Great Britain (for Canada) 
signed a treaty known as the Convention for the Protection of 
Migratory Birds. The United States is now party to separate 
bilateral conventions for the conservation and protection of 
migratory birds with Canada, Japan, Mexico and Russia. The 
fundamental goal of all these agreements was to establish an 
international framework for the protection and conservation of 
migratory birds that seasonally migrate among the member 
nations. The Conventions with Japan and Russia clearly list 
individual species of birds that are protected. By contrast, 
the Conventions with Canada and Mexico introduce some confusion 
by merely listing protected families of birds; these 
Conventions do not expressly state whether they apply to all 
species within the designated families or just to those species 
that are native to the territory of the parties.
    Under the Canadian and Mexico Conventions, the term 
``migratory bird'' includes a number of bird families such as 
Anatidae, Gruidae, Rallidae, Limicolae and Columbidae. 
Specifically, covered native species include brants, coots, 
cormorants, crows, gallinules, geese, gulls, mourning doves, 
rails, robins, snipes, swans, white-winged doves, whooping 
cranes, wild pigeons, wild species of ducks, and woodcocks. 
This is, however, not a complete list of protected bird 
species.
    In 1918, Congress passed the Migratory Bird Treaty Act 
(MBTA, 16 U.S.C. 703-712) to implement the first Convention for 
the Protection of Migratory Birds. This landmark statute became 
the domestic law implementing all the international Conventions 
and it committed the United States to the protection and 
management of migratory birds. In addition, the MBTA gave the 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) authority to develop 
conservation plans and issue regulations on the harvest or 
``take'' of migratory game birds and other migratory bird 
species causing economic damage or human health problems. In 
the 86 years since the enactment of the MBTA, the USFWS has 
promulgated regulations on the circumstances under which 
protected species may be taken and how these native species and 
their habitat will be protected.
    Some bird species are biologically hard-wired to migrate, 
including neotropical migrant species like hummingbirds, 
warblers, shorebirds, and certain waterfowl species. Other 
birds may seasonally migrate shorter distances such as robins 
and crows. The MBTA does not define ``migratory'' and both 
obligant and nonobligant migratory species are included. The 
provisions of the MBTA have not included native, non-migratory 
game birds, like quail and turkey. Also the MBTA does not 
differentiate between native and exotic species. Species 
considered ``exotic'' include those intentionally introduced or 
accidentally released from captivity. Currently, the USFWS 
recognizes 832 species of native, non-introduced migratory 
birds in the U.S., 58 of them hunted game species.
    Neither the international Conventions nor Congress in 
crafting the MBTA anticipated the presence of non-native bird 
species in the wild. In fact, until 2001, official federal 
policy treated non-native bird species as outside the MBTA and 
under the jurisdiction of the States. However, in 2001 a 
federal appeals court held for the first time that a non-native 
human- introduced species (in this case the mute swan) was 
covered by the MBTA. In Hill v. Norton,\1\ the court reasoned 
that because the MBTA included taxonomic families of birds 
represented by species native to the United States, the MBTA's 
protection extended to all members of those families. This 
ruling had the effect of making the USFWS responsible for the 
conservation of all members of the family Anatidae (ducks, 
swans, and geese), including the non-native mute swan. The 
ruling also removed State authority to manage mute swans 
without federal permits.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\ 275 F.3d 98 (D.C. Cir. 2001).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Mute swans are among the Nation's largest bird species and 
are entirely non-migratory. Growing populations of mute swans 
in the Great Lakes and mid-Atlantic regions have conflicted 
with both the conservation of native avian species and habitats 
and with human use of shorelines. Mute swans can consume up to 
eight pounds per day of submerged aquatic vegetation critical 
to both avian and fish species. State fish and wildlife 
agencies have been working to control mute swans for over 20 
years amid growing controversy. The State of Maryland, after an 
extensive public participation process, developed a five-year 
management plan for the species which included lethal removal 
of adult birds. Although this practice was occurring regularly 
and unchallenged in neighboring States,\2\ a national 
controversy was generated over the Maryland management plan by 
animal welfare interests.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \2\ In 2002, USFWS issued 66 permits for the take of 1,758 mute 
swans. In 2003, the agency had issued 66 permits for the take of 3,605 
mute swans.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The State of Maryland applied to the USFWS for a permit to 
implement the plan. After preparing an Environmental Assessment 
under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) which 
covered mute swan management in the Atlantic flyway, the USFWS 
issued to Maryland a permit to lethally remove up to 525 mute 
swans. Consequently, USFWS' permit decision was challenged in 
federal court, and on September 9, 2003, the District of 
Columbia District Court issued an injunction, halting Maryland 
from implementing its permit and concluding that the USFWS must 
prepare an Environmental Impact Statement under NEPA before 
issuing any additional mute swan permits.\3\ Incredibly, this 
multi-year and multi-million dollar process would, under the 
MBTA, be undertaken with the goal of conservation of healthy 
mute swan populations in the United States.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \3\ Fund for Animals v. Norton, Civil Action No. ECF 03-1710; 
Kathryn Burton v. Norton, Civil Action No. ECF 03-1102 (D. D.C. 
September 9, 2003) (memorandum opinion).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    The decision in Hill has far-reaching consequences beyond 
mute swans. Under the rationale expressed by the court, any 
non-native, human-introduced bird species within a taxonomic 
family represented by native U.S. bird species could now be 
protected by the MBTA.The introduction of non-native birds is a 
growing problem, with additional species being detected annually.
    Although most introduced species never become established 
in the wild, 19 non-native bird species that belong to MBTA-
protected families are known to have established self-
sustaining populations in the U.S. While most of these species 
have rather restricted ranges, the mute swan, pigeon, and 
European starling are most broadly distributed across the 
continental United States. These non-native birds, like other 
alien species, compete with native birds, damage other natural 
resources, and impose economic costs. For example, rock doves 
or pigeons are long-lived birds, native to Europe and Asia, 
introduced into the U.S. by American colonists as early as 
1621. Although there are no firm population figures for pigeons 
in the U.S., they are the single-most destructive bird in the 
United States. It has been estimated that they account for up 
to $1.1 billion in damages annually to private and public 
property. Their droppings deface and accelerate the 
deterioration of buildings and significantly increase 
maintenance costs. Furthermore, invasive pigeons are reservoirs 
and vectors for over 50 human and livestock diseases.
    H.R. 4114 would amend the Migratory Bird Treaty Act to 
clarify that the provisions of that Act apply only to species 
native to the United States, Canada, and Mexico (the species 
covered by the Conventions with Japan and Russia are all native 
to the United States). There is no historical indication that 
the United States, Canada, and Mexico ever intended for the 
Conventions to apply to human-introduced species not native to 
the party countries. The proposed change is also consistent 
with Executive Order 13112 (Invasive Species), which directs 
the federal government to ``prevent the introduction of 
invasive species and provide for their control and to minimize 
the economic, ecological, and human health impacts that 
invasive species cause.'' The fundamental goals of the bill are 
to restore a nearly century-old policy that reserves the 
application of the MBTA to native avian species that have not 
been introduced by humans, to allow the States to retain 
primacy over wildlife management, and to allow federal, State 
and local governments and private individuals to concentrate on 
the conservation of true native bird species. H.R. 4114 also 
ensures that any native species extant in the U.S. in 1918 when 
the MBTA was enacted, and then extirpated from the U.S. and 
reintroduced as part of a federal restoration effort, would be 
covered by the MBTA.

                            Committee Action

    H.R. 4114 was introduced by Congressman Wayne T. Gilchrest 
(R-MD) on April 1, 2004. The bill was referred to the Committee 
on Resources and within the Committee to the Subcommittee on 
Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife and Oceans. On April 22, 2004, 
the Subcommittee met to mark up the bill. No amendments were 
offered and the bill was ordered favorably reported to the Full 
Committee by voice vote. On May 5, 2004, the Full Resources 
Committee met to consider the bill. Congressman Ron Kind (D-WI) 
offered an amendment in the nature of a substitute that 
established a new Title II of the bill reauthorizing and 
modifying certain provisions of the Neotropical Migratory Bird 
Conservation Act of 2000. This law allowed the Secretary of the 
Interior to make grants for the conservation of migratory birds 
primarily in Latin America and the Caribbean. The amendment was 
adopted by voice vote. The bill, as amended, was then ordered 
favorably reported to the House of Representatives by voice 
vote.

            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. General Performance Goals and Objectives. As required by 
clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general performance goal or 
objective of this bill is to amend the Migratory Bird Treaty 
Act to exclude non-native migratory bird species from the 
application of that Act, and for other purposes.
    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 
Office:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                      Washington, DC, May 27, 2004.
Hon. Richard W. Pombo,
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. 4114, the 
Migratory Bird Treaty Reform Act of 2004.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Deborah Reis.
            Sincerely,
                                      Elizabeth M. Robinson
                                         (For Douglas Holtz-Eakin).
    Enclosure.

H.R. 4114--Migratory Bird Treaty Reform Act of 2004

    Summary: H.R. 4114 would amend the Migratory Bird Treaty 
Act to clarify that only species that are native to the United 
States are protected under that act, which governs the 
conservation of migratory birds. Title II of the bill would 
reauthorize funding for projects carried out under the 
Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act through fiscal year 
2008. (The current authorization to fund this program expires 
after fiscal year 2005.) The Secretary of the Interior uses 
this funding primarily to help finance research and 
conservation programs in North and South America.
    Assuming appropriation of the authorized amounts, CBO 
estimates that implementing title II would cost $30 million 
over the 2006-2009 period. We estimate that enacting title I 
would have no significant effect on the federal budget. 
Enacting the legislation would not affect direct spending or 
receipts. H.R. 4114 contains no intergovernmental or private-
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act 
(UMRA) and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal 
government.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 4114 is shown in the following table. 
For this estimate, CBO assumes that the entire amounts 
authorized by the bill will be appropriated for each fiscal 
year. Outlay estimates are based on recent spending patterns 
for conservation programs. The cost of this legislation falls 
within budget function 300 (natural resources and environment).

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 By fiscal year, in millions of dollars-
                               -----------------------------------------
                                 2004   2005   2006   2007   2008   2009
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                    SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION

Spending under current law for
 neotropical bird conservation
 programs:
    Authorization level \1\...      4      5      0      0      0      0
    Estimated outlays.........      4      5      1      0      0      0
Proposed changes:
    Authorization level.......      0      0      5     10     15      0
    Estimated outlays.........      0      0      4      7     10      9
Spending under H.R. 4114 for
 neotropical bird conservation
 programs:
    Authorization level \1\...      4      5      5     10     15      0
    Estimated outlays.........      4      5      5      7     10      9
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ The 2004 level is the amount appropriated for that year for
  neotropical migratory bird conservation. The 2005 level is the amount
  authorized under current law.

    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: H.R. 4114 
contains no intergovnermental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would impose no costs on state, local, or 
tribal governments.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Deboarh Reis. Impact 
on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Majorie Miller. Impact 
on the Private Sector: Selena Caldera.
    Estimate approved by: Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                    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 
tribal law.

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by 
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law 
proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new 
matter is printed in italic, existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman):

               SECTION 2 OF THE MIGRATORY BIRD TREATY ACT

  Sec. 2. [That unless and except as permitted] (a) In 
General.--Unless and except as permitted by regulations made as 
hereinafter provided, it shall be unlawful at any time, by any 
means or in any manner, to pursue, hunt, take, capture, kill, 
attempt to take, capture, or kill, possess, offer for sale, 
sell, offer to barter, barter, offer to purchase, purchase, 
deliver for shipment, ship, export, import, cause to be 
shipped, exported, or imported, deliver for transportation, 
transport or cause to be transported, carry or cause to be 
carried, or receive for shipment, transportation, carriage, or 
export, any migratory bird, any part, nest, or egg of any such 
bird, or any product, whether or not manufactured, which 
consists, or is composed in whole or part, of any such bird or 
any part, nest, or egg thereof, included in the terms of the 
conventions between the United States and Great Britain for the 
protection of migratory birds concluded August 16, 1916, the 
United States and the United Mexican States for the protection 
of migratory birds and game mammals concluded February 7, 1936, 
the United States and the Government of Japan for the 
protection of migratory birds and birds in danger of 
extinction, and their environment concluded March 4, 1972 and 
the convention between the United States and the Union of 
Soviet Socialist Republics for the conservation of migratory 
birds and their environments concluded November 19, 1976.
  (b) Limitation on Application to Introduced Species.--
          (1) In general.--This section applies only to 
        migratory bird species that are native to the United 
        States and whose occurrence in the United States is 
        entirely the result of natural biological or ecological 
        conditions.
          (2) Treatment of introduced species.--For purposes of 
        paragraph (1)--
                  (A) a bird species shall not be treated as 
                native to the United States if it occurs in the 
                United States solely as a result of intentional 
                or unintentional human-assisted introduction; 
                and
                  (B) a migratory bird species shall be treated 
                as native to the United States if--
                          (i) it was native to the United 
                        States and extant in 1918;
                          (ii) it was extirpated after 1918 
                        throughout its range in the United 
                        States; and
                          (iii) after such extirpation, it was 
                        reintroduced in the United States as a 
                        part of a program carried out by a 
                        Federal agency.
                              ----------                              


NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRD CONSERVATION ACT

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

  Congress finds that--
          (1) of the nearly 800 bird species known to occur in 
        the United States, approximately 500 migrate among 
        countries, and the large majority of those species, the 
        neotropical migrants, winter in Latin America and the 
        Caribbean but breed in Canada and the United States;

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 3. PURPOSES.

  The purposes of this Act are--
          (1) * * *
          (2) to assist in the conservation of neotropical 
        migratory birds by supporting conservation initiatives 
        in the United States, Canada, Latin America, and the 
        Caribbean; and

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 4. DEFINITIONS.

  In this Act:
          [(1) Account.--The term ``Account'' means the 
        Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Account 
        established by section 9(a).]
          (1) Fund.--The term ``Fund'' means the Neotropical 
        Migratory Bird Conservation Fund established by section 
        9(a).
          (2) Caribbean.--The term ``Caribbean'' includes 
        Puerto Rico and the United States Virgin Islands.
          [(2)] (3) Conservation.--The term ``conservation'' 
        means the use of methods and procedures necessary to 
        bring a species of neotropical migratory bird to the 
        point at which there are sufficient populations in the 
        wild to ensure the long-term viability of the species, 
        including--
                  (A) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

          [(3)] (4) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means 
        the Secretary of the Interior.

SEC. 5. FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE.

  (a) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (e) Cost Sharing.--
          (1) Federal share.--The Federal share of the cost of 
        each project shall be not greater than [25] 50 percent.
          (2) Non-federal share.--
                  (A) * * *
                  [(B) Form of payment.--
                          [(i) Projects in the united states.--
                        The non-Federal share required to be 
                        paid for a project carried out in the 
                        United States shall be paid in cash.
                          [(ii) Projects in foreign 
                        countries.--The non-Federal share 
                        required to be paid for a project 
                        carried out in a foreign country may be 
                        paid in cash or in kind.]
                  (B) Form of payment.--
                          (i) Projects in the united states and 
                        canada.--The non-Federal share required 
                        to be paid for a project carried out in 
                        the United States or Canada shall be 
                        paid in cash.
                          (ii) Projects in latin america and 
                        the caribbean.--The non-Federal share 
                        required to be paid for a project 
                        carried out in Latin America or the 
                        Caribbean may be paid in cash or in 
                        kind.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 8. REPORT TO CONGRESS.

  Not later than [October 1, 2002,] 12 months after the date of 
the enactment of the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation 
Improvement Act of 2004, the Secretary shall submit to Congress 
a report on the results and effectiveness of the program 
carried out under this Act, including recommendations 
concerning how the Act might be improved and whether the 
program should be continued, and a description of the 
activities of the advisory committee convened under section 
7(b).

[SEC. 9. NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRD CONSERVATION ACCOUNT.

  [(a) Establishment.--There is established in the 
Multinational Species Conservation Fund of the Treasury a 
separate account to be known as the ``Neotropical Migratory 
Bird Conservation Account'', which shall consist of amounts 
deposited into the Account by the Secretary of the Treasury 
under subsection (b).
  [(b) Deposits Into the Account.--The Secretary of the 
Treasury shall deposit into the Account--
          [(1) all amounts received by the Secretary in the 
        form of donations under subsection (d); and
          [(2) other amounts appropriated to the Account.]

SEC. 9. NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRD CONSERVATION FUND.

  (a) Establishment.--There is established in the Treasury a 
separate account, which shall be known as the ``Neotropical 
Migratory Bird Conservation Fund''. The Fund shall consist of 
amounts deposited into the Fund by the Secretary of the 
Treasury under subsection (b).
  (b)  Deposits Into the Fund.--The Secretary of the Treasury 
shall deposit into the Fund--
          (1) all amounts received by the Secretary in the form 
        of donations under subsection (d); and
          (2) other amounts appropriated to the Fund.
  (c) Use.--
          (1) * * *
          (2) Administrative expenses.--Of amounts in the 
        Account available for each fiscal year, the Secretary 
        may expend not more than 3 percent or up to [$80,000] 
        $150,000, whichever is greater, to pay the 
        administrative expenses necessary to carry out this 
        Act.
  (d) Acceptance and Use of Donations.--The Secretary may 
accept and use donations to carry out this Act. Amounts 
received by the Secretary in the form of donations shall be 
transferred to the Secretary of the Treasury for deposit into 
the [Account] Fund.

[SEC. 10. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  [There is authorized to be appropriated to the Account to 
carry out this Act $5,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2001 
through 2005, to remain available until expended, of which not 
less than 75 percent of the amounts made available for each 
fiscal year shall be expended for projects carried out outside 
the United States.]

SEC. 10. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  (a) In General.--There is authorized to be appropriated to 
the Fund to carry out this Act the following amounts:
          (1) $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2005.
          (2) $5,000,000 for fiscal year 2006.
          (3) $10,000,000 for fiscal year 2007.
          (4) $15,000,000 for fiscal year 2008.
  (b) Availability.--Amounts appropriated under this section 
may remain available until expended.
  (c) Allocation.--Of amounts appropriated under this section 
for each fiscal year, not less than 75 percent shall be 
expended for projects carried out outside the United States.
  (d) Limitation on Expenditures for Projects in Canada.--
Amounts appropriated under this section for a fiscal year may 
not be used for any project in Canada unless the amount 
available to carry out this Act for that fiscal year is greater 
than $10,000,000.

                            ADDITIONAL VIEWS

    The Committee approved a substitute amendment to H.R. 4114 
that included as Title II a reauthorization of the Neotropical 
Migratory Bird Conservation Act (NMBCA). Because over one-
quarter of U.S. native bird species are either listed as 
threatened or endangered by extinction or expected to attain 
that status, the committee agreed that it was appropriate to 
re-authorize this important bird conservation statute before it 
expired in Fiscal Year 2005.
    NMBCA was enacted by Congress and signed into law by the 
President on July 20, 2000 as Public Law 106-247. Congress 
found that most of the avian species in the U.S. migrate among 
countries, and the large majority--the neotropical migratory 
birds--winter in Latin America and the Caribbean. Many of these 
birds provide invaluable environmental, economic, recreational, 
and aesthetic benefits; but their populations are in decline 
and their long-term survival is in doubt without conservation 
assistance. Therefore, the Act established a matching grant 
program to fund projects that promote the conservation of 
migratory birds in the United States, Latin America, and the 
Caribbean. Eligible projects for this grant include activities 
to benefit bird populations and their habitats, research and 
monitoring, law enforcement, and outreach and education. All 
grant requests must be matched by non-U.S. Federal funds by at 
least a 3:1 ratio. Eligible proposals are reviewed by a diverse 
panel of experts from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 
(Service), who then make recommendations for project funding to 
the Service's Director. The Director then approves projects on 
behalf of the Secretary of the Interior.
    Interest in the program has been significant from its 
inception. Grant requests received for the periods between 
Fiscal Years 2002-2004 represented 579 projects totaling more 
than $225 million in proposed conservation projects. In Fiscal 
Year (FY) 2002, the Service received 280 proposals requesting a 
total of $24 million. Of those, the Director selected 32 
projects for grants totaling $2.9 million. In FY 2003, 150 
proposals were submitted, requesting a total of $12 million. 
The Director selected 37 projects for a total of $2.9 million 
in grant funds. In both years, many more qualifying proposals 
were received than could be funded. Projects are located in 19 
countries, including the United States, and eight are multi-
national in scope. Congress appropriated $4 million for this 
program in FY2004. Following a January 16, 2004 deadline, the 
Service received 139 proposals (30 from the US) having project 
activities in 28 countries (including a number of multi-country 
proposals), requesting about $12 million in grants. These 
requested funds were matched by $39.06 million, almost a 4 to 1 
match ratio.
    Despite this record of achievement there remains a 
desperate need for the funding and infrastructure to assure the 
implementation of projects to promote comprehensive habitat 
conservation management and protection. In addition, 
coordination among the federal, state, and local governments 
and the private sector, comprehensive monitoring programs, and 
integration of sound science into management decisions need 
support. Because of a lack of funding, in FY '03 alone, 113 
projects were turned down for $8.7 million, leaving over $20.2 
million in matching funds on the table.
    The money that Congress has appropriated for the NMBCA has 
been more than quadrupled by matching funds for such critical 
projects, including those that protect, restore, and manage 
habitat for migratory birds and other wildlife. Bird 
conservation investments in the U.S. will not be effective 
without making investments to conserve these migratory species 
throughout their hemispheric range.
    The re-authorization of the NMBCA in Title II will assist 
in addressing persistent threats to neotropical migratory birds 
during their breeding and migration in North America as well as 
during their migration and over-wintering in South America and 
the Caribbean. The purposes of NMBCA would remain the same: to 
perpetuate healthy populations of neotropical migratory birds 
by supporting, through financial assistance, conservation 
initiatives in the United States, Latin America, and the 
Caribbean. Title II would continue to provide grants for the 
conservation of migratory birds in range states, as well as 
within the U.S. Authorizations for grant-funding would be 
raised from the current level of $5 million to $10 million in 
FY 2007 and to $15 million in FY 2008. Matching requirements 
would be lowered from 3:1 to 1:1 to allow greater 
participation. The existing requirement that at least 75% must 
go for projects in Latin America and the Caribbean would remain 
unchanged. Also, projects in Canada would now be eligible in 
any fiscal year where amounts appropriated for the program 
exceed $10 million. A slight increase would also be allowed for 
the Service to administer the program.
    Ironically, the population declines of many migratory bird 
species come at a time when bird-related recreation in the U.S. 
is hitting an all-time high in popularity. The National Survey 
on Recreation and the Environment tallies 71 million Americans 
participating in some form of bird-related activities in 2001. 
According to the 2001 U.S. FWS report, Birding in the U.S.: A 
Demographic and Economic Analysis, bird-related expenditures 
added $85 billion in overall economic impacts, generated $13 
billion in state and federal income taxes, and created 863,406 
jobs. Hunting migratory birds contributed $1.4 billion in 
direct expenditures. Clearly, birding is big business, and the 
health and protection of birds, an important issue in many 
parts of our country.
    The passage, full-funding, and implementation of the NMBCA 
amendments contained in Title II of H.R. 4114 could help 
prevent further declines in many avian species. The Committee 
believed it was important to re-authorize this important bird 
conservation measure in this Congress and I commend them for 
supporting this effort.
                                                          Ron Kind.