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108th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session                                                     108-282

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

                                                       Calendar No. 589


 SERVITUDE AND EMANCIPATION ARCHIVAL RESEARCH CLEARINGHOUSE ACT OF 2003

                               __________

                              R E P O R T

                                 of the

                   COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS

                          UNITED STATES SENATE

                              to accompany

                                S. 1292

      TO ESTABLISH A SERVITUDE AND EMANCIPATION ARCHIVAL RESEARCH 
                 CLEARINGHOUSE IN THE NATIONAL ARCHIVES




                 June 21, 2004.--Ordered to be printed
                   COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS

                   SUSAN M. COLLINS, Maine, Chairman
TED STEVENS, Alaska                  JOSEPH I. LIEBERMAN, Connecticut
GEORGE V. VOINOVICH, Ohio            CARL LEVIN, Michigan
NORM COLEMAN, Minnesota              DANIEL K. AKAKA, Hawaii
ARLEN SPECTER, Pennsylvania          RICHARD J. DURBIN, Illinois
ROBERT F. BENNETT, Utah              THOMAS R. CARPER, Delaware
PETER G. FITZGERALD, Illinois        MARK DAYTON, Minnesota
JOHN E. SUNUNU, New Hampshire        FRANK LAUTENBERG, New Jersey
RICHARD C. SHELBY, Alabama           MARK PRYOR, Arkansas

           Michael D. Bopp, Staff Director and Chief Counsel
               Bonnie L. Heald, Professional Staff Member
      Joyce A. Rechtschaffen, Minority Staff Director and Counsel
          Jason M. Yanussi, Minority Professional Staff Member
      Jackie Parker, Deputy Legislative Director for Senator Levin
                      Amy B. Newhouse, Chief Clerk


                                                       Calendar No. 589
108th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session                                                     108-282

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



 
 SERVITUDE AND EMANCIPATION ARCHIVAL RESEARCH CLEARINGHOUSE ACT OF 2003

                                _______
                                

                 June 21, 2004.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

Ms. Collins, from the Committee on Governmental Affairs, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 1292]

    The Committee on Governmental Affairs, to whom was referred 
the bill (S. 1292) to establish a servitude and emancipation 
archival research clearinghouse in the National Archives, 
having considered the same reports favorably thereon with 
amendments and recommends that the bill do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
  I. Purpose and Summary..............................................1
 II. Background.......................................................2
III. Legislative History..............................................2
 IV. Section-by-Section Analysis......................................2
  V. Estimated Cost of Legislation....................................3
 VI. Evaluation of Regulatory Impact..................................4
VII. Changes in Existing Law..........................................4

                         I. PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

    The purpose of S. 1292 is to authorize the Archivist of the 
United States to establish, as part of the National Archives, a 
national database consisting of historic records of servitude 
and emancipation in the United States to assist African 
Americans in researching their genealogy. S. 1292 would 
authorize funds to be appropriated to establish the national 
database and for grants to States, colleges, universities, 
libraries, and museums to preserve local records related to 
servitude and emancipation.

                             II. BACKGROUND

    African Americans in the United States face a unique 
challenge when conducting genealogical research. Currently, 
records of emancipation and slavery are difficult to access, 
insufficiently archived and cataloged, and slowly crumbling due 
to uneven preservation efforts. Many of their ancestors' 
records were kept by private slave-trading companies and large 
plantation owners. Instead of looking up wills, land deeds, 
birth and death certificates, and other traditional 
genealogical research documents, African Americans must often 
seek to identify the name of former slave owners, hoping that 
the owners kept records of pertinent information, such as 
births and deaths.
    Even after 1865, discrimination in many States prevented 
voter registration, business ownership, school attendance, and 
other privileges of citizenship that would produce traceable 
documentation. While National Archives maintains former 
Freedman's Bureau records, many records from this era are held 
in State and university collections. Some States and localities 
have undertaken efforts to collect these documents with varying 
degrees of success.
    S. 1292 proposes the establishment of a clearinghouse to 
catalog various documents that would assist African Americans 
in search of a history that, because of slavery, cannot easily 
be found in the most commonly searched registers and census 
records.
    S. 1292 authorizes $5,000,000 to create the national 
database within the National Archives authorized by this Act. 
It also authorizes $5,000,000 for the National Archives to 
provide grants to States, colleges, universities, libraries, 
and museums to preserve local records of servitude and 
emancipation.

                        III. LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    S. 1292 was introduced on June 19, 2003, by Senators 
Landrieu, Levin, Bayh, Fitzgerald, Schumer, Voinovich, Durbin, 
and Stabenow and was referred to the Committee on Governmental 
Affairs. On June 2, 2004, the Committee considered S. 1292, and 
ordered the bill, as amended, reported by voice vote.
    The amendment, offered by Senator Levin, authorized such 
sums as are necessary for the cost of operating and maintaining 
the national clearinghouse. In addition, the amendment added 
libraries and museums to States, universities, and colleges as 
potential grant recipients. The Committee approved the 
amendment by voice vote.
    A companion bill, H.R. 4147, was introduced in the House by 
Representative Elijah Cummings on April 2, 2004, and has been 
referred to the Committee on Government Reform.

                    IV. SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

    Section 1 titles the bill as the ``Servitude and 
Emancipation Archival Research Clearinghouse Act of 2003.''
    Section 2(a) would establish a national database consisting 
of historic records of servitude and emancipation in the United 
States to assist African Americans in researching their 
genealogy.
    Section 2(b) provides that the database established by this 
Act shall be maintained by the National Historical Publications 
and Records Commission.
    Section 3 authorizes appropriations to establish, maintain 
and provide grants to States, colleges, universities, 
libraries, and museums to preserve local records of servitude 
and emancipation.

                    V. ESTIMATED COST OF LEGISLATION

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                      Washington, DC, June 7, 2004.
Hon. Susan M. Collins,
Chairman, Committee on Governmental Affairs,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Madam Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed estimate for S. 1292, the Servitude and 
Emancipation Archival Research Clearinghouse Act of 2003.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Matthew 
Pickford.
            Sincerely,
                                         Elizabeth Robinson
                               (For Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Director).
    Enclosure.

S. 1292--Servitude and Emancipation Archival Research Clearinghouse Act 
        of 2003

    Summary: S. 1292 would require the National Archives and 
Records Administration (NARA), with the National Historical 
Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), to establish a 
national database of historic records relating to slavery in 
the United States and to provide grants to states, colleges, 
universities, libraries, and museums to preserve local records 
concerning slavery. The legislation would authorize the 
appropriation of $5 million for the national database and $5 
million for local preservation grants. CBO estimates that NHPRC 
would need $1 million a year to update and maintain the 
database after it is established. Based on information from 
NARA, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would cost $12 
million over the 2005-2009 period, assuming appropriation of 
the necessary amounts. Enacting S. 1292 would not affect direct 
spending or revenues.
    S. 1292 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) 
and would benefit state and local governments by providing $5 
million in grants to preserve local records related to slavery.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: For this 
estimate, CBO assumes that the bill will be enacted by the 
beginning of fiscal year 2005. CBO estimates that implementing 
the bill would cost $12 million over the 2005-2009 period. 
Estimated outlays are based on information from NARA and 
historical spending patterns of similar programs. The estimated 
budgetary impact of S. 1292 is shown on the following table. 
The cost of this legislation falls within budget function 800 
(general government).

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

Establish National Database:
    Authorization Level............................................        5        0        0        0        0
    Estimated Outlays..............................................        0        3        2        0        0
Local Preservation Grants:
    Authorization Level............................................        1        1        1        1        1
    Estimated Outlays..............................................        1        1        1        1        1
Maintain National Database:
    Authorization Level............................................        0        0        0        1        1
    Estimated Outlays..............................................        0        0        0        1        1
Total Changes:
    Authorization Level............................................        6        1        1        2        2
    Estimated Outlays..............................................        1        4        3        2        2
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: S. 1292 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would benefit state and local governments 
by providing $5 million in grants to preserve local records 
related to slavery.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Matthew Pickford; 
Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Sarah Puro; and 
Impact on Private-Sector: Paige Piper/Bach.
    Estimate approved by: Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                  VI. EVALUATION OF REGULATORY IMPACT

    Pursuant to the requirements of paragraph 11(b) of rule 
XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee has 
considered the regulatory impact of this bill. CBO states that 
there are no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and no costs on 
state, local, or tribal governments. The legislation contains 
no other regulatory impact.

                      VII. CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, there are no changes in existing 
law made by the bill as reported.