H. Rept. 110-16 - 110th Congress (2007-2008)
February 16, 2007, As Reported by the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee

Report text available as:

Formatting necessary for an accurate reading of this legislative 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.




House Report 110-16 - WATER QUALITY INVESTMENT ACT OF 2007




[House Report 110-16]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



110th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                     110-16

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



 
                  WATER QUALITY INVESTMENT ACT OF 2007

                                _______
                                

 February 16, 2007.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

Mr. Oberstar, from the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 569]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom 
was referred the bill (H.R. 569) to amend the Federal Water 
Pollution Control Act to authorize appropriations for sewer 
overflow control grants, 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:

SECTION. 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Water Quality Investment Act of 
2007''.

SEC. 2. SEWER OVERFLOW CONTROL GRANTS.

    (a) Administrative Requirements.--Section 221(e) of the Federal 
Water Pollution Control Act (33 U.S.C. 1301(e)) is amended to read as 
follows:
    ``(e) Administrative Requirements.--A project that receives 
assistance under this section shall be carried out subject to the same 
requirements as a project that receives assistance from a State water 
pollution control revolving fund under title VI, except to the extent 
that the Governor of the State in which the project is located 
determines that a requirement of title VI is insonsistent with the 
purposes of this section''.
    (b) Authorization of Appropriations.--The first sentence of section 
221(f) of such Act (33 U.S.C.1301(f)) is amended by striking 
``$750,000,000'' and all follows before the period and inserting 
``$250,000,000 for fiscal year 2008, $300,000,000 for fiscal year 2009, 
$350,000,000 for fiscal year 2010, $400,000,000 for fiscal year 2011, 
and $500,000,000 for fiscal year 2012''.
    (c) Allocation of Funds.--Section 221(g) of such Act (33 U.S.C. 
1301(g)) is amended to read as follows:
    ``(g) Allocation of Funds.--
          ``(1) Fiscal year 2008.--Subject to subsection (h), the 
        Administrator shall use the amounts appropriated to carry out 
        this section for fiscal year 2008 for making grants to 
        municipalities and municipal entities under subsection (a)(2) 
        in accordance with the criteria set forth in subsection (b).
          ``(2) Fiscal year 2009 and thereafter.--Subject to subsection 
        (h), the Administrator shall use the amounts appropriated to 
        carry out this section for fiscal year 2009 and each fiscal 
        year thereafter for making grants to States under subsection 
        (a)(1) in accordance with a formula to be established by the 
        Administrator, after providing notice and an opportunity for 
        public comment, that allocates to each State a proportional 
        share of such amounts based on the total needs of the State for 
        municipal combined sewer overflow controls and sanitary sewer 
        overflow controls identified in the most recent survey 
        conducted pursuant to section 516.''
    (d) Reports.--The first sentence of section 221(i) of such Act (33 
U.S.C. 1301(i)) is amended by striking ``2003'' and inserting ``2010''.

                       Purpose of the Legislation

    H.R. 569, the Water Quality Investment Act of 2007, amends 
section 221 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (``Clean 
Water Act'') to reauthorize appropriations for grants to 
municipalities and States to control combined sewer overflows 
and sanitary sewer overflows.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    Combined sewer systems, which carry both storm water and 
sanitary (sewage) flows, and separate sanitary sewer systems 
can overflow with untreated waste during wet weather episodes 
such as rainfall or snow melts. These combined sewer overflows 
(CSOs) and sanitary sewer overflows (SSOs) may also occur 
outside of precipitation events because of insufficient system 
capacity, poor system design, inadequate maintenance, inflow 
from improper connections to the system, and infiltration from 
groundwater into deteriorated pipes, among other factors.
    CSOs and SSOs present significant public health and safety 
concerns because raw sewage can overflow into rivers, lakes, 
streets, parks, basements, and other areas of potential human 
exposure, adversely impacting public health and the 
environment. These discharges are among the major sources 
responsible for beach closures, shellfish restrictions, and 
exceedances of water quality standards.
    According to a December 2001 U.S. Environmental Protection 
Agency (EPA) Report to Congress, there are 772 communities 
across the United States that have combined sewer systems. 
These combined sewer systems have 9,471 built-in relief outlets 
designed to prevent wastewater flows in excess of system 
capacity from damaging the systems' treatment works, by 
allowing wastewater discharges (``overflows'') directly into 
nearby streams, rivers, lakes, or estuaries, instead of going 
to the treatment works. Combined sewers are found in 31 States 
across the U.S. and the District of Columbia. The majority of 
combined sewers are located in communities in the Northeast and 
the Great Lakes regions, where much of the oldest water 
infrastructure in the nation is found. However, combined sewer 
overflows have also occurred in the West, including the States 
of Washington, Oregon, and California. To eliminate combined 
sewer overflows, communities must redesign their sewer systems 
to separate sewage flows from stormwater flows or provide 
significant additional capacity to eliminate the possibility 
that combined flows will exceed the limits of the 
infrastructure.
    EPA has also estimated that more than 40,000 SSOs per year 
occur from the nation's 19,500 separate sanitary sewer systems. 
SSOs can have a major impact on human health and the 
environment through discharges into neighborhood streets, 
parks, individual homeowner basements, and other areas.
    CSOs are point source discharges regulated under the Clean 
Water Act, and are subject to permitting under the National 
Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) by EPA or 
authorized States. Permits include technology-based standards 
determined on a case-by-case basis (rather than categorical 
standards) and any appropriate water quality standards. Under 
the CSO Control Policy issued by EPA in 1994, communities must 
adopt nine minimum controls and must develop long-term control 
plans. The CSO Control Policy requires these controls and plans 
to be incorporated into an NPDES permit or other enforceable 
mechanism that will ensure implementation by the CSO community. 
Section 402(q) of the Clean Water Act requires each permit, 
order, or decree issued after December 21, 2000, for a 
discharge from a municipal combined storm and sanitary sewer to 
conform to the 1994 CSO Control Policy.
    Correcting these problems is expensive. In its 2000 Clean 
Water Needs Survey, EPA estimated the cost to communities of 
addressing CSOs to be $50.6 billion, and the cost of addressing 
SSOs to be $88.5 billion.
    The vast majority of these costs will be borne by local 
communities and local ratepayers. Federal assistance has been 
small relative to the overall needs to address CSOs and SSOs. 
Through June 2006, States have made approximately $5.3 billion 
in loans for CSOs from State Revolving Funds (SRFs) and have 
made approximately $6 billion in loans to address the 
infiltration and inflow into sewer pipes that can cause SSOs.
    To provide additional Federal assistance, in 2000, Congress 
amended the Clean Water Act to add section 221 (P.L. 106-554). 
Section 221 authorized appropriations of $750 million for each 
of fiscal years 2002 and 2003 for EPA to make grants to States 
and municipalities for controlling CSOs and SSOs. This 
authorization was conditioned upon the receipt of at least 
$1.35 billion in appropriations for the Clean Water State 
Revolving Loan Funds. No funds were appropriated for sewer 
overflow control grants in either fiscal year 2002 or 2003. 
Reauthorization of appropriations for section 221 provides an 
authority to help municipalities and States control combined 
sewer overflows and sanitary sewer overflows.

                       Summary of the Legislation


Section 1. Sewer overflow control grants

    Subsection (a) amends section 221(e) of the Clean Water Act 
to require that a project that receives assistance under this 
section is carried out in accordance with the requirements for 
projects receiving assistance from State Revolving Loan Funds 
under title VI of the Clean Water Act, except to the extent 
that the Governor of the State in which the project is located 
determines that a requirement of title VI is inconsistent with 
the purposes of this section. This section allows States to 
implement grants under section 221 in conjunction with a 
State's Revolving Loan Fund program.
    Subsection (b) amends section 221(f) of the Clean Water Act 
to authorize appropriations of $1.8 billion over five years, 
providing $250 million in fiscal year 2008, $300 million in 
fiscal year 2009, $350 million in fiscal year 2010, $400 
million in fiscal year 2011, and $500 million in fiscal year 
2012.
    Subsection (c) amends section 221(g) of the Clean Water Act 
to update the provision for allocation of funds to reflect the 
new dates of authorization and reauthorized amounts. 
Specifically, consistent with section 221 as originally 
enacted, funding in the first year of authorization is to be 
used for direct grants by the Administrator to municipalities. 
Forsubsequent years, the Administrator will allocate funds to 
States, in accordance with a needs-based formula to be established by 
the Administrator, and such funds are to be used by States to make 
grants to municipalities.
    Subsection (d) amends section 221(i) of the Clean Water Act 
to change the date that the Administrator is required to 
transmit to Congress a report containing recommended funding 
levels for grants under this section from December 31, 2003, to 
December 31, 2010.

            Legislative History and Committee Consideration

    The Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment of the 
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure has held several 
hearings on the nation's wastewater infrastructure needs and 
the importance of a renewed commitment to addressing these 
needs, including funds to address CSOs and SSOs. On March 28, 
2001, the Subcommittee held a hearing, entitled ``Water 
Infrastructure Needs''. On March 19, 2003, the Subcommittee 
held a hearing, entitled ``Meeting the Nation's Wastewater 
Infrastructure Needs''. On April 28, 2004, the Subcommittee 
held a hearing, entitled ``Aging Water Supply Infrastructure''. 
On June 8 and 14, 2005, the Subcommittee held a series of 
hearings, entitled ``Financing Water Infrastructure Projects''. 
On January 19, 2007, the Subcommittee held a hearing, entitled 
``The Need for Renewed Investment in Clean Water 
Infrastructure''.
    Over the last three Congresses, the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure has approved legislation to 
reauthorize appropriations for grants to address combined sewer 
overflows and sanitary sewer overflows.
    In the 108th Congress, the Subcommittee held a legislative 
hearing on H.R. 784, the Water Quality Investment Act of 2003, 
on July 8, 2004. On July 15, 2004, the Subcommittee adopted by 
voice vote an amendment in the nature of a substitute. The 
amendment authorized $250 million for each of fiscal years 2005 
through 2010. The amendment also made other changes to section 
221 to update the authority and to ensure that States may 
administer these grants in the same way that they administer 
loans from the State Revolving Loan Funds. The Subcommittee 
recommended the bill, as amended, favorably to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure, by voice vote. On July 21, 
2004, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure met in 
open session, and ordered the bill, as amended by the 
Subcommittee, reported to the House by voice vote (H. Rept. 
108-675). No further action was taken on this legislation.
    In the 109th Congress, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure met on May 18, 2005, to consider H.R. 624, a 
bill to authorize appropriations for sewer overflow control 
grants. H.R. 624 was identical to H.R. 784, the Water Quality 
Investment Act of 2003, as reported by the Committee in the 
108th Congress, with the exception of updating the 
authorization years from 2005 through 2010 to 2006 through 
2011. The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure met in 
open session and ordered H.R. 624 reported to the House by 
voice vote (H. Rept. 109-166). No further action was taken on 
this legislation.
    Representative Pascrell, Representative Camp, and 
Representative Capuano introduced H.R. 569 on January 18, 2007. 
This legislation was modeled after H.R. 624, as approved by the 
Committee on May 18, 2005, and authorized appropriations of $3 
billion over six years for grants to address combined sewer 
overflows and sanitary sewer overflows.
    On January 31, 2007, the Subcommittee on Water Resources 
and Environment considered H.R. 569 and adopted an amendment in 
the nature of a substitute by voice vote. The amendment 
authorized appropriations of $1.8 billion over five years, 
providing $250 million in fiscal year 2008, $300 million in 
fiscal year 2009, $350 million in fiscal year 2010, $400 
million in fiscal year 2011, and $500 million in fiscal year 
2012, and conformed the remainder of the bill to the text of 
H.R. 624 from the 109th Congress. The Subcommittee recommended 
the bill, as amended, favorably to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure, by voice vote. On February 
7, 2007, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure met 
in open session, and ordered the bill, as amended by the 
Subcommittee, reported to the House by voice vote.

                              Record Votes

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the House of Representatives 
requires each committee report to include the total number of 
votes cast for and against on each record vote on a motion to 
report and on any amendment offered to the measure or matter, 
and the names of those members voting for and against. There 
were no recorded votes taken in connection with ordering H.R. 
569 reported. A motion to order H.R. 569, as amended, reported 
favorably to the House was agreed to by voice vote with a 
quorum present.

                      Committee Oversight Findings

    With respect to the requirements of clause 3(c)(I) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are 
reflected in this report.

                          Cost of Legislation

    Clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives does not apply where a cost estimate and 
comparison prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office under section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974 has been timely submitted prior to the filing of the 
report and is included in the report. Such a cost estimate is 
included in this report.

                    Compliance With House Rule XIII

    1. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(2) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, and 
308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee 
references the report of the Congressional Budget Office 
included in the report.
    2. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(4) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
performance goals and objective of this legislation are to 
control combined sewer overflows and sanitary sewer overflows 
through additional planning, design, and construction of 
treatment works to intercept, transport, control, or treat CSOs 
and SSOs.
    3. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(3) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the 
Committee has received the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 569 
from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office.
                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                 Washington, DC, February 12, 2007.
Hon. James L. Oberstar,
Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 569, the Water 
Quality Investment Act of 2007.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Susanne S. 
Mehlman (for federal costs), and Lisa Ramirez-Branum (for the 
state and local impact).
            Sincerely,
                                           Peter R. Orszag,
                                                          Director.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 569--Water Quality Investment Act of 2007

    Summary: H.R. 569 would authorize the appropriation of 
$1.80 billion over the 2008-2012 period for the Environmental 
Protection Agency (EPA) to provide grants to municipalities and 
states to control overflows of untreated wastewater that can 
occur during episodes of wet weather. Such overflows of sewage 
can pose a health and safety risk if they flow into rivers, 
lakes, and streets. This legislation also would permit states 
and municipalities to use the grant money to provide loans for 
eligible projects. CBO estimates that implementing this 
legislation would cost about $1.45 billion over the next five 
years and an additional $0.35 billion after 2012, assuming 
appropriation of the authorized amounts. Enacting the bill 
would not affect direct spending or receipts.
    H.R. 569 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 
governments. Enacting this bill would benefit states and 
municipalities receiving grant funding to control sewer 
overflow; any costs that they might incur would result from 
complying with conditions of federal assistance.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: For this 
estimate, CBO assumes that the bill will be enacted in fiscal 
year 2007 and that the amounts authorized will be appropriated 
for each fiscal year. Estimated outlays are based on historical 
spending patterns of similar grant programs. The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 569 is shown in the following table. 
The cost of this legislation falls within budget function 300 
(natural resources and environment).

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                       By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                                    --------------------------------------------
                                                                       2008     2009     2010     2011     2012
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  CHANGES IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION

Authorization Level................................................      250      300      350      400      500
Estimated Outlays..................................................      125      225      300      360      440
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: H.R. 569 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would impose no costs on state, local, or 
tribal governments. Enacting this bill would benefit states and 
municipalities receiving grant funding to control sewer 
overflow; any costs that they might incur would result from 
complying with conditions of federal assistance.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Susanne S. Mehlman; 
Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Lisa Ramirez-
Branum; and Impact on the Private Sector: Amy Petz.
    Estimate approved by: Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                     Compliance With House Rule XXI

    Pursuant to clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House 
of Representatives, H.R. 569, the Water Quality Investment Act 
of 2007, does not contain any congressional earmarks, limited 
tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in clause 
9(d), 9(e), or 9(f) of rule XXI of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives.

                   Constitutional Authority Statement

    Pursuant to clause (3)(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, committee reports on a bill or 
joint resolution of a public character shall include a 
statement citing the specific powers granted to the Congress in 
the Constitution to enact the measure. The Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure finds that Congress has the 
authority to enact this measure pursuant to its powers granted 
under article I, section 8 of the Constitution.

                       Federal Mandates Statement

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal 
mandates prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office pursuant to section 423 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform 
Act (Public Law 104-4).

                        Preemption Clarification

    Section 423 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 
requires the report of any Committee on a bill or joint 
resolution to include a statement on the extent to which the 
bill or joint resolution is intended to preempt state, local, 
or tribal law. The Committee states that H.R. 569 does not 
preempt any state, local, or tribal law.

                      Advisory Committee Statement

    No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b) 
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act are created by this 
legislation.

                Applicability to the Legislative Branch

    The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to 
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public 
services or accommodations within the meaning of section 
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act (Public Law 
104-1).

         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 221 OF THE FEDERAL WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT


SEC. 221. SEWER OVERFLOW CONTROL GRANTS.

    (a) * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

    [(e) Administrative Reporting Requirements.--If a project 
receives grant assistance under subsection (a) and loan 
assistance from a State water pollution control revolving fund 
and the loan assistance is for 15 percent or more of the cost 
of the project, the project may be administered in accordance 
with State water pollution control revolving fund 
administrative reporting requirements for the purposes of 
streamlining such requirements.]
    (e) Administrative Requirements.--A project that receives 
assistance under this section shall be carried out subject to 
the same requirements as a project that receives assistance 
from a State water pollution control revolving fund under title 
VI, except to the extent that the Governor of the State in 
which the project is located determines that a requirement of 
title VI is inconsistent with the purposes of this section.
    (f) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized 
to be appropriated to carry out this section [$750,000,000 for 
each of fiscal years 2002 and 2003] $250,000,000 for fiscal 
year 2008, $300,000,000 for fiscal year 2009, $350,000,000 for 
fiscal year 2010, $400,000,000 for fiscal year 2011, and 
$500,000,000 for fiscal year 2012. Such sums shall remain 
available until expended.
    [(g) Allocation of Funds.--
          [(1) Fiscal year 2002.--Subject to subsection (h), 
        the Administrator shall use the amounts appropriated to 
        carry out this section for fiscal year 2002 for making 
        grants to municipalities and municipal entities under 
        subsection (a)(2), in accordance with the criteria set 
        forth in subsection (b).
          [[(2) Fiscal year 2003.--Subject to subsection (h), 
        the Administrator shall use the amounts appropriated to 
        carry out this section for fiscal year 2003 as follows:
                  [(A) Not to exceed $250,000,000 for making 
                grants to municipalities and municipal entities 
                under subsection (a)(2), in accordance with the 
                criteria set forth in subsection (b).
                  [(B) All remaining amounts for making grants 
                to States under subsection (a)(l), in 
                accordance with a formula to be established by 
                the Administrator, after providing notice and 
                an opportunity for public comment, that 
                allocates to each State a proportional share of 
                such amounts based on the total needs of the 
                State for municipal combined sewer overflow 
                controls and sanitary sewer overflow controls 
                identified in the most recent survey conducted 
                pursuant to section 516(b)(1).]
    (g) Allocation of Funds.--
          (1) Fiscal year 2008.--Subject to subsection (h), the 
        Administrator shall use the amounts appropriated to 
        carry out this section for fiscal year 2008 for making 
        grants to municipalities and municipal entities under 
        subsection (a)(2) in accordance with the criteria set 
        forth in subsection (b).
          (2) Fiscal year 2009 and thereafter.--Subject to 
        subsection (h), the Administrator shall use the amounts 
        appropriated to carry out this section for fiscal year 
        2009 and each fiscal year thereafter for making grants 
        to States under subsection (a)(l) in accordance with a 
        formula to be established by the Administrator, after 
        providing notice and an opportunity for public comment, 
        that allocates to each State a proportional share of 
        such amounts based on the total needs of the State for 
        municipal combined sewer overflow controls and sanitary 
        sewer overflow controls identified in the most recent 
        survey conducted pursuant to section 516.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

    (i) Reports.--Not later than December 31, [2003] 2010, and 
periodically thereafter, the Administrator shall transmit to 
Congress a report containing recommended funding levels for 
grants under this section. The recommended funding levels shall 
be sufficient to ensure the continued expeditious 
implementation of municipal combined sewer overflow and 
sanitary sewer overflow controls nationwide.