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112th Congress                                            Rept. 112-245
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                     Part 1

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



 
         CHESAPEAKE BAY ACCOUNTABILITY AND RECOVERY ACT OF 2011

                                _______
                                

October 14, 2011.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. Hastings of Washington, from the Committee on Natural Resources, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 258]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 258) to require the Office of Management and 
Budget to prepare a crosscut budget for restoration activities 
in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, to require the Environmental 
Protection Agency to develop and implement an adaptive 
management plan, 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:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Chesapeake Bay Accountability and 
Recovery Act of 2011''.

SEC. 2. CHESAPEAKE BAY CROSSCUT BUDGET.

  (a) Crosscut Budget.--The Director, in consultation with the 
Chesapeake Executive Council, the chief executive of each Chesapeake 
Bay State, and the Chesapeake Bay Commission, shall submit to Congress 
a financial report containing--
          (1) an interagency crosscut budget that displays--
                  (A) the proposed funding for any Federal restoration 
                activity to be carried out in the succeeding fiscal 
                year, including any planned interagency or intra-agency 
                transfer, for each of the Federal agencies that carry 
                out restoration activities;
                  (B) to the extent that information is available, the 
                estimated funding for any State restoration activity to 
                be carried out in the succeeding fiscal year;
                  (C) all expenditures for Federal restoration 
                activities from the preceding 2 fiscal years, the 
                current fiscal year, and the succeeding fiscal year; 
                and
                  (D) all expenditures, to the extent that information 
                is available, for State restoration activities during 
                the equivalent time period described in subparagraph 
                (C);
          (2) a detailed accounting of all funds received and obligated 
        by all Federal agencies for restoration activities during the 
        current and preceding fiscal years, including the 
        identification of funds which were transferred to a Chesapeake 
        Bay State for restoration activities;
          (3) to the extent that information is available, a detailed 
        accounting from each State of all funds received and obligated 
        from a Federal agency for restoration activities during the 
        current and preceding fiscal years; and
          (4) a description of each of the proposed Federal and State 
        restoration activities to be carried out in the succeeding 
        fiscal year (corresponding to those activities listed in 
        subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (1)), including the--
                  (A) project description;
                  (B) current status of the project;
                  (C) Federal or State statutory or regulatory 
                authority, programs, or responsible agencies;
                  (D) authorization level for appropriations;
                  (E) project timeline, including benchmarks;
                  (F) references to project documents;
                  (G) descriptions of risks and uncertainties of 
                project implementation;
                  (H) adaptive management actions or framework;
                  (I) coordinating entities;
                  (J) funding history;
                  (K) cost-sharing; and
                  (L) alignment with existing Chesapeake Bay Agreement 
                and Chesapeake Executive Council goals and priorities.
  (b) Minimum Funding Levels.--The Director shall only describe 
restoration activities in the report required under subsection (a) 
that--
          (1) for Federal restoration activities, have funding amounts 
        greater than or equal to $100,000; and
          (2) for State restoration activities, have funding amounts 
        greater than or equal to $50,000.
  (c) Deadline.--The Director shall submit to Congress the report 
required by subsection (a) not later than 30 days after the submission 
by the President of the President's annual budget to Congress.
  (d) Report.--Copies of the financial report required by subsection 
(a) shall be submitted to the Committees on Appropriations, Natural 
Resources, Energy and Commerce, and Transportation and Infrastructure 
of the House of Representatives and the Committees on Appropriations, 
Environment and Public Works, and Commerce, Science, and Transportation 
of the Senate.
  (e) Effective Date.--This section shall apply beginning with the 
first fiscal year after the date of enactment of this Act for which the 
President submits a budget to Congress.

SEC. 3. ADAPTIVE MANAGEMENT PLAN.

  (a) In General.--Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of 
this Act, the Administrator, in consultation with other Federal and 
State agencies, shall develop an adaptive management plan for 
restoration activities in the Chesapeake Bay watershed that includes--
          (1) definition of specific and measurable objectives to 
        improve water quality, habitat, and fisheries;
          (2) a process for stakeholder participation;
          (3) monitoring, modeling, experimentation, and other research 
        and evaluation practices;
          (4) a process for modification of restoration activities that 
        have not attained or will not attain the specific and 
        measurable objectives set forth under paragraph (1); and
          (5) a process for prioritizing restoration activities and 
        programs to which adaptive management shall be applied.
  (b) Implementation.--The Administrator shall implement the adaptive 
management plan developed under subsection (a).
  (c) Updates.--The Administrator shall update the adaptive management 
plan developed under subsection (a) every 2 years.
  (d) Report to Congress.--
          (1) In general.--Not later than 60 days after the end of a 
        fiscal year, the Administrator shall transmit to Congress an 
        annual report on the implementation of the adaptive management 
        plan required under this section for such fiscal year.
          (2) Contents.--The report required under paragraph (1) shall 
        contain information about the application of adaptive 
        management to restoration activities and programs, including 
        programmatic and project level changes implemented through the 
        process of adaptive management.
          (3) Effective date.--Paragraph (1) shall apply to the first 
        fiscal year that begins after the date of enactment of this 
        Act.
  (e) Inclusion of Plan in Annual Action Plan and Annual Progress 
Report.--The Administrator shall ensure that the Annual Action Plan and 
Annual Progress Report required by section 205 of Executive Order 13508 
includes the adaptive management plan outlined in subsection (a).

SEC. 4. INDEPENDENT EVALUATOR FOR THE CHESAPEAKE BAY PROGRAM.

  (a) In General.--There shall be an Independent Evaluator for 
restoration activities in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, who shall 
review and report on restoration activities and the use of adaptive 
management in restoration activities, including on such related topics 
as are suggested by the Chesapeake Executive Council.
  (b) Appointment.--
          (1) In general.--The Independent Evaluator shall be appointed 
        by the Administrator from among nominees submitted by the 
        Chesapeake Executive Council.
          (2) Nominations.--The Chesapeake Executive Council may submit 
        to the Administrator 4 nominees for appointment to any vacancy 
        in the office of the Independent Evaluator.
  (c) Reports.--The Independent Evaluator shall submit a report to the 
Congress every 2 years in the findings and recommendations of reviews 
under this section.
  (d) Chesapeake Executive Council.--In this section, the term 
``Chesapeake Executive Council'' has the meaning given that term by 
section 307 of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 
Authorization Act of 1992 (Public Law 102-567; 15 U.S.C. 1511d).

SEC. 5. DEFINITIONS.

  In this Act, the following definitions apply:
          (1) Adaptive management.--The term ``adaptive management'' 
        means a type of natural resource management in which project 
        and program decisions are made as part of an ongoing science-
        based process. Adaptive management involves testing, 
        monitoring, and evaluating applied strategies and incorporating 
        new knowledge into programs and restoration activities that are 
        based on scientific findings and the needs of society. Results 
        are used to modify management policy, strategies, practices, 
        programs, and restoration activities.
          (2) Administrator.--The term ``Administrator'' means the 
        Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.
          (3) Chesapeake bay state.--The term ``Chesapeake Bay State'' 
        or ``State'' means the States of Maryland, West Virginia, 
        Delaware, and New York, the Commonwealths of Virginia and 
        Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia.
          (4) Chesapeake bay watershed.--The term ``Chesapeake Bay 
        watershed'' means the Chesapeake Bay and the geographic area, 
        as determined by the Secretary of the Interior, consisting of 
        36 tributary basins, within the Chesapeake Bay States, through 
        which precipitation drains into the Chesapeake Bay.
          (5) Chief executive.--The term ``chief executive'' means, in 
        the case of a State or Commonwealth, the Governor of each such 
        State or Commonwealth and, in the case of the District of 
        Columbia, the Mayor of the District of Columbia.
          (6) Director.--The term ``Director'' means the Director of 
        the Office of Management and Budget.
          (7) Restoration activities.--The term ``restoration 
        activities'' means any Federal or State programs or projects 
        that directly or indirectly protect, conserve, or restore 
        living resources, habitat, water resources, or water quality in 
        the Chesapeake Bay watershed, including programs or projects 
        that promote responsible land use, stewardship, and community 
        engagement in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Restoration 
        activities may be categorized as follows:
                  (A) Physical restoration.
                  (B) Planning.
                  (C) Feasibility studies.
                  (D) Scientific research.
                  (E) Monitoring.
                  (F) Education.
                  (G) Infrastructure Development.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 258, as ordered reported, is to require 
the Office of Management and Budget to prepare a crosscut 
budget for restoration activities in the Chesapeake Bay 
watershed, and to require the Environmental Protection Agency 
to develop and implement an adaptive management plan.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    The Chesapeake Bay supports more than 3,600 species of 
fish, plants and wildlife, and as one of the largest estuaries 
in the world, it generates more than $1 billion in economic 
activity.
    A number of federal agencies are involved in restoration 
activities in and around the Chesapeake Bay including the 
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service, the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA), the National Park Service, the U.S. Geological Survey, 
the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the U.S. Army Corps of 
Engineers. Because multiple federal and State agencies take 
part in various aspects of Chesapeake Bay restoration, 
coordination on projects and funding is not always apparent. In 
addition, while millions of tax dollars have been spent to 
improve the quality of the Bay, these funds are distributed 
among many agencies and departments. According to the Fiscal 
Year 2011 Action Plan, federal funding totals as much as $490 
million in Fiscal Year 2011 alone. The many federal and State 
Chesapeake Bay restoration programs lack a single comprehensive 
reporting system for the funding of these activities. This 
legislation would bring transparency to federal funding of all 
restoration activities, and would institute measurable 
objectives to ensure that both federal and State dollars spent 
on restoration are producing positive results.
    The primary components of H.R. 258 are: (1) a requirement 
that a cross-cut budget be submitted to Congress; (2) a 
requirement that EPA, in consultation with other federal and 
State agencies, develop an adaptive management plan for 
restoration activities; and (3) a requirement for the 
appointment of an independent evaluator to review restoration 
activities and to report to Congress.
    While some of the objectives of H.R. 258 are included in 
Executive Order 13508 on Chesapeake Bay Protection and 
Restoration, issued in May 2009, progress has been slow, and 
EPA has not implemented the requirements of the Executive 
Order. In addition, H.R. 258 would codify the requirement for a 
cross-cut budget. While the Executive Order contains a similar 
budget requirement, Administration budget requests still do not 
provide adequate transparency, and the Executive Order does not 
require that the cross-cut budget requests be submitted to 
Congress.

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 258 was introduced on January 7, 2011, by Congressman 
Rob Wittman (R-VA). The bill was referred primarily to the 
Committee on Natural Resources, and within the Committee to the 
Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular 
Affairs. The bill was also referred to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure. On April 7, 2011, the 
Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular 
Affairs held a hearing on the bill. On July 20, 2011, the Full 
Resources Committee met to consider the bill. The Subcommittee 
on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular Affairs was 
discharged by unanimous consent. Congressman Rob Wittman (R-VA) 
offered an amendment; the amendment was adopted by unanimous 
consent. The bill, as amended, was ordered favorably reported 
to the House of Representatives by unanimous consent.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    The short title of the Act is the ``Chesapeake Bay 
Accountability and Recovery Act of 2011.''

Section 2. Chesapeake Bay crosscut budget

    Section 2 requires the Director of the Office of Management 
and Budget, in consultation with the Chesapeake Bay Council, 
the chief executive of each of the Chesapeake Bay States and 
the Chesapeake Bay Commission, to submit a financial report to 
Congress, no later than 30 days after the President submits his 
annual budget request, which contains a crosscutting budget. 
This budget should display: the proposed funding for any 
federal restoration activity (equal or greater than $100,000) 
for each federal agency for the succeeding year; to the extent 
the information is available, an estimated funding for State 
restoration activities (equal or greater than $50,000) for the 
succeeding year; all federal restoration expenditures from the 
preceding two years, the current year and the succeeding year; 
and all expenditures for State restoration activities during 
the preceding two years, the current year and the succeeding 
year.
    The Director is also required to submit to Congress a 
detailed accounting of all funds received and obligated by all 
federal agencies for restoration activities during the current 
and preceding years, including funds that were transferred to a 
Chesapeake Bay State for restoration activities.
    The report must also contain, to the extent the information 
is available, a detailed accounting from each State of all 
funds received and obligated from a federal agency for 
restoration activities during the current and preceding years.
    The report must contain a description of each proposed 
federal and State restoration activity to be carried out in the 
succeeding year and include: a project description; the current 
status of the project; the federal, State statutory or 
regulatory authority, program or responsible agencies; 
authorization levels for appropriations; project time lines 
including benchmarks; references to project documents; 
descriptions of risks and uncertainties of project 
implementation; adaptive management actions or frameworks; 
coordinating entities; funding history; and alignment with the 
Chesapeake Bay Agreement and the Chesapeake Bay Executive 
Council goals and priorities.

Section 3. Adaptive management plan

    Section 3 requires the EPA Administrator, in consultation 
with other federal and State agencies, to develop an adaptive 
management plan for the Chesapeake Bay Program and restoration 
activities that includes: definitions of specific and 
measurable objectives to improve water quality, habitat and 
fisheries; a process for stake holder involvement; monitoring, 
modeling, experimentation and other research and evaluation 
practices; a process for the modification of restoration 
activities that have not met objectives; and a process for 
prioritizing restoration activities to which adaptive 
management shall be applied.
    This section also requires that the Administrator implement 
the adaptive management plan using the criteria cited above and 
requires the Administrator to update the adaptive management 
plan every two years.
    Further, this section requires the Administrator to report 
to Congress, no later than 60 days after the end of each fiscal 
year, on the implementation of the adaptive management plan and 
any programmatic and project level changes implemented through 
the adaptive management plan.

Section 4. Independent evaluator for the Chesapeake Bay program

    Section 4 requires that an Independent Evaluator be 
appointed by the EPA Administrator from among nominees 
submitted by the Chesapeake Bay Executive Council. The 
Independent Evaluator shall review and report on restoration 
activities, the use of adaptive management in restoration 
activities, and on other related topics suggested by the 
Chesapeake Bay Executive Council.
    This section also requires the Independent Evaluator to 
submit a report to Congress every two years on the findings and 
recommendations.

Section 5. Definitions

    Section 5 adds definitions of ``adaptive management,'' 
``Administrator,'' ``Chesapeake Bay State,'' ``Chesapeake Bay 
watershed,'' ``chief executive,'' ``Director,'' and 
``restoration activities.''

            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 Natural Resources' oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII

    1. Cost of Legislation. Clause 3(d)(1) 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)(2)(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. 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:

H.R. 258--Chesapeake Bay Accountability and Recovery Act of 2011

    H.R. 258 would require the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) to develop, no later than one year after the bill's 
enactment, a management plan for the Chesapeake Bay Program and 
restoration activities related to the bay. EPA would be 
required to update the management plan every two years. The 
legislation would require new financial reports on the 
Chesapeake Bay Program from the Office of Management and Budget 
and would require EPA to appoint an independent evaluator, who 
would review and report to the Congress on the plan.
    Based on information from EPA, CBO estimates that 
implementing this legislation would cost about $1 million 
annually over the 2012-2016 period, subject to the availability 
of appropriated funds. Enacting the bill would not affect 
direct spending or receipts; therefore, pay-as-you-go 
procedures do not apply.
    H.R. 258 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Susanne S. 
Mehlman. This estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy 
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.
    2. Section 308(a) of 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 credit 
authority, or an increase or decrease in revenues or tax 
expenditures. Based on information from the Environmental 
Protection Agency, CBO estimates that implementing this 
legislation would cost about $1 million annually over the 2012-
2016 period, subject to the availability of appropriated funds. 
Enacting the bill would not affect direct spending or receipts; 
therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.
    3. General Performance Goals and Objectives. This bill does 
not authorize funding and therefore, clause 3(c)(4) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives does not 
apply.

                           EARMARK STATEMENT

    This bill does not contain any Congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined 
under clause 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule XXI of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives.

                    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

    If enacted, this bill would make no changes in existing 
law.