Report text available as:

  • TXT
  • PDF   (PDF provides a complete and accurate display of this text.) Tip ?

112th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                     112-430

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



 
        WACO MAMMOTH NATIONAL MONUMENT ESTABLISHMENT ACT OF 2011

                                _______
                                

 April 16, 2012.--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

                             together with

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 1545]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 1545) to establish the Waco Mammoth National 
Monument in the State of Texas, 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 ``Waco Mammoth National Monument 
Establishment Act of 2011''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

  Congress finds that--
          (1) the Waco Mammoth Site area is located near the confluence 
        of the Brazos River and the Bosque River in central Texas, near 
        the city of Waco;
          (2) after the discovery of bones emerging from eroding creek 
        banks leading to the uncovering of portions of 5 mammoths, 
        Baylor University began investigating the site in 1978;
          (3) several additional mammoth remains have been uncovered 
        making the site the largest known concentration of mammoths 
        dying from the same event;
          (4) the mammoth discoveries have received international 
        attention; and
          (5) Baylor University and the city of Waco, Texas, have been 
        working together--
                  (A) to protect the site; and
                  (B) to develop further research and educational 
                opportunities at the site.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

  In this Act:
          (1) City.--The term ``City'' means the city of Waco, Texas.
          (2) Management plan.--The term ``management plan'' means the 
        management plan for the Monument prepared under section 
        5(c)(1).
          (3) Map.--The term ``map'' means the map entitled ``Proposed 
        Boundary Waco-Mammoth National Monument'', numbered T21/80,000, 
        and dated April 2009.
          (4) Monument.--The term ``Monument'' means the Waco Mammoth 
        National Monument established by section 4(a).
          (5) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        the Interior.
          (6) State.--The term ``State'' means the State of Texas.
          (7) University.--The term ``University'' means Baylor 
        University in the State.

SEC. 4. WACO MAMMOTH NATIONAL MONUMENT, TEXAS.

  (a) Establishment.--There is established in the State, as a unit of 
the National Park System, the Waco Mammoth National Monument, as 
generally depicted on the map.
  (b) Availability of Map.--The map shall be on file and available for 
public inspection in the appropriate offices of the National Park 
Service.

SEC. 5. ADMINISTRATION OF MONUMENT.

  (a) In General.--The Secretary shall administer the Monument in 
accordance with--
          (1) this Act; and
          (2) any cooperative agreements entered into under subsection 
        (b)(1).
  (b) Authorities of Secretary.--
          (1) Cooperative agreements.--The Secretary may enter into 
        cooperative management agreements with the University and the 
        City, in accordance with section 3(l) of Public Law 91-383 (16 
        U.S.C. 1a-2(l)).
          (2) Acquisition of land.--The Secretary may acquire by 
        donation only from the City any land or interest in land owned 
        by the City within the proposed boundary of the Monument.
  (c) General Management Plan.--
          (1) In general.--Not later than 3 years after the date of 
        enactment of this Act, the Secretary, in consultation with the 
        University and the City, shall complete a general management 
        plan for the Monument.
          (2) Inclusions.--The management plan shall include, at a 
        minimum--
                  (A) measures for the preservation of the resources of 
                the Monument;
                  (B) requirements for the type and extent of 
                development and use of the Monument;
                  (C) identification of the capacity of the Monument 
                for accommodating visitors; and
                  (D) opportunities for involvement by the University, 
                City, State, and other local and national entities in--
                          (i) developing educational programs for the 
                        Monument; and
                          (ii) developing and supporting the Monument.
  (d) Prohibition of Use of Federal Funds.--No Federal funds may be 
used to pay the costs of--
          (1) carrying out a cooperative agreement under subsection 
        (b)(1);
          (2) acquiring land for inclusion in the Monument under 
        subsection (b)(2);
          (3) developing a visitor center for the Monument;
          (4) operating or maintaining the Monument;
          (5) constructing exhibits for the Monument; or
          (6) developing the general management plan under subsection 
        (c).
  (e) Use of Non-Federal Funds.--Non-Federal funds may be used to pay 
any costs that may be incurred by the Secretary or the National Park 
Service in carrying out this section.
  (f) Effect on Eligibility for Financial Assistance.--Nothing in this 
Act affects the eligibility of the Monument for Federal grants or other 
forms of financial assistance that the Monument would have been 
eligible to apply for had National Park System status not been 
conferred to the Monument under this Act.
  (g) Termination of National Park System Status.--
          (1) In general.--Designation of the Monument as a unit of the 
        National Park System shall terminate if the Secretary 
        determines that Federal funds are required to operate and 
        maintain the Monument.
          (2) Reversion.--If the designation of the Monument as a unit 
        of the National Park System is terminated under paragraph (1), 
        any land acquired by the Secretary from the City under 
        subsection (b)(2) shall revert to the City.
  (h) Private Property Protection.--No private property may be made 
part of the Monument without the written consent of the owner of that 
private property.

SEC. 6. NO BUFFER ZONES.

  Nothing in this Act, the establishment of national monument, or the 
management plan shall be construed create buffer zones outside of the 
national monument. That an activity or use can be seen or heard from 
within the Monument shall not preclude the conduct of that activity or 
use outside the Monument.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 1545, as ordered reported, is to 
establish the Waco Mammoth National Monument in the State of 
Texas.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    Currently the City of Waco, Texas, and Baylor University 
jointly own a 109-acre site that contains the largest known 
concentration of mammoths dying from the same event. The 
mammoth remains were first discovered in 1978 and since then, 
Baylor University has been the lead investigator of the 
remains. The 109 acres were acquired over the past two decades 
from private donations and from buying parcels of land as they 
became available. The site is located near the center of Waco 
and is surrounded by agricultural lands, housing developments, 
the Brazos and the Bosque Rivers, and some additional lands 
owned by the University and the City of Waco.
    This legislation would designate the 109-acre site a 
national monument and would direct the National Park Service 
(NPS) to administer the site, and to enter into cooperative 
agreements. However, the 109 acres would not immediately 
transfer to NPS, but it may later acquire them by donation.
    The legislation is unique because it establishes a new unit 
of the Park System, but prohibits the use of federal funds and 
requires a management plan to be developed with Baylor 
University and the City of Waco. The Waco community has 
demonstrated an ability to manage the site, but anticipates 
that the partnership with NPS will contribute to the 
preservation and exposure of the resource.
    During markup of the bill, the Natural Resources Committee 
adopted an amendment offered by Congressman Bill Flores (R-TX) 
to protect private property rights. The amendment clarifies 
that NPS can only acquire property through donation, and that 
no property can be included in the boundary of the monument 
without written consent of the owner. Finally, the amendment 
adds language to prevent the creation of buffer zones around 
the monument, thus protecting uses outside the boundaries from 
being impeded by NPS interference.

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 1545 was introduced on April 14, 2011, by Congressman 
Bill Flores (R-TX). The bill was referred to the Committee on 
Natural Resources, and within the Committee to the Subcommittee 
on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands. On June 14, 2011, 
the Subcommittee held a hearing on the bill. On November 17, 
2011, the Natural Resources Committee met to consider the bill. 
The Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands 
was discharged by unanimous consent. Congressman Bill Flores 
offered amendment designated .991 to the bill; the amendment 
was adopted by voice vote. Congressman Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) 
offered amendment designated .040 to the bill; the amendment 
was not adopted by a bipartisan roll call vote of 15 to 28, as 
follows:


    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 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. 1545--Waco Mammoth National Monument Establishment Act of 2011

    H.R. 1545 would establish the Waco Mammoth National 
Monument in Texas. The legislation would prohibit the use of 
federal funds to implement the bill, and the site's designation 
as a unit of the National Park System would terminate if the 
Secretary of the Interior determines that federal funds are 
required to operate and maintain the monument. The legislation 
would authorize the National Park Service (NPS) to acquire land 
for the monument by donation. H.R. 1545 also would require the 
NPS to prepare a management plan for the monument within three 
years of enactment of the legislation. Enacting H.R. 1545 could 
affect direct spending if funds for the monument's operation 
are donated and spent by the NPS; therefore, pay-as-you-go 
procedures apply. CBO estimates, however, that any net impact 
in direct spending would be insignificant. Enacting the bill 
would not affect revenues.
    For this estimate, CBO assumes that about 5 acres of land 
owned by the city of Waco would be donated to the NPS within 
the next three years; the remainder of the approximately 110-
acre site would remain in nonfederal ownership. We further 
assume that other costs to develop visitor facilities within 
the monument--an estimated $8 million--would be borne by the 
city or other nonfederal entities.
    Based on information provided by the NPS, CBO estimates 
that implementing H.R. 1545 would cost $1 million over the next 
three years and about $400,000 a year thereafter. The $1 
million would be used to develop a management plan and to 
establish the site as a national monument. Beginning in 2015, 
$400,000 would be needed for the federal share of annual 
operating costs. The bill's prohibition on the use of federal 
funds for operations would require that those costs be financed 
through nonfederal sources. If nonfederal funds do not become 
available to implement the legislation, ownership of the site 
would revert back to the city of Waco, and the site would 
terminate as a unit of the National Park System. In any event, 
CBO estimates that the legislation would have an insignificant 
impact on the federal budget.
    H.R. 1545 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 Martin von 
Gnechten. The 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 budget 
authority, spending authority, credit authority, or an increase 
or decrease in revenues or tax expenditures. Enacting H.R. 1545 
could affect direct spending if funds for the monument's 
operation are donated and spent by the NPS; therefore, pay-as-
you-go procedures apply. CBO estimates, however, that any net 
impact in direct spending would be insignificant. Enacting the 
bill would not affect revenues.
    Based on information provided by the NPS, CBO estimates 
that implementing H.R. 1545 would cost $1 million over the next 
three years and about $400,000 a year thereafter. The $1 
million would be used to develop a management plan and to 
establish the site as a national monument. Beginning in 2015, 
$400,000 would be needed for the federal share of annual 
operating costs. The bill's prohibition on the use of federal 
funds for operations would require that those costs be financed 
through nonfederal sources. If nonfederal funds do not become 
available to implement the legislation, ownership of the site 
would revert back to the city of Waco, and the site would 
terminate as a unit of the National Park System. In any event, 
CBO estimates that the legislation would have an insignificant 
impact on the federal budget.
    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, as ordered reported, is to establish 
the Waco Mammoth National Monument in the State of Texas.

                           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.

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

    The 107th Congress authorized a Special Resources Study, 
conducted by the National Park Service, to assess various 
options for the long-term management of the Waco Mammoth site. 
The study was transmitted to Congress in 2008 and found the 
site was suitable and feasible as a unit of the National Park 
System. The study concluded that a partnership, including the 
City of Waco and Baylor University, and led by the National 
Park Service, would be the most effective and efficient 
management strategy for the site.
    Last Congress, legislation (H.R. 1376) implementing the 
study recommendations and sponsored by then-Representative Chet 
Edwards (D-TX), passed the House under suspension of the rules 
by a vote of 308 to 74, with 85 Republicans voting in favor of 
the measure.
    Rather than building on that progress this Congress, the 
Majority has insisted on taking an enormous step backward. H.R. 
1545 would still designate the site as a national monument and 
unit of the National Park System, but drops specific reference 
to the applicability of laws governing units of the National 
Park System, requires that any new land for the monument be 
donated by the City, rather than purchased or exchanged, and 
specifically prohibits the use of any federal funds for 
management or operation of the site. Finally, H.R. 1545 
requires that, if the Secretary determines federal funds are 
required to operate the monument, its designation as a unit of 
the National Park System shall terminate and any land acquired 
by the Secretary revert to the City.
    Given that the legislation designates the site as a unit of 
the National Park System, a prohibition on federal funding for 
the monument is nonsensical, as is the idea that the monument's 
status as a unit of the National Park System could be turned 
off or on like a switch. Democrats offered the text of the 
legislation approved overwhelmingly by the House during the 
previous Congress as a substitute but the amendment was 
defeated on a largely party line vote.
    The Majority is attempting to appear supportive of a new 
national park while working behind the scenes to cripple the 
unit. The debilitating changes Republicans have made to this 
once-popular bill demonstrate that the Majority is more 
committed to defunding the National Park System than expanding 
it.

                                   Edward Markey.
                                   Rush Holt.
                                   Madeleine Bordallo.
                                   John Garamendi.
                                   Grace Napolitano.
                                   Niki Tsongas.
                                   Dale E. Kildee.
                                   Gregorio Sablan.
                                   Ben Lujan.
                                   Raul Grijalva.