H. Rept. 113-152 - AMENDING TITLE 49, UNITED STATES CODE, TO MODIFY REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO THE AVAILABILITY OF PIPELINE SAFETY REGULATORY DOCUMENTS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES113th Congress (2013-2014)
H. Rept. 113-152 - 113th Congress (2013-2014)
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House Report 113-152 - AMENDING TITLE 49, UNITED STATES CODE, TO MODIFY REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO THE AVAILABILITY OF PIPELINE SAFETY REGULATORY DOCUMENTS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES [House Report 113-152] [From the U.S. Government Publishing Office] 113th Congress Rept. 113-152 HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 1st Session Part 1 ====================================================================== AMENDING TITLE 49, UNITED STATES CODE, TO MODIFY REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO THE AVAILABILITY OF PIPELINE SAFETY REGULATORY DOCUMENTS, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES _______ July 16, 2013.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the State of the Union and ordered to be printed _______ Mr. Shuster, from the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, submitted the following R E P O R T [To accompany H.R. 2576] [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office] The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom was referred the bill (H.R. 2576) to amend title 49, United States Code, to modify requirements relating to the availability of pipeline safety regulatory documents, and for other purposes, having considered the same, report favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill do pass. CONTENTS Page Purpose of Legislation........................................... 2 Background and Need for Legislation.............................. 2 Hearings......................................................... 3 Legislative History and Consideration............................ 3 Committee Votes.................................................. 3 Committee Oversight Findings..................................... 3 New Budget Authority and Tax Expenditures........................ 3 Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate........................ 4 Performance Goals and Objectives................................. 4 Advisory of Earmarks............................................. 4 Duplication of Federal Programs.................................. 4 Disclosure of Directed Rule Makings.............................. 5 Federal Mandate Statement........................................ 5 Preemption Clarification......................................... 5 Advisory Committee Statement..................................... 5 Applicability of Legislative Branch.............................. 5 Section-by-Section Analysis of Legislation....................... 5 Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported............ 5 Purpose of Legislation H.R. 2576 amends title 49, United States Code, to modify requirements relating to the availability of pipeline safety regulatory documents. The bill corrects an unintended consequence of the Pipeline Safety, Regulatory Certainty, and Job Creation Act of 2011. Background and Need for Legislation For many years, government agencies have used standards and other materials published by standards development organizations (SDOs) as one means of satisfying regulatory objectives. In 1982, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) promulgated OMB Circular A-119, which required federal agencies to use privately developed voluntary consensus standards in lieu of government-unique standards in their procurement and regulatory activities, except where inconsistent with law or otherwise impractical. The use of such standards, whenever practicable and appropriate, was intended to achieve the following goals: (1) eliminate the cost to the government of developing its own standards and decrease the cost of goods procured and the burden of complying with agency regulation; (2) provide incentives and opportunities to establish standards that serve national needs; (3) encourage long-term growth for U.S. enterprises and promote efficiency and economic competition through harmonization of standards; and (4) further the policy of reliance upon the private sector to supply government needs for goods and services. In 1996, Congress passed the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act, codifying the requirements contained in the OMB Circular into law. Therefore, by law, federal agencies are required to use such voluntary consensus standards, instead of expending resources to create their own, unless use of such standards would be inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. Oftentimes, instead of reprinting the standards into the federal regulations, agencies simply reference the voluntary consensus standards by name, a practice more commonly known as ``incorporation by reference.'' SDOs maintain that the practice of incorporation by reference has a number of benefits, including dramatically reducing costs to the government of developing its own standards, preventing duplicative and conflicting government-imposed standards, and allowing agencies to use standards that are already recognized and accepted in the United States and around the world, which result in a public-private partnership that enhances public safety and health while saving government agencies and taxpayers money. Many safety advocates, universities, researchers, and state and local communities, however, have raised concerns about the lack of transparency and openness in reviewing the voluntary consensus standards, particularly when incorporated into federal safety regulations. In 2011, the bipartisan Pipeline Safety, Regulatory Certainty, and Job Creation Act of 2011 (Pipeline Safety Act) became law. In an effort to ensure public access to pipeline standards, section 24 of the Pipeline Safety Act included a provision, codified at section 60102(p) of title 49, United States Code, that requires the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) to make any document, or portion thereof, incorporated by reference into PHMSA regulations or guidance publicly available, free of charge, on an internet website. Acting in good faith, the intent was to ensure transparency and openness in government regulation, but an unintended consequence arose with regard to some SDOs whose business model could be jeopardized by allowing internet access to its standards. H.R. 2576 will ensure that the provisions of the Pipeline Safety Act support broader public availability of voluntary consensus standards and related information to the general public for non-commercial purposes--consistent with existing law and regulations--while also maintaining the invaluable public-private partnership between the private sector and government agencies. H.R. 2576 provides PHMSA with the flexibility necessary to continue to work with SDOs to improve regulatory outcomes and ensure that materials incorporated by reference are made available to the public. Hearings No hearings were held on H.R. 2576. Legislative History and Consideration On June 28, 2013, Representatives Bill Shuster, Jeff Denham, Nick Rahall, and Corrine Brown introduced H.R. 2576 to ensure the protection of intellectual property and copyrights of standard development organizations while providing public access to documents incorporated by reference into pipeline safety regulations. On July 10, 2013, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure met in open session and ordered the bill reported favorably to the House by voice vote. Committee Votes Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules 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 record votes taken in connection with consideration of H.R. 2576. Committee Oversight Findings With respect to the requirements of clause 3(c)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are reflected in this report. New Budget Authority and Tax Expenditures 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. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate 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. 2576 from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office: U.S. Congress, Congressional Budget Office, Washington, DC, July 11, 2013. Hon. Bill Shuster, 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. 2576, a bill to amend title 49, United States Code, to modify requirements relating to the availability of pipeline safety regulatory documents, and for other purposes. If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Sarah Puro. Sincerely, Robert A. Sunshine (For Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director). Enclosure. Performance Goals and Objectives With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the performance goal and objective of this legislation is to provide PHMSA greater flexibility in providing public access to documents incorporated by reference into pipeline safety regulations. Advisory of Earmarks Pursuant to clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the Committee is required to include a list of congressional earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in clause 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule XXI of the Rules of the House of Representatives. No provision in the bill includes an earmark, limited tax benefit, or limited tariff benefit under clause 9(e), 9(f), or 9(g) of rule XXI. Duplication of Federal Programs Pursuant to section 3(j) of H. Res. 5, 113th Cong. (2013), the Committee finds that no provision of H.R. 2576 establishes or reauthorizes a program of the federal government known to be duplicative of another federal program, a program that was included in any report from the Government Accountability Office to Congress pursuant to section 21 of Public Law 111- 139, or a program related to a program identified in the most recent Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance. Disclosure of Directed Rule Makings Pursuant to section 3(k) of H. Res. 5, 113th Cong. (2013), the Committee estimates that enacting H.R. 2576 does not specifically direct the completion of any specific rule makings within the meaning of section 551 of title 5, United States Code. Federal Mandate 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. 2576 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 of 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). Section-by-Section Analysis of Legislation Section 1. Availability of pipeline safety regulatory documents H.R. 2576 strikes the phrase ``on an internet Web site'' from section 60102(p) of title 49, United States Code, which will help protect copyright and intellectual property concerns, while granting PHMSA the flexibility necessary to ensure compliance with the law. It also extends the deadline for implementation from one year after the date of enactment to three years after the date of enactment, and reduces the number of documents to which the provision applies by striking ``guidelines'' from section 60102(p). 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 and existing law in which no change is proposed is shown in roman): TITLE 49, UNITED STATES CODE * * * * * * * SUBTITLE VIII--PIPELINES * * * * * * * CHAPTER 601--SAFETY * * * * * * * Sec. 60102. Purpose and general authority (a) * * * * * * * * * * (p) Limitation on Incorporation of Documents by Reference.-- Beginning [1 year] 3 years after the date of enactment of this subsection, the Secretary may not issue [guidance or] a regulation pursuant to this chapter that incorporates by reference any documents or portions thereof unless the documents or portions thereof are made available to the public, free of charge[, on an Internet Web site]. * * * * * * *