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113th Congress                                            Rept. 113-398
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                      Part 1

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



 
                  MARINE DEBRIS EMERGENCY ACT OF 2013

                                _______
                                

                 April 2, 2014.--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. 1425]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 1425) to amend the Marine Debris Act to better 
address severe marine debris events, and for other purposes, 
having considered the same, report favorably thereon without 
amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of H.R. 1425 is to amend the Marine Debris Act 
to better address severe marine debris events.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    The Marine Debris Research, Prevention, and Reduction Act 
(Public Law 109-449) was enacted in 2006 to legislatively 
authorize the marine debris program within the National Oceanic 
and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The program supports 
national and international efforts to research, prevent, and 
reduce the impacts of marine debris. The program coordinates 
and supports activities within NOAA and with other federal 
agencies. It also supports local and regional projects through 
grants issued to state and local agencies, tribes, non-
governmental organizations, academia, and industry.
    The law was amended in the 112th Congress (Public Law 112-
213). The amendments modified the Act to: rename the law as the 
``Marine Debris Act,'' strike outdated provisions; rename the 
program the Marine Debris Program; revise the program 
components to include ``identifying, determining sources of, 
assessing, preventing, reducing, and removing marine debris''; 
make the annual reports biennial; expand the confidentiality 
provisions to all industries that submit information; define 
``severe marine debris event'' and codify the existing NOAA and 
U.S. Coast Guard marine debris definition; and require NOAA to 
determine whether the March 2011 Tohoku earthquake and 
subsequent tsunami and the October 2012 hurricane Sandy each 
caused a severe marine debris event and if that determination 
is made, report to certain Congressional committees. The law 
did not require any further action after NOAA reported to 
Congress.
    H.R. 1425 would further amend the Marine Debris Act to 
establish a shortened and priority grant process for grants 
addressing severe marine debris events. NOAA would have 60 days 
to approve or disapprove the grants. If the grant is approved, 
grant funds would also be approved and preference for grant 
funding would be for those grants addressing severe marine 
debris events, including any that have or are likely to 
introduce marine invasive species. H.R. 1425 would allow 
governors to request NOAA to make a severe marine debris 
determination and would require a response within 30 days, 
either a declaration or a response why a declaration wasn't 
made. The bill would also require NOAA to educate grant 
recipients to address marine invasive species that may be 
associated with the marine debris. The bill also defines 
``marine invasive species'' as ``marine nonindigenous species'' 
as defined in section 1003 of the Nonindigenous Aquatic 
Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990 that will or is 
likely to: cause economic or environmental harm; threaten 
diversity or abundance of native species or the ecological 
stability of infested waters; or disrupt commercial, 
agricultural, aquacultural, or recreational activities 
dependent on the infested waters.

                            Committee Action

    H.R. 1425 was introduced on April 9, 2013, by Congresswoman 
Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR). The bill was referred to the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure and in addition to the 
Committee on Natural Resources. Within the Committee on Natural 
Resources, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on 
Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs. On June 13, 
2013, the Subcommittee held a hearing on the bill. On December 
4, 2013, the Natural Resources Committee met to consider the 
bill. The Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and 
Insular Affairs was discharged by unanimous consent. 
Congressman Don Young (R-AK) offered an amendment designated 
.002 to the bill; the amendment was adopted by unanimous 
consent. No further amendments were offered and the bill, as 
amended, was then ordered favorably reported to the House of 
Representatives by unanimous consent.

            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. 1425--Marine Debris Emergency Act of 2013

    H.R. 1425 would direct the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration (NOAA) to process applications for certain 
grants within 60 days, if feasible. The bill also would 
authorize the agency to prioritize grant funding for certain 
events involving marine debris. Finally, if the governor of a 
state requests that NOAA make priority funding available for a 
particular marine debris event, the agency must determine 
whether the event is eligible for such funding within 30 days.
    Based on information provided by NOAA, CBO estimates that 
implementing the bill would have no significant impact on the 
federal budget. Because, under the bill, the agency would have 
discretion over whether to expedite the processing of grant 
applications and make priority funding available, CBO expects 
that implementing the bill would have a minimal impact on the 
agency's workload. Enacting the bill would not affect direct 
spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do 
not apply.
    H.R. 1425 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Jeff LaFave. 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. CBO estimates that 
implementing the bill would have no significant 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 is to amend the Marine Debris Act to 
better address severe marine debris events.

                           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.

                       Compliance With H. Res. 5

    Directed Rule Making. The Chairman does not believe that 
this bill directs any executive branch official to conduct any 
specific rule-making proceedings.
    Duplication of Existing Programs. This bill does not 
establish or reauthorize a program of the federal government 
known to be duplicative of another program. Such program was 
not included in any report from the Government Accountability 
Office to Congress pursuant to section 21 of Public Law 111-139 
or identified in the most recent Catalog of Federal Domestic 
Assistance published pursuant to the Federal Program 
Information Act (Public Law 95-220, as amended by Public Law 
98-169) as relating to other programs.

                Preemption of State, Local or Tribal Law

    This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or 
tribal law.

         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 (new matter is 
printed in italic and existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman):

MARINE DEBRIS ACT

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SEC. 3. NOAA MARINE DEBRIS PROGRAM.

  (a) Establishment of Program.--There is established, within 
the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, a Marine 
Debris Program to identify, determine sources of, assess, 
prevent, reduce, and remove marine debris and address the 
adverse impacts of marine debris on the economy of the United 
States, the marine environment, and navigation safety.
  (b) Program Components.--The Administrator, acting through 
the Program and subject to the availability of appropriations, 
shall--
          (1) identify, determine sources of, assess, prevent, 
        reduce, and remove marine debris, with a focus on 
        marine debris posing a threat to living marine 
        resources and navigation safety;
          (2) provide national and regional coordination to 
        assist States, Indian tribes, and regional 
        organizations in the identification, determination of 
        sources, assessment, prevention, reduction, and removal 
        of marine debris;
          (3) undertake efforts to reduce the adverse impacts 
        of lost and discarded fishing gear on living marine 
        resources and navigation safety, including--
                  (A) research and development of alternatives 
                to gear posing threats to the marine 
                environment and methods for marking gear used 
                in certain fisheries to enhance the tracking, 
                recovery, and identification of lost and 
                discarded gear; and
                  (B) the development of effective 
                nonregulatory measures and incentives to 
                cooperatively reduce the volume of lost and 
                discarded fishing gear and to aid in gear 
                recovery;
          (4) undertake outreach and education activities for 
        the public and other stakeholders on sources of marine 
        debris, threats associated with marine debris, and 
        approaches to identifying, determining sources of, 
        assessing, preventing, reducing, and removing marine 
        debris and its adverse impacts on the United States 
        economy, the marine environment, and navigation safety, 
        including outreach and education activities through 
        public-private initiatives; and
          (5) develop, in consultation with the Interagency 
        Committee, interagency plans for the timely response to 
        events determined by the Administrator to be severe 
        marine debris events, including plans to--
                  (A) coordinate across agencies and with 
                relevant State, tribal, and local governments 
                to ensure adequate, timely, and efficient 
                response;
                  (B) assess the composition, volume, and 
                trajectory of marine debris associated with a 
                severe marine debris event; and
                  (C) estimate the potential impacts of a 
                severe marine debris event, including economic 
                impacts on human health, navigation safety, 
                natural resources, tourism, and livestock, 
                including aquaculture.
  (c) Grants, Cooperative Agreements, and Contracts.--
          (1) In general.--The Administrator, acting through 
        the Program, shall enter into cooperative agreements 
        and contracts and provide financial assistance in the 
        form of grants for projects to accomplish the purpose 
        set forth in section 2.
          (2) Grant cost sharing requirement.--
                  (A) In general.--Except as provided in 
                subparagraph (B), Federal funds for any grant 
                under this section may not exceed 50 percent of 
                the total cost of such project. For purposes of 
                this subparagraph, the non-Federal share of 
                project costs may be provided by in-kind 
                contributions and other noncash support.
                  (B) Waiver.--The Administrator may waive all 
                or part of the matching requirement under 
                subparagraph (A) if the Administrator 
                determines that no reasonable means are 
                available through which applicants can meet the 
                matching requirement and the probable benefit 
                of such project outweighs the public interest 
                in such matching requirement.
          (3) Amounts paid and services rendered under 
        consent.--
                  (A) Consent decrees and orders.--If 
                authorized by the Administrator or the Attorney 
                General, as appropriate, the non-Federal share 
                of the cost of a project carried out under this 
                Act may include money paid pursuant to, or the 
                value of any in-kind service performed under, 
                an administrative order on consent or judicial 
                consent decree that will remove or prevent 
                marine debris.
                  (B) Other decrees and orders.--The non-
                Federal share of the cost of a project carried 
                out under this Act may not include any money 
                paid pursuant to, or the value of any in-kind 
                service performed under, any other 
                administrative order or court order.
          (4) Eligibility.--Any State, local, or tribal 
        government whose activities affect research or 
        regulation of marine debris, and any institution of 
        higher education, nonprofit organization, or commercial 
        organization with expertise in a field related to 
        marine debris, is eligible to submit to the 
        Administrator a marine debris proposal under the grant 
        program.
          (5) Project review and approval.--The Administrator 
        shall--
                  (A) review each marine debris project 
                proposal to determine if it meets the grant 
                criteria and supports the goals of this Act;
                  (B) after considering any written comments 
                and recommendations based on the review, 
                approve or disapprove the proposal; and
                  (C) provide notification of that approval or 
                disapproval to the person who submitted the 
                proposal.
          (6) Project reporting.--Each grantee under this 
        section shall provide periodic reports as required by 
        the Administrator. Each report shall include all 
        information required by the Administrator for 
        evaluating the progress and success in meeting its 
        stated goals, and impact of the grant activities on the 
        marine debris problem.
  (d) Severe Marine Debris Events.--
          (1) Priority consideration and disbursement.--Not 
        later than 60 days after receiving an application for a 
        grant under subsection (c) with respect to a severe 
        marine debris event, the Administrator shall, to the 
        extent feasible--
                  (A) approve or disapprove the application; 
                and
                  (B) if approving the application, provide the 
                approved grant funds to the grant recipient.
          (2) Preference.--In evaluating applications for 
        grants under subsection (c), the Administrator shall 
        give preference to projects that address severe marine 
        debris events, including projects that address a severe 
        marine debris event that has introduced or is likely to 
        introduce marine invasive species to the United States.
          (3) Request for a declaration.--
                  (A) In general.--The Governor of a State may 
                request that the Administrator declare a severe 
                marine debris event, in such State or a region 
                that includes such State, for purposes of 
                paragraphs (1) and (2).
                  (B) Response to requests.--Not later than 30 
                days after receiving a request under 
                subparagraph (A), the Administrator shall 
                either--
                          (i) declare a severe marine debris 
                        event with respect to the request; or
                          (ii) provide a response to the 
                        Governor who submitted the request, 
                        explaining why the Administrator has 
                        not declared a severe marine debris 
                        event with respect to the request.
  (e) Guidance.--The Administrator shall take appropriate steps 
to encourage recipients of grants under this section to--
          (1) educate staff and volunteers engaged in marine 
        debris response efforts on the potential threats that 
        marine debris and marine invasive species may pose to 
        the United States with respect to living marine 
        resources, the marine environment, navigation, and 
        public health; and
          (2) coordinate marine debris response efforts with 
        appropriate Federal, State, and local government and 
        nongovernmental entities.
  (f) Marine Invasive Species Defined.--In this section, the 
term ``marine invasive species'' means a marine nonindigenous 
species (as defined in section 1003 of the Nonindigenous 
Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990 (16 U.S.C. 
4702)) the introduction of which to the United States will, or 
is likely to--
          (1) cause economic or environmental harm;
          (2) threaten the diversity or abundance of native 
        species or the ecological stability of infested waters; 
        or
          (3) disrupt commercial, agricultural, aquacultural, 
        or recreational activities dependent on infested 
        waters.

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