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113th Congress 
 2d Session                      SENATE                          Report
                                                                113-235
_______________________________________________________________________

                                     

                                                       Calendar No. 503

 
       MULTINATIONAL SPECIES CONSERVATION FUNDS SEMIPOSTAL STAMP

                      REAUTHORIZATION ACT OF 2013

                               __________

                              R E P O R T

                                 of the

                   COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY AND

                          GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS

                          UNITED STATES SENATE

                              to accompany

                                 S. 231

TO REAUTHORIZE THE MULTINATIONAL SPECIES CONSERVATION FUNDS SEMIPOSTAL 
                                 STAMP




                 July 31, 2014.--Ordered to be printed
        COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS

                  THOMAS R. CARPER, Delaware, Chairman
CARL LEVIN, Michigan                 TOM COBURN, Oklahoma
MARK L. PRYOR, Arkansas              JOHN McCAIN, Arizona
MARY L. LANDRIEU, Louisiana          RON JOHNSON, Wisconsin
CLAIRE McCASKILL, Missouri           ROB PORTMAN, Ohio
JON TESTER, Montana                  RAND PAUL, Kentucky
MARK BEGICH, Alaska                  MICHAEL B. ENZI, Wyoming
TAMMY BALDWIN, Wisconsin             KELLY AYOTTE, New Hampshire
HEIDI HEITKAMP, North Dakota

                  Gabrielle A. Batkin, Staff Director
               John P. Kilvington, Deputy Staff Director
                    Mary Beth Schultz, Chief Counsel
                Robert H. Bradley, Legislative Assistant
               Keith B. Ashdown, Minority Staff Director
         Christopher J. Barkley, Minority Deputy Staff Director
               Andrew C. Dockham, Minority Chief Counsel
Joseph D. Moeller, Minority U.S. Postal Service Office of the Inspector 
                            General Detailee
                     Laura W. Kilbride, Chief Clerk
                                                       Calendar No. 503
113th Congress
                                 SENATE
                                                                 Report
 2d Session                                                     113-235

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




       MULTINATIONAL SPECIES CONSERVATION FUNDS SEMIPOSTAL STAMP

                                _______
                                

                 July 31, 2014.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. Carper, from the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental 
                    Affairs, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 231]

    The Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental 
Affairs, to which was referred the bill (S. 231) to reauthorize 
the Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp, 
having considered the same, reports favorably thereon without 
amendment and recommends that the bill do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
  I. Purpose and Summary..............................................1
 II. Background and Need for the Legislation..........................2
III. Legislative History..............................................3
 IV. Section-by-Section Analysis......................................3
  V. Evaluation of Regulatory Impact..................................4
 VI. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate........................4
VII. Changes to Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported............5

                         I. Purpose and Summary

    S. 231 would require the United States Postal Service to 
continue offering the Multinational Species Conservation Funds 
Semipostal Stamp for an additional four years. The 
Multinational Species Conservation Funds is a small program 
administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It supports 
conservation efforts benefiting tigers, rhinoceroses, Asian and 
African elephants, marine turtles and great apes. Semipostal 
stamps are stamps bearing a surcharge above typical postal 
rates. Members of the public may voluntarily purchase 
semipostal stamps as a means of donating to the cause promoted 
by the stamp. Continuing to direct funds raised from the sale 
of this semipostal stamp to the Multinational Species 
Conservation Funds is an effective way to increase financial 
support for the program's important work without having to 
increase its annual appropriations.

              II. Background and Need for the Legislation

    Since 1998, the U.S. Postal Service (``the Postal Service'' 
or ``USPS'') has issued several ``semipostal'' stamps--stamps 
purchasers may use to mail a First-Class letter, but for which 
they voluntarily pay a surcharge over the usual First-Class 
Mail rates as a means to donate to the cause commemorated by 
the stamp. Each of these semipostal stamps has been issued at 
the direction of Congress.\1\ A variety of causes have 
benefited from the sale of these stamps, including breast 
cancer research,\2\ domestic violence prevention programs,\3\ 
and assistance to the families of rescue workers killed or 
disabled in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.\4\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\In 2000, Congress gave the Postal Service authority to issue 
semipostal stamps pursuant to the Semipostal Authorization Act (P.L. 
106-253). However, the Postal Service has not yet issued a semipostal 
stamp pursuant to the Act because it decided not to approve new 
semipostal stamps while any other semipostal stamps are in circulation. 
Such stamps have been on sale continuously since the initial enactment 
of the Stamp Out Breast Cancer Act (P.L. 105-41).
    \2\Stamp Out Breast Cancer Act (P.L. 105-41).
    \3\Stamp Out Domestic Violence Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-67).
    \4\The 9/11 Heroes Stamp Act of 2001 (P.L. 107-67).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    To help fund conservation efforts, in 2010 Congress 
authorized the creation of a semipostal stamp\5\ to benefit the 
Multinational Species Conservation Funds (``MSCF''). Congress 
created the MSCF in 1999 to recognize an unprecedented 
international decline of certain species and to help save some 
of the world's fastest disappearing animals in their natural 
habitats.\6\ The MSCF currently benefits tigers, six species of 
rhinoceroses, Asian and African elephants, marine turtles, and 
great apes. The MSCF supports conservation efforts benefiting 
these species, often in conjunction with efforts under the 
Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species 
(CITES), to which the United States is a party. The MSCF 
provides funding in the form of cost-sharing grants for species 
and habitat conservation as well as efforts to combat poaching 
activities and illegal trafficking of these species. 
Additionally, the MSCF offers technical assistance for 
conserving the species benefitted by the program. These efforts 
also benefit from funding and in-kind support provided by 
partners and collaborators.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \5\The Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp 
Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-241)
    \6\The MSCF (16 U.S.C. 4246) was created as part of Title I of the 
Department of the Interior and Relation Agencies Appropriations Act, 
1999 which was later incorporated into the Omnibus Consolidated and 
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999 (P.L. 105-277).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which runs 
the program, more than $122 million was provided by non-federal 
sources for efforts under the MSCF from Fiscal Year 2007 to 
Fiscal Year 2013. This is significantly more than the amount 
appropriated for these efforts by Congress during the same time 
period.\7\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \7\U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Multinational Species 
Conservation Funds FY13 Update, http://www.fws.gov/international/pdf/
factsheet-species-funding.pdf.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Despite the success and popularity of the MSCF projects, 
annual appropriations for the MSCF have never exceeded $10 
million. Demand for grant funding, however, remains high, and 
applications under the different MSCF initiatives far exceed 
available funding. In addition, proponents of MSCF note that 
each federal dollar invested in the MSCF routinely leverages 
three or four times the amount in non-federal matching 
contributions and increases overall financial support for 
wildlife conservation. The issuance of a semipostal stamp for 
the MSCF was therefore an effective way to increase financial 
support for wildlife conservation without affecting 
appropriations for other programs outside of the MSCF.
    Since its establishment in September 2011, the semipostal 
stamp program has generated approximately $2.5 million in 
revenue for 47 MSCF projects in 31 different countries, with 
nearly 25 million stamps sold to the public over the course of 
the 27 months it was available to purchase.\8\ Moreover, the 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that the funds raised 
by this stamp have led to an additional $3.6 million donated to 
MSCF projects through outside contributions.\9\ Due to a lack 
of a legislative mandate for the Postal Service to continue 
offering the stamp, the Postal Service ceased sales of the 
stamps after December 2013. The unsold stamps were put into 
storage in January 2014 and have remained there ever since. The 
Committee, recognizing that the Postal Service currently 
possesses 75 million of these semipostal stamps,\10\ recommends 
passage of this legislation in order to enable the continued 
sale of these stamps for an additional four years.\11\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \8\U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, ``Americans Play Key Role in 
Conservation of Elephants, Rhinos, and Other Imperiled Species by 
Purchasing Save Vanishing Species Semipostal Stamps'' (December 19, 
2013), http://www.fws.gov/news/ShowNews.cfm?ID=0C9AE706-AC3D-DD24-
F83EB0530D58FD72; See also http://www.fws.gov/international/save-
vanishing-species-stamp.html.
    \9\U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, ``Americans Play Key Role in 
Conservation of Elephants, Rhinos, and Other Imperiled Species by 
Purchasing Save Vanishing Species Semipostal Stamps'' (December 19, 
2013), http://www.fws.gov/news/ShowNews.cfm?ID=0C9AE706-AC3D-DD24-
F83EB0530D58FD72.
    \10\Data provided to the Committee on June 20, 2014 by the United 
States Postal Service's Stamp Services.
    \11\Since the authorizing statute requires not just that the stamp 
exist, but that it be available to the public for a period of time, the 
Committee expects that any time since January 1, 2014 when the stamp 
was taken out of circulation will not count toward the new time frame 
established in S. 231.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

                        III. Legislative History

    S. 231 was introduced by Senators Portman and Udall (NM) on 
February 7, 2013. The bill was referred to the Committee on 
Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. The bill is 
cosponsored by Senators Feinstein, Gillibrand, Levin, Stabenow, 
Warren and Whitehouse.
    The Committee considered the bill at its business meeting 
on June 25, 2014, and ordered the bill favorably reported by 
voice vote. Members present for the voice vote on the bill were 
Senators Carper, Levin, McCaskill, Tester, Heitkamp, Coburn, 
McCain, Johnson and Portman.

                    IV. Section-by-Section Analysis


Section 1. Short title

    Section 1 designates the name of the act as the 
``Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp 
Reauthorization Act of 2013.''

Section 2. Reauthorization

    Section 2 amends Section 2(c)(2) of the Multinational 
Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp Act of 2010 (39 
U.S.C. 416 note) by striking ``2 years'' and inserting ``6 
years,''. The Multinational Species Conservation Funds 
Semipostal Stamp Act of 2010 directs the U.S. Postal Service to 
issue a Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal 
Stamp which would be available for voluntary purchase on the 
part of postal patrons for a period of time (currently two 
years) after the enactment of this bill. In keeping with the 
requirements of the Semipostal Authorization Act (39 U.S.C. 
Sec. 14), the statute sets the rate of the semipostal stamp at 
a cost equal to the rate of a First-Class stamp, plus a 
differential of no less than 15%. It also requires the rate to 
be evenly divisible by 5.
    The 2010 law also directs the transfer of all amounts 
available from the sale of the stamp twice yearly to the U.S. 
Fish and Wildlife Service and directs the Fish and Wildlife 
Service to divide the proceeds equally for operations among the 
African Elephant Conservation Fund, the Asian Elephant 
Conservation Fund, the Great Ape Conservation Fund, the Marine 
Turtle Conservation Fund, the Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation 
Fund, and other international wildlife conservation funds 
authorized by Congress after the date of the enactment of the 
Act. These funds are not to be considered as an offset in the 
level of appropriations or other federal funding.

                   V. Evaluation of Regulatory Impact

    Pursuant to the requirements of paragraph 11(b) of rule 
XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee has 
considered the regulatory impact of this bill. The 
Congressional Budget Office states that the bill contains no 
intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the 
Unfunded Mandate Reform Act and would impose no costs on state, 
local, or tribal governments, or private entities. The 
enactment of this legislation will not have significant 
regulatory impact.

             VI. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

                                                     July 18, 2014.
Hon. Tom Carper,
Chairman, Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, U.S. 
        Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 231, the 
Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp 
Reauthorization Act of 2013.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Mark 
Grabowicz.
            Sincerely,
                                              Douglas W. Elmendorf.
    Enclosure.

S. 231--Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp 
        Reauthorization Act of 2013

    CBO estimates that implementing S. 231 would have no 
significant discretionary cost to the federal government. 
Because the act would affect on-budget direct spending, pay-as-
you-go procedures apply, but CBO estimates that those effects 
would not be significant. S. 231 would not affect revenues.
    The Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal 
Stamp Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-241) directed the United 
States Postal Service (USPS) to issue a special stamp for 
first-class mail. Any amounts collected from the special stamp 
(called a semipostal), after accounting for USPS administrative 
costs, were transferred to the United States Fish and Wildlife 
Service (USFWS) for expenditure on programs to support 
endangered species. The Postal Service stopped selling these 
stamps at the end of 2013; S. 231 would direct USPS to make 
these stamps available until at least October of 2017.
    We anticipate that the Postal Service would charge 60 cents 
for each multinational species semipostal stamp, and payments 
above the regular first-class postage rate (currently 49 cents) 
would be treated as offsetting collections (that is, a credit 
against spending) of the Postal Service. Based on past sales of 
this semipostal, we expect that the increase in offsetting 
collections from enacting S. 231 would be about $1 million 
annually. Payments of those funds to the USFWS would be outlays 
of the Postal Service and offsetting collections to the USFWS, 
which would spend those amounts, mostly in the same year. CBO 
estimates that the net change in outlays of the Postal Service 
(which is off-budget) and the USFWS (which is on-budget) would 
not be significant in any year.
    S. 231 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would not affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Mark Grabowicz. 
The estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

       VII. Changes to Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law made by 
S. 231, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law 
proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new 
matter is printed in italic, and existing law in which no 
change is proposed is shown in roman):

MULTINATIONAL SPECIES CONSERVATION FUNDS SEMIPOSTAL STAMP ACT OF 2010

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


(2) Multinational Species Conservation Funds Semipostal Stamp
    (a) * * *
    (b) * * *
    (c) Other Terms and Conditions.--
          (1) * * *
          (2) Duration.--The Multinational Species Conservation 
        Funds Semipostal Stamp shall be made available to the 
        public for a period of at least [2 years] 6 years, 
        beginning no later than 12 months after the date of the 
        enactment of this Act [Sept. 30, 2010].

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *