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                                                      Calendar No. 207
114th Congress     }                                    {       Report
                                 SENATE
 1st Session       }                                    {      114-127

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



 
 SAWTOOTH NATIONAL RECREATION AREA AND JERRY PEAK WILDERNESS ADDITIONS 
                                  ACT

                                _______
                                

                September 9, 2015.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

  Ms. Murkowski, from the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 583]

    The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, to which was 
referred the bill (S. 583) to establish certain wilderness 
areas in central Idaho and to authorize various land 
conveyances involving National Forest System land and Bureau of 
Land Management land in central Idaho, and for other purposes, 
having considered the same, reports favorably thereon without 
amendment and recommends that the bill do pass.

                                Purpose

    The purpose of S. 583 is to establish certain wilderness 
areas in central Idaho and to authorize various land 
conveyances involving National Forest System land and Bureau of 
Land Management land in central Idaho, and for other purposes.

                          Background and Need

    The Boulder-White Clouds region of central Idaho is 
renowned for its high wild country of mountain peaks and alpine 
lakes. The region includes the Sawtooth National Recreation 
Area, encompassing approximately 780,000 acres within the 
Sawtooth and Salmon-Challis National Forests. The region 
provides world-class recreation opportunities for sportsmen, 
mountain and motor bike users, skiers, snowmobilers, and 
hikers.
    S. 583 would designate three new wilderness areas within 
and adjacent to the Sawtooth National Recreation Area, 
including adjacent lands managed by the Bureau of Land 
Management. The three new wilderness areas are: the 67,998-acre 
Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness, the 90,769-acre White Cloud 
Wilderness, and the 116,898-acre Jim McClure-Jerry Peak 
Wilderness. These areas include spectacular views across 
several mountain ranges and valleys, and are popular 
recreational areas for hunting, fishing, hiking, and camping. 
These areas would be linked together by existing roads and 
trails, complementing the Sawtooth Wilderness, created in 1972. 
In addition, the bill would release four wilderness study areas 
for multiple use management: the Jerry Peak Wilderness Study 
Area, the Jerry Peak West Wilderness Study Area, the Corral-
Horse Basin Wilderness Study Area, and the Boulder Creek 
Wilderness Study Area.
    S. 583 would also continue recreation opportunities and 
access for motorized and mechanized uses by excluding most 
areas presently open to motorized or mechanized use from the 
designated wilderness areas, including the popular Germania 
Creek and Frog Lake Loop trails. S. 583 would close the Ants 
Basin and Castle Divide trails that run through the proposed 
wilderness to motorized and mechanized use consistent with the 
Wilderness Act.
    Because wilderness areas may only be designated by an Act 
of Congress, legislation is necessary to designate the 
Hemingway-Boulder Wilderness, White Cloud Wilderness, and Jim 
McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness within and adjacent to the 
National Conservation Area.

                          Legislative History

    S. 583 was introduced by Senator Risch on February 26, 
2015. The Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests, and Mining 
held a hearing on the bill on May 21, 2015.
    In the 111th Congress, Senators Crapo and Risch introduced 
a similar bill, S. 3294, on April 30, 2010. The Subcommittee on 
Public Lands, Forests, and Mining held a hearing on the bill on 
June 16, 2010 (S. Hrg. 111-730). Representatives Simpson and 
Minnick introduced identical legislation, H.R. 5205, on May 4, 
2010.
    A companion measure (H.R. 1138) was introduced in the House 
by Representative Simpson on February 26, 2015. At a business 
meeting on July 9, 2015, the House Natural Resources Committee 
reported the bill. The House of Representatives passed H.R. 
1138 on July 27, 2015. The Senate passed H.R. 1138 on August 4, 
2015. The President signed H.R. 1138 into law on August 7, 
2015. H.R. 1138 became Public Law No. 114-46.
    At its business meeting on July 30, 2015, the Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources on a voice vote ordered S. 583 
favorably reported without amendment.

                        Committee Recommendation

    The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, in 
open business session on July 30, 2015, by a majority voice 
vote of a quorum present, recommends that the Senate pass S. 
583.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

    Section 1 contains the short title.
    Section 2 contains definitions.

                                TITLE I

    Section 101 designates approximately 275,665 acres as 
wilderness in three new wilderness areas in central Idaho: the 
Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness, the White Clouds Wilderness, and 
the Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness. Section 102(a) provides 
that the wilderness areas shall be administered by the 
Secretary of Agriculture and the Secretary of the Interior, as 
applicable, subject to valid existing rights and in accordance 
with the Wilderness Act. Section 102(b) directs the Secretary 
of Agriculture, the Secretary of the Interior, and the Bureau 
of Land Management to seek to ensure that the wilderness areas 
are interpreted as an overall complex linked by common location 
and identity. Section 102(c) requires the Secretaries to 
develop wilderness management plans collaboratively for the new 
areas within three years of the date of enactment. Section 
102(d) clarifies that the Secretaries may take measures 
necessary for the control of fire, insects, and disease in 
accordance with the Wilderness Act. Section 102(e) allows for 
the grazing of livestock to continue within wilderness areas 
where grazing is established prior to the date of enactment of 
this act. Federal grazing permittees and lessees with grazing 
rights located within the Boulder White Clouds Grazing Area may 
voluntarily donate their grazing permits or leases in whole or 
in part to the appropriate managing agency. The Secretary 
concerned is directed to terminate the donated permit or lease 
and permanently reduce the authorized level of grazing on the 
land covered by the donated permanent or lease. Section 102(f) 
contains wilderness management language clarifying that 
outfitting and guide activities can continue as authorized in 
the Wilderness Act. Section 102(g) clarifies that nothing in 
the title affects the jurisdiction of the State of Idaho with 
respect to the management of fish and wildlife on public land 
in the State. Section 102(h) clarifies that owners of private 
property within the wilderness areas will be provided adequate 
access to their property.
    Section 103 denies any Federal reserved water rights with 
respect to the new wilderness areas and prohibits the President 
from authorizing any new water resource facilities, as defined 
in this section, within the new wilderness areas.
    Section 104 clarifies that nothing in title I restricts or 
precludes low-level military overflights, flight testing and 
evaluation, and the designation of new units of special use 
airspace or the establishment of military flight training 
routes.
    Section 105 clarifies that nothing in title I creates a 
protective buffer zone around the wilderness areas or restricts 
activities or land use outside the wilderness areas.
    Section 106 states that nothing in title I diminishes the 
treaty rights of any Indian tribe.
    Section 107 allows for the Secretaries to acquire 
inholdings by donation, exchange, or purchase from willing 
sellers and directs them to seek an exchange with the State for 
lands within the wilderness areas within three years. If any 
land or interest in land located inside the boundary of a 
wilderness area is acquired by the United States, it will 
become part of the wilderness area and be administered as part 
of it.
    Section 108(a) repeals the portion of the Sawtooth National 
Recreation Area (NRA) establishing legislation (section 5 of 
Public Law 92-400; 16 U.S.C. 460aa-4) that requires review of 
undeveloped areas for suitability for inclusion in the National 
Wilderness Preservation System. The remainder of the Sawtooth 
NRA that is not designated as wilderness is released from 
further study and no longer must be managed to maintain its 
wilderness character. Section 108(b) releases certain public 
land administered by the Bureau of Land Management within the 
following wilderness study areas for multiple use management: 
Jerry Peak Wilderness Study Area, Jerry Peak West Wilderness 
Study Area, Corral-Horse Basin Wilderness Study Area, and 
Boulder Creek Wilderness Study Area.

                                TITLE II

    Section 201 contains the short title.
    Section 202 directs the Secretary of Agriculture to issue a 
special use permit or convey up to one acre of land to Blaine 
County for use as a school bus turnaround.
    Section 203 directs the Secretary of the Interior to convey 
to Custer County approximately 114 acres of land for use as a 
public park and campground, approximately 10 acres for use as a 
fire hall, and approximately 80 acres for use as a waste 
transfer site. This section also directs the Secretary of 
Agriculture to convey a Forest Service road to the City of 
Stanley with the condition that Custer County relocate a 
portion of the road.
    Section 204 directs the Secretary of the Interior to convey 
approximately 460 acres of land to the City of Challis to be 
used for public purposes consistent with the uses under the 
Recreation and Public Purposes Act.
    Section 205 directs the Secretary of the Interior to convey 
to the City of Clayton approximately 23 acres of land for use 
as a public cemetery, approximately two acres for use as a 
public park or other public purpose consistent with the uses 
under the Recreation and Public Purposes Act, approximately two 
acres for location of a water tower, approximately six acres 
for use as a wastewater treatment facility, and approximately 
two acres for use as a fire hall.
    Section 206 directs the Secretary of Agriculture to convey 
to the City of Stanley approximately four acres within the 
Sawtooth NRA but outside the area managed by the Sawtooth 
Interpretive and Historical Association under a special use 
permit, to be developed to provide workforce housing for 
persons employed by the city or its environs. Section 206(b) 
provides that the City may construct up to 20 apartments, 
limits the height of the units to two stories and requires them 
to blend into the terrain. Section 206(c) specifies that the 
private land use regulations of Sawtooth NRA will not apply to 
this parcel. Section 206(d) requires the Secretary to remove 
the existing structure located on the parcel. Section 206(e) 
allows the City to contract for the development and management 
of the apartments so long as the City retains ownership of the 
parcel in perpetuity.
    Section 207(a) states that the Secretary may set 
appropriate terms and conditions on the special use permits or 
land conveyances. Section 207(b) specifies that if any parcel 
of land conveyed under this title ceases to be used for the 
public purpose for which it was conveyed, the land may revert 
to the United States if the Secretary determines that the 
reversion is in the best interest of the United States.

                   Cost and Budgetary Considerations

    The Congressional Budget Office estimate of the costs of 
this measure has been requested but was not received at the 
time the report was filed. When the report is available, the 
Chairman will request it to be printed in the Congressional 
Record for the advice of the Senate.

                      Regulatory Impact Evaluation

    In compliance with paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee makes the following 
evaluation of the regulatory impact which would be incurred in 
carrying out S. 583. The bill is not a regulatory measure in 
the sense of imposing Government-established standards or 
significant economic responsibilities on private individuals 
and businesses.
    No personal information would be collected in administering 
the program. Therefore, there would be no impact on personal 
privacy.
    Little, if any, additional paperwork would result from the 
enactment of S. 583, as ordered reported.

                   Congressionally Directed Spending

    S. 583, as ordered reported, does not contain any 
congressionally directed spending items, limited tax benefits, 
or limited tariff benefits as defined in rule XLIV of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate.

                        Executive Communications

    The testimony provided by the U.S. Forest Service and the 
Bureau of Land Management at the May 21, 2015, Public Lands, 
Forests, and Mining Subcommittee hearing on S. 583 follows:

  Statement of Timothy M. Murphy, Acting Assistant Director, National 
Conservation Lands & Community Partnerships, Bureau of Land Management, 
                       Department of the Interior

    Thank you for the invitation to testify on S. 583, Sawtooth 
National Recreation Area and Jerry Peak Wilderness Additions 
Act. The Department of the Interior supports S. 583 as it 
applies to lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 
and would like the opportunity to work with the sponsor and the 
Committee on technical modifications to the legislation and 
minor boundary modifications to improve manageability. We defer 
to the Department of Agriculture regarding provisions of S. 583 
which apply to National Forest System Lands.


                               background


    The Boulder-White Clouds area of central Idaho captivates 
the imagination with crystal lakes, high mountain backcountry, 
and abundant wildlife. Hunters, hikers, ranchers and other 
stakeholders have come together to support preservation of 
these unique and treasured lands managed by the U.S. Forest 
Service (FS) and the BLM.
    The lands managed by the BLM in this region represent 
diverse ecosystems ranging from lower elevation sagebrush and 
grasses to lodgepole and limber pine at the higher elevations. 
There are large forested areas in the upper reaches of Bear, 
Mosquito, Sage, and Lake Creek drainages. The highest point is 
Jerry Peak at over 10,000 feet where there are spectacular 
vistas of the surrounding mountain ranges. Herd Lake, at over 
7,000 feet, is a small blue gem within the steep rocky terrain. 
From the small Herd Lake campsite visitors can hike the trail 
along the creek to Herd Lake. The shores of the lake have 
scattered pines and there are wonderful opportunities to fish 
for rainbow trout.
    This varied and magnificent terrain provides habitat for 
wildlife, including deer, elk, black bear, mountain lion, 
bighorn sheep, and antelope. Coyotes and golden eagles are also 
common. The area is attractive to hunters and a significant 
portion of the yearly visitation occurs during hunting season.


                                 s. 583


    S. 583 is the result of many years of collaborative efforts 
by the Idaho Congressional delegation. Their dedication to 
resolving public land use issues in central Idaho is 
commendable. Title I of the bill designates three new 
wilderness areas--Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wilderness 
(approximately 117,000 acres), White Clouds Wilderness 
(approximately 91,000 acres), and Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness 
(approximately 68,000 acres) and contains provisions related to 
their administration. Approximately 24,000 acres of the 
proposed Jerry Peak Wilderness are managed by the BLM, along 
with approximately 450 acres of the proposed White Clouds 
Wilderness. The FS manages the other federal lands within the 
proposed wilderness areas. The Department of the Interior 
supports the proposed wilderness designations on lands managed 
by the BLM and would welcome the opportunity to work with the 
sponsor and the Committee on minor boundary modifications to 
the Jerry Peak Wilderness to improve manageability. We would 
also like to recommend minor modifications to management 
language to be consistent with usual wilderness management 
language. Section 108 releases nearly 80,000 acres of BLM-
managed lands in four wilderness study areas (WSAs) from WSA 
restrictions.
    Livestock grazing on the public lands designated as 
wilderness, and in the surrounding area, is addressed in 
section 102(e) of the bill. The BLM supports this standard 
language on the management of livestock grazing on public lands 
within designated wilderness. Section 102(e) also establishes 
the ``Boulder White Clouds Grazing Area'' on nearly 770,000 
acres of public lands administered by the FS and BLM--
surrounding and including the three areas designated as 
wilderness. Under the provisions of this section, ranchers with 
Federal grazing permits or leases within this area may choose 
to voluntarily donate their permits or leases to the Secretary 
of Agriculture or Interior. The Secretaries are required to 
accept these donations, and to permanently terminate all 
grazing on the land covered by the permit or lease. Partial 
donation and congruent partial termination of grazing is also 
provided for under this subsection. Grazing can be a compatible 
use within wilderness, and there is a long history of 
legislation accommodating grazing within wilderness 
designations. However, we also recognize and support the 
proposal by the Idaho delegation to allow voluntary and 
permanent reductions in grazing in these unique and 
environmentally sensitive areas.
    Title II of S. 583 provides for the conveyance, at no cost, 
of 12 small tracts of public lands to local governments for 
public purposes. The BLM generally supports the conveyances of 
nine individual parcels of BLM-administered lands to local 
governments, but notes that some of the parcels to be conveyed 
contain habitat for the Greater Sage-Grouse. We would like the 
opportunity to work with the sponsor on modifications to some 
of the conveyances to minimize impacts to Greater Sage-Grouse 
habitat. We defer to the FS regarding three conveyances of 
National Forest System lands. As provided in the bill, each of 
the conveyances of lands managed by the BLM would be for uses 
consistent with public purposes allowed under the R&PP Act, 
which authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to lease or 
convey public lands at nominal cost for recreational and public 
purposes, including parks and other facilities benefiting the 
public. In general, the BLM supports appropriate legislative 
conveyances if the lands are to be used for purposes consistent 
with the Recreation and Public Purposes (R&PP) Act, if the 
conveyance includes a reversionary clause to enforce this 
requirement, and if the benefitting local government is 
responsible for the administrative costs of the conveyance.
    Among the proposed conveyances of BLM-administered public 
lands are 10 acres for a fire hall, 80 acres for a waste 
transfer site to Custer County, and 23 acres to the city of 
Clayton for a cemetery. The BLM has reviewed each of these 
conveyances in the bill. We believe they are in the public 
interest, and support their no-cost conveyance for uses that 
would be allowed under the R&PP Act if the bill is amended to 
provide that the receiving parties cover the costs of the 
conveyances, including any needed surveys and the preparation 
of conveyance documents.


                               conclusion


    Thank you for the opportunity to testify in support of S. 
583. We applaud the work of the Idaho delegation, of the 
sponsor of this bill, Senator Risch, and the vision and 
commitment of Congressman Mike Simpson, who has championed the 
effort to protect these unique landscapes in Idaho for over a 
decade in partnership with his colleagues in the Senate.
    We look forward to working with Members of the Idaho 
delegation and the Committee to make further, minor 
modifications to the bill to permanently protect these 
important landscapes as a part of the National Wilderness 
Preservation System and to effect the land transfers directed 
in the bill to provide specific public benefits to local 
communities.
                              ----------                              


Statement of Leslie Weldon, Deputy Chief National Forest System, Forest 
                   Service, Department of Agriculture

    Mr. Chairman and members of the Subcommittee, thank you for 
the opportunity to present the views of the U.S. Department of 
Agriculture (USDA) regarding S. 583, the ``Sawtooth National 
Recreation Area and Jerry Peak Wilderness Additions Act''. To 
Senator Risch and other members of the Idaho delegation, we 
wish to thank you for your work on this bill. The Department 
supports the bill as it applies to lands managed by the Forest 
Service. We have included recommendations for your 
consideration, and we have also included concerns with the Bill 
that we would like to work with the Committee and sponsor to 
address. We defer to the Department of the Interior for matters 
concerning land administered by the Bureau of Land Management.


                    title i--wilderness designations


    Section 101 would add additional areas in central Idaho to 
the National Wilderness Preservation System--68,000 acres in 
the Sawtooth and Challis National Forests to be known as the 
``Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness''; 90,777 acres in the Sawtooth 
and Challis National Forests to be known as the ``White Clouds 
Wilderness''; and approximately 120,148 acres in the Salmon-
Challis National Forest and Challis District of the Bureau of 
Land Management to be known as the ``Jim McClure-Jerry Peak 
Wilderness.''
    The Department supports designation of the Hemingway-
Boulders, White Clouds and Jim McClure-Jerry Peak Wildernesses 
as depicted on the maps referenced in the Bill. Most of the 
National Forest System acres that would be designated as 
wilderness by the bill were recommended for wilderness 
designation in their respective forest plan. The National 
Forest System acres that would be designated as wilderness by 
the bill that were not recommended for wilderness in their plan 
are either inventoried roadless areas or their current 
management direction is compatible with wilderness designation.
    We recommend that language be added to the bill that would 
authorize the agency to maintain historical structures that may 
exist in the designated wilderness areas. The agency has 
language that we would be happy to share with you.
    Section 102(e)(1) addresses livestock grazing on the lands 
designated as wilderness. The Department supports the language 
requiring the continuation of existing livestock grazing within 
designated wilderness in accordance with the 1964 Wilderness 
Act and House Report 96-617, also known as the ``Congressional 
Grazing Guidelines.'' We also support the proposal by the Idaho 
delegation in section 102(e)(2) to allow voluntary and 
permanent reductions in grazing in the designated areas. We 
would like to work with the sponsor and Committee on technical 
issues with the language of section 102(e)(2) regarding the 
donation of grazing permits. The Department also has minor 
technical corrections regarding references to provisions of the 
Wilderness Act in Section 102 of the Bill that we would be 
happy to share with the Committee.
    The Department has concerns with section 103(b). The 
President's discretion under the Wilderness Act to review and 
approve any potential water resource facilities that is deemed 
in the national interest should not be limited.


             title ii--and conveyances for public purposes


    Section 202 requires either conveyance or issuance of a 
special use authorization of a one acre parcel to Blaine 
County, Idaho for a school bus turnaround. Recently, Blaine 
County commissioners informed the Forest Service that they are 
no longer interested in developing a turnaround at this 
location. We recommend removing this section.
    Section 203(d) requires the conveyance, without 
consideration, of the Forest Service road that passes through 
the parcel of National Forest System land, to the City of 
Stanley, Idaho, under section 206. The Department has concerns 
with conveying the road because the Forest Service currently 
manages the parcel that the road accesses. In addition, the 
Department believes the public should be appropriately 
compensated for its resources.
    Section 206 requires the Secretary of Agriculture to convey 
an approximately four-acre parcel to the City of Stanley, Idaho 
for workforce housing. The City of Stanley is iconic on the 
central Idaho landscape. It is also a Designated Community 
under the Private Land Regulation and intrinsic to the Sawtooth 
National Recreation Area. The Department recognizes that the 
need for local workforce housing is a challenging concern for 
the City. We share that concern as the lack of housing can 
result in unauthorized use of National Forest System lands. 
However, the Department has concerns with section 206 as 
currently drafted and would like to work with the Committee to 
resolve these concerns.
    The bill directs conveyance of the parcel for no 
consideration. Our consistently-held position is that the 
public must be compensated for its resources. Additionally, the 
bill requires removal of Forest Service improvements that are 
currently being used at the public's expense. The identified 
parcel is physically separated from the City of Stanley and 
surrounded by Federal land. We would welcome the opportunity to 
work with the sponsors and the City to identify a parcel that 
is potentially better suited for private development, including 
a Federal parcel within the developed area of Stanley and 
adjacent to existing infrastructure.
    This concludes my remarks. Thank you for the opportunity to 
testify.

                        Changes in Existing Law

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law made by 
the bill S. 583, as ordered reported, are shown as follows 
(existing law proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black 
brackets, new matter is printed in italic, existing law in 
which no change is proposed is shown in roman):

AN ACT To establish the Sawtooth National Recreation Area in the State 
 of Idaho, to temporarily withdraw certain national forest land in the 
State of Idaho from the operation of the United States mining laws, and 
                          for other purposes.

(Public Law 92-400)

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


    [Sec. 5. The Secretary shall, as soon as practicable after 
the enactment of this Act, review the undeveloped and 
unimproved portion or portions of the recreation area as to 
suitability or nonsuitability for preservation as a part of the 
National Wilderness Preservation System. In conducting his 
review, the Secretary shall comply with the provisions of 
subsection 3(d) of the Wilderness Act of September 3, 1964 (78 
Stat. 892), relating to public notice, public hearings, and 
review by State and other agencies, and shall advise the Senate 
and House of Representatives of his recommendations with 
respect to the designation as wilderness of the area or areas 
reviewed.]

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                                  [all]