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                                                      Calendar No. 586
114th Congress     }                                    {       Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session        }                                    {      114-314

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



 
     VIRGIN ISLANDS OF THE UNITED STATES CENTENNIAL COMMISSION ACT

                                _______
                                

                August 30, 2016.--Ordered to be printed

   Filed, under authority of the order of the Senate of July 14, 2016

                                _______
                                

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

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 2615]

    The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, to which was 
referred the bill (H.R. 2615) to establish the Virgin Islands 
of the United States Centennial Commission, having considered 
the same, reports favorably thereon without amendment, and 
recommends that the bill do pass.

                                PURPOSE

    The purpose of H.R. 2615 is to establish the Virgin Islands 
of the United States Centennial Commission.

                          BACKGROUND AND NEED

    The transfer of the Virgin Islands from Denmark to the 
United States in 1917 was a significant historic and cultural 
event. H.R. 2615 creates a bipartisan federal commission that 
will develop, plan, and execute formal commemorative activities 
to honor the rich heritage of the U.S. Virgin Islands and 
celebrate the 100th anniversary of its status as a U.S. 
territory.

                          LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    H.R. 2615 was introduced on June 2, 2015, by Representative 
Plaskett (D-VI) and referred to the House Committee on 
Oversight and Government Reform. On March 1, 2016, the 
Committee on Oversight and Government Reform ordered H.R. 2615 
favorably reported, as amended, by voice vote. On April 26, 
2016, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 2615 by voice 
vote.
    On April 27, 2016, H.R. 2615 was received in the Senate and 
referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
    The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources met in open 
business session on July 13, 2016, and ordered H.R. 2615 
favorably reported.

                        COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

    The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, in 
open business session on July 13, 2016, by a majority voice 
vote of a quorum present, recommends that the Senate pass H.R. 
2615.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    Section 1 designates the short title of the bill as the 
``Virgin Islands of the United States Centennial Commission 
Act.''

Section 2. Establishment

    Section 2 establishes a Virgin Islands of the United States 
Centennial Commission (Commission).

Section 3. Duties of the Commission

    Section 3 requires the Commission to plan and implement 
activities to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Virgin 
Islands of the United States (USVI) becoming an unincorporated 
territory of the United States, and provide advice and 
assistance to federal, state and local government agencies, and 
civic groups to carry out commemorative activities. This 
section further requires the Commission to submit reports to 
the President and Congress pursuant to section 7.

Section 4. Membership

    The Commission is to be composed of eight members, 
including the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Insular 
Affairs or a designee, one member appointed by the USVI 
Governor or a designee; two members of the U.S. House of 
Representatives appointed by the Speaker of the House; one 
member of the House of Representatives appointed by the 
Minority Leader of the House; two members of the U.S. Senate 
appointed by the Majority Leader of the Senate; and one member 
of the Senate appointed by the Minority Leader of the Senate.
    This section requires that members be appointed no later 
than 90 days after the date of the Act's enactment and 
specifies that a vacancy shall not affect the powers of the 
Commission. Pursuant to this section, vacancies are to be 
filled in the manner in which the original appointment was 
made, a majority of the members shall constitute a quorum to 
conduct business, and the chairperson of the Commission shall 
be selected by a majority vote of the members. Members shall 
not receive compensation for duties of the Commission, but 
shall be reimbursed for travel and per diem for duties of the 
Commission.

Section 5. Director and Staff of Commission

    Section 5 requires the Commission to appoint an Executive 
Director and other personnel needed to enable the Commission to 
perform its duties. The personnel may be appointed without 
regard to the provisions governing appointments in the 
competitive service, and the rate of pay may not exceed level 
III of the Executive Schedule. The Commission may also hire 
experts and consultants and accept and use voluntary and 
uncompensated services.
    Section 5 further authorizes the Secretary of the Interior 
or the Archivist of the United States to detail any personnel 
to assist the Commission to perform duties.

Section 6. Powers of the Commission

    Section 6 allows the Commission to hold hearings, take 
testimony, and receive evidence the Commission determines 
appropriate to carry out this Act. The Commission may use the 
U.S. mail service in the same manner as other federal agencies, 
and at the request of the chairperson, may secure official 
federal agency information to perform the duties of the 
Commission.
    This section permits the Commission to solicit, accept, and 
use gifts or donations of money, services, or property, both 
real and personal, to aid the work of the Commission. The 
Commission may enter into contracts with and compensate 
federal, state and local governments, and private entities. 
Upon request of the Commission, the Administrator of the 
Government Services Administration shall make available to the 
Commission, at the normal rental rate for federal agencies, 
assistance and facilities that may be needed for the Commission 
to perform its duties.

Section 7. Reports

    Section 7 requires the Commission to submit an annual 
report to the President and the Congress on the activities, 
revenue, and expenditures of the Commission including a list of 
each gift with a value of more than $250, along with the 
identity of the donor.

Section 8. Annual audit

    Section 8 authorizes the Inspector General of the 
Department of the Interior to conduct an audit of the 
Commission.

Section 9. Definitions

    Section 9 defines various terms in the Act.

Section 10. Termination

    Section 10 requires the Commission to terminate no later 
than September 30, 2018.

Section 11. No additional funds authorized

    Section 11 stipulates that no federal funds are authorized 
or may be obligated to carry out this Act.

                   COST AND BUDGETARY CONSIDERATIONS

    The following estimate of costs of this measure has been 
provided by the Congressional Budget Office:

H.R. 2615--Virgin Islands of the United States Centennial Commission 
        Act

    H.R. 2615 would establish a commission to plan, develop, 
and coordinate the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Virgin Islands 
becoming an unincorporated territory of the United States. The 
eight commission members would serve without pay but would be 
reimbursed for travel expenses. The commission would be 
authorized to hire staff and could use the employees and 
services of the Department of the Interior and the National 
Archives on a reimbursable basis. Under the legislation the 
commission could spend gifts and contributions to cover its 
costs, but the use of appropriated funds would be prohibited. 
The commission would terminate by September 30, 2018.
    CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 2615 would have no 
significant net effect on the federal budget. The legislation 
would affect direct spending because it would authorize the 
commission to accept and spend monetary gifts. Therefore, pay-
as-you-go procedures apply. However, CBO estimates that the net 
effect on direct spending would be negligible. Enacting H.R. 
2615 would not affect revenues.
    CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 2615 would not increase 
net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four 
consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2027.
    H.R. 2615 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.
    On March 18, 2016, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for H.R. 
2615, as ordered reported by the House Committee on Oversight 
and Government Reform on March 1, 2016. The two versions of the 
legislation and CBO's estimates of their budgetary effects are 
the same.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Matthew 
Pickford. The estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                      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 H.R. 2615. 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 H.R. 2615, as ordered reported.

                   CONGRESSIONALLY DIRECTED SPENDING

    H.R. 2615, 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.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee notes that no 
changes in existing law are made by the bill as ordered 
reported.

                                  [all]