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116th Congress   }                                     {       Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session     }                                     {      116-288

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



 
              PROTECT AND RESTORE AMERICA'S ESTUARIES ACT

                                _______
                                

 November 13, 2019.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. DeFazio, from the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 4044]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom 
was referred the bill (H.R. 4044) to amend the Federal Water 
Pollution Control Act to reauthorize the National Estuary 
Program, 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...........................................     1
Background and Need for Legislation..............................     2
Hearings.........................................................     3
Legislative History and Consideration............................     3
Committee Votes..................................................     3
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................     4
New Budget Authority and Tax Expenditures........................     4
Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate........................     4
Performance Goals and Objectives.................................     5
Duplication of Federal Programs..................................     5
Congressional Earmarks, Limited Tax Benefits, and Limited Tariff 
  Benefits.......................................................     6
Federal Mandates Statement.......................................     6
Preemption Clarification.........................................     6
Advisory Committee Statement.....................................     6
Applicability to Legislative Branch..............................     6
Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation...................     6
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported............     7

                         Purpose of Legislation

    The purpose of H.R. 4044 is to amend section 320 of the 
Federal Water Pollution Control Act (the Clean Water Act) to 
reauthorize Federal appropriations for the National Estuary 
Program (NEP) within the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
through fiscal year 2026.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    The Clean Water Act defines an estuary (and estuarine 
zones) as all or part of the mouth of a river or stream or 
other body of water having an unimpaired natural connection 
with open sea where freshwater from rivers or streams mixes 
with salt water from the ocean.\1\ Estuarine environments are 
unique and highly productive ecosystems critical to the 
ecological and economic well-being of the Nation's coastal 
areas.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\See Section 104(n)(1) of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act 
(33 U.S.C. 1251(n)(4)).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    A healthy estuarine system has a lot relying on it. This 
includes industries that represent the economic centers for 
jobs and commerce in coastal states, such as fishing, 
recreation, and tourism. They also provide natural areas for 
ports and harbors to support these industries as well as 
general shipping and transportation.
    A diverse range of flora, fauna, birds, fish and other 
wildlife also depend on estuaries. These areas provide habitat, 
spawning and nesting grounds, and nutrients for the ecosystem. 
Humans rely on estuaries for all these functions as well as for 
natural water filtration and flood prevention and resiliency 
benefits.
    Despite these inherent values, EPA recognizes that 
estuaries in the United States are under severe stress. The 
impacts of human development and increased pollution cascade 
throughout the ecosystem and watershed--from erosion and water 
quality hazards to declines in species' populations. Ongoing 
threats to estuaries include shoreline erosion and damage to 
infrastructure, excessive nutrient contamination which may 
result in outbreaks of harmful algal blooms, and accelerated 
land loss.
    Recognizing the importance of estuaries and all their 
myriad functions, Congress created the National Estuary Program 
(NEP) in 1987 under section 320 of the Clean Water Act. The NEP 
authorizes States to nominate, and EPA to identify, estuaries 
across the country that may require comprehensive restoration 
planning and long-term protection strategies.
    The NEP aims to address water quality problems in, and 
promote the ecological integrity of, estuaries. This is 
achieved through the convening of a management conference 
compromised of Federal, state, and local government officials, 
as well as local citizens, businessowners, educators, 
researchers, and other interested stakeholders. The management 
conference is responsible for the development and 
implementation of locally-developed estuary management plans, 
called Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plans (CCMPs). 
The CCMP recommends targeted actions specific to the estuary's 
watershed, with a science-driven and consensus-based approach. 
This collaborative process has been successful nationwide and 
has led to the restoration or protection of more than two 
million acres since 2000.
    The United States has about 130 estuaries; however only 28 
estuaries are currently approved to receive Federal assistance 
under the NEP. Appropriated funds are split evenly across all 
28 programs, with a portion also going to a separate grant 
program. The program was created in a 2016 reauthorization, 
offering competitive grant awards for recipients working to 
address issues threatening estuaries and their surrounding 
coastal areas.
    In 2016, Congress reauthorized section 320 of the Clean 
Water Act through fiscal year 2021 (P.L. 114-162). Section 320 
of the Clean Water Act most recently authorized the NEP at 
$26.5 million per year. Federally authorized levels have been 
as high as $35 million per year in past authorizations, and 
current appropriated levels have consistently exceeded the 2016 
authorized level. The authorization of these funds will expire 
in fiscal year 2021.

                                Hearings

    For the purposes of section 103(i) of H. Res. 6 of the 
116th Congress, the following hearing was used to develop or 
consider H.R. 4044:
    On June 25, 2019, the Subcommittee on Water Resources and 
Environment held a hearing, titled, ``Protecting and Restoring 
America's Iconic Waters.'' The Subcommittee received testimony 
from: Preston D. Cole, Secretary, Wisconsin Department of 
Natural Resources; Dave Pine, Supervisor, District 1, San Mateo 
County Board of Supervisors, Chair of the San Francisco Bay 
Restoration Authority Governing Board; Laura Blackmore, 
Executive Director, Puget Sound Partnership; William C. Baker, 
President, Chesapeake Bay Foundation; Kristi Trail, Executive 
Director, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation; and Tom Ford, 
Director, Santa Monica Bay National Estuary Program, The Bay 
Foundation. Topics discussed at the hearing include the 
importance of reauthorizing increased Federal appropriations 
for EPA's National Estuaries Program to assist states and 
communities to leverage additional funding for the restoration 
and preservation of estuaries throughout the country.

                 Legislative History and Consideration

    H.R. 4044 was introduced on July 25, 2019, by Mr. 
Malinowski, Mrs. Fletcher, and Mr. Graves of Louisiana and 
referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. 
Within the Committee, H.R. 4044 was referred to the 
Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment.
    The Chair discharged the Subcommittee on Water Resources 
and Environment from further consideration of H.R. 4044 on 
September 19, 2019.
    The Committee met in open session to consider H.R. 4044 on 
September 19, 2019, and ordered the measure to be reported to 
the House with a favorable recommendation, without amendment, 
by voice vote, a quorum being present.

                            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 recorded votes taken in connection with 
consideration of H.R. 4044.

                      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. 4044 from the 
Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                   Washington, DC, October 2, 2019.
Hon. Peter A. DeFazio,
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. 4044, the Protect 
and Restore America's Estuaries Act.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Stephen 
Rabent.
            Sincerely,
                                         Phillip L. Swagel,
                                                          Director.
    Enclosure.

              [GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]
    

    Under current law $26.5 million is authorized to be 
appropriated in 2020 and 2021 for the Environmental Protection 
Agency's (EPA's) National Estuary Program. The bill would 
eliminate those authorizations, but would authorize the 
appropriation of $50 million a year over the 2022-2026 period 
for the program.
    Under the National Estuary Program, EPA designates national 
estuaries and establishes a management conference that 
implements conservation and management plan for estuaries. EPA 
provides grants and makes competitive awards to aid 
implementation of those plans. The Congress appropriated $27 
million in 2019 for those purposes. H.R. 4044 would add several 
new areas to a list of regions that EPA is required to give 
priority consideration to under the program, expand the 
selection criteria for competitive awards, and expand the 
purpose of management conferences to include addressing the 
effects of extreme weather events and increasing public 
education on the conditions of the estuary.
    Assuming appropriation action consistent with the bill and 
based on historical spending patterns, CBO estimates that 
implementing the bill would cost $70 million over the 2020-2024 
period and $127 million after 2024. The costs of the 
legislation, detailed in Table 1, fall within budget function 
300 (natural resources and environment).

                                                   TABLE 1.--ESTIMATED BUDGETARY EFFECTS OF H.R. 4044
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                        By fiscal year, millions of dollars--
                                                           ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                             2020    2021    2022   2023   2024   2025   2026   2027   2028   2029  2020-2024  2020-2029
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                Increases or Decreases (-) in Spending Subject to Appropriation Estimated Authorizations
 
Estimated Authorizations..................................     -26     -26     50     50     50     50     50      0      0      0        97        197
Estimated Outlays.........................................     -17     -23     25     39     46     50     50     18      8      3        70        197
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Stephen Rabent. 
The estimate was reviewed by H. Samuel Papenfuss, Deputy 
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                    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 
reauthorize Federal appropriations for EPA's National Estuary 
Program, and to provide Federal resources to protect and 
restore the water quality and ecological integrity of estuaries 
of national significance.

                    Duplication of Federal Programs

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(5) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee finds that no provision 
of H.R. 4044 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.

   Congressional Earmarks, Limited Tax Benefits, and Limited Tariff 
                                Benefits

    In compliance with clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, this bill, as reported, contains no 
congressional earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff 
benefits as defined in clause 9(e), 9(f), or 9(g) of the rule 
XXI.

                       Federal Mandates 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 finds that H.R. 4044 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 were created by this 
legislation.

                  Applicability to 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 the Legislation


Sec. 1. Title

    This section provides that this bill may be cited as the 
``Protect and Restore America's Estuaries Act''.

Sec. 2. Management conference

    This section amends section 320(a)(2)(B) of the Clean Water 
Act to codify all existing estuary restoration programs 
currently recognized by the Administrator of EPA.

Sec. 3. Purposes of conference

    This section amends section 320(b)(4) of the Clean Water 
Act to include additional factors for consideration by the 
management conference when each NEP updates its comprehensive 
conservation and management plan.
    Subparagraph (A) maintains existing law for what the plan 
should include in its recommendations.
    Subparagraph (B) requires future comprehensive conservation 
and management plans to address the effects of recurring 
extreme weather events on the estuary. It also requires future 
plans to identify and assess vulnerabilities specific to the 
estuary and develop and implement corresponding adaptation 
strategies.
    Subparagraph (C) requires that future comprehensive 
conservation and management plans identify actions that can 
increase public education and awareness of the ecological 
health and water quality conditions of the estuary.

Sec. 4. Members of conference

    This section amends section 320(c)(5) of the Clean Water 
Act to insert ``nonprofit organizations'' as an eligible member 
of a management conference convened under section 320(a).

Sec. 5. Grants

    This section amends section 320(g)(4)(C) to expand the type 
of projects eligible for selection as recipients for grants 
under section 320(g). Under this provision, NEP funding would 
be specifically authorized to address: (1) ``emerging'' issues 
that threaten the ecological and economic well-being of 
estuaries; (2) issues related to coastal resiliency; (3) 
stormwater runoff; and (4) accelerated land loss. This section 
would also clarify that projects to address extreme weather 
events would be eligible for the consideration of award 
recipients.

Sec. 6. Authorization of appropriations

    This section authorizes appropriations of $50 million 
annually through fiscal year 2026.

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

                  FEDERAL WATER POLLUTION CONTROL ACT



           *       *       *       *       *       *       *
TITLE III--STANDARDS AND ENFORCEMENT

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


SEC. 320. NATIONAL ESTUARY PROGRAM.

  (a) Management Conference.--
          (1) Nomination of estuaries.--The Governor of any 
        State may nominate to the Administrator an estuary 
        lying in whole or in part within the State as an 
        estuary of national significance and request a 
        management conference to develop a comprehensive 
        management plan for the estuary. The nomination shall 
        document the need for the conference, the likelihood of 
        success, and information relating to the factors in 
        paragraph (2).
          (2) Convening of conference.--
                  (A) In general.--In any case where the 
                Administrator determines, on his own initiative 
                or upon nomination of a State under paragraph 
                (1), that the attainment or maintenance of that 
                water quality in an estuary which assures 
                protection of public water supplies and the 
                protection and propagation of a balanced, 
                indigenous population of shellfish, fish, and 
                wildlife, and allows recreational activities, 
                in and on the water, requires the control of 
                point and nonpoint sources of pollution to 
                supplement existing controls of pollution in 
                more than one State, the Administrator shall 
                select such estuary and convene a management 
                conference.
                  (B) Priority consideration.--The 
                Administrator shall give priority consideration 
                under this section to Long Island Sound, New 
                York and Connecticut; Narragansett Bay, Rhode 
                Island; Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts; 
                Massachusetts Bay, Massachusetts (including 
                Cape Cod Bay and Boston Harbor); Puget Sound, 
                Washington; New York-New Jersey Harbor, New 
                York and New Jersey; Delaware Bay, Delaware and 
                New Jersey; Delaware Inland Bays, Delaware; 
                Albermarle Sound, North Carolina; Sarasota Bay, 
                Florida; San Francisco Bay, California; Santa 
                Monica Bay, California; Galveston Bay, Texas; 
                Barataria-Terrebonne Bay estuary complex, 
                Louisiana; Indian River Lagoon, Florida; Lake 
                Pontchartrain Basin, Louisiana and Mississippi; 
                [and Peconic Bay, New York] Peconic Bay, New 
                York; Casco Bay, Maine; Tampa Bay, Florida; 
                Coastal Bend, Texas; San Juan Bay, Puerto Rico; 
                Tillamook Bay, Oregon; Piscataqua Region, New 
                Hampshire; Barnegat Bay, New Jersey; Maryland 
                Coastal Bays, Maryland; Charlotte Harbor, 
                Florida; Mobile Bay, Alabama; Morro Bay, 
                California; and Lower Columbia River, Oregon 
                and Washington.
          (3) Boundary dispute exception.--In any case in which 
        a boundary between two States passes through an estuary 
        and such boundary is disputed and is the subject of an 
        action in any court, the Administrator shall not 
        convene a management conference with respect to such 
        estuary before a final adjudication has been made of 
        such dispute.
  (b) Purposes of Conference.--The purposes of any management 
conference convened with respect to an estuary under this 
subsection shall be to--
          (1) assess trends in water quality, natural 
        resources, and uses of the estuary;
          (2) collect, characterize, and assess data on toxics, 
        nutrients, and natural resources within the estuarine 
        zone to identify the causes of environmental problems;
          (3) develop the relationship between the inplace 
        loads and point and nonpoint loadings of pollutants to 
        the estuarine zone and the potential uses of the zone, 
        water quality, and natural resources;
          (4) develop a comprehensive conservation and 
        [management plan that recommends] management plan 
        that--
                  (A) recommends  priority corrective actions 
                and compliance schedules addressing point and 
                nonpoint sources of pollution to restore and 
                maintain the chemical, physical, and biological 
                integrity of the estuary, including restoration 
                and maintenance of water quality, a balanced 
                indigenous population of shellfish, fish and 
                wildlife, and recreational activities in the 
                estuary, and assure that the designated uses of 
                the estuary are protected;
                  (B) addresses the effects of recurring 
                extreme weather events on the estuary, 
                including the identification and assessment of 
                vul-ner-a-bil-i-ties in the estuary and the 
                development and implementation of adaptation 
                strategies; and
                  (C) increases public education and awareness 
                of the ecological health and water quality 
                conditions of the estuary;
          (5) develop plans for the coordinated implementation 
        of the plan by the States as well as Federal and local 
        agencies participating in the conference;
          (6) monitor the effectiveness of actions taken 
        pursuant to the plan; and
          (7) review all Federal financial assistance programs 
        and Federal development projects in accordance with the 
        requirements of Executive Order 12372, as in effect on 
        September 17, 1983, to determine whether such 
        assistance program or project would be consistent with 
        and further the purposes and objectives of the plan 
        prepared under this section.
For purposes of paragraph (7), such programs and projects shall 
not be limited to the assistance programs and development 
projects subject to Executive Order 12372, but may include any 
programs listed in the most recent Catalog of Federal Domestic 
Assistance which may have an effect on the purposes and 
objectives of the plan developed under this section.
  (c) Members of Conference.--The members of a management 
conference convened under this section shall include, at a 
minimum, the Administrator and representatives of--
          (1) each State and foreign nation located in whole or 
        in part in the estuarine zone of the estuary for which 
        the conference is convened;
          (2) international, interstate, or regional agencies 
        or entities having jurisdiction over all or a 
        significant part of the estuary;
          (3) each interested Federal agency, as determined 
        appropriate by the Administrator;
          (4) local governments having jurisdiction over any 
        land or water within the estuarine zone, as determined 
        appropriate by the Administrator; and
          (5) affected industries, public and private 
        educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, and 
        the general public, as determined appropriate by the 
        Administrator.
  (d) Utilization of Existing Data.--In developing a 
conservation and management plan under this section, the 
management conference shall survey and utilize existing 
reports, data, and studies relating to the estuary that have 
been developed by or made available to Federal, interstate, 
State, and local agencies.
  (e) Period of Conference.--A management conference convened 
under this section shall be convened for a period not to exceed 
5 years. Such conference may be extended by the Administrator, 
and if terminated after the initial period, may be reconvened 
by the Administrator at any time thereafter, as may be 
necessary to meet the requirements of this section.
  (f) Approval and Implementation of Plans.--
          (1) Approval.--Not later than 120 days after the 
        completion of a conservation and management plan and 
        after providing for public review and comment, the 
        Administrator shall approve such plan if the plan meets 
        the requirements of this section and the affected 
        Governor or Governors concur.
          (2) Implementation.--Upon approval of a conservation 
        and management plan under this section, such plan shall 
        be implemented. Funds authorized to be appropriated 
        under titles II and VI and section 319 of this Act may 
        be used in accordance with the applicable requirements 
        of this Act to assist States with the implementation of 
        such plan.
  (g) Grants.--
          (1) Recipients.--The Administrator is authorized to 
        make grants to State, interstate, and regional water 
        pollution control agencies and entities, State coastal 
        zone management agencies, interstate agencies, other 
        public or nonprofit private agencies, institutions, 
        organizations, and individuals.
          (2) Purposes.--Grants under this subsection shall be 
        made to pay for activities necessary for the 
        development and implementation of a comprehensive 
        conservation and management plan under this section.
          (3) Federal share.--The Federal share of a grant to 
        any person (including a State, interstate, or regional 
        agency or entity) under this subsection for a fiscal 
        year--
                  (A) shall not exceed--
                          (i) 75 percent of the annual 
                        aggregate costs of the development of a 
                        comprehensive conservation and 
                        management plan; and
                          (ii) 50 percent of the annual 
                        aggregate costs of the implementation 
                        of the plan; and
                  (B) shall be made on condition that the non-
                Federal share of the costs are provided from 
                non-Federal sources.
          (4) Competitive awards.--
                  (A) In general.--Using the amounts made 
                available under subsection (i)(2)(B), the 
                Administrator shall make competitive awards 
                under this paragraph.
                  (B) Application for awards.--The 
                Administrator shall solicit applications for 
                awards under this paragraph from State, 
                interstate, and regional water pollution 
                control agencies and entities, State coastal 
                zone management agencies, interstate agencies, 
                other public or nonprofit private agencies, 
                institutions, organizations, and individuals.
                  (C) Selection of recipients.--In selecting 
                award recipients under this paragraph, the 
                Administrator shall select recipients that are 
                best able to address urgent, emerging, and 
                challenging issues that threaten the ecological 
                and economic well-being of coastal areas or 
                that relate to coastal resiliency. Such issues 
                shall include--
                          (i) extensive seagrass habitat losses 
                        resulting in significant impacts on 
                        fisheries and water quality;
                          (ii) recurring harmful algae blooms;
                          (iii) unusual marine mammal 
                        mortalities;
                          (iv) invasive exotic species that may 
                        threaten wastewater systems and cause 
                        other damage;
                          (v) jellyfish proliferation limiting 
                        community access to water during peak 
                        tourism seasons;
                          (vi) stormwater runoff;
                          (vii) accelerated land loss;
                          [(vi)] (viii) flooding that may be 
                        related to sea level rise, extreme 
                        weather, or wetland degradation or 
                        loss; and
                          [(vii)] (ix) low dissolved oxygen 
                        conditions in estuarine waters and 
                        related nutrient management.
  (h) Grant Reporting.--Any person (including a State, 
interstate, or regional agency or entity) that receives a grant 
under subsection (g) shall report to the Administrator not 
later than 18 months after receipt of such grants and 
biennially thereafter on the progress being made under this 
section.
  (i) Authorization of Appropriations.--
          (1) In general.--There is authorized to be 
        appropriated to the Administrator [$26,500,000 for each 
        of fiscal years 2017 through 2021] $50,000,000 for each 
        of fiscal years 2022 through 2026 for--
                  (A) expenses relating to the administration 
                of grants or awards by the Administrator under 
                this section, including the award and oversight 
                of grants and awards, except that such expenses 
                may not exceed 5 percent of the amount 
                appropriated under this subsection for a fiscal 
                year; and
                  (B) making grants and awards under subsection 
                (g).
          (2) Allocations.--
                  (A) Conservation and management plans.--Not 
                less than 80 percent of the amount made 
                available under this subsection for a fiscal 
                year shall be used by the Administrator to 
                provide grant assistance for the development, 
                implementation, and monitoring of each of the 
                conservation and management plans eligible for 
                grant assistance under subsection (g)(2).
                  (B) Competitive awards.--Not less than 15 
                percent of the amount made available under this 
                subsection for a fiscal year shall be used by 
                the Administrator for making competitive awards 
                described in subsection (g)(4).
  (j) Research.--
          (1) Programs.--In order to determine the need to 
        convene a management conference under this section or 
        at the request of such a management conference, the 
        Administrator shall coordinate and implement, through 
        the National Marine Pollution Program Office and the 
        National Marine Fisheries Service of the National 
        Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, as appropriate, 
        for one or more estuarine zones--
                  (A) a long-term program of trend assessment 
                monitoring measuring variations in pollutant 
                concentrations, marine ecology, and other 
                physical or biological environmental parameters 
                which may affect estuarine zones, to provide 
                the Administrator the capacity to determine the 
                potential and actual effects of alternative 
                management strategies and measures;
                  (B) a program of ecosystem assessment 
                assisting in the development of (i) baseline 
                studies which determine the state of estuarine 
                zones and the effects of natural and 
                anthropogenic changes, and (ii) predictive 
                models capable of translating information on 
                specific discharges or general pollutant 
                loadings within estuarine zones into a set of 
                probable effects on such zones;
                  (C) a comprehensive water quality sampling 
                program for the continuous monitoring of 
                nutrients, chlorine, acid precipitation 
                dissolved oxygen, and potentially toxic 
                pollutants (including organic chemicals and 
                metals) in estuarine zones, after consultation 
                with interested State, local, interstate, or 
                international agencies and review and analysis 
                of all environmental sampling data presently 
                collected from estuarine zones; and
                  (D) a program of research to identify the 
                movements of nutrients, sediments and 
                pollutants through estuarine zones and the 
                impact of nutrients, sediments, and pollutants 
                on water quality, the ecosystem, and designated 
                or potential uses of the estuarine zones.
          (2) Reports.--The Administrator, in cooperation with 
        the Administrator of the National Oceanic and 
        Atmospheric Administration, shall submit to the 
        Congress no less often than biennially a comprehensive 
        report on the activities authorized under this 
        subsection including--
                  (A) a listing of priority monitoring and 
                research needs;
                  (B) an assessment of the state and health of 
                the Nation's estuarine zones, to the extent 
                evaluated under this subsection;
                  (C) a discussion of pollution problems and 
                trends in pollutant concentrations with a 
                direct or indirect effect on water quality, the 
                ecosystem, and designated or potential uses of 
                each estuarine zone, to the extent evaluated 
                under this subsection; and
                  (D) an evaluation of pollution abatement 
                activities and management measures so far 
                implemented to determine the degree of 
                improvement toward the objectives expressed in 
                subsection (b)(4) of this section.
  (k) Definitions.--For purposes of this section, the terms 
``estuary'' and ``estuarine zone'' have the meanings such terms 
have in section 104(n)(4) of this Act, except that the term 
``estuarine zone'' shall also include associated aquatic 
ecosystems and those portions of tributaries draining into the 
estuary up to the historic height of migration of anadromous 
fish or the historic head of tidal influence, whichever is 
higher.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                                  [all]