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116th Congress }                                       { Rept. 116-559
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session    }                                       { Part 1



October 9, 2020.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed


 Mr. Grijalva, from the Committee on Natural Resources, submitted the 

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 5179]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 5179) to require the Secretary of the Interior 
to establish Tribal Wildlife Corridors, and for other purposes, 
having considered the same, reports favorably thereon without 
amendment and recommends that the bill do pass.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of H.R. 5179 is to require the Secretary of the 
Interior to establish a Tribal Wildlife Corridors program, 
allowing for greater habitat connectivity on tribal lands 
nominated by Indian tribes.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    Migration and habitat connectivity are key to the survival 
of many North American species. Some species must travel across 
large areas to find food or a mate;\1\ other species complete 
annual migrations to breeding or feeding grounds. For example, 
each spring, thousands of Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem elk 
move from their lower altitude winter ranges to their higher 
altitude summer ranges.\2\ The recovery of some endangered 
species also depends upon migrations: for example, the 
endangered Florida panther's distribution must push north in 
order for the population to reestablish across its historic 
range.\3\ Wildlife migration and distribution are also 
essential to species survival under human-induced climate 
change. For example, one meta-analysis study has estimated that 
terrestrial species are already moving to higher latitudes at a 
median rate of 16.9 kilometers per decade.\4\
    \1\See, e.g., U.S. Fish & Wildlife Serv., Gray wolf, Canis lupus 
    \2\Elk Migrations of the Greater Yellowstone, Univ. of Wyo., Wyo. 
Migration Initiative,
migrations-greater-yellowstone (last visited June 10, 2020).
    \3\See U.S. Fish & Wildlife Serv., Florida Panther Multi-Species 
Recovery Plan for South Florida 4-120 (1999),
    \4\I-Ching Chen, Jane K. Hill, Ralf Ohlemuller, David B. Roy & 
Chris D. Thomas, Rapid Range Shifts of Species Associated with High 
Levels of Climate Warming, 333 (6045) Science 1024 (2011), DOI: 
    However, much wildlife migration in North America is 
impeded by human-made infrastructure. Roads, fences, energy 
infrastructure, agricultural fields, pastures, and residential 
development all can block or detour migrating wildlife. Such 
habitat fragmentation hinders the movement of individual 
animals, the migration of populations, the search for food, and 
reproduction.\5\ If barriers exist that prevent species from 
reaching suitable habitat, species may be forced to live in 
unsuitable habitat, increasing their risk of extinction.\6\ In 
certain cases where highways cross commonly-used wildlife 
migration routes, public safety is threatened by an increased 
risk of vehicle-wildlife collisions.\7\
    \5\USDA, Nat. Res. Conservation Serv., National Biology Handbook 
Aquatic and Terrestrial Habitat Resources, pt. 614.4, Conservation 
Corridor Planning at the Landscape Level Managing for Wildlife Habitat 
(1999), ch.2, Habitat Fragmentation,
    \6\See, e.g., Gretta T. Pecl et al., Biodiversity Redistribution 
Under Climate Change: Impacts on Ecosystems and Human Well-Being 2, 3, 
335 Science (2017), DOI: 10.1126/science.aai9214, https://
    \7\W. Ass'n of Fish & Wildlife, Mule Deer Working Grp., 
Understanding Mule Deer Migration Fact Sheet #12 (2014), https://
    Developing and restoring wildlife corridors can allow 
species to complete their migrations and decrease wildlife 
collisions and related human injuries.\8\ Corridors vary widely 
in size and shape, and include natural corridors such as 
riparian zones and streams that naturally connect wetlands and 
watersheds, and artificially constructed ones such as 
overpasses and underpasses on highways.\9\
    \8\See, e.g., Large-Scale Networks, Conservation Corridor, http://
networks/ (last visited July 1, 2020); Kelley M Stewart, U. of Nev. 
Reno Dep't of Nat. Res. & Envtl. Sci. (Prepared for Nev. Dep't of 
Transp.), Effectiveness of Wildlife Crossing Structures to Minimize 
Traffic Collisions with Mule Deer and Other Wildlife in Nevada (2015),
    \9\See, e.g., Corridor FAQ, Conservation Corridor, https:// (last visited June 
10, 2020).
    Many tribes are already integrating wildlife corridors in 
their planning and infrastructure. Tribes, including the 
Navajo, Southern Ute, Ute Mountain Ute, and the Jicarilla 
Apache, have already taken actions to promote and study 
wildlife corridors, including conducting connectivity analyses, 
modeling habitat suitability data, conducting studies using GPS 
collars to track mule deer movements, and even creating systems 
of corridors for species like elk, bighorn sheep, mule deer, 
and pronghorn.
    On October 17, 2019, in a hearing held by the Subcommittee 
on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife, Gloria Tom of the Navajo Nation 
Department of Fish and Wildlife testified in support of H.R. 
2795, the Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act, in which there 
is a title (Title II) nearly identical to H.R. 5179. In her 
testimony, she stated that federal recognition of Tribal 
Wildlife Corridors will support tribes ``in their efforts to 
allow fish and wildlife to continue to move through tribal and 
adjacent lands and waters.''\10\ She also testified that 
funding is essential to maintenance and restoration of a 
successful corridors program, and that the Title II would 
increase cooperation and coordination with federal land 
managers and private landowners.\11\ Enabling such coordination 
is ``one of the main challenges facing migratory corridors,'' 
which necessarily span across borders and jurisdictions.\12\
    \10\Hearing on H.R. 2795 and H.R. 3742 Before the H. Subcomm. on 
Waters, Oceans, & Wildlife, 116th Cong. (2019) (not printed), https:// (written 
testimony of Gloria Tom, Dir., Navajo Nation Dep't of Fish & Wildlife),

                            Committee Action

    H.R. 5179 was introduced on November 19, 2019, by 
Representative Ruben Gallego (D-AZ). The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Natural Resources, and in addition to the 
Committee on Agriculture. Within the Natural Resources 
Committee, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Water, 
Oceans, and Wildlife and to the Subcommittee for Indigenous 
Peoples of the United States. On January 29, 2020, the Natural 
Resources Committee met to consider the bill. The Subcommittees 
were discharged by unanimous consent. No amendments were 
offered, and the bill was adopted and ordered favorably 
reported to the House of Representatives by a roll call vote of 
22 yeas and 15 nays, as follows:

    On July 1, 2020, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 
2, the Moving Forward Act, which included the text of H.R. 5179 
with minor changes.\13\
    \13\H.R. 2, 116th Cong. tit. III, subtitle B, ch.2, subchapter B 
(as passed by and engrossed in the House, July 1, 2020).


    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. 5179: legislative hearing by the Subcommittee on 
Water, Oceans, and Wildlife held on October 17, 2019.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

    Section 1. Short title. ``Tribal Wildlife Corridors Act of 
    Section 2. Definitions. This section defines relevant 
    Section 3. Establishment of Tribal Wildlife Corridors. This 
section establishes a framework through which tribes may 
nominate and the Secretary of the Interior may designate a 
Tribal Wildlife Corridor, including a timeline for 
consideration by the Secretary and process for removal of a 
corridor designation by a tribe. This section also develops 
minimum criteria for recognition of a Tribal Wildlife Corridor, 
including: the restoration of historical habitat to facilitate 
connectivity; the management of the land to facilitate 
connectivity; and management of the land to prevent barriers 
that inhibit future connectivity.
    Section 4. Coordination of land use plans. This section 
amends the Federal Land Policy and Management Act by requiring 
the Secretary to conduct meaningful consultation with the tribe 
that administers a Tribal Wildlife Corridor to determine 
whether the corridor can be expanded into public lands or can 
otherwise benefit connectivity between public lands and the 
corridor. This section also requires coordination with the U.S. 
Forest Service to determine whether land use plans in the 
National Forest System would provide additional connectivity.
    Section 5. Technical assistance. This section requires the 
Secretary to provide technical assistance to tribes for the 
establishment, management, and expansion of Tribal Wildlife 
Corridors, including with data and research.
    Section 6. Availability of assistance. This section allows 
the Secretary of Agriculture to prioritize conservation project 
applications that would enhance connectivity through the 
expansion of a Tribal Wildlife Corridor. These projects include 
conservation reserve programs, environmental quality 
incentives, conservation stewardship programs, and agricultural 
conservation easement programs established under the Food 
Security Act. This section also requires the Secretary of the 
Interior to establish a Tribal Wildlife Corridor grant program 
within three years of enactment.
    Section 7. Savings clause. This section ensures that 
nothing in this Act authorizes or affects the use of private 
property or Indian land.

            Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations

    Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee on Natural Resources' oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.

                  Compliance With House Rule XIII and 
                        Congressional Budget Act

    1. Cost of Legislation and the Congressional Budget Act. 
With respect to the requirements of clause 3(c)(2) and (3) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
sections 308(a) and 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974, the Committee has received the following estimate for the 
bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                      Washington, DC, May 29, 2020.
Hon. Raul M. Grijalva,
Chairman, Committee on Natural Resources,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 5179, the Tribal 
Wildlife Corridors Act of 2019.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Janani 
                                         Phillip L. Swagel,


    H.R. 5179 would direct the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 
(USFWS) to establish a program to designate wildlife corridors 
on tribal land and to provide related grants to tribes 
beginning no later than three years after enactment.
    For this estimate, CBO assumes that the legislation will be 
enacted in late 2020. Under that assumption, the agency could 
incur some costs in 2020, but CBO expects that most of the 
costs would be incurred in 2021 and later.
    Based on the costs of similar activities, CBO estimates 
that USFWS would require two additional employees at an average 
annual cost of $125,000 each to manage the program. In 2019, 
USFWS awarded $2 million to states to conserve habitat 
corridors for several species. On that basis, CBO estimates 
that the agency would award similar amounts under H.R. 5179. 
Assuming USFWS takes three years to implement the grant 
program, we expect that the agency would begin to obligate 
funds late in 2023. H.R. 5179 also would direct the Forest 
Service and the Department of the Interior to coordinate land 
use planning with tribes. CBO estimates that annual costs for 
that provision would be insignificant and would be incurred 
when those plans are updated. In total, we estimate that 
implementing H.R. 5179 would cost $6 million over the 2020-2025 
period; any spending would be subject to the availability of 
appropriated funds.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Janani 
Shankaran. The estimate was reviewed by H. Samuel Papenfuss, 
Deputy Director of Budget Analysis.
    2. General Performance Goals and Objectives. As required by 
clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general performance goals and 
objectives of this bill are to require the Secretary of the 
Interior to establish a Tribal Wildlife Corridors program, 
allowing for greater habitat connectivity on tribal lands 
nominated by Indian tribes.

                           Earmark Statement

    This bill does not contain any Congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined 
under clause 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule XXI of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives.

                 Unfunded Mandates Reform Act Statement

    This bill contains no unfunded mandates.

                           Existing Programs

    This bill does not establish or reauthorize a program of 
the federal government known to be duplicative of another 
program. Such program was not included in any report from the 
Government Accountability Office to Congress pursuant to 
section 21 of Public Law 111-139. The Wildlife Movements Grant 
Program required by section 6(b) of the bill is related and 
complementary to, but not duplicative of, the following 
programs identified in the most recent Catalog of Federal 
Domestic Assistance published pursuant to 31 U.S.C. Sec. 6104: 
Conservation Reserve Program (CFDA No. 10.069), Environmental 
Quality Incentives Program (CFDA No. 10.912), Conservation 
Stewardship Program (CFDA No. 10.924), Agricultural 
Conservation Easement Program (CFDA No. 10.931), Fish, Wildlife 
and Plant Conservation Resource Management (CFDA No. 15.231), 
Plant Conservation and Restoration Management (CFDA No. 
15.245), Threatened and Endangered Species (CFDA No. 15.246), 
Wildlife Resource Management (CFDA No. 15.247), and Partners 
for Fish and Wildlife (CFDA No. 15.631).

                  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.

               Preemption of State, Local, or Tribal Law

    Any preemptive effect of this bill over state, local, or 
tribal law is intended to be consistent with the bill's 
purposes and text and the Supremacy Clause of Article VI of the 
U.S. Constitution.

         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 italics, and existing law in which no 
change is proposed is shown in roman):


           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                           land use planning

  Sec. 202. (a) The Secretary shall, with public involvement 
and consistent with the terms and conditions of this Act, 
develop, maintain, and, when appropriate, revise land use plans 
which provide by tracts or areas for the use of the public 
lands. Land use plans shall be developed for the public lands 
regardless of whether such lands previously have been 
classified, withdrawn, set aside, or otherwise designated for 
one or more uses.
  (b) In the development and revision of land use plans, the 
Secretary of Agriculture shall coordinate land use plans for 
lands in the National Forest System with the land use planning 
and management programs of and for [Indian tribes by] Indian 
          (1) by  among other things, considering the policies 
        of approved tribal land resource management 
        programs[.]; and
          (2) for the purposes of determining whether the land 
        use plans for land in the National Forest System would 
        provide additional connectivity to benefit the purposes 
        of a Tribal Wildlife Corridor established under section 
        3(a) of the Tribal Wildlife Corridors Act of 2019.
  (c) In the development and revision of land use plans, the 
Secretary shall--
          (1) use and observe the principles of multiple use 
        and sustained yield set forth in this and other 
        applicable law;
          (2) use a systematic interdisciplinary approach to 
        achieve integrated consideration of physical, 
        biological, economic, and other sciences;
          (3) give priority to the designation and protection 
        of areas of critical environmental concern;
          (4) rely, to the extent it is available, on the 
        inventory of the public lands, their resources, and 
        other values;
          (5) consider present and potential uses of the public 
          (6) consider the relative scarcity of the values 
        involved and the availability of alternative means 
        (including recycling) and sites for realization of 
        those values;
          (7) weigh long-term benefits to the public against 
        short-term benefits;
          (8) provide for compliance with applicable pollution 
        control laws, including State and Federal air, water, 
        noise, or other pollution standards or implementation 
        plans; and
          (9) to the extent consistent with the laws governing 
        the administration of the public lands, coordinate the 
        land use inventory, planning, and management activities 
        of or for such lands with the land use planning and 
        management programs of other Federal departments and 
        agencies and of the States and local governments within 
        which the lands are located, including, but not limited 
        to, the statewide outdoor recreation plans developed 
        under chapter 2003 of title 54, United States Code, and 
        of or for Indian tribes by, among other things, 
        considering the policies of approved State and tribal 
        land resource management programs. In implementing this 
        directive, the Secretary shall, to the extent he finds 
        practical, keep apprised of State, local, and tribal 
        land use plans; assure that consideration is given to 
        those State, local, and tribal plans that are germane 
        in the development of land use plans for public lands; 
        assist in resolving, to the extent practical, 
        inconsistencies between Federal and non-Federal 
        Governmental plans, and shall provide for meaningful 
        public involvement of State and local government 
        officials, both elected and appointed, in the 
        development of land use programs, land use regulations, 
        and land use decisions for public lands, including 
        early public notice of proposed decisions which may 
        have a significant impact on non-Federal lands. Such 
        officials in each State are authorized to furnish 
        advice to the Secretary with respect to the development 
        and revision of land use plans, land use guidelines, 
        land use rules, and land use regulations for the public 
        lands within such State and with respect to such other 
        land use matters as may be referred to them by him. 
        Land use plans of the Secretary under this section 
        shall be consistent with State and local plans to the 
        maximum extent he finds consistent with Federal law and 
        the purposes of this Act.
  (d) Any classification of public lands or any land use plan 
in effect on the date of enactment of this Act is subject to 
review in the land use planning process conducted under this 
section, and all public lands, regardless of classification, 
are subject to inclusion in any land use plan developed 
pursuant to this section. The Secretary may modify or terminate 
any such classification consistent with such land use plans.
  (e) The Secretary may issue management decisions to implement 
land use plans developed or revised under this section in 
accordance with the following:
          (1) Such decisions, including but not limited to 
        exclusions (that is, total elimination) of one or more 
        of the principal or major uses made by a management 
        decision shall remain subject to reconsideration, 
        modification, and termination through revision by the 
        Secretary or his delegate, under the provisions of this 
        section, of the land use plan involved.
          (2) Any management decision or action pursuant to a 
        management decision that excludes (that is, totally 
        eliminates) one or more of the principal or major uses 
        for two or more years with respect to a tract of land 
        of one hundred thousand acres or more shall be reported 
        by the Secretary to the House of Representatives and 
        the Senate. If within ninety days from the giving of 
        such notice (exclusive of days on which either House 
        has adjourned for more than three consecutive days), 
        the Congress adopts a concurrent resolution of 
        nonapproval of the management decision or action, then 
        the management decision or action shall be promptly 
        terminated by the Secretary. If the committee to which 
        a resolution has been referred during the said ninety 
        day period, has not reported it at the end of thirty 
        calendar days after its referral, it shall be in order 
        to either discharge the committee from further 
        consideration of such resolution or to discharge the 
        committee from consideration of any other resolution 
        with respect to the management decision or action. A 
        motion to discharge may be made only by an individual 
        favoring the resolution, shall be highly privileged 
        (except that it may not be made after the committee has 
        reported such a resolution), and debate thereon shall 
        be limited to not more than one hour, to be divided 
        equally between those favoring and those opposing the 
        resolution. An amendment to the motion shall not be in 
        order, and it shall not be in order to move to 
        reconsider the vote by which the motion was agreed to 
        or disagreed to. If the motion to discharge is agreed 
        to or disagreed to, the motion may not be made with 
        respect to any other resolution with respect to the 
        same management decision or action. When the committee 
        has reprinted, or has been discharged from further 
        consideration of a resolution, it shall at any time 
        thereafter be in order (even though a previous motion 
        to the same effect has been disagreed to) to move to 
        proceed to the consideration of the resolution. The 
        motion shall be highly privileged and shall not be 
        debatable. An amendment to the motion shall not be in 
        order, and it shall not be in order to move to 
        reconsider the vote by which the motion was agreed to 
        or disagreed to.
          (3) Withdrawals made pursuant to section 204 of this 
        Act may be used in carrying out management decisions, 
        but public lands shall be removed from or restored to 
        the operation of the Mining Law of 1872, as amended 
        (R.S. 2318-2352; 30 U.S.C. 21 et. seq.) or transferred 
        to another department, bureau, or agency only by 
        withdrawal action pursuant to section 204 or other 
        action pursuant to applicable law: Provided, That 
        nothing in this section shall prevent a wholly owned 
        Government corporation from acquiring and holding 
        rights as a citizen under the Mining Law of 1872.
  (f) The Secretary shall allow an opportunity for public 
involvement and by regulation shall establish procedures, 
including public hearings where appropriate, to give Federal, 
State, and local governments and the public, adequate notice 
and opportunity to comment upon and participate in the 
formulation of plans and programs relating to the management of 
the public lands.
  (g) Tribal Wildlife Corridors.--On the establishment of a 
Tribal Wildlife Corridor under section 3(a) of the Tribal 
Wildlife Corridors Act of 2019, the Secretary shall conduct a 
meaningful consultation with the Indian tribe that administers 
the Tribal Wildlife Corridor to determine whether, through the 
revision of one or more existing land use plans, the Tribal 
Wildlife Corridor can--
          (1) be expanded into public lands; or
          (2) otherwise benefit connectivity (as defined in 
        section 2 of that Act) between public lands and the 
        Tribal Wildlife Corridor.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

    This bill authorizes Indian tribes to nominate Tribal 
Wildlife Corridors on Indian lands.
    Republican concerns with the bill include the rationale for 
establishing a new layer of federal bureaucracy for 
classification of tribal lands at a time when the Department of 
the Interior's existing land management agencies are already 
straining under the weight of a multi-billion dollar deferred 
maintenance backlog, and resources extended to tribal lands are 
already severely limited as a result.
    Furthermore, the Trump Administration is already working to 
improve coordination between federal agencies and affected 
States and tribes in the West that have concerns with wildlife 
migration corridors. In November 2018, then-Interior Secretary 
Zinke signed Secretarial Order 3362, which explicitly aims at 
identifying and restoring winter range and migration corridors 
for big game and other wildlife by greater coordination with 
States, tribes, private landowners, and other relevant 
    This legislation will encourage federal agencies to 
prioritize conservation projects above other lawful land uses 
through costly grant programs funded by taxpayer dollars.
    Finally, this bill includes new additional environmental 
reviews of the potential impacts from energy, water, 
transportation, transmission and other development projects on 
newly established tribal wildlife corridors. These could 
further impose undue regulation on other forms of revenue 
streams tribes could consider exploring for future development.
    For these many reasons, many Republicans oppose this 

                                   Rob Bishop.
                                   Louie Gohmert.
                                   Tom McClintock.