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116th Congress    }                                   {        Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session       }                                   {        116-670

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



 
                     INDIAN BUFFALO MANAGEMENT ACT

                                _______
                                

 December 18, 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 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 5153]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 5153) to assist Tribal governments in the 
management of buffalo and buffalo habitat and for the 
reestablishment of buffalo on Indian lands, having considered 
the same, reports favorably thereon with an amendment and 
recommends that the bill as amended do pass.
    The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Indian Buffalo Management Act''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS; PURPOSES.

  (a) Findings.--Congress finds that--
          (1) buffalo sustained a majority of Indian Tribes in North 
        America for many centuries, before buffalo were nearly 
        exterminated by non-Indian hunters in the mid-1800s;
          (2) the historical, cultural, and spiritual connection 
        between buffalo and Indian Tribes has not diminished over time;
          (3) Indian Tribes have long desired the reestablishment of 
        buffalo throughout Indian country for cultural, spiritual, and 
        subsistence purposes; and
          (4) the successful restoration of buffalo allows an Indian 
        Tribe to benefit from--
                  (A) the reintroduction of buffalo into the diets of 
                the members of the Indian Tribe;
                  (B) the rekindling of the spiritual and cultural 
                relationship between buffalo and the Indian Tribe; and
                  (C) the use of buffalo for economic development, in 
                the case of an Indian Tribe that chooses to use buffalo 
                for economic development.
  (b) Purposes.--The purposes of this Act are--
          (1) to fulfill the government-to-government relationship 
        between Tribal governments and the United States in the 
        management of buffalo and buffalo habitat;
          (2) to promote and develop the capacity of Indian Tribes and 
        Tribal organizations to manage buffalo and buffalo habitat;
          (3) to protect, conserve, and enhance Indian buffalo, which 
        are important to the subsistence, culture, and economic 
        development of many Indian Tribes;
          (4) to promote the development and use of buffalo and buffalo 
        habitat for the maximum practicable benefit of Indian Tribes 
        and Tribal organizations, through management of buffalo and 
        buffalo habitats in accordance with integrated resource 
        management plans developed by Indian Tribes and Tribal 
        organizations;
          (5) to develop buffalo herds and increase production of 
        buffalo in order to meet Tribal subsistence, health, cultural, 
        and economic development needs; and
          (6) to promote the inclusion of Indian Tribes and Tribal 
        organizations in Department, local, regional, national, or 
        international--
                  (A) decision-making processes; or
                  (B) forums.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

  In this Act:
          (1) Buffalo.--The term ``buffalo'' means an animal of the 
        subspecies Bison bison bison.
          (2) Buffalo habitat.--The term ``buffalo habitat'' means 
        Indian land, as defined in paragraph (4) of this section, that 
        is managed for buffalo.
          (3) Department.--The term ``Department'' means the Department 
        of the Interior.
          (4) Indian land.--The term ``Indian land'' has the meaning 
        given the term in paragraph (2) of section 2601 of the Energy 
        Policy Act of 1992 (25 U.S.C. 3501), except that, in that 
        paragraph, the term ``Indian reservation'' shall be considered 
        to have the meaning given the term ``Indian reservation'' in 
        paragraph (3) of that section, without regard to the date 
        specified in paragraph (3) of that section.
          (5) Indian tribe.--The term ``Indian Tribe'' has the meaning 
        given the term (without regard to capitalization) in section 4 
        of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act 
        (25 U.S.C. 5304).
          (6) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        the Interior.
          (7) Tribal organization.--The term ``Tribal organization'' 
        means any legally established organization of Indians which is 
        chartered under section 17 of the Act of June 18, 1934 
        (commonly known as the ``Indian Reorganization Act'') (25 
        U.S.C. 5124), by the recognized governing body of any Indian 
        Tribe or Tribes, and with demonstrable experience in the 
        restoration of buffalo and buffalo habitat on Indian land.

SEC. 4. BUFFALO RESOURCE MANAGEMENT.

  (a) Program Established.--The Secretary shall establish a permanent 
program within the Department of the Interior for the purpose of--
          (1) promoting and developing the capacity of Indian Tribes 
        and Tribal organizations to manage buffalo and buffalo habitat;
          (2) promoting the ability of Indian Tribes and Tribal 
        organizations to protect, conserve, and enhance populations of 
        buffalo that are owned by Indian Tribes or Tribal 
        organizations;
          (3) promoting the development and use of buffalo and buffalo 
        habitat for the maximum practicable benefit of Indian Tribes 
        and Tribal organizations; and
          (4) promoting the inclusion of Indian Tribes and Tribal 
        organizations in Department, international, national, regional, 
        and local decision making and forums regarding buffalo and 
        buffalo habitat.
  (b) Contracts and Grants Authorized.--
          (1) In general.--The Secretary shall enter into contracts and 
        cooperative agreements with, and award grants to, Indian Tribes 
        and Tribal organizations to enable the respective Indian Tribe 
        or Tribal organization to--
                  (A) plan, conduct, or implement a buffalo restoration 
                or management program;
                  (B) plan and execute commercial activities related to 
                buffalo or buffalo products; or
                  (C) carry out other activities related to buffalo 
                restoration and management.
          (2) No diminishment of laws and regulations.--Nothing in this 
        subsection shall be interpreted to diminish any Federal or 
        State law or regulation of diseased buffalo or buffalo that 
        escape from Indian land.
  (c) Technical Assistance.--The Secretary shall provide technical 
assistance to an Indian Tribe or Tribal organization that enters into a 
contract or cooperative agreement or receives a grant under this 
section to assist that Indian Tribe or Tribal organization in--
          (1) carrying out the activities of a buffalo or buffalo 
        habitat restoration or management program; and
          (2) implementing the activities described in subparagraphs 
        (A) through (C) of subsection (b)(1).

SEC. 5. CONSULTATION; COORDINATION.

  (a) Consultation.--Not later than 1 year after the date of the 
enactment of this Act, and on an ongoing basis thereafter, the 
Secretary shall consult with Indian Tribes and Tribal organizations on 
initiatives of the Department that affect buffalo or buffalo habitat, 
including efforts of the Department to contain or eradicate diseased 
buffalo.
  (b) Coordination.--The Secretary shall develop a policy relating to 
buffalo and buffalo habitat management activities on Indian land, in 
accordance with--
          (1) the goals and objectives set forth in buffalo management 
        programs approved by Indian Tribes; and
          (2) Tribal laws and ordinances.

SEC. 6. PROTECTION OF INFORMATION.

  Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary shall not 
disclose or cause to be disclosed any information provided to the 
Secretary by an Indian Tribe or Tribal organization that is identified 
by the Indian Tribe or Tribal organization as culturally sensitive, 
proprietary, or otherwise confidential.

SEC. 7. BUFFALO FROM FEDERAL LAND.

  (a) In General.--The Secretary may enter into an agreement with an 
Indian Tribe or Tribal organization to dispose of surplus buffalo on 
Federal land administered by the Department applicable, by transporting 
such buffalo onto Indian land.
  (b) Application.--An Indian Tribe or Tribal organization may submit 
to the Secretary an application to receive buffalo described in 
subsection (a) at such time, in such manner, and containing such 
information as the Secretary may require.
  (c) Waiver of Charges.--The Secretary may waive any charges for the 
buffalo described in subsection (a), including any deposit or payment 
for services as described in section 10.2 of title 36, Code of Federal 
Regulation, or any successor regulation.

SEC. 8. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  There is authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary for grants to 
implement this Act, $14,000,000 for the first fiscal year beginning 
after the date of the enactment of this Act and for each fiscal year 
thereafter.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 5153 is to assist tribal governments in 
the management of buffalo and buffalo habitat and for the 
reestablishment of buffalo on Indian lands.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    Over the past few decades, tribal nations have actively 
worked toward the rehabilitation of the American buffalo 
population on their own lands by participating in inter-tribal 
alliances such as the InterTribal Buffalo Council (ITBC).\1\ 
H.R. 5153 builds upon this existing initiative by establishing 
a permanent program within the Department of the Interior to 
help tribal nations develop and maintain buffalo herds on their 
own lands. Through this program, the Interior will award grants 
to and enter into contractual agreements with any tribal nation 
that plans to implement buffalo restoration programs and other 
commercial activities related to buffalo conservation. In 
addition, the program will enable the transportation of surplus 
buffalo from federal lands to tribal lands.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\ITBC is classified as a federally chartered Indian Organization 
under Section 17 of the Indian Reorganization Act and maintains a 
membership of 61 different tribal nations.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 5153 was introduced on November 18, 2019, by 
Representative Don Young (R-AK). The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Natural Resources, and within the Committee 
to the Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United 
States. On February 5, 2020, the Subcommittee held a hearing on 
the bill. On September 30, 2020, the Natural Resources 
Committee met to consider the bill. The Subcommittee was 
discharged by unanimous consent. Representative Young offered 
an amendment designated Young #1. The amendment was agreed to 
by unanimous consent. No additional amendments were offered, 
and the bill, as amended, was adopted and ordered favorably 
reported to the House of Representatives by unanimous consent.

                                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. 5153: legislative hearing by the Subcommittee for 
Indigenous Peoples of the United States held on February 5, 
2020.

            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) of rule XIII 
of the Rules of the House of Representatives and section 308(a) 
of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 and with respect to 
requirements 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 requested 
but not received a cost estimate for this bill from the 
Director of Congressional Budget Office. The Committee adopts 
as its own cost estimate the forthcoming cost estimate of the 
Director of the Congressional Budget Office, should such cost 
estimate be made available before House passage of the bill.
    The Committee has requested but not received from the 
Director of the Congressional Budget Office a statement as to 
whether this bill contains any new budget authority, spending 
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in 
revenues or tax expenditures.
    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 assist tribal governments in the 
management of buffalo and buffalo habitat and for the 
reestablishment of buffalo on Indian lands.

                           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

    An estimate of Federal mandates prepared by the Director of 
the Congressional Budget Office pursuant to section 423 of the 
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act was not made available to the 
Committee in time for the filing of this report. The Chair of 
the Committee shall cause such estimate to be printed in the 
Congressional Record upon its receipt by the Committee.

                           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 grants authorized by this 
bill are 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: Partners for Fish and Wildlife (CFDA No. 15.631) 
and Tribal Wildlife Grants (CFDA No. 15.639).

                  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

    If enacted, this bill would make no changes to existing 
law.

        SUPPLEMENTAL, MINORITY, ADDITIONAL, OR DISSENTING VIEWS

    None.

                                  [all]