Clerk session vote number: 283
Description: A bill making appropriations for the Department of the Interior and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1998, and for other purposes.
Bill summary: TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Title I: Department of the Interior
Title II: Related Agencies
Title III: General Provisions
Title IV: Environmental Improvement and Restoration Fund
Title V: Priority Land Acquisitions, Land Exchanges, and
Title VI: Forest Resources Conservation and Shortage Relief
Title VII: Miccosukee Settlement
Department of the Interior and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1998 - Makes appropriations for the Department of the Interior and related agencies for FY
Title I: Department of the Interior
- Makes appropriations for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for: (1) land and resource management; (2) fire management; (3) remedial action of hazardous waste substances; (4) construction; (5) payments in lieu of taxes to local governments; (6) land acquisition; (7) Oregon and California grant lands; (8) range improvements; (9) service charges, deposits, and forfeitures with respect to public lands; (10) miscellaneous trust funds; and (11) BLM administrative and enforcement expenses.
Appropriates funds for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for: (1) resource management; (2) construction; (3) natural resource damage assessment activities; (4) land acquisition; (5) the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund; (6) the National Wildlife Refuge Fund; (7) expenses related to carrying out the African Elephant Conservation Act; (8) expenses related to the North American Wetlands Conservation Act; (9) the Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Fund; (10) the Wildlife Conservation and Appreciation Fund; and (11) U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service administrative and enforcement expenses.
Makes appropriations for the National Park Service (NPS) for: (1) the National Park System; (2) national recreation and preservation activities; (3) expenses related to carrying out the Historic Preservation Act of 1966; (4) construction; and (5) land acquisition and State assistance from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
Rescinds specified contract authority to obligate funds from the Land and Water Conservation Fund for FY 1998.
Prohibits the use of funds by the NPS for activities taken in direct response to the United Nations Biodiversity Convention.
Makes appropriations for: (1) the U.S. Geological Survey for surveys, investigations, and research; (2) the Minerals Management Service for royalty and offshore minerals management and oil spill research; (3) the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement for enforcement and the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund; (4) the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) for operation of Indian programs, construction, miscellaneous payments to Indians, and Indian guaranteed loans; (5) assistance to U.S. territories and for carrying out the Compacts of Free Association with respect to Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, and Palau; (6) salaries and expenses of departmental management, the Offices of the Solicitor and the Inspector General, and the National Indian Gaming Commission; and (7) trust programs for Indians.
Sets forth prohibitions on the use of specified funds.
(Sec. 101) Sets forth provisions regarding the use of funds under this title for emergency reconstruction, replacement, or repair of facilities or equipment.
(Sec. 108) Prohibits the use of such funds for specified offshore leasing and related activities.
(Sec. 113) Sets forth provisions regarding severance and health benefits for employees of BLM's helium operations.
Authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to provide for training to assist such employees in the transition to other jobs.
(Sec. 114) Prohibits the use of funds in this or previous appropriations Acts to establish a new regional office in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service without the advance approval of the Appropriations Committees.
(Sec. 115) Requires the Secretary of the Interior to convey the Bowden National Fish Hatchery to the State of West Virginia for use as part of the State's fish culture program.
(Sec. 117) Amends Federal law to increase the limit on annual expenditures for projects on Kili or Ejit as part of rehabilitation and resettlement of Bikini Atoll. Provides for annual adjustments of such amount based on fluctuations in the Consumer Price Index.
(Sec. 118) Provides that any funds made available in any Act for tribal priority allocations (TPA) in excess of the funds expended for TPA in FY 1997 shall only be available for distribution to each tribe to the extent necessary to provide a tribe the minimum level of funding recommended by the Joint-Tribal-BIA-DOI Task Force on Reorganization of the Bureau of Indian Affairs Report of 1994 (and to not exceed $160,000 per tribe). States that remaining funds will be allocated according to recommendations of a task force comprised of two designated Federal officials and two tribal representatives from each BIA area.
Requires the Secretary, if the task force cannot agree on a distribution by January 31, 1998, to distribute remaining funds based on recommendations of a majority of Task Force members by February 28, 1998.
(Sec. 120) Vests in the United States, 90 days after this section's enactment date, all patented and valid unpatented mining claims in the Kantishna Mining District within Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska, whose owners consent to such action within such 90-day period. Provides for just compensation to be paid to the owners of such claims.
(Sec. 121) Extends to October 1, 1998, the deadline by which specified Alaska Native corporations may commence litigation to challenge Department of the Interior determinations that they will not receive conveyances of lands described in a specified 1976 Deficiency Agreement. Authorizes the introduction of any relevant evidence bearing on the interpretation of the Agreement at the court trial if such litigation is commenced.
(Sec. 123) Amends the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act to require fees to be paid to the National Indian Gaming Commission by class III gaming operations. Revises the rate of fees to be paid by class II and III gaming operations. Caps the total amount of fees imposed during any fiscal year at $8 million (currently, $1.5 million). Makes such requirements inapplicable to self-regulated tribes such as the Mississippi Band of Choctaw.
Extends the authorization of appropriations for the Commission.
(Sec. 124) Amends Federal law to authorize the legislature of the Government of the Virgin Islands to issue notes in anticipation of the collection of taxes and revenues for the current fiscal year. Bars extensions of notes and prohibits issuance of additional notes until all notes issued during a preceding year have been paid.
(Sec. 125) Requires the Secretary to ensure that the lands comprising the Huron Cemetery in Kansas City, Kansas, are used only for religious and cultural uses compatible with the use of such lands as a cemetery and as a burial ground.
(Sec. 127) Requires the NPS to initiate a competitive process to allow one entry per day for a passenger ferry into Bartlett Cove in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve from Juneau, Alaska, for the sole purpose of accessing park or other authorized visitor services or facilities at, or originating from, the public dock area at the Cove.
(Sec. 128) Amends Federal law with respect to exploration of the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska to authorize gas and oil lessees, for conservation purposes, to unite with others in collectively adopting and operating under a unit agreement for any oil or gas pool, field, or like area whenever the Secretary of the Interior deems necessary or in the public interest.
Authorizes the Secretary, in order to encourage the greatest ultimate recovery of oil or gas or in the interest of conservation, to waive, suspend, or reduce the rental or minimum royalty, or reduce the royalty on an entire leasehold, whenever the leases cannot be successfully operated under the terms provided.
(Sec. 129) Bars the Secretary, during FY 1998, from expending funds made available under this Act to review or approve initial tribal-State compacts for class III gaming entered into on or after this Act's enactment date.
(Sec. 130) Expresses the sense of the Senate that the Department of Justice should vigorously enforce the provisions of the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act requiring an approved tribal-State gaming compact prior to the initiation of class III gaming on Indian lands.
(Sec. 131) Prohibits the expenditure of funds provided in any Act for the promulgation of a proposed or final rule to amend or replace the National Indian Gaming Commission's definition regulations.
(Sec. 133) Directs the Secretary, acting through the BLM Director, to convey certain land to Lander County, Nevada.
(Sec. 134) Authorizes the city of Las Vegas, Nevada, to submit to the Secretary, acting through the BLM Director, an offer to purchase specified Federal properties on behalf of adjacent real property owners adversely affected by reliance on erroneous private land surveys.
Directs the Secretary to convey such properties, subject to valid existing rights, to the city upon payment by the city of the fair market value of the properties as of December 1, 1982, and on the condition that the city convey the properties to such adversely affected landowners.
(Sec. 135) Directs the Secretary to accept full title to specified land located in Prince Georges County, Maryland, and, in exchange, to convey specified land in Oxon Cove Park in the District of Columbia to the Corrections Corporation of America.
Bars the acquisition of such lands if contaminated with hazardous substances. Absolves the United States of liability for hazardous wastes or substances placed on lands covered by this section after their transfer to any party. Requires the Corporation to indemnify the United States for liabilities arising under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (Superfund) and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.
(Sec. 136) Requires the NPS to begin negotiations with the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, School of Mineral Engineering to determine compensation for University facilities, equipment, and interests that were destroyed by the Federal Government at the Stampede Mine Site in Denali National Park and Preserve.
Title II: Related Agencies
- Makes appropriations for the Department of Agriculture for the Forest Service for: (1) forest and rangeland research; (2) forestry activities; (3) the National Forest System; (4) fire management; (5) construction and reconstruction; (6) land acquisition; (7) range rehabilitation and improvement; (8) forest and rangeland research; (9) restoration of the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie; and (10) administrative expenses.
Requires funds appropriated by this Act to implement the Revised Tongass National Forest Land Management Plan to be spent and obligated at the Forest Supervisor and Ranger District levels, subject to specified conditions.
Rescinds a specified amount of funds made available to the Department of Energy in FY 1997 or prior fiscal years for clean coal technology projects.
Makes appropriations for the Department of Energy for: (1) fossil energy research and development activities; (2) naval petroleum and oil shale reserve activities; (3) energy conservation; (4) economic regulation activities of the Office of Hearings and Appeals; (5) the Strategic Petroleum Reserve; and (6) the Energy Information Administration.
Makes appropriations for the Department of Health and Human Services for the Indian Health Service, including Indian health facilities.
Makes appropriations for : (1) the Office of Navajo and Hopi Indian Relocation; (2) the Institute of American Indian and Alaska Native Culture and Arts Development; (3) the Smithsonian Institution; (4) the National Zoological Park; (5) construction; (6) the National Gallery of Art; (7) the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; (8) carrying out the Woodrow Wilson Memorial Act of 1968; (9) the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA); (10) the National Endowment for the Humanities; (11) the Institute of Museum and Library Services; (12) the Commission of Fine Arts; (13) the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation; (14) the National Capital Planning Commission; and (15) the Holocaust Memorial Council.
Sets forth provisions regarding uses of, and limitations on, funds under this title.
Title III: General Provisions
- Sets forth limitations on the use of funds under this Act, including Buy American requirements. Prohibits Federal contracts with persons found to have falsely labeled products with a "Made in America" inscription.
(Sec. 308) Prohibits the use of funds under this Act for: (1) planning or offering timber from giant sequoias on BLM or Forest System lands for sale in a manner different than such sales were conducted in FY 1995; (2) entering into a concession contract (by the NPS) which provides for the removal of the underground lunchroom at Carlsbad Caverns National Park; (3) the AmeriCorps program unless the relevant agencies of the Departments of the Interior and Agriculture follow appropriate reprogramming guidelines; (4) demolishing the bridge between Jersey City, New Jersey, and Ellis Island or preventing pedestrian use of such bridge; (5) accepting or processing applications for a patent for mining or mill site claims located under the general mining laws, unless the Secretary of the Interior takes specified actions; (6) acquiring lands in specified Ohio counties for the Wayne National Forest; and (7) funding activities of the western director and special assistant to the Secretary of Agriculture in an amount exceeding FY 1997 funding for such activities.
(Sec. 316) Bars the use of funds made available to the Departments of the Interior or Agriculture in any Act to issue or implement, prior to December 1, 1998, final regulations or policies pursuant to the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) to assert jurisdiction or management over navigable waters transferred to the State of Alaska pursuant to the Submerged Lands Act of 1953 or the Alaska Statehood Act of 1959.
Amends ANILCA to revise provisions regarding State management of subsistence takings of fish and wildlife on public lands. States that the preference granted is for a reasonable opportunity to take fish and wildlife, consistent with customary and traditional uses, for subsistence purposes.
Bars the Secretary of the Interior from implementing provisions related to establishing subsistence resource regions, local advisory committees, and regional advisory councils upon State assumption of management duties unless a court determines that State law is inconsistent with definitions, preferences, and participation requirements of subsistence provisions.
Permits State agency actions to be invalidated by the court only if they are arbitrary, capricious, or otherwise not in accordance with the law.
Requires the Secretary, before December 1, 1998, to certify if laws consistent with such definition, preference, and participation provisions have been adopted in Alaska.
(Sec. 319) Authorizes the Secretaries of Agriculture and the Interior to limit competition for watershed restoration project contracts as part of the President's Forest Plan for the Pacific Northwest to individuals and entities in timber-dependent areas in Washington, Oregon, and northern California that have been affected by reduced timber harvesting on Federal lands.
(Sec. 320) Revises the formula for the distribution of recreational use fees.
(Sec. 323) Requires the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture, prior to the completion of any decision document or the making of any decision related to the final Environmental Impact Statements associated with the Interior Columbia Basin Ecosystem Project, to report to the Appropriations Committees on future land and resource management planning, estimated time frames and costs of decisions, estimated production of goods and services from Federal lands, and economic and social conditions of, and environmental impacts on, communities within the Project area.
(Sec. 325) Authorizes specified Alaska Native regional health entities to form a consortium to provide all statewide health services provided by the Indian Health Service through the Alaska Native Medical Center and the Alaska Area Office. Sets forth further authorities with respect to health care services provided by the Cook Inlet Region, Inc.
(Sec. 327) Prohibits the use of funds made available by this Act to require any person to vacate real property where a term is expiring under a use and occupancy reservation in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan, until the NPS indicates to the appropriate congressional committees and the reservation holders that it has sufficient funds to remove the residence on such property within 90 days of the residence being vacated. Provides for: (1) at least 90 days' notice to holders of expired reservations to allow them to leave the residence; and (2) fair market value rental rates, in addition to other specified charges, while occupancy continues beyond an expired reservation.
(Sec. 328) Bars the use of funds made available in any Act providing appropriations for the Department of the Interior, the Forest Service, or the Smithsonian Institution for the submission of nominations for the designation of Biosphere Reserves pursuant to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization's Man and Biosphere Program. Repeals such prohibition upon enactment of legislation specifically authorizing U.S. participation in such program.
Bars the use of funds made available by this or any other Act to designate any portion of Canaveral National Seashore in Brevard County, Florida, as a clothing-optional area or an area in which public nudity is permitted if such designation would be contrary to county ordinance.
(Sec. 329) Requires the Chairperson of the NEA to: (1) award grants only for literature, National Heritage, or American Jazz Masters fellowships; and (2) establish procedures to ensure that no funding provided through a grant, except one made to a State or local arts agency or regional group, may be used to make a grant to any other individual or organization to conduct activities independent of the grant recipient.
Prohibits NEA grants from being used for seasonal support to a group unless the application is specific to the contents of the season.
(Sec. 331) Authorizes the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture, in FY 1998 through 2002, to make reciprocal delegations of their authorities and responsibilities in support of joint pilot programs to promote customer service and efficiency in the management of public lands and national forests.
(Sec. 334) Authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture, in FY 1998, to use appropriations for the Forest Service to enter into watershed restoration and enhancement agreements.
(Sec. 335) Provides for the termination of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial Commission.
(Sec. 339) Prohibits the expenditure of funds provided in any Act to develop a rulemaking proposal to amend or replace BLM regulations for surface mining or to prepare a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) on such proposal until the Secretary of the Interior certifies to specified congressional committees that the Department of the Interior has consulted with the Governor of each State that contains public lands open to location under the general mining laws. Bars publication of proposed regulations prior to November 15, 1998.
(Sec. 340) Authorizes and directs the Secretary of Agriculture to negotiate with Skamania County, Washington, for the exchange of lands or interests in lands constituting the Wind River Nursery Site in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.
Authorizes and directs the County, in return for the Nursery Site properties, to negotiate the conveyance of specified high biodiversity, special management lands within the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area with the Forest Service.
Sets forth additional requirements with respect to such land exchange.
(Sec. 342) Prohibits the expenditure of funds under any Act for the introduction of the grizzly bear population in the Selway-Bitteroot area of Idaho and adjacent Montana or for consultations under the Endangered Species Act for Federal actions affecting such population. Permits funds to be used for receiving public comment on the draft EIS of July 1997, issuing a Record of Decision, and for conducting a habitat-based population viability analysis.
(Sec. 343) Requires the Secretary of Agriculture to phase in, over a three-year period, the portion of the fee increase for recreation residence special use permit holders which exceeds 100 percent of the previous year's fee.
(Sec. 344) Expresses the sense of the Senate with respect to: (1) preserving Civil War battlefields; and (2) Federal funding for the arts.
(Sec. 346) Requires the Chairperson of the NEA to establish a grant category for programs that are of national impact or availability or are able to tour several States. Prohibits the Chairperson from making grants exceeding 15 percent, in the aggregate, of NEA funds appropriated by this Act, to any single State, excluding grants made under this section.
Revises the composition of the National Council on the Arts to include Members of Congress.
(Sec. 347) Sets forth requirements regarding the sale and the availability for processing of western red cedar timber.
(Sec. 348) Prohibits the use of funds in this Act for planning, design, or construction of improvements to Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House without the advance approval of the Appropriations Committees.
(Sec. 349) Bars the use of funds made available under any Act for executing adjustments to annual operating plans, allotment management plans, or terms of existing grazing permits on national forests in Arizona and New Mexico deemed necessary to achieve compliance with 1996 amendments to applicable forest plans until the earlier of March 1, 1998, or such time as the Forest Service publishes a schedule for implementing proposed changes.
Title IV: Environmental Improvement and Restoration Fund
- Provides for the deposit of one-half of the amounts awarded by the Supreme Court to the United States in United States of America v. State of Alaska into a Treasury fund to be known as the Environmental Improvement and Restoration Fund.
Makes the Fund available for certain deferred maintenance and modernization projects of the NPS, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the BLM, and the Forest Service and for marine research activities in the North Pacific, Bering Sea, and Arctic Ocean by the Secretary of Commerce.
Title V: Priority Land Acquisitions, Land Exchanges, and Maintenance
- Makes appropriations for priority land acquisitions, land exchange agreements, other activities consistent with the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965, and critical maintenance by the BLM, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, NPS, and Forest Service, to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund and to remain available through FY 2001.
Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.
Sets forth requirements for the acquisition of the Headwaters Forest in Humboldt County, California, by the Secretary of the Interior and certain interests in Montana by the Secretary of Agriculture to provide for the preservation of Yellowstone National Park.
Title VI: Forest Resources Conservation and Shortage Relief
- Forest Resources Conservation and Shortage Relief Act of 1997 - Amends the Forest Resources Conservation and Shortage Relief Act of 1990 (the Act) to except purchases of unprocessed timber from Federal lands west of the 119th meridian in the State of Washington from specified limitations on substitutions of unprocessed Federal timber for unprocessed timber from private lands if: (1) the private lands are owned by the purchaser; or (2) the purchaser has the exclusive right to harvest timber from the private lands during a period of more than seven years and may exercise that right at any time.
Makes existing provisions regarding applications for approval of sourcing areas applicable to sourcing areas for processing facilities located outside the northwestern private timber open market area (defined as the State of Washington).
Requires the Secretary concerned, in making a determination to approve an application for sourcing areas for timber manufacturing facilities in Idaho, to consider the private timber export and the private and Federal timber sourcing patterns for the applicant's facilities and other facilities in the same vicinity and the relative similarity of private and Federal timber sourcing patterns. Provides that private timber sourcing patterns shall not be a factor in such determinations in States other than Idaho.
Prohibits the Secretary, in deciding whether to approve an application, from: (1) considering land located in Washington; or (2) conditioning approval on the inclusion of such land in the applicant's sourcing area, except to the extent requested by the applicant.
Establishes boundaries and requirements for sourcing areas for processing facilities in Washington. Permits relinquishment of sourcing areas at any time.
Makes unprocessed timber from private lands within a relinquished sourcing area immediately exportable after unprocessed timber from Federal land from within such area is no longer in the possession of the former area holder.
Revises restrictions on the export of unprocessed timber from State and public land with respect to States with annual sales of more than 400 million board feet to prohibit exports originating from public lands as of this Act's enactment date (thus, changing current effective dates).
(Sec. 603) Provides for reduction or suspension of penalties with respect to specified violations of the Act, based on mitigating factors.
Prohibits debarment of any person from bidding for or entering into a contract for the purchase of unprocessed timber from Federal lands unless the head of the appropriate Federal agency finds, on the record and after an opportunity for a hearing, that debarment is warranted. Permits the withholding of a contract award during a debarment proceeding.
(Sec. 604) Excludes timber processed into incidental volumes of grade three and four sawlogs from the definition of unprocessed timber under the Act.
(Sec. 605) Requires the Secretary concerned to issue regulations that impose marking requirements on unprocessed timber under certain conditions. Excludes certain logs or timber from such requirements based on size. Provides waivers from such requirements under certain conditions.
Title VII: Miccosukee Settlement
- Miccosukee Settlement Act of 1997 - Ratifies the August 1996 Settlement Agreement between the Florida Department of Transportation and the Miccosukee Tribe.
(Sec. 705) Directs the Secretary of the Interior, as trustee for the Miccosukee Tribe, to assist in the fulfillment of the settlement agreement concerning the transfer of: (1) certain Miccosukee tribal land to the Florida Department of Transportation; and (2) certain Florida land to the United States to be received and accepted in trust for the use and benefit of the Miccosukee Tribe, as Miccosukee Indian Reservation lands.
(Sec. 706) Exempts payments or conveyances made to the Tribe under the agreement from Federal and State taxation.
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Bill titles: Making appropriations for the Department of the Interior and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1998, and for other purposes.; Forest Resources Conservation and Shortage Relief Act of 1997; Miccosukee Settlement Act of 1997
Links for more info on the vote: congress.gov