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EPW Committee Approves Water and Wildlife Legislation
Committee also approves GSA and Army Corps of Engineers Resolutions
July 13, 2011

Washington, DC - Today the Environment and Public Works Committee approved five pieces of legislation and several resolutions, including measures to promote the conservation of migratory birds and to reauthorize the National Estuary Program. The Committee also approved several General Services Administration (GSA) resolutions and an Army Corps of Engineers resolution.

The Committee also deferred action on S. 861, the Resources and Ecosystems Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act of 2011, which was introduced by Senators Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and David Vitter (R-LA). During the business meeting, Senator Vitter requested more time to work toward a consensus on the bill with the Gulf Coast states. Given the progress on the legislation, the Committee plans to move ahead with a markup in the next few weeks.

All of the bills passed by voice vote, and now go to the full Senate for consideration.

The legislation that was voted out of the EPW committee today is listed below:

• S. 1302, a bill to authorize the Administrator of General Services to convey a parcel of real property in Tracy, California, to the city of Tracy.

S. 1302 was introduced by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, and is cosponsored by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). The legislation will authorize the Administrator of GSA to convey without restriction a 150 acre parcel of undeveloped land in Tracy, CA at a cost not less than the appraised fair market value. The measure will allow the city to develop the land and create jobs. The city will be responsible for reimbursing the Administrator for any costs associated with conveyance. Representative Jerry McNerney (CA-11) introduced identical legislation in the House of Representatives.

• S. 538, a bill to amend the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act to reauthorize the Act

S. 538 was introduced by Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD). The Act reauthorizes a grants program to promote the conservation of migratory birds in the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.

• S. 899, the Nutria Eradication and Control Act of 2011

S. 899 was introduced by Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) and is cosponsored by Senators Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), and Kay Hagan (D-NC). This bill would reauthorize a nutria eradication program. S. 899 requires the Secretary of the Interior to continue a long-term nutria control or eradication program in Louisiana and Maryland and extend the program to new states, including Delaware, Virginia, North Carolina, Oregon and Washington.

• S. 1313, the Clean Estuaries Act of 2011

S. 1313 was introduced by Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), David Vitter (R-LA), Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Joe Lieberman (I-CT). This legislation amends the Clean Water Act to reauthorize the National Estuary Program. The bill revises the purpose of management conferences convened to guide voluntary estuary restoration efforts and expands requirements governing the comprehensive conservation and management plans prepared by each estuary program. It also improves the program's accountability by requiring regular evaluations to determine if the goals of improving water quality and habitat are being met.

• S. 846, a bill to designate the United States courthouse located at 80 Lafayette Street in Jefferson City, Missouri, as the Christopher S. Bond United States Courthouse.

S. 846 was introduced by Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) and is cosponsored by Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO). Senator Christopher "Kit" Bond was born in Missouri in 1939, and served as Governor of Missouri from 1973-1977 and 1980-1985. He was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1986 and served through 2010. He was a long time member of the Environment and Public Works Committee.

• Corps Study Resolution: Eastchester Creek, NY

The study would determine the feasibility of providing navigation improvements to support commercial movements of home heating fuel and other goods to this region of New York.

• GSA Resolutions

The committee approved 22 resolutions.

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