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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  July 7, 2015 11:00pm-1:01am EDT

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posal to open up the atlantic to offshore natural gas and oil exploration. i welcomed the proposals as one of many steps that must be taken to unlock our natural resources, create jobs and boost our economy. the problem is we now face bureaucratic hoops and an uphill rule make prague sess that could take the atlantic lease sale off the table. in fact, the secretary testified recently that she could not geancht the atlantic lease would stay in the plan once it's finalized. . there was one scheduled off the coast of virginia but later blocked by this administration. north carolina has the potential for great energy jobs and i won't let this opportunity slip through our fingers. my amendment is critical to provide certainty for north carolina and unleash jobs and lower energy prices. our economy is spluttering along and too many folks back home are struggling to find jobs.
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it as the potential to support more than 55,000 jobs in our state and contribute more than $53 billion in revenue. i urge my colleagues to support this amendment and at this time i would yield to the chairman. mr. calvert: i'm not going to oppose your amendment. i certainly appreciate what you're trying to accomplish and generally agree that this administration has placed way too many restrictions on drilling both on shore and offshore. these restrictions have delayed the permitting process slowed economic growth in your state and many other states around the union, various groups have used that to their advantage, so i agree that more certainly -- certainty is needed in the leasing and permitting process. what i'm afraid of is that this might lead to a precedent for preempting the department of interior's decision making authority under any president and may lead to other amendments and kind of opening pandora's
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box of members doing specific amendments that are off their particular states. but saying that, as we move this process forward, i'm not going to oppose the amendment, but i have some concerns we can talk about as we move the process along. we both want the same outcome, i just want to make sure that we make sure this works in an orderly fashion. with that, i yield back. >> i thank the gentleman for his comments. the chair: does the gentlelady from maine rise in opposition? ms. pingree: i do. this bill would ensure -- the amendment would undermine the bureau's fundamental mission to
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manage the development of offshore resources in an environmentally and economically responsible manner. the atlantic outer continental shell san francisco a frontier area and the decision to include sale 260 in the 2017-2022 five-year leasing schedule should be informed by sound science using the best available data. the bureau is required by law to consider the environmental impacts of leasing decisions and this includes a comprehensive, programmatic environmental impact statement which has not yet been completed for the atlantic outer continental shelf. in fact the most current data on resources in this area was collected in the 1970's and 1980's. that's really ancient by today's scientific standards. without the collection and analysis of new information input from state governor and other federal agencies, and consideration of critical
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economicage cease, the decision to include sale 260 in the 2017-2022 program is premature and runs counter to the thoughtful and deliberative process established by congress through the outer continental shelf lands act. this amendment would violate multiple environmental statutes, including nepa the marine mammal protection act, the endangered species act and the coastal zone management act. the amendment undermines environmental protect required by law and therefore i oppose the amendment. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlewoman reserves. the gentleman from next is recognized. -- from north carolina is recognized. >> thank you mr. chairman. the reason we need this is to ensure that north carolina gets a chance at jobs.
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it's been frustrating how hard it is to get the process to move forward. if you look at the proposed lease sale, the sale is allowed in the fourth year of the five-year period only one sale is allowed. an artificial buffer of 50 miles was inserted into the sale. mr. hudson: we're getting one sale late in the period with a five-year buffer when the old seismic shows that most of that oil and gas is 25 miles out. the question question got -- the yes we got from this administration, the fact that this process is moving forward is good news for north carolina and the other states in the atlantic coast but it's certainly not, in my opinion, an appropriate response to the potential we've got there. i agree with the gentlelady who said that seismic is old. it was done in the late 1970's, but this administration called for new seismic mapping and i'm looking forward to that because we do want to use good science.
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but we have been given one opportunity, pretty far out, in the fourth year of a five-year period, and i'm afraid we're going to lose that. if you look at history under this administration, there was a lease sale proposed in virginia and that was taken away. so i think to guarantee we get at least some shot at unlocking this potential off the coast of getting new american sources of energy into the pipeline, getting north carolinians to work in these energy jobs i think it's important we have this amendment. i urge my colleagues to support this. with that, mr. chairman, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields. the gentlewoman from maine is recognized. ms. pingree: thank you mr. chairman. i appreciate the gentleman from north carolina and his concerns about jobs for his home state but as a member of congress who also represented coastal state of maine, i know the deep concerns that people have about the potential dangers of offshore oil drilling and the
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possible dangers to fisheries, marine ma'amals and a variety of other things. the reason we have this process is critically important to our state so i continue to oppose this amendment and i yield back the balance of my time and i oppose the amendment. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from north carolina. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. ms. pingree: i request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from north carolina will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from north carolina seek recognition? mr. hudson: i have an amendment at the desk, mr. chairman, hudson 2. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment.
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the clerk: amendment number two offered by mr. hudson of north carolina. at the end of the bill insert the following. none of the funds made available by this act may be used by the environmental protection agency to implement, administration or enforce any residue from residential barbecues. the chair: the gentleman from north carolina and a member opposed will each control five minute. the chair recognizes the gentleman from north carolina. mr. hudson: i rise tonight to offer an amendment that would prohibit the e.p.a. from regulating particulate matter emissions from residential barbecues. the e.m.a. last year issued a grant to reduce fine particulate emissions from residential barbecue. the e.p.a. gos a lot of things wrong, especially with this study. barbecue is a term we southerners use for the best
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pork in north carolina. what they're proposing is reducing emissions from residential propane grills, so they want to stop you and i from grilling outside on our own property. propane is one of the most clean sources of energy out there. regulations that waste our time, money and resources are bad as it is. but they're trying to go as far as restricting our personal freedom. mr. chairman this grant was met with staunch opposition from conservatives and other outdoor enthusiasts like myself. if this isn't part of e.p.a.'s larger goal of regulating grill e-- emissions, it begs the question, why are they wasting our tax dollars on this mind-blowing study in the first place? we've seen their overreach time and time again from flawed water regulations to the it's a rouse clean power plans that's cap and trade by fiat, to their preposterous new proposals that
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would have major impacts on manufacturing. but now to study particulates from residential grilling. enough is enough. the chair: for what purpose does the gentlelady from maine seek recognition? ms. pingree: i claim time in opposition. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. pingree: i appreciate the concerns of the member from north carolina. i will give him credit, they have better barbecue than my home state, but we've got you beat on lobsters. but i think this argument is somewhat cynical and a little too suspicious of our government and perhaps republicans have gotten a little too far down this road. my understanding is this summer a conservative media outlet ran a sensationalized story about e.p.a.'s regulatory overreach. the story claimed e.p.a. has its eye on pollution from backyard barbecues. the problem with the story and
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this amendment is it's based on a false trems and -- premise and mischaracterization of important work. e.p.a. operates a grant program that encourages students around the nation to design solutions for a sustainable future. it's called people, prosperity, and the planet, student design competition for sustainability. its purpose is to foster innovation, not to create regulations. the e.p.a. awarded one of these design grants to a group of university of california students working to design a system to make barbecues burn cleaner and be better for the environment. the students received $15,000 from the e.p.a. for the idea. in addition the university has said the idea has potential for global application. mr. chairman, many developing nations, women hunch over traditional cook stoves for hours a day, breathing in toxic smoke. exposure to this household air pollution is responsible for low birth weights childhood pneumonia and more than four
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million premature deaths each year. the availability of cleaner cooking technologies could literally be lifesaving for many of these women and children. instead of attacking the e.p.a. for these innovative grants we should be applauding them. i reserve my time. the chair: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman is recognized. mr. hudson: thank you mr. chairman. i thank the gentlelady for her kind comments about north carolina barbecue and i do admit the lobster rolls in maine are good, maybe we could work out an exchange. i am guilty as charged i'm very cynical about the government. we're talking about a $15 million grant to study the emotions of a propane grill in your backyard. now, we all are concerned about toxic smoke in homes and living conditions of individuals, the example that have mentioned but we're talking about a propane
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gas grill in your backyard. the e.p.a. has no business regulating that. they spent $15 million of our tax money to form a study which is the first step in a rule making process. so what i want -- i just think this chamber needs to say loud and leer to the e.p.a. focus on the job that the gentlelady described, focus on the real issues and the mission of the e.p.a. and keep your hands off our grills and out of our back yards. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields. the gentlelady is recognized. ms. pingree: thank you mr. chairman. happy to have an exchange, north carolina barbecue, maine lobster, probably a fair exchange. and i want to clarify, it's $15,000, not $15 million the e.p.a. spent working on this innovation. i understand your concerns and appreciate the points that you brought up, i continue to oppose the amendment and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from north carolina. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it.
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the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. fitzpatrick of pennsylvania. at the end of the bill before the short title insert the follow, forest legacy program, section, for department of agriculture forest service state and private forestry, for the forest legacy program as authorized by section 1217 of title 12 of the food agriculture conservation and trade act of 1990. 16 united states code 2103-c, there is hereby appropriated in
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the amount otherwise provided for department of interior bureau of land management management of lands and resources, is reduced by $5,9 5,000. -- $5,985,000. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333, the gentleman from pennsylvania and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. fitzpatrick: i intend to offer and then withdraw this amendment which will make it easier for efforts under the forest program. during my time as a bucks county mission commissioner, i was proud to lead low lowe call efforts to advance forest conservation through commonsense conservation efforts. along with a fasktors -- task force for that purpose, our community was able to expend approximately $1 million for
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preservation of farmland, parkland and critical national areas, close to 15,000 acres in our one county preserved. now as a strang the gentlewoman is recognized va cat for land preservation in congress, i continue to be a supporter of vital preservation programs, including the national forest service program. my amendment would reallocate $5.9 million from bureau of land management management of lands and resources to the forest program for the purpose of funding two additional preservation projects. . it encourages state and private efforts to protect environmentally sensitive forest lands. the program helps the states develop and carry out their forest conservation plans while encouraging and supporting acquisition of conservation he'sments. without removing the property from -- easements without removing the property.
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the additional funding my amendment provides will allow for the protection of 4,000 acres of pennsylvania forests in the northeast connection. mr. chairman, the northeast connection is a collaboration between the pennsylvania department of conservation and natural resources and three groups of over 150 families to conserve more than 4,000 forest acres which serve as a natural bridge between the 84,000-acre delaware state forest, which is managed by the commonwealth of pennsylvania, and the 77,000-acre delaware water gap national recreation area managed by the national park service. i believe this project is a crucial objective to preserving pennsylvania's and our nation's natural resources and beauty. again, i want to thank the chairman for his hard work on the underlying bill. i look forward to working with the chairman and robust funding for this program -- on robust funding for this program. mr. calvert: i serve of certainly appreciate -- i certainly appreciate the gentleman's willingness to work
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with us. we support the forest legacy program and i pledge to you we'll continue to work with you and other supporters of the program as we move this process along. mr. fitzpatrick: i thank the chairman for his desire to provide additional resources if possible to the forest legacy program. it's a great program for our nation. well utilized by states and local communities and private landowners. i look forward to working with the chairman. with that i withdraw the amendment. the chair: without objection, the amendment is withdrawn. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. thompson: i have amendment number 17 at the desk. the clerk: the clerk will report the amendment.
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the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. thompson of pennsylvania. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following, limitation on use of funds to treat northern long eared bat as endangered species. section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used by the united states fish and wildlife service or any other agency of the department of the interior to treat the northern long eared bat as an endangered species under the endangered species act of 1973. 16 united states code, 1531. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333, the gentleman
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from pennsylvania and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman the u.s. fish and wildlife service has released a final role listing the northern long eared bat as thretsened under the endangered species act. while certain colonies of the species of bat have seen dramatic population losses in recent years, fish and wildlife has repeat lid asserted that the underlying -- repeatedly asserted that the underlying fundamental cause is a fungle disease, known as the white-nose syndrome. it does not directly kill or harm these bats, rather it wakes them out of hibernation resulting in the bats burning through stored fat and leaving their area in search of food when none is often found or available. i'm pleased that this legislation, the underlying legislation contains funding for white-nosed syndrome research. bats play a critical role in the ecosystem.
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and more needs to be done in order to restore colonies devastated by white nose. however, as we allow for necessary habitat conservation, we must also ensure that activities occurring in the vast range are not unreasonably or unnecessarily impacted as a result of the endangered species act listing. specifically, such a listing could have great impacts on forest management, forest products agriculture, energy production, mining and commercial development. because of the species of bat is found in 38 states and washington, d.c., the listing under the endangered species act would have significant impacts through this enormous geographical range. my amendment is simple. it merely prohibits the department of interior for peard of one year from considering -- for a period of one year from considering any rules or any action to treat the northern long eared bat as endangered which is the most restrictive form of listing.
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the intention is to ensure reasonable land use within the bat's range wlile fish and wildlife continues to research -- range while fish and wildlife continues to research a cure for the syndrome. i urge my colleagues to vote yes on the amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek recognition? ms. mccollum: thank you, mr. chairman. i claim the time in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: this amendment would prohibit fish and wildlife service from treating the northern long eared bat battalion as endangered under the endangered species act. fish and wildlife service listed the northern long eared bat as threatened. threatened. with an interim role in april of this year. since the bat was listed as threatened and not endangered, this amendment would have no effect on the services implementation of the role. even though the amendment has no practical effect, i strongly oppose its intent.
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which runs counter to the fundamental principle that science, science should govern our determinations under our environmental laws. bats are critically important to the ecosystem. and a study published in science magazine found the value of pest control services provided by insect eating bats in the united states ranges from the low of 3.7 billion to the high of 53 billion dollars a year. additionaly, researchers warned that a notable economic losses to the northern american agriculture could occur in the next four to five years as a result of emerging threats to bat populations. bats play an important role in our economy. when it comes to eliminating pests. the primary factor threatening the northern long eared bat is a fungal disease called white knows syndrome, as has been mentioned -- white nose syndrome, as has been mentioned. because this disease has reduced populations of the bat, human activities that might not
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have been significant in the past are now having a greater effect. it's appropriate that fish and wildlife service is taking steps to protect the species. but we should not be supporting the fish and wildlife service in its efforts -- we should be supporting them, not blocking the agency from doing its job. so i rise in opposition to this amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: mr. chairman, i thank the gentlelady for her perspectives. certainly a number those points i agree with. the value of the bats, as chairman of the conservation forestry subcommittee and agriculture, bats serve a very important purpose. i also agree with her premise, although i think her interpretation of what the science is is somewhat misguided, science is extremely important. and the science has showed in fact the agency responsible for oversight on the endangered species act has publicly acknowledged that any
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job-crushing restrictions on industries related to habitat under an endangered listing with these bats will not help the northern long eared ballot. -- bat. the threat really is going from a -- to an endangered listing, which would do that. i would agree the fish and wildlife service needs resources. quite frankly, they're getting those. just last week they released a million dollars toward studying the white nose syndrome. with this underlying bill i believe there's an amount of of $10 million to study the syndrome. it's a fun gus, it's not industries that work within the habitat. quite frankly, we need to give the fish and wildlife service what they need and that is the support that they have already, that they released last week through mini grants, throughout many stat states, and the $10 million and this yunled lying
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bill. i would ask for support of my amendment and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: thank you, mr. chairman. i read from the amendment, none of the funds made available by this act may be used by fish and wildlife or any other service or agency in the department of interior to treat the northern long eared bat as endangered species. first off, i reiterate again, it is lists as threatened, not as endangered. and this amendment doesn't even address the role the forest service would still have. so this is a poorly constructed amendment. and we need to be very, very careful and very thoughtful when we write these amendments and make sure that we not only give fish and wildlife the tools that they need, that when something is threatened and not endangered we let the forest, whether it's forest service interior, whether it's u.s. fish and wildlife, we need to let them do their job based on the science.
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with that i yield back the balance of my time. and i do not support the amendment. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from pennsylvania. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? >> i have two amendments at the desk. the chair: will the gentleman specify which amendment? >> number 38 coming first. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. lamborn of colorado. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following. section, none of the funds made available by this act shall be used to implement or enforce the threatened species listing of the jumping mouse under the endangered species act of 1973, 16 united states code 1531.
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the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333, the gentleman from colorado and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the jumping mouse is a tiny rodent with a body approximately three inches long with a four to six-inch tail and large hind feet adamented for jumping. this largely nocturnal mouse lives primarily in stream site ecosystems along the foothills of southeastern wyoming, south of colorado springs in my district, along the front range of colorado. to evade predators, the mouse can jump like a miniature kangaroo, up to 18 inches high, using its six-inch-long whip-like tail as a rudder to switch directions in midair. but the little acrobat's most famous feat was its leap onto the endangered species list in may, 1998. a move that has hindered development in moist meadows and stream site areas from colorado springs colorado, to laramie, wyoming. among many projects that have
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been affected, the parkway southeast of rocky flats and expansion of a reservoir, and housing developments in el paso county, along tributaries of monument creek. builders, landowners and local governments in affected areas have incurred hundreds of millions of dollars in added costs because of the mouse. and protecting the mouse has even been placed ahead of protecting human life. let me explain why that's the case. on september 11, 2013, colorado experienced a major flood event which damaged or destroyed thousands of homes, important infrastructure and public works projects. and while colorado's come a long way in rebuilding there remains a lot of work to be done. as a result of the mouse's listing as an endangered species, many restoration projects were delayed as congress sought a waiver. in fact, fema was so concerned that they sent out a notice that stated, quote, legally required review may cause some delay in projects undertaken in
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the mouse habitat unquote. it goes on to warn that, quote, local officials who proceed with projects without adhering to an environmental -- to environmental laws risk fines and could lose federal funding for their projects, unquote. and while a waiver was eventually granted, the fact remains that the scientific evidence does not justify these delays or the millions of taxpayer dollars that go toward protecting a rodent that is actually part of a larger group that roams northern -- the north american continent. . several scientific studies report the mouse doesn't warrant protection because it isn't a subspecies at all and is part of the bear mouse jumping species. even the scientist who initially called it a subspecies has recanted his work. and hundreds of millions of
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dollars that have already been spent on its protection could have been spent on other species or other uses to flesh good. the threats that transportation have
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it might undue a lot of work that's done that's well on its way of having its mouth removed off the endangered species list.
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so i would certainly think that a righter on this billed is not about to have a robust debate about how close it we are. and by putting this language in the bill that it undoes a lot of potential work. and it chips away at the very foundation of the endangered species act which makes me wonder if the intent of many of the amendments being offered is not only to chip away but to do away with endangered species acts. with that i reserve the balance of my time. >> the gentleman from colorado is recognized. >> all i'll say is that this is
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a sub species -- actually it's not even a species or sub specieses. it's actually part of the bear lodge jumping mouse population. for that reason it shouldn't even be on the list in the first place. with that i yield back. >> the general laid disrecognized. >> i think that the chairman and to the gentlemen's marks this is not the place as a writer on the environmental appropriations bills to to be having these thoughtful discussions. if that's what needs to take place this is not the bill to be doing that. an authorizing committee and you can bring all the scientists in.
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the bald eagle is an american success story. is this a symbol of our nation with the continuing benefit of future generations and feels like we lost sight of being able to do that today especially with the lack of transparency and full debate that takes place with all these writers being offered on an operational bill. congress needs to give consideration what kind of legacy we're leaving and our children want us to do a better job than put writers on to an appropriation bill. i urge my colleagues to oppose these amendment.
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none of the funds made available maybe used to implement or en230rs the the endangered species of any plant or wildlife that is required by section four c two of the endangered species act of 1973. >> pursuant to house resolution 333 the gentleman from colorado the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. >> thank you, chairman. mr. chairman my a10:00ed amendment is straightforward. it ensures that the u.s. fish and wildlife sources has to follow section four c two. it prohibits any funds in the bill from being used to implement or enforce the listings of any plant or
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wildlife that has not under gone the review that is required under law. the purpose of a five year review is to ensure that threatened and endangered species has appropriate level of protection. the reviews assess each threatened and endangered species to determine whether its status has changed since the time of its lifting or last status review and whether it should be removed from the list reclassified from endangered to threatened down, listed or reclassified from threatened to endangered up listed or maintain its current classification. you can find all this on the website of the u.s. fish and wildlife service.
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despite this common sense requirementment the u.s. fish and wildlife service has acknowledges that it reflect. for example, in florida alone it found that 77 species out a total of 124 were overdo for a five year review. in other words the government has not followed the law for a 62% species in that state. it had failed to follow the law for roughly two thirds of the state's species listed under the endanger species act and was forced by the courts to conduct the require reviews of 194 species. by enforcing the five year review which is in current law, my amendment will ensure the u.s. fish and wildlife service using the best scientific
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information. and assessing on going conservation efforts. these are things we should all be in agreement w i encourage my colleagues to join me to ensure that the fish and wildlife service follows the endanger species act and do not provide money in this bill that would violate current law and i reserve the balance of my time. i claim the time and opposition to this amendment. >> the laid disrecognized >> this would prohibit the wild life service from implementing the spear she's that is not under gone a i claim the time and opposition to this amendment. >> the laid review. this amendment joins a growing list of anti-endangered species act. it would block the lifting of any species that does not receive status review. however with over 1,500 domestic
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listed species that would amount over 300 stat is reviews every year. why hasn't fish and wildlife done it? because we, congress, does not provide fish and wildlife service with enough resources to complete such a large task. follow the law? they would love to. in fact, this bill that we're considering right now imincludes a 50% cut in the lifting program. how can they follow the law when congress doesn't put any tools in the tool box allowing them do their job? i how can they follow the law? is congress ready to provide the funding. this amendment only seeks to undermine the endangered species act because there's not enough
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money in here for -- that congress can provide fish and wildlife to do the job in the fashion that congress has asked it to do. nrd to list a species -- in order to list a species under the endangered species act, it follows a strict legal process known as rule making procedure. first step assessing the status of the species, they identify the species believed to meet the definition of threatened or endangered. the species are candidates. now, these notices of review then, the service goes out and seeks biological information to complete the status of reviews for the candidate species. then the service publishes those notices in the federal register so the process is transparent to the public. as you can see the fish and wildlife service follows an open transparent policy that adequately reviews the species prior to listing. this amendment would exploit a five-year review backlog that
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has been caused in part by this congress un-- congress' unwillingness to provide adequate funding in order to attack the endangered species list. let's be transparent about that. the endangered species act exists to ensure protection for species survival and quite frankly the majority of our constituents support that. so let's make sure science and species management practices continue to dictate pee cease listing, not congress. and let's -- species listing, not congress. and let's figure out a way to come together to give fish and wildlife the tools they need to follow the laws the congress has requested them to follow and not do a smoke and mirror show about how fish and wildlife is refusing to follow the law. they can only do what they're able to do with the dollars that congress appropriates to them.
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with that, i yield -- i retain my time. the chair: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman is recognized. mr. lamborn: thank you, mr. chairman. i'm glad my congress acknowledged that it is required under the law for fish and wildlife service to do these five-year reviews. thank you for admitting that. their budget is approximately $1.4 billion. $1.4 billion. and they are able to prioritize within that $1.4 billion where they spend their resources. it's not congress' fault. they just haven't made it a priority. they should make a priority of following the law. they can do these few hundred reviews every year if out of $1.4 billion i am sure, so i would ask my colleagues to support this amendment, let's require this agency to follow the laws that are on the books, and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: i want to be
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really clear. this bill now includes a 50% cut to the listing program. the listing program is money that congress puts in to do the reviews. congress cut it by 50%. they can't just transfer money around. we have handcuffed and tied up the fish and wildlife service by the amount of funding that congress gives them to do their job. they don't wake up in the morning and say we don't want to follow the law. they wake up in the morning and they say how much congress has appropriated. mr. lamborn: would the gentlelady yields? i want to point out what you're talking about is in the future. i'm talking about the current status of them not following the law. ms. mccollum: reclaiming my time. they do not have the funding, congress has not given them the funding in the listing program to do their job. congress needs to be held
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accountable for the 300 listings not being able to be done every year because congress has failed to give them the money to do the laws that congress passed. with that, i reclaim my time and if i have any remaining, i yield it back. the chair: the gentlelady yields. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from virginia seek recognition? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. will the gentleman specify the amendment? mr. goodlatte: it's the only amendment i have before -- it's a revised version of the
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amendment. it's labeled goodlatte 33. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. goodlatte of virginia. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following. section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used by the environmental protection agency to take any of the actions described as a back stop in the december 29 2009 letter from the e.p.a.'s regional administrator to the states in the watershed and the district of columbia in response to the development or implementation of a states watershed imple membertation and referred to -- implementation and referred to in enclosure b of such letter. the chair: the gentleman from virginia and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from virginia. mr. goodlatte: thank you mr. chairman. i yield myself such time as i may consume.
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mr. chairman, my amendment simply prohibits the e.p.a. from using the chesapeake bay total maximum daily load and the watershed implementation plans to take over states' water quality strategies, protecting the soing the -- 10th amendment rights of states across the nation from the heavy hand of the e.p.a. this amendment makes it clear that congress intended for the clean water act to be state-led, not subject to the whims of politicians and bureaucrats in washington, d.c. over the last several years the e.p.a. has implemented a total maximum daily load plan for the chesapeake bay watershed which strictly limits the amount of nutrients that can enter the chesapeake bay. while a laudable goal and one i support in principle, through its implementation the e.p.a. has basically given every state in the watershed an ultimatum. either the state does exactly what the e.p.a. says, or it faces the threat of an e.p.a. takeover of their water quality programs.
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in some cases, the e.p.a. will even rewrite the states' water quality plans if they disagree with the states' decisions. i want to make it perfectly clear that this amendment would not stop the e.p.a. from working with the states to restore the chesapeake bay, nor would it in any way undermine the cleanup efforts already under way. i repeat, our amendment does not stop the tmdl or watershed implementation plans from moving forward and it does not prevent the e.p.a. from working cooperatively with the states to help restore the chesapeake bay. this amendment is very carefully crafted to address the 10th amendment federalism issues that the e.p.a.'s encroaching upon and does not address the states' laudable goals of continuing to improve the health of the chesapeake bay. the states should be able to use any resources the e.p.a. may have available to help develop and implement a strategy to restore the bay. this amendment only stops the e.p.a. -- the ability of the
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e.p.a. to step in and take over a state's plan. again, ensuring states' rights remain in tact and not usurped by the e.p.a. mr. chairman, the bay is a national treasure and i want to see it restored. but we know that in order to achieve this goal, the states and the e.p.a. must work together. the e.p.a. cannot be allowed to railroad the states and mike manage the process -- micromanage the process. with this amendment we're simply telling the e.p.a. to respect the important role states play in implementing the clean water act and help prevent another federal power grab by the administration. i'm pleased to yield to the chairman. mr. calvert: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i certainly agree with the amendment. i urge the adoption of the gentleman's amendment and i yield back. the chair: i thank the gentleman and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does -- mr. goodlatte: i thank the gentleman and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlelady seek recognition? the gentlelady is recognized.
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ms. edwards: thank you, mr. chairman. here we go again. yet another fix in search of a problem. mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to mr. goodlatte's amendment. it would deliberately undermine the crucial work that's already being done to rehabilitate the chesapeake bay. it would also undermine the historic federal-state partnership that's done so much already to improve the quality of the bay and its surroundings. the cheese peek bay is a national treasure -- chesapeake bay is a national treasure, it's the nation's large ms. esty: wear. it benefits all american -- largest estuary. it benefits all americans. the states and the chesapeake bay watershed, including the gentleman's own home state of virginia, have been working together for over 40 years to clean up the bay and guess what? mr. chairman it's working. the chesapeake bay's program's most recent interim report shows that the tremendous
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progress has been made, states are meeting the pollution reduction goals in their plans. in fact, some are exceeding them. studies show that so-called dead zones in the bay are shrinking and key populations such as oysters are starting to rebound. under the cheese peek bay, clean water blue -- bay clean water blueprint, states implement their own pollution reduction plan. the e.p.a. the cities -- sets up an initial framework, but the details of how each state chooses to reach the targets in fact are state-driven and state-implemented. my own home state of maryland has created a plan to reduce its nitrogen levels by 46%, phosphorous by 48% and setment by 2% -- sediment below 28%. of course each of the bay watershed states depends on the other states to implement these plans simultaneously and in good faith. after all, mr. chairman, watersheds don't stop at the state borders. and the kind of go it alone approach that seems to be advocated by the majority has
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never worked for environmental issues and it will not work to preserve and to save the chesapeake bay. failure, for example, by one state to do its part threatens the work and hundreds of millions of dollars that all the other states have invested in their plans. i don't want to see maryland's work jeopardized because another state in the watershed doesn't meet its responsibilities. and only the e.p.a. can stand as the arbiter to make sure that that is true. so as a safety measure against that kind of bad faith by one of the partners, the e.p.a. is a back stop for actions that it can take to ensure that the other states' investments are preserved. these back stop actions are not new authorities. but they're existing authorities that the e.p.a. can use to make the needed pollution reductions. that's been part of the partnership for 40 years. in fact, just yesterday the u.s. third circuit court of appeals in philadelphia unanimously affirmed the
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e.p.a.'s authority to place restrictions on wastewater treatment and runoff by farms and construction. the e.p.a. places limits on the amount of nitrogen, phosphorous and sediment that are allowed in the watershed and thus into the bay. this is known as the total maximum daily load or tmdl. chemical runoff that the bay's watershed can handle while still meeting water quality standards. the coordinate's decision strongly affirmed, quote that the states and e.p.a. could work together, best allocate the benefits and burdens of lowering pollution. it's in fact an acknowledge thament this is a partnership that requires the full participation of the environmental protection agency. and the goal of the partnership is not just an environmental one. according to a peer-reviewed report by the chesapeake bay foundation, the economic impact of full implementation of the clean water blueprint is more than $22 billion annually. and yet this amendment, by one of virginia's own members,
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actually threatens that partnership by borrowing the -- barring the e.p.a. from using funds to take any back stop actions. it would allow one state to break its agreement and cease implementing the plan. and with that i would urge a no vote on this amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. ms. edwards: i reserve. mr. goodlatte: i ask how much time is remaining on each side. the chair: the gentleman has 2 1/2 minutes. mr. goodlatte: and -- the chair: the gentlelady's time has expired. mr. goodlatte: at this time it's my pleasure to yield one minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. thompson chairman of the pertinent subcommittee in the agriculture committee. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: i rise in support of mr. goodlatte's amendment. since 2009 i've been hearing directly from my constituent, many of which are small farmers, about the significant challenges and costs of the chesapeake bay total maximum daily load mandate. these significant concerns also extend to the state and local
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governments because the billions of dollars in direct costs and new regulatory burdens that tmdl imposes. no doubt the chesapeake bay is a national treasure. but it's quickly becoming the national treasury with all these costs. and taxes upon our states and local municipalities. the agriculture committee's conservation subcommittee which i have the honor of chairing is also directly heard from the stakeholders over the past few congresses. while each and every one of these witnesses whole heartedly supports the restoration of the chesapeake bay, the there remains great concern -- there remains great concern over the lack of consistent models, the heavy-handed approach over tmdl and the lack of flexibility while implementing the whips. this amendment is needed in order to allow for that flexibility at the state and local levels. pennsylvania has been very innovative in our efforts to do our part with the bay restoration and that innovation will continue into the future. however rather than actively -- the chair: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds.
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mr. thompson: i thank the chairman. however, rather than acting punetively the e.p.a. must work -- punitively, the e.p.a. must work collaboratively with states. i strongly support this amendment and urge my colleagues to vote yes. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. goodlatte: thank you. i yield myself the balance of the time. the want to thank the gentleman from pennsylvania. he's quite right. this is very costly for the states. the state of virginia has estimated that -- a cost of over $16 billion to comply with the back stop requirements of the e.p.a. that's just one of the six states. secondly the e.p.a. has been asked repeatedly, including in hearings conducted by the gentleman from pennsylvania in his subcommittee, and at my request and the request of others, to do a cost-benefit analysis. to show us that these multitens of billions of dollars that these six states will collectively spend will be reflected in improvements to the quality of the chesapeake
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bay. and they have never provided that cost-benefit anal sills. and finally, -- anal sills. and finally, -- analysis. and finally, i'd say to the gentlewoman from maryland, she's quite right, tremendous has hoh gress has been made in improve -- tremendous progress has been made to improve the chesapeake bay. sed mentation phosphorous, nitrogen are all down. more than 40%. sed mentation more than 50%. going into the bay. the bay is improving in its health because of the work done by the states. they should have the authority to do this without having the e.p.a. hold a gun to hair head and that's why this amendment should be passed. i urge my colleagues to support it. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from virginia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed. to ms. edwards: mr. chairman.
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i would ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from virginia will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentlelady from tennessee seek recognition? mrs. black: mr. chairman i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mrs. black of tennessee. insert the following section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used by the environmental protection agency to finalize, implement, administer or enforce section 1037.601-a-16
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title 40, code of federal regulations, as proposed to be revised under the proposed rule entitled greenhouse gas emissions and fuel efficiency stads -- standards for medium and heavy duty engines and vehicles, phase two. signed by the administrator of the environmental protection agency on june 19 2015. docket number e.p.a. h.q.o.a.r. 2014 08-0827. or any rule of the same substance with respect to glider kits and glider vehicles as defined in section 1037.801 of title 40 code of federal regulations as proposed to be revised under such proposed rule. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333 the gentlelady from tennessee and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from tennessee. mrs. black: mr. chairman, i rise today to offer an amendment to protect tennessee
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workers and small manufacturing businesses from the e.p.a.'s latest overreach. last month the e.p.a. released its phase two fuel efficiency and emissions standards for the new medium and heavy duty trucks. while many in the trucking industry are not opposed to this rule as a whole, one section in the proposal wrongly applies these new standards to what is known as glider kits. i recently toured a business in my district that manufactures these kits, so for those who don't know, a glider kit is a group of truck parts that can include a brand new frame, cab and axels but does not include an engine or transmission. . since a flider kit -- glider kit is less expensive than a new truck, drivers with damaged older vehicles may decide to purchase a kit instead of a new
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vehicle. unfortunately, the e.p.a. is seeking to apply the new phase two standards to glider kits even though the gliders are not new vehicles. this directly impacts my district where we have glider kits being manufactured and purchased by companies in places like birds town, sparta and jamestown. communities that are already struggling with an above average unemployment and with -- would see job opportunities put further out of reach if this misguided rule goes into effect. it is also unclear whether the e.p.a. even has the authority to regulate replacement parts like gliders in the first place. what's more, while the e.p.a.'s stated goal with phase two is to reduce groan house gas emailingses, they have not studied the impact of remanufactured engines in the gliders compared to new vehicles. if the e.p.a. is going to promulgate rules that hurt jobs
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in a district like mine, the least they could do is have a few facts prepared to back them up. under this ill-advised rule, drivers wishing to use glider kits would be forced to use a completely new vehicle instead. reducing glider sales would also end up limiting consumer choice in the marketplace. that is why my amendment protects businesses, jobs and consumers by prohibiting the e.p.a. from moving forward with this phase two standard on glider kit. to be clear, this amendment would not bar the e.p.a. from implementing the phase two rules for new medium and heavy trucks. it would simply clarify that tpwhrider kits and glider vehicles are not new trucks as the e.p.a. wrongly claims. i urge my colleagues support this commonsense amendment to help support american manufacturing and stop the e.p.a. from attempting to shut down the glider industry.
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>> would the gentlelady yield? mrs. black: i yield. mr. calvert: it's my understanding that the proposed rule is supported broadly by many in the manufacturing industry, so for that reason i support her amendment. however, with any rule there are some specifics we need to iron out. i'd like to work with my colleague and with e.p.a. to see if we cant resolve the specifics between now and the final rule. in the meantime irk support the language and urge members to vote yes on this amendment. i thank the gentlelady. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. mrs. black: i reserve. the chair: for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek recognition? ms. mccollum: mr. chairman, i claim time in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: although i'm hopeful that the discussion that the subcommittee chair and the author of the amendment might, you know, prove something better than what this amendment is
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currently in front of us. what i have to work on is what's currently in front of me. just over two weeks ago, the environmental protection agency and the national highway safety administration issued proposed fuel efficiency standards for immediate yalm -- medium and heavy duty trucks required by an energy independence and security act this amendment would prohibit the e.p.a. from finalizing implementing and enforcing this proposed rule or any future rules. so this is where i'm concerned about the way this amendment is moving forward with respect to glider vehicles. this -- these new standards were designed to improve fuel efficiency, cut carbon pollution and reduce impacts of climate change. to be specific, these standards are expected to lower co-2 emissions by roughly one billion metric tons, cut fuel costs by $170 million and reduce oil
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consumption up to 1.8 billion barrels over the lifetime of vehicles sold under this program. heavy trucks account for 5% of the vehicles on the road yet they create 20% of the greenhouse gas emotions. this amendment does not actually suspend all aspects of the new rule. as was pointed out it carves out an exemption for one particular industry, an industry that produces what has been called today glider vehicles. and as has been pointed out, glider vehicles are heavy duty vehicles that are -- that replace older remanufactured engines on new truck chassis. these engines date back to 2001 or older and they have emissions that are 20 to 40 times higher than today's clean diesel engines. iness sense, this would allow an
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entire segment of the truck manufacturing industry to avoid compliance with the pollutant standards. these are engines that will continue toe mitt greenhouse gases, slow down our progress and reduce the impacts of climate change. in short, this amendment creates a loophole that you could drive a truck through by allowing dirty engines to continue to pollute our environment. i urge my colleagues to oppose this amendment and yield back the remainder of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields. the gentlelady from tennessee is recognized. mrs. black: i want to once again reiterate this is a very narrow amendment. it does not apply to new trucks as the e.p.a. rule indicates. i also want to reiterate one more time that they have not studies the emissions impact of these remanufactured engines and the gliders compared to new vehicles so we would like to have that information as well. but i also want to add that the military also uses glider kiss
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and this rule would not apply to them. once again we're putting into place something where we say, this is what the government can do, but this is what the private sector can do. so i urge my colleagues to support this commonsense amendment. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentlelady from tennessee. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from florida seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. mica of florida. at the end of the bill before the short title, insert the following, section 441 none of the funds made available by this act may be used to implement
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alternative a alternative c or alternative d in the final management plan for castillo desan marcos national monument in st. augustine florida, or the law authorized by public law 41, nor shall funds be expended for a new general management plan other than the general management plan published in the federal register september 10, 2007. chip pursuant to house resolution 333, the gentleman from florida and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from florida. mr. mica: every year, nearly 1.5 million visitors come to the castillo san morcass monument in america's oldest city, st. augustine, florida. way back some 11 years ago new york december of 2004, i passed legislation authorizing a
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visitors center for the castillo san marcos which was signed into law. the castillo fortress is the largest spanish fortress in the continental united states and with its cob instruction which was complete -- with its construction completed in 1695. after the authorization was signed into law, significant, thor rogue, costly and time consuming studies and reports were completed after many reviews, hearings, public forums and then in 2007, three years later, the park service came up with a final general management plan. this plan developed four alternatives. one was to do nothing. that was a. two others, c and d were to possibly build on land that will
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no longer be available that was going to be made available by the state and the city. so that leaves one alternative. this is a very simple clarifying amendment, alternative intmbings the one that we would like funds spent -- alternative 2 is the one that we would like funds spent on. no funds should be wasted to go toward a project that isn't going to happen. so this is a simple clarifying amendment. it would specifically limit funds from being expended on any alternative except for b which is in the plan. it doesn't say we have to do another plan. why spend more taxpayer moneys to do another plan? and that's all it says. so it's a simple thing to get us moving, to proceed with a final design without further cost and further delaying the process, a
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visitor center at castillo is long overdue it's overdue on st. augustine's 450th founding anniversary. i urge its passage. mr. calvert: would the gentleman yield? mr. mica: yes. mr. calvert: i appreciate the gentleman raising this issue. i always learn new facts. i didn't know st. augustine's -- st. augustine was the oldest city. mr. mica: some people think it's williamsburg. mr. calvert: i learn something new. i know you've been working on this for a number of years. the castillo desan marcos needs a new visitors center. we have no objection to this amendment. mr. michael: i yield back --
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mr. mica: i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from florida. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. burgess of texas. at the end of the bill before the short title, insert the following new section. section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used by the administrator of the environmental protection agency to hire or pay the salary of any officer or employee of the environmental protection agency under subsection f or g of section 207 of the public health service act, 42 united states code 209, who is not already receiving pay under either such subsection on the date of
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enactment of this act. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333 the gentleman from texas and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas. mr. burgess: i thank the chairman for the recognition. i thank the subcommittee chairman for indulgence at this late hour. mr. chairman, this is an issue that's been under investigation by the subcommittee of oversight and investigations on the energy and commerce committee for over the last six years. in 2006, without consultation from the energy and commerce committee, there was included a provision in the annual interior e.p.a. appropriations bill that allowed the environmental protection agency to begin using a special program that was explicitly and exclusively authorized for use by the public health service administration under the department of health and human services. this special mechanism allows the government employee to leave the normal g.s. pay scale and
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receive nearly uncapped composition upwards of $200,000 to $300,000 per year. the special provision was intended to be used only in unique circumstances where perhaps leaders of the health care industry would not be able to work for the federal government because of pay considerations if they did not have access to higher salaries. but this justification cannot be used for anyone at the environmental protection agency. indeed some of the employees at the environmental protection agency paid under title 42 were previously government workers and were merely moved to this special pay scale because they wanted additional money. the e.p.a. claims that because the environmental protection agency is a health organization, it may use this statute to pay special hires and this in fact has endured for several years.
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originally, the environmental protection agency was granted only a handful of slots to fill with title 42 hires. that number is now over 50. the cost to taxpayers for these 50 employees is in the tens of millions of dollars. this this would prevent the environmental protection agency from hiring any new employees under title 42 or transferring current employees from the g.s. pay scale to title 42. it would not affect current employees being paid by this provision. it would give the energy and commerce committee the authorizing committee the time it needs to address whether the environmental protection agency truly deserves this special pay contribution. now, the general accountability office looked into the abuse of title 42 several years ago and found numerous problems with the implementation of the program. why we would allow this problema this problematic pay structure to be advanced by the e.p.a. is in
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fact mysterious. in multiple hearings in the energy and commerce committee, both administrator lisa jackson and current administrator jena mccarthy refused to give specifics regarding this program. freedom of information act request by the e.p.a. union, the american federation of governmental employees shared with my office showed that title 42 hires at the e.p.a. are actually sewing the seeds of discontent amongst workers, with the union asking that congress stop this unfair hiring technique. both former energy and commerce chairman barton and i have introduced legislation further clarify that the public health services act written for the department of health and human services does not permit the environmental protection agency to use its language to hire employees under a special pay structure. this amendment prevents further abuses of the program and i urge its adoption. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek
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recognition? ms. mccollum: i rise in opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: the e.p.a. is one of several government agencies that uses special authority to hire federal employees with specific scientific research credentials. in fact, when the republicans were the majority party in 2006, they started this program. the e.p.a. didn't start this program on its own. congress started it in 2006 under republican majority. the national institutes of health uses title 42 money authority to attract top-tier scientists in their fields to do important research. now, we've been listening to many hours this evening, to many of my colleagues, republican colleagues, criticizing the e.p.a.'s scientific conclusions. now it amazes me that the gentleman wants to reduce the agency's ability to hire the top scientists. further, the national academy
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of sciences has favorably reported to the committee that the e.p.a.'s effectively utilizing -- excuse me its title 42 authority. if a scientist retires or moves on, the agency would no longer be able to attract a suitable replacement if this amendment were to pass. for those who think the e.p.a. doesn't have adequate scientific basis for its regulations, they should be with me and they should clearly vote against this amendment. we should be doing more to ensure that our environmental policies are being set by the best and the brightest. in this amendment would ensure that the e.p.a. can't recruit new scientists using its limited title 42 authority, which was given to them the e.p.a., in 2006. by a republican congress. with that i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman from texas is recognized. mr. burgess: i urge support of the amendment it's clear that
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this program does need the scrutiny of the authorizing committee. we are prepared to do that if this amendment passes. i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from texas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. westmoreland of georgia. at the end of the bill, before the short title, insert the following. section, none of the munds made available by this act may be used to pay legal fees pursuant to a settlement in any case in which the federal government is a party that arises under, one, the clean air act 42 united states code 7401, two, the
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federal water pollution control act 33 united states code 1251 or, three, the endangered species act of 1973, 16 united states code 1531. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333 the gentleman from georgia and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from georgia. mr. westmoreland: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, the united states is facing a crisis of executive overreach and nowhere else is this more true than the environmental protection agency. the e.p.a.'s escalation of sue and settle cases to change the law through federal court rulings threatens our economy and the ability to create jobs, not to mention bypassing the normal rulemaking process. by operating hand in hand with radical environmental groups that are willing participants in these types of actions, the e.p.a.'s use of sue and settle not only endangers the economy,
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but also our constitutional spravings powers -- separation of powers. here's how it works. an organization suse the e.p.a. or an agency such as the u.s. fish and wildlife demanding that the agency apply the law in a new unintended and expanded way that increases the agency's jurisdiction. the agency, rather than defending the law, enters into a consent decree with the party who filed the original lawsuit. a judge then signs the consent degree -- decree without significant review, since the two disputing parties are in agreement. suddenly the agency has new expansive powers to yield against job creators in the form of legally binding settlements that creates rules and priorities outside of normal rulemaking process. between 2009 and 2012, the e.p.a. chose not to defend itself in over 60 of these lawsuits from special interest
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advocacy groups. those 60 lawsuits resulted in settlement agreements and the e.p.a. publishing more than 100 new regulations. also included in these legally binding settlements are requirements that u.s. taxpayers must pay for the attorneys of the organization that instigated the action. according to a 2011 g.a.o. report between 1995 and 2010, three large environmental activist groups like the sierra club received almost $6 million in attorneys' fees alone. an example of sue and settle occurred with a startup, shutdown and malfunction rule. this was in response to a sue and settle agreement that the e.p.a. made with the sierra club in 2011. it's noted by a louisiana senator in a letter to e.p.a. administrator mccarthy in 2013,
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instead of defending e.p.a.'s own regulations in the s.s.m. provisions in the e.p.a.-approved air programs of 39 states, e.p.a. simply agreed to include an obligation to respond to the petition in a settlement of an entirely separate lawsuit. sue and settle is made possible because under the clean air act, clean water act and the endangered species act, potential litigants are given broad standing to go to court because congress has causes of actions under these laws. under my amendment, no funds can be used to pay legal fees under any settlement regarding any case arising under the three acts i mentioned. period. case closed. end of story. litigants can still sue but they no longer will be financially rewarded by the american taxpayer for their efforts. i am hopeful that my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will support this amendment to reduce a secretive transfer of
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u.s. taxpayer dollars to other organizations. by restricting federal agencies from having the ability to pay attorneys' fees we cannot only reduce federal spending but also reduce the incentive for these self-interest groups to continue suing the federal government and taking the american taxpayer dollars that could be used to reduce our federal deficit. it is inexcusable to require taxpayers to pay the legal bills of environmental groups to conclude the e.p.a. to expand the agency's abilities. this is one way congress can fight the expansion of executive powers by this administration and its most out of control agency. with this amendment, congress ken sure taxpayers are protected -- congress can ensure taxpayers are protected from funding the illegal efforts of environmental advocacy organizations. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek recognition? colorado
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ms. mccollum: i rise in strong opposition to this amendment. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: the equal access to justice law is the law of the land. it does allow for federal payment of legal fees within limits to individuals and small businesses and nonprofits who are the prevailing parties in actions against federal agencies. unless the agency is able to show that the action was substantially justified or a special circumstance, make adjust. this helps and encourages all parties, not just those with resources, to hire legal counsel, to assert their rights. i know my colleagues, including my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, will agree with me that the ability to challenge federal actions is the most important tool for ensuring government accountability. the clean air act, the federal water pollution control act and the endangered species act are also the law of the land. and these laws have contributed
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greatly to the protection and improvement of public health in this country. a study by a nonpartisan environmental law institute found that the equal access to justice act has been cost effective and only applies to notorious litigation that existing legal safeguards and the independent discretion of federal judges will continue to ensure its prudent application. so there are safeguards in place that this can't be misused. moreover, the claim that large environmental groups are getting rich on attorneys' fees is not supported by available evidence. the 2011 g.a.o. study be, which was just referenced, which was requested by house republicans brought cases against the e.p.a. they found that most of those suits were brought by trade associations, private companies
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and that attorneys' fees were only awarded in about % of the time. 8% of the time were attorneys' fees rewarded. and among the environmental play in this, the majority of those cases were brought by local groups rather than national groups. so it's completely unfair to target these important environmental safeguards for removal from the protections of the equal access justice act. but more importantly this amendment would have serious consequences for public health. in order for our nation's environmental safeguards to work properly and ensure the protection of public health, citizens, including those who -- with limited means, must have the ability to challenge federal actions. this amendment is clearly designed to make it more difficult for regular citizens to ensure the accountability of the federal government and i urge my colleagues to defeat this amendment and i reserve
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the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from georgia is recognized. mr. westmoreland: this does not prevent, mr. chairman, it doesn't prevent anybody from suing. what this does is stop the e.p.a. from this sue and settle, what i would call a scam, where it allows the groups or companies or whatever to come in and to sue and allow them, as i mentioned, 60 different cases it provided them to make 100 new rulings that did not you go g through the normal rulemaking procedure, but were done by court rulings. so with that i think it's just appropriate that we not allow taxpayer dollars to be spent on these attorneys' fees, used to do this, to promote the environmental protection agency rather than going through the regular rulemaking process, to do it by a court ruling. i reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady is recognized.
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ms. mccollum: thank you. so i just want to state again. the equal access to justice act is the law of the land. and it allows for federal payment of legal fees within limits to individuals and small business and nonprofits who are the prevailing parties in actions against the federal government. and we should be, you know, mindful, again, of the 2011 g.a.o. study that said in cases brought against the e.p.a. found that most suits were brought by trade associations, private countries and attorney fees and -- attorneys' fees were only awarded in about 8% of the cases. citizens need to be able to hold their government accountable. they need to be able to petition their government. and that means a citizen with limited means. and if that citizen wins and the judge decides it is just to award the costs, then that is the law of the land, which i support.
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private citizens, regular citizens, citizens without means can ensure that there's full accountability of the federal government to them. so i urge my colleagues to defeat this amendment and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman is recognized. mr. westmoreland: i'd like to repeat mr. chairman, this does not keep anybody from suing. the intent of this amendment is to keep the e.p.a. from creating rules by judicial bodies rather than a normal rulemaking procedure. and i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. en in president of -- in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it, the amendment is agreed. to ms. mccollum: i request a recorded vote, please. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia will be postponed. .
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for what purpose does the gentleman from indiana seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. rokita of indiana. at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following new section. enforcement of the endangered species act regarding certain mussels. section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used by the united states fish and wildlife service to enforce the endangered species act of 197316 united states code 1531 et sequitur with regard to club shell, rabbit shell snub nose mussels. the chair: the gentleman from indiana and a member opposed will each control five minutes. mr. row tiki ta: i thank the --
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mr. rokita: i thank the chair and i thank mr. calvert for managing the time. it's been five years since we've had these kinds of debates on the floor of the house and here we are at 12:30 at night and for myself i've listened to debate on the floor since 6:30. i was struck by the amount of amendments dealing with the endangered species act and number two, having to deal with the lists whether threatened or endangered lists of the endangered species act. clearly, and i awith the gentlelady on the other side of the aisle on this reform, and major reform of the endangered speest cease -- species act is needed. that will take some time. that discussion is ongoing, it's nothing that hasn't already started in this congress or previous congresses, and i look forward to being part of that solution in a very constructive way. but what about the near term.
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we have people human constituents, who are really suffering. and that's what my amendment mr. chairman, is about tonight. summer is a big time for any industry that depends on tourism to survive. i offer this amendment out of concern for two lakes, two lake communities in my district. just last year in the height of the summer's busy tourist season, the united states fish and wildlife service required that the northern indiana public service company locally known as nipsca, release more water from lake freeman to protect a bed of engaged -- endangered freshwater mussels all under the guise of the endangered species act. as a result, within days, water levels on the lake dropped dramatically. i visited with residents multiple times, i've seen the lake in person. growing up during the summers i spent my time on the sister
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lake schafer. many who live and work near the lake discovered to their surprise, the boats were stuck businesses were in jeopardy and home values were going down. more than that stumps were rising out of the water and personal safety were also in jeopardy. i contacted fish and wildlife. we created a technical assistance letter, otherwise known as a t.a.l., and it's my estimation that that's going to have some effect. i appreciate the reasonableness of all involved. but the current plan there is a temporary fix and really we ought to be able to do more. currently, fish and wildlife receives funding to enforce the endangered species act which protect -- protecting the species that live in the river. it gives the highest priority to protecting the species and
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there's little anyone can do in terms of exemptions or any balancing tests to make sure that there's not a solution that could be a win-win. it's a very draconian law. strict compliance. no balancing, no room -- no balancing test, no room for discretion or create i solution. that's where this reform is needed. the statute, like i said, provides no balancing test for weighing the economic harms and the salespeople court of this land has refused to allow us or even lower courts to construct their own test, us as citizens. compliance with this law as currently written requires water to balance water level despite consideration of the economic impact and human safety. in essence, my amendment limits the funding mechanism fish and wildlife would be able to use to enforce the act, the endangered species act with respect to these six types of muscles and eliminates repercussions for
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failing to enforce the law. lowering the water levels negatively affects the community and small businesses that rely on tourists that enjoy the lake and steady water level. lowerer levels pose dangerous conditions to boaters and swimmers and formerly under water tree stumps breach the water. s that preventable hazard to those who use the lake, again in a win-win way. it's all because of a draconian law that though well intended is in bad need of reform so that its practical effect can be overhauled and any of its misguided applications halted. hoosiers like myself are just as concerned for the environment as they are for incomes and family recreation. it's not about anti-environmentalism. but they believe there's a win-win solution here. if only the law would allow such a solution to exist. in the meantime we ought to defund fish and wildlife's ability to enforce this law as
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it's written. while i value nature and seek to protect endangered animals, the reward of protecting the mussel does not outweigh the economic damage done to the community or the safety and health of my human constituents. the fact that no balancing test was attempted or debated or implemented -- and in fact -- i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota seek -- gentlewoman from minnesota seek recognition? ms. mccollum: i claim time in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentlewoman is recognized. ms. mccollum: this would again prohibit fish and wildlife services from enforcing the engaged -- endangered spees' act and prevent them offer anything critical proke texts for these species. this is harmful and in my opinion misguided. once a species is listed it's the role of fish and wildlife service is primarily permissive,
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helping parties comply with the act as they comply with their activities the t.a.o. that the gentleman referred to. under this amendment all the endangered species act prohibitions would still apply but developers and land owners would have no avenue to comply with them. there could be no t.a.o. the fish and wildlife service would be barred from issuing permits or exemptions. this means land owners and industry and other parties who might need to take any of these six species of mussels would be vulnerable to a citizen suit. additionally it would halt fish and wildlife service enforcement of the endangered species act which has no effect on other federal agencies funded outside of this bill. the endanger e-- ethe endangered species act mandates that all federal dments and agencies conserve listed species and use their authorities in furthering the purpose of this act. under section 7 of the endangered species act
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stipulates that any federal agency that carries out permits, licenses, funds, or otherwise authorizes activities may affect all listed species must consult with the fish and wildlife service to ensure its actions are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any listed species. this amendment would stop, stop section 7 consultation requirements for federal agencies. so rather it would prohibit fish and wildlife from completing these consultations. that means a bridge a highway project, permitted or funded through federal highway administration or power projects permitted by the department of energy, would be vulnerable to delays and stoppages and other potential losses. this amendment in my opinion is an all out assault on the endangered species act. and one -- in one fell swoop it
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would block protections for six different species currently listed as threatened or endangered. regardless of one's position on the endangered spee's act it's just a bad amendment. the general -- the gentleman's amendment will create uncertainty for developers, land owners and leave them vulnerable to lawsuits. i don't think that was the gentleman's intention but that's the effect it will have. because it will block section 7 consultations, gumming permitting processing across the federal government, delaying projects and adversely impacting the economy. the amendment is bad for the environment, bad for the economy, bad for business, it's bad for highways an energy projects it's just a bad -- it's just bad for this bill. i urge my colleagues to reject this amendment and with that, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady's time has expired. the gentleman is recognized. mr. rokita --
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the chair: the question is on the amendment offeredy the gentleman from indiana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed. to -- is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. lamalfa of california. at the end of the bill before the short title insert the following. limentation on use of funds for attorney fees, section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used to pay attorney fees in a civil suit under section 11-g of the endangered species act of 1973, 16 united states code 1540-g, pursuant to a courted orer that states such fees were calculated at an hourly rate in excess of $125 per hour.
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chip pour sunt to house resolution -- the chair: pursuant to house resolution 333, the gentleman from california and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. lamalfa: thank you mr. chairman. i'm pleased to express my support for the job mr. calvert and the rest of the committee have done. this awards -- this alliance award limits for the endangered species act lawsuits with other lawsuits covered by the equal access justice act. it generally limits the hourly rate of awards for fees to a reasonable $125 per her. however, no such fee cap exists under the endangered species act. as a result, e.s.a. litigants are being awarded sums in excess of $600 per hour. the equal access to justice act was not intended as the
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extraordinary access to taxpayer dollars for environmental attorneys. indeed, we heard one of my colleagues a minute ago talk about sue and settle. according to the g.a.o., the department of interior paid out over $27 million in attorney fees between 2001 and 2010. $21 million of those were for endangered species act lawsuits, many of them settled with no court finding against the lit fwants to have prevailed on the merits of the case. no finding. mr. chairman it's time to close this loophole that enables excessive pay utahs to groups that have made a business of suing the federal government. there's no reason that one sort of lawsuit commonly undertaken by entities solely engaged in continuous lit fwation against the government should be paid more than any other. representative high venga sponsored a measure addressing this last session which was passed by the natural resources
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committee and i urge support which would be very much appreciated by people like my daughter whose birthday it is tonight so to have a chance to be in business and not have extraordinarily high fees. i reserve. the chair: for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek recognition? ms. mccollum: i claim time in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: the gentleman's amendment would prohibit funds in the act to be used to pay attorney fees in excess of $125 per hour for the endangered species act civil suits. now perhaps the gentleman's not aware that the equal access justice cap -- caps attorney fees at $125 per hour. unless the court, the court determines that an increase in the cost of living or special factors such as the limited availability of qualified attorneys for the proceedings involved justifies the higher fee.
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so it would be the court that would determine that. but the fee is capped at $125 an hour. so this is unnecessary and it's a redundant amendment. attorneys' fees for the endangered species act cases, as i said, are already capped at $125 per hour unless special criteria is stipulated by the equal access justice court. this amendment would effectively change that implementation of the equal access justice act for one specific policy area. one specific policy area. the endangered species act. again, higher attorney fees are only permitted in cases where specific criteria under the endangered species act is met. at best, this amendment is redundant. at worst, it's a back door attempt to undermine the engaged species act protections and make access to justice a lot less equal. in closing mr. chairman, we don't need any extraneous redundant provisions to a bill
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that's already overburdened with harmful legislative riders. i urge my colleagues to oppose this amendment and i yield back my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. . mr. lamalfa: i appreciate the comments from my colleague from minnesota here. it hasn't been equal already. this amendment seeks to actually put that cap on there. there will still be the ability for a court in extraordinary circumstances to make a decision should it be higher. but i'm glad i'm not in a position, like my colleague from minnesota, of defending $600 to $700 an hour for attorney fees for more frivolous environmental laul lawsuits. that make it -- lawsuits. that make it difficult to farm ranch, mine, and do timber operations which are very desperately needed. especially with the conditions we have in california. of our forests as well as the drought situation, trying to get work done to address that. so when the people watch what
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goes on here, they need to be cognizant that there's those in the government who would rather pay $600 to $700 an hour for more frivolous environmental lawsuits while they suffer from drought and burning forests. with that i think is amendment is very much in order because we see that these limits aren't being followed at all. the $125 limit. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is oned amendment offered by the gentleman from -- is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. ms. mccollum: mr. chair. the chair: the gentlelady from minnesota. ms. mccollum: i would please request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from louisiana seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by
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mr. graves of louisiana. at the end of the bill insert after the last section, proceedings for title the following, section none of the funds provided in this act may be used in contravention of 33 united states code 1319 with respect to a permit issued or required to be issued to the u.s. army corps of engineers, pursuant to 33 united states code 1344, for discharges of dredged or fill material impacting wetlands. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 33, the gentleman from louisiana and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from louisiana. mr. graves: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. chairman, americans are tired of two standards. the standard whereby private citizens are treated one way and a standard whereby the federal government is treat -- treats them self an entirely different way. nothing is more apparent in this situation than where the u.s. army corps of engineers
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grants themselves one way of complying with wetlands regulations, yet they impose an entirely different standard upon our private citizens. the u.s. army corps of engineers and the e.p.a. go out and purport to be defenders of wetlands stewards, good stewards of our wetlands. yet the greatest cause of wetlands loss in the united states is actually caused by the historic, current and future actions of the u.s. army corps of engineers. in our home state of louisiana, we've lost over 1,900 square miles of our coast. over 1,900 square miles has been caused by the management or the mismanagement by the u.s. army corps of engineers of our coastal resources and the river resources, particularly the mississippi river. mr. chairman, what this amendment does is it simply requires that the u.s. army corps of engineers comply with the same standards as anybody else. if there are permits required, they have to get them.
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they can no longer mismanage our coastal resources. this isn't a parochial issue. this is an issue whereby the nation truly benefits from this. this is the area where fisheries production occurs, where energy production occurs. we literally power this nation's economy and we feed american families. and so this wetlands loss that we're experiencing increases the vulnerability of our coastal communities in south louisiana and creases the demands upon fema and other agencies in response to disasters. i reserve. mr. calvert: if the gentleman would yield, i would urge adoption of the gentleman's amendment and i yield back to the gentleman. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time? mr. graves: i reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. does anyone seek time in opposition? the gentleman from louisiana is recognized. mr. graves: i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from louisiana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. pery of pennsylvania. at the end of the bill before the short title, insert the following. section, none of the funds made available by this act may be used -- mr. perry: i ask unanimous consent to dispense with the reading. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection? without objection. pursuant to house resolution 333, the gentleman from pennsylvania and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. perry: i yield myself as much time as i might consume. i thank the chairman of the committee for allowing me to offer this amendment. it provides -- it prevents the department of interior from
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competing with our local job creators in the use of u.a.f.'s. unmanned aerial systems for land surveying, mapping, imaging and remote sensing data activities. there is concern that agencies the usgs and bureau of land management are requiring the u.a.s. and utilizing them on projects that can be accomplished by the private sector. we have no problem with them using them, we have no problem with them using for forest fires and those type of things, emergency situations, but where local businesses can do this work, we think that it's unfair for the government to take that work away. having the department compete with local employers results in a loss of business for private, geospatial firms under contract to other federal mapping agencies. the government is actually getting a leg up on private market by obtaining certificates of authorization or c.o.a.'s and performing services with u.a.f.'s that are otherwise commercial in nature. current will you and regular lying permits private citizens
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and firms to operate u.a.f.'s for a hobby. however, there is no effective enforcement to prevent the government abuse of such authority for commercial pumps. the fact that the government agencies can operate a u.a.f. while private sector cannot as freely or timely gain air space access has created anuneven playing field. allowing the department of the interior to compete with free market use of u.a.s. is not only poor steward shch taxpayer money and inefficient use of resources, but results in the government duplicating and directly competing with private interprice. this marketplace this is a $73 billion marketplace, mr. speaker. it drives more than $1 trillion in economic activity, more than $500,000 american jobs are related to the collection, storage and dissemination of imagery and geospatial data. another $5.3 million -- 5.3
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million citizens utilize such data and as much as 90% of the government's information has a geospatial information component, up to 0% of the information managed by business is connected to a specific location. the geospatial marketplace is identified by the department of labor as one of just 14 high gross sectors in the united states work force. with that i urge support of this amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentlelady from minnesota seek reck knick? -- recognition? ms. mccollum: i rise in opposition. the department of interior and the u.s. geological survey have been used unmanned aircraft to compliment conventional satellite-based remote sensing. using remote sensing via unmanned aircraft, it makes sense. it allows for the rapid collection of data and allows for the department to get a closer look at natural disasters as they develop. the department and usgs are using unmanned aircraft to
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monitor wildfires monitor river bank erosion detect and locate coal steam fires consult water fall surveys and inspect abandoned mines. it's clearly, you know available to everyone that this technology offers a real public safety benefit. so it makes no sense to ham string the department when the technology can save lives and the survey can, you know monitor dangerous natural events. now, the way that the amendment is written, and i'm all for the private sector being able to do things, and that's in the new amendment, that the private sector, you know, is not affected by this amendment, but at the private sector currently isn't operating in this space looking at abandoned mines or looking at wildfires and we need to do something right away , your amendment would prohibit
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the federal government from using equipment it would have and be able to launch up and look at something in realtime. i don't think that was the total intention of your amendment. but because, even though you worked in the redraft to make sure that you protected the contractors, and i'm glad you did that, i don't know where that leaves us in times of emergency when there isn't a contractor available because you have an all-out prohibition. so for that reason, mr. chair, i oppose the amendment and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman is recognized. mr. perry: i appreciate the gentlelady's comments. first of all, i did state that fire fighting or fire observation would not be included and indeed it is not writ innocent amendment. it's very simple -- written in the amendment. it's very specific. for emergency purposes if need be, the interior can still, whether it uses its own or one of the other myriad agencies that have the vehicles, it still has the ability to do
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that. but i would also remind the gentlelady that there are plenty of ambulance suradvances and other emergency services for contract hire out there in our communities that perform emergency services every hour of the day, every day of the year. that fact notwithstanding, the private industry does provide all the other things that the agency is currently embarking on upon its own, on its own. and leaving the private sector out. a friend just call me today and asked me because i'm a helicopter pilot in the army, if we could put his air conditioning unit on a roof and i said absolutely not. the army doesn't do what the civilian world does. for good reason. we want the civilians out there doing those things. we don't want to compete as the federal government. but in this characters the department of interior is competing directly and will continue to do so if allowed to do so. unless prohibited. they can write contracts and they can have somebody on-call. if there's an emergency situation, they can have a contractor on-call to do that.
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and they should. and with that i reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mccollum: i thank the gentleman. i think that this is a great discussion we're having. but i don't think the discussion necessarily belongs on the appropriation bill. it belongs in the policy committee. so that all the questions that i have and the concerns that you have can be addressed and thoughtfully written into a piece of legislation. there's just some places in rural parts of the united states, and i come from a state that's both urban, suburban and very, very rural, up in the north shore, where private contractors just don't go or the ability of getting a hold of one isn't there. and sometimes you have to have some federal redundancy in the system to get out there and do it. you also have used a couple of temples and discriminations that i don't have any statutory language in front of me. so where i think the gentleman
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might have a very good idea, bills that we're working on in the promingses process, when we start -- appropriations process, when we start giving in to writing technical policy or start with the new legislation, you have a great proponent, i hear them all the time in the defense committee and the chairman of the subare subcommittee saying that the federal government shouldn't be doing what the private sector can do, we should not be doing this legislation for the reasons i mentioned. we just don't have all the facts in front of it and it's not the role of the interior appropriations bill to do policy. so i'm going to continue to object to the amendment at this time but i look forward in a policy situation working with the gentleman and with that i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the gentleman is recognized. mr. perry: i appreciate the gentlelady's reservations and opposition for the reasons i so stated and i respect them but i feel this is the correct place to limit in the appropriations to make sure that the private sector can compete effectively
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and is allowed to do so and doesn't have to compete against the federal government with all the provisions it has at its hands to undermine their ability to be effective and competitive. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from pennsylvania. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. . for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? >> i move -- mr. calvert: i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the -- that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accord -- accordingly, the committee rises.

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