Senate Democrats

The America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010

Summary

The federal government shares responsibility with state, local, and private organizations to help protect our nation’s natural resources for current and future generations. In order to help fulfill that responsibility, the 110th Congress passed and President Bush signed into law the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008.  Furthermore, at the beginning of 111th Congress, Congress passed and President Obama signed into law the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009.  Each piece of legislation was passed by both houses of Congress with overwhelming bipartisan support.

Throughout the 111th Congress, committees in the Senate and the House of Representatives have worked to protect the nation’s environment and natural resources by favorably reporting bipartisan ocean, wildlife, tribal, and natural resource bills to the Senate floor.  Recently, Senator Reid announced that the Senate could consider natural resources legislation before the end of the 111th Congress.

As Senate Majority Leader, Senator Reid combined many of the bipartisan and bicameral pieces of legislation that have been favorably reported by those committees into one bill, as a Senate Amendment to S.303.  Nearly all of the bills contained in the Senate Amendment to S.303 have already been passed by the House of Representatives with bipartisan support or enjoy strong bipartisan support in both the House and Senate. 

Major Provisions

Division A—National Park Service Authorization

Title I of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would designate the Valles Caldera National Preserve in New Mexico as a unit of the National Park System.

Title I of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would establish the Waco Mammoth National Monument in Texas as a unit of the National Park Service.

Title II of Division A would authorize the transfer of 4,070 acres of land from the Forest Service to the National Park Service to expand the boundaries of the Oregon Caves National Monument.

Title II of Division A would modify the boundary of the Minuteman Missile National Historic Site by authorizing the Secretary of Interior to transfer 25 acres of Buffalo Gap National Grasslands from the Forest Service to the Minuteman Missile National Historic Site and to establish a visitor center and administrative facility at the site near Philip, South Dakota.

Title II of Division A would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to establish a joint partnership with the Porter County Convention, Recreation and Visitor Commission with regard to the use of the Dorothy Buell Memorial Visitor Center as a visitor center for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.  The legislation would also allow the Secretary to plan, design, construct, and install exhibits in the Center related to the use and management of the resources at the Lakeshore and use park staff from the Lakeshore in the Center to provide visitor information and education.

Title II of Division A would authorize the National Park Service to stock fish in lakes in North Cascades National Park, Ross Lake National Recreation Area, and Lake Chelan National Recreation Area in Washington State.

Title II of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would expand the area of the Petersburg National Battlefield in Virginia by more than 7,000 acres.

Title of Division A would expand the boundaries of the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania to include a small parcel of land containing the newly refurbished Gettysburg Train Station and would accept a donation from the Gettysburg Foundation consisting of a 45-acre tract of land along Plum Run in Cumberland Township.

Title II of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize the National Park Service to enter into a cooperative agreement with Northwestern State University of house the curatorial collection Cane River National Heritage Area in the State of Louisiana.

Title III of Division A would require the National Park Service to study the suitability and feasibility of designating the New Philadelphia, Illinois archaeological site and surrounding lands in Illinois as a unit of the National Parks System.

Title III of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would requirethe National Park Service to study whether the General of the Army, George Catlett Marshall National Historic Site at home Dodona Manor and gardens in Leesburg, Virginia should become a National Park System unit.

Title III of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize theNational Park Service to study the suitability and feasibility of adding the Heart Mountain Relocation Center, in the state of Wyoming, as a National Park System unit.

Title III of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize the National Park Service to study the suitability and feasibility of designating the Colonel Charles Young Home in Xenia, Ohio, as a unit of the National Park System.

Title III of Division A would direct the Secretary of the Interior to study ways of protecting and interpreting sites related to the civil rights movement in the United States.

Title III Division A would direct the National Park Service (NPS), to complete a special resource study to determine the suitability and feasibility of designating Camp Hale, in Colorado, as a National Park System unit.

Title IV of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize the National Mall Liberty Fund D.C., a non-profit organization based in the District of Columbia, to construct a memorial on Federal land in the District of Columbia to honor the 5,000 slaves and free black persons who served as soldiers or provided civilian assistance during the American Revolution.

Title V of Division A would amend the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 to include battlefield sites associated with the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 among the sites authorized to receive funding under the American Battlefield Protection Program.

Title V of Division A of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize the National Park System Advisory Board through fiscal year 2020 and the National Park Service Concessions Management Advisory Board through fiscal year 2019 make modifications to the procedures of the National Park Service.

Division B—National Wilderness Preservation System

Title XX of Division B would designate approximately 240,000 acres of land in New Mexico as the Organ Mountains Wilderness, Aden Lava Flow Wilderness, Potrillo Mountains Wilderness, Cinder Cone Wilderness, Whitethorn Wilderness, Robledo Mountains Wilderness, Broad Canyon Wilderness, and Sierra de las Uvas Wilderness.  The bill would also establish the Organ Mountains National Conservation Area, and the Desert Peaks National Conservation Area.

Title XXI of Division B of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would designate 22,173 acres of land in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest as wilderness. The legislation would also designate a 27.4-mile segment of the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River and the entire Pratt River as additions to the Wild and Scenic River System.  The bill would designate the Pratt River and 6.4 miles of the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River as ‘wild’ and would designate the remaining 21 miles of the Snoqualmie as ‘scenic.’

Title XXII of Division B of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would add 30,540 acres of wilderness from land currently managed by the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management to be designated as the Devil's Staircase Wilderness.  The legislation would also add 14.6 miles of wild and scenic rivers along Franklin and Wasson Creek.

Title XXIII of Division B of theAmerica’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to issue a special use authorization for the owners of water storage, transport, or diversion facilities located on National Forest System land in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness and the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness in Idaho.

Division C—Forest Service Authorizations

Title XXX of Division C would establish the 4,726-acre Chimney Rock National Monument in the San Juan National Forest in southwest Colorado.

Title XXXI of Division C would withdraw federally owned lands and interests in the North Fork Flathead Watershed in Montana from all forms of location, entry, and patent under the mining laws and disposition under all laws relating to mineral or geothermal leasing.

Title XXXII of Division C of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would provide for the exchange about five acres of federal land for a similar amount of acreage owned by the Sugar Loaf Fire Protection District of Boulder, Colorado.

Title XXXII of Division C of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would direct the Secretary of Agriculture to convey up to two acres of National Forest System land to the town of Alta, Utah for public purposes.

Title XXXII of Division C would direct the Secretary of Agriculture to convey to the town of Mantua, Utah, certain parcels of National Forest System land in the Wasatch-Cache National Forest.

Title XXXII of  Division C of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would provide for the exchange of approximately 82 acres of National Forest System land in the Mendocino National Forest for approximately 160 acres of land owned by Solano County, California.

Title XXXII of Division C would direct the Forest Service to convey about one acre of land in Oregon to the city of Wallowa.

Title XXXII of Division C would make technical corrections to the T’uf Shur Bien Preservation Trust Area Act to help facilitate the land transfers called for by the land settlement with the Sandia Pueblo.

Title XXXIII of Division C would amendthe National Forest Ski Area Permit Act of 1986 to clarify the authority of the Secretary of Agriculture regarding additional recreational uses of National Forest System land that are subject to ski area permits.

Title XXXIII of Division C of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would help to mitigate the hazards posed by landscape-scale epidemics insect infestations and diseases in the West.  The legislation would also authorize cooperative agreements and contracts with State agencies to facilitate hazardous fuel reduction and forest restoration projects on adjacent parcels of Federal and non-Federal land.

Title XXXIII of Division C would establish a coordinated avalanche protection program and authorize the appropriation of funds for the Forest Service to provide grants to reduce the risks to the public from avalanches on federal land.

Division D—Department of Interior Authorizations

Title XL of Division D would extend the Federal Land Transaction and Facilitation Act authorization to July 25, 2020, and expand the pool of eligible lands to include any lands identified for disposal as of the date of enactment

Title XLI of Division D of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 wouldauthorize the appropriation of funds for a U.S. Geological Survey program to monitor active volcanoes and to enhance public notification of potentially harmful volcanic activity.

Title XLII of Division D would establish the Connecticut River Grants and Technical Assistance Program in the Department of the Interior to provide grants and technical assistance to state agencies, local governments, non-profit organizations, and private stakeholders in New Hampshire and Vermont to carry out projects for the conservation, restoration, and interpretation of historic and other resources in the upper Connecticut River watershed.

Title XLIII of Division D would amend the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 by clarifying that the balance of un-appropriated amounts collected by States and Indian tribes from abandoned mine lands funds can be used for non-coal reclamation.

Title XLIV of Division D would amend the Public Lands Corps Act of 1993by renaming the Public Lands Corps as the Public Lands Service Corps. The bill would also create a grant program for the establishment of Indian Youth Service Corps to carry out tribal and community priority projects.

Title XLV of Division D would withdraw approximately 17,000 acres of public land within the Nevada National Security Site (formerly known as the Nevada Test Site) for the Department of Energy to use as a Solar Demonstration Zone.

Title XLV of Division D of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would modifythe patent for the Whitefish Point Light Station issued to the Great Lakes Shipwreck Historical Society in Chippewa County, Michigan.

Title XLVI of Division D would implement a Federal Court ordered settlement protecting desert tortoise and other habitat by validating land patents in Clark and Lincoln Counties, Nevada.

Title XLVI of Division D would provide a permanent authorization for the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Division E—National Heritage Areas

Title L of Division E of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would establish theSusquehanna Gateway National Heritage Area in Pennsylvania.  The legislation would designate the Lancaster-York Heritage Region as the management entity for the Area and require the Lancaster-York Heritage Region to prepare and submit a management plan for the area.

Title LI of Division E would establish the Alabama Black Belt National Heritage Area in Alabama.  The Black Belt is a region of the southeastern United States that is known for its fertile soil.  The bill would designate the Center for the Study of the Black Belt at the University of West Alabama as the management entity for the proposed heritage area and would authorize the appropriation of funds for financial assistance to the center and other eligible entities over the next 15 years.

Division F—Bureau of Land Management Authorizations

Title LX of Division F of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would designate 13,420 acres of land as the Cerro del Yuta Wilderness and 8,000 acres of land as the Rio San Antonio Wilderness in New Mexico.  The bill would also establish the 235,980 acre Rio Grande del Norte National Conservation Area.

Title LX of Division F of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize the Secretary of the Interior, through the Director of the Bureau of Land Management, to purchase the Gold Hill Ranch in Coloma, California – the location of the founding of Wakamatsu Tea and Silk Farm Colony in 1869.  The legislation instructs that the acquisition of the Gold Hill Ranch be from willing sellers with donated or appropriated funds.

Title LX of Division F of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would include approximately two acres of land in Orange County within the existing California Coastal National Monument.

Title LXI of Division F of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would conveyabout 18,000 acres of land located in western Alaska to the Bering Straits Native Corporation and the State of Alaska in satisfaction of claims made by those parties under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act and the Alaska Statehood Act.

Title LXI of Division F wouldconvey over 2,000 acres of land to meet the future needs of colleges and universities in the Nevada System of Higher Education.

Title LXI of Division F of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would direct the Bureau of Land Management to convey about 910 acres of land in Oregon to either the City of La Pine or Deschutes County.

Title LXII of Division F of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would withdraw approximately 640 acres of land in Clark County, Nevada from mining, mineral, and geothermal laws.

Division G—Rivers and Trails

Title LXX of Division G would add approximately 15.1 miles of the Molalla River and 6.2 miles of the Table Rock Fork of the Molalla River in Oregon as recreational components of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System.

Title LXX of Division G of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would designate a 14.3 mile segment at the headwaters of Illabot Creek in Washington as a Wild and Scenic River.

Title LXX of Division G would addnine miles of the White Clay Creek in Delaware and Pennsylvania to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System.

Title LXX of Division G would study a five mile segment of the Elk River in West Virginia for potential addition to the Wild and Scenic Rivers System.

Title LXX of Division G would increase the size of the North Country National Scenic Trail in northeastern Minnesota to 4,600 miles by including existing hiking trails along Lake Superior's north shore and in Superior National Forest and Chippewa National Forest.

Division H—Water and Hydropower Authorizations

Title LXXX of Division H would authorize limited federal financial assistance for the planning, design and construction of Phase II of the Magna Water District water reuse and groundwater recharge project.

Title LXXX of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would amend the Reclamation Wastewater and Groundwater Study and Facilities Act to authorize the Secretary of the Interior, in coordination with certain municipalities, to design, plan, and construct recycled water distribution systems in California.

Title LXXX of Division H wouldincrease the amount authorized to be appropriated for a water recycling project at the Calleguas Municipal Water District in California to enable the Bureau of Reclamation to complete a component of that project.

Title LXXX of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would amend the Reclamation Wastewater and Groundwater Study and Facilities Actto authorize the Secretary of the Interior to participate in design, planning, and construction of permanent facilities to reclaim and reuse water in the City of Hermiston, Oregon.

Title LXXX of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would help facilitate voluntary transfers of water supplies between certain users of the Central Valley Project in California.

Title LXXX of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would clarify theadministrative jurisdiction of the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture with respect to certain Federal land near the C.C. Cragin Dam and Reservoir in the State of Arizona.

Title LXXX of Division H wouldrequire the Secretary of the Interior to maintain the structural integrity of the Leadville Mine Drainage Tunnel, located one mile north of Leadville, Colorado.

Title LXXX of Division H would extend the authority of the Secretary of the Interior to spend proceeds collected by the Western Area Power Administration for fish recovery programs in the Upper Colorado and San Juan River Basins.

Title LXXXI of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would require the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to reinstate the license for the proposed 1.5-megawatt Hydroelectric Project No. 12063 in Lincoln County, Idaho and grant a three-year extension to the commencement of construction deadline.

Title LXXXI of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would require the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to reinstate the license for the proposed 1.5-megawatt Hydroelectric Project No. 12423 in Lincoln County, Idaho and grant a three-year extension to the commencement of construction deadline.

Title LXXXI of Division H would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to facilitate the development of hydroelectric power on the Diamond Fork System of the Central Utah Project.

Title LXXXI of Division H would amend the Hoover Power Plant Act of 1984 by increasing the amount of electricity to be marketed by the Western Area Power Administration and would allocate much of the dam's currently unallocated electricity to Native American Indian tribes and other entities.  The revised allocations would remain in effect from 2017 through 2067.

Title LXXXII of Division H would authorize the Uintah Water Conservancy District in Utah to prepay the net present value of certain amounts the district owes to the U.S. Treasury for its share of the cost to build the Jensen Unit of the Central Utah Project.

Title LXXXII of Division H of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would direct the Bureau of Reclamation, to complete a feasibility study for domestic, commercial, municipal, industrial, and irrigation water supply for the Tule River Tribe of the Tule River Reservation, California.

Title LXXXII of Division H would direct the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study of water resources in the Rialto-Colton Basin in California in order to understand how to  most effectively remediate existing percholorate groundwater contamination in the area.

Division I—Insular Areas

Division I of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would convey to the government of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands the submerged lands surrounding the islands extending outward three geographical miles from the coastline.

Division J—Wildlife and Habitat Conservation

Subtitle A of Subtitle C of Division J would create the National Fish Habitat Board and establish procedures to implement the goals of the 2006 National Fish Habitat Action Plan – a comprehensive framework developed by non-federal stakeholders in cooperation with local, state, and Federal officials to conserve fish species.  The legislation would also authorize funding for projects that conserve fish habitat and implement the action plan. 

Subtitle B of Subtitle C of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize the Marine Turtle Conservation Act and authorize appropriation of funds through 2016 to provide grants for projects designed to conserve, protect and recover threatened and endangered marine turtle populations. 

Subtitle C of  Subtitle C of Division J would reauthorize the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act through fiscal year 2016.  This Act, which was originally passed in 2000, encourages habitat protection, education, researching, monitoring, and capacity building to provide for the long-term protection of neo-tropical migratory birds, which are critically important multi-billion dollar wildlife watching industry.

Subtitle D of Subtitle C of Division J would authorize the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, to conduct a Joint Venture Program to protect, restore, enhance, and manage migratory bird populations, their habitats, and critical ecosystems, through voluntary actions on public and private lands.

Subtitle E of Subtitle C of Division J of America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would require the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to establish a grant program to protect and conserve wild cranes and their habitat.  The act would authorize the appropriation of funds to provide financial assistance to eligible government agencies, international or foreign organizations, and private entities engaged in such activities.

Subtitle F of Subtitle C of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would require the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to establish a grant program to protect and conserve rare species of great cats and canids and authorizes appropriations of funds through 2016.

Subtitle G of Subtitle C of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize the appropriation of funds for the junior duck stamp program through fiscal year 2016.  More than 28,000 students participate in the Nationwide Junior Duck Stamp art contest each year, and the winning entry is reproduced as the annual Junior Duck Stamp.  Proceeds from the sale of these stamps are used to support conservation education programs, awards, and scholarships of Junior Duck Stamp Program participants.

Subtitle A of Subtitle CI of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to provide financial assistance to Delaware, Louisiana, North Carolina, Maryland, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington State for the control or eradication of South American nutria, which can cause significant damage to natural habitats and economically important crops.  The bill also would provide assistance for the restoration of marshlands damaged by this invasive species.

Subtitle A of Subtitle CII of Division J would authorize appropriations for the existing Gulf of Mexico Program Office within the Environmental Protection Agency.  This office is responsible for supporting efforts to monitor, restore, and protect the water quality and marine ecosystems of the Gulf of Mexico.

Subtitle B of Subtitle CII of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 wouldamend the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act of 2000 to authorize appropriations funds to combat invasive species, improve water clarity, reduce the threat of catastrophic wildfire, and restore the environment of the Lake Tahoe Basin. 

Subtitle C of Subtitle CII of Division J wouldamend the Clean Water Act to reauthorize the National Estuary Program through 2016 and enhance transparency of and accountability for participating estuary programs.

Subtitle D of Subtitle CII of Division J would authorize funding to implement high-priority restoration efforts outlined in the Puget Sound comprehensive conservation and management plan known as the Puget Sound Action Agenda. 

Subtitle E of Subtitle CII of Division J would establish a Columbia Basin Restoration Program within the EPA toreduce toxic contamination in the Columbia River.  The bill would authorize funding to assist stakeholders – including state and local agencies, tribal governments, industry, landowners, and environmental organizations – to coordinate and implement voluntary toxic reduction activities throughout the basin and the Flathead River sub-basin.

Subtitle F of Subtitle CII of Division J would authorize funds for the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes, streamline Great Lakes governance and reauthorize the appropriation of funds to reclaim parts of the Great Lakes where contamination has settled into lake-bottom sediment.

Subtitle G of Subtitle CII of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize through 2016 two programs to protect the water quality and restore the shore of the Long Island Sound as well as establish additional, targeted resources for wastewater infrastructure improvements in each of the watershed states that have committed to improving water quality in the Sound.

Subtitle H of Subtitle CII of Division J wouldsupport efforts by state and local governments in the Chesapeake Bay Basin to restore its water quality and its tidal segments in order to sustain native fish and wildlife.

Subtitle I of Subtitle CII of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would establish a grant program to restore the San Francisco Bay, which is one of the largest estuaries on the West Coast, home to scores of threatened and endangered species of wildlife, and an important contributor to the regional, state and national economies.  The bill would support implementation of goals outlined in the locally-developed comprehensive conservation and management plan for the San Francisco Bay estuary. 

Subtitle A of Subtitle CIII of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize agrants program to support state and local governments’ efforts to monitor coastal water quality around the nation’s beaches, which are important tourist destinations and critical to many local economies. The bill would also help to protect public health by notifying the public when beach water does not meet established standards.  This legislation would modify testing methods for water-borne pathogens and other contaminates in costal recreation waters. 

Subtitle B of Subtitle CIII of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would amendthe Chesapeake Bay Initiative Act of 1998 to make permanent the authorization of appropriations for conservation efforts in the Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrails Network. 

Subtitle C of Subtitle CIII of Division J would reauthorize the U.S. Geological Survey to provide grants to colleges and universities to support research aimed at increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of water treatment systems.  Additionally, the bill would reauthorize appropriations for grants to fund research into regional or interstate water issues.

Subtitle I of Subtitle CIV of Division J of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would direct the General Services Administration to select and sell a piece of federal property located in Washington, D.C., to the National Women's History Museum, Inc.  (a non-profit corporation) to develop a National Women’s History Museum.

Division K—Oceans and Fisheries

Title CXI of Division K of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would expand Federal efforts to protect and restore the healthiest remaining salmon strongholds in North America.  The legislation would authorize funds to establish a comprehensive, science-based strategy for the conservation of wild salmon.

Title CXII of Division K would close a loophole in the Magnuson-Stevens Act to apply shark finning prohibitions and penalties not only to fishing vessels, but any ship involved in the transfer shark fins at sea.

Title CXIII of Division K would reauthorize funding for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) programs that rescue and rehabilitate marine mammals such as whales that become stranded or entangled.

Title CXIV of Division K of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would authorize funds for a sea otter research and recovery program along the southern coast of California.  The legislation would augment current authorized funding levels that have not been adequate to support efforts to reduce or eliminate human and environmental factors impacting sea otter populations.

Title CXV of Division K of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would establish uniform enforcement policies and procedures for federal statutes that regulate commercial fishing.  The legislation would also authorize funding for programs that improve law enforcement efforts related to international fisheries.

Title CXVI of Division K would add approximately 1,521 square nautical miles to the Gulf of the Farallones Sanctuary and 354 square nautical miles to the Cordell Bank Sanctuary.  This title would also strengthen protections for and provide public education regarding the ecological value and national importance of those marine environments.

Title CXVII of Division K would extend the boundaries of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary to include 3,722 square miles of Lake Huron and 225 miles of shoreline off Alcona, Alpena, and Presque Isle Counties in Michigan.  This expansion would protect more than 200 additional shipwrecks, traditional commercial fishing sites, historic docks, and underwater archaeological sites.

Title CXVIII of Division K of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize the Northwest Straits Marine Conservation Initiative Act with minor modifications, including codification of the composition and goals of the Northwest Straits Advisory Commission.

Title CXIX of Division K of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would reauthorize and amend the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act by allowing for appropriations of fundsfor NOAA efforts to address and mitigate the effects of harmful algal blooms and aquatic hypoxia.  The legislation would also encourage greater collaboration among State and Federal agencies tasked with studying and finding solutions for harmful algal blooms and hypoxia.

Title CXXI of Division K of the America’s Great Outdoors Act of 2010 would increase collaboration between the various programs and activities at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to further the agency's coastal and marine resource stewardship mission.   The bill authorizes appropriations for 2011-2014 to support stewardship and related activities carried out by the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office and would permit the office to accept donations of funds, property, and services for use in implementing its programs.

Title CXII of Division K would authorize new appropriations for coral reef programs, establish new protections for coral reefs, and extend those protections to reefs in all U.S. waters.

Division L—Indian Homelands and Trust Land

Title CXXXII of Division L would settle pending land claim disputes along the Blackfoot River in eastern Idaho.

Division M—Budgetary Effects

Division M states that the budgetary effects of this Act, for the purpose of complying with the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go-Act of 2010, shall be determined by reference to the latest statement titled “Budgetary Effects of PAYGO Legislation” for this Act.

Legislative History

Senator Reid introduced the America’s Great Outdoors Act on December 17, 2010.

Expected Amendments

The DPC will distribute information on amendments as it becomes available to staff listservs.

Administration Position

At the time of publication, the Administration had not released a Statement of Administration Policy on theAmerica’s Great Outdoors Act.

Resources

Congressional Research Service, “Wilderness Overview and Statistics,” January 8, 2009, available here.

Congressional Research Service, “Federal Land Management Agencies: Background on Land and Resources Management,” available here.

Democratic Policy Committee, “The Bipartisan Environmental Accomplishments of the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009,” available here.

Bookmark and Share