Criticism of the House Appropriations Committee’s Interior subcommittee was fairly easy to find after the subcommittee’s approval yesterday (June 20) of a bill that would cut the Fish and Wildlife Service budget by $317 million – or 21 percent – below the current year. According to the House Approps news release:
The subcommittee bill would reduce spending in the Resource Management account by 15 percent, while “maintaining funding for programs such as invasive species and mitigation fish hatcheries. The bill also cuts several unauthorized FWS programs by up to 50 percent.
The committee report does not appear to be available yet. The report is the textual explanation of the bill, whose section on the Fish and Wildlife Service’s Resource Management budget is reprinted below.
The House news release is here: (Excerpt: “ ‘This bill cuts spending on programs by more than a billion dollars, and prevents the EPA and other federal bureaucracies from stepping out of their lane and stifling our economic recovery. At the same time, it funds programs that are necessary and important to the American people, including the maintenance of national parks, wildfire fighting and prevention efforts, and the stewardship of the nation’s vast natural resources and federal lands,’ House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers said.”)
Here’s the language from the Interior appropriations bill:
UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE
For necessary expenses of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, as authorized by law, and for scientific and economic studies, general administration, and for the performance of other authorized functions related to such resources, $1,040,488,000, to remain available until September 30, 2014, except as otherwise provided herein: Provided, That not to exceed $14,564,000 shall be used for implementing subsections (a), (b), (c), and (e) of section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1533) (except for processing petitions, developing and issuing proposed and final regulations, and taking any other steps to implement actions described in subsection (c)(2)(A), (c)(2)(B)(i), or (c)(2)(B)(ii)), of which not to exceed $4,500,000 shall be used for any activity regarding the designation of critical habitat, pursuant to subsection (a)(3), excluding litigation support, for species listed pursuant to subsection (a)(1) prior to October 1, 2011; of which not to exceed $1,123,000 shall be used for any activity regarding petitions to list species that are indigenous to the United States pursuant to subsections (b)(3)(A) and (b)(3)(B); and, of which not to exceed $1,123,000 shall be used for implementing subsections (a), (b), (c), and (e) of section 4 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1533) for species that are not indigenous to the United States.
For construction, improvement, acquisition, or removal of buildings and other facilities required in the conservation, management, investigation, protection, and utilization of fish and wildlife resources, and the acquisition of lands and interests therein; $17,755,000, to remain available until expended.
For expenses necessary to carry out the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965 (16 U.S.C. 460l– 4 et seq.), including administrative expenses, and for acquisition of land or waters, or interest therein, in accordance with statutory authority applicable to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, $15,047,000, to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund and to remain available until expended, of which, notwithstanding section 7 of such Act (16 U.S.C. 460l–9), not more than $4,000,000 shall be for land conservation partnerships authorized by the Highlands Conservation Act (Public Law 108–421), including not to exceed $160,000 for administrative expenses: Provided, That none of the funds appropriated for specific land acquisition projects may be used to pay for any administrative overhead, planning or other management costs.
COOPERATIVE ENDANGERED SPECIES CONSERVATION FUND
For expenses necessary to carry out section 6 of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.), $14,129,000, to remain available until expended, of which $2,707,000 is to be derived from the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund; and of which $11,422,000 is to be derived from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE FUND
For expenses necessary to implement the Act of October 17, 1978 (16 U.S.C. 715s), $11,958,000.
NORTH AMERICAN WETLANDS CONSERVATION FUND
For expenses necessary to carry out the provisions of the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 4401 et seq.), $22,333,000, to remain available until expended.
NEOTROPICAL MIGRATORY BIRD CONSERVATION
For expenses necessary to carry out the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 6101 et seq.), $1,893,000, to remain available until expended.
MULTINATIONAL SPECIES CONSERVATION FUND
For expenses necessary to carry out the African Elephant Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 4201 et seq.), the Asian Elephant Conservation Act of 1997 (16 U.S.C. 4261 et seq.), the Rhinoceros and Tiger Conservation Act of 1994 (16 U.S.C. 5301 et seq.), the Great Ape Conservation Act of 2000 (16 U.S.C. 6301 et seq.), and the Marine Turtle Conservation Act of 2004 (16 U.S.C. 6601 et seq.), $4,735,000, to remain available until expended.
STATE AND TRIBAL WILDLIFE GRANTS
For wildlife conservation grants to States and to the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, the United States Virgin Islands, the Northern Mariana Islands, American Samoa, and Indian tribes under the provisions of the Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 (16 U.S.C. 742a et seq.) and the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 U.S.C. 661 et seq.), for the development and implementation of programs for the benefit of wildlife and their habitat, including species that are not hunted or fished, $30,662,000, to remain available until expended: Provided, That of the amount provided herein, $2,134,000 is for a competitive grant program for Indian tribes not subject to the remaining provisions of this appropriation: Provided further, That $2,866,000 is for a competitive grant program for States, territories, and other jurisdictions with approved plans, not subject to the remaining provisions of this appropriation: Provided further, That the Secretary shall, after deducting $5,000,000 and administrative expenses, apportion the amount provided herein in the following manner: (1) to the District of Columbia and to the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, each a sum equal to not more than one-half of 1 percent thereof; and (2) to Guam, American Samoa, the United States Virgin Islands, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, each a sum equal to not more than one-fourth of 1 percent thereof: Provided further, That the Secretary shall apportion the remaining amount in the following manner: (1) one-third of which is based on the ratio to which the land area of such State bears to the total land area of all such States; and (2) two-thirds of which is based on the ratio to which the population of such State bears to the total population of all such States: Provided further, That the amounts apportioned under this paragraph shall be adjusted equitably so that no State shall be apportioned a sum which is less than 1 percent of the amount available for apportionment under this paragraph for any fiscal year or more than 5 percent of such amount: Provided further, That the Federal share of planning grants shall not exceed 50 percent of the total costs of such projects and the Federal share of implementation grants shall not exceed 50 percent of the total costs of such projects: Provided further, That the non-Federal share of such projects may not be derived from Federal grant programs.
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service may carry out the operations of Service programs by direct expenditure, contracts, grants, cooperative agreements and reimbursable agreements with public and private entities. Appropriations and funds available to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service shall be available for repair of damage to public roads within and adjacent to reservation areas caused by operations of the Service; options for the purchase of land at not to exceed $1 for each option; facilities incident to such public recreational uses on conservation areas as are consistent with their primary purpose; and the maintenance and improvement of aquaria, buildings, and other facilities under the jurisdiction of the Service and to which the United States has title, and which are used pursuant to law in connection with management, and investigation of fish and wildlife resources: Provided, That notwithstanding 44 U.S.C. 501, the Service may, under cooperative cost sharing and partnership arrangements authorized by law, procure printing services from cooperators in connection with jointly produced publications for which the cooperators share at least one-half the cost of printing either in cash or services and the Service determines the cooperator is capable of meeting accepted quality standards: Provided further, That the Service may accept donated aircraft as replacements for existing aircraft.
- Major Cuts Proposed by House Committee will Severely Impact Endangered Species, say WCS and WWF
- House Interior Department appropriations bill takes axe to conservation programs (Defenders of Wildlife, 6.20.2012)
- House Rolls Back Clean Air, Federal Lands Protections in Latest Assault (NRDC)
- Obama Admin budget page
- Proposed Interior budget (general)
- DOI budget in brief (detailed, from DOI web site)
- DOI budget in brief (from ESWR page, cropped, with blank pages deleted)
- Valuable info link: GPO