H.R. 1348 (103rd): Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor Act of 1994

103rd Congress, 1993–1994. Text as of Sep 09, 1993 (Reported by House Committee).

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HR 1348 RH

Union Calendar No. 127

103d CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1348

[Report No. 103-233]

To establish the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor in the State of Connecticut, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

March 16, 1993

Mr. GEJDENSON (for himself, Mrs. KENNELLY, Ms. DELAURO, and Mrs. JOHNSON of Connecticut) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources

September 9, 1993

Reported with amendments, committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the State of the Union, and ordered to be printed

[Omit the part struck through and insert the part printed in italic]


A BILL

To establish the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor in the State of Connecticut, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ‘Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor Act of 1993’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress finds that:

      (1) The Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley in the State of Connecticut is one of the last unspoiled and undeveloped areas in the Northeastern United States and has remained largely intact, including important aboriginal archaeological sites, excellent water quality, beautiful rural landscapes, architecturally significant mill structures and mill villages, and large acreage of parks and other permanent open space.

      (2) The State of Connecticut ranks last among the 50 States in the amount of federally protected park and open space lands within its borders and lags far behind the other northeastern States in the amount of land set-aside for public recreation.

      (3) The beautiful rural landscapes, scenic vistas and excellent water quality of the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers contain significant undeveloped recreational opportunities for people throughout the United States.

      (4) The Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley is within a 2-hour drive of the major metropolitan areas of New York City, Hartford, Providence, Worcester, Springfield, and Boston. With the President’s Commission on Americans Outdoors reporting that Americans are taking shorter ‘closer-to-home’ vacations, the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley represents important close-by recreational opportunities for significant population.

      (5) The existing mill sites and other structures throughout the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley were instrumental in the development of the industrial revolution.

      (6) The Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley contains a vast number of discovered and unrecovered Native American and colonial archaeological sites significant to the history of North America and the United States.

      (7) The Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley represents one of the last traditional upland farming and mill village communities in the northeastern United States.

      (8) The Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley played a nationally significant role in the cultural evolution of the prewar colonial period. Leading the transformation from Puritan to Yankee, the ‘Great Awakening’ religious revival and early political development leading up to and during the War of Indpendence.

      (9) Many local, regional and State agencies, businesses, and private citizens and the New England Governors’ Conference have expressed an overwhelming desire to combine forces: to work cooperatively to preserve and enhance resources region-wide and better plan for the future.

SEC. 3. ESTABLISHMENT OF QUINEBAUG AND SHETUCKET RIVERS VALLEY NATIONAL HERITAGE CORRIDOR; PURPOSE.

    (a) ESTABLISHMENT- There is hereby established in the State of Connecticut the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor.

    (b) PURPOSE- It is the purpose of this Act to provide a management framework to assist the State of Connecticut, its units of local and regional government and citizens in the development and implementation of integrated cultural, historical, and recreational land resource management programs in order to retain, enhance, and interpret the significant features of the lands, water, and structures of the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley in the State of Connecticut.

SEC. 4. BOUNDARIES AND ADMINISTRATION.

    (a) BOUNDARIES- The Boundaries of the Corridor shall include the towns of Ashford, Brooklyn, Canterbury, Chaplin, Coventry, Eastford, Franklin, Griswold, Hampton, Killingly, Lebanon, Lisbon, Mansfield, Norwich, Plainfield, Pomfret, Preston, Putnam, Scotland, Sprague, Sterling, Thompson, Voluntown, Windham, and Woodstock. As soon as practical after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior shall publish in the Federal Register a detailed description and map of boundaries established under this subsection.

    (b) ADMINISTRATION- The Corridor shall be administered in accordance with the provisions of this Act.

SEC. 5. QUINEBAUG AND SHETUCKET RIVERS VALLEY NATIONAL HERITAGE CORRIDOR COMMISSION.

    (a) ESTABLISHMENT- There is hereby established within the Department of the Interior the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission (referred to in this Act as the ‘Commission’). The Commission shall assist appropriate Federal, State, regional planning organizations, and local authorities in the development and implementation of an integrated resource management plan for the lands and water as specified in section 3.

    (b) MEMBERSHIP- The Commission shall be comprised of 19 members appointed not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act as follows:

      (1) The Director of the National Park Service ex officio (or his delegate).

      (2) 3 individuals nominated by the Governor and appointed by the Secretary, who shall be--

        [Struck out->] (A) the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, or a person representing the interests of the Commissioner; [<-Struck out]

        [Struck out->] (B) the Chairman of the Connecticut Historical Commission or a person representing the interests of the Chairman, and [<-Struck out]

        [Struck out->] (C) the Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Economic Development or a person representing the interests of the Commissioner; [<-Struck out]

        (A) a person representing the interests of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection;

        (B) a person representing the interests of the Connecticut Historical Commission;

        (C) a person representing the interests of the Connecticut Department of Economic Development;

      (3) 6 individuals representing the interests of local government or regional planning organizations from Connecticut appointed by the Secretary after receiving recommendations from the Governor, of whom, 3 shall be representatives of the 3 regional planning organizations within the Corridor region and 3 shall be local elected officials from the region; and

      (4) 9 individuals from the general public, who are citizens of the State of Connecticut, appointed by the Secretary, after receiving recommendations from the Governor, representing conservation, business, tourism, and recreational interests.

    A vacancy in the Commission shall be filled in the manner in which the original appointments were made.

    (c) TERMS- (1) Members of the Commission shall be appointed for terms of 3 years and may be reappointed.

    (2) Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring before the expiration of the term for which his predecessor was appointed shall be appointed only for the remainder of such term. Any member of the Commission appointed for a definite term may serve after the expiration of his term until his successor has taken office.

    (d) COMPENSATION- Members of the Commission shall receive no pay on account of their service on the Commission but while away from their homes or regular places of business in the performance of services for the Commission, members of the Commission shall be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, in the same manner as persons employed intermittently in the Government service are allowed expenses under section 5703 of title 5, United State Code.

    (e) CHAIRPERSON- The Chairperson of the Commission shall be elected by the members of the Commission.

    (f) QUORUM- (1) 8 members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum, but a lesser number may hold hearings.

    (2) The affirmative vote of not less than 10 members of the Commission shall be required to approve the budget of the Commission.

    (g) MEETINGS- The Commission shall hold its first meeting not later than 90 days after the date on which its members are appointed, and shall meet at least quarterly at the call of the chairperson or 10 of its members. Meetings of the Commission shall be subject to section 552(b) of title 5, United States Code (relating to open meetings).

    (h) PROXY- Any member of the Commission may vote by means of a signed proxy exercised by another member of the Commission, but any member so voting shall not be considered present for purposes of establishing a quorum.

SEC. 6. STAFF OF THE COMMISSION.

    (a) IN GENERAL- (1) The Commission shall have the power to appoint and fix compensation of such staff as may be necessary to carry out its duties.

    (2) Staff appointed by the Commission--

      (A) shall be appointed subject to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service; and

      (B) shall be paid in accordance with provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates.

    (b) EXPERTS AND CONSULTANTS- Subject to such rules as may be adopted by the Commission, the Commission may procure temporary and intermittent services to the same extent as is authorized by section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, but at rates determined by the Commission to be reasonable.

    (c) STAFF OF OTHER AGENCIES- (1) Upon request of the Commission, the head of any Federal agency may detail, on a reimbursable basis, any of the personnel of such agency to the Commission to assist the Commission in carrying out the Commission’s duties.

    (2) The Commission may accept the service of personnel detailed from the State, any political subdivision and regional planning organizations, and may reimburse the State, political subdivision, and regional planning organizations for those services.

SEC. 7. POWERS OF COMMISSION.

    (a) HEARINGS- (1) The Commission may, for the purposes of carrying out this Act, hold hearings, sit and act at such times and places, take such testimony, and receive such evidence, as the Commission considers appropriate.

    (2) The Commission may not issue subpoenas or exercise any subpoena authority.

    (b) POWERS OF MEMBERS AND AGENTS- Any member or agent of the Commission, if so authorized by the Commission, may take any action which the Commission is authorized to take by this Act.

    (c) ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPORT SERVICES- The Administrator of the General Services Administration shall provide to the Commission on a reimbursable basis, such administrative support services as the Commission may request.

    (d) MAILS- The Commission may use the United States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions as other departments and other agencies of the United States.

    (e) USE OF FUNDS TO OBTAIN MONEY- The Commission may use its funds to obtain money from any source under any program or law requiring the recipient of such money to make a contribution in order to receive such money.

    (f) GIFTS- [Struck out->] (1) [<-Struck out] Except as provided in subsection (g)(2)(B), the Commission may, for purposes of carrying out its duties, seek, accept, and dispose of gifts, bequests, or donations of money, personal property, or services, received from any source: Provided, That such gifts are used for public purposes.

    [Struck out->] (2) For purposes of section 170(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, any gift to the Commission shall be deemed as a gift to the United States. [<-Struck out]

    (g) ACQUISITION OF REAL PROPERTY- (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) and except with respect to any leasing of facilities under subsection (c), the Commission may not acquire any real property or interest in real property.

    (2) Subject to paragraph (3), the Commission may acquire real property or interest in real property in the Corridor--

      (A) by gift or devise; or

      (B) by purchase from a willing seller with money that was given, appropriated, or bequeathed to the Commission on the condition that such money would be used to purchase real property, or interest in real property, in the Corridor.

    (3) Any real property or interest in real property acquired by the Commission under paragraph (2) shall be conveyed by the Commission to an appropriate public or private land management agency, as determined by the Commission. Any such conveyance shall be made--

      (A) as soon as practicable after such acquisition;

      (B) without consideration; and

      (C) on the condition that the real property or interest in real property so conveyed is used for public purposes.

    (h) COOPERATIVE AGREEMENTS- For purposes of carrying out the plan, the Commission may enter into cooperative agreements with the State of Connecticut, with any political subdivision, or with any person or organization. Any such cooperative agreement shall, at a minimum, establish procedures for providing notice to the Commission of any action proposed by the State, such political subdivision, or such person which may affect implementation of the plan referred to in section 8.

    [Struck out->] (i) ADVISORY GROUPS- The Commission may establish such advisory groups as it deems necessary to ensure open communication with, and assistance from, the State, political subdivisions of the State, regional planning organizations and interested persons. [<-Struck out]

SEC. 8. DUTIES OF THE COMMISSION.

    (a) PREPARATION OF PLAN- Within 2 years after the Commission conducts its first meeting, it shall submit to the Secretary of the Interior and the Governor of Connecticut for review and approval of Cultural Heritage and Corridor Management Plan. The Plan shall be based on existing Federal, State, and local plans, but shall coordinate those plans and present a unified historic preservation, interpretation, and recreational plan for the Corridor. The plan shall--

      (1) provide an inventory which includes any property in the Corridor which should be preserved, restored, managed, developed, maintained, or acquired because of its national historic or cultural or recreational significance;

      (2) recommend advisory standards and criteria applicable to the construction, preservation, restoration, alteration, and use of all properties within the Corridor;

      (3) develop an historic interpretation plan to interpret the history of the Corridor;

      (4) develop an inventory which includes existing and potential recreational sites which are developed or which could be developed along the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers and their surrounding areas;

      (5) recommend policies for resource management which consider and detail application of appropriate land and water management techniques, including but not limited to, the development of inter-governmental cooperative agreements to protect the Corridor’s historical, cultural, recreational, scenic, and natural resources in a manner consistent with supporting appropriate and compatible economic revitalization efforts;

      (6) detail ways in which local, State, and Federal programs may best be coordinated to promote the purposes of this Act; and

      (7) contain a program for implementation of the Plan by the State and its political subdivisions.

    (b) IMPLEMENTATION OF PLAN- After review and approval of the Plan by the Secretary and the Governor as provided in subsection (a), the Commission shall implement the Plan by taking appropriate steps to preserve and interpret the historic resources, develop the recreational resources of the Corridor and its surrounding area, and to support public and private efforts in economic revitalization, consistent with the goals of the Plan. These steps may include, but need not be limited to--

      (1) assisting the State and local governmental entities or regional planning organizations, and non-profit organizations in preserving the Corridor and ensuring appropriate use of lands and structures throughout the Corridor;

      (2) assisting the State and local governmental entities or regional planning organizations, and non-profit organizations in establishing, and maintaining visitor centers and other interpretive exhibits in the Corridor;

      (3) assisting the State and local governmental entities or regional planning organizations, and non-profit organizations in developing recreational programs and resources in the Corridor;

      (4) assisting the State and local governmental entities or regional planning organizations, and non-profit organizations in increasing public awareness of and appreciation for the historical and architectural resources and sites in the Corridor;

      (5) assisting the State and local governmental or regional planning organizations and nonprofit organizations in the restoration of any historic building in the Corridor;

      (6) encouraging by appropriate means enhanced economic and industrial development in the Corridor consistent with the goals of the Plan;

      (7) encouraging local governments to adopt land use policies consistent with the management of the Corridor and the goals of the Plan, and to ensure appropriate use of lands and structures throughout the Corridor; and

      (8) assisting the State and local governmental entities or regional planning organizations to ensure that clear, consistent signs identifying access points and sites of interest are put in place throughout the Corridor.

SEC. 9. TERMINATION OF COMMISSION.

    (a) TERMINATION- Except as provided in subsection (b), the Commission shall terminate on the day occurring 5 years after the date of enactment of this Act.

    (b) EXTENSION- The Commission may be extended for a period of not more than 5 years beginning on the day of termination referred to in subsection (a) if, not later than 180 days before such day--

      (1) the Commission determines such extension is necessary in order to carry out the purposes of this Act;

      (2) the Commission submits such proposed extension to the Committee on Natural Resources of the United States House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the United States Senate; and

      (3) the Secretary, in consultation with the Governor of Connecticut, approves such extension.

SEC. 10. DUTIES OF THE SECRETARY.

    (a) APPROVAL OF PLAN- The Secretary of the Interior, in consultation with the Governor of Connecticut, shall approve or disapprove a Plan submitted under this Act by the Commission not later than 60 days after receiving such Plan. The Secretary, in consultation with the Governor, shall approve a Plan submitted if--

      (1) they find the Plan, if implemented, would adequately protect significant historical and cultural resources of the Corridor while providing adequate and appropriate outdoor recreational opportunities and economic activities within the Corridor;

      (2) they determine that the Commission held public hearings and provided adequate opportunity for public and governmental involvement in the preparation of the Plan; and

      (3) the Secretary receives adequate assurances from appropriate State officials that the recommended implementation program identified in the Plan will be initiated within a reasonable time after date of approval of the Plan, and that such implementation program will ensure effective implementation of the State and local aspects of the Plan.

    (b) DISAPPROVAL OF PLAN- If the Secretary disapproves a Plan submitted to him by the Commission, he shall advise the Commission in writing of the reasons therefor and shall make recommendations for revisions in the Plan. The Commission shall within 90 days of receipt of such notice of disapproval revise and resubmit the plan to the Secretary who shall approve or disapprove a proposed revision within 60 days after the date it is submitted to him.

    (c) ASSISTANCE- The Secretary of the Interior shall, upon request of the Commission, assist the Commission in the preparation and implementation of Plan.

SEC. 11. DUTIES OF OTHER FEDERAL ENTITIES.

    Any Federal entity conducting or supporting activities directly affecting the Corridor shall--

      (1) consult with the Secretary and the Commission with respect to such activities;

      (2) cooperate with the Secretary and the Commission with respect to such activities and, to the maximum extent practicable, coordinate such activities; and

      (3) to the maximum extent practicable, conduct or support such activities in a manner which the Commission determines will not have an adverse effect on the Corridor.

SEC. 12. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

    (a) COMMISSION- There is authorized to be appropriated $200,000 for fiscal year 1994 and 250,000 annually to the Commission to carry out its duties under this Act except that the Federal contributions to the Commission shall not exceed 50 percent of the annual costs to the Commission in carrying out those duties.

    (b) SECRETARY- There are authorized to be appropriated annually to the Secretary such sums as may be necessary to carry out his duties under this Act.

SEC. 13. DEFINITIONS.

    For purposes of this Act--

      (1) The term ‘Commission’ means the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission established under section 5.

      (2) The term ‘State’ means the State of Connecticut.

      (3) The term ‘Corridor’ means the Quinebaug and Shetucket Rivers Valley National Heritage Corridor established under section 3.

      (4) The term ‘Plan’ means the Cultural Heritage and Corridor Management Plan to be prepared by the Commission pursuant to section 8.

      (5) The term ‘Governor’ means the Governor of the State of Connecticut.

      (6) The term ‘Secretary’ means the Secretary of the Interior.

      (7) The term ‘regional planning organization’ means each of the 3 regional planning organizations established by Connecticut State statute chapter 127 and chapter 50 (the Northeast Council of Governments, the Windham Regional Planning Agency or its successor, and the Southeastern Connecticut Regional Planning Agency or its successor).

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