< Back to H.R. 4834 (105th Congress, 1997–1998)

Text of the Northwest Salmon Recovery Act of 1998

This bill was introduced on October 14, 1998, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Oct 4, 1998 (Introduced).

Source: GPO

HR 4834 IH

105th CONGRESS

2d Session

H. R. 4834

To ensure salmon recovery in the Pacific Northwest, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

October 4, 1998

Ms. FURSE introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Resources, and in addition to the Committee on Commerce, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned


A BILL

To ensure salmon recovery in the Pacific Northwest, 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 ‘Northwest Salmon Recovery Act of 1998’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    The Congress finds that:

      (1) In order to deal with significant changes in the Nation’s electric utility industry, and to continue to enjoy the considerable benefits the Pacific Northwest receives from the Federal Columbia River Power System through the Bonneville Power Administration, new tools are needed to ensure that the electric power customers of the Administration repay all the costs associated with the system, including the public obligations to restore fish and wildlife, meet treaty and trust obligations, and pay the United States Treasury and the Washington Public Power Supply System bondholders.

      (2) In addition, new tools are needed to ensure salmon recovery and promote conservation and renewable resources in the Pacific Northwest region.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

    For purposes of this Act:

      (1) The term ‘Administration’ means the Bonneville Power Administration.

      (2) The term ‘Administrator’ means the Administrator of the Bonneville Power Administration.

      (3) The term ‘Council’ means the Pacific Northwest Electric Power and Conservation Planning Council established by the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act.

      (4) The term ‘Commission’ means the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

      (5) The terms ‘region’ and ‘Pacific Northwest’ have the meaning provided for such terms by section 3(11) of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act.

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

      (7) The term ‘States’ means the States of Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Montana, and Alaska.

      (8) The term ‘tribes’ means the following federally recognized Indian tribes: Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, Shoshone-Bannock Tribe, Nez Perce Tribe, Kootenai Tribe of Idaho, Coeur d’Alene Tribe, Shoshone-Paiute Tribes, Burns-Paiute Tribe, Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Confederated Tribes of Umatilla, and Confederated Tribes of Yakama, Spokane Tribe, Colville Tribe, and Kalispel Tribe.

      (9) The term ‘unified plan’ means the unified plan developed under section 4 of this Act.

      (10) The term ‘WPPSS’ means the Washington Public Power Supply System.

SEC. 4. GOVERNANCE.

    The Secretary of the Interior shall, in consultation with the Federal, State, and tribal governments in the Pacific Northwest, develop a unified plan for salmon recovery

in the region by December 31, 1999. The goal of this plan shall be to restore sustainable, naturally reproducing salmon populations to support tribal and nontribal harvest and cultural and economic practices. The plan shall address treaty, trust, and Endangered Species Act responsibilities, the fish mitigation and enhancement requirements of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act, the water quality standards under the Clean Water Act, and the United States-Canada Pacific Salmon Treaty commitments. Implementation of the unified plan and the Northwest Power Planning Council’s fish and wildlife program shall be overseen by the Secretary of the Interior. The Secretary shall promulgate a rule, in accordance with the applicable requirements of title 5 of the United States Code, applicable environmental requirements, and other applicable requirements of law, containing the plan developed under this section.

SEC. 5. FISCAL ACCOUNTABILITY.

    (a) ACCOUNTING SYSTEM-

      (1) REQUIREMENTS- Not later than 12 months after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Energy and the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Office of Management and Budget and the General Accounting Office, shall establish an accounting system for the Administration that meets each of the following requirements:

        (A) REPAYMENT OF COSTS TO THE UNITED STATES TREASURY- The accounting system shall ensure that all costs repayable to the United States Treasury are paid in a timely manner. The accounting system shall provide for independent, outside reviews of Administration repayment studies and include the views of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Such reviews shall assess assumptions and methodologies, application of appropriate interest rates, and whether all power-related costs are included for repayment.

        (B) FISH AND WILDLIFE COSTS- The accounting system shall properly and accurately identify costs allocable to compliance with the restoration of fish and wildlife in the region, including treaty, trust, and Endangered Species Act responsibilities of the Administrator, the fish mitigation and enhancement requirements of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act, and the water quality standards under the Clean Water Act. The Administration is prohibited from allocating to fishery restoration accounts the costs of spills or releases of water that result in power loss or which are required for purposes of flood control, irrigation, navigation, or other authorized activities.

      (2) ACCOUNTING PRINCIPLES AND REQUIREMENTS- The accounting system shall provide procedures to ensure regular consultation with Federal, State, and tribal governments in the region, tracking of the costs associated with each of the Administrator’s significant responsibilities, including those referred to in paragraph (1).

      (3) PUBLIC AVAILABILITY- The system shall contain procedures to ensure that the books and records of the Administration, including all accounting records regarding the costs allocated to fishery restoration, public purposes, and the WPPSS debt, are available to the public.

      (4) COMPLIANCE- The system shall contain procedures for the filing of complaints with the Secretary of Energy by interested persons seeking to ensure compliance with this section.

    (b) FISH AND WILDLIFE BUDGET MANAGEMENT AND ACCOUNTABILITY- The Secretaries of the Interior, Energy, Commerce, and the Army shall implement (until

the unified plan takes effect) the Memorandum of Agreement and Annex on Budget Management and Accountability adopted in September 1996, including procedures for effective regional involvement and accountability in the expenditure of moneys from the Administration’s fund pursuant to section 4(h)(10) of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act. The following procedures shall apply to administration of the Memorandum of Agreement and the unified plan:

      (1) Open and accurate methods for tracking the funding, implementation, and performance of activities.

      (2) Independent scientific review of activities funded pursuant to this Act. Such independent scientific review shall be undertaken by an independent scientific advisory board appointed by the Secretary of the Interior, in consultation with the region’s State and tribal governments. Appointments to the Board will take into account recommendations from the chair of the National Research Council.

      (3) Coordinated and integrated project prioritization processes for selection of activities (under both the unified plan and the Council’s fish and wildlife program) to be funded pursuant to this Act to be implemented by State and tribal governments and the Secretaries of the Interior, Energy, Commerce, and the Army for all fish and wildlife expenditures pursuant to this Act, using consistent criteria that allow for choices among direct, reimbursable and capital, and other expenditure categories.

      (4) Effective procedures for resolution of disputes regarding budget management and accountability.

    (c) REPEAL- Section 4(h)(10)(D) of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 839b(h)(10)(D)) is hereby repealed.

SEC. 6. PAYMENTS TOWARD THE NATURAL RESOURCES RECOVERY FUND AND THE WPPSS DEBT.

    (a) NATURAL RESOURCES RECOVERY FUND-

      (1) ESTABLISHMENT- The Secretary of the Interior shall establish a Natural Resources Recovery Fund. The Fund shall be managed by the Secretary.

      (2) USES OF FUND- The Secretary of the Interior shall expend amounts in the Fund in a manner consistent with the Memorandum of Agreement referred to in section 5 until the unified plan takes effect. When the unified plan takes effect, the Fund shall be administered in a manner consistent with such unified plan. If no unified plan exists, the Secretary of the Interior shall allocate funds in consultation with States, tribes, and Federal agencies. Amounts in the Fund shall be used for the restoration of fish and wildlife in the region, including meeting treaty, trust, and Endangered Species Act responsibilities, the fish mitigation and enhancement requirements of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act, and implementation of measures necessary to meet the water quality standards under the Clean Water Act. Moneys in the Fund may also be used to promote conservation and renewable energy projects.

      (3) SOURCE OF MONIES- All fees collected under paragraph (4) shall be deposited in the Fund, and such fees shall be available without further appropriation for the purposes set forth in paragraph (2).

      (4) DISTRIBUTION FEE- Each public and investor-owned utility that purchases electric power from the Administrator and makes retail sales of electric power in the region shall collect and deposit in the Fund a fee in the amount of 3 mills per kilowatt hour on all retail electric power sales made by such utility in the region during the 15 calendar years following the date of the enactment of this Act. During such 15-year period, the Administrator

shall collect from each direct service industrial customer of the Administrator (as defined in section 3(8) of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act) a fee in the amount of 3 mills per kilowatt hour.

    (b) PAYMENTS OF WPPSS DEBT- In order to ensure that the costs of repayment of Washington Public Power Supply System debt is repaid and fairly allocated to all Administration customers, the Administrator shall establish, collect, and use for repayment of the WPPSS debt each of the following fees and charges:

      (1) FEE OR SURCHARGE FOR CERTAIN NEW CONTRACTS- The Administrator shall require each direct service industrial customer (as defined in section 3(8) of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act) that enters into a new contract with the Administrator for the delivery of electric energy by the Administrator during the period beginning after the date of the enactment of this Act and ending in the year 2006 to pay either a fee established by the Administrator or an additional percentage surcharge over the otherwise applicable rates.

      (2) EXIT CHARGE- The Administrator shall require each wholesale power purchaser receiving electric energy as of the year 2006 that does not enter into a contract with the Administration for the delivery of power after the year 2006 to pay an exit charge in such amount as may be established by the Administrator.

      (3) AMOUNT OF FEE, SURCHARGE, OR EXIT CHARGE- Fees, surcharges, and exit charges received by the Administrator under this subsection shall be established at such level as the Administrator deems necessary to insure that the direct service industrial customers referred to in paragraph (1) and the wholesale power purchasers referred to in paragraph (2) pay an equitable portion of the Washington Public Power Supply System debt based upon each purchaser’s historic purchases.

    (c) RELATIONSHIP TO RATES- The fees, surcharges, and exit charges imposed as provided in this section shall be in addition to the rates established as provided in sections 7 and 8.

SEC. 7. RATES FOR POWER SALES BY BONNEVILLE POWER ADMINISTRATION.

    (a) RATES, TERMS, AND CONDITIONS-

      (1) IN GENERAL- All rates and charges made, demanded, or received by the Administrator for the sale of electric energy by the Administration to its electric energy customers (other than the fees, surcharges, and charges referred to in section 6) shall recover from such customers, over a reasonable period of years, in accordance with sound business principles, all costs incurred by the United States for the generation and marketing of electric energy sold by the Administration, including meeting treaty, trust, and Endangered Species Act responsibilities, the fish mitigation and enhancement requirements of the Northwest Power Act, and the water quality standards under the Clean Water Act.

      (2) COMMISSION APPROVAL- Rates established under this section shall become effective only upon a determination by the Commission that such rates meet the requirements of paragraph (1). The Commission may modify proposed rates submitted by the Administrator and establish terms and conditions to meet the requirements of paragraph (1).

    (b) EXISTING RATES- All rates, terms, and conditions for the sale of electric energy at wholesale by the Administration placed into effect on a final basis pursuant to any authority prior to the date of enactment of this Act shall remain in full force and effect unless the Commission determines, after a hearing held upon its own motion or upon complaint, that the rates, terms, and conditions are inconsistent with subsection (a) of this section and establishes new rates, terms, and conditions. Such new rates, terms, and conditions shall not result in rates for such sales that are in excess of the comparable market rate for electricity in the Western System Coordinating Council.

SEC. 8. FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION REGULATION OF BONNEVILLE POWER ADMINISTRATION TRANSMISSION RATES.

    (a) IN GENERAL- The transmission of electric energy by the Administration shall be subject to the provisions of parts II and III of the Federal Power Act (except sections 204, 207, 209, 214, and 305), and the Commission shall have jurisdiction under such parts II and III over the rates, terms, and conditions of such transmission. Such provisions of the Federal Power Act and the rules, regulations, and policies of the Commission thereunder shall apply to such transmission by the Administration to the same extent and in the same manner as such provisions apply to the transmission of electric energy by a public utility otherwise subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission under part II of such Act, except that rates charged by the Administration for the transmission of electric energy shall be sufficient to recover all costs for compliance with treaty, trust, and Endangered Species

Act responsibilities, the fish mitigation and enhancement requirements of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act, and the water quality standards under the Clean Water Act.

    (b) SEPARATION- (1) The financial and accounting system established for the Administration under section 5 shall assure the separation of all costs, revenues, and other fiscal matters associated with transmission from the costs, revenues, and other fiscal matters associated with power sales. The Commission shall review and approve or disapprove such administrative separation and assure that only costs properly allocable to transmission rates are recovered through transmission rates. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to limit or affect the authority of the Administrator to impose a transmission fee as part of cost recovery measures under subsection (c)(1)(B)(ii).

    (2) Except for purposes of assuring such transmission access as is necessary for purposes of meeting treaty, trust, and Endangered Species Act responsibilities, the fish mitigation and enhancement requirements of the Northwest Power Act, and the water quality standards under the Clean Water Act, the Commission shall take such steps as may be necessary to assure that no preference is accorded to the Administration for the transmission of power sold by the Administration.

    (c) COST RECOVERY ADJUSTMENT- (1) Whenever, during the period beginning October 1, 2001, and ending September 30, 2016, the Administrator, in accordance with account procedures established under section 5, determines that either--

      (A) the Administration’s reserves have fallen below $800,000,000, or

      (B) a 10-year forecast indicates that in any 1 future year, the Administration has less than a 95 percent probability of meeting a payment to the United States Treasury,

    the Administrator shall submit to the Commission a transmission rate increase under this subsection and implement the following cost recovery measures designed to correct, within 5 years, such reserve deficiency or reduced payment ability forecast:

      (i) the Administrator shall adjust wholesale power rates (up to the market rate for electricity in the Western System Coordinating Council) to meet the revenue requirement set forth in subparagraph (A) or (B), as the case may be; and

      (ii) if increasing wholesale rates up to the market rate of electricity in the Western System Coordinating Council is not sufficient to meet such requirement, the Administrator shall implement a transmission fee to generate revenues sufficient to meet such requirement but not in excess of $100,000,000 a year.

    (2) The Commission shall approve, disapprove, or modify any transmission rate increase submitted under this subsection within 30 days after the date of submission. The Commission shall approve such increase if the Commission determines that such rate increase meets the requirements of this subsection and that the Administrator has taken reasonable steps to avoid such increase by using its authority under section 4(h)(10)(C) of the Pacific Northwest Electric Power, Planning and Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 838b(h)(10)(D)).