< Back to H.R. 3494 (112th Congress, 2011–2013)

Text of the Restoring America’s Faith and Trust Act

This bill was introduced on November 18, 2011, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Nov 18, 2011 (Introduced).

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Source: GPO

I

112th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 3494

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

November 18, 2011

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and in addition to the Committees on Appropriations, the Budget, and Natural Resources, 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 restore faith and trust in the United States economy and financial system by reducing Federal spending, reducing the size of the Federal workforce, liquidating certain property and assets of the Federal Government, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title; findings

(a)

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Restoring America’s Faith and Trust Act.

(b)

Findings

Congress finds the following:

(1)

The Federal budget deficit has unsustainably been more than $1 trillion for each of fiscal years 2009, 2010, and 2011.

(2)

The credit rating of the debt of the United States has been downgraded from AAA to AA+ by Standard and Poor’s.

(3)

The United States needs to take necessary and immediate action to stabilize the debt burden of the Federal government.

(4)

Congress is obligated to enact policy that restores America’s faith and trust.

2.

Reduction of Federal spending

(a)

Rescissions

(1)

Fiscal year 2012

Of the discretionary budget authority provided for fiscal year 2012 in all appropriations Acts, 50 percent of the amount that exceeds the discretionary budget authority for fiscal year 2006 in all appropriations Acts is rescinded.

(2)

Fiscal year 2013

On October 1, 2012, of the discretionary budget authority provided for fiscal year 2013 in all appropriations Acts, any amount that exceeds the discretionary budget authority provided for fiscal year 2006 in all appropriations Acts is rescinded.

(3)

Fiscal year 2014

On October 1, 2013, of the discretionary budget authority provided for fiscal year 2014 in all appropriations Acts, any amount that exceeds the discretionary budget authority provided for fiscal year 2006 in all appropriations Acts is rescinded.

(b)

Subsequent appropriation laws

In the case of any fiscal year 2012, 2013, or 2014 appropriation Act enacted after the enactment of this section, any rescission required by subsections (a)(1), (a)(2), or (a)(3) shall take effect immediately after the enactment of such Act.

(c)

OMB report

Within 30 days after the enactment of any fiscal year 2012, 2013, or 2014 appropriations Act, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget shall submit to the Committees on Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the Senate a report specifying the account and amount of each rescission made pursuant to subsection (a).

(d)

Limitation on spending increases

(1)

In general

For any fiscal year beginning after fiscal year 2013, the total new budget authority provided for such fiscal year shall not increase from the previous fiscal year level at a rate that is greater than the percentage by which the gross domestic product of the United States increases from such previous year. If there is no increase in gross domestic product, the total new budget authority for a fiscal year shall not be higher than the previous fiscal year level.

(2)

Measurement of GDP

For purposes of applying paragraph (1) to a fiscal year, the Bureau of Economic Analysis of the Department of Commerce shall determine the gross domestic product before the start of the second quarter of the previous fiscal year.

3.

Reduction of the Federal workforce through voluntary separation

(a)

Limitation

The President, through the Office of Management and Budget (in consultation with the Office of Personnel Management), shall take appropriate measures to ensure that the total number of Federal employees (as determined under subsection (b)) shall not exceed the total number of Federal employees as of October 1, 2007 (as so determined). The reduction of employees from the civil service (as that term is defined in section 2101 of title 5, United States Code) required under this subsection shall be achieved only through voluntary separation of such an employee. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent an agency from separating an employee for any other permissible reason.

(b)

Monitoring and notification

The Office of Management and Budget (in consultation with the Office of Personnel Management)—

(1)

shall continuously monitor all agencies and make a determination, as of 90 days after the date of enactment of this section, and the last day of each quarter of each fiscal year beginning thereafter, as to whether or not the total number of Federal employees exceeds the maximum number allowable under subsection (a); and

(2)

whenever a determination under paragraph (1) is made that the total number of Federal employees exceeds the maximum number allowable under subsection (a), shall provide written notice to that effect to the President and Congress within 14 days after the last day of the quarter to which such determination relates.

(c)

Compliance

Whenever the Office of Management and Budget provides written notice under subsection (b)(2) that the total number of Federal employees exceeds the maximum number allowable under subsection (a), no agency may thereafter appoint any employee to fill any vacancy within such agency until the Office of Management and Budget provides written notice to the President and Congress of a determination under subsection (b)(1) that the total number of Federal employees no longer exceeds the maximum number allowable under subsection (a). Any notice under the preceding sentence shall be provided within 14 days after the last day of the quarter to which the determination relates.

(d)

Waiver

(1)

Emergencies

This section may be waived upon a determination by the President that—

(A)

the existence of a state of war or other national security concern so requires; or

(B)

the existence of an extraordinary emergency threatening life, health, public safety, property, or the environment so requires.

(2)

Agency efficiency or critical mission

This section may be waived, with respect to a particular position or category of positions in an agency, upon a determination by the President and Congress that the efficiency of the agency or the performance of a critical agency mission so requires.

(e)

Counting rule

For purposes of this section, any determination of the number of employees in an agency shall be expressed on a full-time equivalent basis.

(f)

Limitation on procurement of service contracts

The President, through the Office of Management and Budget (in consultation with the Office of Personnel Management), shall take appropriate measures to ensure that there is no increase in the procurement of service contracts by reason of the enactment of this section, except—

(1)

in cases in which a cost comparison demonstrates that such contracts would be to the financial advantage of the Government;

(2)

in the case of an extraordinary emergency threatening life, health, public safety, property, or the environment; or

(3)

in cases in which agency efficiency or the performance of a critical agency mission so requires.

(g)

Regulations

Any regulations necessary to carry out this section may be prescribed by the President or his designee.

(h)

Definitions

For the purpose of this section—

(1)

the term total number of Federal employees means the total number of Federal employees in all agencies;

(2)

the term Federal employee means an employee as defined by section 2105 of title 5, United States Code; and

(3)

the term agency means an Executive agency as defined by section 105 of title 5, United States Code, excluding the Government Accountability Office.

4.

Federal real property disposal program

(a)

Expedited disposal of real property

The Administrator of General Services (in this section referred to as the Administrator), in consultation with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (in this section referred to as the Director), shall conduct a program, to be known as the Federal Real Property Disposal Program, under which surplus real property may be disposed of in accordance with this section.

(b)

Surplus property database

Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Administrator, in consultation with the Director, shall establish and maintain a database of all surplus real property and make such database available to the public.

(c)

Disposal

(1)

In general

The Administrator shall—

(A)

not later than September 30 of each year, submit to Congress a report on the total fair market value of all surplus real property for that fiscal year;

(B)

based on the report submitted pursuant to subparagraph (A), dispose of 97% of such total fair market value of surplus real property under the Federal Real Property Disposal Program during the following fiscal year; and

(C)

make such property available for sale to State and local governments and to the public, in accordance with paragraph (2).

(2)

Expedited disposal requirements

(A)

Expedited disposal of real property defined

For purposes of the Federal Real Property Disposal Program, an expedited disposal of real property is a sale of surplus real property for cash that is conducted pursuant to the requirements of section 545 of title 40, United States Code.

(B)

Fair market value requirement

Real property sold under the program must be sold at not less than the fair market value as determined by the Administrator in consultation with the head of the executive agency. Costs associated with disposal may not exceed the fair market value of the property unless the Administrator approves incurring such costs.

(C)

Monetary proceeds requirement

Real property may be sold under the program only if the property will generate monetary proceeds to the Federal Government, as provided in subparagraph (B). A disposal of real property under the program may not include any exchange, trade, transfer, acquisition of like-kind property, or other non-cash transaction as part of the disposal.

(D)

Purchase by State or local government and the public

(i)

State or local government

The Administrator shall make real property under the program first available for sale to State and local governments for a period of 45 days.

(ii)

Public sale

After the expiration of the period described in clause (i), if the Administrator has received no offer from a State or local government to purchase real property under the program, the Administrator shall make such property available for sale to the public.

(iii)

Extension

If the Administrator receives an offer from a State or local government during the period described in clause (i), the Administrator may have an additional 30 days from the expiration of the period described in clause (i) to finalize the sale. After the expiration of the additional 30 days, the Administrator shall make such property available for sale to the public.

(iv)

State defined

In this subparagraph, the term State means each of the several States, the District of Columbia, each territory or possession of the United States, and each federally recognized Indian tribe.

(E)

Rule of construction

Nothing in this section shall be construed as terminating or in any way limiting authorities that are otherwise available to agencies under other provisions of law to dispose of Federal real property, except as provided in subparagraph (F).

(F)

Exemption from certain requirements

Any expedited disposal of real property conducted under this section shall not be subject to—

(i)

subchapter IV of chapter 5 of subtitle I of title 40, United States Code;

(ii)

sections 550 and 553 of title 40, United States Code;

(iii)

section 501 of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11411);

(iv)

any other provision of law authorizing the no-cost conveyance of real property owned by the Federal Government; or

(v)

any congressional notification requirement other than that in section 545 of title 40, United States Code.

(3)

Exception

The Director shall not include for purposes of the Federal Real Property Disposal Program any parcel of real property, building, or other structure located on such real property that is to be closed or realigned under the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Act of 1990 (10 U.S.C. 2687 note).

(d)

Special rules for deposit and use of proceeds from expedited disposals

(1)

Reimbursement

Executive agencies that conduct expedited disposals of real property under this section shall be reimbursed from the proceeds for the administrative expenses associated with the disposal of such property. Such amounts will be credited as offsetting collections to the account that incurred such expenses, to remain available until expended subject to appropriations.

(2)

Distribution of proceeds

After payment of such administrative costs, the balance of the proceeds shall be distributed as follows:

(A)

Eighty percent shall be deposited into the General Fund of the Treasury for Federal budget deficit reduction.

(B)

Twenty percent shall be deposited into the account of the agency that owned the real property and initiated the disposal action. Such funds shall be available without further appropriation, to remain available for the period of the Federal Real Property Disposal Program, for activities related to Federal real property capital improvements and disposal activities.

(e)

Definitions

In this section:

(1)

Executive agency

The term executive agency has the meaning given that term under section 102(4) of title 40, United States Code.

(2)

Surplus property

The term surplus property has the meaning given that term under section 102(10) of title 40, United States Code.

(3)

Surplus real property

The term surplus real property means real property that is surplus property.

(f)

Annual report

(1)

In general

Not later than December 31 of each year, the Administrator, in consultation with the Director, shall submit a report to the congressional committees listed in paragraph (3) based on data submitted from all executive agencies, for the previous fiscal year, detailing executive agency efforts to reduce real property assets and the information required by paragraph (2).

(2)

Report contents

The report shall contain the following information:

(A)

The aggregated estimated market value and number of real property assets under the custody and control of all executive agencies, set forth government-wide and by agency, and for each at the constructed asset level and at the facility/installation level.

(B)

The aggregated estimated market value and number of surplus and excess real property assets under the custody and control of all executive agencies, set forth government-wide and by agency, and for each at the constructed asset level and at the facility/installation level.

(C)
(i)

The aggregated cost for maintaining all surplus and excess real property under the custody and control of all executive agencies, set forth government-wide and by agency, and for each at the constructed asset level and at the facility/installation level.

(ii)

For purposes of clause (i), costs for real properties owned by the Federal Government shall include recurring maintenance and repair costs, utilities, cleaning and janitorial costs, and roads and grounds expenses.

(iii)

For purposes of clause (i), costs for real properties leased by the Federal Government shall include lease costs, including base and operating rent and any other relevant costs listed in clause (ii) not covered in the lease contract.

(D)

The aggregated estimated deferred maintenance costs of all real property under the custody and control of all executive agencies, set forth government-wide and by agency, and for each at the constructed asset level and at the facility/installation level.

(E)

For each surplus real property disposed of, an indication of—

(i)

the geographic location with address and description of such property;

(ii)

the size, including square footage and acreage, of such property;

(iii)

the date and method of disposal;

(iv)

the estimated replacement value of such property; and

(v)

the proceeds obtained from the disposition of such property.

(F)

The amount of time required to fully dispose of surplus and excess real property under the custody and control of all executive agencies, set forth government-wide and by agency, and for each at the constructed asset level and at the facility/installation level.

(G)

The cost to dispose of surplus and excess real property under the custody and control of all executive agencies, set forth government-wide and by agency, and for each at the constructed asset level and at the facility/installation level.

(H)

A description of whether the Administrator disposed of 97% of the total fair market value of surplus real property under the Federal Real Property Disposal Program pursuant to subsection (c).

(I)

Such other information as the Administrator considers appropriate.

(3)

Congressional committees

The congressional committees listed in this paragraph are as follows:

(A)

The Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives.

(B)

The Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs and the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the Senate.

5.

Sale of certain Federal lands previously identified as suitable for disposal

(a)

Competitive sale of lands

The Secretary shall offer the identified Federal lands for disposal by competitive sale for not less than fair market value as determined by an independent appraiser.

(b)

Existing rights

The sale of identified Federal lands under this section shall be subject to valid existing rights.

(c)

Proceeds of sale of lands

All net proceeds from the sale of identified Federal lands under this section shall be deposited directly into the Treasury for reduction of the public debt.

(d)

Report

Not later than 4 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Natural Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate—

(1)

a list of any identified Federal lands that were not sold under subsection (a) and the reasons such lands were not sold; and

(2)

an updated inventory of all identified Federal lands.

(e)

Definitions

In this section:

(1)

Identified Federal lands

(A)

The term identified Federal lands means Federal lands that are—

(i)

under the administrative jurisdiction of the Secretary;

(ii)

located in States where more than 50 percent of the total land area is federally owned;

(iii)

suitable for disposal; and

(iv)

not described in subparagraph (B).

(B)

The term identified Federal lands does not include the following:

(i)

Lands not identified for disposal an the applicable land use plan.

(ii)

Lands subject to a Recreation and Public Purpose conveyance application.

(iii)

Lands identified for State selection.

(iv)

Lands identified for Indian tribe allotments.

(v)

Lands identified for local government use.

(2)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of the Interior.

6.

Federal program sunset

(a)

Requirement To reauthorize Federal programs

Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Director of the Office of Management shall submit a plan to Congress that provides for the phased-in expiration of all Federal programs every three years. Any Federal program that is scheduled to expire under the plan must be reauthorized.

(b)

No funding through a continuing resolution

Each program that is reauthorized pursuant to subsection (a) may not be funded through a continuing resolution.

(c)

Public recommendation and signed statement

Not later than the date on which the head of each executive agency submits an appropriation request for such agency under section 1108 of title 31, United States, Code, the head of each executive agency shall—

(1)

make a public recommendation for each Federal program of such agency, including a determination for the reasons each such program exists; and

(2)

submit a signed statement to Congress for each such Federal program as follows: As the head of the executive agency responsible for this Federal program, I have reviewed its purpose, mandate, and necessity, and I recommend that Congress appropriate funding so that the Federal program can continue for the next fiscal year. It is my professional judgment that such Federal program in question serves a significant purpose for which the United States taxpayer is well-served in the use of such taxpayer’s money to fund the program..