H.R. 1034: San Juan Islands National Conservation Area Act

113th Congress, 2013–2015. Text as of Mar 07, 2013 (Introduced).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO and Cato Institute Deepbills

I

113th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1034

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

March 7, 2013

(for himself and Ms. DelBene) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources

A BILL

To establish the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area in the San Juan Islands, Washington, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area Act .

2.

Findings; purposes

(a)

Findings

Congress finds that—

(1)

the land managed by the Bureau of Land Management in the San Juan Archipelago in the State of Washington comprising nearly 1,000 acres of small islands, rocks and reef, headlands, historic lighthouses, and ecologically important areas is of great value to people in the State of Washington and the United States;

(2)

the area described in paragraph (1)

(A)

provides recreational opportunities for hiking, wildlife viewing, boating, picnicking, photography, sea kayaking, and camping;

(B)

is enjoyed by the 15,844 year-round residents of the area;

(C)

provides attractions for many of the more than 750,000 visitors to San Juan Island County each year;

(D)

preserves important local, national, and tribal cultural and historic sites, such as—

(i)

lighthouses on Patos Island, Turn Point, and Cattle Point, which are registered as State Historic Structures;

(ii)

numerous archaeological sites, including shell middens, plank-house sites, and burial markers; and

(iii)

areas of cultural importance, including ancient Coast Salish camas cultivation sites, homesteads, reef-net sites, and settler cabins;

(E)

includes vanishing coastal flower meadows, spruce bogs, groves of Garry oaks and endemic coastal junipers, and other rare and fragile ecosystems that support numerous plant species and provide nesting habitat for seabirds, songbirds, bats, and other small native mammals;

(F)

is used by several nonprofit, government, and educational organizations for scientific research and education, including the San Juan Islands Experimental Education Outdoor Classroom;

(G)

was identified by the Secretary of the Interior in November 2011 as 1 of 18 areas of public land in 9 States that was a crown jewel warranting immediate and permanent protection by Congress; and

(H)

the establishment of the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area is the best way to preserve, protect, enhance, and restore a landscape that is of local and national importance.

(b)

Purposes

The purposes of this Act are—

(1)

to conserve, protect, and enhance for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future generations the ecological, scenic, wildlife, recreational, cultural, historical, natural, educational, and scientific resources of the National Conservation Area; and

(2)

to protect each species that is—

(A)

located in the National Conservation Area; and

(B)

listed as a threatened or endangered species on the list of threatened species or the list of endangered species published under section 4(c)(1) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1533(c)(1)).

3.

Definitions

In this Act:

(1)

Advisory Council

The term Advisory Council means the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area Advisory Council established under section 4(e).

(2)

Management plan

The term management plan means the management plan for the National Conservation Area developed under section 4(b).

(3)

National Conservation Area

The term National Conservation Area means the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area established by section 4(a).

(4)

Secretary

The term Secretary means the Secretary of the Interior.

4.

San Juan Islands National Conservation Area

(a)

Establishment

Subject to valid existing rights, there is established in the State of Washington the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area, consisting of approximately 1,000 acres of public land in the State of Washington, as generally depicted on the map entitled Proposed San Juan Islands National Conservation Area and dated June 30, 2011.

(b)

Management plan

(1)

In general

Not later than 3 years after the date of enactment of this Act and in accordance with paragraph (2), the Secretary shall develop a comprehensive plan for the long-term management of the National Conservation Area.

(2)

Consultation

In developing the management plan required under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall consult with—

(A)

appropriate State, tribal, and local governmental entities; and

(B)

members of the public.

(c)

Management

(1)

In general

The Secretary shall manage the National Conservation Area—

(A)

in a manner that conserves, protects, and enhances the resources of the National Conservation Area; and

(B)

in accordance with—

(i)

the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.);

(ii)

this Act; and

(iii)

any other applicable law (including regulations).

(2)

Uses

The Secretary shall only allow uses of the National Conservation Area that the Secretary determines would further a purpose described in section 2(b).

(3)

Motorized vehicles

Except as needed for administrative purposes or to respond to an emergency, the use of motorized vehicles in the National Conservation Area shall be permitted only on roads designated by the management plan for the use of motorized vehicles.

(4)

Wildland fire operations

Nothing in this Act prohibits the Secretary, in cooperation with other Federal, State, and local agencies, as appropriate, from conducting wildland fire operations in the National Conservation Area, consistent with the purposes of this Act.

(5)

Invasive Species and Noxious Weeds

In accordance with any applicable laws and subject to such terms and conditions as the Secretary determines to be appropriate, the Secretary may prescribe measures to control nonnative invasive plants and noxious weeds within the National Conservation Area.

(6)

Tribal cultural uses

The Secretary shall, in consultation with Indian tribes—

(A)

ensure the protection of religious and cultural sites in the National Conservation Area; and

(B)

provide access to the sites by members of Indian tribes for traditional cultural and customary uses, consistent with Public Law 95–341 (commonly known as the American Indian Religious Freedom Act ) (42 U.S.C. 1996).

(d)

No Buffer Zones

(1)

In general

Nothing in this Act creates a protective perimeter or buffer zone around the National Conservation Area.

(2)

Activities outside conservation area

The fact that an activity or use on land outside the National Conservation Area can be seen or heard within the National Conservation Area shall not preclude the activity or use outside the boundary of the National Conservation Area.

(3)

Acquisition of Land

(A)

In general

The Secretary may acquire non-Federal land within the boundaries of the National Conservation Area only through exchange, donation, or purchase from a willing seller.

(B)

Management

Land acquired under subparagraph (A) shall become part of the National Conservation Area.

(e)

Advisory council

(1)

Establishment

Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall establish an advisory council, to be known as the San Juan Islands National Conservation Area Advisory Council .

(2)

Members

(A)

Composition

The Advisory Council shall be composed of 7 members, to be appointed by the Secretary.

(B)

Qualifications

To the maximum extent practicable, the members appointed under subparagraph (A) shall—

(i)

reside in or within reasonable proximity to San Juan County, Washington;

(ii)

have backgrounds that reflect—

(I)

the purposes for which the National Conservation Area was established; and

(II)

the interests of the stakeholders that are affected by the planning and management of the National Conservation Area; and

(iii)

be fairly balanced in terms of the points of view represented and the functions to be performed by the Advisory Council.

(3)

Duties

The Advisory Council shall advise the Secretary with respect to the preparation and implementation of the management plan.

(4)

Applicable Law

The Advisory Council shall be subject to—

(A)

the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.); and

(B)

the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.).

(5)

Termination

The Advisory Council shall terminate on the date that is 1 year after the date on which the management plan is adopted by the Secretary.

(f)

Incorporation of acquired land and interests

Any land acquired by the United States after the date of enactment of this Act that is located in the National Conservation Area shall—

(1)

become part of the National Conservation Area; and

(2)

be managed in accordance with—

(A)

the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.);

(B)

this Act; and

(C)

any other applicable law (including regulations).

(g)

Withdrawal

(1)

In general

Subject to valid existing rights, all Federal land (including interests in the Federal land) located in the National Conservation Area is withdrawn from—

(A)

all forms of entry, appropriation, and disposal under the public land laws;

(B)

location, entry, and patenting under the mining laws; and

(C)

operation of the mineral leasing, mineral materials, and geothermal leasing laws.

(2)

Additional land

Any land acquired by the United States after the date of enactment of this Act that is located in the National Conservation Area shall be withdrawn from operation of the laws referred to in paragraph (1) on the date of acquisition of the land.

(h)

Effect

Nothing in this Act alters, modifies, enlarges, diminishes, or abrogates the treaty rights of any Indian tribe.