IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
April 2, 2019
Mr. Barrasso (for himself, Mr. Gardner, Mrs. Fischer, Mr. Bennet, and Mr. Enzi) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
To authorize the Secretary of the Interior to participate in the implementation of the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program First Increment Extension for threatened and endangered species in the Central and Lower Platte River Basin, and for other purposes.
This Act may be cited as the
Platte River Recovery Implementation Program Extension Act.
The purpose of this Act is to authorize the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Commissioner of Reclamation and in partnership with the States, other Federal agencies, and other non-Federal entities, to continue the cooperative effort among the Federal and non-Federal entities through the continued implementation of the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program First Increment Extension for threatened and endangered species in the Central and Lower Platte River Basin without creating Federal water rights or requiring the grant of water rights to Federal entities.
In this Act:
The term Agreement means the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program Cooperative Agreement entered into by the Governors of the States and the Secretary, including an amendment or addendum to the Agreement to extend the Program.
The term First Increment means the Program’s first 13 years from January 1, 2007 through December 31, 2019.
First increment extension
The term First Increment Extension means the extension of the Program for 13 years from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2032.
The term Governance Committee means the governance committee established under the Agreement and composed of members from the States, the Federal Government, environmental interests, and water users.
Interest in land or water
The term interest in land or water includes fee title, short- or long-term easement, lease, or other contractual arrangement that is determined to be necessary by the Secretary to implement the land and water components of the Program.
The term Program means the Platte River Recovery Implementation Program established under the Agreement and continued under an amendment or addendum to the Agreement.
Project or activity
The term project or activity means—
the planning, design, permitting, or other compliance activity, construction, construction management, operation, maintenance, and replacement of a facility;
the acquisition of an interest in land or water;
research and monitoring;
program administration; and
any other activity that is determined to be necessary by the Secretary to carry out the Program.
The term Secretary means the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Commissioner of Reclamation.
States means the States of Colorado, Nebraska, and Wyoming.
Platte river recovery implementation program
Implementation of program
The Secretary, in cooperation with the Governance Committee, may—
participate in the Program; and
carry out any projects and activities that are designated for implementation during the First Increment Extension.
Authority of the Secretary
For the purposes of carrying out this section, the Secretary, in cooperation with the Governance Committee, may—
enter into agreements and contracts with Federal and non-Federal entities;
acquire interests in land, water, and facilities from willing sellers without the use of eminent domain;
subsequently transfer any interests acquired under subparagraph (B); and
accept or provide grants.
As provided in the Agreement, the States shall contribute not less than 50 percent of the total contributions necessary to carry out the Program.
The following contributions shall constitute the States’ share of the Program:
An additional $28,000,000 in non-Federal funds, with the balance of funds remaining to be contributed to be adjusted for inflation on October 1 of the year after the date of enactment of this Act and each October 1 thereafter.
Additional credit for contributions of water or land for the purposes of implementing the Program, as determined to be appropriate by the Secretary.
The Secretary or the States may elect to provide a portion of the Federal share or non-Federal share, respectively, in the form of in-kind goods or services, if the contribution of goods or services is approved by the Governance Committee, as provided in Attachment 1 of the Agreement.
Authority To modify program
The Program may be modified or amended before the completion of the First Increment Extension if the Secretary and the States determine that the modifications are consistent with the purposes of the Program.
Effect on reclamation laws
No action carried out under this section shall, with respect to the acreage limitation provisions of the reclamation laws—
be considered in determining whether a district (as the term is defined in section 202 of the Reclamation Reform Act of 1982 (43 U.S.C. 390bb)) has discharged the obligation of the district to repay the construction cost of project facilities used to make irrigation water available for delivery to land in the district;
serve as the basis for reinstating acreage limitation provisions in a district that has completed payment of the construction obligations of the district; or
serve as the basis for increasing the construction repayment obligation of the district, which would extend the period during which the acreage limitation provisions would apply.
Effect on water rights
Nothing in this section—
creates Federal water rights; or
requires the grant of water rights to Federal entities.
Authorization of appropriations
There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out projects and activities under this section an additional $78,000,000 as adjusted under paragraph (3).
Nonreimbursable Federal expenditures
Any amounts to be expended under paragraph (1) shall be considered nonreimbursable Federal expenditures.
The balance of funds remaining to be expended shall be adjusted for inflation on October 1 of the year after the date of enactment of this Act and each October 1 thereafter.
Availability of funds
At the end of each fiscal year, any unexpended funds for projects and activities made available under paragraph (1) shall be retained for use in future fiscal years to implement projects and activities under the Program. Any unexpended funds appropriated during the First Increment shall be retained and carried over from the First Increment into the First Increment Extension.
Termination of authority
The authority for the Secretary to implement the First Increment Extension shall terminate on September 30, 2033.