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H.R. 3017: Brownfields Enhancement, Economic Redevelopment, and Reauthorization Act of 2017
On Passage of the Bill in the House

This was a vote to pass H.R. 3017 (115th) in the House. The federal budget process occurs in two stages: appropriations, which set overall spending limits by agency or program, and authorizations, which direct how federal funds should (or should not) be used. Appropriation and authorization provisions are typically made for single fiscal years. A reauthorization bill like this one renews the authorizations of an expiring law.

H.R. 1207 reauthorizes the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Brownfields Program and makes several improvements to existing law. Specifically, the legislation:

Clarifies the liability of states and local units of government that take title to property voluntarily Clarifies when a site contaminated by petroleum may be considered a brownfield site and when a leaseholder qualifies for liability protection Expands eligibility for nonprofit organizations and for eligible entities that took title to a brownfield site before January 11, 2001 Increases the limit for remediation grants under the Brownfields Program, establishes multipurpose grants, and allows recovery of limited administrative costs

  • Adds facilitation of the production of renewable energy to the list of criteria for the grant program
  • Allows the EPA to provide additional funds for small, rural, and disadvantaged communities
  • Authorizes $250 million annually over the 2018-2022 period

A brownfield is defined as “a property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.” The EPA estimates that there are more than 450,000 brownfields in the United States.

Traditionally, brownfields are abandoned, closed, or under-utilized industrial or commercial facilities that show evidence of contamination and according to regulation require remediation. Development of such sites is expensive and time-consuming and can be difficult to secure financing for due to liability.

In 2002, the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act provided EPA with the means to work with the public and private sectors to promote brownfields cleanup and reuse. The law authorized funds to assess and cleanup brownfields and authorized funds for state and tribal response programs. The EPA Brownfields Program provides grants to fund environmental assessment, cleanup, and job-training activities. The authorization expired in 2006.

Source: Republican Policy Committee


All Votes R D
Yea 94%
Nay 2%
Not Voting 4%

Passed. Simple Majority Required. Nov 30, 2017 at 5 p.m. ET. Source:

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Notes: The Speaker’s Vote? “Aye” or “Yea”?
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Statistically Notable Votes

Statistically notable votes are the votes that are most surprising, or least predictable, given how other members of each voter’s party voted and other factors.

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