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Legislative History and Digest of H.R. 2405

SHORT TITLE: Omnibus Civilian Science Authorization Act of 1995

PRINCIPAL SPONSOR: Rep. Robert Walker (R-PA) (Chairman, House Committee on Science)

DATE INTRODUCED: 09/27/95

COSPONSORS: (As Introduced) Sensenbrenner, Morella, Rohrabacher, and Schiff

COMPLETE BILL TEXT:
The complete bill text is available on Thomas: The Library of Congress Web Site. In Thomas, click on Full Text of Legislation, then 104th Congress Bills, then Search by Bill Number, type in hr 2405 , hit RUN QUERY, and choose the most recent version.

BILL DIGEST:

(REVISED AS OF 10/12/95 -- Passed House, amended)

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Title I: National Science Foundation
Subtitle A: National Science Foundation Authorization
Subtitle B: General Provisions
Title II: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Subtitle A: General Provisions
Subtitle B: Authorization of Appropriations
Subtitle C: Miscellaneous Provisions
Title III: Department of Energy
Title IV: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Subtitle A: Atmospheric, Weather, and Satellite Programs
Subtitle B: Marine Research
Subtitle C: Program Support
Subtitle D: Streamlining of Operations
Subtitle E: Miscellaneous
Title V: Environmental Protection Agency
Title VI: Technology
Title VII: United States Fire Administration
Title VIII: Buy American

Omnibus Civilian Science Authorization Act of 1995 - Title I: National Science Foundation - National Science Foundation Authorization Act of 1995 -
Subtitle A: National Science Foundation Authorization - Authorizes appropriations to the National Science Foundation (NSF) for FY 1996 and 1997.

(Sec. 114) Provides for reprogramming of appropriations.

Subtitle B: General Provisions - Amends the National Science Foundation Act of 1950 to direct NSF to include in its annual report to the President a strategic plan defining its goals, criteria, and procedures.

(Sec. 122) Requires NSF to submit to the Congress an annual upgrade and maintenance plan for national research facilities.

(Sec. 123) Amends the Academic Research Facilities Modernization Act of 1988 to give research facility grant priority to institutions or consortia that have not received such funds in the preceding five years.

(Sec. 124) Makes administrative amendments to the National Science Foundation Act of 1950, the National Science Foundation Authorization Act, 1976, the National Science Foundation Authorization Act of 1988, and the Education for Economic Security Act.

(Sec. 126) Requires certain research instrumentation and facilities guidelines to be incorporated into NSF grant notices.

(Sec. 127) Subjects NSF temporary employees to the same financial disclosure requirements as apply to permanent employees.

(Sec. 128) Requires an institution of higher education receiving NSF funds to grant a military-educational leave of absence to a student on active military duty (other than training).

(Sec. 129) Prohibits the use of any funds authorized under this title from being used for any lobbying activity.

(Sec. 130) Renames the Critical Technologies Institute as the Science Studies Institute.

(Sec. 131) Requires NSF to consider the impact of a grant on undergraduate and graduate education before its award.

(Sec. 132) Authorizes the Director of NSF to appoint up to six Assistant Directors.

(Sec. 134) Excludes from NSF awards for five years any person who received project funds not subject to competitive merit-based awards. (Exempts persons who are members of a law-specified class.)

Title II: National Aeronautics and Space Administration - Subtitle A: General Provisions - National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act, Fiscal Year 1996 - Sets forth definitions for purposes of this title.

Subtitle B: Authorization of Appropriations - Chapter 1: Authorizations - Authorizes appropriations for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for: (1) human space flight; (2) science, aeronautics, and technology, including facilities construction; (3) mission support; and (4) the Inspector General.

(Sec. 215) Limits the total NASA FY 1996 authorization of appropriations.

(Sec. 216) Authorizes additional FY 1996 NASA appropriations for Mission to Planet Earth, subject to certain obligations and expenditure requirements.

Chapter 2: Restructuring the National Aeronautics and Space Administration - Directs the Administrator of NASA to contract for an asset-based review of NASA. Prohibits closure of any NASA field centers prior to such review.

Chapter 3: Limitations and Special Authority - Sets forth funds uses, limitations, and special authorities, including limitations on transfers to Russia.

Subtitle C: Miscellaneous Provisions - Amends Federal law to include reentry vehicles and related launch operations within the scope of commercial space launch activities.

(Sec. 242) Authorizes appropriations for the Office of Air and Space Commercialization.

(Sec. 243) Requires independent cost analysis of specified NASA projects.

(Sec. 244) Requires the Administrator to delay, on the request of a private sector entity for a period from one day up to five years, unrestricted public disclosure of technical data developed by research funded jointly by NASA and that entity under specified conditions.

(Sec. 245) Directs the Administrator to: (1) establish within the Office of Space Access and Technology a procurement demonstration program; and (2) coordinate a technology procurement initiative.

(Sec. 246) Requires the Administrator to determine, prior to new facility construction or lease, that no existing NASA or other Federal facility is appropriate for the intended use.

(Sec. 247) Directs NASA to purchase space science data from the private sector.

(Sec. 248) Directs the Administrator to: (1) transmit to the Congress a report on Mission to Planet Earth; (2) prepare for transition from the Federal operation, or Federal management of contracted operation, of space transportation systems to the Federal purchase of commercial space transportation services for all nonemergency launch requirements; and (3) request proposals for a single prime contractor for the space shuttle program.

(Sec. 250) Prohibits, notwithstanding any other provision of law, funds obligation for FY 1996 for NASA aeronautics research and technology programs in excess of amounts authorized by this title, except as fully reimbursed from non-Federal sources through payment of research costs at NASA facilities.

(Sec. 251) Amends the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorization Act, Fiscal Year 1993 to make the launch voucher demonstration program permanent.

(Sec. 252) Directs the Administrator to provide for the privatization of NASA microgravity parabolic flight operations.

(Sec. 253) Prohibits, with exceptions, NASA financial assistance to a person who received nonmerit-based Federal funding.

(Sec. 254) Prohibits the use of funds authorized by this title for lobbying activities.

(Sec. 256) Amends the Unitary Wind Tunnel Plan Act of 1949 to include hypersonic activities.

(Sec. 257) Requires the Administrator, whenever feasible, to meet NASA facilities needs by selecting abandoned and underused buildings, grounds, and facilities in depressed communities.

Title III: Department of Energy - Department of Energy Civilian Research and Development Act of 1995 - Authorizes FY 1996 and FY 1997 appropriations for Department of Energy: (1) energy supply research and development activities; (2) general science and research activities; (3) fossil energy research and development activities; and (4) energy conservation research and development activities.

(Sec. 304) Sets forth funding limitations.

(Sec. 306) Establishes requirements for: (1) funding assistance merit review; and (2) capital project and construction reporting.

(Sec. 309) Directs the Secretary of Energy to enter into negotiations with the European Organization for Nuclear Research concerning U.S. participation in the planning and construction of the Large Hadron Collider.

(Sec. 310) Prohibits any funds authorized by this title from being used for lobbying activities.

(Sec. 311) Excludes from Department of Energy financial assistance for five years any person (subject to exception) who received Federal funds for a project that was not subjected to a competitive, merit-based award process.

(Sec. 312) Allows, subject to further appropriations, unobligated funds previously appropriated for the Clean Coal Technology program to be used to pay costs associated with the termination of energy supply research and development, general science and research, fossil energy research and development, and energy conservation research and development programs, projects, and activities.

Title IV: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Authorization Act of 1995 - Subtitle A: Atmospheric, Weather, and Satellite Programs - Authorizes appropriations for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for: (1) National Weather Service (NWS) operations and research and public warning and forecast; (2) construction, repair, and modification regarding new and existing weather forecast offices; (3) climate and air quality research; (4) atmospheric research; (5) the Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program; (6) satellite observing systems; (7) environmental data and information services.

Amends the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Authorization Act of 1992 to modify requirements regarding: (1) the closure, consolidation, automation, or relocation of any National Weather Service field office. Replaces provisions requiring maintaining a liaison officer for at least two years after such a field office action with provisions requiring maintaining a transition program for at least two years; and (2) the duties of the Modernization Transition Committee.

Mandates: (1) steps to ensure that certain Department of Defense NEXRADs function as fully committed, reliable elements of the national weather radar network, operating with the same standards, quality, and availability as the National Weather Service-operated NEXRADs; (2) that certain NEXRADs operated by the Department of Defense be considered as integral parts of the National Weather Radar Network; and (3) a report to specified congressional committees regarding the NEXRAD Network radar coverage pattern and areas of inadequate radar coverage.

Subtitle B: Marine Research - Authorizes appropriations for NOAA for: (1) mapping and charting; (2) geodesy; (3) observation and prediction; (4) the Circulatory Survey Program; (5) ocean and earth science; (6) estuarine and coastal assessment; (7) the National Status and Trends Program, the Strategic Environmental Assessment Program, and the Hazardous Materials Response Program; (8) the Damage Assessment Program; and (9) the Coastal Ocean Program.

(Sec. 422) Authorizes appropriations for NOAA for marine prediction research.

Amends the National Sea Grant College Program Act to authorize appropriations to carry out provisions relating to: (1) program or project grants and contracts; (2) fellowships; and (3) administration of the National Sea Grant College Program. Revises the definition of "field related to ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources."

(Sec. 423) Declares that it is the sense of the Congress that NOAA should expand its efforts to develop interagency agreements to further the use of defense-related technologies, data, and other resources to support its oceanic missions. Mandates a report to specified congressional committees on the feasibility of expanding the use of those resources for such purposes.

Subtitle C: Program Support - Authorizes appropriations for NOAA for: (1) executive direction and administrative activities; (2) central administrative support; and (3) retired pay. Mandates contracts (including multiyear contracts) for the use of vessels to conduct oceanographic and fisheries research, monitoring, enforcement, and management, and to acquire other data necessary to carry out NOAA missions. Authorizes appropriations for NOAA for: (1) marine services; (2) aircraft services; and (3) facilities repairs and renovations.

Subtitle D: Streamlining of Operations - Prohibits appropriating funds for 16 specified programs, centers, and activities, including: (1) the National Undersea Research Program; (2) the Fleet Modernization, Shipbuilding, and Construction Account; and (3) Regional Climate Centers. Mandates a report to specified congressional committees certifying that, by a specified date, all 16 will be terminated.

Repeals provisions of: (1) the National Sea Grant College Program Act relating to marine policy fellowships; and (2) the Sea Grant Program Improvement Act of 1976 relating to the sea grant international program. Repeals the NOAA Fleet Modernization Act.

(Sec. 442) Declares that, unless specifically authorized by Act of Congress, no funds are authorized to be appropriated for any fiscal year after FY 1996 for carrying out programs, projects, and activities for which funds are authorized by this Act. Limits the total dollar amounts: (1) authorized to be appropriated for FY 1996 by this or any other Act for NOAA for all activities associated with operations, research, and facilities; and (2) authorized to be used for NOAA travel and related expenses.

(Sec. 443) Limits the number of commissioned officers on the NOAA FY 1996 active list. Declares that no commissioned officers are authorized for any fiscal year after FY 1996. Authorizes related separations, making separated officers eligible only for severance (not separation) pay. Authorizes: (1) with the approval of the Secretary of Transportation, transfer of separated officers to the U.S. Coast Guard; and (2) with the approval of NOAA's Administrator, NOAA employment of separated officers as civil service members. Repeals related specified provisions of Federal law.

Subtitle E: Miscellaneous - Makes it unlawful for any unauthorized person to remove, move, damage, or interfere with any National Data Buoy Center weather data buoy. Provides for civil monetary penalties and rewards.

(Sec. 452) Makes the Secretary of Commerce, through the NWS, responsible for: (1) forecasts, serving as the sole official source of weather warnings; (2) issuance of storm warnings; (3) collection, exchange, and distribution of meteorological, hydrological, climatic, and oceanographic data and information; and (4) preparation of hydrometeorological guidance and core forecast information. Prohibits the NWS from competing (or assisting other entities in competing) with the private sector when a service is or can be provided by commercial enterprise unless the private sector is unwilling or unable to provide the service and the service provides vital weather warnings and forecasts for the protection of lives and property of the general public. Removes existing provisions relating to the duties of the Secretary regarding weather forecasting. Modifies provisions relating to NWS appropriations and estimates. Mandates a report to specified congressional committees detailing all NWS activities not conforming to this paragraph and outlining a timetable for their termination.

(Sec. 453) Excludes from consideration for NOAA financial assistance any person who received funds appropriated from any Federal funding source for a project that was not subjected to a competitive, merit-based award process. Makes this exclusion effective for a specified period after the person received the funds. Exempts from the exclusion members of a class specified by law for which assistance is awarded according to a formula provided by law.

(Sec. 454) Prohibits funds authorized by this Act from being available for any activity whose purpose is to influence legislation before the Congress.

(Sec. 455) Mandates a review and report to specified congressional committees on NOAA laboratories.

(Sec. 456) Mandates conveyance of the National Marine Fisheries Service laboratory in Gloucester, Massachusetts, to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

(Sec. 457) Mandates cleanup of wastes, dumps, storage tanks, property, hazardous conditions, and contaminants (including petroleum products and derivatives), on lands NOAA and its predecessor agencies transferred, or is obligated to transfer, to local entities or landowners on the Pribilof Islands, Alaska, under the Fur Seal Act of 1966.

(Sec. 458) Requires the establishment and maintenance in NOAA of the Ocean Applications Branch to make oceanographic and other information developed by the Department of Defense Fleet Numerical Meteorology and Oceanography Center available for private, educational, and government use. Requires that it be the goal of the Secretary of Commerce to support the Branch through user fees. Prohibits termination of the Branch before it fully funds its operations through private sources, including user fees, or fiscal year 1996, whichever comes first.

Title V: Environmental Protection Agency - Environmental Research, Development, and Demonstration Authorization Act of 1995 - Authorizes appropriations to the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for FY 1996 for the Office of Research and Development for specified environmental research, development, and demonstration activities. Specifies that no funds are authorized to be appropriated for: (1) the Environmental Technology Initiative, the Climate Change Action Plan, or indoor air pollution research; (2) carrying out programs and activities after FY 1996; or (3) carrying out activities in FY 1996 for which sums are not specifically authorized to be appropriated by this title.

(Sec. 504) Directs the Administrator to assign to the Assistant Administrator for Research and Development the duties of: (1) developing a strategic plan for scientific and technical research activities throughout EPA; (2) integrating that strategic plan into ongoing EPA planning activities; and (3) reviewing all EPA research to ensure the research is of high quality and does not duplicate any other research being conducted by EPA. Directs the Assistant Administrator to report annually to the Administrator and specified congressional committees on EPA research that is duplicative or not of sufficiently high quality.

(Sec. 505) Prohibits the use of funds authorized by this title for lobbying activities.

(Sec. 506) Requires the Administrator to exclude from consideration for awards of financial assistance made by the Office after FY 1995 persons who received funds appropriated for a fiscal year after FY 1995 from any Federal funding source for a project that was not subjected to a competitive, merit-based award process. Makes the exclusion effective for a five-year period after the person receives such funds. Exempts awards to persons who are members of a class specified by law for which assistance is awarded according to a prescribed formula.

(Sec. 507) Requires the Administrator to ensure that any graduate fellowship award to a student selected after the enactment of this Act is used only to support research that would further missions of the Office in fields in which there exists or is projected to exist a shortage in the number of scientists.

Title VI: Technology - Subtitle A: Technology Administration - American Technology Advancement Act of 1995 - Authorizes appropriations to the Secretary of Commerce for: (1) the Office of the Under Secretary for Technology - Office of Technology Policy; and (2) the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).

(Sec. 603) Amends the National Institute of Standards and Technology Act to: (1) increase National Institute of Standards and Technology Visiting Committee membership from nine members to 15 members; (2) authorize certain transportation services; and (3) increase the size of the postdoctoral program.

(Sec. 604) Amends the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 to: (1) eliminate the Secretary of Commerce's authority to expand the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award categories; and (2) increase the maximum number of annual subcategory awards from two to four.

(Sec. 605) Extends indefinitely a specified personnel management demonstration project under the National Bureau of Standards Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1987.

(Sec. 606) Amends the Fastener Quality Act with regard to heat mill certification, commingling, and minor nonconformance.

(Sec. 607) Prohibits funds authorized by this title from being used for lobbying activities.

(Sec. 608) Specifies that: (1) this title is the only authorization for all FY 1996 activities under this title; and (2) no funds are authorized for activities under this title after FY 1996 unless they are specifically authorized by Act of Congress with respect to such fiscal year.

(Sec. 609) Makes a person who received a Federal noncompetitive nonmerit award after FY 1995 ineligible for financial assistance from the Under Secretary for Technology - Office of Technology Policy or NIST. (Exempts certain class-based awards.)

(Sec. 610) Requires NIST to report to the Congress regarding conformity assessment implementation.

(Sec. 611) States that this Act shall not preclude further authorization of appropriations for the Manufacturing Extension Partnerships program.

Title VII: United States Fire Administration - Fire Administration Authorization Act of 1995 - Amends the Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974 to authorize appropriations for FY 1996 and 1997.

(Sec. 703) Prohibits Federal funds for Department of the Army housing unless it is protected by hard-wired smoke detectors by the earlier of the date of occupancy by the first Federal employees who were not occupants as of October 25, 1992, or October 25, 1998.

(Sec. 704) Permits successor fire safety standards to be used as guidelines in addition to National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard 74, NFPA Standard 13 or 13-R, or NFPA Standard 101 (Life Safety Code) for installation of hard-wired, single-station smoke detectors or automatic sprinkler systems in: (1) places of public accommodation affecting commerce; and (2) federally-assisted buildings.

(Sec. 705) Requires the Administrator of the U.S. Fire Administration to report to the Congress: (1) at least 60 days in advance of the termination or transfer to a private sector entity of any significant function of the Administration; and (2) on the manner in which the Administration intends to implement the budgetary reduction represented by the difference between the amount appropriated to it for FY 1996 and the amount requested in the President's FY 1996 budget request.

Title VIII: Buy American - Declares that it is the sense of the Congress that any recipient of a grant under this Act, or under any amendment made by this Act, should purchase, when available and cost-effective, American made equipment and products when spending grant monies. Mandates notice to grant recipients.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

House Action(s)

Sep 27, 95:
Referred to the Committee on Science, and in addition to the Committees on Resources, and 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.
Oct 3, 95:
Referred to the Subcommittee on Energy and Power, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Chairman.
Oct 3, 95:
Referred to the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Hazardous Materials, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Chairman.
Sep 27, 95:
Referred to the Committee on Science, and in addition to the Committees on Resources, and 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.
Sep 28, 95:
Executive Comment Requested from Commerce.
Sep 28, 95:
Referred to the Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife and Oceans.
Sep 27, 95:
Referred to the Committee on Science, and in addition to the Committees on Resources, and 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.
Sep 29, 95:
Rules Committee Resolution H. Res. 234 Reported to House.
Oct 11, 95:
HA 831 Amendment Offered by Representative Brown, of CA.
HA 831 On agreeing to the Brown (CA) amendment (A001) Agreed to by voice vote.
HA 832 Amendment Offered by Representative Dunn.
HA 832 On agreeing to the Dunn amendment (A002) Agreed to by voice vote.
HA 833 Amendment Offered by Representative Traficant.
HA 833 On agreeing to the Traficant amendment (A003) Agreed to by voice vote.
HA 834 Amendment Offered by Representative Scott.
HA 834 On agreeing to the Scott amendment (A004) Failed by recorded vote: 139 - 281 (Roll no. 701).
HA 843 Amendment Offered by Representative Doyle.
HA 835 Amendment Offered by Representative Young, of AK.
HA 837 Amendment Offered by Representative Traficant.
HA 843 On agreeing to the Doyle amendment (A013) Failed by recorded vote: 173 - 245 (Roll no. 706).
HA 845 Amendment Offered by Representative Furse.
HA 841 Amendment Offered by Representative Richardson.
HA 844 Amendment Offered by Representative Klug.
HA 845 On agreeing to the Furse amendment (A015) Failed by voice vote.
Rule H. Res. 234 passed House.
Called up by House under the provisions of rule H. Res. 234.
Oct 12, 95:
HA 853 Amendment Offered by Representative Cramer.
HA 851 Amendment Offered by Representative Saxton.
HA 853 On agreeing to the Cramer amendment (A023) Agreed to by voice vote.
HA 855 Amendment Offered by Representative Lofgren.
HA 855 On agreeing to the Lofgren amendment (A025) as modified Agreed to by voice vote.
HA 857 On agreeing to the Lofgren amendment (A027) Failed by recorded vote: 199 - 215 (Roll no. 709).
HA 847 Amendment Offered by Representative Walker.
HA 863 Amendment Offered by Representative Brown, of CA.
Considered by House as unfinished business.
Passed House (Amended) by Yea-Nay Vote: 248 - 161 (Roll no. 713).

Senate Action(s)

Oct 17, 95:
Received in the Senate and read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce.

(Source: Library of Congress)


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