[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[H.R. 3479 Introduced in House (IH)]






108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 3479

 To provide for the control and eradication of the brown tree snake on 
the island of Guam and the prevention of the introduction of the brown 
tree snake to other areas of the United States, and for other purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            November 7, 2003

 Ms. Bordallo (for herself, Mr. Abercrombie, and Mr. Case) introduced 
 the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Resources, 
  and in addition to the Committee on Agriculture, 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 provide for the control and eradication of the brown tree snake on 
the island of Guam and the prevention of the introduction of the brown 
tree snake to other areas of the United States, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Brown Tree Snake Control and 
Eradication Act of 2003''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress finds the following:
            (1) The brown tree snake, an invasive species, is believed 
        to have been introduced to the island of Guam as a passive 
        stowaway in a military cargo ship that moved materiel after 
        World War II. The historic range of the brown tree snake is 
        portions of Indonesia, New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, and 
        Australia.
            (2) Upon arrival in Guam, the brown tree snake encountered 
        an abundant food supply and an absence of natural predators.
            (3) The brown tree snake's accidental introduction to Guam 
        placed the species beyond its historic range, triggering a 
        cascade of extinctions and an ecological disaster. The brown 
        tree snake has been the principal cause of the destruction of 
        Guam's native bird population and has imposed significant 
        stress on Guam's economic and agricultural interests, thereby 
        harming the integrity and environmental stability of Guam's 
        ecosystems and economy.
            (4) The presence of the brown tree snake is a documented 
        economic and human health hazard in Guam. The brown tree snake 
        occurs in Guam at extremely high densities. Due to its high 
        abundance the brown tree snake has been accidentally 
        transported from Guam to other sites worldwide through infested 
        civilian and military vessels and cargo. The brown tree snake 
        is a growing threat to the biodiversity, economy, and human 
        health within the Pacific region. The brown tree snake poses a 
        direct, significant, and growing threat of dispersal to other 
        areas outside of its historic range, including the Commonwealth 
        of the Northern Mariana Islands, the State of Hawaii, and the 
        mainland of the United States.
            (5) A number of Federal agencies, including the Department 
        of the Interior, the Department of Agriculture, and the 
        Department of Defense, and the governments of Guam, Hawaii, the 
        Northern Mariana Islands, and the Freely Associated States have 
        operational, environmental, economic, and human health 
        interests in and responsibilities for controlling the brown 
        tree snake.
            (6) The present Brown Tree Snake Control Committee was 
        established in response to section 1209 of the Nonindigenous 
        Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990 (16 U.S.C. 
        4728), and the multi-agency Memorandum of Agreement on Brown 
        Tree Snake Control, originally signed in 1992 and renewed in 
        1999, will expire in March 2004. It is a purpose of this Act to 
        legislatively establish the Brown Tree Snake Control and 
        Eradication Committee to ensure the ongoing activities and 
        enhance the effectiveness of the present Committee.
            (7) Annual funding for brown tree snake control and 
        research has come from relatively few Federal agencies, which 
        have then distributed those funds amongst a number of agencies 
        actually conducting the work. While current funding is 
        commendable on the part of these agencies, the absence of 
        direct funding through the agencies actually conducting the 
        work has impaired the progress of both operational and research 
        efforts by limiting stability in staffing and year-to-year 
        program implementation. It is a purpose of this Act to 
        authorize funding for brown tree snake control, interdiction, 
        research, and eradication though and by the agencies performing 
        the specific tasks.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
            (1) Brown tree snake.--The term ``brown tree snake'' means 
        the species of the snake Boiga irregularis that is an invasive 
        species in Guam and a threat to spread elsewhere.
            (2) Committee.--The term ``Committee'' means the Brown Tree 
        Snake Control and Eradication Committee established under 
        section 6.
            (3) Compact of free association.--The term ``Compact of 
        Free Association'' means a Compact of Free Association entered 
        into between the United States and the government of a Freely 
        Associated State.
            (4) Freely associated state.--The term ``Freely Associated 
        State'' means the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of 
        Micronesia, or the Republic of the Marshall Islands.
            (5) Introduction.--The terms ``introduce'' and 
        ``introduction'' refer to the expansion of brown tree snakes 
        outside of the range where this species is endemic.
            (6) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary concerned'' means--
                    (A) the Secretary of the Interior, with respect to 
                matters under the jurisdiction of the Department of the 
                Interior; and
                    (B) the Secretary of Agriculture, with respect to 
                matters under the jurisdiction of the Department of 
                Agriculture.
            (7) Secretaries.--The term ``Secretaries'' means both the 
        Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Agriculture.
            (8) Territorial.--The term ``territorial'', when used to 
        refer to government, means the Government of Guam, the 
        Government of American Samoa, or the Government of the 
        Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
            (9) United states.--The term ``United States'', when used 
        in the geographic sense, means the several States, the District 
        of Colombia, American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the 
        Northern Mariana Islands, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the 
        United States Virgin Islands, the Freely Associated States, any 
        other possession of the United States, and any waters within 
        the jurisdiction of the United States.

SEC. 4. STATEMENT OF POLICY REGARDING FEDERAL OBLIGATIONS RELATED TO 
              BROWN TREE SNAKES INTRODUCTION, CONTROL, AND ERADICATION.

    (a) Sense of Congress.--It is the sense of Congress that there 
exists a need for improved and better coordinated control, 
interdiction, research, and eradication of the brown tree snake on the 
part of the United States and other interested parties.
    (b) United States Policy.--It is the policy of the United States to 
fund and support coordinated and concerted programs and activities to 
control, interdict, and eradicate the brown tree snake in Guam and to 
prevent the introduction of brown tree snakes to other areas of the 
United States.
    (c) Preventing Introduction.--Notwithstanding any other provision 
of law, to the extent practicable, no Federal agency may authorize, 
fund, or carry out any action that would likely cause or promote the 
introduction or spread of the brown tree snake in the United States. 
All Federal agencies must consider brown tree snake interdiction 
issues, to the extent possible, when planning any activity that may 
cause the accidental introduction of brown tree snakes to uninfested 
areas in the United States.
    (d) Control and Eradication.--All Federal agencies, to the extent 
possible, that manage lands where brown tree snakes occur shall fund 
the control and eradication of this species.
    (e) Access.--All Federal agencies, to the extent possible, shall 
facilitate access to Federal, State, and territorial employees, or 
their designees, who conduct control, interdiction, or research 
regarding brown tree snakes on lands and facilities under their 
jurisdiction.
    (f) Cooperative Support.--All Federal agencies, to the extent 
possible, shall provide cooperative support, such as office space, 
laboratory space, laboratory animal holding facilities, kennel 
facilities, short- and long-term housing for staff, power, water, and 
communication lines, to Federal agencies conducting brown tree snake 
control, interdiction, research, and eradication.
    (g) Guidelines.--The Brown Tree Snake Control and Eradication 
Committee shall develop, in consultation with the Invasive Species 
Council established pursuant to Executive Order No. 13112 (42 U.S.C. 
4321 note), guidelines for Federal agencies to analyze their actions 
and carry out their duties under this section.

SEC. 5. BROWN TREE SNAKE CONTROL, INTERDICTION, RESEARCH AND 
              ERADICATION.

    (a) Funding Authority.--Subject to the availability of 
appropriations to carry out this section, the Secretaries shall provide 
funds to support brown tree snake control, interdiction, research, and 
eradication efforts carried out by the Department of the Interior and 
the Department of Agriculture, other Federal agencies, States, 
territorial governments, local governments, and private sector 
entities. Funds may be provided through grants, contracts, reimbursable 
agreements, or other legal mechanisms available to the Secretaries for 
the transfer of Federal funds.
    (b) Authorized Activities.--Brown tree snake control, interdiction, 
research, and eradication efforts authorized by this section shall 
include at a minimum the following:
            (1) Expansion of science-based eradication and control 
        programs in Guam to reduce the undesirable impact of the brown 
        tree snake in Guam and reduce the risk of the introduction or 
        spread of brown tree snakes to areas in the United States in 
        which the brown tree snake is not established.
            (2) Expansion of interagency and intergovernmental rapid 
        response teams in Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern 
        Mariana Islands, and Hawaii to assist local governments with 
        detecting brown tree snakes and incipient brown tree snake 
        populations.
            (3) Expansion of science-based efforts to protect and 
        restore native wildlife in Guam or elsewhere in the United 
        States damaged by the brown tree snake.
            (4) Continuation, expansion, and provision of sustained 
        research funding for the Animal and Plant Health Inspection 
        Service, Wildlife Services, National Wildlife Research Center 
        of the Department of Agriculture related to brown tree snakes.
            (5) Continuation, expansion, and provision of sustained 
        research funding related to brown tree snakes for the Fort 
        Collins Science Center of the United States Geological Survey 
        and other research institutions located in areas affected by 
        the brown tree snake.
            (6) Expansion of long-term research into chemical and 
        biological control techniques that could lead to large-scale 
        reduction of brown tree snake populations in Guam or other 
        sites where the brown tree snake might become established.
            (7) Expansion of short, medium, and long-term research, 
        funded by all Federal agencies interested in or affected by 
        brown tree snakes, into interdiction, detection, and early 
        control of brown tree snakes.
            (8) Provision of planning assistance for the construction 
        or renovation of centralized multi-agency facilities in Guam to 
        support Federal, State, and territorial brown tree snake 
        control, interdiction, research and eradication efforts, 
        including office space, laboratory space, animal holding 
        facilities, and snake detector dog kennels.
            (9) Provision of technical assistance to the Freely 
        Associated States on matters related to brown tree snakes 
        through the mechanisms contained within a Compact of Free 
        Association dealing with environmental, quarantine, economic, 
        and human health issues.
    (c) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretaries to carry out this section (other than 
subsection (b)(8)) the following amounts:
            (1) For activities conducted through the Animal and Plant 
        Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services, Operations, not 
        more than $2,600,000 for each of the fiscal years 2005 through 
        2010.
            (2) For activities conducted through the Animal and Plant 
        Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services, National Wildlife 
        Research Center, Methods Development, not more than $2,200,000 
        for each of the fiscal years 2005 through 2010.
            (3) For activities conducted through the Office of Insular 
        Affairs, not more than $4,600,000 for each of the fiscal years 
        2005 through 2010.
            (4) For activities conducted through the Fish and Wildlife 
        Service, not more than $2,600,000 for each of the fiscal years 
        2005 through 2010.
            (5) For activities conducted through the United States 
        Geological Survey, Biological Resources, not more than 
        $1,300,000 for each of the fiscal years 2005 through 2010.
    (d) Construction Planning Assistance.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to carry out subsection (b)(8) the following amounts:
            (1) To the Secretary of Agriculture, not more than 
        $2,300,000 for each of the fiscal years 2005 through 2010.
            (2) To the Secretary of the Interior, not more than 
        $2,300,000 for each of the fiscal years 2005 through 2010.

SEC. 6. LEGAL MECHANISMS TO CONTROL THE INTRODUCTION AND SPREAD OF 
              BROWN TREE SNAKES.

    (a) Designation of Agricultural Pest.--The brown tree snake is 
hereby designated as an agricultural pest in the United States under 
section 28 of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act 
(7 U.S.C. 136w-3).
    (b) Quarantine Protocols.--Not later than two years after of the 
date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretaries shall establish, by 
regulation, a system of pre-departure quarantine protocols for persons 
traveling from, and baggage, cargo and other items being shipped from, 
Guam and other United States locations where brown tree snakes may have 
become established to prevent the introduction or spread of the brown 
tree snake. Under such system, Federal quarantine, natural resource, 
conservation, and law enforcement officers and inspectors may enforce 
State and territorial laws regarding the illegal importation, 
possession, or introduction of brown tree snakes. These efforts shall 
be conducted in cooperation with the appropriate State and territorial 
quarantine, natural resource, conservation, and law enforcement 
officers.
    (c) Nonmailable Matter.--Consistent with subsection (c), brown tree 
snakes constitute nonmailable matter under section 3015 of title 39, 
United States Code.

SEC. 7. BROWN TREE SNAKE CONTROL AND ERADICATION COMMITTEE.

    (a) Establishment.--The Secretaries shall establish a committee, to 
be known as the Brown Tree Snake Control and Eradication Committee, for 
the purpose of providing coordination among Federal agencies, and 
between the United States Government and State, territorial, and local 
governments, with respect to efforts related to brown tree snake 
control, interdiction, research, and eradication in Guam, the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Hawaii, the Freely 
Associated States, and other areas of the United States in which the 
brown tree snake is, or may be, introduced.
    (b) Membership.--
            (1) Voting members.--The voting members of the Committee 
        shall consist of at least one representative from each of the 
        following agencies:
                    (A) The Office of Insular Affairs, appointed by the 
                Secretary of the Interior.
                    (B) The United States Fish and Wildlife Service, 
                appointed by the Secretary of the Interior.
                    (C) The United State Geological Survey, appointed 
                by the Secretary of the Interior.
                    (D) The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, 
                Wildlife Services, Operations Branch, appointed by the 
                Secretary of Agriculture.
                    (E) The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, 
                Wildlife Services, National Wildlife Research Center, 
                appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture.
                    (F) The Department of Commerce, appointed by the 
                Secretary of Commerce.
                    (G) The Department of Transportation, appointed by 
                the Secretary of Transportation.
                    (H) The Department of Homeland Security, appointed 
                by the Secretary of Homeland Security.
                    (I) The Armed Forces Pest Management Board of the 
                Department of Defense, appointed by the Secretary of 
                Defense.
                    (J) The Department of the Air Force, appointed by 
                the Secretary of the Air Force.
                    (K) The Department of the Navy, appointed by the 
                Secretary of the Navy.
                    (L) The Department of Agriculture of the Government 
                of Guam, appointed by the Governor of Guam.
                    (M) The Department of Land and Natural Resources of 
                the State of Hawaii, appointed by the Governor of 
                Hawaii.
                    (N) The Department of Agriculture of the State of 
                Hawaii, appointed by the Governor of Hawaii.
                    (O) The Department of Land and Natural Resources of 
                the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, 
                appointed by the Governor of the Commonwealth of the 
                Northern Mariana Islands.
                    (P) Such additional voting members as may be 
                designated under paragraph (3).
            (2) Nonvoting members.--Nonvoting membership to the 
        Committee shall be extended to representatives of the Freely 
        Associated States as follows:
                    (A) The Republic of Palau, appointed by the 
                President of Palau.
                    (B) The Federated States of Micronesia, appointed 
                by the President of the Federated States of Micronesia.
                    (C) The Republic of the Marshall Islands, appointed 
                by the President of the Marshall Islands.
                    (D) Such additional non-voting members as may be 
                designated under paragraph (3).
            (3) Additional members.--With the concurrence of a majority 
        of the voting members of the Committee, the chairperson of the 
        Committee may designate additional voting and nonvoting members 
        to the Committee from Federal, State, territorial, or local 
        government agencies, and private sector entities with 
        significant responsibilities concerning brown tree snake 
        control, interdiction, research, and eradication.
            (4) Term.--The term of a voting or nonvoting member's 
        representative on the Committee shall be three years. A member 
        may be reappointed for additional terms. Vacancies shall be 
        filed in the same manner as the original appointment.
            (5) Committee meetings.--The Committee shall meet at least 
        annually, at the call of the chairperson.
    (c) Duties and Functions of the Committee.--The Committee shall 
ensure that Federal, State, territorial, and local agency efforts 
concerning the brown tree snake are coordinated, effective, 
complementary, and cost-effective. Specific functions of the Committee 
include the following:
            (1) Evaluate Federal, State, and territorial activities, 
        programs and policies that are likely to cause or promote the 
        introduction or spread of the brown tree snake in the United 
        States and recommend governmental actions to minimize the risk 
        of introduction or further spread of the brown tree snake.
            (2) Recommend activities, programs, and policies to reduce 
        and eventually eradicate the brown tree snake in Guam or other 
        areas within the United States where the snake may be 
        established and to monitor the implementation of those 
        activities, programs, and policies.
            (3) Within 18 months after the date of the enactment of 
        this Act, revise the Brown Tree Snake Control Plan that was 
        prepared by the Brown Tree Snake Control Committee of the 
        Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force, as required by section 
        1209 of the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and 
        Control Act of 1990 (16 U.S.C. 4728), to coordinate Federal, 
        State, territorial, and local government efforts to control, 
        interdict, eradicate or conduct research on the brown tree 
        snake, and subsequently revise and update this Plan every five 
        years thereafter.
            (4) Develop and submit to Congress a biennial report 
        containing the following:
                    (A) Description of progress that will lead toward 
                large-scale population reduction or eradication of the 
                brown tree snake in Guam or other sites that are 
                infested by the brown tree snake.
                    (B) Description of interdiction and other 
                activities that will reduce the risk of introduction of 
                brown tree snakes or other nonindigenous snake species 
                in Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana 
                Islands, Hawaii, and American Samoa.
                    (C) Description of applied and basic research that 
                will lead to improved brown tree snake control, 
                interdiction and eradication efforts conducted by 
                Federal, State, territorial, and local governments.
                    (D) Programs and activities for brown tree snake 
                control, interdiction, research and eradication that 
                have been funded, implemented, and planned by Federal, 
                State, territorial, and local governments.
                    (E) A list of priorities, ranked in high, medium, 
                and low categories, of Federal, State, territorial, and 
                local efforts and programs in the following areas:
                            (i) Control.
                            (ii) Interdiction.
                            (iii) Research.
                            (iv) Eradication.
                    (F) An assessment of current funding shortfalls and 
                future funding needs to support Federal, State, 
                territorial, and local government efforts to control, 
                interdict, eradicate, or conduct research on the brown 
                tree snake.
                    (G) An assessment of regulatory limitations that 
                hinder Federal, State, territorial, and local 
                government efforts to control, interdict, eradicate or 
                conduct research on the brown tree snake.
    (d) Committee Chairperson and Coordinator.--
            (1) Appointment.--The Secretaries shall--
                    (A) appoint a member of the Committee to serve as 
                chairperson of the Committee, with a term of three 
                years; and
                    (B) hire a Federal Interagency Brown Tree Snake 
                Coordinator to serve on the staff of the chairperson.
            (2) Duties.--The chairperson shall ensure that Federal, 
        State, territorial, and local agency efforts concerning the 
        brown tree snake are maximally coordinated, effective, 
        complementary, and cost-effective through the Committee. 
        Specific duties of the chairperson include the following:
                    (A) Coordinate and oversee the meetings of the 
                Committee.
                    (B) Coordinate and oversee the Committee's work to 
                produce the biennial brown tree snake control, 
                research, interdiction, and eradication reporting 
                documents for Congress.
                    (C) Coordinate and oversee revision of the Brown 
                Tree Snake Control Plan.
                    (D) Coordinate and oversee preparation of other 
                reports and documents dealing with brown tree snakes.
                    (E) Under direction of the Secretaries, and in 
                collaboration with the Committee, evaluate Federal, 
                State, and territorial activities, programs, and 
                policies that are likely to--
                            (i) cause or promote the introduction or 
                        spread of the brown tree snake in the United 
                        States and recommend actions by Federal, State, 
                        territorial, or Freely Associated State 
                        governments to prevent the introduction and 
                        spread of brown tree snakes; and
                            (ii) reduce and eventually eradicate the 
                        brown tree snake in Guam and in any other areas 
                        in the United States where the snake may be 
                        established.
                    (F) Monitor the implementation of those policies by 
                Federal, State, territorial, and local agencies and 
                other persons.
                    (G) Provide, or arrange for the provision of, 
                technical assistance dealing with brown tree snake 
                control, interdiction, research, and eradication to 
                Federal, State, territorial, and Freely Associated 
                State governments.
                    (H) Serve as the primary contact for the 
                Secretaries for inquires or requests by Congress and 
                the Administration regarding brown tree snakes.
                    (I) Serve as the primary representative for the 
                Secretaries on brown tree snake issues to the National 
                Invasive Species Council and provide assistance to the 
                National Invasive Species Council related to brown tree 
                snakes.
            (3) Limitation.--Notwithstanding paragraph (2), the 
        chairperson shall not have control over funding decisions or 
        spending authority with respect to funds provided by any of the 
        Committee members for the purposes of this Act. Federal and 
        other agencies represented on the Committee shall retain 
        control over decisions regarding their respective funds, 
        although the chairperson may participate in planning and 
        implementation of activities with respect to such funds.
    (e) Staff.--The Secretaries may hire staff to assist the Committee 
and the chairperson in carrying out their respective duties and 
functions.
    (f) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to each of the Secretaries not more than $450,000 for each 
of the fiscal years 2005 through 2010 to carry out this section.

SEC. 8. MISCELLANEOUS MATTERS.

    (a) Availability of Appropriated Funds.--Amounts appropriated under 
this Act shall remain available until expended.
    (b) Administrative Expenses.--Of the amounts appropriated to carry 
out this Act for a fiscal year, the Secretaries may expend not more 
than five percent to cover the administrative expenses necessary to 
carry out this Act.
                                 <all>