[House Report 104-57]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]



                                                                       
104th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 1st Session                                                     104-57
_______________________________________________________________________


 
 COMMERCIAL VEHICLES IN THE DELAWARE WATER GAP NATIONAL RECREATION AREA

_______________________________________________________________________


 February 28, 1995.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______


  Mr. Young of Alaska, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 536]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 536) to extend indefinitely the authority of the 
Secretary of the Interior to collect a commercial operation fee 
in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, and for 
other purposes, having considered the same, report favorably 
thereon with amendments and recommend that the bill as amended 
do pass.
  The amendments are as follows:
  Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert in lieu 
thereof the following:

SECTION 1. PROHIBITION OF COMMERCIAL VEHICLES.

  (a) In General.--Effective at noon on September 30, 2005, the use of 
Highway 209 within Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area by 
commercial vehicles, when such use is not connected with the operation 
of the recreation area, is prohibited, except as provided in subsection 
(b).
  (b) Local Business Use Protected.--Subsection (a) does not apply with 
respect to the use of commercial vehicles to serve businesses located 
within or in the vicinity of the recreation area, as determined by the 
Secretary.
  (c) Conforming Provisions.--(1) Paragraphs (1) through (3) of the 
third undesignated paragraph under the heading ``ADMINISTRATIVE 
PROVISIONS'' in chapter VII of title I of Public Law 98-63 (97 Stat. 
329) are repealed, effective September 30, 2005.
  (2) Prior to noon on September 30, 2005, the Secretary shall collect 
and utilize a commercial use fee from commercial vehicles in accordance 
with paragraphs (1) through (3) of such third undesignated paragraph. 
Such fee shall not exceed $25 per trip.

  Amend the title so as to read:

    A bill to prohibit the use of Highway 209 within the 
Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area by certain 
commercial vehicles, and for other purposes.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of H.R. 536 is to permit the National Park 
Service to reinstitute the program of collecting fees for 
commercial vehicular traffic within Delaware Water Gap National 
Recreation Area for a period of 10 years.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area in 
Pennsylvania and New Jersey preserves lands on both sides of 
the Delaware River. Route 209 runs 21 miles through the middle 
of the National Recreation Area. For many years, Route 209 
served as a major truck route, because of its easier grades and 
shorter route from New England to Pennsylvania. In 1981, route 
209 was transferred to the National Park Service (NPS). A 
provision of Public Law 98-63, the Fiscal Year 1983 
Supplemental Appropriations Act, closed the park segment of 
Route 209 to commercial traffic, authorized the NPS to collect 
and keep fees and provided a sunset clause for the provision. 
The law provided that the legislative authority would expire on 
July 30, 1993, or upon completion of I-287 (an alternative 
route which was expected to be finished by 1993), whichever 
came first.
    To implement the law, the NPS set up checkpoints and toll 
booths to collect fees from commercial traffic. Since 1983, the 
number of commercial trucks using Route 209 dropped 
significantly. The fees collected from the commercial trucks 
that are allowed on Route 209 cover the NPS's costs of 
collection, but do not fully cover road maintenance.
    The NPS has regulatory authority to ban commercial traffic 
in parks unless such traffic is local in nature, but not to 
retain the fees in the parks. Delaware Water Gap National 
Recreation Area is unique in this toll arrangement.

                            Committee Action

    H.R. 536 was introduced by Mr. McDade of Pennsylvania on 
January 17, 1995, and referred to the Committee on Resources. 
Within the Committee, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee 
on National Parks, Forests and Lands. A hearing on H.R. 536 was 
held by the Subcommittee on January 24, 1995. At the meeting of 
the Subcommittee on January 26, 1995, an amendment in the 
nature of a substitute, offered by Mr. Hansen, was adopted by 
voice vote. This amendment limited commercial vehicle use of 
Route 209 to 10 years and provided for local commercial 
vehicular use after that date. H.R. 536, as amended, was 
ordered favorably reported to the Committee on Resources. At 
the meeting of the Committee on Resources on February 15, 1995, 
the Committee ordered the bill, as amended, favorably reported 
to the House of Representatives by voice vote, a quorum being 
present.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

    The bill provides that as of September 30, 2005, commercial 
vehicular use of Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is 
prohibited, except for commercial vehicles serving businesses 
within or in the vicinity of the recreation area. The Secretary 
of the Interior is authorized to develop policies necessary to 
implement this provision. This section also authorizes the 
Secretary to charge up to $25 for each commercial vehicle using 
route 209 and to utilize those funds without further 
appropriation.

            Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations

    Pursuant to clause 2(l)(3) of rule XI of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives and clause 2(b)(1) of rule X of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives, the Committee's 
oversight findings and recommendations are reflected in the 
body of this report.

                     Inflationary Impact Statement

    Pursuant to clause 2(l)(4) of rule XI of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee estimates that the 
enactment of H.R. 536 will have no significant inflationary 
impact on prices and costs in the operation of the national 
economy.

                        Cost of the Legislation

    Clause 7(a) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires an estimate and a comparison by the 
Committee of the costs which would be incurred in carrying out 
H.R. 536. However, clause 7(d) of that rule provides that this 
requirement does not apply when the Committee has included in 
its report a timely submitted cost estimate of the bill 
prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office 
under section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

                     Compliance With House Rule XI

    1. With respect to the requirements of clause 2(l)(3)(A) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Lands held hearings 
on January 24, 1995, and received testimony on H.R. 536 and the 
oversight findings and recommendations of the Committee are 
reflected in this report.
    2. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(D) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee has received no report of oversight findings and 
recommendations from the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight on the subject of H.R. 536.
    3. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(C) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the 
Committee has received the following cost estimate for H.R. 536 
from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office.

               Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                 Washington, DC, February 23, 1995.
Hon. Don Young,
Chairman, Committee on Resources,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 536, a bill to 
prohibit the use of highway 209 within the Delaware Water Gap 
National Recreation Area by certain commercial vehicles, and 
for other purposes.
    Enactment of H.R. 536 would affect direct spending. 
Therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures would apply to the bill.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them.
            Sincerely,
                                              James L. Blum
                              (For Robert D. Reischauer, Director).
    Enclosure.

               congressional budget office cost estimate

    1. Bill number: H.R. 536.
    2. Bill title: A bill to prohibit the use of highway 209 
within the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area by 
certain commercial vehicles, and for other purposes.
    3. Bill status: As ordered reported by the House Committee 
on Resources on February 15, 1995.
    4. Bill purpose: H.R. 536 would prohibit all commercial 
vehicles from using highway 209 within the Delaware Water Gap 
National Recreation Area, with limited exceptions, after 
September 30, 2005. Until that time, the bill would authorize 
the National Park Service (NPS) to collect commercial use fees 
of up to $25 per trip. The NPS previously had the authority to 
collect fees, but it expired in fiscal year 1993.
    5. Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The NPS is 
currently using appropriated funds to operate check stations on 
highway 209 to monitor commercial traffic. CBO estimates that 
enacting H.R. 536 would result in a small decrease in spending 
subject to appropriations, because the currently appropriated 
spending would be replaced by direct spending. The net impact 
on direct spending, however, would be close to zero because the 
new fees authorized by the bill would offset the cost of 
collecting the fees. Under H.R. 536, the fees collected would 
be available, without further appropriation, to pay the cost of 
operating the stations.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      1996       1997       1998       1999       2000  
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Authorizations:                                                         
    Estimated                                                           
     Authorizatio                                                       
     n Level.....       -0.3       -0.3       -0.3       -0.3       -0.3
    Estimated                                                           
     Outlays.....       -0.3       -0.3       -0.3       -0.3       -0.3
                                                                        
Direct Spending:                                                        
    Estimated                                                           
     Budget                                                             
     Authority...      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)
    Estimated                                                           
     Outlays.....      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Less than $50,000.                                                  

    The costs of this bill fall within budget function 300.
    The NPS is currently spending about $275,000 of annually 
appropriated funds to operate the highway 209 check stations 
for limited hours. Based on information provided by the NPS, 
CBO estimates that total fee receipts under H.R. 536 would 
approximately equal the cost of operating the stations for 24 
hours per day--about $300,000 per year. The NPS plans to set an 
initial fee level of $10 per trip, and to increase the fee as 
necessary to continue to offset the operating costs. Such 
future increases in the fee level are likely because the amount 
of commercial traffic on the road is expected to decline over 
time.
    After September 30, 2005, all commercial traffic would be 
prohibited. The NPS plans to close the check stations at that 
time, so the spending and the offsetting receipts would both 
end. The ban on commercial traffic would be enforced with 
existing traffic patrols. Should the NPS be unable to collect 
sufficient fees in the interim to pay the costs of collection, 
they would probably move more quickly to close the stations.
    6. Comparison with spending under current law: The current 
spending for operating check stations on highway 209 is 
approximately $275,000. Enacting H.R. 536 would eliminate the 
need for appropriated funds for this purpose and substitute 
spending from amounts collected in fees. Hence, the bill would 
likely lead to a small net decrease in federal outlays 
associated with highway 209.
    7. Pay-as-you-go considerations: Section 252 of the 
Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 sets 
up pay-as-you-go procedures for legislation affecting direct 
spending or receipts through 1998. CBO estimates that enactment 
of H.R. 536 would have a very small impact on direct spending. 
Therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures would apply to the bill. 
(The bill would not affect governmental receipts.)

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                            1996       1997       1998  
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Change in outlays......................          0          0          0
Change in receipts.....................      (\1\)      (\1\)      (\1\)
------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Not applicable.                                                     

    8. Estimated cost to State and local governments: None.
    9. Estimate comparison: None.
    10. Previous CBO estimate: None.
    11. Estimate prepared by: Deborah Reis.
    12. Estimate approved by: Paul N. Van de Water, Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                          Departmental Reports

    The Committee has received no departmental reports on H.R. 
536.

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3 of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by the 
bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law proposed 
to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets and existing law in 
which no change is proposed is shown in roman):

                          ACT OF JULY 30, 1983

 AN ACT Making supplemental appropriations for the fiscal year ending 
               September 30, 1983, and for other purposes

          * * * * * * *

                                TITLE I

          * * * * * * *

                              CHAPTER VII

                       DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

          * * * * * * *

                       ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS

          * * * * * * *
  In order to further the purposes of the Delaware Water Gap 
National Recreational Area, and to provide for the public 
safety of the visitors to the recreation area and the citizens 
of the States of New Jersey and Pennsylvania:
  [(1) Highway 209, as a federally owned road within the 
boundaries of the recreation area, is hereby closed to all 
commercial vehicular traffic upon enactment of this law, except 
for those commercial vehicular operations which are based 
within the recreation area, or which have business facilities 
in Monroe and Pike Counties, Pennsylvania, operating, on the 
date of enactment, commercial vehicular traffic originating or 
terminating outside the recreation area, and except for those 
commercial vehicular operations which are necessary to provide 
services to businesses and persons located within or contiguous 
to the boundaries of the recreation area.
  [(2) The Secretary of the Interior is authorized and 
directed, notwithstanding any other law, to establish a 
commercial operation fee for the use, in accordance with 
subsection (1), of highway 209 for all commercial vehicles, 
except for commercial vehicular operations serving businesses 
or persons located in or contiguous to the boundaries of the 
recreation area: Provided, That the fee schedule may not exceed 
$7 per trip: Provided further, That all fees received shall be 
set aside in a special account and are available, without 
further appropriation, for the management, operation, 
construction, and maintenance of highway 209 within the 
boundaries of the recreation area.
  [(3) The provisions of subsection (1) of this section shall 
terminate on December 31, 1983. The provisions of subsection 
(2) of this section shall terminate three years from the 
enactment of this section unless construction of the I-287 
bypass and the construction of high occupancy vehicle lanes or 
auxiliary lanes on I-287 from, the I-287 intersection with 
State Route 22 in Somerset County to the I-287 intersection 
with I-80 in Morris County in New Jersey or any other feasible, 
suitable alternative has been commenced. In the event 
construction has been commenced subsection (2) of this section 
will terminate ten years from the enactment of this section, or 
when construction of I-287 bypass and the construction of high 
occupancy vehicle lanes or auxiliary lanes on I-287 from the I-
287 intersection with State Route 22 in Somerset County to the 
I-287 intersection with I-80 in Morris County in New Jersey or 
any other feasible, suitable alternative is completed, 
whichever occurs first.]
          * * * * * * *