[House Report 109-532]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]



109th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                     109-532

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AUTHORITY OF GSA TO MAKE REPAIRS AND LEASE SPACE IN RESPONSE TO DAMAGES 
          ATTRIBUTABLE TO HURRICANE KATRINA OR HURRICANE RITA

                                _______
                                

 June 27, 2006.--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 Transportation and 
                Infrastructure, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 4125]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom 
was referred the bill (H.R. 4125) to permit the Administrator 
of General Services to make repairs and lease space without 
approval of a prospectus if the repair or lease is required as 
a result of damages to buildings or property attributable to 
Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Rita, having considered the 
same, report favorably thereon without amendment and recommend 
that the bill do pass.

                       PURPOSE OF THE LEGISLATION

    The purpose of H.R. 4125 is to allow the General Services 
Administration (GSA) to conduct certain activities without 
approval of a prospectus if such activities are required as a 
result of damages to buildings or property attributable to 
Hurricanes Katrina or Rita.

                BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR THE LEGISLATION

    Wind, rain, and flooding caused by Hurricane Katrina and 
Hurricane Rita damaged dozens of federal facilities across the 
Gulf region. Damage in some of these facilities is minor, 
requiring simple clean-up, while other facilities in low lying 
areas were completely destroyed or require major renovation. 
Title 40 United States Code restricts GSA to short term 
emergency leases up to six months and contains no authority for 
emergency alteration projects that exceed the current 
prospectus threshold of $2.41 million.

                       SUMMARY OF THE LEGISLATION

    Section 1. This section waives the prospectus submission 
requirement in 3307(a) of the Public Buildings Act (40 U.S.C. 
3307(a)) for the repair of a public building, repair of any 
building or part of a building under lease by the federal 
government, and the leasing of space for use for a public 
purpose, if the lease or repair is required as a result of 
damage caused by Hurricanes Katrina or Rita. Leases carried out 
under this authority may not exceed a five-year term.
    For repairs, reports must be submitted five days prior to 
entering into repair agreements and contain the description of 
the building, description of the repair, estimate of the repair 
and estimate of the date of completion. Final reports on 
repairs must be submitted within 15 days of the completion of 
the repair and include a detailed description of the completed 
work and total cost. Reports for leases must be submitted not 
later than 10 days after entering into the lease agreement, and 
include information on the location of the leased space, square 
footage, cost of lease, and use of the space.
    All reports must be submitted by GSA to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of 
Representatives and the Committee on Environment and Public 
Works of the Senate.
    Section 2. This section terminates the authority provided 
to the Administrator of GSA one year after the date of 
enactment of H.R. 4125.

            LEGISLATIVE HISTORY AND COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    H.R. 4125 was introduced by Representative Bill Shuster, 
Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, and Representative Charles 
Boustany on October 25, 2005, and was referred to the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure.
    On October 26, 2005, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure met in open session and considered H.R. 4125. A 
motion by Mr. Shuster to order H.R. 4125 favorably reported to 
the House was agreed to unanimously, by voice vote with a 
quorum present. There were no recorded votes taken during 
consideration of H.R. 4125.

                             ROLLCALL VOTES

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the House of Representatives 
requires each committee report to include the total number of 
votes cast for and against on each rollcall vote on a motion to 
report and on any amendment offered to the measure or matter, 
and the names of those members voting for and against. There 
were no recorded votes taken in conjunction with ordering H.R. 
4125 favorably reported to the House.

                      COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

    With respect to the requirements of clause 3(c)(1) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are 
reflected in this report.

                          COST OF LEGISLATION

    Clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives does not apply where a cost estimate and 
comparison prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office under section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974 has been timely submitted prior to the filing of the 
report and is included in the report. Such a cost estimate is 
included in this report.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII

    1. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(2) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, and 
308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee 
references the report of the Congressional Budget Office 
included below.
    2. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(4) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
performance goals and objective of this legislation are 
included in the legislation.
    3. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(3) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the 
Committee has received the following cost estimate for H.R. 
4125, as amended, from the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office.

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                 Washington, DC, November 14, 2005.
Hon. Don Young,
Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 4125, a bill to 
permit the Administrator of General Services to make repairs 
and lease space without approval of a prospectus if the repair 
or lease is required as a result of damages to buildings or 
property attributable to Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Rita.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Matthew 
Pickford.
            Sincerely,
                                          Donald B. Marron,
                               (For Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Director).
    Enclosure.

H.R. 4125--A bill to permit the Administrator of General Services to 
        make repairs and lease space without approval of a prospectus 
        if the repair or lease is required as a result of damages to 
        buildings or property attributable to Hurricane Katrina or 
        Hurricane Rita

    CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 4125 would have no 
significant impact on the federal budget. Enacting the bill 
would not affect direct spending or revenues. H.R. 4125 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would not 
affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal governments.
    Under current law, the General Services Administration 
(GSA) is responsible for repairing federal buildings it manages 
and leasing privately owned properties for use by federal 
agencies. Spending for such activities is subject to 
appropriation. Except in emergency situations, repairs or 
leases that are estimated to cost more than $2.41 million 
require prior approval by the Congressional committees with 
jurisdiction over GSA.
    H.R. 4125 would authorize GSA to proceed, without prior 
approval by those committees, with any repairs or lease 
negotiations necessitated by Hurricanes Katrina or Rita. Under 
H.R. 4125, GSA might complete activities with estimated costs 
greater than $2.41 million sooner than under current law. Based 
on information from GSA, however, CBO estimates that the 
proposed procedural change would not significantly affect the 
rate at which GSA will spend existing resources. CBO also 
estimates that the bill would not have a significant impact on 
new funding for repairs or leases related to the hurricanes. 
(Any such funding would be subject to appropriation.)
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Matthew 
Pickford. This estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine, 
Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                   CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT

    Pursuant to clause (3)(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, committee reports on a bill or 
joint resolution of a public character shall include a 
statement citing the specific powers granted to the Congress in 
the Constitution to enact the measure. The Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure finds that Congress has the 
authority to enact this measure pursuant to its powers granted 
under article I, section 8 of the Constitution.

                       FEDERAL MANDATES STATEMENT

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of federal 
mandates prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office pursuant to section 423 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform 
Act. (Public Law 104-4).

                        PREEMPTION CLARIFICATION

    Section 423 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 
requires the report of any Committee on a bill or joint 
resolution to include a statement on the extent to which the 
bill or joint resolution is intended to preempt state, local or 
tribal law. The Committee states that H.R. 4125 does not 
preempt any state, local, or tribal law.

                      ADVISORY COMMITTEE STATEMENT

    No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b) 
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act are created by this 
legislation.

                APPLICABILITY TO THE LEGISLATIVE BRANCH

    The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to 
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public 
services or accommodations within the meaning of section 
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act. (Public Law 
104-1).

         CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW MADE BY THE BILL, AS REPORTED

    H.R. 4125 makes no changes to existing law.