Legislation

Legislation provides well-defined authorities and policies to legitimize and facilitate consistent and effective water resources management.

To access information about activities of the U.S. Congress, including current bills and activities, the Congressional record, committee information, and other government resources, free access is provided from the Library of Congress through THOMAS at http://thomas.loc.gov/home/thomas.php. This information is being transitioned to the CONGRESS.GOV at http://beta.congress.gov/ (still in beta mode) for improved searching capabilities and designs.

A list of legislative resources of federal agencies, states, interstate entities, Tribal Governments, non-governmental organizations, and other water agencies across the United States is provided. To locate specific legislation in the Federal Support Toolbox or to filter the list by keyword, enter a search term in the Search Legislation box.


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Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (P.L. 96-487)

Description Through consolidation and expansion of existing refuges and creation of new units, the law designated 79.54 million acres of public refuge lands (24.47 million acres of wilderness) in Alaska as units of the National Park, National Wildlife Refuge, Wild and Scenic Rivers, National Wilderness Preservation and National Forest Systems for comprehensive management of public lands.

America COMPETES Act

Description Promotes excellence in science and technology. Requires the Director of the Office of Science and Technology to establish a committee under the National Science and Technology Council and the Office of Management and Budget to coordinate federal programs and activities in support of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) education at federal agencies, including the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Energy (DOE), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Department of Education and other agencies with programs and activities in support of STEM education.

Antiquities Act (1906)

Description Provides that for any conviction imprisonment of up to 90 days and/or a fine up to $500 of anyone who appropriates, excavates, injures, or destroys any historic or prehistoric ruin, monument, object of antiquity situated on lands owned or controlled by the U.S. Government without the permission of the Secretary of the Department of that agency which has jurisdiction over the lands on which said antiquities are situated.

Central Valley Project Improvement Act (1992)

Description Aims to: (1) protects, restores or enhances fish, wildlife and associated habitats in the Central Valley and Trinity River basins of California to (2) address impacts of the Central Valley Project on fish, wildlife and associated habitats; (3) improve operational flexibility, (4) increase water-related benefits of the Project through voluntary water transfers and improved water conservation, (5) contribute to interim and long-term efforts to protect the San Francisco Bay/Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Estuary and (6) achieve a reasonable balance among competing water demands/uses for fish and wildlife, agricultural, municipal, industrial and power contractors) of Central Valley Project Water

Clean Water Act (1972)

Description Regulates discharges of pollutants into the waters of the United States, including quality water standards for all contaminants in surface waters. For example, it sets wastewater standards for industry, i.e., it makes it unlawful to discharge any pollutant from a point source (e.g., conveyances such as pipes or man-made ditches) into navigable waters unless a permit was obtained through the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).

Coastal Barrier Resources Act (1982)

Description Removes previous Federal incentives that subsidized and encouraged development on coastal barriers, resulting in the loss of natural resources and threats to human life, health and property and the expenditure of millions of tax dollars each year by designating relatively undeveloped coastal barriers along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts as part of the John H. Chafee Coastal Barrier Resources System (CBRS), which was made ineligible for most new direct or indirect Federal expenditures and financial assistance that might support development.

Coastal Zone Management Act

Description Sets national policy to preserve, protect, develop and restore or enhance the natural resources of the Nation's coastal zone for perpetuity. Encourages and assists the states to develop and implement management programs to achieve wise use of the land and water resources of the coastal zone (including wetlands, floodplains, estuaries, beaches, dunes, barrier islands, coral reefs, fish and wildlife and their habitat), considering ecological, cultural, historical, esthetic and economic development values, benefits and protections.

Colorado River Basin Salinity Control Act (1974)

Description Provides for the construction of facilities to control the salinity and water quality of the Colorado River and authorizes activities for mitigation of fish and wildlife loss.

Coral Reef Conservation Act (2000, amended in 2009, 2011)

Description Amends the Coral Reef Conservation Act of 2000 to award coral reef conservation program grant funds to projects that minimize injury to a coral reef or loss of an ecosystem function from vessel impacts and gear and unforeseen natural or human-caused disasters. Authorizes monitoring, assessment, research, pollution reduction, education and technical support to stabilize, repair or restore the reef.

Endangered Species Act (1973)

Description Asks the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA's) National Marine Fisheries Service and the Department of the Interior's (DOI's) U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect animal and plant species from extinction by preserving their habitats and ecosystems and by promoting conservation. Species include birds, insects, fish, reptiles, mammals, crustaceans, flowers, grasses and trees. Requires the best scientific and commercially available data to be used to list threatened animal and plant species. Prohibits the "taking" of any listed species of endangered fish or wildlife or the import, export, or interstate or foreign commerce of listed species.
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