Today, the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee approved legislation related to toxic chemicals reform, wildlife, General Service Administration (GSA) resolutions, and other measures.
Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, said: "I am pleased that we have made substantial progress today on issues that are so important to the health and safety of the American public and in protecting and preserving our wildlife."
The measures approved today, which are listed below, will go to the full Senate for consideration.
S. 847, Safe Chemicals Act of 2011
Introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), the Committee passed S.847, which reforms and modernizes the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to better protect families and children from toxic chemicals in everyday products. The measure, cosponsored by Senator Boxer, passed the Committee by a vote of 10 to 8.
Senator Boxer said: "I am pleased that the Committee passed this important bill to reform and improve our nation's law to protect people, including pregnant women, infants, and children, from dangerous chemicals. TSCA needs to be modernized to help ensure that chemicals used in everyday products are safe when manufactured or sold in the United States."
S. 810, Great Ape Protection and Cost Savings Act of 2011
Introduced by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Susan Collins (R-ME), S.810 as amended would, with certain exceptions, prohibit invasive research on great apes (e.g., chimpanzee, bonobo, gorilla, orangutan, gibbon), prohibit the use of federal funds for great ape research in and outside the United States, and permanently retire all great apes owned by the federal government. The bill, as approved by the Committee, includes a Boxer-Cardin amendment that will allow the approval of research on great apes if it is necessary to address a new, emerging, or reemerging disease and is consistent with the recommendations of the National Academy of Science's Institute of Medicine.
Senator Boxer said: "We have a responsibility to switch to alternative methods when there is strong evidence that the same results can be achieved without testing on great apes."
S. 357, Wildlife Disease Emergency Act of 2011
Introduced by Senator Frank Lautenberg, S.357 authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to declare a wildlife disease emergency. It directs the Secretary, upon making such a declaration, to lead a coordinated response to the emergency and provides grants to state and tribal wildlife agencies to help with the response.
S. 1494, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Reauthorization Act of 2011
Introduced by Senator Boxer, S.1494 reauthorizes the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), which was established by Congress in 1984 to preserve fish, wildlife, and other habitats through grants and private investments.
S. 2071, Permanent Electronic Duck Stamp Act of 2012
Introduced by Senators Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Mark Pryor (D-AR), S.2071 makes permanent and extends to all states a pilot program issuing electronic Federal migratory bird hunting and conservation stamps. The sale of these "Duck Stamps" supports wetland and waterfowl protection within the National Wildlife Refuge System.
S. 2156, Migratory Bird Habitat Investment and Enhancement Act
Introduced by Senator Mark Begich (D-AK), S.2156 allows the Secretary of the Interior in consultation with the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission to revise the cost of the Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp ("Duck Stamp"). The price may be increased to twenty-five dollars for the first five-year period beginning in 2013 and to thirty dollars in the subsequent five-year period.
S. 2282, North American Wetlands Conservation Extension Act of 2012
Introduced by Senators James Inhofe (D-OK) and Boxer, S.2282 reauthorizes the North American Wetlands Conservation Act of 1989 (NACWA) until 2017. NACWA provides matching grants to organizations that develop partnerships to carry out wetland conservation projects benefitting migratory birds and other wildlife.
S. 3370, Albuquerque, New Mexico, Federal Land Conveyance Act of 2012
Introduced by Senator Tom Udall (D-NM), S.3370 authorizes the Administrator of General Services to convey a parcel of real property in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to the Amy Biehl High School Foundation.
S. 1735, a bill to approve the transfer of Yellow Creek Port properties in Iuka, Mississippi.
S. 1735, introduced by Senators Thad Cochran and Roger Wicker, approves the transfer of the Yellow Creek Port properties located in Iuka, Mississippi from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to the state of Mississippi. The Yellow Creek Port, which is located on the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, was developed by TVA, the State of Mississippi, and other federal and local partners for economic development purposes.
S. 2251, introduced by Senators Mark Begich and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), to designate the United States courthouse located at 709 West 9th Street, Juneau, Alaska, as the "Robert Boochever United States Courthouse".
S. 2326, introduced by Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), to designate the new United States courthouse in Buffalo, New York, as the "Robert H. Jackson United States Courthouse".