| Home > 106th Congressional Bills > S. 422 (rs) To provide for Alaska state jurisdiction over small hydroelectric projects. [Reported in Senate] ...
S. 422 (rs) To provide for Alaska state jurisdiction over small hydroelectric projects. [Reported in Senate] ...
106th CONGRESS 1st Session S. 422 _______________________________________________________________________ IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES April 12, 1999 Referred to the Committee on Commerce _______________________________________________________________________ AN ACT To provide for Alaska state jurisdiction over small hydroelectric projects. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. ALASKA STATE JURISDICTION OVER SMALL HYDROELECTRIC PROJECTS. Part I of the Federal Power Act (16 U.S.C. 792 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following: ``SEC. 32. ALASKA STATE JURISDICTION OVER SMALL HYDROELECTRIC PROJECTS. ``(a) Discontinuance of Regulation by the Commission.-- Notwithstanding sections 4(e) and 23(b), the Commission shall discontinue exercising licensing and regulatory authority under this Part over qualifying project works in the State of Alaska, effective on the date on which the Commission certifies that the State of Alaska has in place a regulatory program for water-power development that-- ``(1) protects the public interest, the purposes listed in paragraph (2), and the environment to the same extent provided by licensing and regulation by the Commission under this Part and other applicable Federal laws, including the Endangered Species Act (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.) and the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 U.S.C. 661 et seq.); ``(2) gives equal consideration to the purposes of-- ``(A) energy conservation; ``(B) the protection, mitigation of damage to, and enhancement of, fish and wildlife (including related spawning grounds and habitat); ``(C) the protection of recreational opportunities, ``(D) the preservation of other aspects of environmental quality, ``(E) the interests of Alaska Natives, and ``(F) other beneficial public uses, including irrigation, flood control, water supply, and navigation; and ``(3) requires, as a condition of a license for any project works-- ``(A) the construction, maintenance, and operation by a licensee at its own expense of such lights and signals as may be directed by the Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating, and such fishways as may be prescribed by the Secretary of the Interior or the Secretary of Commerce, as appropriate; ``(B) the operation of any navigation facilities which may be constructed as part of any project to be controlled at all times by such reasonable rules and regulations as may be made by the Secretary of the Army; and ``(C) conditions for the protection, mitigation, and enhancement of fish and wildlife based on recommendations received pursuant to the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (16 U.S.C. 661 et seq.) from the National Marine Fisheries Service, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, and State fish and wildlife agencies. ``(b) Definition of `Qualifying Project Works'.--For purposes of this section, the term `qualifying project works' means project works-- ``(1) that are not part of a project licensed under this Part or exempted from licensing under this Part or section 405 of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 prior to the date of enactment of this section; ``(2) for which a preliminary permit, a license application, or an application for an exemption from licensing has not been accepted for filing by the Commission prior to the date of enactment of subsection (c) (unless such application is withdrawn at the election of the applicant); ``(3) that are part of a project that has a power production capacity of 5,000 kilowatts or less; ``(4) that are located entirely within the boundaries of the State of Alaska; and ``(5) that are not located in whole or in part on any Indian reservation, a conservation system unit (as defined in section 102(4) of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 3102(4))), or segment of a river designated for study for addition to the Wild and Scenic Rivers System. ``(c) Election of State Licensing.--In the case of nonqualifying project works that would be a qualifying project works but for the fact that the project has been licensed (or exempted from licensing) by the Commission prior to the enactment of this section, the licensee of such project may in its discretion elect to make the project subject to licensing and regulation by the State of Alaska under this section. ``(d) Project Works on Federal Lands.--With respect to projects located in whole or in part on a reservation, a conservation system unit, or the public lands, a State license or exemption from licensing shall be subject to-- ``(1) the approval of the Secretary having jurisdiction over such lands; and ``(2) such conditions as the Secretary may prescribe. ``(e) Consultation With Affected Agencies.--The Commission shall consult with the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Agriculture, and the Secretary of Commerce before certifying the State of Alaska's regulatory program. ``(f) Application of Federal Laws.--Nothing in this section shall preempt the application of Federal environmental, natural resources, or cultural resources protection laws according to their terms. ``(g) Oversight by the Commission.--The State of Alaska shall notify the Commission not later than 30 days after making any significant modification to its regulatory program. The Commission shall periodically review the State's program to ensure compliance with the provisions of this section. ``(h) Resumption of Commission Authority.--Notwithstanding subsection (a), the Commission shall reassert its licensing and regulatory authority under this Part if the Commission finds that the State of Alaska has not complied with one or more of the requirements of this section. ``(i) Determination by the Commission.-- ``(1) Upon application by the Governor of the State of Alaska, the Commission shall within 30 days commence a review of the State of Alaska's regulatory program for water-power development to determine whether it complies with the requirements of subsection (a). ``(2) The Commission's review required by paragraph (1) shall be completed within one year of initiation, and the Commission shall within 30 days thereafter issue a final order determining whether or not the State of Alaska's regulatory program for water-power development complies with the requirements of subsection (a). ``(3) If the Commission fails to issue a final order in accordance with paragraph (2), the State of Alaska's regulatory program for water-power development shall be deemed to be in compliance with subsection (a).''. Passed the Senate March 25, 1999. Attest: GARY SISCO, Secretary.
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