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Calendar No. 312
109th Congress Report
1st Session 109-194
DELAWARE WATER GAP NATIONAL RECREATION AREA NATURAL GAS PIPELINE
December 8, 2005.--Ordered to be printed
Filed under authority of the order of the Senate of November 18, 2005
Mr. Domenici, from the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources,
submitted the following
R E P O R T
[To accompany S. 1310]
The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, to which was
referred the bill (S. 1310) to authorize the Secretary of the
Interior to allow the Columbia Gas Transmission Corporation to
increase the diameter of a natural gas pipeline located in the
Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, having considered
the same, reports favorably thereon with amendments and an
amendment to the title and recommends that the bill, as
amended, do pass.
The amendments are as follows:
1. On page 2, line 9, strike ``16414'' and insert
2. On page 2, line 23, strike ``, for no consideration,''.
3. On page 6, after line 7, add the following:
``SEC. 4. TERMINATION OF NATIONAL PARK SYSTEM ADVISORY BOARD.
``Section 3(f) of the Act of August 21, 1935 (16 U.S.C. 463(f)) is
amended in the first sentence by striking `2006' and inserting
4. Amend the title so as to read: ``To authorize the
Secretary of the Interior to allow the Columbia Gas
Transmission Corporation to increase the diameter of a natural
gas pipeline located in the Delaware Water Gap National
Recreation Area and to extend the termination date of the
National Park System Advisory Board to January 1, 2008.''.
Purpose of the Measure
The purpose of S. 1310 is to allow the Columbia Gas
Transmission Corporation to increase the diameter of a natural
gas pipeline located in the Delaware Water Gap National
Background and Need
The Columbia Gas Transmission Corporation owns and operates
the utility right of way to a major gas pipeline traversing
Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area in Pennsylvania.
The pipeline is a critical link in the natural gas transmission
network between production facilities in Appalachia and the
South to consumers in the Northeast. The pipeline right-of-way
crosses the park for 3.5 miles. When the park was created
authority was granted to permit expansion of the pipeline to
meet demands of consumers for all but two parcels of land
(approximately 800 feet) which contained the pipeline right-of-
way. S. 1310 will grant the National Park Service the authority
to change the rights-of-way for the two land parcels to be
consistent with the remainder of the right-of-way, thus
allowing Columbia Gas to expand the size of the pipeline to
meet current demands.
S. 1310 was introduced by Senators Santorum and Specter on
June 24, 2005. The Subcommittee on National Parks held a
hearing on S. 1310 on September 22, 2005. Similar legislation,
S. 2909, was introduced by Senators Santorum and Specter in the
At its business meeting on September 28, 2005, the
Committee on Energy and NaturalResources ordered S. 1310
favorably reported, as amended.
During the consideration of S. 1310, three amendments were
adopted and an amendment to the title. The committee adopted a
technical amendment to correct a right-of-way number. In
addition, the Committee adopted an amendment that would strike
the requirement that the easement be expanded for no
consideration. The third amendment would extend the authority
for the National Park System Advisory Board (Board) through
2008. The Board was first authorized in 1935 under the Historic
Sites, Buildings, and Antiquities Act. The Board advises the
Director of the National Park Service (Director) and the
Secretary of the Interior on matters relating to the National
Park Service, the National Park System, and programs
administered by the National Park Service. The National Park
System Advisory Board is currently authorized until January 1,
2006. The amendment would extend the authorization through
January 1, 2008.
The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, in open
business session on November 16, 2005, by a unanimous voice of
a quorum present, recommends that the Senate pass S. 1310 if
amended as described herein.
Section 1 entitles the bill the ``Delaware Water Gap
National Recreation Area Natural Gas Pipeline Enlargement
Section 2 defines key terms.
Section 3(a) authorizes the Secretary to provide the
Columbia Gas Transmission Corporation an easement to enlarge
the diameter of the existing gas pipeline from 14 inches to not
more than 20 inches.
Subsection (b) defines the terms and conditions of the
easement, including a requirement that the easement be
consistent with the recreational values and the protection of
resources in the National Recreation Area.
Subsection (c) authorizes the Superintendent of the
National Recreation Area to issue a permit to the corporation
for the expansion of the pipeline and sets forth the conditions
and requirements for the permit.
Subsection (d) defines pipeline replacement requirements.
Subsection (e) requires the Corporation to comply with all
Subsection (f) prohibits the Secretary from granting
additional increases in the pipeline diameter.
Subsection (g) establishes the right-of-way 50 feet.
Subsection (h) authorizes the Attorney General, at the
request of the Secretary to bring civil actions for violations
of the easement or permit or for damage to park resources.
Section 4 extends the termination date of the National Park
System Advisory Board from 2006 to 2008.
Cost and Budgetary Considerations
The following estimate of costs of this measure has been
provided by the Congressional Budget Office.
S. 1310--Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area Natural Gas
Pipeline Enlargement Act
S. 1310 would authorize the National Park Service (NPS) to
issue an easement and a construction permit to the Columbia Gas
Transmission Corporation. These documents would enable the
corporation to increase the diameter of a natural gas pipeline
that crosses the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area in
Pennsylvania. S. 1310 also would extend the life of the life of
the National Park System advisory board for an additional two
years (through January 1, 2008).
Based on information provided by the NPS, CBO estimates
that implementing S. 1310 would have no significant effect on
the federal budget. We expect that the cost of providing an
easement and a construction permit to the Columbia Gas
Transmission Corporation would be less than $100,000 and would
be offset by new administrative fees. Assuming the availability
of appropriated funds, we estimate that supporting the National
Park System advisory board would cost about $200,000 a year for
each of the next two years. Enacting S. 1310 would not affect
revenues or direct spending.
On November 22, 2005, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for
H.R. 3124, the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
Natural Gas Pipeline Enlargement Act, as ordered reported by
the House Committee on Resources on November 16,2005. The two
versions of the bill are very similar, as are their estimated
This legislation contains no intergovernmental or private-
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal
The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Deborah Reis.
This estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.
Regulatory Impact Evaluation
In compliance with paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee makes the following
evaluation of the regulatory impact which would be incurred in
carrying out S. 1310. The bill is not a regulatory measure in
the sense of imposing Government-established standards or
significant economic responsibilities on private individuals
No personal information would be collected in administering
the program. Therefore, there would be no impact on personal
Little, if any, additional paperwork would result from the
enactment of S. 1310, as ordered reported.
The views of the Administration on S. 1310 were included in
testimony received by the Committee at a hearing on the bill on
September 22, 2005 as follows:
Statement of Janet Snyder Matthews, Associate Director for Cultural
Resources, National Park Service, Department of the Interior
Mr. Chairman, thank you for the opportunity to present the
Department of the Interior's views on S. 1310, a bill to
authorize the Secretary of the Interior to allow the Columbia
Gas Transmission Corporation to increase the diameter of a
natural gas pipeline located in the Delaware Water Gap National
Recreation Area. The Department supports enactment of this
legislation with one technical amendment.
This bill provides for the Secretary of the Interior to
enter into an agreement with the Columbia Gas Transmission
Corporation, for no consideration, to grant an easement to
permit the enlargement of an existing natural gas pipeline from
a diameter of 14 inches to no more than 20 inches. It provides
for the Corporation to submit resource information and
appropriate restoration and mitigation plans under terms and
conditions that assure the protection of the natural and
cultural resources of the national recreation area. In
addition, the Corporation will have to comply with other
requirements for certification set forth by the Federal Energy
and Regulatory Commission to permit an increase in the diameter
of the pipeline. Finally, the bill states that the Secretary
shall not grant any additional increases in the pipeline's
diameter and limits the pipeline's right-of-way to its existing
Pipeline 1278 is a part of the Columbia Gas Transmission
Corporation's interstate pipeline network that delivers natural
gas to the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states from production
areas in the southwest and Appalachia, 3.5 miles of which runs
through sections of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation
Area. Pipeline 1278 was constructed in the mid-1940's on
easements purchased from landowners. When land was acquired for
the national recreation area, five parcels of land were
acquired subject to easements for pipeline 1278.
Pipeline 1278 underwent periodic testing in 2002. The
inspection showed that the pipeline was showing its age, and
there were numerous instances that the wall of the pipeline was
thinning. The Corporation was issued a Corrective Action Order
by the Department of Transportation. The order required the
Corporation to reduce the operating pressure in the pipeline
until such time as all anomalies in the pipeline could be
repaired. A determination was made by the Corporation that the
best way to repair the current pipeline was to replace the
existing pipeline with a new, state of the art, cathodically
protected steel pipe. At the same time, the Corporation decided
to upgrade the diameter of the pipeline from 14 inches to 20
The National Park Service does not have legal authority to
issue rights-of-way for petroleum pipelines across parklands.
The deeds for the five parcels of land, subject to easements
for the Corporation pipeline, are very specific about the
rights that the Corporation purchased back in the 1940's.
Congressional action is needed to allow the increase in
pipeline size on two of the parcels totaling 800 feet of
parkland. Congressional action is not required for the
remaining three parcels, since the deeds permit the increase in
This legislation simply permits the Columbia Gas
Transmission Corporation to fully utilize an easement they
purchased 50 years ago. By order of the Department of
Transportation, the pipeline must be repaired or replaced, and
the replacement of the current pipeline with one of a larger
diameter does not increase the impact to parklands of the
replacement project. The permit issued to the Corporation has
sufficient safeguards in it to insure the rehabilitation and
restoration of parklands disturbed by the replacement project.
The one technical amendment we suggest would be to correct
the right-of-way number on p. 2, line 9 by striking ``16414''
and inserting ``16413''.
This concludes my prepared testimony, Mr. Chairman. I would
be pleased to answer any questions you or the committee might
Changes in Existing Law
In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law are made
by the bill S. 1310, as ordered reported, are shown as follows
(existing law proposed to be omitted is enclosed in black
brackets, new matter is printed in italic, existing law in
which no change is proposed is shown in roman):
ACT OF AUGUST 21, 1935 (16 U.S.C. 463(f)), AS AMENDED
AN ACT To provide for the preservation of historic American sites,
buildings, objects, and antiquities of national significance, and for
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of
the United States of America in Congress assembled, That it is
hereby declared that it is a national policy to preserve for
public use historic sites, buildings and objects of national
significance for the inspiration and benefit of the people of
the United States.
* * * * * * *
SEC. 3. * * *
(f) The National Park System Advisory Board shall continue
to exist until January 1,  2008. The provisions of
section 14(b) of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (the Act of
October 6, 1972; 86 Stat. 776) are hereby waived with respect
to the Board, but in all other respects, it shall be subject to
the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act.
* * * * * * *