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111th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                    111-253

======================================================================

 
AUTHORIZING THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE TO TERMINATE CERTAIN EASEMENTS 
   HELD BY THE SECRETARY ON LAND OWNED BY THE VILLAGE OF CASEYVILLE, 
ILLINOIS, AND TO TERMINATE ASSOCIATED CONTRACTUAL ARRANGEMENTS WITH THE 
                                VILLAGE

                                _______
                                

 September 10, 2009.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

    Mr. Peterson, from the Committee on Agriculture, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 511]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Agriculture, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 511) to authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to 
terminate certain easements held by the Secretary on land owned 
by the Village of Caseyville, Illinois, and to terminate 
associated contractual arrangements with the Village, having 
considered the same, report favorably thereon without amendment 
and recommend that the bill do pass.

                           BRIEF EXPLANATION

    H.R. 511 authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to 
terminate an easement held in the Village of Caseyville, 
Illinois. The Secretary may determine appropriate compensation 
in exchange for termination of this easement to be paid by the 
Village of Caseyville.

                            PURPOSE AND NEED

    H.R. 511 was introduced by Congressman Jerry Costello of 
Illinois. This bill would provide a limited authorization 
regarding the administration of the Village of Caseyville, 
Illinois floodplain easement.
    The Village and USDA executed a Warranty Easement Deed in 
1999 under the ``Emergency Watershed Protection Program.'' 
However, differences in approach on how best to protect and 
restore the floodplain led Caseyville to seek termination of 
the easement, including paying back the entire easement 
purchase price of $60,000 to USDA.
    H.R. 511 would allow the Natural Resource Conservation 
Service the flexibility to release the terms of the easement so 
that the village can use the land for flood prevention.
    This proposal had the support of then-Secretary Johanns 
under the Bush Administration and its support is continued by 
Secretary Vilsack and the Obama Administration.

                           SECTION-BY-SECTION

Section 1. Termination of NRCS Easements and Associated Contractual 
        Arrangements, Village of Caseyville, Illinois

    Authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to terminate any 
easement held by the Secretary on land owned by the Village of 
Caseyville, Illinois, and to terminate associated contractual 
arrangements with the Village.

                        COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    The Committee on Agriculture met, pursuant to notice, with 
a quorum present, on July 29, 2009, to consider H.R. 511 and 
other pending legislation.
    Members were recognized and each made a statement in 
support of the legislation.
    There being no amendments, Mr. Lucas moved that H.R. 511 be 
reported favorably to the House with the recommendation that it 
do pass.
    By a voice vote, and in the presence of a quorum, H.R. 511 
was ordered favorably reported to the House.
    Chairman Peterson then advised Members that pursuant to the 
Rules of the House of Representatives that Members have 2 
calendar days to file such views with the Committee. No Members 
came forth with intent to file additional views.
    Without objection, staff was given permission to make any 
necessary clerical, technical or conforming changes to reflect 
the intent of the Committee.
    Chairman Peterson thanked all the Members and adjourned the 
meeting subject to the call of the chair.

                   REPORTING THE BILL--ROLLCALL VOTES

    In compliance with clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the House of 
Representatives, H.R. 511 was reported by voice vote with a 
majority quorum present. There was no request for a recorded 
vote.

                      COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

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

           BUDGET ACT COMPLIANCE (SECTIONS 308, 402, AND 423)

    The provisions of clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives and section 308(a)(1) of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974 (relating to estimates of new 
budget authority, new spending authority, new credit authority, 
or increased or decreased revenues or tax expenditures) are not 
considered applicable. The estimate and comparison required to 
be prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office 
under clause 3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives and sections 402 and 423 of the Congressional 
Budget Act of 1974 submitted to the Committee prior to the 
filing of this report are as follows:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                   Washington, DC, August 14, 2009.
Hon. Collin C. Peterson,
Chairman, Committee on Agriculture,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 511, a bill to 
authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to terminate certain 
easements held by the Secretary on land owned by the village of 
Caseyville, Illinois, and to terminate associated contractual 
arrangements with the village.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Deborah Reis.
            Sincerely,
                                         Robert A. Sunshine
                            (For Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director).  
    Enclosure.

H.R. 511--A bill to authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to terminate 
        certain easements held by the Secretary on land owned by the 
        village of Caseyville, Illinois, and to terminate associated 
        contractual arrangements with the village

    H.R. 511 would authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to 
terminate any easement (and associated agreements) on land 
owned by Caseyville, Illinois. The bill would allow the 
Secretary to determine any appropriate compensation to be 
received from the village. Based on information provided by the 
Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) at the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture, CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 511 
would have no significant effect on direct spending and no 
effect on discretionary spending or revenues.
    The 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 
governments.
    Under H.R. 511, the NRCS would be able to terminate a 
floodplain easement on 44 acres of land owned by Caseyville. In 
exchange for the termination, Caseyville would repay the NRCS 
the $60,000 that the village received as compensation (for 
restrictions on use of the land) under the original easement 
agreement in 1999. That payment would increase offsetting 
receipts (a credit against direct spending), probably in fiscal 
year 2010. The receipts would be credited to the general fund 
of the U.S. Treasury.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Deborah Reis. 
The estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                    PERFORMANCE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

    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 objections of this legislation are to 
authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to terminate certain 
easements held by the Secretary on land owned by the Village of 
Caseyville, Illinois, and to terminate associated contractual 
arrangements with the Village.

                   CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT

    Pursuant to clause 3(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee finds the 
Constitutional authority for this legislation in Article I, 
clause 8, section 18, that grants Congress the power to make 
all laws necessary and proper for carrying out the powers 
vested by Congress in the Constitution of the United States or 
in any department or officer thereof.

                        COMMITTEE COST ESTIMATE

    Pursuant to clause 3(d)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee report incorporates the 
cost estimate prepared by the Director of the Congressional 
Budget Office pursuant to sections 402 and 423 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

                      ADVISORY COMMITTEE STATEMENT

    No advisory committee within the meaning of section 5(b) of 
the Federal Advisory Committee Act was 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).

                       FEDERAL MANDATES STATEMENT

    The Committee adopted 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).

  EARMARK STATEMENT REQUIRED BY CLAUSE 9 OF RULE XXI OF THE RULES OF 
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

    H.R. 511 does not contain any congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined in 
clause 9(d), 9(e), or 9(f) of rule XXI of the rules of the 
House Representatives.