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                                                      Calendar No. 147
115th Congress      }                                   {       Report
                                 SENATE
 1st Session        }                                   {      115-110

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



 
                         FORT ONTARIO STUDY ACT

                                _______
                                

                 June 14, 2017.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

        Ms. Murkowski, from the Committee on Energy and Natural 
                   Resources, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany H.R. 46]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, to which was 
referred the bill (H.R. 46) to authorize the Secretary of the 
Interior to conduct a special resource study of Fort Ontario in 
the State of New York, having considered the same, reports 
favorably thereon with an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute and recommends that the bill, as amended, do pass.
    The amendment is as follows:
    Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Fort Ontario Study Act''.

SEC. 2. DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
          (1) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        the Interior.
          (2) Study area.--The term ``study area'' means Fort Ontario 
        in Oswego, New York.

SEC. 3. FORT ONTARIO SPECIAL RESOURCE STUDY.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary shall conduct a special resource 
study of the study area.
    (b) Contents.--In conducting the study under subsection (a), the 
Secretary shall--
          (1) evaluate the national significance of the study area;
          (2) determine the suitability and feasibility of designating 
        the study area as a unit of the National Park System;
          (3) consider other alternatives for preservation, protection, 
        and interpretation of the study area by the Federal Government, 
        State or local government entities, or private and nonprofit 
        organizations;
          (4) consult with interested Federal agencies, State or local 
        governmental entities, private and nonprofit organizations, or 
        any other interested individuals; and
          (5) identify cost estimates for any Federal acquisition, 
        development, interpretation, operation, and maintenance 
        associated with the alternatives.
    (c) Applicable Law.--The study required under subsection (a) shall 
be conducted in accordance with section 100507 of title 54, United 
States Code.
    (d) Report.--Not later than 3 years after the date on which funds 
are first made available to carry out the study under subsection (a), 
the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Natural Resources of the 
House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources of the Senate a report that describes--
          (1) the results of the study; and
          (2) any conclusions and recommendations of the Secretary.

                                PURPOSE

    The purpose of H.R. 46 is to authorize the Secretary of the 
Interior to conduct a special resource study of Fort Ontario in 
the State of New York.

                          BACKGROUND AND NEED

    H.R. 46 authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to conduct 
a special resource study of Fort Ontario, a military 
installation in Oswego, New York. In conducting the study, the 
Secretary of the Interior shall evaluate the site's national 
significance; determine the suitability and feasibility of 
designating Fort Ontario as a unit of the National Park System; 
consider other alternatives for preservation, protection, and 
interpretation of the lands by Federal, State, or local 
governmental entities, or private and nonprofit organizations; 
consult with Federal agencies and interested parties; and 
identify the cost of acquisition and maintenance of alternative 
National Park Service (NPS) units.
    Fort Ontario was originally built by the British in 1755 to 
protect the area around the east end of Lake Ontario. Located 
at the mouth of the Oswego River in Oswego, New York, Fort 
Ontario directly overlooks the shores of Lake Ontario. In 1756, 
the French Army destroyed the fort, also known as the ``Fort of 
the Six Nations.'' In 1759, the British built a much stronger 
and larger fort on the same site.
    During the American Revolution, the British abandoned Fort 
Ontario, and in 1778 American troops destroyed the fort. 
Despite the surrender at Yorktown in 1781, the British 
reoccupied Oswego in 1782 and rebuilt Fort Ontario for the 
third time. The British held it until 1796, 13 years after the 
end of the Revolutionary War, before finally turning it and 
other British forts in the Northwest Territory over to the 
United States pursuant to the Jay Treaty of 1795.
    During the War of 1812, British forces captured and 
destroyed the fort. After a period of abandonment, new 
construction started in part due to tensions with Great Britain 
as well as to check smuggling activities between Canada and the 
United States. Construction of a fourth Fort Ontario commenced 
in 1839, amidst tensions arising from Canada's Patriot War. 
Later, amid fears of British intervention in the Civil War, the 
United States upgraded defenses of the fort in 1860.
    Fort Ontario later served as a training post from 1903 to 
1905, a hospital camp during World War I, and a training 
installation for military police and anti-aircraft units in 
World War II. Additionally, from August 1944 to February 1946, 
Fort Ontario operated as the nation's only emergency refugee 
shelter during World War II and housed approximately 982 
refugees, predominantly of Jewish descent.
    After nearly two hundred years of active military use, the 
United States Army abandoned the fort in 1946 and transferred 
it to the State of New York. In 1953, Fort Ontario opened as a 
New York state historic site. The fort was added to the 
National Register of Historic Places in 1970 and remains open 
to the public today.

                          LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    H.R. 46 was introduced in the House of Representatives by 
Representatives Katko, Slaughter, and Tenney on January 3, 
2017, and referred to the House Committee on Natural Resources. 
On January 30, 2017, H.R. 46 passed the House of 
Representatives by a voice vote. H.R. 46 was received in the 
Senate on January 31, 2017.
    Senators Gillibrand and Schumer introduced a companion 
measure, S. 55, on January 5, 2017.
    In the 114th Congress, Senators Gillibrand and Schumer 
introduced a similar measure, S. 2622, on March 3, 2016. The 
companion bill, H.R. 4202, was introduced in the House of 
Representatives by Representative Katko on December 9, 2015.
    The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources met in 
open business session on March 30, 2017, and ordered H.R. 46 
and S. 55 favorably reported, as amended.

                        COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION

    The Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, in open 
business session on March 30, 2017, by a majority voice vote of 
a quorum present, recommends that the Senate pass H.R. 46, if 
amended as described herein.

                          COMMITTEE AMENDMENT

    During its consideration of H.R. 46, the Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources adopted an amendment in the nature 
of a substitute to strike the findings and make conforming 
changes to the special resource study language. The amendment 
is further described in the section-by-section analysis.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    Section 1 provides a short title for the measure.

Section 2. Definitions

    Section 2 provides the definitions of key terms.

Section 3. Fort Ontario special resource study

    Section 3(a) requires the Secretary to conduct a special 
resource study.
    Subsection (b) requires the special resource study to 
evaluate the national significance of the area; determine 
suitability and feasibility of the study area; consider 
alternatives provided by stakeholders; consult with federal, 
state and local stakeholders; and identify costs of 
alternatives.
    Subsection (c) requires the study to be conducted in 
accordance with 54 U.S.C. 100507.
    Subsection (d) requires the Secretary to submit a report on 
the study to the House Committee on Natural Resources and the 
Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources no later than 
three years after which funds are made available to carry out 
the study.

                   COST AND BUDGETARY CONSIDERATIONS

    The following estimate of the costs of this measure has 
been provided by the Congressional Budget Office:
    H.R. 46 would require the National Park Service (NPS) to 
conduct a special resource study of Fort Ontario, a state 
historic site in Oswego, New York. (Fort Ontario was used 
during the French and Indian War, the Revolutionary War, and 
the War of 1812.) The study would determine whether the site 
meets NPS criteria for inclusion in the National Park System. 
Based on information provided by the NPS, CBO estimates that 
implementing the legislation would cost about $250,000; such 
spending would be subject to the availability of appropriated 
funds.
    Enacting H.R. 46 would not affect direct spending or 
revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply. CBO 
estimates that enacting H.R. 46 would not increase net direct 
spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four consecutive 
10-year periods beginning in 2028.
    H.R. 46 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would not affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    On April 7, 2017, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for S. 
55, the Fort Ontario Study Act, as ordered reported by the 
Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on March 30, 
2017. The two pieces of legislation are similar and CBO's 
estimate of their budgetary effects is the same.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Jon Sperl. The 
estimate was approved by H. Samuel Papenfuss, 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 H.R. 46. The bill is not a regulatory measure in 
the sense of imposing Government-established standards or 
significant economic responsibilities on private individuals 
and businesses.
    No personal information would be collected in administering 
the program. Therefore, there would be no impact on personal 
privacy.
    Little, if any, additional paperwork would result from the 
enactment of H.R. 46, as ordered reported.

                   CONGRESSIONALLY DIRECTED SPENDING

    H.R. 46, as ordered reported, does not contain any 
congressionally directed spending items, limited tax benefits, 
or limited tariff benefits as defined in rule XLIV of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate.

                        EXECUTIVE COMMUNICATIONS

    Executive Communications on H.R. 46 were not requested by 
the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources in the 115th 
Congress.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee notes that no 
changes in existing law are made by the bill as ordered 
reported.

                                  [all]