[House Report 109-430]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]

109th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                     109-430




 April 25, 2006.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed


  Mr. Pombo, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 4204]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 4204) to direct the Secretary of the Interior to transfer 
ownership of the American River Pump Station Project, and for 
other purposes, having considered the same, report favorably 
thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 4204 is to direct the Secretary of the 
Interior to transfer ownership of the American River Pump 
Station Project, and for other purposes.


    To utilize its water right from the American River, the 
Placer County Water Agency constructed a permanent pump station 
on the river during the 1960s. At the same time, Congress 
debated and eventually authorized construction of the Auburn 
Dam near the pump station. The multi-purpose dam was envisioned 
to provide flood control, hydroelectric power, and irrigation 
water and would have been located northeast of Sacramento. 
During initial construction on the dam, a land purchase 
contract [#14-06-859-308] was signed between the Bureau of 
Reclamation and the Agency. The contract transferred the 
Agency's land and pumping plant to the United States to 
facilitate construction of the dam. In return, Reclamation 
agreed to provide the Agency a temporary water supply until the 
dam was completed. Once completed, the dam would provide water 
via gravity-fed diversions.
    Construction on Auburn Dam was halted 30 years ago and has 
not resumed. With the federal government's failure to complete 
the dam, coupled with the removal of the original, locally-
owned pump station, the Agency is unable to meet its water 
needs and does not have long-term water-use certainty. Since 
1990, Reclamation has installed seasonal pumps to help the 
Agency meet its growing water demand during the dry summer 
months. Due to the location of the installation, the pumps have 
to be removed before each winter to prevent damage from high 
winter water flows. The pumps are re-installed each spring, but 
they do not fully meet the Agency's water supply requirements, 
are not reliable, and are expensive to re-install. For this 
reason, on September 11, 2003, Reclamation and the Agency 
entered into a new contract [#02-LC-20-7790] that requires 
Reclamation to construct a new permanent pump station for the 
    The new contract requires Reclamation to construct the 
American River Pump Station Project, consisting of a diversion/
intake structure, a pump station, and associated facilities 
including pipelines, access roads, power lines, and safety 
features in the American River Canyon. The purpose of the 
Project is to allow the Agency to have year-round access to 
divert up to 35,500 acre-feet (an acre-foot equals 
approximately 326,000 gallons) annually of its water 
entitlement on the American River. Most of the Project costs 
would be paid by Reclamation, with some additional financing 
paid by the Agency and the State of California. The contract 
also stipulates that the Project would be transferred from the 
federal government to the Agency after completion; however, 
Congressional authorization would be needed for the transfer. 
This legislation authorizes the transfer after the Project and 
all necessary environmental analyses are completed.

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 4204 was introduced on November 2, 2005, by 
Congressman John Doolittle (R-CA). The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Resources, and within the Committee to the 
Subcommittee on Water and Power. On February 8, 2006, the 
Subcommittee held a hearing on the bill. On March 29, 2006, the 
Full Resources Committee met to consider the bill. The 
Subcommittee on Water and Power was discharged from further 
consideration of the bill by unanimous consent. The bill was 
then ordered favorably reported to the House of Representatives 
by unanimous consent.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Short title

    This section cites the short title of this bill as the 
``American River Pump Station Project Transfer Act of 2005.''

Section 2. Authority to transfer

    This section directs the Secretary of the Interior to 
transfer ownership of the American River Pump Station Project 
in Auburn, California, to the Placer County Water Agency in 
accordance with the terms of Contract No. 02-LC-20-7790 between 
the United States and the Placer County Water Agency.

Section 3. Federal costs nonreimbursable

    This section clarifies that all federal costs associated 
with the American River Pump Station Project are 

Section 4. Grant of real property interest

    This section authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to 
grant title to the Placer County Water Agency to meet the 
contractual obligations of Land Purchase Contract No. 14-06-

Section 5. Compliance with environmental laws

    This section states that the Secretary of the Interior 
shall comply with all applicable requirements under the 
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Endangered 
Species Act (ESA), and any other laws applicable to the land 
and facilities. It also states that nothing in this Act 
modifies or alters any obligations under NEPA or ESA.

Section 6. Release from liability

    This section releases the United States from liability from 
damages arising out of any act, omission, or occurrence 
relating to the land and facilities once the title is 


    Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee on Resources' oversight findings and recommendations 
are reflected in the body of this report.


    Article I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United 
States grants Congress the authority to enact this bill.


    1. Cost of Legislation. Clause 3(d)(2) of rule XIII of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives requires an estimate and 
a comparison by the Committee of the costs which would be 
incurred in carrying out this bill. However, clause 3(d)(3)(B) 
of that Rule provides that this requirement does not apply when 
the Committee has included in its report a timely submitted 
cost estimate of the bill prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
    2. Congressional Budget Act. As required by clause 3(c)(2) 
of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, this 
bill does not contain any new budget authority, spending 
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in 
revenues or tax expenditures.
    3. General Performance Goals and Objectives. This bill does 
not authorize funding and therefore, clause 3(c)(4) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives does not 
    4. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate. Under clause 
3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives and section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974, the Committee has received the following cost estimate 
for this bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget 

H.R. 4204--American River Pump Station Project Transfer Act of 2005

    H.R. 4204 would direct the Secretary of the Interior to 
convey certain lands and a water pumping facility that is under 
construction on the American River to the Placer County Water 
Agency in California. Based on information from the Bureau of 
Reclamation, CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 4204 would have 
no significant impact on the federal budget.
    The bureau is constructing a water pumping station to 
replace the station that it acquired and dismantled in the 
early 1970s to build the planned Auburn Dam. To date, however, 
the Auburn Dam has not been built and there are no current 
plans to build it. The bureau estimates that construction of 
the water pumping facility will be completed in fiscal year 
2008. Under this bill, once the pumping station is constructed, 
the Secretary would convey it and some adjacent lands and 
facilities to the Placer County Water Agency. The bureau 
installs a temporary water pump each spring so that the agency 
can access its water rights. The pump must be removed every 
fall due to high flood waters during the winter months. The 
bureau spends between $220,000 to $450,000 annually to operate 
and maintain this temporary pumping station. CBO estimates that 
the federal government could save those operation and 
maintenance costs once the new station is finished.
    H.R. 4204 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. 
The facilities and land conveyance authorized by this bill 
would be accepted voluntarily by the Placer County Water 
Agency. Thus, any costs they might incur to comply with the 
conditions of conveyance would be incurred voluntarily.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Julie Middleton. 
The estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy 
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 104-4

    This bill contains no unfunded mandates.


    This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or 
tribal law.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    If enacted, this bill would make no changes in existing