[House Report 110-504]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



110th Congress                                            Rept. 110-504
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                      Part 2

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



 
                   21ST CENTURY WATER COMMISSION ACT

                                _______
                                

  June 4, 2008.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

Mr. Oberstar, from the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 135]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom 
was referred the bill (H.R. 135) to establish the Twenty-First 
Century Water Commission to study and develop recommendations 
for a comprehensive water strategy to address future water 
needs, having considered the same, report favorably thereon 
with an amendment and recommend that the bill as amended do 
pass.
  The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. 21ST CENTURY WATER COMMISSION.

  (a) Establishment.--There is established a commission to be known as 
the 21st Century Water Commission (in this section referred to as the 
``Commission'').
  (b) Duties.--The duties of the Commission shall be to--
          (1) use existing water studies and assessments and conduct 
        such additional studies and assessments as may be necessary, 
        including studies and assessments on climate change impacts, 
        to--
                  (A) project future water supply needs and demand;
                  (B) develop national and regional assessments on 
                flood risk and water availability; and
                  (C) develop national and regional trends related to 
                water quality;
          (2) study current water management programs of Federal, 
        interstate, State, and local agencies and private sector 
        entities directed at increasing water supplies, managing flood 
        risk, and improving the availability, reliability, and quality 
        of water resources; and
          (3) develop recommendations, in consultation with 
        representatives of such agencies and entities, for a 
        comprehensive water strategy that--
                  (A) identifies incentives to ensure an adequate and 
                dependable supply of water to meet the needs of the 
                United States for the next 50 years;
                  (B) considers all available technologies and other 
                methods to optimize water supply reliability, 
                availability, and quality, while safeguarding and 
                enhancing the environment;
                  (C) suggests financing options, incentives, and 
                opportunities for development of comprehensive 
                watershed management plans, regional watershed 
                planning, holistically designed water resources 
                projects, and increased use of nonstructural elements 
                (including green infrastructure and low impact 
                development techniques);
                  (D) encourages, to the maximum extent practicable, 
                the integration of flood control and water supply 
                projects, including recommendations for capturing 
                excess water and flood water for conservation and 
                reuse;
                  (E) suggests options to promote the use of, and 
                reduce biases against, nonstructural elements 
                (including green infrastructure and low impact 
                development techniques) when managing stormwater, 
                including features that--
                          (i) preserve and restore natural processes, 
                        landforms (such as floodplains), natural 
                        storage, natural vegetated stream side buffers, 
                        wetlands, or other topographical features;
                          (ii) utilize natural design techniques that 
                        infiltrate, filter, store, evaporate, and 
                        detain water close to its source; or
                          (iii) minimize the use of impervious 
                        surfaces;
                  (F) encourages the avoidance and minimization of 
                adverse impacts to natural systems, and where possible, 
                the restoration of natural systems; and
                  (G) addresses other objectives related to a 
                comprehensive water strategy which the Commission shall 
                consider appropriate.
  (c) Development of a Comprehensive Water Strategy.--
          (1) Impacts of climate change.--In developing recommendations 
        for a comprehensive water strategy, the Commission shall--
                  (A) evaluate the effectiveness of existing hazard 
                mitigation strategies and contingency planning 
                provisions for Federal, interstate, State, and local 
                water management programs in light of climate change 
                impacts, including sea level rise, changing weather 
                patterns, increased risk of flooding or drought, and 
                associated impacts to water quality;
                  (B) consider and evaluate the impacts of climate 
                change;
                  (C) include strategies for using best available 
                climate science in projections of future flood and 
                drought risk, and for developing hazard mitigation 
                strategies to protect water quality in extreme weather 
                conditions caused by climate change; and
                  (D) identify adaptation techniques, or further 
                research needs of adaptation techniques, for responding 
                to climate change impacts.
          (2) Policy considerations.--In developing recommendations for 
        a comprehensive water strategy, the Commission shall--
                  (A) respect the primary role of States in 
                adjudicating, administering, and regulating water 
                rights and water uses;
                  (B) identify whether recommendations are consistent 
                with existing laws, treaties, decrees, and interstate 
                compacts;
                  (C) identify duplication among Federal governmental 
                programs, and make recommendations to improve 
                coordination among Federal, interstate, State, and 
                local agencies; and
                  (D) avoid suggesting strategies for increased 
                mandates on State and local governments.
  (d) Membership.--
          (1) Number and appointment.--The Commission shall be composed 
        of 11 members who shall be appointed, not later than 90 days 
        after the date of enactment of this Act, as follows:
                  (A) 3 members appointed by the President.
                  (B) 3 members appointed by the Speaker of the House 
                of Representatives from a list of 6 individuals--
                          (i) 3 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        chairman of the Committee on Transportation and 
                        Infrastructure of the House of Representatives; 
                        and
                          (ii) 3 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        chairman of the Committee on Natural Resources 
                        of the House of Representatives.
                  (C) 3 members appointed by the majority leader of the 
                Senate from a list of 6 individuals--
                          (i) 3 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        chairman of the Committee on Environment and 
                        Public Works of the Senate; and
                          (ii) 3 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        chairman of the Committee on Energy and Natural 
                        Resources of the Senate.
                  (D) 1 member appointed by the minority leader of the 
                House of Representatives from a list of 2 individuals--
                          (i) 1 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        ranking member of the Committee on 
                        Transportation and Infrastructure of the House 
                        of Representatives; and
                          (ii) 1 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        ranking member of the Committee on Natural 
                        Resources of the House of Representatives.
                  (E) 1 member appointed by the minority leader of the 
                Senate from a list of 2 individuals--
                          (i) 1 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        ranking member of the Committee on Environment 
                        and Public Works of the Senate; and
                          (ii) 1 nominated for that appointment by the 
                        ranking member of the Committee on Energy and 
                        Natural Resources of the Senate.
          (2) Qualifications.--
                  (A) Recognized standing and distinction.--Members 
                shall be appointed to the Commission from among 
                individuals who are of recognized standing and 
                distinction in water policy issues.
                  (B) Limitation.--A person while serving as a member 
                of the Commission may not hold any other position as an 
                officer or employee of the United States, except as a 
                retired officer or retired civilian employee of the 
                United States.
                  (C) Other considerations.--In appointing members of 
                the Commission, every effort shall be made to ensure 
                that the members represent a broad cross section of 
                regional and geographical perspectives in the United 
                States.
          (3) Chairperson.--The Chairperson of the Commission shall be 
        elected by a majority vote of the members of the Commission.
          (4) Terms.--Members of the Commission shall serve for the 
        life of the Commission.
          (5) Vacancies.--A vacancy on the Commission shall not affect 
        its operation and shall be filled in the manner in which the 
        original appointment was made.
          (6) Compensation and travel expenses.--Members of the 
        Commission shall serve without compensation; except that 
        members shall receive travel expenses, including per diem in 
        lieu of subsistence, in accordance with applicable provisions 
        under subchapter I of chapter 57, United States Code.
  (e) Meetings and Quorum.--
          (1) Meetings.--The Commission shall hold its first meeting 
        not later than 60 days after the date on which all original 
        members are appointed under subsection (d) and shall hold 
        additional meetings at the call of the Chairperson or a 
        majority of its members.
          (2) Quorum.--A majority of the members of the Commission 
        shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.
  (f) Staffing.--The Chairperson of the Commission may, without regard 
to the civil service laws and regulations, appoint and terminate an 
Executive Director and such other additional personnel as may be 
necessary for the Commission to perform its duties. The Executive 
Director shall be compensated at a rate not to exceed the annual rate 
of basic pay for GS-15 of the General Schedule. The employment and 
termination of an Executive Director shall be subject to confirmation 
by a majority of the members of the Commission.
  (g) Hearings.--
          (1) Minimum number.--The Commission shall hold no fewer than 
        10 hearings during the life of the Commission.
          (2) In conjunction with meetings.--Hearings may be held in 
        conjunction with meetings of the Commission.
          (3) Testimony and evidence.--The Commission may take such 
        testimony and receive such evidence as the Commission considers 
        appropriate to carry out this section.
          (4) Specified.--At least one hearing shall be held in 
        Washington, District of Columbia, for the purpose of taking 
        testimony of representatives of Federal agencies, national 
        organizations, and Members of Congress. At least one hearing 
        shall focus on potential water resource issues relating to 
        climate change and how to mitigate the harms of climate change-
        related weather events.
          (5) Nonspecified.--Hearings, other than those referred to in 
        paragraph (4), shall be scheduled in distinct geographical 
        regions of the United States. In conducting such hearings, the 
        Commission should seek to ensure testimony from individuals 
        with a diversity of experiences, including those who work on 
        water issues at all levels of government and in the private 
        sector.
  (h) Information and Support From Federal Agencies.--Upon request of 
the Commission, the head of a Federal department or agency shall--
          (1) provide to the Commission, within 30 days of the request, 
        such information as the Commission considers necessary to carry 
        out this section; and
          (2) detail to temporary duty with the Commission on a 
        reimbursable basis such personnel as the Commission considers 
        necessary to carry out this section.
  (i) Interim Reports.--Not later than one year after the date of the 
first meeting of the Commission, and every year thereafter, the 
Commission shall submit an interim report containing a detailed summary 
of its progress, including meetings held and hearings conducted before 
the date of the report, to--
          (1) the President; and
          (2) Congress.
  (j) Final Report.--As soon as practicable, but not later than 5 years 
after the date of the first meeting of the Commission, the Commission 
shall submit a final report containing a detailed statement of the 
findings and conclusions of the Commission and recommendations for 
legislation and other policies to implement such findings and 
conclusions to--
          (1) the President;
          (2) the Committee on Natural Resources and the Committee on 
        Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of 
        Representatives; and
          (3) the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and the 
        Committee on Environment and Public Works of the Senate.
  (k) Termination.--The Commission shall terminate not later than 30 
days after the date on which the Commission transmits a final report 
under subsection (j).
  (l) Applicability of Federal Advisory Committee Act.--The Federal 
Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App. 1 et seq.) shall not apply to the 
Commission.
  (m) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated $12,000,000 to carry out this section.

                       PURPOSE OF THE LEGISLATION

    H.R. 135, as amended, establishes a commission to examine 
water resource needs of the nation over the next 50 years and 
develop recommendations for a comprehensive water strategy to 
address these needs.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    The United States is a nation blessed with abundant water 
resources across much of the landscape. In addition, investment 
in water infrastructure has helped provide reliable water 
resources for the more arid regions, as well as those with less 
reliable water supplies. The nation's waters support myriad 
human uses and needs, power generation, navigation, and 
industry while also providing for a globally diverse freshwater 
ecosystem.
    The water resources of the United States are not evenly 
distributed across the country, resulting in very different 
water resource management strategies. Historically, areas such 
as the Northeast have relatively abundant water resources 
requiring mostly flood protection, while the West and 
Southwest, in particular, are quite dry necessitating greater 
water supply infrastructure.
    These widely diverse conditions around the United States 
are all managed differently and often independently of other 
projects. There are many Federal and state agencies with 
management responsibilities, in addition to the very different 
water laws of the various states. Most of this has resulted in 
very local views of project operations and needs with little 
consideration of the broader watersheds that surround these 
projects. In addition, there have been increased demands for 
water resources, in part due to increased population and an 
increased recognition of the need to reserve water for aquatic 
ecosystems, as well as consumptive uses. These different 
operations and conditions are resulting in greater conflict 
over water resources and are potentially subject to changing 
climactic conditions.
    Since the 1950s, there have been at least seven different 
commissions empanelled to examine Federal water policy. The 
last review of water policy was the Western Water Policy 
Advisory Review Commission which was authorized in 1992 and 
issued its report in 1998. There has not been a comprehensive 
review of Federal water policy since 1973. Given the current 
challenges that exist in a number of large watersheds, and the 
greater challenges to be faced with changes brought on by 
factors such as climate change, increasing population, 
endangered species, and other competing uses there needs to be 
a comprehensive review of national water policies, and an 
assessment that starts to review watershed needs and planning. 
The 21st Century Water Commission provides an important update 
of the water resource needs of the nation looking forward over 
the next 50 years and takes into account possible impacts on 
water resources due to global climate change.
    H.R. 135, as amended, includes specific direction to the 
Commission to consider impacts of climate change and climate 
change science in the review and recommendations. The bill, as 
amended, provides that the composition of the Commission is 11 
members, with three members appointed by the President, three 
members appointed by the Speaker of the House, one member 
appointed by the Minority Leader of the House, three members 
appointed by the Majority Leader of the Senate, and one member 
appointed by the Minority Leader of the Senate. H.R. 135, as 
amended authorizes the Commission for five years and authorizes 
$12 million to be appropriated to the Commission to complete 
its duties.

                         SUMMARY OF LEGISLATION

Section 1. 21st Century Water Commission

            Subsection (a) Establishment
    The subsection establishes the ``21st Century Water 
Commission''.
            Subsection (b) Duties
    The subsection outlines the duties of the Commission. The 
duties include utilizing water studies and assessments, 
including studies and assessments that take into account 
impacts of climate change, to project future water supply needs 
and demand, develop national and regional assessments of flood 
risk and water availability, and develop national and regional 
trends related to water quality. The Commission should study 
current water management programs of Federal, interstate, 
state, and local agencies for increasing water supplies, 
managing flood risk, and improving reliability and quality of 
water resources.
    Finally, the Commission should develop recommendations, in 
consultation with representatives of Federal, interstate, 
state, and local agencies, for a comprehensive water strategy 
that identifies incentives to ensure an adequate and dependable 
supply of water to meet the needs of the United States for the 
next 50 years; considers all available technologies and other 
methods to optimize water supply reliability, availability, and 
quality, while safeguarding and enhancing the environment; 
suggests financing options, incentives, and opportunities for 
development of comprehensive watershed management plans, 
regional watershed planning, holistically designed water 
resources projects, and increased use of nonstructural elements 
(including green infrastructure and low impact development 
techniques); encourage, to the maximum extent practicable, the 
integration of flood control and water supply projects, 
including recommendations for capturing excess water and flood 
water for conservation and reuse; suggest options to promote 
the use of, and reduce biases against, nonstructural elements 
(including green infrastructure and low-impact development 
techniques) when managing stormwater (including features that 
preserve and restore natural processes, landforms, natural 
storage, natural vegetated stream side buffers, wetlands, or 
other topographical features; utilizes natural design 
techniques that infiltrate, filter, store, evaporate, and 
detain water close to its source; or minimizes the use of 
impervious surfaces; encourages the avoidance and minimization 
of adverse impacts to natural systems, and where possible, the 
restoration of natural systems; and addresses other objectives 
related to a comprehensive water strategy which the Commission 
considers appropriate.
    The extensive list of duties ensures that the Commission 
looks at a wide array of issues and concerns as it proceeds to 
develop the comprehensive water strategy. While water supply is 
one aspect of the duties for the Commission to review, the 
overall strategy should look at a wide array of concerns at the 
same time it is considering ways to integrate the multiple 
water resource demands that can occur, and how to better manage 
for multiple purposes. This review and strategy recommendations 
must take into account the impacts of climate change and look 
at non-structural alternatives that make use of natural 
processes and restore or enhance ecosystems. The duties of the 
Commission are not limited to those duties enumerated in this 
list.
            Subsection (c) Development of a comprehensive water 
                    strategy
    This subsection directs the development of a comprehensive 
water strategy and outlines the major areas of consideration to 
be included in such a strategy.
    Subsection (c)(1) highlights the special consideration and 
impacts that might result in water resource needs in light of 
global climate change and specifically directs the Commission 
to include the impacts of climate change as it develops the 
comprehensive water strategy. The strategy should evaluate the 
effectiveness of existing hazard mitigation strategies and 
contingency planning provisions for Federal, interstate, state, 
and local water management programs in light of climate change 
impacts, including sea level rise, changing weather patterns, 
increased risk of flooding or drought, and associated impacts 
to water quality; consider and evaluate the impacts of climate 
change; include strategies for using the best available climate 
science in projections of future flood and drought risk, and 
for developing hazard mitigation strategies to protect water 
quality in extreme weather conditions caused by climate change; 
and identify adaptation techniques, or further research needs 
of adaptation techniques, for responding to climate change 
impacts.
    These climate change provisions direct the Commission to 
review existing hazard mitigation strategies at all levels of 
government and how climate change might impact these strategies 
and plans. The comprehensive strategy also will consider 
strategies that look at best available climate change science 
in projecting future risks for hazard mitigation plans. 
Finally, the comprehensive strategy should identify adaptation 
techniques that would be useful for responding to climate 
change impacts, as well as identifying further research that 
might be needed in adaptation to climate change.
    Subsection (c)(2) identifies policy considerations that the 
Commission shall use as guidance in developing the 
comprehensive strategy. The policy considerations include 
respecting the primary role of States in adjudicating, 
administering, and regulating water rights and water uses; 
identifying whether recommendations are consistent with 
existing laws, treaties, decrees, and interstate compacts; 
identifying duplication among Federal governmental programs, 
and making recommendations to improve coordination among 
Federal, interstate, state, and local agencies; and avoiding 
suggesting strategies for increased mandates on state and local 
governments.
    The policy considerations are defined in recognition that 
there are many different entities that have interests and 
rights in water resource management. Water use regulation is 
primarily a state and tribal responsibility. This includes the 
different types of water law as practiced in western United 
States (prior appropriation), versus the eastern United States 
(riparian rights) as well as unique water laws and interests as 
represented by Hawaii or federally recognized tribes. These 
duties also make clear that the Commission will ensure the 
recommendations are consistent with existing laws, treaties 
(with tribes and with other sovereign nations), decrees, and 
interstate compacts.
            Subsection (d) Membership
    The subsection defines the composition and qualifications 
of the Commission. The Commission shall consist of 11 members, 
three members appointed by the President, three members 
appointed by the Speaker of the House, one member appointed by 
the Minority Leader of the House, three members appointed by 
the Majority Leader of the Senate, and one member appointed by 
the Minority Leader of the Senate. The members of the 
Commission shall be recognized in the field of water resources 
and may not be a current Federal employee. A Chairperson will 
be elected by the members of Commission. The members shall 
serve for the full term of the Commission.
            Subsection (e) Meetings and quorum
    The Commission shall meet not later than 60 days after all 
of the original members are appointed. The Commission shall 
hold additional meetings at the call of the Chairperson or a 
majority of its members.
            Subsection (f) Staffing
    The Chairperson of the Commission has authority to appoint 
and terminate an Executive Director and such other staff as is 
needed. The employment and termination of an Executive Director 
shall be subject to confirmation by a majority of the members 
of the Commission.
            Subsection (g) Hearings
    The Commission shall hold a minimum of 10 hearings. At 
least one hearing will be held in Washington, DC, to receive 
testimony from representatives of Federal agencies, national 
organizations, and Members of Congress. At least one hearing 
shall focus on water resource issues related to climate change 
and mitigation of adverse impacts from climate change-related 
weather events. Other hearings should be held in locations to 
ensure diversity of geographic concerns and individual 
experiences.
            Subsection (h) Information and support from Federal 
                    agencies
    Upon request of the Commission, the head of a Federal 
department or agency shall provide to the Commission, within 30 
days of the request, such information as the Commission 
considers necessary to carry out this section; and detail to 
temporary duty with the Commission on a reimbursable basis such 
personnel as the Commission considers necessary to carry out 
this section.
            Subsection (i) Interim reports
    Not later than one year after the date of the first meeting 
of the Commission and every year thereafter, the Commission 
shall submit an interim report containing a detailed summary of 
its progress to the President and Congress.
            Subsection (j) Final report
    As soon as practicable, but not later than five years after 
the date of the first meeting of the Commission, the Commission 
shall submit a final report containing a detailed statement of 
the findings and conclusions of the Commission and 
recommendations for legislation and other policies to implement 
such findings and conclusions to the President, the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure and the Committee on 
Natural Resources of the House of Representatives; and the 
Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and the Committee on 
Environment and Public Works of the Senate.
            Subsection (k) Termination
    The Commission shall terminate not later than 30 days after 
the Commission transmits the final report.
            Subsection (l) Applicability of Federal Advisory Committee 
                    Act
    The Federal Advisory Committee Act shall not apply to the 
Commission. Nothing in this waiver indicates intent by Congress 
that the Commission should act in a non-public fashion. The 
Commission shall make every effort for all proceedings to be 
conducted in a public and fully transparent manner with 
reasonable public notice of all meetings and proceedings.
            Subsection (m) Authorization of appropriations
    This subsection authorizes $12 million to be appropriated 
to carry out this section.

            LEGISLATIVE HISTORY AND COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    On January 4, 2007, Representative John Linder introduced 
H.R. 135. The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural 
Resources, and also referred to the Committee on Transportation 
and Infrastructure. On October 10, 2007, Committee on Natural 
Resources met to consider H.R. 135. The Committee on Natural 
Resources ordered the bill reported favorably to the House by 
unanimous consent.
    On November 8, 2007, the Subcommittee on Water Resources 
and Environment of the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure held a hearing on H.R. 135. Testimony supported 
the need for a national Water Commission to conduct a broad 
based review of water resource needs over the next 50 years. 
Testimony was received that expressly called for the inclusion 
of climate change impacts on the nation's water resources and 
the need for a more integrated watershed planning and 
implementation of water resource projects.
    On May 7, 2008, the Subcommittee on Water Resources and 
Environment considered H.R. 135 and adopted an amendment in the 
nature of a substitute to the bill by voice vote. The 
Subcommittee favorably recommended the bill, as amended, to the 
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, by voice vote.
    On May 15, 2008, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure met in open session, and ordered H.R. 135, as 
amended, reported favorably to the House by voice vote with a 
quorum present.

                              RECORD VOTES

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires each committee report to include the 
total number of votes cast for and against on each record vote 
on a motion to report and on any amendment offered to the 
measure or matter, and the names of those members voting for 
and against. There were no recorded votes taken in connection 
with ordering H.R. 135 reported. A motion to order H.R. 135, as 
amended, reported favorably to the House was agreed to by voice 
vote with a quorum present.

                      COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

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

                          COST OF LEGISLATION

    Clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives does not apply where a cost estimate and 
comparison prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office under section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974 has been timely submitted prior to the filing of the 
report and is included in the report. Such a cost estimate is 
included in this report.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII

    1. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(2) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, and 
308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee 
references the report of the Congressional Budget Office 
included in the report.
    2. 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 objectives of this legislation are to 
establish a Commission to conduct a comprehensive review and 
provide recommendations for water resources needs in the United 
States.
    3. With respect to the requirement of clause 3(c)(3) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the 
Committee has received the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 135 
from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office:
                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                      Washington, DC, May 22, 2008.
Hon. James L. Oberstar,
Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr, Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 135, the Twenty-
First Century Water Commission Act of 2007.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Tyler 
Kruzich.
            Sincerely,
                                         Robert A. Sunshine
                                   (For Peter R. Orszag, Director).
    Enclosure.

H.R. 135--Twenty-First Century Water Commission Act of 2007

    Summary: H.R. 135 would establish the Twenty-First Century 
Water Commission. The commission's responsibilities would 
include projecting future water supply and demand in the United 
States, studying the management of that supply, and preparing a 
comprehensive strategy for its management in the future. The 
bill would require the commission to complete that work within 
five years.
    Assuming appropriation of the amount specified in the 
legislation, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 135 would 
cost $12 million over the 2009-2013 period. Enacting H.R. 135 
would not affect direct spending or revenues.
    H.R. 135 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) 
and would not affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 135 is shown in the following table. 
The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 300 
(natural resources and environment).

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                    By fiscal year in millions of dollars--
                                                              --------------------------------------------------
                                                                2009    2010    2011    2012    2013   2009-2013
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  CHANGING IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION

Estimated Authorization Level................................       3       3       3       3       0        12
Estimated Outlays............................................       2       3       3       3       1        12
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Basis of estimate: For this estimate, CBO assumes that H.R. 
135 will be enacted near the beginning of fiscal year 2009 and 
that the $12 million authorized to be appropriated by the bill 
will be provided over the next four years. Estimates of 
spending are based on historical spending patterns of similar 
activities.
    H.R. 135 would require the President and the Congress to 
appoint 11 members of the commission before it could meet. CBO 
expects that the commission would hold its first meeting in the 
second half of fiscal year 2009 and that the commission would 
issue its final report in 2013.
    Intergovernmental and private-sector impact: H.R. 135 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would not affect the budgets of state, 
local, or tribal governments.
    Previous estimate: On October 15, 2007, CBO transmitted a 
cost estimate for H.R. 135, the Twenty-First Century Water 
Commission Act of 2007 as ordered reported by the House 
Committee on Natural Resources on October 10, 2007. The Natural 
Resources Committee's version of the bill would authorize the 
appropriation of $9 million for the proposed commission.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Tyler Kruzich; Impact 
on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Neil Hood; Impact on 
the Private Sector: Amy Petz.
    Estimate approved by: Theresa Gullo, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                     COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XXI

    Pursuant to clause 9 of rule XXI of the Rules of the House 
of Representatives, H.R. 135, the Twenty-First Century Water 
Commission of 2007, 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 of Representatives.

                   CONSTITUTIONAL AUTHORITY STATEMENT

    Pursuant to clause (3)(d)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, committee reports on a bill or 
joint resolution of a public character shall include a 
statement citing the specific powers granted to the Congress in 
the Constitution to enact the measure. The Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure finds that Congress has the 
authority to enact this measure pursuant to its powers granted 
under article I, section 8 of the Constitution.

                       FEDERAL MANDATES STATEMENT

    The Committee adopts 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).

                        PREEMPTION CLARIFICATION

    Section 423 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 
requires the report of any Committee on a bill or joint 
resolution to include a statement on the extent to which the 
bill or joint resolution is intended to preempt state, local, 
or tribal law. The Committee states that H.R. 135 does not 
preempt any state, local, or tribal law.

                      ADVISORY COMMITTEE STATEMENT

    This legislation creates a Commission and waives 
applicability of the Federal Advisory Committee Act.

                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).

         CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW MADE BY THE BILL, AS REPORTED

    H.R. 135 makes no changes in existing law.