[116th Congress Public Law 223]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]

[[Page 134 STAT. 1067]]

Public Law 116-223
116th Congress

                                 An Act

 To require the Secretary of Commerce, acting through the Administrator 
 of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, to establish a 
  constituent-driven program to provide a digital information platform 
 capable of efficiently integrating coastal data with decision-support 
    tools, training, and best practices and to support collection of 
  priority coastal geospatial data to inform and improve local, State, 
 regional, and Federal capacities to manage the coastal region, and for 
          other purposes. <<NOTE: Dec. 18, 2020 -  [S. 1069]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: Digital Coast 
SECTION 1. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1451 note.>>  SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Digital Coast Act''.
SEC. 2. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1467 note.>>  FINDINGS.

    Congress makes the following findings:
            (1) The Digital Coast is a model approach for effective 
        Federal partnerships with State and local government, 
        nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector.
            (2) Access to current, accurate, uniform, and standards-
        based geospatial information, tools, and training to 
        characterize the United States coastal region is critical for 
        public safety and for the environment, infrastructure, and 
        economy of the United States.
            (3) More than half of all people of the United States 
        (153,000,000) currently live on or near a coast and an 
        additional 12,000,000 are expected in the next decade.
            (4) Coastal counties in the United States average 300 
        persons per square mile, compared with the national average of 
            (5) On a typical day, more than 1,540 permits for 
        construction of single-family homes are issued in coastal 
        counties, combined with other commercial, retail, and 
        institutional construction to support this population.
            (6) Over half of the economic productivity of the United 
        States is located within coastal regions.
            (7) Highly accurate, high-resolution remote sensing and 
        other geospatial data play an increasingly important role in 
        decision making and management of the coastal zone and economy, 
        including for--
                    (A) flood and coastal storm surge prediction;
                    (B) hazard risk and vulnerability assessment;
                    (C) emergency response and recovery planning;
                    (D) community resilience to longer range coastal 
                    (E) local planning and permitting;

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                    (F) habitat and ecosystem health assessments; and
                    (G) landscape change detection.
SEC. 3. <<NOTE: 16 USC 1467 note.>>  DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
            (1) Coastal region.--The term ``coastal region'' means the 
        area of United States waters extending inland from the shoreline 
        to include coastal watersheds and seaward to the territorial 
            (2) Coastal state.--The term ``coastal State'' has the 
        meaning given the term ``coastal state'' in section 304 of the 
        Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C. 1453).
            (3) Federal geographic data committee.--The term ``Federal 
        Geographic Data Committee'' means the interagency committee that 
        promotes the coordinated development, use, sharing, and 
        dissemination of geospatial data on a national basis.
            (4) Remote sensing and other geospatial.--The term ``remote 
        sensing and other geospatial'' means collecting, storing, 
        retrieving, or disseminating graphical or digital data depicting 
        natural or manmade physical features, phenomena, or boundaries 
        of the Earth and any information related thereto, including 
        surveys, maps, charts, satellite and airborne remote sensing 
        data, images, LiDAR, and services performed by professionals 
        such as surveyors, photogrammetrists, hydrographers, geodesists, 
        cartographers, and other such services.
            (5) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary 
        of Commerce, acting through the Administrator of the National 
        Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

    (a) Establishment.--
            (1) In general.--The Secretary shall establish a program for 
        the provision of an enabling platform that integrates geospatial 
        data, decision-support tools, training, and best practices to 
        address coastal management issues and needs. Under the program, 
        the Secretary shall strive to enhance resilient communities, 
        ecosystem values, and coastal economic growth and development by 
        helping communities address their issues, needs, and challenges 
        through cost-effective and participatory solutions.
            (2) Designation.--The program established under paragraph 
        (1) shall be known as the ``Digital Coast'' (in this section 
        referred to as the ``program'').

    (b) Program Requirements.--In carrying out the program, the 
Secretary shall ensure that the program provides data integration, tool 
development, training, documentation, dissemination, and archive by--
            (1) <<NOTE: Web posting.>>  making data and resulting 
        integrated products developed under this section readily 
        accessible via the Digital Coast internet website of the 
        National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the 
        GeoPlatform.gov and data.gov internet websites, and such other 
        information distribution technologies as the Secretary considers 
            (2) developing decision-support tools that use and display 
        resulting integrated data and provide training on use of such 

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            (3) documenting such data to Federal Geographic Data 
        Committee standards; and
            (4) archiving all raw data acquired under this Act at the 
        appropriate National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data 
        center or such other Federal data center as the Secretary 
        considers appropriate.

    (c) <<NOTE: Consultations.>>  Coordination.--The Secretary shall 
coordinate the activities carried out under the program to optimize data 
collection, sharing, and integration, and to minimize duplication by--
            (1) consulting with coastal managers and decision makers 
        concerning coastal issues, and sharing information and best 
        practices, as the Secretary considers appropriate, with--
                    (A) coastal States;
                    (B) local governments; and
                    (C) representatives of academia, the private sector, 
                and nongovernmental organizations;
            (2) consulting with other Federal agencies, including 
        interagency committees, on relevant Federal activities, 
        including activities carried out under the Ocean and Coastal 
        Mapping Integration Act (33 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), the Coastal 
        Zone Management Act of 1972 (16 U.S.C. 1451 et seq.), the 
        Integrated Coastal and Ocean Observation System Act of 2009 (33 
        U.S.C. 3601 et seq.), and the Hydrographic Services Improvement 
        Act of 1998 (33 U.S.C. 892 et seq.);
            (3) participating, pursuant to section 216 of the E-
        Government Act of 2002 (Public Law 107-347; 44 U.S.C. 3501 
        note), in the establishment of such standards and common 
        protocols as the Secretary considers necessary to assure the 
        interoperability of remote sensing and other geospatial data 
        with all users of such information within--
                    (A) the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
                    (B) other Federal agencies;
                    (C) State and local government; and
                    (D) the private sector;
            (4) coordinating with, seeking assistance and cooperation 
        of, and providing liaison to the Federal Geographic Data 
        Committee pursuant to Office of Management and Budget Circular 
        A-16 and Executive Order 12906 of April 11, 1994 (59 Fed. Reg. 
        17671), as amended by Executive Order 13286 of February 28, 2003 
        (68 Fed. Reg. 10619); and
            (5) developing and maintaining a best practices document 
        that sets out the best practices used by the Secretary in 
        carrying out the program and providing such document to the 
        United States Geological Survey, the Corps of Engineers, and 
        other relevant Federal agencies.

    (d) Filling Needs and Gaps.--In carrying out the program, the 
Secretary shall--
            (1) maximize the use of remote sensing and other geospatial 
        data collection activities conducted for other purposes and 
        under other authorities;
            (2) focus on filling data needs and gaps for coastal 
        management issues, including with respect to areas that, as of 
        the date of the enactment of this Act, were underserved by 
        coastal data and the areas of the Arctic that are under the 
        jurisdiction of the United States;

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            (3) pursuant to the Ocean and Coastal Mapping Integration 
        Act (33 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), support continue improvement in 
        existing efforts to coordinate the acquisition and integration 
        of key data sets needed for coastal management and other 
        purposes, including--
                    (A) coastal elevation data;
                    (B) land use and land cover data;
                    (C) socioeconomic and human use data;
                    (D) critical infrastructure data;
                    (E) structures data;
                    (F) living resources and habitat data;
                    (G) cadastral data; and
                    (H) aerial imagery; and
            (4) integrate the priority supporting data set forth under 
        paragraph (3) with other available data for the benefit of the 
        broadest measure of coastal resource management constituents and 

    (e) Financial Agreements and Contracts.--
            (1) In general.--In carrying out the program, the 
                    (A) may enter into financial agreements to carry out 
                the program, including--
                          (i) support to non-Federal entities that 
                      participate in implementing the program; and
                          (ii) grants, cooperative agreements, 
                      interagency agreements, contracts, or any other 
                      agreement on a reimbursable or non-reimbursable 
                      basis, with other Federal, tribal, State, and 
                      local governmental and nongovernmental entities; 
                    (B) <<NOTE: Determination.>>  may, to the maximum 
                extent practicable, enter into such contracts with 
                private sector entities for such products and services 
                as the Secretary determines may be necessary to collect, 
                process, and provide remote sensing and other geospatial 
                data and products for purposes of the program.
            (2) Fees.--
                    (A) Assessment and collection.--The Secretary may, 
                to the extent provided in advance in appropriations 
                Acts, assess and collect fees for the conduct of any 
                training, workshop, or conference that advances the 
                purposes of the program.
                    (B) Amounts.--The amount of a fee under this 
                paragraph may not exceed the sum of costs incurred, or 
                expected to be incurred, by the Secretary as a direct 
                result of the conduct of the training, workshop, or 
                conference, including for subsistence expenses 
                incidental to the training, workshop, or conference, as 
                    (C) Use of fees.--Amounts collected by the Secretary 
                in the form of fees under this paragraph shall be 
                available to the extent and in such amounts as are 
                provided in advance in appropriations Acts for--
                          (i) the costs incurred for conducting an 
                      activity described in subparagraph (A); or
                          (ii) the expenses described in subparagraph 
            (3) Survey and mapping.--Contracts entered into under 
        paragraph (1)(B) shall be considered ``surveying and mapping'' 
        services as such term is used in and as such contracts are

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        awarded by the Secretary in accordance with the selection 
        procedures in chapter 11 of title 40, United States Code.

    (f) Ocean Economy.--The Secretary may establish publically available 
tools that track ocean and Great Lakes economy data for each coastal 
    (g) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to be 
appropriated to the Secretary $4,000,000 for each fiscal year 2021 
through 2025 to carry out the program.

    Approved December 18, 2020.


SENATE REPORTS: No. 116-234 (Comm. on Commerce, Science, and 
            Sept. 30, considered and passed Senate.
            Nov. 16, considered and passed House, amended.
            Dec. 2, Senate concurred in House amendment.