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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Agricultural Wetlands: Current Programs and Legislative Proposals

Agricultural Wetlands: Current Programs and Legislative Proposals

Date: January 4, 1996
Creator: Zinn, Jeffrey A & Copeland, Claudia
Description: Amending Federal laws to protect wetlands, especially agricultural wetlands, is a contentious issue for the 104th Congress. Critics contend that current programs are excessive in their reach and unfairly restrict private landowners. Supporters counter that these programs are critical if the Nation is to achieve the stated goal of no-net-loss of wetlands. The two major statutes under which agricultural wetlands are protected are swampbuster, enacted in the Agriculture, Food, Trade, and Conservation Act of 1985, and section 404, enacted in the 1972 Clean Water Act. This report describes both programs, emphasizing how they relate to each other. It explains how each program works, especially on agricultural wetlands, and the likely effect of proposed revisions to swampbuster. Also, it briefly considers other legislative proposals that would amend the section 404 program, which, if enacted, would further affect how agricultural wetlands are protected.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Great Lakes Water Quality: Current Issues

Great Lakes Water Quality: Current Issues

Date: May 17, 1996
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Auburn Dam on the American River: Fact Sheet

Auburn Dam on the American River: Fact Sheet

Date: June 6, 1996
Creator: Cody, Betsy A; Hughes, H. Steven & Price, Shelley
Description: For more than 30 years, Congress has debated constructing a dam on the American River near Auburn, California. The Army Corps of Engineers recently identified three alternatives for flood control, with the Division office's preferred plan calling for construction of a 508-foot-high detention dam. Currently, two bills address the issue: H.R. 3270 supports construction of the dam, while H.R. 2951 opposes construction of any structure on the North Fork of the American River.
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Safe Drinking Water Act Reauthorization Issues

Safe Drinking Water Act Reauthorization Issues

Date: June 20, 1996
Creator: Tiemann, Mary
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Safe Drinking Water Act: Implementation and Reauthorization

Safe Drinking Water Act: Implementation and Reauthorization

Date: December 3, 1996
Creator: Tiemann, Mary
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Safe Drinking Water Act: State Revolving Fund Program

Safe Drinking Water Act: State Revolving Fund Program

Date: June 4, 1997
Creator: Tiemann, Mary
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Clean Water Issues in the 105th Congress

Clean Water Issues in the 105th Congress

Date: August 21, 1997
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: For the 105th Congress, reauthorization of the Clean Water Act may be a priority in the second session. The Act was last amended in 1987 and authorizations expired on Sept. 30, 1990. Clean water was a priority for the last two Congresses, but no legislation was enacted. In the 104th Congress, the House passed a comprehensive reauthorization bill, but during House debate and subsequently, controversies arose over whether and how the Act should be made more flexible and less burdensome on regulated entities. Issues likely to be of interest again in the 105th Congress include funding, overall flexibility and regulatory reform of water quality programs, and measures to address polluted runoff from farms and city streets.
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Clean Water Act and TMDLs

Clean Water Act and TMDLs

Date: September 11, 1997
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: Section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. For those waters, states must establish a total maximum daily load (TMDL) of pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained. Implementation of this provision has been dormant until recently, when states and EPA were prodded by numerous lawsuits. The TMDL issue has become controversial, in part because of requirements and costs now facing states to implement a 25-year-old provision of the law. Congressional activity to reauthorize the Act, a possibility in the 2nd Session of the 105th Congress, could include TMDL issues, but the direction for any such action is unclear at this time.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Wetland Mitigation Banking: Status and Prospects

Wetland Mitigation Banking: Status and Prospects

Date: September 12, 1997
Creator: Zinn, Jeffrey A
Description: Wetland protection is controversial because the federal government regulates activities on private lands and because the natural values at some of these regulated sites are being debated. This controversy pits property owners and development interests against environmentalists and others who seek to protect the remaining wetlands. Mitigation banking, which allows a person to degrade a wetland at one site if a wetland at another site is improved, has been identified as a potential answer to this shrill and seemingly intractable debate.
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Stormwater Permits: Status of EPA's Regulatory Program

Stormwater Permits: Status of EPA's Regulatory Program

Date: June 10, 1998
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department