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Monday, March 21, 2011

H.R. 1 Full-Year FY2011 Continuing Resolution: Overview of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Provisions

Robert Esworthy
Specialist in Environmental Policy

As of the date of this report, none of the 12 FY2011 regular appropriations bills had been finalized. On February 19, 2011, the House passed H.R. 1, funding 11 of the 12 regular FY2011 appropriations bills in the form of a full-year continuing resolution (CR) within Division B (Division A separately provided FY2011 appropriations for the Department of Defense, which is the 12th bill). Title VII of Division B in H.R. 1, as passed by the House, included specified funding levels for certain Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) accounts. Title VII of Division B, as well as Division D of the House-passed bill, combined contained more than 20 provisions restricting or prohibiting the use of appropriated funds to implement various regulatory activities under the EPA’s jurisdiction. On March 9, 2011, the Senate did not pass the House version of H.R. 1 and did not agree to a subsequent Senate substitute amendment (S.Amdt. 149) containing different funding levels and generally omitting the EPA provisions included in the House-passed H.R. 1. As Congress is currently considering additional interim and full-year options for FY2011 appropriations, funding levels and related environmental regulatory issues particularly regarding EPA have remained a prominent topic in the ongoing debate.

A number of recent and pending regulatory actions were the focus of considerable debate during the House floor consideration of H.R. 1. These EPA actions cut across the various environmental pollution control statutes’ programs and initiatives, such as those that address greenhouse gas emissions, hazardous air pollutants (including mercury), mountaintop mining regulation, management of coal ash, particulate matter emissions, and water quality management including geographical ecosystems (notably Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes).

This report provides a summary of funding levels for EPA accounts and program activities specified in H.R. 1, as passed by the House and as proposed in the Senate amendment. The report also briefly highlights a number of these provisions regarding EPA program activities as presented in H.R. 1, as passed by the House. Only those provisions that are clearly identifiable by specific language or references contained in the bill are included. Nearly all of these EPA provisions were omitted from the Senate amendment (S.Amdt. 149). The information presented throughout this report is primarily an extraction of the bill language for purposes of reference and is not intended to provide a comprehensive analysis of all provisions in H.R. 1 that may directly or indirectly affect EPA programs.

To date, four temporary Continuing Resolutions (CRs) have been enacted that have sequentially extended funding from October 1, 2010, through March 18, 2011. H.J.Res. 48, passed by the House on March 16, 2011, would continue funding at reduced levels through April 8, 2011. Congress continues to deliberate on options for completing the FY2011 appropriations bills.

Date of Report: March 17, 2011
Number of Pages: 16
Order Number: R41698
Price: $29.95

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