This bill amends the Estuary Restoration Act of 2000 to authorize a nongovernmental organization allowed to serve as a non-federal interest for an estuary habitat restoration project to provide lands owned and managed by a legally constituted public body (including a federally recognized Indian tribe) for habitat or fish and wildlife conservation if such body agrees to: (1) operate and maintain, or to allow the nongovernmental organization to operate and maintain, the project; and (2) retain the land in public ownership for uses compatible with the project.
The Secretary of the Army may not carry out such a project unless a non-federal interest has agreed to provide for operation, maintenance, and monitoring of the project (current law requires that such interest has agreed to provide for long-term maintenance and monitoring of the project).
The bill authorizes a nongovernmental organization serving as the non-federal interest for a project to pay the operation, maintenance, and replacement and rehabilitation costs of the project and the non-federal share of the costs of construction of the project.
The Secretary shall: (1) issue guidelines for implementing such projects, making every effort to streamline implementation requirements and reduce overhead costs, including by maximizing consistency with the requirements of restoration programs administered by other federal agencies; and (2) develop and revise the guidelines through a public process.
HR 4607 is sponsored by Representative Jared Huffman.