(a) Office of Management Conference of the Long Island Sound Study
The Administrator shall continue the Management Conference of the Long Island Sound Study (hereinafter referred to as the “Conference”) as established pursuant to section 1330 of this title, and shall establish an office (hereinafter referred to as the “Office”) to be located on or near Long Island Sound.
(b) Administration and staffing of Office
Terms Used In 33 USC 1269
- Deposition: An oral statement made before an officer authorized by law to administer oaths. Such statements are often taken to examine potential witnesses, to obtain discovery, or to be used later in trial.
- pollution: means the man-made or man-induced alteration of the chemical, physical, biological, and radiological integrity of water. See 33 USC 1362
- Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
- State: means a State, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands. See 33 USC 1362
The Office shall be headed by a Director, who shall be detailed by the Administrator, following consultation with the Administrators of EPA regions I and II, from among the employees of the Agency who are in civil service. The Administrator shall delegate to the Director such authority and detail such additional staff as may be necessary to carry out the duties of the Director under this section.
(c) Duties of Office
The Office shall assist the conference study in carrying out its goals. Specifically, the Office shall–
(1) assist and support the implementation of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan for Long Island Sound developed pursuant to section 1330 of this title, including efforts to establish, within the process for granting watershed general permits, a system for promoting innovative methodologies and technologies that are cost-effective and consistent with the goals of the Plan;
(2) conduct or commission studies deemed necessary for strengthened implementation of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan including, but not limited to–
(A) population growth and the adequacy of wastewater treatment facilities;
(B) the use of biological methods for nutrient removal in sewage treatment plants;
(C) contaminated sediments, and dredging activities;
(D) nonpoint source pollution abatement and land use activities in the Long Island Sound watershed;
(E) wetland protection and restoration;
(F) atmospheric deposition of acidic and other pollutants into Long Island Sound;
(G) water quality requirements to sustain fish, shellfish, and wildlife populations, and the use of indicator species to assess environmental quality;
(H) State water quality programs, for their adequacy pursuant to implementation of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan;
(I) options for long-term financing of wastewater treatment projects and water pollution control programs;
(J) environmental vulnerabilities of the Long Island Sound watershed, including–
(i) the identification and assessment of such vulnerabilities in the watershed;
(ii) the development and implementation of adaptation strategies to reduce such vulnerabilities; and
(iii) the identification and assessment of the effects of sea level rise on water quality, habitat, and infrastructure; and 1
(3) coordinate the grant, research and planning programs authorized under this section;
(4) develop and implement strategies to increase public education and awareness with respect to the ecological health and water quality conditions of Long Island Sound;
(5) provide administrative and technical support to the conference study;
(6) collect and make available to the public (including on a publicly accessible website) publications, and other forms of information the conference study determines to be appropriate, relating to the environmental quality of Long Island Sound;
(7) monitor the progress made toward meeting the identified goals, actions, and schedules of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan, including through the implementation and support of a monitoring system for the ecological health and water quality conditions of Long Island Sound; and
(8) convene conferences and meetings for legislators from State governments and political subdivisions thereof for the purpose of making recommendations for coordinating legislative efforts to facilitate the environmental restoration of Long Island Sound and the implementation of the Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan.
(1) The Administrator is authorized to make grants for projects and studies which will help implement the Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan. Special emphasis shall be given to implementation, research and planning, enforcement, and citizen involvement and education.
(2) State, interstate, and regional water pollution control agencies, and other public or nonprofit private agencies, institutions, and organizations held to be eligible for grants pursuant to this subsection.
(3) Citizen involvement and citizen education grants under this subsection shall not exceed 95 per centum of the costs of such work. All other grants under this subsection shall not exceed 60 percent of the research, studies, or work. All grants shall be made on the condition that the non-Federal share of such costs are provided from non-Federal sources.
(e) Assistance to distressed communities
(1) Eligible communities
For the purposes of this subsection, a distressed community is any community that meets affordability criteria established by the State in which the community is located, if such criteria are developed after public review and comment.
In making assistance available under this section for the upgrading of wastewater treatment facilities, the Administrator may give priority to a distressed community.
(1) In general
Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of this Act, and biennially thereafter, the Director of the Office, in consultation with the Governor of each Long Island Sound State, shall submit to Congress a report that–
(A) summarizes and assesses the progress made by the Office and the Long Island Sound States in implementing the Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan, including an assessment of the progress made toward meeting the performance goals and milestones contained in the Plan;
(B) assesses the key ecological attributes that reflect the health of the ecosystem of the Long Island Sound watershed;
(C) describes any substantive modifications to the Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan made during the 2-year period preceding the date of submission of the report;
(D) provides specific recommendations to improve progress in restoring and protecting the Long Island Sound watershed, including, as appropriate, proposed modifications to the Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan;
(E) identifies priority actions for implementation of the Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan for the 2-year period following the date of submission of the report; and
(F) describes the means by which Federal funding and actions will be coordinated with the actions of the Long Island Sound States and other entities.
(2) Public availability
The Administrator shall make the report described in paragraph (1) available to the public, including on a publicly accessible website.
(g) Federal entities
The Administrator shall coordinate the actions of all Federal departments and agencies that affect water quality in the Long Island Sound watershed in order to improve the water quality and living resources of the watershed.
In carrying out this section, the Administrator, acting through the Director of the Office, may–
(A) enter into interagency agreements; and
(B) make intergovernmental personnel appointments.
(4) Consistency with comprehensive conservation and management plan
To the maximum extent practicable, the head of each Federal department or agency that owns or occupies real property, or carries out activities, within the Long Island Sound watershed shall ensure that the property and all activities carried out by the department or agency are consistent with the Long Island Sound Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (including any related subsequent agreements and plans).
(h) Authorization of appropriations
There is authorized to be appropriated to the Administrator to carry out this section $40,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2019 through 2023.