TITLE IV
THE HERGER-FEINSTEIN QUINCY LIBRARY
GROUP FOREST RECOVERY ACT

SEC. 401. PILOT PROJECT FOR PLUMAS, LASSEN, AND TAHOE NATIONAL FORESTS TO IMPLEMENT QUINCY LIBRARY GROUP PROPOSAL.

(a) DEFINITION.--

For purpose of this section, the term "Quincy Library Group Community Stability Proposal" means the agreement by a coalition of representatives of fisheries, timber, environmental, county government, citizen groups, and local communities that formed in northern California to develop a resource management program that promotes ecologic and economic health for certain Federal lands and communities in the Sierra Nevada area. Such proposal includes the map entitled "QUINCY LIBRARY GROUP Community Stability Proposal", dated October 12, 1993, and prepared by VESTRA Resources of Redding, California.

(b) PILOT PROJECT REQUIRED.--

  1. PILOT PROJECT AND PURPOSE.--

    The Secretary of Agriculture (in this section referred to as the "Secretary"), acting through the Forest Service and after completion of an environmental impact statement (a record of decision for which shall be adopted within 300 days), shall conduct a pilot project on the Federal lands described in paragraph (2) to implement and demonstrate the effectiveness of the resource management activities described in subsection (d) and the other requirements of this section, as recommended in the Quincy Library Group-Community Stability Proposal.

  2. PILOT PROJECT AREA.--

    The Secretary shall conduct the pilot project on the Federal lands within Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and the Sierraville Ranger District of Tahoe National Forest in the State of California designated as "Available for Group Selection" on the map entitled "QUINCY LIBRARY GROUP Community Stability Proposal", dated October 12, 1993 (in this section referred to as the "pilot project area"). Such map shall be on file and available for inspection in the appropriate offices of the Forest Service.

(c) EXCLUSION OF CERTAIN LANDS, RIPARIAN PROTECTION AND COMPLIANCE.--

  1. EXCLUSION.--

    All spotted owl habitat areas and protected activity centers located within the pilot project area designated under subsection (b)(2) will be deferred from resource management activities required under subsection (d) and timber harvesting during the term of the pilot project.

  2. RIPARIAN PROTECTION.--

  3. COMPLIANCE.--

    All Resource management activities required by subsection (d) shall be implemented to the extent consistent with applicable Federal law and the standards and guidelines for the conservation of the California spotted owl as set forth in the California Spotted Owl Sierran Provence Interim Guidelines or the subsequently issued guidelines, whichever are in effect.

  4. ROADLESS AREA PROTECTION.--

    The Regional Forester for Region 5 shall direct that any resource management activity required by subsection (d) (1) and (2), all road building, all timber harvesting activities, and any riparian management under subsection (d)(4) that utilizes road construction or timber harvesting shall not be conducted on Federal lands within the Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and the Sierraville Ranger District of the Tahoe National Forest that are designated as either "Off Base" or "Deferred" on the map referred to in subsection (a). Such direction shall be effective during the term of the pilot project.

(d) RESOURCE MANAGEMENT ACTIVITIES.--

During the term of the pilot project, the Secretary shall implement and carry out the following resource management activities on an acreage basis on the Federal lands included within the pilot project area designated under subsection (b)(2):

  1. FUELBREAK CONSTRUCTION.>--

    Construction of a strategic system of defensible fuel profile zones, including shaded fuelbreaks, utilizing thinning, individual tree selection, and other methods of vegetation management consistent with the Quincy Library Group-Community Stability Proposal, on not less than 40,000, but not more than 60,000, acres per year.

  2. GROUP SELECTION AND INDIVIDUAL TREE SELECTION.--

    Utilization of group selection and individual tree selection uneven-aged forest management prescriptions described in the Quincy Library Group-Community Stability Proposal to achieve a desired future condition of all-age, multistory, fire resilient forests as follows:

  3. TOTAL ACREAGE.--

    The total acreage on which resource management activities are implemented under this subsection shall not exceed 70,000 acres each year.

  4. RIPARIAN MANAGEMENT.--

    A program of riparian management, including wide protection zones and riparian restoration projects, consistent with riparian protection guidelines in subsection (c)(2)(B).

(e) COST-EFFECTIVENESS.--

In conducting the pilot project, Secretary shall use the most cost-effective means available, as determined by the Secretary, to implement resource management activities described in subsection (d).

(f) FUNDING.--

(1) SOURCE OF FUNDS.--In conducting the pilot project, the Secretary shall use, subject to the relevant reprogramming guidelines of the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations--
(A) those funds specifically provided to the Forest Service by the Secretary to implement resource management activities according to the Quincy Library Group-Community Stability Proposal ; and

(B) year-end excess funds that are allocated for the administration and management of Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and the Sierraville Ranger District of Tahoe National Forest.

(2) PROHIBITION ON USE OF CERTAIN FUNDS.--The Secretary may not conduct the pilot project using funds appropriated for any other unit of the National Forest System.

(3) FLEXIBILITY.--Subject to normal reprogramming guidelines, during the term of the pilot project, the forest supervisors of Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and Tahoe National Forest may allocate and use all accounts that contain year-end excess funds and all available excess funds for the administration and management of Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and the Sierraville Ranger District of Tahoe National Forest to perform the resource management activities described in subsection (d).

(4) RESTRICTION.--The Secretary or the forest supervisors, as the case may be, shall not utilize authority provided under paragraphs (1)(B) and (3) if, in their judgment, doing so will limit other nontimber related multiple use activities for which such funds were available.

(5) OVERHEAD.--The Secretary shall seek to ensure that of amounts available to carry out this section---

(A) not more than 12 percent is used or allocated for general administration or other overhead; and

(B) at least 88 percent is used to implement and carry out activities required by this section.

(6) AUTHORIZED SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDS.--There are authorized to be appropriated to implement and carry out the pilot project such sums as are necessary.

(7) BASELINE FUNDS.--Amounts available for resource management activities authorized under subsection (d) shall at a minimum include existing baseline funding levels.

(g) TERM OF PILOT PROJECT.--

The Secretary shall conduct the pilot project until the earlier of: (1) the date on which the Secretary completes amendment or revision of the land and resource management plans directed under and in compliance with subsection (i) for the Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and Tahoe National Forest; or (2) five years after the date of the commencement of the pilot project.

(h) CONSULTATION.--

(1) The statement required by subsection (b)(1) shall be prepared in consultation with interested members of the public, including the Quincy Library Group.
 

(2) CONTRACTING.--The Forest Service, subject to the availability of appropriations, may carry out any (or all) of the requirements of this section using private contracts.

(i) CORRESPONDING FOREST PLAN AMENDMENTS.--

Within 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Regional Forester for Region 5 shall initiate the process to amend or revise the land and resource management plans for Plumas National Forest, Lassen National Forest, and Tahoe National Forest. The process shall include preparation of at least one alternative that--

(1) incorporates the pilot project and area designations made by subsection (b), the resource management activities described in subsection (d), and other aspects of the Quincy Library Group-Community Stability Proposal; and

(2) makes other changes warranted by the analyses conducted in compliance with section 102 (2) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4332 (2)), section 6 of the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Planning Act of 1974 (16 U.S.C. 1604), and other applicable laws.

(j) STATUS REPORTS.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--Not later than February 28 of each year during the term of the pilot project, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report on the status of the pilot project. The report shall include at least the following:
(A) A complete accounting of the use of funds made available under subsection (f) (1)(A) until such funds are fully expended.

(B) A complete accounting of the use of funds and accounts made available under subsection (f)(1) for the previous fiscal year, including a schedule of the amounts drawn from each account used to perform resource management activities described in subsection (d).

(C) A description of total acres treated for each of the resource management activities required under subsection (d), forest health improvements, fire risk reductions, water yield increases, and other natural resources-related benefits achieved by the implementation of the resource management activities described in subsection (d).

(D) A description of the economic benefits to local communities achieved by the implementation of the pilot project.

(E) A comparison of the revenues generated by, and costs incurred in, the implementation of the resource management activities described in subsection (d) on the Federal lands included in the pilot project area with the revenues and costs during each of the fiscal years 1992 through 1997 for timber management of such lands before their inclusion in the pilot project.

(F) A proposed schedule for the resource management activities to be undertaken in the pilot project area during the 1-year period beginning on the date of submittal of the report.

(G) A description of any adverse environmental impacts from the pilot project.

(2) LIMITATION ON EXPENDITURES.--The amount of Federal funds expended on each annual report under this subsection shall not exceed $125,000.

(k) FINAL REPORT.--

(1) IN GENERAL.--The Secretary shall establish an independent scientific panel to review and report on whether, and to what extent, implementation of the pilot project under this section achieved the goals stated in the Quincy Library Group-Community Stability Proposal, including improved ecological health and community stability. The membership of the panel shall reflect expertise in diverse disciplines in order to adequately address all of those goals.

(2) PREPARATION.--The panel shall initiate such review no sooner than 18 months after the first day of the term of the pilot project under subsection (g). The panel shall prepare the report in consultation with interested members of the public, including the Quincy Library Group. The report shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

(A) A description of any adverse environmental impacts resulting from implementation of the pilot project.

(B) An assessment of watershed monitoring data on lands treated pursuant to this section. Such assessment shall address the following issues on a priority basis: timing of water releases; water quality changes; and water yield changes over the short- and long-term in the pilot project area.

(3) SUBMISSION TO THE CONGRESS.--The panel shall submit the final report to the Congress as soon as practicable, but in no case later than 18 months after completion of the pilot project.

(4) LIMITATION ON EXPENDITURES.--The amount of Federal funds expended for the report under this subsection, other than for watershed monitoring, shall not exceed $350,000. The amount of Federal funds expended for watershed monitoring under this subsection shall not exceed $175,000 for each fiscal year in which the report is prepared.

(l) RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER LAWS.--

Nothing in this section exempts the pilot project from any Federal environmental law.

(m) LOANS FOR DEMONSTRATION PROJECTS FOR WOOD WASTE OR LOW-QUALITY WOOD BYPRODUCTS.--

(1) EVALUATION OF LOAN ADVISABILITY.-- The Alternative Agricultural Research and Commercialization Corporation established under section 1658 of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (7 U.S.C. 5902) (in this section referred to as the "Corporation") shall evaluate the advisability of making commercialization assistance loans under section 1661 of such Act (7 U.S.C. 5905) to support a minimum of 2 demonstration projects for the development and demonstration of commercial application of technology to convert wood waste or low-quality wood byproducts into usable, higher value products.

(2) LOCATION OF DEMONSTRATION PROJECTS.--If the Corporation determines to make loans under this subsection to support the development and demonstration of commercial application of technology to convert wood waste or low-quality wood by-products into usable , higher value products, the Corporation shall consider making one loan with regard to a demonstration project to be conducted in the pilot project area and one loan with regard to a demonstration project to be conducted in southeast Alaska.

(3) ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS.--To be eligible for a loan under this subsection, a demonstration project shall be required to satisfy the eligibility requirements imposed by the Corporation under section 1661 of the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (7 U.S.C. 5905).

SEC. 402. SHORT TITLE. Section 401 of this title may be cited as the "Herger-Feinstein Quincy Library Group Forest Recovery Act".

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