June 13, 2012
As ordered reported by the House Committee on Natural Resources on June 7, 2012
S. 997 would authorize the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Bureau of Reclamation, to extend the water contract between the United States and the East Bench Irrigation District for four years or until a new long-term contract is executed, whichever is earlier. Based on information from the Bureau of Reclamation, CBO estimates that enacting the legislation would have no impact on the federal budget. Enacting S. 997 would not affect revenues or direct spending; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.
The Bureau of Reclamation supplies irrigation water from the Clark Canyon Dam and Reservoir project to the East Bench Irrigation District under an interim contract negotiated in 2006 after the original contract expired. When confirmed by a Montana district court, the 2006 contract will become the long-term contract. Payments to the federal government under the 2006 contract are about $115,000 annually, including reimbursement for operations and maintenance costs. Enacting S. 997 would not affect those annual payments.
S. 997 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
On August 3, 2011, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for S. 997, a bill to authorize the Secretary of the Interior to extend a water contract between the United States and the East Bench Irrigation District, as ordered reported by the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on July 14, 2011. The two pieces of legislation and CBO’s cost estimates are the same.