H.R. 2189 would direct the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to continue implementing the agency’s Digital Coast Program. Under that program, NOAA makes geospatial data, decision-support tools, and best practices regarding the management of coastal areas available on a public website. In 2019, NOAA used $2 million of appropriated funds to carry out the program. The bill also would direct NOAA to focus additional data collection efforts on underserved coastal areas, such as in the Arctic.
Using information from NOAA, CBO expects that the resources necessary to implement the Digital Coast Program under H.R. 2189 would be higher than the resources necessary under current law because of the costs associated with transporting equipment to the Arctic and other underserved areas for additional data collection. Accounting for that, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 2189 would cost $15 million over the 2020-2024 period, assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts.
H.R. 2189 also would authorize NOAA to collect and spend fees, without further appropriation, for training, workshops and conferences related to the Digital Coast program. Any such collection and spending would be classified as direct spending. CBO estimates that the net effect of such collections and spending would be negligible because the spending would probably occur soon after any receipt.
The costs of the legislation, detailed in Table 1, fall within budget function 300 (natural resources and environment).