S 342

112th CONGRESS
1st Session

S. 342

To provide supplemental ex gratia compensation to the Republic of the Marshall Islands for impacts of the nuclear testing program of the United States, and for other purposes.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

February 14, 2011

Mr. BINGAMAN (for himself and Ms. MURKOWSKI) (by request) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources


A BILL

To provide supplemental ex gratia compensation to the Republic of the Marshall Islands for impacts of the nuclear testing program of the United States, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the `Republic of the Marshall Islands Supplemental Nuclear Compensation Act of 2011'.

SEC. 2. CONTINUED MONITORING ON RUNIT ISLAND.

    Section 103(f)(1) of the Compact of Free Association Amendments Act of 2003 (48 U.S.C. 1921b(f)(1)) is amended--

      (1) by striking `Notwithstanding' and inserting the following:

        `(A) IN GENERAL- Notwithstanding'; and

      (2) by adding at the end the following:

        `(B) CONTINUED MONITORING ON RUNIT ISLAND-

          `(i) CACTUS CRATER CONTAINMENT AND GROUNDWATER MONITORING- Effective beginning January 1, 2008, the Secretary of Energy shall, as a part of the Marshall Islands program conducted under subparagraph (A), periodically (but not less frequently than every 4 years) conduct--

            `(I) a visual study of the concrete exterior of the Cactus Crater containment structure on Runit Island; and

            `(II) a radiochemical analysis of the groundwater surrounding and in the Cactus Crater containment structure on Runit Island.

          `(ii) REPORT- The Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate, and the Committee on Natural Resources of the House of Representatives, a report that contains--

            `(I) a description of--

`(aa) the results of each visual survey conducted under clause (i)(I); and

`(bb) the results of the radiochemical analysis conducted under clause (i)(II); and

            `(II) a determination on whether the surveys and analyses indicate any significant change in the health risks to the people of Enewetak from the contaminants within the Cactus Crater containment structure.

          `(iii) FUNDING FOR GROUNDWATER MONITORING- The Secretary of the Interior shall make available to the Department of Energy, Marshall Islands Program, from funds available for the Technical Assistance Program of the Office of Insular Affairs, the amounts necessary to conduct the radiochemical analysis of groundwater under clause(i)(II).'.

SEC. 3. CLARIFICATION OF ELIGIBILITY UNDER ENERGY EMPLOYEES OCCUPATIONAL ILLNESS COMPENSATION PROGRAM ACT OF 2000.

    (a) Definitions for Program Administration- Section 3621 of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000 (42 U.S.C. 7384l) is amended by adding at the end the following:

      `(18) The terms `covered employee', `atomic weapons employee', and `Department of Energy contractor employee' (as defined in paragraphs (1), (3), and (11), respectively) include a citizen or national of the Republic of the Marshall Islands or the Federated States of Micronesia who is otherwise covered by that paragraph.'.

    (b) Definition of Covered DOE Contractor Employee- Section 3671(1) of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000 (42 U.S.C. 7385s(1)) is amended by inserting before the period at the end the following: `, including a citizen or national of the Republic of the Marshall Islands or the Federated States of Micronesia who is otherwise covered by this paragraph'.

    (c) Offset of Benefits With Respect to the Compact of Free Association- Subtitle C of the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000 (42 U.S.C. 7385 et seq.) is amended by inserting after section 3653 (42 U.S.C. 7385j-2) the following:

`SEC. 3654. OFFSET OF BENEFITS WITH RESPECT TO THE COMPACT OF FREE ASSOCIATION.

    `An individual who has been awarded compensation under this title, and who has also received compensation benefits under the Compact of Free Association between the United States and the Republic of the Marshall Islands (48 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.) (referred to in this section as the `Compact of Free Association'), by reason of the same illness, shall receive the compensation awarded under this title reduced by the amount of any compensation benefits received under the Compact of Free Association, other than medical benefits and benefits for vocational rehabilitation that the individual received by reason of the illness, after deducting the reasonable costs (as determined by the Secretary) of obtaining those benefits under the Compact of Free Association.'.

SEC. 4. SUPPLEMENTAL HEALTH CARE GRANT.

    Section 103(h) of the Compact of Free Association Amendments Act of 2003 (48 U.S.C. 1921b(h)) is amended by adding at the end the following:

      `(4) SUPPLEMENTAL HEALTH CARE GRANT-

        `(A) IN GENERAL- In addition to amounts provided under section 211 of the U.S.-RMI Compact (48 U.S.C. 1921 note), the Secretary of the Interior shall provide to the Republic of the Marshall Islands an annual supplemental health care grant in the amount made available under subparagraph (D)--

          `(i)(I) to provide enhanced primary health care, with an emphasis on providing regular screenings for radiogenic illnesses by upgrading existing services or by providing quarterly medical field team visits, as appropriate, in each of Enewetak, Bikini, Rongelap, Utrik, Ailuk, Mejit, Likiep, Wotho, Wotje, and Ujelang Atolls, which were affected by the nuclear testing program of the United States; and

          `(II) to enhance the capabilities of the Marshall Islands to provide secondary treatment for radiogenic illness; and

          `(ii) to construct and operate a whole-body counting facility on Utrik Atoll.

        `(B) CONDITIONS ON HEALTH CARE GRANTS- To ensure the effective use of grants funds under clause (i) of subparagraph (A), the Secretary of the Interior, after consultation with the Republic of the Marshall Islands, may establish additional conditions on the provision of grants under that clause.

        `(C) MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT- To meet the objectives of clause (ii) of subparagraph (A), the Secretary of the Interior, the Secretary of Energy, and the Government of the Republic of the Marshall Islands shall enter into a memorandum of agreement setting forth the terms, conditions, and respective responsibilities of the parties to the memorandum of agreement in carrying out that clause.

        `(D) FUNDING- As authorized by section 105(c), there is appropriated to the Secretary of the Interior, out of funds in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, to carry out this paragraph $4,500,000 for each of fiscal years 2009 through 2023, as adjusted for inflation in accordance with section 218 of the U.S.-RMI Compact, to remain available until expended.'.

SEC. 5. ASSESSMENT OF HEALTH CARE NEEDS OF THE MARSHALL ISLANDS.

    (a) In General- The Secretary of the Interior shall enter into an agreement with the National Academy of Sciences under which the National Academy of Sciences shall conduct an assessment of the health impacts of the United States nuclear testing program conducted in the Republic of the Marshall Islands on the residents of the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

    (b) Report- On completion of the assessment under subsection (a), the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to Congress, the Secretary, the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate, and the Committee on Natural Resources of the House of Representatives, a report on the results of the assessment.

    (c) Authorization of Appropriations- There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as are necessary to carry out this section.

END