S. 357, the Wildlife Disease Emergency Act of 2011

Cost Estimate
August 14, 2012

As ordered reported by the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works on July 25, 2012

S. 357 would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to declare wildlife disease emergencies and to spend certain appropriated funds to address the effects of those diseases. The bill also would authorize the Secretary to establish a committee to assist the Department of the Interior (DOI) in preparing federal agencies to respond to such diseases.

Based on information provided by DOI, CBO expects that the agency would apply the emergency designation established under the bill to newly discovered diseases rather than known diseases. Based on information regarding the historical costs of mitigating the effects of severe outbreaks of wildlife diseases, such as white nose syndrome (which affects bats), CBO estimates that implementing the legislation would cost $2 million a year over the 2012-2017 period, assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts. Enacting S. 357 would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.

S. 357 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.