The act encourages the restoration of estuary habitat through more efficient project financing and enhanced coordination of Federal and non-Federal restoration programs. The Fish and Wildlife Service plays a role through the estuary habitat restoration partnership component. The law creates a Federal interagency council that includes the Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Secretary of the Army for Civil Works, the Secretary of Agriculture, the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Administrator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The Council is charged with developing a national estuary habitat restoration strategy and providing grants to entities to restore and protect estuary habitat to promote the strategy. The law authorizes $40 million in FY2001, $50 million in FY 2002 and 2003, $60 million in FY 2004 and $75 million in FY 2005 to support the grants program and requires no more than 65% of Federal funding for each project. The Secretary of the Army for Civil Works is the lead Federal agency where the authorization of appropriations originates, however, each Federal agency has an opportunity to chair the Council for a three-year term.
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