20 USC § 5509
National Environmental Education and Training Foundation
through Pub. L. 116-344, except Pub. Ls. 116-260 and 116-283

(a) Establishment and purposes

(1) Establishment

(A) There is hereby established the National Environmental Education and Training Foundation. The Foundation is established in order to extend the contribution of environmental education and training to meeting critical environmental protection needs, both in this country and internationally; to facilitate the cooperation, coordination, and contribution of public and private resources to create an environmentally advanced educational system; and to foster an open and effective partnership among Federal, State, and local government, business, industry, academic institutions, community based environmental groups, and international organizations.

(B) The Foundation is a charitable and nonprofit corporation whose income is exempt from tax, and donations to which are tax deductible to the same extent as those organizations listed pursuant to section 501(c) of title 26. The Foundation is not an agency or establishment of the United States.

(2) Purposes
The purposes of the Foundation are—

(A) subject to the limitation contained in the final sentence of subsection (d) herein, to encourage, accept, leverage, and administer private gifts for the benefit of, or in connection with, the environmental education and training activities and services of the United States Environmental Protection Agency;

(B) to conduct such other environmental education activities as will further the development of an environmentally conscious and responsible public, a well-trained and environmentally literate workforce, and an environmentally advanced educational system;

(C) to participate with foreign entities and individuals in the conduct and coordination of activities that will further opportunities for environmental education and training to address environmental issues and problems involving the United States and Canada or Mexico.

(3) Programs
The Foundation will develop, support, and/or operate programs and projects to educate and train educational and environmental professionals, and to assist them in the development and delivery of environmental education and training programs and studies.

(b) Board of Directors

(1) Establishment and membership

(A) The Foundation shall have a governing Board of Directors (hereafter referred to in this section as "the Board"), which shall consist of 13 directors, each of whom shall be knowledgeable or experienced in the environment, education and/or training. The Board shall oversee the activities of the Foundation and shall assure that the activities of the Foundation are consistent with the environmental and education goals and policies of the Environmental Protection Agency and with the intents and purposes of this chapter. The membership of the Board, to the extent practicable, shall represent diverse points of view relating to environmental education and training.

(B) The Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency shall, pursuant to paragraph (2), appoint the Director of the Office of Environmental Education established pursuant to section 5502 of this title as an ex-officio member of the Board. Ex officio membership shall also be offered to other Federal agencies or departments with an interest and/or experience in environmental education and training.

(C) Appointment to the Board shall not constitute employment by, or the holding of an office of, the United States for the purposes of any Federal law.

(2) Appointment and terms

(A) Members of the Board shall be appointed by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

(B) Within 90 days of November 16, 1990, and as appropriate thereafter, the Administrator shall publish in the Federal Register an announcement of appointments of Directors of the Board. At the same time, the Administrator shall transmit a copy of such announcement to the Education and Labor Committee and the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the United States Senate. Such appointments shall become final and effective 90 days after publication in the Federal Register.

(C) The directors shall be appointed for terms of 4 years, except that the Administrator, in making the initial appointments to the Board, shall appoint 5 directors to a term of 2 years, 4 directors to a term of 3 years, and 4 directors to a term of 4 years. The Administrator shall appoint an individual to serve as a director in the event of a vacancy on the Board within 60 days of said vacancy in the manner in which the original appointment was made. No individual may serve more than 2 consecutive terms as a director.

(3) Chair
The Chair shall be elected by the Board from its members for a 2-year term.

(4) Quorum
A majority of the current membership of the Board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

(5) Meetings
The Board shall meet at the call of the Chair at least twice a year. If a Director misses three consecutive regularly scheduled meetings, that individual may be removed from the Board and that vacancy filled in accordance with this subsection.

(6) Reimbursement of expenses
Members of the Board shall serve without pay, but may be reimbursed for the actual and necessary traveling and subsistence expenses incurred by them in the performance of the duties of the Foundation.

(7) General powers

(A) The Board may complete the organization of the Foundation by—

(i) appointing officers and employees;

(ii) adopting a constitution and bylaws consistent with the purposes of the Foundation and the provisions of this section; and

(iii) undertaking such other acts as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this section.

(B) The following limitations apply with respect to the appointment of officers and employees of the Foundation:

(i) Officers and employees may not be appointed until the Foundation has sufficient funds to pay for their service. Officers and employees of the Foundation shall be appointed without regard to the provisions of title 5 governing appointments in the competitive service, and may be paid without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 or subchapter III of chapter 53 of title 5 relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that no individual so appointed may receive pay in excess of the annual rate of basic pay in effect for grade GS–18 of the General Schedule.

(ii) The first officer or employee appointed by the Board shall be the Executive Director of the Foundation who—

(I) shall serve, at the direction of the Board, as the Secretary of the Board and the Foundation's chief executive officer; and

(II) shall be experienced in matters relating to environmental education and training.

(c) Rights and obligations of Foundation

(1) In general
The Foundation—

(A) shall have perpetual succession;

(B) may conduct business throughout the several States, territories, and possessions of the United States and abroad;

(C) shall have its principal offices in the District of Columbia or in the greater metropolitan area; and

(D) shall at all times maintain a designated agent authorized to accept service of process for the Foundation.

The service of notice to, or service of notice upon, the agent required under paragraph (4), or mailed to the business address of such agent, shall be deemed as service upon or notice to the Foundation.

(2) Seal
The Foundation shall have an official seal selected by the Board which shall be judicially noticed.

(3) Powers
To carry out its purposes under subsection (a) of this section, the Foundation shall have, in addition to the powers otherwise given it under this section, the usual powers of a corporation acting as a trustee, including the power—

(A) to accept, receive, solicit, hold, administer, and use any gift, devise, or bequest, either absolutely or in trust, of real or personal property or any income therefrom or other interest therein;

(B) to acquire by purchase or exchange any real or personal property or interest therein;

(C) unless otherwise required by the instrument of transfer, to sell, donate, lease, invest, reinvest, retain, or otherwise dispose of any property or income therefrom;

(D) to sue, or to be sued, and complain or defend itself in any court of competent jurisdiction, except that the Directors of the Board shall not be personally liable, except for gross negligence;

(E) to enter into contracts or other arrangements with public agencies and private organizations and persons and to make such payments as may be necessary to carry out its functions; and

(F) to do any and all acts necessary and proper to carry out the purposes of the Foundation.

(d) Conditions on donations

(1) For the purposes of this section, a gift, devise, or bequest may be accepted by the Foundation even though it is encumbered, restricted, or subject to beneficial interests of private persons if any current future interest therein is for the benefit of the Foundation.

(2) No donation, gift, devise, bequest, property (either real or personal), voluntary services, or any other thing of value may be accepted by the Foundation if it—

(A) is contingent upon the transmission by the Foundation of materials or information prepared by the donor or a third party in such a fashion as to convey a particular point of view favorable to the economic interests of the donor or its constituents or associates; or

(B) in the judgment of the Board carries with it an explicit or implied requirement on the part of the Foundation to do a specific act or make general representations which are to the benefit of the donor and which are not consistent with the environmental and education goals and policies of the Environmental Protection Agency and with the intents and purposes of this chapter.

(3) No materials bearing "logos", letterhead or other means of identification associated with a donor or third party may be transmitted by the Foundation, for use in environmental education and training except as required pursuant to subsection (f).

(e) Administrative services and support
Subject to the requirements of this subsection, the Administrator may provide personnel, facilities, and other administrative services to the Foundation, including reimbursement of expenses under subsection (b)(6) of this section, not to exceed then current Federal Government per diem rates, for a period of up to 4 years from November 16, 1990, and may accept reimbursement therefor, to be deposited in the Treasury to the credit of the appropriations then current and chargeable for the costs of providing such services. With respect to personnel, the Administrator may provide no more than 1 full-time employee to serve the Foundation in a policy capacity, and may provide clerical and other support staff at a level equivalent to 2 full-time equivalent employees to the Foundation, for a period not to exceed 2 years from the date of initial assignment of any personnel for this purpose.

(f) Omitted

(g) Volunteer status
The Administrator may accept, without regard to the civil service classification laws, rules, or regulations, the services of the Foundation, the Board, and the officers and employees of the Board, without compensation from the Environmental Protection Agency, as volunteers in the performance of the functions authorized herein, in the manner provided for under this section.

(h) Audits and petition of Attorney General for equitable relief
For purposes of section 10101 of title 36, the Foundation shall be treated as a corporation in part B of subtitle II of title 36.

(i) United States release from liability
The United States shall not be liable for any debts, defaults, acts, or omissions of the Foundation nor shall the full faith and credit of the United States extend to any obligation of the Foundation.

(j) Amendment and repeal
The Congress expressly reserves the right to repeal or amend this section at any time.


Subsec. (f) of this section, which required the Foundation, as soon as practicable after the end of each fiscal year, to transmit to Congress a report of its proceedings and activities, including a full and complete statement of its receipts, expenditures, and investments, terminated, effective May 15, 2000, pursuant to section 3003 of Pub. L. 104–66, set out as a note under section 1113 of Title 31, Money and Finance. See, also, page 183 of House Document No. 103–7.

In subsec. (h), "section 10101 of title 36" substituted for "the Act entitled 'An Act for audit of accounts of private corporations established under Federal law', approved August 30, 1964 (Public Law 88–504; 36 U.S.C. 1101–1103)" and "a corporation in part B of subtitle II of title 36" substituted for "a private corporation established under Federal law" on authority of Pub. L. 105–225, §5(b), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1499, the first section of which enacted Title 36, Patriotic and National Observances, Ceremonies, and Organizations.

Change of Name

Committee on Energy and Commerce of House of Representatives treated as referring to Committee on Commerce of House of Representatives by section 1(a) of Pub. L. 104–14, set out as a note preceding section 21 of Title 2. Committee on Commerce of House of Representatives changed to Committee on Energy and Commerce of House of Representatives, and jurisdiction over matters relating to securities and exchanges and insurance generally transferred to Committee on Financial Services of House of Representatives by House Resolution No. 5, One Hundred Seventh Congress, Jan. 3, 2001.

References in Other Laws to GS–16, 17, or 18 Pay Rates

References in laws to the rates of pay for GS–16, 17, or 18, or to maximum rates of pay under the General Schedule, to be considered references to rates payable under specified sections of Title 5, Government Organization and Employees, see section 529 [title I, §101(c)(1)] of Pub. L. 101–509, set out in a note under section 5376 of Title 5.

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