This section may be cited as the “Travel Promotion Act of 2009”.
The Corporation for Travel Promotion is established as a nonprofit corporation. The Corporation shall not be an agency or establishment of the United States Government. The Corporation shall be subject to the provisions of the District of Columbia Nonprofit Corporation Act (D.C. Code, section 29–1001 et seq.), to the extent that such provisions are consistent with this subsection, and shall have the powers conferred upon a nonprofit corporation by that Act to carry out its purposes and activities.
The members of the initial board of directors shall serve as incorporators and shall take whatever actions are necessary to establish the Corporation under the District of Columbia Nonprofit Corporation Act (D.C. Code, section 29–301.01 et seq.).
Any vacancy in the board shall not affect its power, but shall be filled in the manner required by this subsection. Any member whose term has expired may serve until the member’s successor has taken office, or until the end of the calendar year in which the member’s term has expired, whichever is earlier. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration of the term for which that member’s predecessor was appointed shall be appointed for the remainder of the predecessor’s term. No member of the board shall be eligible to serve more than 2 consecutive full 3-year terms.
Members of the board shall annually elect one of the members to be Chairman and elect 1 or 2 of the members as Vice Chairman or Vice Chairmen.
Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, no member of the board may be considered to be a Federal employee of the United States by virtue of his or her service as a member of the board.
No member shall receive any compensation from the Federal government for serving on the Board. Each member of the Board shall be paid actual travel expenses and per diem in lieu of subsistence expenses when away from his or her usual place of residence, in accordance with section 5703 of title 5.
The Corporation shall have an executive director and such other officers as may be named and appointed by the board for terms and at rates of compensation fixed by the board. No individual other than a citizen of the United States may be an officer of the Corporation. The Corporation may hire and fix the compensation of such employees as may be necessary to carry out its purposes. No officer or employee of the Corporation may receive any salary or other compensation (except for compensation for services on boards of directors of other organizations that do not receive funds from the Corporation, on committees of such boards, and in similar activities for such organizations) from any sources other than the Corporation for services rendered during the period of his or her employment by the Corporation. Service by any officer on boards of directors of other organizations, on committees of such boards, and in similar activities for such organizations shall be subject to annual advance approval by the board and subject to the provisions of the Corporation’s Statement of Ethical Conduct. All officers and employees shall serve at the pleasure of the board.
The Corporation shall have no power to issue any shares of stock, or to declare or pay any dividends.
No part of the income or assets of the Corporation shall inure to the benefit of any director, officer, employee, or any other individual except as salary or reasonable compensation for services.
The Corporation may not contribute to or otherwise support any political party or candidate for elective public office.
Meetings of the board of directors of the Corporation, including any committee of the board, shall be open to the public. The board may, by majority vote, close any such meeting only for the time necessary to preserve the confidentiality of commercial or financial information that is privileged or confidential, to discuss personnel matters, or to discuss legal matters affecting the Corporation, including pending or potential litigation.
The Corporation shall establish as its fiscal year the 12-month period beginning on October 1.
The Corporation shall engage an independent accounting firm to conduct an annual financial audit of the Corporation’s operations and shall publish the results of the audit. The Comptroller General of the United States may review any audit of a financial statement conducted under this paragraph by an independent accounting firm and may audit the Corporation’s operations at the discretion of the Comptroller General. The Comptroller General and the Congress shall have full and complete access to the books and records of the Corporation.
The Board shall establish annual objectives for the Corporation for each fiscal year subject to approval by the Secretary of Commerce (after consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of State). The Corporation shall establish a marketing plan for each fiscal year not less than 60 days before the beginning of that year and provide a copy of the plan, and any revisions thereof, to the Secretary.
The board shall transmit a copy of the Corporation’s budget for the forthcoming fiscal year to the Secretary not less than 60 days before the beginning of each fiscal year, together with an explanation of any expenditure provided for by the budget in excess of $500,000 for the fiscal year. The Corporation shall make a copy of the budget and the explanation available to the public and shall provide public access to the budget and explanation on the Corporation’s website.
There is hereby established in the Treasury a fund which shall be known as the Travel Promotion Fund.
The Secretary of the Treasury shall make available to the Corporation such sums as may be necessary, but not to exceed $10,000,000, from amounts deposited in the general fund of the Treasury from fees under section 1187(h)(3)(B)(i)(I) of title 8 to cover the Corporation’s initial expenses and activities under this section. Transfers shall be made at least monthly, immediately following the collection of fees under section 1187(h)(3)(B)(i)(I) of title 8, on the basis of estimates by the Secretary, and proper adjustments shall be made in amounts subsequently transferred to the extent prior estimates were in excess or less than the amounts required to be transferred.
For each of fiscal years 2012 through 2020, from amounts deposited in the general fund of the Treasury during the preceding fiscal year from fees under section 1187(h)(3)(B)(i)(I) of title 8, the Secretary of the Treasury shall transfer not more than $100,000,000 to the Fund, which shall be made available to the Corporation, subject to paragraph (3) of this subsection, to carry out its functions under this section. Transfers shall be made at least quarterly on the basis of estimates by the Secretary, and proper adjustments shall be made in amounts subsequently transferred to the extent prior estimates were in excess or less than the amounts required to be transferred.
The Corporation may decline to accept any contribution in-kind that it determines to be inappropriate, not useful, or commercially worthless.
The Corporation may not obligate or expend funds in excess of the total amount received by the Corporation for a fiscal year from Federal and non-Federal sources.
The Corporation shall maintain an in-kind contributions policy.
The Corporation and the Secretary of Commerce (or their designees) shall meet on a biannual basis to review the procedures to determine the fair market value of goods and services received from non-Federal sources by the Corporation under subparagraph (B).
Amounts transferred to the Fund under paragraph (2)(B) shall remain available until expended.
Any amount received by the Corporation from non-Federal sources in each of the fiscal years 2011 through 2020 that cannot be used to meet the matching requirement under paragraph (3)(A) for the fiscal year in which amount was collected may be carried forward and treated as having been received in the succeeding fiscal year for purposes of meeting the matching requirement of paragraph (3)(A) in such succeeding fiscal year.
Not later than 60 days after the date on which the Corporation receives a report from the Government Accountability Office with recommendations for the Corporation, the Corporation shall submit a report to Congress that describes the actions taken by the Corporation in response to the recommendations in such report.