Subject to the approval of the Secretary of the Interior (hereafter in this chapter referred to as the “Secretary”) under this section, one water resources research and technology institute, center, or equivalent agency (hereafter in this chapter referred to as the “institute”) may be established in each State (as used in this chapter, the term “State” includes the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Mariana Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia) at a college or university which was established in accordance with the Act approved July 2, 1862 (12 Stat. 503) [7 U.S.C. 301 et seq.], or at some other institution designated by act of the legislature of the State concerned. If there is more than one such college or university in a State established in accordance with such Act of July 2, 1862, the institute in such State shall, in the absence of a designation to the contrary by act of the legislature of the State, be established at the one such college or university designated by the Governor of the State. Two or more States may cooperate in the establishment of a single institute or regional institute, in which event the sums otherwise allocated to institutes in each of the cooperating States shall be paid to such single or regional institute.
From the sums appropriated pursuant to subsection (f) of this section, the Secretary shall make grants to each institute to be matched on a basis of no less than 2 non-Federal dollars for every 1 Federal dollar, such sums to be used only for the reimbursement of the direct cost expenditures incurred for the conduct of the water resources research program.
Prior to and as a condition of the receipt each fiscal year of funds appropriated under subsection (f) of this section, each institute shall submit to the Secretary for his approval a water research program that includes assurances, satisfactory to the Secretary, that such program was developed in close consultation and collaboration with the director of that State’s department of water resources or similar agency, other leading water resources officials within the State, and interested members of the public. The program described in the preceding sentence shall include plans to promote research, training, information dissemination, and other activities meeting the needs of the State and Nation, and shall encourage regional cooperation among institutes in research into areas of water management, development, and conservation that have a regional or national character.
The Secretary shall conduct a careful and detailed evaluation of each institute at least once every 3 years to determine that the quality and relevance of its water resources research and its effectiveness at producing measured results and applied water supply research as an institution for planning, conducting, and arranging for research warrants its continued support under this section. If, as a result of any such evaluation, the Secretary determines that an institute does not qualify for further support under this section, then no further grants to the institute may be made until the institute’s qualifications are reestablished to the satisfaction of the Secretary.
Nothing in this chapter shall preempt the rights and authorities of any State with respect to its water resources or management of those resources.