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114th Congress   }                                      {       Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session     }                                      {      114-327

======================================================================



 
               RED RIVER PRIVATE PROPERTY PROTECTION ACT

                                _______
                                

November 4, 2015.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

Mr. Bishop of Utah, from the Committee on Natural Resources, submitted 
                             the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 2130]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 2130) to provide legal certainty to property 
owners along the Red River in Texas, and for other purposes, 
having considered the same, report favorably thereon with an 
amendment and recommend that the bill as amended do pass.
    The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Red River Private Property Protection 
Act''.

SEC. 2. DISCLAIMER AND OUTDATED SURVEYS.

  (a) In General.--The Secretary disclaims any right, title, and 
interest to the land located south of the South Bank boundary line in 
the affected area.
  (b) Clarification of Prior Surveys.--Surveys conducted by the Bureau 
of Land Management before the date of the enactment of this Act shall 
have no force or effect in determining the South Bank boundary line.

SEC. 3. SURVEY OF SOUTH BANK BOUNDARY LINE.

  (a) Survey Required.--To identify the South Bank boundary line in the 
affected area, the Secretary shall commission a survey. The survey 
shall--
          (1) adhere to the gradient boundary survey method;
          (2) span the entire length of the affected area;
          (3) be conducted by Licensed State Land Surveyors chosen by 
        the Texas General Land Office, in consultation with the 
        Oklahoma Commissioners of the Land Office;
          (4) be completed not later than 2 years after the date of the 
        enactment of this Act; and
          (5) not be submitted to the Bureau of Land Management for 
        approval.
  (b) Approval of the Survey.--After the survey is completed, the 
Secretary shall submit the survey to be approved by the Texas General 
Land Office, in consultation with the Oklahoma Commissioners of the 
Land Office.
  (c) Surveys of Individual Parcels.--
          (1) In general.--Parcels surveyed as required by this section 
        shall be surveyed and approved on an individual basis by the 
        Texas General Land Office, in consultation with the Oklahoma 
        Commissioners of the Land Office.
          (2) Surveys of individual parcels not submitted to the bureau 
        of land management.--Surveys of individual parcels shall not be 
        submitted to the Bureau of Land Management for approval.
  (d) Notice.--
          (1) Notification to the secretary.--Not later than 30 days 
        after a survey for a parcel is approved by the Texas General 
        Land Office under subsection (c), such office shall provide to 
        the Secretary the following:
                  (A) Notice of the approval of such survey.
                  (B) A copy of such survey and field notes relating to 
                such parcel.
          (2) Notification to adjacent landowners.--Not later than 30 
        days after the date on which the Secretary receives 
        notification relating to a parcel under paragraph (1), the 
        Secretary shall provide to landowners adjacent to such parcel 
        the following:
                  (A) Notice of the approval of such survey.
                  (B) A copy of such survey and field notes relating to 
                such parcel.
                  (C) Notice that the landowner may file an appeal 
                under section 4.
                  (D) Notice that the landowner may apply for a patent 
                under section 5.
                  (E) Any additional information considered appropriate 
                by the Secretary.

SEC. 4. APPEAL.

  Not later than 1 year after the date on which a landowner receives 
notification under section 3(d)(2), a landowner who claims to hold 
right, title, or interest in the affected area may appeal the 
determination of the survey to an administrative law judge of the 
Department of the Interior.

SEC. 5. RED RIVER SURFACE RIGHTS.

  (a) Notification of Application Period for Patents.--
          (1) In general.--On the date that is 18 months after the date 
        on which the Secretary receives notification relating to a 
        parcel under section 3(d)(1), the Secretary shall determine 
        whether such parcel is subject to appeal.
          (2) Parcel not subject to appeal.--Not later than 30 days 
        after the date on which the Secretary determines a parcel is 
        not subject to appeal, the Secretary shall--
                  (A) notify landowners adjacent to such parcel that 
                the Secretary shall accept applications for patents for 
                that parcel under subsection (b) for a period of 210 
                days; and
                  (B) begin accepting applications for patents for that 
                parcel under subsection (b) for a period of 210 days.
          (3) Parcel subject to appeal.--If the Secretary determines a 
        parcel is subject to appeal, the Secretary shall, not less than 
        once every 6 months, check the status of the appeals relating 
        to such parcel, until the Secretary determines such parcel is 
        not subject to appeal.
  (b) Patents for Lands in the Affected Area.--If the Secretary 
receives an application for a patent for a parcel of identified Federal 
lands during the period for applications for such parcel under 
subsection (a)(2)(B) and determines that the parcel has been held in 
good faith and in peaceful adverse possession by an applicant, or the 
ancestors or grantors of such applicant, for more than 20 years under 
claim (including through a State land grant or deed or color of title), 
the Secretary may issue a patent for the surface rights to such parcel 
to the applicant, on the payment of $1.25 per acre, if the patent 
includes the following conditions:
          (1) All minerals contained in the parcel are reserved to the 
        United States and subject to sale or disposal by the United 
        States under applicable leasing and mineral land laws.
          (2) Permittees, lessees, or grantees of the United States 
        have the right to enter the parcel for the purpose of 
        prospecting for and mining deposits.
  (c) Pending Requests for Patents.--The Secretary shall not offer a 
parcel of identified Federal land for purchase under section 6 if a 
patent request for that parcel is pending under this section.

SEC. 6. RIGHT OF REFUSAL AND COMPETITIVE SALE.

  (a) Right of Refusal.--
          (1) Offers to purchase.--After the expiration of the period 
        for applications under section 5(a)(2)(B), the Secretary shall 
        offer for purchase for a period of 60 days for each right of 
        refusal--
                  (A) the surface rights to the remaining identified 
                Federal lands located north of the vegetation line of 
                the South Bank to--
                          (i) the adjacent owner of land located in 
                        Oklahoma to the north with the first right of 
                        refusal;
                          (ii) if applicable, the adjacent owner of 
                        land located in Texas to the south with the 
                        second right of refusal;
                          (iii) if applicable, the adjacent owner of 
                        land located to the east with the third right 
                        of refusal; and
                          (iv) if applicable, the adjacent owner of 
                        land located to the west with the fourth right 
                        of refusal; and
                  (B) the surface rights to the remaining identified 
                Federal lands located south of the vegetation line of 
                the South Bank to--
                          (i) the adjacent owner of land located in 
                        Texas to the south with the first right of 
                        refusal;
                          (ii) if applicable, the adjacent owner of 
                        land located in Oklahoma to the north with the 
                        second right of refusal;
                          (iii) if applicable, the adjacent owner of 
                        land located to the east with the third right 
                        of refusal; and
                          (iv) if applicable, the adjacent owner of 
                        land located to the west with the fourth right 
                        of refusal.
          (2) Remaining identified federal lands defined.--In this 
        subsection, the term ``remaining identified Federal lands'' 
        means any parcel of identified Federal lands--
                  (A) not subject to appeal under section 4;
                  (B) not determined by an administrative law judge of 
                the Department of the Interior or a Federal court to be 
                the property of an adjacent landowner; and
                  (C) not patented or subject to a pending request for 
                a patent under section 5.
  (b) Disposal by Competitive Sale.--If a parcel offered under 
subsection (a) is not purchased, the Secretary shall offer the parcel 
for disposal by competitive sale for not less than fair market value as 
determined by an appraisal conducted in accordance with nationally 
recognized appraisal standards, including the Uniform Appraisal 
Standards for Federal Land Acquisitions and the Uniform Standards of 
Professional Appraisal Practice.
  (c) Conditions of Sale.--The sale of a parcel under this section 
shall be subject to--
          (1) the condition that all minerals contained in the parcel 
        are reserved to the United States and subject to sale or 
        disposal by the United States under applicable leasing and 
        mineral land laws;
          (2) the condition that permittees, lessees, or grantees of 
        the United States have the right to enter the parcel for the 
        purpose of prospecting for and mining deposits; and
          (3) valid existing State, tribal, and local rights.
  (d) Report.--Not later than 5 years after the date on which the 
survey is approved, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on 
Natural Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate a list of the parcels of 
identified Federal lands that have not been sold under subsection (b) 
and a description of the reasons such parcels were not sold.

SEC. 7. RESOURCE MANAGEMENT PLAN.

  The Secretary may not treat a parcel of identified Federal lands as 
Federal land for the purposes of a resource management plan if the 
treatment of such parcel does not comply with the provisions of this 
Act.

SEC. 8. CONSTRUCTION.

  (a) Lands Located North of the South Bank Boundary Line.--Nothing in 
this Act shall be construed to modify the interest of Texas or Oklahoma 
or sovereignty rights of any federally recognized Indian tribe over 
lands located to the north of the South Bank boundary line as 
established by the survey.
  (b) Patents Under the Color of Title Act.--Nothing in this Act shall 
be construed to modify land patented under the Act of December 22, 1928 
(Public Law 70-645; 45 Stat. 1069; 43 U.S.C. 1068; commonly known as 
the Color of Title Act), before the date of the enactment of this Act.
  (c) Red River Boundary Compact.--Nothing in this Act shall be 
construed to modify the Red River Boundary Compact as enacted by the 
States of Texas and Oklahoma and consented to by the United States 
Congress by Public Law 106-288 (114 Stat. 919).

SEC. 9. DEFINITIONS.

  In this Act:
          (1) Affected area.--The term ``affected area'' means lands 
        along the approximately 116-mile stretch of the Red River from 
        its confluence with the North Fork of the Red River on the west 
        to the 98th meridian on the east between the States of Texas 
        and Oklahoma.
          (2) Gradient boundary survey method.--The term ``gradient 
        boundary survey method'' means the measurement technique used 
        to locate the South Bank boundary line under the methodology 
        established in Oklahoma v. Texas, 261 U.S. 340 (1923) 
        (recognizing that the boundary line between the States of Texas 
        and Oklahoma along the Red River is subject to change due to 
        erosion and accretion).
          (3) Identified federal lands.--The term ``identified Federal 
        lands'' means the lands in the affected area from the South 
        Bank boundary line north to the medial line of the Red River as 
        identified pursuant to this Act.
          (4) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        the Interior, acting through the Director of the Bureau of Land 
        Management.
          (5) South bank.--The term ``South Bank'' means the water-
        washed and relatively permanent elevation or acclivity, 
        commonly called a cut bank, along the southerly or right side 
        of the Red River which separates its bed from the adjacent 
        upland, whether valley or hill, and usually serves to confine 
        the waters within the bed and to preserve the course of the 
        river (as specified in the fifth paragraph of Oklahoma v. 
        Texas, 261 U.S. 340 (1923)).
          (6) South bank boundary line.--The term ``South Bank boundary 
        line'' means the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma identified 
        through the gradient boundary survey method (as specified in 
        the sixth and seventh paragraphs of Oklahoma v. Texas, 261 U.S. 
        340 (1923)).
          (7) Survey.--The term ``survey'' means the survey required by 
        section 3(a).
          (8) Vegetation line.--The term ``vegetation line'' means the 
        visually identifiable continuous line of vegetation that is 
        adjacent to the portion of the riverbed kept practically bare 
        of vegetation by the natural flow of the river and is 
        continuous with the vegetation beyond the riverbed.

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 2130 is to provide legal certainty to 
property owners along the Red River in Texas.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    Confusion and dispute over the Texas-Oklahoma border has 
been ongoing for over 200 years. Under the Louisiana Purchase 
in 1803, the United States bought from France land that 
included the riverbed of the Red River. Subsequent treaties 
between the United States and Spain, Mexico, and the Republic 
of Texas confirmed that the boundary between the Texas and 
Oklahoma was the south bank of the River. In 1867, the U.S. 
signed a treaty with the Kiowa, Comanche, and Apache Tribes 
that designated a reservation north of the ``middle of the main 
channel'' of the Red River between the 98th Meridian and the 
North Fork. Congress later disposed of the reservation and 
created a grazing reserve that was ultimately disposed of in 
1906. However, since the southern boundary of the reservation 
and grazing reserve was defined as the ``middle of the main 
channel,'' the land between the medial line of the River and 
the south bank remained as federal land.
    After oil was discovered in an area around the Red River, 
Oklahoma brought suit against Texas in 1919 to determine the 
common boundary. In a 1923 decision and decree, the U.S. 
Supreme Court adopted the gradient boundary survey method for 
determining the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma. Oklahoma 
v. Texas, 261 U.S. 340. According to this decision, the 
gradient boundary is on and along the south bank at the average 
or mean level of the waters when they reach and wash the bank 
without overflowing it. In unique areas where there is no well-
defined cut bank, but only a gradual incline from the sand bed 
of the River to the upland, the boundary is a line conforming 
to the mean level of the water when at other places in that 
vicinity they reach and wash the cut bank without overflowing 
it.
    In 2000, House Joint Resolution 72, which codified the Red 
River Boundary Compact agreed to by Texas and Oklahoma, was 
signed into law. The purpose of the compact was to establish a 
visible boundary between the two states that would resolve 
jurisdictional and sovereignty disputes issues. The compact set 
the political boundary as the vegetation line on the south bank 
of the Red River. While the compact does not affect land 
ownership, it is widely accepted that the vegetative line and 
the gradient boundary can be relatively the same or at least 
within feet of each other.
    Accretion, erosion, and avulsion have gradually altered the 
course and location of the Red River in the area subject to 
this bill. Accretion can be generally defined as the deposit of 
soil along the bank or bed of a river and erosion is the 
removal of soil from the banks or bed of a river. Legally, a 
landowner is allowed to keep the accretions attached to his or 
her land but loses title to eroded lands. An avulsion is the 
sudden change in a channel of a boundary river that can be 
caused through natural events or as a result from human 
activity. When this sudden change occurs, the boundary remains 
where it was before the avulsion event. The decree rendered in 
the 1923 U.S. Supreme Court decision explicitly addresses 
accretion, erosion, and avulsion and recognized that the 
boundary between Texas and Oklahoma would continually move with 
the River through accretion and erosion but not through 
avulsion.
    The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is currently updating 
its Oklahoma, Kansas, and Texas Resource Management Plan (RMP), 
which covers the 116-mile stretch of the Red River subject to 
this bill. BLM estimates this revision will be finalized in 
January 2018. BLM originally stated there are an estimated 
90,000 acres of land along this stretch of the River that may 
be considered public domain and managed as federal land. BLM 
has since reduced this estimate to at most 30,000 acres, of 
which only 6,402 acres have been actually surveyed.
    These statements and the pending RMP revision have caused 
great concern among local landowners and others that the 
federal government is claiming to own land which was previously 
deeded to individual citizens. Most landowners along the River 
are now unsure if the land that they have held title to and 
have paid taxes on, in many cases for generations, will remain 
in their families or be subject to federal ownership and 
management. Further, the entire 116-mile stretch of the Red 
River at question has never been surveyed by BLM, and the 
method used to survey small stretches of the River strays 
widely from the accepted gradient boundary survey method 
established by the 1923 U.S. Supreme Court decision and decree. 
BLM's surveys have been contested by landowners, county 
officials, the Texas General Land Office (GLO), and others.
    This bill attempts to make clear who actually holds title 
to the land at question. To do so, H.R. 2130 requires BLM to 
disclaim any right, title, and interest to certain lands along 
a 116-mile stretch of the River located south of the south bank 
boundary line of the River. BLM is also required to commission 
a survey of the entire stretch of contested land along the 
River using the gradient boundary survey method developed and 
backed by the U.S. Supreme Court. The survey must also be 
conducted by Licensed State Land Surveyors and approved by the 
Texas GLO. Landowners are allowed to appeal further public 
domain claims by BLM through an Administrative Law Judge. BLM 
is prevented from treating parcels in the affected area as 
federal land under any RMP until the survey has been completed 
and approved and the parcels are no longer subject to further 
appeal. BLM is required to sell off the surface rights of the 
remaining federally-owned land at fair market value after the 
proper boundary line is located and settled and submit to 
Congress a list of federal lands that have not been sold and 
the reasons why. The bill also explicitly states that the 
interest of the states and the sovereignty rights of the 
federally recognized Indian tribes north of the Texas state 
boundary line will not be affected.
    During Committee consideration of the bill, Chairman Rob 
Bishop offered an Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute 
(ANS), which was approved by voice vote. The ANS makes 
technical and conforming changes, clarifies aspects of the 
survey and appeals procedure, requires the Texas GLO to approve 
the survey in consultation with the Commissioners of the Land 
Office in Oklahoma, ensures that the bill does not modify the 
Red River Boundary Compact, and allows land parcels to be 
surveyed and approved on an individual basis. The ANS also 
allows landowners to file for a modified Color-of-Title Act 
land patent request and sets forth procedures on the first and 
subsequent rights of refusal for adjacent Oklahoma and Texas 
landowners.
    A previous version of this bill, H.R. 4979, the Red River 
Private Property Protection Act, also authored by Congressman 
Mac Thornberry, was considered by the Natural Resources 
Committee during the 113th Congress. The Subcommittee on Public 
Lands and Environmental Regulation held a hearing on the bill, 
and it was favorably reported to the House of Representatives 
by voice vote (House Report 113-700).

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 2130 was introduced on April 30, 2015, by Congressman 
Mac Thornberry (R-TX). The bill was referred to the Committee 
on Natural Resources, and within the Committee to the 
Subcommittee on Federal Lands. On September 9, 2015, the 
Natural Resources Committee met to consider the bill. The 
Subcommittee was discharged by unanimous consent. Congressman 
Rob Bishop (R-UT) offered an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute. The amendment was adopted by voice vote. On 
September 10, 2015, the bill, as amended, was ordered favorably 
reported to the House of Representatives by bipartisan roll 
call vote of 21 to 11, as follows:


            COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS

    Regarding clause 2(b)(1) of rule X and clause 3(c)(1) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee on Natural Resources' oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XIII

    1. Cost of Legislation. Clause 3(d)(1) of rule XIII of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives requires an estimate and 
a comparison by the Committee of the costs which would be 
incurred in carrying out this bill. However, clause 3(d)(2)(B) 
of that Rule provides that this requirement does not apply when 
the Committee has included in its report a timely submitted 
cost estimate of the bill prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974. Under clause 3(c)(3) of rule 
XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and section 
403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee has 
received the following cost estimate for this bill from the 
Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

H.R. 2130--Red River Private Property Protection Act

    Summary: H.R. 2130 would establish a process under which 
the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) would dispose of roughly 
30,000 acres of federal land along the border between Texas and 
Oklahoma. As part of that process, the bill would require BLM 
to commission a survey of a 116-mile segment of the Red River 
and about 160 tracts of land adjacent to the river.
    CBO estimates that enacting the bill would increase net 
offsetting receipts, which are treated as reductions in direct 
spending, by $5 million over the 2018-2025 period; therefore, 
pay-as-you-go procedures apply. Enacting H.R. 2130 would not 
affect revenues. In addition, based on information provided by 
BLM and the Texas General Land Office, CBO estimates that 
implementing the bill would cost $2 million over the 2016-2020 
period, assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts.
    CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 2130 would not increase 
net direct spending or on-budget deficits by more than $5 
billion in any of the four consecutive 10-year periods 
beginning in 2026.
    H.R. 2130 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) 
and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary effect of H.R. 2130 is shown in the following table. 
The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 300 
(natural resources and environment).

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                           By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                             -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                 2016       2017       2018       2019       2020       2021       2022       2023       2024       2025    2016-2020  2016-2025
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                   CHANGES IN DIRECT SPENDING
 
Discounted Land Sales
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................          0          0          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          1          2
    Estimated Outlays.......................................          0          0          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          1          2
Fair Market Value Land Sales
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................          0          0         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -3         -7
    Estimated Outlays.......................................          0          0         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -3         -7
Total Changes
    Estimated Budget Authority..............................          0          0         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -2         -5
    Estimated Outlays.......................................          0          0         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -1         -2         -5
 
                                                                          CHANGES IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION
 
    Estimated Authorization Level...........................          1          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          2          2
    Estimated Outlays.......................................          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          *          2          2
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Note: Components may not sum to totals because of rounding; * = less than $500,000.

    Basis of estimate: For this estimate, CBO assumes that the 
legislation will be enacted in 2016 and that the necessary 
amounts will be appropriated for each fiscal year.

Direct spending

    CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 2130 would increase net 
offsetting receipts by $5 million over the 2018-2025 period. 
That estimate includes two components: provisions authorizing 
BLM to convey certain federal lands to private citizens for 
$1.25 an acre would reduce offsetting receipts by roughly $2 
million over that period; provisions requiring the BLM to sell 
federal lands for fair market value would increase offsetting 
receipts by $7 million over that period.
    Red River Boundary. A series of treaties in the early 1800s 
established the south bank of the Red River as the southern 
border between the United States and what is now the state of 
Texas. In 1867, the federal government established the Kiowa-
Comanche-Apache Reservation in what is now the state of 
Oklahoma and set the southern border of the reservation as the 
center of the Red River. Any land located between the center of 
the river and the southern bank remained federal land.
    Over time, the path of the river shifted, exposing lands 
that were once regularly submerged. For decades, parcels of 
land, primarily south of the river's new southern bank, were 
sold to individuals in Oklahoma and Texas. Some individuals who 
obtained deeds to the affected parcels built structures and 
paid taxes on them. However, in the early 1980s, a U.S. 
District Court reestablished that private property in Oklahoma 
extended to the center of the river as it flowed in the 1800s 
while private property in Texas extended to the southern bank 
of the river as it flowed at that time. As a result, some of 
the land that was occupied by private landowners was awarded to 
other landowners across the river while other land was 
reclaimed as federal land under the jurisdiction of BLM.
    Discounted Land Sales. Under the Color of Title Act, 
individuals can acquire clear title to up to 160 acres of 
federal land if they hold title to the land, were unaware that 
title to the land was originally vested in the federal 
government, and meet certain other conditions. The act requires 
that individuals pay fair market value for acquired lands; 
however, the estimated value may be reduced to account for 
several factors, including improvements made on the land and 
property taxes paid. The minimum cost to acquire lands under 
the Color of Title Act is $1.25 per acre.
    Under current law, CBO estimates that 20,000 acres of 
federal land along the Red River are occupied by private 
landowners and owners of about 50 percent of that land (10,000 
acres) meets the conditions necessary to be acquired under the 
Color of Title Act. We also estimate that owners of about 80 
percent of the land eligible to be acquired (8,000 acres) will 
complete their claims. Finally, we estimate, based on the 
amounts paid to acquire lands under that act in recent years, 
that landowners will pay about $200 an acre (roughly 15 percent 
of the estimated fair market value), on average, to acquire the 
affected lands. As a result, CBO estimates that, BLM will 
collect offsetting receipts totaling roughly $2 million over 
the 2018-2025 period from individuals acquiring land under the 
Color of Title Act.
    Section 5 would require BLM to convey federal lands to 
private landowners who seek to acquire title and meet 
conditions similar to those required under the Color of Title 
Act. The bill would require landowners to pay $1.25 an acre 
(less than one-tenth of one percent of the estimated fair 
market value) to acquire the affected lands and, unlike the 
Color of Title Act, would not cap the number of acres a 
landowner could acquire at that price. CBO expects that 
eliminating the cap would make roughly 75 percent of the 
privately-occupied federal lands (15,000 acres) eligible for 
purchase at $1.25 per acre. We also expect that the lower price 
would increase the amount of land purchased to 95 percent of 
that amount (14,250 acres). Therefore, CBO estimates that, 
under section 5, BLM would collect offsetting receipts totaling 
roughly $20,000 over the 2018-2025 period. On net, CB0 
estimates that enacting the bill would reduce the amount of 
offsetting receipts BLM would collect from selling land at 
discounted prices by $2 million over the 2018-2025 period.
    Fair Market Value Land Sales. Under the Federal Land Policy 
and Management Act (FLPMA), BLM has the authority to dispose of 
federal lands in accordance with an approved land use plan. The 
agency is currently drafting a new plan that will determine how 
federal lands along the Red River will be administered. Based 
on information provided by BLM, CBO expects that the agency 
will probably identify all 30,000 acres of federal land along 
the river for disposal when its plan is completed in 2018.
    Under current law, CBO estimates that BLM could sell about 
22,000 acres of federal land along the Red River (the land 
remaining after conveyances under the Color of Title Act) at 
fair market value beginning in 2018. We also estimate, based on 
the value of similar lands in the area, that the fair market 
value of the affected lands would average about $1,500 an acre. 
Thus, CBO estimates that BLM could collect offsetting receipts 
from land sales along the Red River totaling up to $33 million 
over the 2018-2025 period. However, because we are uncertain 
about the actions BLM will take under the pending resource 
management plan, CBO estimates, after considering a range of 
possible outcomes, that the agency will collect receipts 
totaling about $17 million over that period.
    Section 6 would require BLM to sell at fair market value 
all lands along the Red River that are not sold at a discount 
under section 5. CBO estimates that, under the bill, the agency 
would sell roughly 16,000 acres of federal land at an average 
price of $1,500 an acre. Thus, CBO estimates that, under the 
bill, BLM would generate offsetting receipts from the sale of 
federal land along the river totaling $24 million over the 
2018-2025 period. On net, CBO estimates that conducting the 
land sales required under section 6 would increase offsetting 
receipts by $7 million over that period.

Spending subject to appropriation

    H.R. 2130 would require BLM to commission a survey of a 
116-mile segment of the Red River and about 160 tracts of land 
adjacent to the river. Based on information provided by the 
Texas General Land Office, the entity that would oversee the 
survey, CBO estimates that conducting the survey would cost 
roughly $1 million over the 2016-2017 period. In addition, CBO 
estimates, based on the cost of carrying out similar 
activities, that BLM would spend about $2 million over the 
2018-2025 period to administer the conveyance of the affected 
lands. Because CBO expects that, under current law, BLM may 
carry out many of the tasks required under H.R. 2130, we 
estimate that implementing the bill would increase 
discretionary spending, relative to current law, by roughly $2 
million over the 2016-2020 period, assuming appropriation of 
the necessary amounts.
    Pay-As-You-Go Considerations: The Statutory Pay-As-You-Go 
Act of 2010 establishes budget-reporting and enforcement 
procedures for legislation affecting direct spending or 
revenues. The net changes in outlays and revenues that are 
subject to those pay-as-you-go procedures are shown in the 
following table.

       CBO ESTIMATE OF PAY-AS-YOU-GO EFFECTS FOR H.R. 2130, AS ORDERED REPORTED BY THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON NATURAL RESOURCES ON SEPTEMBER 10, 2015
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                              By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                           -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                             2015    2016    2017    2018    2019    2020    2021    2022    2023    2024    2025   2015-2020  2015-2025
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                       NET INCREASE OR DECREASE (-) IN THE DEFICIT
 
Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Impact............       0       0       0      -1      -1      -1      -1      -1      -1      -1      -1        -2         -5
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Increase in Long Term Direct Spending and Deficits: CBO 
estimates that enacting the legislation would not increase net 
direct spending or on-budget deficits by more than $5 billion 
in any of the four consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 
2026.
    Intergovernmental and Private-Sector Impact: H.R. 2130 
contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as 
defined in UMRA and would impose no costs on state, local, or 
tribal governments.
    Estimate prepared by: FederalCosts: Jeff LaFave; Impact on 
State, Local, and Tribal Governments: Jon Sperl; Impact on the 
Private Sector: Amy Petz.
    Estimate approved by: Theresa Gullo, Assistant Director for 
Budget Analysis.
    2. Section 308(a) of Congressional Budget Act. As required 
by clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives and section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget 
Act of 1974, this bill does not contain any new credit 
authority, or an increase or decrease in revenues or tax 
expenditures. According to the Congressional Budget Office, 
implementation of this bill would cost $2 million over the 
2016-2010 time period, subject to appropriation, while 
increasing net offsetting receipts by $5 million over the 2018-
2025 time period.
    3. General Performance Goals and Objectives. As required by 
clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general performance goal or 
objective of this bill is to provide legal certainty to 
property owners along the Red River in Texas.

                           EARMARK STATEMENT

    This bill does not contain any Congressional earmarks, 
limited tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits as defined 
under clause 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule XXI of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives.

                    COMPLIANCE WITH PUBLIC LAW 104-4

    This bill contains no unfunded mandates.

                       COMPLIANCE WITH H. RES. 5

    Directed Rule Making. The Chairman does not believe that 
this bill directs any executive branch official to conduct any 
specific rule-making proceedings.
    Duplication of Existing Programs. This bill does not 
establish or reauthorize a program of the federal government 
known to be duplicative of another program. Such program was 
not included in any report from the Government Accountability 
Office to Congress pursuant to section 21 of Public Law 111-139 
or identified in the most recent Catalog of Federal Domestic 
Assistance published pursuant to the Federal Program 
Information Act (Public Law 95-220, as amended by Public Law 
98-169) as relating to other programs.

                PREEMPTION OF STATE, LOCAL OR TRIBAL LAW

    This bill is not intended to preempt any State, local or 
tribal law.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    If enacted, this bill would make no changes in existing 
law.

                            DISSENTING VIEWS

    Federal interest in land along the Red River between Texas 
and Oklahoma dates back to the Louisiana Purchase. Fast forward 
more than two hundred years, several treaties and compacts 
later, and there is still confusion about the amount of land 
owned by the Federal government and the location of the 
boundary between Texas and Oklahoma.
    In several cases during the 1920s, the Supreme Court of the 
United States ruled that the boundary between Texas and 
Oklahoma along the Red River is determined by the gradient 
boundary method. Using this method in the years since, the 
Bureau of Land Management (BLM) estimates that the Federal 
government retains interest in approximately 30,000 acres along 
the 116 mile stretch of the Red River, 23,000 of which are 
overlaid by private deeds. On July 26, 2013, BLM issued a 
Notice of Intent to begin work on a revision to the Oklahoma, 
Kansas, and Texas Resource Management Plan (RMP), which 
includes a comprehensive survey of the area and verification of 
ownership. There are many overlapping claims, missing and 
unreliable records, and even competing claims from both Texas 
and Oklahoma over the same pieces of property. Completion of 
the public planning process and survey will clear up all of the 
uncertainty.
    H.R. 2130 would halt that process and nullify all previous 
BLM surveys, transferring authority to survey the area to the 
Texas General Land Office. After nearly 100 years of 
uncontested surveys, the sponsors of H.R. 2130 claim that BLM 
has misinterpreted the Supreme Court's definition of gradient 
and argue that the Texas border should be closer to the 
waterline of the river. Transferring BLM's survey authority to 
the Texas General Land Office would permit the State of Texas 
to conduct a survey that moves its border northward toward the 
water, effectively eliminating a large portion of the estimated 
federal land holdings.
    This is unfair to the American taxpayers, who deserve fair 
compensation for their assets. If Texas wants to challenge 
BLM's survey methods and interpretation of the law, it should 
do so in the courts, not Congress.
    Additionally, this jeopardizes a long standing agreement 
between the Federal government and the Kiowa, Apache, and 
Comanche tribes. These tribes receive 62.5 percent of any 
royalty generated for oil and gas development along this 
section of the Red River. If part of this land no longer 
belongs to the federal government, this important source of 
revenue relied on by the tribes could also vanish into thin 
air.
    With the long, complicated history and various ownership 
claims along the Red River, BLM must be allowed to complete its 
planning process and land survey. The survey is neither a land 
grab nor an example of government overreach; it is simply a 
federal agency trying to resolve a very complex situation. 
Restricting the survey authority of the BLM, the Federal 
government's surveyor of record, sets a dangerous precedent. We 
oppose H.R. 2130 because it blindly erases an asset owned by 
all Americans.

                                   Raul M. Grijalva,
                                           Ranking Member, Committee on 
                                               Natural Resources.
                                   Niki Tsongas,
                                           Ranking Member, Subcommittee 
                                               on Federal Lands.
                                   Jared Huffman,
                                           Ranking Member, Subcommittee 
                                               on Water, Power and 
                                               Oceans.
                                   Alan Lowenthal,
                                           Ranking Member, Subcommittee 
                                               on Energy and Mineral 
                                               Resources.
                                   Grace Napolitano,
                                           Member of Congress.

                                  [all]