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115th Congress   }                                     {   Rept. 115-1060
                         HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session      }                                     {        Part 1

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



 
        PROTECTION AND TRANSPARENCY FOR ADJACENT LANDOWNERS ACT

                                _______
                                

December 3, 2018.--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. 6682]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 6682) to amend the Federal Land Policy and 
Management Act of 1976 to improve the transparency and 
oversight of land conveyances involving disposal or acquisition 
of National Forest System lands or Bureau of Land Management 
public lands, to provide protections and certainty for private 
landowners related to resurveying such public lands, 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 ``Protection and Transparency for 
Adjacent Landowners Act''.

TITLE I--REQUIREMENTS FOR FOREST SERVICE AND BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT 
                   LAND ACQUISITIONS AND CONVEYANCES

SEC. 101. ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR FOREST SERVICE AND BUREAU OF LAND 
                    MANAGEMENT LAND ACQUISITIONS AND CONVEYANCES.

  (a) Notice to Adjacent Landowners.--
          (1) Land acquisitions.--Section 205 of the Federal Land 
        Policy and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1715) is amended 
        by adding at the end the following new subsection:
  ``(f) Notice to Adjacent Landowners.--As part of the acquisition of a 
parcel of non-Federal lands under this section, section 206, or other 
applicable law that will become public lands or National Forest System 
lands, the Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case may 
be, shall provide advance written notification to each owner of land 
that is adjacent to the parcel of land to be acquired. To assist in 
identifying adjacent landowners, and to meet the requirements of this 
subsection, the Secretary concerned should use the most recently 
available property tax records.''.
          (2) Land conveyances.--Section 208 of the Federal Land Policy 
        and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1718) is amended--
                  (A) by inserting ``(a) Issuance of Patent and Other 
                Conveyance Documents.--'' before the first sentence and 
                ``(b) Other Terms and Conditions.--'' before the second 
                sentence; and
                  (B) by adding at the end the following new 
                subsection:
  ``(c) Notice to Adjacent Landowners.--As part of the conveyance of a 
parcel of public lands or National Forest System lands by sale, 
exchange, or other disposal method under section 203 or 206 or other 
applicable law, the Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, as the 
case may be, shall provide advance written notification to each owner 
of land that is adjacent to the parcel of land to be conveyed. To 
assist in identifying adjacent landowners, and to meet the requirements 
of this subsection, the Secretary concerned should use the most 
recently available property tax records.''.
  (b) Oversight of Use of Third-Party Facilitators.--
          (1) Acquisition.--Section 205 of the Federal Land Policy and 
        Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1715) is amended by inserting 
        after subsection (f), as added by subsection (a)(1), the 
        following new subsection:
  ``(g) Oversight of Use of Third-Party Facilitators.--(1) If the 
acquisition process for a parcel of non-Federal lands under this 
section, section 206, or other applicable law that will become public 
lands or National Forest System lands involves the use of a third-party 
facilitator, the Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case 
may be, shall require, as a condition of the approval of the 
acquisition--
          ``(A) submission of all purchase contracts and related 
        agreements held by the third-party facilitator related to the 
        parcel to be acquired on written request by the appropriate 
        official;
          ``(B) supervisor review of such purchase contracts and 
        related agreements, the purpose of the acquisition, and other 
        terms and conditions of the acquisition; and
          ``(C) a clear statement to Bureau of Land Management and 
        United States Forest Service employees that the Secretary or 
        the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case may be, has 
        determined that all business information submitted under 
        paragraphs (A), (B), and (C) of subsection (d) is confidential 
        and all information covered by the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 
        U.S.C. 552a) will be protected to the extent allowed by law.
  ``(2) In this subsection, the term `third-party facilitator' means 
any entity (other than an agent of the United States) whose role in a 
real estate transaction is to assist the buyer or seller, or both, in 
reaching agreement in the transaction.''.
          (2) Land conveyances.--Section 208 of the Federal Land Policy 
        and Management Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1718) is amended by 
        inserting after subsection (c), as added by subsection (a)(2), 
        the following new subsection:
  ``(d) Oversight of Use of Third-Party Facilitators.--(1) If the 
process by which a parcel of public lands or National Forest System 
lands will be conveyed by sale, exchange, or other disposal method 
under section 203 or 206 or other applicable law, involves the use of a 
third-party facilitator, the Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, 
as the case may be, shall require, as a condition of the approval of 
the conveyance--
          ``(A) submission of all purchase contracts and related 
        agreements held by the third-party facilitator related to the 
        Federal land to be conveyed on written request by the 
        appropriate official;
          ``(B) submission to appraisers of contact information for 
        prospective end owners of the Federal land to be conveyed;
          ``(C) supervisor review of such purchase contracts and 
        related agreements, the purpose of the conveyance, and other 
        terms and conditions of the conveyance; and
          ``(D) a clear statement to Bureau of Land Management and 
        United States Forest Service employees that the Secretary or 
        the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case may be, has 
        determined that all business information submitted under 
        paragraphs (A), (B), and (C) of this subsection is confidential 
        and all information covered by the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 
        U.S.C. 552a) will be protected to the extent allowed by law.
  ``(2) In this subsection, the term `third-party facilitator' means 
any entity (other than an agent of the United States) whose role in a 
real estate transaction is to assist the buyer or seller, or both, in 
reaching agreement in the transaction.''.

       TITLE II--BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT RESURVEY REQUIREMENTS

SEC. 201. BUREAU RESURVEY TRANSPARENCY; NOTICE REQUIREMENTS.

  (a) Notice.--
          (1) In general.--Not later than 30 days before the 
        commencement of a resurvey of Federal land under the 
        administrative jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management, 
        the Secretary shall notify all property owners with land 
        abutting or adjacent to the Federal land being resurveyed of 
        the pending resurvey. If a resurvey extends the boundaries of 
        Federal land, the Secretary shall notify affected landowners of 
        the results of the resurvey not later than 30 days after the 
        completion of the survey.
          (2) Notification.--The Secretary shall use certified or 
        registered mail to notify landowners under this subsection.
          (3) Identification of landowners.--When identifying affected 
        landowners for the purpose of notification under this 
        subsection, the Secretary shall use the most recently available 
        property tax records.
  (b) Public Comment.--Not later than 30 days after completing a 
resurvey, the Secretary shall publish a notice in the Federal Register. 
Affected landowners may comment to the Secretary and by submitting 
formal comments to the Federal Register notice.

SEC. 202. PROTECTION OF PERSONS.

  If a resurvey results in land previously thought to be privately 
owned to be reclassified as Federal land, the persons thought to be a 
private owner of such land--
          (1) shall--
                  (A) be given the right of first refusal to purchase 
                the land for fair market value minus the value of any 
                significant improvements made to such lands; or
                  (B) be reimbursed for the fair market value of any 
                significant improvements made to such lands; and
          (2) may not be charged with willful trespass onto such land 
        unless the person used such lands with the knowledge that the 
        lands should be classified as Federal land.

SEC. 203. DEFINITIONS.

  For the purposes of this title:
          (1) Resurvey.--The term ``resurvey'' means an official 
        rerunning and remarking intended to supersede the records of 
        the original survey.
          (2) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        the Interior, acting through the Director of the Bureau of Land 
        Management.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of H.R. 6682 is to amend the Federal Land 
Policy and Management Act of 1976 to improve the transparency 
and oversight of land conveyances involving disposal or 
acquisition of National Forest System lands or Bureau of Land 
Management public lands and to provide protections and 
certainty for private landowners relating to resurveying such 
public lands.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    The federal government manages roughly 640 million acres of 
land throughout the United States.\1\ A majority of this land 
is in western States, where the federal government controls 
over 50 percent of the surface.\2\ The federal land management 
agencies in charge of administering these lands frequently 
acquire, convey, or exchange these lands with willing persons, 
entities, or State and local governments. The notification and 
oversight process of these actions has on occasion caused 
confusion and frustration for landowners with land adjacent to 
federal lands.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\Vincent, Carol Hardy. ``Federal Land Ownership: Overview and 
Data.'' Congressional Research Service. March 3, 2017.
    \2\Vincent, Carol Hardy. ``Federal Land Ownership: Overview and 
Data.'' Congressional Research Service. March 3, 2017.
    \3\Mountain Region Group, Letter to Congressman Scott Tipton 
provided to the House Committee on Natural Resources, Detailing a 
Colorado small business's dispute over the BLM notification process, 
July 14, 2014.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Resurveys carried out by the Bureau of Land Management 
(BLM) have also created conflicts, with BLM citing inaccurate 
existing boundaries as it has reclassified lands that were 
previously thought to be private as federal lands. One specific 
example of the negative impact caused by these 
reclassifications took place in 2009, when BLM conducted a 
resurvey of federal land in Mesa County, Colorado.\4\ The 
resurvey resulted in the reclassification of land, originally 
thought to be owned by a private owner, as federal land. BLM 
subsequently charged that individual with trespassing and with 
the illegal removal of sand and gravel from federal lands, 
which resulted in a fine of over $250,000.\5\ Similar 
reclassifications have created other conflicts elsewhere in 
United States, with private land owners having their property 
rights put into jeopardy.\6\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \4\Herald, P. M. (n.d.). Tipton slams federal land managers. The 
Durango Herald. Retrieved from https://durangoherald.com/articles/76357
    \5\Id.
    \6\Anderson, S. (2018, February 09). Cassidy: Federal government 
must keep word to Lake Bistineau landowners. //bossierpress.com/
cassidy-federal-government-must-keep-word-lake-bistineau-landowners/
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    H.R. 6682 institutes much needed transparency and oversight 
to the federal land acquisition and sale process by requiring 
BLM and the U.S. Forest Service to provide written notification 
to landowners with land adjacent to any parcel that is set to 
be acquired or sold. Additionally, this legislation requires 
BLM, in the event of a land resurvey, to notify property owners 
with land that abuts the federal land identified for resurvey. 
This bill will also protect landowners from instances when BLM 
determines that land, previously believed to be private, should 
be reclassified as federal land. The bill further provides that 
landowners are given the right of first refusal to purchase the 
reclassified land for fair market value, or to be reimbursed 
for any significant improvements they made to the reclassified 
land. This bill also prevents private landowners from being 
punished for trespassing unless they used the land after they 
had been properly notified that the land was owned by the 
federal government.

                            Committee Action

    H.R. 6682 was introduced on August 28, 2018, by Congressman 
Scott R. Tipton (R-CO). The bill was referred to the Committee 
on Natural Resources and within the Committee, to the 
Subcommittee on Federal Lands. The Subcommittee held a hearing 
on the bill on September 6, 2018. On September 26, 2018, the 
Natural Resources Committee met to consider the bill. The 
Subcommittee was discharged by unanimous consent. Congressman 
Tipton offered an amendment designated #1; it was adopted by 
voice vote. No additional amendments were offered, and the 
bill, as amended, was ordered favorably reported to the House 
of Representatives by voice vote.

            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 and Congressional 
                               Budget Act

    1. Cost of Legislation and the Congressional Budget Act. 
With respect to the requirements of clause 3(c)(2) and (3) of 
rule XIII of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
sections 308(a) and 402 of the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974, the Committee has received the following estimate for the 
bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                  Washington, DC, November 1, 2018.
Hon. Rob Bishop,
Chairman, Committee on Natural Resources,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 6682, the 
Protection and Transparency for Adjacent Landowners Act.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Janani 
Shankaran.
            Sincerely,
                                                Keith Hall,
                                                          Director.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 6682--Protection and Transparency for Adjacent Landowners Act

    H.R. 6682 would require the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 
and the Forest Service to provide written notification to any 
adjacent landowner when the federal government acquires or 
conveys an adjoining parcel of land. The bill also would direct 
BLM to notify adjacent landowners 30 days in advance of 
commencing a resurvey of federal land.
    Under the bill, if a resurvey resulted in land previously 
thought to be privately owned to be reclassified as federal 
land, the former owner would be given the right of first 
refusal to purchase the land or would be reimbursed for the 
fair market value of any improvements made to the land. 
According to BLM, implementing that provision would not change 
existing practices. In addition, using information from the 
agencies on existing public notification activities, CBO 
estimates that any additional costs to notify landowners under 
H.R. 6682 would be less than $500,000 over the 2019-2023 
period; such spending would be subject to the availability of 
appropriated funds.
    Enacting H.R. 6682 would not affect direct spending or 
revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.
    CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 6682 would not increase 
net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four 
consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2029.
    H.R. 6682 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Janani 
Shankaran. The estimate was reviewed by H. Samuel Papenfuss, 
Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.
    2. 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 amend the Federal Land Policy and 
Management Act of 1976 to improve the transparency and 
oversight of land conveyances involving disposal or acquisition 
of National Forest System lands or Bureau of Land Management 
public lands and to provide protections and certainty for 
private landowners relating to resurveying such public lands.

                           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. This bill does not contain any 
directed rule makings.
    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 Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by 
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (new matter is 
printed in italic and existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman):

             FEDERAL LAND POLICY AND MANAGEMENT ACT OF 1976



           *       *       *       *       *       *       *
TITLE II--LAND USE PLANNING; LAND ACQUISITION AND DISPOSITION

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                              acquisitions

  Sec. 205. (a) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law, 
the Secretary, with respect to the public lands and the 
Secretary of Agriculture, with respect to the acquisition of 
access over non-Federal lands to units of the National Forest 
System, are authorized to acquire pursuant to this Act by 
purchase, exchange, donation, or eminent domain, lands or 
interests therein: Provided, That with respect to the public 
lands, the Secretary may exercise the power of eminent domain 
only if necessary to secure access to public lands, and then 
only if the lands so acquired are confined to as narrow a 
corridor as is necessary to serve such purpose. Nothing in this 
subsection shall be construed as expanding or limiting the 
authority of the Secretary of Agriculture to acquire land by 
eminent domain within the boundaries of units of the National 
Forest System.
  (b) Acquisitions pursuant to this section shall be consistent 
with the mission of the department involved and with applicable 
departmental land-use plans.
  (c) Except as provided in subsection (e), lands and interests 
in lands acquired by the Secretary pursuant to this section or 
section 206 shall, upon acceptance of title, become public 
lands, and, for the administration of public land laws not 
repealed by this Act, shall remain public lands. If such 
acquired lands or interests in lands are located within the 
exterior boundaries of a grazing district established pursuant 
to the first section of the Act of June 28, 1934 (48 Stat. 
1269, as amended; 43 U.S.C. 315) (commonly known as the 
``Taylor Grazing Act''), they shall become a part of that 
district. Lands and interests in lands acquired pursuant to 
this section which are within boundaries of the National Forest 
System may be transferred to the Secretary of Agriculture and 
shall then become National Forest System lands and subject to 
all the laws, rules, and regulations applicable thereto.
  (d) Lands and interests in lands acquired by the Secretary of 
Agriculture pursuant to this section shall, upon acceptance of 
title, become National Forest System lands subject to all the 
laws, rules, and regulations applicable thereto.
  (e) Lands acquired by the Secretary pursuant to this section 
or section 206 in exchange for lands which were revested in the 
United States pursuant to the provisions of the Act of June 9, 
1916 (39 Stat. 218) or reconveyed to the United States pursuant 
to the provisions of the Act of February 26, 1919 (40 Stat. 
1179), shall be considered for all purposes to have the same 
status as, and shall be administered in accordance with the 
same provisions of law applicable to, the revested or 
reconveyed lands exchange for the lands acquired by the 
Secretary.
  (f) Notice to Adjacent Landowners.--As part of the 
acquisition of a parcel of non-Federal lands under this 
section, section 206, or other applicable law that will become 
public lands or National Forest System lands, the Secretary or 
the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case may be, shall provide 
advance written notification to each owner of land that is 
adjacent to the parcel of land to be acquired. To assist in 
identifying adjacent landowners, and to meet the requirements 
of this subsection, the Secretary concerned should use the most 
recently available property tax records.
  (g) Oversight of Use of Third-Party Facilitators.--(1) If the 
acquisition process for a parcel of non-Federal lands under 
this section, section 206, or other applicable law that will 
become public lands or National Forest System lands involves 
the use of a third-party facilitator, the Secretary or the 
Secretary of Agriculture, as the case may be, shall require, as 
a condition of the approval of the acquisition--
          (A) submission of all purchase contracts and related 
        agreements held by the third-party facilitator related 
        to the parcel to be acquired on written request by the 
        appropriate official;
          (B) supervisor review of such purchase contracts and 
        related agreements, the purpose of the acquisition, and 
        other terms and conditions of the acquisition; and
          (C) a clear statement to Bureau of Land Management 
        and United States Forest Service employees that the 
        Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case 
        may be, has determined that all business information 
        submitted under paragraphs (A), (B), and (C) of 
        subsection (d) is confidential and all information 
        covered by the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a) will 
        be protected to the extent allowed by law.
  (2) In this subsection, the term ``third-party facilitator'' 
means any entity (other than an agent of the United States) 
whose role in a real estate transaction is to assist the buyer 
or seller, or both, in reaching agreement in the transaction.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                              conveyances

  Sec. 208. (a) Issuance of Patent and Other Conveyance 
Documents._The Secretary shall issue all patents or other 
documents of conveyance after any disposal authorized by this 
Act.
  (b) Other Terms And Conditions.--The Secretary shall insert 
in any such patent or other document of conveyance he issues, 
except in the case of land exchanges, for which the provisions 
of subsection 206(b) of this Act shall apply, such terms, 
covenants, conditions, and reservations as he deems necessary 
to insure proper land use and protection of the public 
interest: Provided, That a conveyance of lands by the 
Secretary, subject to such terms, covenants, conditions, and 
reservations, shall not exempt the grantee from compliance with 
applicable Federal or State law or State land use plans: 
Provided further, That the Secretary shall not make conveyances 
of public lands containing terms and conditions which would, at 
the time of the conveyance, constitute a violation of any law 
or regulation pursuant to State and local land use plans, or 
programs.
  (c) Notice to Adjacent Landowners.--As part of the conveyance 
of a parcel of public lands or National Forest System lands by 
sale, exchange, or other disposal method under section 203 or 
206 or other applicable law, the Secretary or the Secretary of 
Agriculture, as the case may be, shall provide advance written 
notification to each owner of land that is adjacent to the 
parcel of land to be conveyed. To assist in identifying 
adjacent landowners, and to meet the requirements of this 
subsection, the Secretary concerned should use the most 
recently available property tax records.
  (d) Oversight of Use of Third-Party Facilitators.--(1) If the 
process by which a parcel of public lands or National Forest 
System lands will be conveyed by sale, exchange, or other 
disposal method under section 203 or 206 or other applicable 
law, involves the use of a third-party facilitator, the 
Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case may be, 
shall require, as a condition of the approval of the 
conveyance--
          (A) submission of all purchase contracts and related 
        agreements held by the third-party facilitator related 
        to the Federal land to be conveyed on written request 
        by the appropriate official;
          (B) submission to appraisers of contact information 
        for prospective end owners of the Federal land to be 
        conveyed;
          (C) supervisor review of such purchase contracts and 
        related agreements, the purpose of the conveyance, and 
        other terms and conditions of the conveyance; and
          (D) a clear statement to Bureau of Land Management 
        and United States Forest Service employees that the 
        Secretary or the Secretary of Agriculture, as the case 
        may be, has determined that all business information 
        submitted under paragraphs (A), (B), and (C) of this 
        subsection is confidential and all information covered 
        by the Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a) will be 
        protected to the extent allowed by law.
  (2) In this subsection, the term ``third-party facilitator'' 
means any entity (other than an agent of the United States) 
whose role in a real estate transaction is to assist the buyer 
or seller, or both, in reaching agreement in the transaction.

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                            DISSENTING VIEWS

    While we understand the sponsor's concern about the need 
for transparency and accountability, this bill is an overreach 
that would create confusion and slow down routine land 
management activities.
    The Bureau of Land Management's Cadastral Survey Program 
updates surveys of federal land using modern technology to 
ensure the accuracy of records and maps, some of which date 
back to the 19th Century. This is an involved but necessary 
process.
    A re-survey can lead to a determination that land thought 
to be private actually belongs to the federal government. This 
is a frustrating result and the government has a responsibility 
to communicate clearly about ongoing survey activities and 
results. Unfortunately, this bill addresses that concern in a 
manner that is bound to cause confusion and slow down agency 
planning efforts.
    The term 'adjacent land' is extremely vague and makes it 
difficult to determine which landowners must be notified. This 
creates an additional burden on agencies and would only serve 
to generate additional litigation.
    The bill also mandates a ``right of first refusal'' for 
land resurveyed into federal ownership and reimbursement for 
structures or other improvements that exist on the land. This 
blanket right could disrupt land exchanges or other public 
interest conveyances of public land, and it does not allow for 
alternative means of resolving an already challenging 
situation.
    We also have concerns with the provision regarding the use 
of third-party facilitators. As drafted, the bill would make it 
more difficult to carry out routine exchanges and acquisitions 
intended to make federal land management more efficient and 
advance American conservation priorities. Prior to markup, the 
committee received a letter signed by the American Fly Fishing 
Trade Association, Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Izaak 
Walton League of America, the National Deer Alliance, The 
Conservation Fund, The Trust for Public Lands, and the Theodore 
Roosevelt Conservation Partnership outlining concerns with this 
section of the bill. The letter states that ``H.R. 6682 would 
impose unnecessary bureaucratic requirements on private 
landowner transitions facilitated by conservation organizations 
. . . The proposal is likely to cause undue delays, frustrate 
landowner needs and result in conservation losses that prevent 
public access.''
    While we appreciate the sponsor's intent, this bill is a 
bridge too far and simply creates additional red tape and 
bureaucratic hurdles designed to slow down land acquisition.

                                   Raul M. Grijalva,
                                           Ranking Member.
                                   Alan Lowenthal.
                                   Grace F. Napolitano.
                                   
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