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115th Congress  }                                      {   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session    }                                      {   115-305

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

 
             CONFIRMING STATE LAND GRANTS FOR EDUCATION ACT

                                _______
                                

 September 12, 2017.--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

                        [To accompany H.R. 2582]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Natural Resources, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 2582) to authorize the State of Utah to select 
certain lands that are available for disposal under the Pony 
Express Resource Management Plan to be used for the support and 
benefit of State institutions, 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 ``Confirming State Land Grants for 
Education Act''.

SEC. 2. AUTHORIZATION.

  (a) In General.--Subject to valid existing rights, the State of Utah 
may select any lands in T6S and T7S, R1W, Salt Lake Base and Meridian, 
that are owned by the United States, under the administrative 
jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management, and identified as 
available for disposal by land exchange in the Record of Decision for 
the Pony Express Resource Management Plan and Rangeland Program Summary 
for Utah County (January 1990), as amended by the Pony Express Plan 
Amendment (November 1997), in fulfillment of the land grants made in 
sections 6, 8, and 12 of the Act of July 16, 1894 (28 Stat. 107) as 
generally depicted on the map entitled ``Proposed Utah County Quantity 
Grants'' and dated June 27, 2017, to further the purposes of the State 
of Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration, without 
further land use planning action by the Bureau of Land Management.
  (b) Application.--The criteria listed in Decision 3 of the Lands 
Program of the resource management plan described in subsection (a) 
shall not apply to any land selected under subsection (a).
  (c) Effect on Limitation.--Nothing in this Act affects the limitation 
established under section 2815(d) of the National Defense Authorization 
Act for Fiscal Year 2000 (Public Law 106-65).

                          PURPOSE OF THE BILL

    The purpose of H.R. 2582 is to authorize the State of Utah 
to select certain lands that are available for disposal under 
the Pony Express Resource Management Plan to be used for the 
support and benefit of State institutions.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    The Utah Enabling Act (28 Stat. 107), passed in 1894, 
granted Utah the right to select public lands for the support 
and benefit of state institutions, including an agricultural 
college (now Utah State University), in addition to the more 
familiar school land grants. Lands granted to Utah under this 
Act are managed by the Utah School and Institutional Trust 
Lands Administration (SITLA), which is an independent state 
agency that manages Utah's 3.4 million acres of trust lands.\1\ 
These trust lands generate revenue primarily through resource 
extraction and real estate sales.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\State of Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands 
Administration webpage, Our Agency, https://trustlands.utah.gov/our-
agency/
    \2\Wendine Thompson Dawson and Alden Boetsc ``Utah Trust Lands & 
Education Funding'' the Sonoran Institute/Lincoln Institute of Land 
Policy Joint Venture and Children's Land Alliance Supporting Schools 
(CLASS) https://datatoolkits.lincolninst.edu/subcenters/managing-state-
trust-lands/state/ed-funding-ut.pdf
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Several thousand acres of unfulfilled selection rights are 
currently outstanding. In 1998, SITLA filed an application with 
the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to select 444.05 acres of 
BLM land near the City of Eagle Mountain in Utah County for the 
benefit of the Utah State University land trust. This selection 
application was subsequently modified to add an additional 80 
acres near the City of Saratoga Springs.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \3\Information provided by the Utah School and Institutional Trust 
Lands Administration to the Committee on Natural Resources
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    For several years, BLM worked to process this application, 
and SITLA has incurred significant expenses in obtaining 
necessary archaeological clearances for the selection. However, 
in 2006, BLM determined that the applicable federal land 
management plan did not allow BLM to proceed with the 
selection. The basis for this decision was that, although the 
subject lands were classified in the land management plan for 
disposal by land exchange, the disposal language did not 
expressly refer to state selections, so selections (as opposed 
to land exchanges) could not be processed.\4\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \4\Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    SITLA believes that under applicable legal authority state 
selections are in fact authorized under the land management 
plan, but BLM disagrees. SITLA has also requested that BLM 
consider a plan amendment to authorize the proposed selections, 
but BLM declined to do so due to inadequate staff and funding 
to process the plan amendment.\5\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \5\Ibid.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    H.R. 2582 would correct the legal technicality, and confirm 
that BLM may process the current 500-acre selection, and future 
state selections in the immediate area, without further land 
use planning. The selected lands would still be subject to 
environmental reviews before they are transferred to SITLA. 
This will allow the United States to fulfill commitments made 
in the Utah Enabling Act to provide land for support of higher 
education and other public purposes.

                            COMMITTEE ACTION

    H.R. 2582 was introduced on May 22, 2017, by Congresswoman 
Mia B. Love (R-UT). The bill was referred to the Committee on 
Natural Resources, and within the Committee to the Subcommittee 
on Federal Lands. On July 14, 2017, the Subcommittee held a 
hearing on the bill. On July 25, 2017, the Natural Resources 
Committee met to consider the bill. The Subcommittee was 
discharged by unanimous consent. Congressman Rob Bishop (R-UT) 
offered an amendment designated #1; it was adopted by unanimous 
consent. Congressman Raul M. Grijalva (D-AZ) offered an 
amendment designated 001; it was adopted by unanimous consent. 
No further amendments were offered, and the bill, as amended, 
was ordered favorably reported to the House of Representatives 
by unanimous consent on July 26, 2017.

            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 and the Congressional Budget Act of 
1974. 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 enclosed cost estimate for 
the bill from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office:

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                Washington, DC, September 11, 2017.
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. 2582, the 
Confirming State Land Grants for Education Act.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Jeff LaFave.
            Sincerely,
                                                Keith Hall,
                                                          Director.
    Enclosure.

H.R. 2582--Confirming State Land Grants for Education Act

    H.R. 2582 would allow the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 
to process the selection of 520 acres of federal land in Utah 
under the Utah Enabling Act of 1894. That act authorized the 
state of Utah to select certain federal lands to be held in 
trust by the School and Institutional Trust Lands 
Administration (SITLA), an independent state agency, for the 
benefit of the state. The state used that authority to select 
520 acres of land that BLM identified for disposal. However, 
because BLM's land use plan for the area containing the 
selected lands does not allow land to be disposed of through 
the land selection process, the agency cannot transfer those 
lands to the state without revising its existing plan. Based on 
information from BLM, CBO does not expect the agency to make 
the necessary revisions to that plan within the next 10 years.
    Under the bill, BLM would be authorized to process SITLA's 
land selections without revising its existing land use plan. 
The affected lands currently generate receipts from grazing 
allotments, rights-of-way, and gravel pits. Based on historical 
collections, CBO estimates those receipts will total less than 
$25,000 a year over the next 10 years. Thus, CBO estimates that 
allowing SITLA to take the affected lands into trust would not 
have a significant effect on offsetting receipts (which are 
recorded as reductions in direct spending) over the 2018-2027 
period. Because enacting the bill would affect direct spending, 
pay-as-you-go procedures apply. The bill would not affect 
revenues.
    CBO estimates that enacting the bill would not increase net 
direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four 
consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2028.
    H.R. 2582 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would benefit the state of Utah and local governments by 
expediting the transfer of federal lands to the state. The 
transfer could increase revenue from resource development on 
state trust lands; those revenues are used to fund public 
schools in Utah. Any costs incurred by the state of Utah or 
local governments associated would result from voluntary 
commitments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Jeff LaFave. The 
estimate was approved 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 authorize the State of Utah to 
select certain lands that are available for disposal under the 
Pony Express Resource Management Plan to be used for the 
support and benefit of State institutions.

                           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

    This bill makes no changes to existing law.