Mar 07 2013
Official Short: Scofield Land Transfer Act
Long Title: To authorize the Secretary of the Interior to convey certain interests in Federal land acquired for the Scofield Project in Carbon County, Utah.
Sponsors: Mr. Hatch and Mr. Lee.
- March 7, 2013.-- Introduced.
- April 15, 2013.--Mr. Lee added as cosponsor.
- April 16, 2013.--Subcommittee on Water and Power hearing held.
Scofield Land Transfer Act (Introduced in Senate -
S 510 IS
interests in Federal land acquired for the Scofield Project in Carbon County,
Mr. HATCH introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to
the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
interests in Federal land acquired for the Scofield Project in Carbon County,
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United
States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
- This Act may be cited as the `Scofield Land Transfer Act'.
SEC. 2. DEFINITIONS.
- In this Act:
- (1) CLAIMANT- The term `claimant' means any person or entity that, according
- to the records in the office of the Recorder for Carbon County, Utah, as of the
- date of enactment of this Act, claims title to, or an interest in, the Federal
- (2) FEDERAL LAND- The term `Federal land' means the land acquired by Price
- River Water Conservation District and transferred to the United States for use
- in the construction and operation of Scofield Dam and Reservoir located between
- the normal water surface elevation and the property boundary elevation in the
- Scofield Reservoir basin.
- (3) FLOOD SURCHARGE ELEVATION- The term `flood surcharge elevation' means
- the elevation of 7640.3 in the North American Vertical Datum of 1988, which
- corresponds to the elevation of the crest of Scofield Dam.
- (4) FUND- The term `Fund' means the Scofield Reservoir Fund established by
- section 3(b)(7)(A).
- (5) LIFE ESTATE- The term `life estate' means--
- (A) if the claimant is a person, an interest of the claimant in the Federal
- land that will revert to the United States on the date of the death of the
- claimant; and
- (B) if the claimant is an entity, an interest in the Federal land of a
- person designated by the claimant that will revert to the United States on the
- date of the death of the designated person.
- (6) NORMAL WATER SURFACE ELEVATION- The term `normal water surface
- elevation' means the contour elevation of 7621.8 in the North American Vertical
- Datum of 1988, which corresponds to the elevation of the crest of the spillway
- of Scofield Dam.
- (7) PROPERTY BOUNDARY ELEVATION- The term `property boundary elevation'
- means the contour elevation 7630, as surveyed by McGonagle and Ulrich, Land
- Surveyors, in 1926, which was transmuted to the current elevation of 7638.9 in
- the North American Vertical Datum of 1988 and which corresponds to 1.4 vertical
- feet below the crest of Scofield Dam.
- (8) SECRETARY- The term `Secretary' means the Secretary of the
- (9) STRUCTURE-
- (A) IN GENERAL- The term `structure' means a residence of a claimant in
- existence on the date of enactment of this Act.
- (B) INCLUSION- The term `structure' includes infrastructure associated with
- the residence, including water, power, sewer, and roads.
SEC. 3. CONVEYANCE OF SCOFIELD PROJECT LAND.
- (a) Survey; Notification- As soon as practicable after the date of enactment
- of this Act, the Secretary shall--
- (1) complete a full physical and title survey of the Federal land and any
- other related land in and around the Scofield Reservoir Basin; and
- (2) attempt to notify each of the claimants of the trespass or encroachment
- on the Federal land by the applicable claimant, including the existence of any
- trespassing or encroaching structures of the claimant.
- (b) Authorization To Convey Federal Land-
- (1) IN GENERAL- To resolve the issues of trespass and encroachment on the
- Federal land by the claimants, the Secretary may, on election by the claimant in
- accordance with paragraph (5)--
- (A) convey to a claimant fee interest in the claimed portion of the Federal
- land that is located above the normal water surface elevation, subject to
- paragraph (2); or
- (B) grant to a claimant a life estate permitting the continued occupation of
- the claimed portion of the Federal land above the normal water surface
- elevation, subject to paragraph (3).
- (2) CONVEYANCE REQUIREMENTS- A conveyance under paragraph (1)(A) shall be
- subject to--
- (A) the claimant paying to the Secretary the fair market value of the fee
- interest in the claimed portion of the Federal land, exclusive of the value of
- any structures;
- (B) the United States retaining a flood easement over the entire portion of
- Federal land conveyed; and
- (C) deed restrictions requiring that--
- (i) to prevent any structure on the portion of the Federal land conveyed
- from being displaced during a flood event, the claimant--
- (I) secure or tie down the structure;
- (II) rebuild the structure with the same footprint as the original
- structure; or
- (III) repair the structure; and
- (ii) all activities carried out by the claimant under clause (i) with
- respect to a structure be carried out in accordance with--
- (I) the International Building Code (as adopted by Utah Administrative Code
- R156-56); or
- (II) any other building code or engineering standard that
- (3) LIFE ESTATE REQUIREMENTS- A life estate granted under paragraph (1)(B)
- shall be subject to--
- (A) the claimant paying to the Secretary the fair market value of the life
- estate on the claimed portion of the Federal land;
- (B) provisions under which the claimant agrees to hold the United States
- harmless for all claims arising from the design, construction, operation, or
- replacement of Scofield Dam and Reservoir; and
- (C) provisions requiring the claimant to secure or tie down all structures
- on the portion of Federal land conveyed to prevent the structures from being
- displaced during a flood event in accordance with a code described in clause (i)
- or (ii) of paragraph (2)(C).
- (4) COMPLIANCE WITH ENVIRONMENTAL LAWS-
- (A) IN GENERAL- Before conveying the Federal land under paragraph (1)(A) or
- granting a life estate under paragraph (1)(B), the Secretary shall comply with
- all applicable requirements under--
- (i) the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et
- (ii) the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.);
- (iii) any other applicable law.
- (B) EFFECT- Nothing in this Act modifies or alters any obligations
- (i) the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.);
- (ii) the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et
- (5) DEADLINE FOR ELECTION- Not later than 5 years after the date of
- enactment of this Act, each of the claimants shall notify the Secretary in
- writing of whether the claimant opts to receive--
- (A) a fee interest in the claimed portion of the Federal land, in accordance
- with paragraph (1)(A); or
- (B) a life estate in the claimed portion of the Federal land, in accordance
- with paragraph (1)(B).
- (6) FAILURE TO NOTIFY SECRETARY-
- (A) IN GENERAL- If a claimant fails to submit to the Secretary a notice of
- an election in accordance with paragraph (5), any future claim by the claimant
- with respect to the Federal land shall be extinguished.
- (B) QUIET TITLE- On extinguishment of the claim under subparagraph (A), the
- Secretary shall take such action as is necessary to quiet title to the
- applicable portion of the Federal land, including removal of persons, entities,
- structures, and materials encumbering the applicable portion of the Federal
- (7) TRUST FUND-
- (A) ESTABLISHMENT- There is established in the Treasury of the United States
- a fund to be known as the `Scofield Reservoir Fund', to be administered by the
- Secretary and to be available, without fiscal year limitation, for providing
- enhanced recreation opportunities at Scofield Reservoir.
- (B) TRANSFERS TO FUND- There shall be deposited in the Fund any amounts
- received as consideration for a conveyance under paragraph (2)(A) or a granting
- of a life estate under paragraph (3)(A).
SEC. 4. REPORT.
- Not later than 3 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the
- Secretary shall submit to Congress a report that--
- (1) describes the status of any activities authorized under this
- (2) describes any obstacles to completing any outstanding transfers of title
- or grants of life estates;
- (3) specifies an anticipated date for completion of any outstanding
- transfers of title or grants of life estates; and
- (4) describes efforts to quiet title to any portion of the Federal land to
- which a claimant did not submit an election under section 3(b)(5).