SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska




August 10, 2016
Wednesday PM

(SitNews) Juneau, Alaska - A long-standing land exchange issue that proved to be an inefficient and cumbersome process has been fixed today now that Representative Cathy Munoz’s House Bill 274 has been signed by Governor Bill Walker.

HB 274 modifies existing Title 38 statutory framework to create a uniform process for land-exchanges and to help the Alaska Department of Natural Resources in their ability to effectively manage state land resources.

The previous law required that the exchange be of exact equal value and that only the land value is considered. This bill changes that by implementing the municipal land exchange requirements found in Title 29 and that the exchange value be of approximate equal value. Additionally, it removes the one year limitation on the validity of an appraisal, which in some cases caused exchanges to start over from the beginning.

“I’d like to thank the Governor for signing this important piece of legislation,” Rep. Muñoz (R-Juneau) said. “After working with a local non-profit to resolve a longstanding land exchange issue, I realized that the old process was time consuming, inefficient and difficult to execute. HB 247 is another step forward for increased government efficiency.”

HB 274 maintains the legislative review and approval for exchanges that exceed $5 million in state land value or for exchanges other than approximate equal value and any exchange must be consistent with federal law.

There are four types of land exchanges authorized under Title 38; Federal, Tribal, Mental Health Land, Private. The most recent completed exchange involved State land in Skagway and federal land in Gustavus for the Falls Creek hydro project in 2006, a process that began in 1980.



Reporting & Editing by Mary Kauffman, SitNews


Source of News:

Alaska House Majority



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