Land Sale Requirements
Consistency with Land Use Planning
The BLM must confirm that the lands being considered for sale have been identified as potentially suitable for disposal in an approved land use plan or plan amendment. If the lands have not been identified for potential disposal in an existing land use plan, the BLM has the discretion of completing a plan amendment to assess and determine if disposal of the land would be in the public interest.
In addition, the BLM must conduct inventories of the property to determine if any significant resources are present, including but not limited to cultural resources, federally listed or sensitive plant and animal species and/or critical habitat, riparian areas, etc. Inventories must also be completed to assess outstanding third party rights and to confirm that there are no hazardous materials or other liabilities on or associated with the property.
The BLM must assess the mineral values associated with the lands to be sold. If there are no known mineral values in the land, the mineral estate will be conveyed concurrently with the surface estate. If any mineral values are found to exist, those mineral interests will be reserved to the United States when the property is sold.
BLM must coordinate disposal actions with the appropriate state and local governmental entities, authorized users, adjoining land owners, and other parties that have expressed an interest. In most cases, this coordination occurs at the beginning stages of a proposed land disposal action, and again at the conclusion when the Notice of Realty Action (see below) is published.
Using the information obtained through inventory of the property and through coordination with local governments, authorized users, adjoining land owners, and interested parties, the BLM completes an analysis to assess the potential impacts of the proposed disposal action. If the analysis concludes that disposal of the land would result in impacts to resources and/or existing uses that can not be properly mitigated, the lands would most likely not be made available for sale.
Appraisal of Property
The BLM must have the property to be sold appraised by a qualified appraiser to determine the current market value of the property. The appraisal must then be reviewed and approved by the Department of Interior's Appraisal Services Directorate. The minimum acceptable bid amount for a parcel of land will be established by the Federal appraisal.
Notice of Realty Action
The BLM must provide notice of the proposed sale action to the U.S. Senate and members of the House of Representatives, the Governors of Oregon and Washington, the Oregon Department of State Lands and/or the Washington State Lands Commission, adjoining land owners, authorized users, and to other known interested parties. Notice of the proposed sale will be published in the Federal Register and in a newspaper in general circulation in the area where the lands to be sold are located.
Conveyee Qualifications for Land Sales
Tracts of land may be sold to:
- A citizen of the United States 18 years of age or over;
- A corporation subject to the laws of any State or of the United States;
- A State, State instrumentality or political subdivision authorized to hold property; and
- An entity legally capable of conveying and holding lands or interest therein under the laws of the State within which the lands to be conveyed are located.