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Senate Provision in Policy Bill Would Clarify Authority for Land Exchanges

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  • June 30, 2011
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A provision in the Senate version of the fiscal 2012 defense authorization bill would clarify an existing authority allowing the military to exchange parcels to protect installations from encroachment and for other needs.

Now the authority, 10 U.S.C. Section 2869, allows the military services to exchange excess property at active installations to another party who agrees to carry out a land acquisition, most commonly to protect military training or testing from encroachment. The statute also applies to property at a closed or realigned installation as long as the transfer follows an approved reuse plan for the BRAC site.

Exchanges intended to prevent encroachment also rely on Section 2684a, the statute which authorizes the Readiness and Environmental Protection Initiative program.

The language in the Senate version of the authorization bill provides DOD slightly more flexibility in carrying out land swaps, authorizing the military to convey property “to any eligible entity who agrees, in exchange for the real property, to transfer to the United States all right, title, and interest of the entity in and to a parcel of real property, including any improvements thereon under their control, or to carry out a land acquisition.”

The Senate provision also would remove Section 2869′s existing sunset clause, which calls for the property exchange authority to expire Sept. 30, 2013.

The Senate Armed Services Committee approved its version of the authorization bill June 17. The bill, S. 1253, and the committee report, S. Rpt. 112-26, are available on Thomas.

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