Lands bill could beat year’s end
Rep. Mark Amodei said he’s not a handicapper, but there’s a chance the Douglas County Lands Bill could pass congress by the end of the year.
“We’re setting the table,” he told commissioners on Thursday. “If the Senate makes a move on them, we on south side of the building are ready.”
He said there’s not much time left in the 114th Congress.
Part of the issue is the August break and elections, which cuts the amount of time Congress will be in session.
“Between now and end of year, we’ll spend 30 days in session with August recess, back all September, October we’re out for elections, then we’re contending with the holiday schedule.”
He said that it helps that most people support the bill.
“It has a nice mix of wilderness, flood control issues and the tribe,” he said. “The good news is that if there are further tweaks that need to be done, by all means let us know.”
Amodei introduced a revision of the Douglas County Conservation Act of 2015 in the House of Representatives in February.
The bill was introduced last year in the Senate and the House.
The Toiyabe Chapter of the Sierra Club, passed a resolution opposing the bill, expressing concern about 10,000 acres in the Pine Nut Mountains above Johnson Lane identified for sale, including 7,990 acres to be gifted for flood control. The Sierra Club is seeking removal of the language on the reversionary clause for the 10,000 acres.
That land has been slated for disposal by the BLM for 28 years. Without the bill, it could be auctioned off with no benefit to Douglas County.
The 10,000 acres slated for disposal is within a few miles of 14,500 acres of Pine Nut land the Bureau of Land Management plans to buy from Chris Bently near the northern Douglas line.