The State Land Use Advisory Board has approved a resolution expressing its support of the Lyon County Economic Development and Conservation Act.
The resolution, approved at last month’s meeting, had been requested by Lyon County Commissioner Virgil Arellano, who is Lyon County’s appointed representative to the SLUPAC, serving as its current chairman. It passed at the May 23 meeting.
The resolution is in support of the act, currently Title II of H.R. 433 and as Senate Bill 159, as it is making its way through the 113th Congress.
The Lyon County Board of Commissioners passed a resolution on Aug. 18, 2011, expressing its support of this congressional action, while the Yerington City Council supported a similar resolution on Aug. 22, 2011.
The bill would allow for purchase of more than 10,000 acres of BLM-administered lands near the Nevada Copper Pumpkin Hollow Mine at fair market value, paid by Nevada Copper, to be conveyed to the city of Yerington for economic development and recreation purposes — land to be annexed into the city — and designation of 48,000 acres in southern Lyon County as the Wovoka Wilderness area.
The bill has had a lengthy journey through Congress. It began as the Yerington Land Conveyance and Sustainable Development Act in the 112th Congress, introduced in the House of Representatives as HR 4039 on Feb. 15, 2012, and as SB 2228, introduced in the Senate on March 23, 2012, over a year after the city of Yerington and Nevada Copper began working towards its introduction. It was later introduced as SB 3701 under the revised title, “Lyon County Economic Development and Conservation Act” on Dec. 20, 2012.
It was reintroduced in the 113th Congress as S. 159 on Jan. 28, 2013, and as HR 696 on Feb. 18, 2013. The Senate bill (S. 159) was then considered and reported favorably by the Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee on June 18, 2013, without one vote of dissent. It was then listed on the Senate Calendar/General Orders on April 28 this year, which lists it as ready for consideration and vote on the floor of the full Senate.
HR 696 was included in a combined bill as Title II, combined with six other bills, becoming known as HR 433, the Northern Nevada Land Conservation and Economic Development Act. It passed the House Natural Resources Committee by 29-14 vote on Jan. 28.
The bill would allow the city of Yerington to annex the lands and obtain a share of property and net proceeds of mines taxes. The resolution also notes 63 percent of the total acquired federal lands would be dedicated for uses other than mining, including infrastructure, commercial and industrial development, recreation, an events-concert venue and open space. It also notes the transfer of lands would not affect any sensitive natural resources.
The resolution also includes history about the conservation component that includes the proposed wilderness lands in the South Pine Grove Hills-Bald Mountain-East Walker River area. It also notes this area includes the Desert Creek-Fales Population Management Unit of the Bi-State Sage Grouse Distinct Population Segment, which is proposed for listing as a threatened or endangered species.
The land act is awaiting consideration and a vote o the floor of the U.S. Senate.
Article Source: RGJ