Home > 106th Congressional Bills > H.R. 3090 (ih) To amend the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act to restore certain lands to the Elim Native Corporation, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] ...

H.R. 3090 (ih) To amend the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act to restore certain lands to the Elim Native Corporation, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] ...


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        H.R.3090

                       One Hundred Sixth Congress

                                 of the

                        United States of America


                          AT THE SECOND SESSION

           Begun and held at the City of Washington on Monday,
             the twenty-fourth day of January, two thousand


                                 An Act


 
  To amend the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act to restore certain 
      lands to the Elim Native Corporation, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION. 1. ELIM NATIVE CORPORATION LAND RESTORATION.

    Section 19 of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 
1618) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection:
    ``(c)(1) Findings.--The Congress finds that--
        ``(A) approximately 350,000 acres of land were withdrawn by 
    Executive orders in 1917 for the use of the United States Bureau of 
    Education and of the Natives of Indigenous Alaskan race;
        ``(B) these lands comprised the Norton Bay Reservation (later 
    referred to as Norton Bay Native Reserve) and were set aside for 
    the benefit of the Native inhabitants of the Eskimo Village of 
    Elim, Alaska;
        ``(C) in 1929, 50,000 acres of land were deleted from the 
    Norton Bay Reservation by Executive order;
        ``(D) the lands were deleted from the Reservation for the 
    benefit of others;
        ``(E) the deleted lands were not available to the Native 
    inhabitants of Elim under subsection (b) of this section at the 
    time of passage of this Act;
        ``(F) the deletion of these lands has been and continues to be 
    a source of deep concern to the indigenous people of Elim; and
        ``(G) until this matter is dealt with, it will continue to be a 
    source of great frustration and sense of loss among the 
    shareholders of the Elim Native Corporation and their descendants.
    ``(2) Withdrawal.--The lands depicted and designated `Withdrawal 
Area' on the map dated October 19, 1999, along with their legal 
descriptions, on file with the Bureau of Land Management, and entitled 
`Land Withdrawal Elim Native Corporation', are hereby withdrawn, 
subject to valid existing rights, from all forms of appropriation or 
disposition under the public land laws, including the mining and 
mineral leasing laws, for a period of 2 years from the date of the 
enactment of this subsection, for selection by the Elim Native 
Corporation (hereinafter referred to as `Elim').
    ``(3) Authority To Select and Convey.--Elim is authorized to select 
in accordance with the rules set out in this paragraph, 50,000 acres of 
land (hereinafter referred to as `Conveyance Lands') within the 
boundary of the Withdrawal Area described in paragraph (2). The 
Secretary is authorized and directed to convey to Elim in fee the 
surface and subsurface estates to 50,000 acres of valid selections in 
the Withdrawal Area, subject to the covenants, reservations, terms and 
conditions and other provisions of this subsection.
        ``(A) Elim shall have 2 years from the date of the enactment of 
    this subsection in which to file its selection of no more than 
    60,000 acres of land from the area described in paragraph (2). The 
    selection application shall be filed with the Bureau of Land 
    Management, Alaska State Office, shall describe a single tract 
    adjacent to United States Survey No. 2548, Alaska, and shall be 
    reasonably compact, contiguous, and in whole sections except when 
    separated by unavailable land or when the remaining entitlement is 
    less than a whole section. Elim shall prioritize its selections 
    made pursuant to this subsection at the time such selections are 
    filed, and such prioritization shall be irrevocable. Any lands 
    selected shall remain withdrawn until conveyed or full entitlement 
    has been achieved.
        ``(B) The selection filed by Elim pursuant to this subsection 
    shall be subject to valid existing rights and may not supercede 
    prior selections of the State of Alaska, any Native corporation, or 
    valid entries of any private individual unless such selection or 
    entry is relinquished, rejected, or abandoned prior to conveyance 
    to Elim.
        ``(C) Upon receipt of the Conveyance Lands, Elim shall have all 
    legal rights and privileges as landowner, subject only to the 
    covenants, reservations, terms and conditions specified in this 
    subsection.
        ``(D) Selection by Elim of lands under this subsection and 
    final conveyance of those lands to Elim shall constitute full 
    satisfaction of any claim of entitlement of Elim with respect to 
    its land entitlement.
    ``(4) Covenants, Reservations, Terms and Conditions.--The 
covenants, reservations, terms and conditions set forth in this 
paragraph and in paragraphs (5) and (6) with respect to the Conveyance 
Lands shall run with the land and shall be incorporated into the 
interim conveyance, if any, and patent conveying the lands to Elim.
        ``(A) Consistent with paragraph (3)(C) and subject to the 
    applicable covenants, reservations, terms and conditions contained 
    in this paragraph and paragraphs (5) and (6), Elim shall have all 
    rights to the timber resources of the Conveyance Lands for any use 
    including, but not limited to, construction of homes, cabins, for 
    firewood and other domestic uses on any Elim lands: Provided, That 
    cutting and removal of Merchantable Timber from the Conveyance 
    Lands for sale shall not be permitted: Provided further, That Elim 
    shall not construct roads and related infrastructure for the 
    support of such cutting and removal of timber for sale or permit 
    others to do so. `Merchantable Timber' means timber that can be 
    harvested and marketed by a prudent operator.
        ``(B) Public Land Order 5563 of December 16, 1975, which made 
    hot or medicinal springs available to other Native Corporations for 
    selection and conveyance, is hereby modified to the extent 
    necessary to permit the selection by Elim of the lands heretofore 
    encompassed in any withdrawal of hot or medicinal springs and is 
    withdrawn pursuant to this subsection. The Secretary is authorized 
    and directed to convey such selections of hot or medicinal springs 
    (hereinafter referred to as `hot springs') subject to applicable 
    covenants, reservations, terms and conditions contained in 
    paragraphs (5) and (6).
        ``(C) Should Elim select and have conveyed to it lands 
    encompassing portions of the Tubutulik River or Clear Creek, or 
    both, Elim shall not permit surface occupancy or knowingly permit 
    any other activity on those portions of land lying within the bed 
    of or within 300 feet of the ordinary high waterline of either or 
    both of these water courses for purposes associated with mineral or 
    other development or activity if they would cause or are likely to 
    cause erosion or siltation of either water course to an extent that 
    would significantly adversely impact water quality or fish habitat.
    ``(5) Rights Retained by the United States.--With respect to 
conveyances authorized in paragraph (3), the following rights are 
retained by the United States:
        ``(A) To enter upon the conveyance lands, after providing 
    reasonable advance notice in writing to Elim and after providing 
    Elim with an opportunity to have a representative present upon such 
    entry, in order to achieve the purpose and enforce the terms of 
    this paragraph and paragraphs (4) and (6).
        ``(B) To have, in addition to such rights held by Elim, all 
    rights and remedies available against persons, jointly or 
    severally, who cut or remove Merchantable Timber for sale.
        ``(C) In cooperation with Elim, the right, but not the 
    obligation, to reforest in the event previously existing 
    Merchantable Timber is destroyed by fire, wind, insects, disease, 
    or other similar manmade or natural occurrence (excluding manmade 
    occurrences resulting from the exercise by Elim of its lawful 
    rights to use the Conveyance Lands).
        ``(D) The right of ingress and egress over easements under 
    section 17(b) for the public to visit, for noncommercial purposes, 
    hot springs located on the Conveyance Lands and to use any part of 
    the hot springs that is not commercially developed.
        ``(E) The right to enter upon the lands containing hot springs 
    for the purpose of conducting scientific research on such hot 
    springs and to use the results of such research without 
    compensation to Elim. Elim shall have an equal right to conduct 
    research on the hot springs and to use the results of such research 
    without compensation to the United States.
        ``(F) A covenant that commercial development of the hot springs 
    by Elim or its successors, assigns, or grantees shall include the 
    right to develop only a maximum of 15 percent of the hot springs 
    and any land within \1/4\ mile of the hot springs. Such commercial 
    development shall not alter the natural hydrologic or thermal 
    system associated with the hot springs. Not less than 85 percent of 
    the lands within \1/4\ mile of the hot springs shall be left in 
    their natural state.
        ``(G) The right to exercise prosecutorial discretion in the 
    enforcement of any covenant, reservation, term or condition shall 
    not waive the right to enforce any covenant, reservation, term or 
    condition.
    ``(6) General.--
        ``(A) Memorandum of understanding.--The Secretary and Elim 
    shall, acting in good faith, enter into a Memorandum of 
    Understanding (hereinafter referred to as the `MOU') to implement 
    the provisions of this subsection. The MOU shall include among its 
    provisions reasonable measures to protect plants and animals in the 
    hot springs on the Conveyance Lands and on the land within \1/4\ 
    mile of the hot springs. The parties shall agree to meet 
    periodically to review the matters contained in the MOU and to 
    exercise their right to amend, replace, or extend the MOU. Such 
    reviews shall include the authority to relocate any of the 
    easements set forth in subparagraph (D) if the parties deem it 
    advisable.
        ``(B) Incorporation of terms.--Elim shall incorporate the 
    covenants, reservations, terms and conditions, in this subsection 
    in any deed or other legal instrument by which it divests itself of 
    any interest in all or a portion of the Conveyance Lands, including 
    without limitation, a leasehold interest.
        ``(C) Section 17(b) easements.--The Bureau of Land Management, 
    in consultation with Elim, shall reserve in the conveyance to Elim 
    easements to the United States pursuant to subsection 17(b) that 
    are not in conflict with other easements specified in this 
    paragraph.
        ``(D) Other easements.--The Bureau of Land Management, in 
    consultation with Elim, shall reserve easements which shall include 
    the right of the public to enter upon and travel along the 
    Tubutulik River and Clear Creek within the Conveyance Lands. Such 
    easements shall also include easements for trails confined to foot 
    travel along, and which may be established along each bank of, the 
    Tubutulik River and Clear Creek. Such trails shall be 25 feet wide 
    and upland of the ordinary high waterline of the water courses. The 
    trails may deviate from the banks as necessary to go around man-
    made or natural obstructions or to portage around hazardous 
    stretches of water. The easements shall also include one-acre sites 
    along the water courses at reasonable intervals, selected in 
    consultation with Elim, which may be used to launch or take out 
    water craft from the water courses and to camp in non-permanent 
    structures for a period not to exceed 24 hours without the consent 
    of Elim.
        ``(E) Inholders.--The owners of lands held within the exterior 
    boundaries of lands conveyed to Elim shall have all rights of 
    ingress and egress to be vested in the inholder and the inholder's 
    agents, employees, co-venturers, licensees, subsequent grantees, or 
    invitees, and such easements shall be reserved in the conveyance to 
    Elim. The inholder may not exercise the right of ingress and egress 
    in a manner that may result in substantial damage to the surface of 
    the lands or make any permanent improvements on Conveyance Lands 
    without the prior consent of Elim.
        ``(F) Iditarod trail.--The Bureau of Land Management may 
    reserve an easement for the Iditarod National Historic Trail in the 
    conveyance to Elim.
    ``(7) Implementation.--There are authorized to be appropriated such 
sums as may be necessary to implement this subsection.''.

SEC. 2. COMMON STOCK TO ADOPTED-OUT DESCENDANTS.

    Section 7(h)(1)(C)(iii) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act 
(43 U.S.C. 1606(h)(1)(C)(iii)) is amended by inserting before the 
period at the end the following: ``, notwithstanding an adoption, 
relinquishment, or termination of parental rights that may have altered 
or severed the legal relationship between the gift donor and 
recipient''.

SEC. 3. DEFINITION OF SETTLEMENT TRUST.

    Section 3(t)(2) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 
U.S.C. 1602(t)(2)) is amended by striking ``sole'' and all that follows 
through ``Stock'' and inserting ``benefit of shareholders, Natives, and 
descendants of Natives,''.

                               Speaker of the House of Representatives.

                            Vice President of the United States and    
                                               President of the Senate.

Pages: 1

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