43 CFR 3436.1-1 - Qualified lease proponents.
(a) Coal lease exchanges under this program shall be available only to persons who:
(1) Hold a Federal coal lease or preference right lease application covering lands that include or are near an alluvial valley floor located west of the 100th Meridian, west longitude, where surface coal mining operations are prohibited by section 510(b)(5) of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act because such operations would interrupt farming or materially damage the quantity and quality of the water in surface or underground water systems that would supply the alluvial valley floor;
(2) Have made substantial financial and legal commitments prior to January 1, 1977, in connection with the lease or preference right lease application; and
(3) Are not entitled to continue any existing surface coal mining operations pursuant to the first proviso of section 510(b)(5) of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act.
(b) Persons seeking an exchange bear the burden of establishing that they are qualified pursuant to paragraph (a) of this section. The Secretary shall accept a determination made pursuant to 30 CFR 785.19(c) as conclusive evidence of the existence of an alluvial valley floor.