43 U.S. Code § 869 - Disposal of lands for public or recreational purposes
The Secretary of the Interior upon application filed by a duly qualified applicant under section 869–1 of this title may, in the manner prescribed by sections 869 to 869–4 of this title, dispose of any public lands to a State, Territory, county, municipality, or other State, Territorial, or Federal instrumentality or political subdivision for any public purposes, or to a nonprofit corporation or nonprofit association for any recreational or any public purpose consistent with its articles of incorporation or other creating authority. Before the land may be disposed of under sections 869 to 869–4 of this title it must be shown to the satisfaction of the Secretary that the land is to be used for an established or definitely proposed project, that the land involved is not of national significance nor more than is reasonably necessary for the proposed use, and that for proposals of over 640 acres comprehensive land use plans and zoning regulations applicable to the area in which the public lands to be disposed of are located have been adopted by the appropriate State or local authority. The Secretary shall provide an opportunity for participation by affected citizens in disposals under sections 869 to 869–4 of this title, including public hearings or meetings where he deems it appropriate to provide public comments, and shall hold at least one public meeting on any proposed disposal of more than six hundred forty acres under sections 869 to 869–4 of this title. The Secretary may classify public lands in Alaska for disposition under sections 869 to 869–4 of this title. Lands so classified may not be appropriated under any other public land law unless the Secretary revises such classification or authorizes the disposition of an interest in the lands under other applicable law. If, within eighteen months following such classification, no application has been filed for the purpose for which the lands have been so classified, then the Secretary shall restore such lands to appropriation under the applicable public land laws.
Where the lands have been withdrawn in aid of a function of a Federal department or agency other than the Department of the Interior, or of a State, Territory, county, municipality, water district, or other local governmental subdivision or agency, the Secretary of the Interior may make disposals under sections 869 to 869–4 of this title only with the consent of such Federal department or agency, or of such State, Territory, or local governmental unit. Nothing in sections 869 to 869–4 of this title shall be construed to apply to lands in any national forest, national park, or national monument, or national wildlife refuge, or to any Indian lands or lands set aside or held for the use or benefit of Indians, including lands over which jurisdiction has been transferred to the Department of the Interior by Executive order for the use of Indians, or, except insofar as sections 869 to 869–4 of this title apply to leases of land to States and counties and to State and Federal instrumentalities and political subdivisions and to municipal corporations, to the revested Oregon and California Railroad grant lands and the reconveyed Coos Bay Wagon Road grant lands in the State of Oregon. Nor shall any disposition be made under sections 869 to 869–4 of this title for any use authorized under any other law, except for a use authorized under sections 682a to 682e  of this title.
 See References in Text note below.
1976—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 94–579, § 212(a), inserted provisions requiring lands proposed to be disposed not to be of national significance nor more than reasonably necessary for the proposed use, provisions relating to proposals of over 640 acres, and provisions relating to participation by affected individuals.
Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 94–579, § 212(b), in cl. (A) inserted reference to State political subdivision and struck out limitation of three sites, limitation of six sites for calendar years 1960, 1961, and 1962, and proviso for additional sites where conveyances in one year did not meet the authorized number, in cl. (B) substituted “nonprofit corporation or nonprofit association” for “political subdivision of a State”, and in cl. (C) substituted provisions relating to authorization for a calendar year, for provisions authorizing six hundred and forty acres to any nonprofit corporation or association.
1960—Subsec. (b)(i)(A). Pub. L. 86–755 inserted “or the State park agency or any other agency having jurisdiction over the State park system of said State designated by the Governor of that State as its sole representative for acceptance of lands under this provision,” after “State” and inserted proviso.
1959—Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 86–292 substituted acreage limitations making special allowances to States for recreational areas for provision which limited conveyance to 640 acres to any one grantee in any one calendar year.
Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 86–66 substituted provisions making sections 869 to 869–4 of this title inapplicable, except insofar as those sections apply to leases of land to States and counties and to State and Federal instrumentalities and political subdivisions and to municipal corporations, to revested Oregon and California Railroad grant lands and reconveyed Coos Bay Wagon Road grant lands in the State of Oregon, for provisions which made those sections inapplicable to the revested Oregon and California Railroad grant lands and reconveyed Coos Bay Wagon Road grant lands.
1954—Act June 4, 1954, divided provisions of act June 14, 1926, on which this section is based, into separate sections (now set out as this section and sections 869–1 to 869–4 of this title), and changed provisions generally to broaden authority of Secretary of the Interior to dispose of public lands for public purposes (1) by including provisions for disposal thereof to Territories (including Alaska), other political subdivisions, and nonprofit corporations and associations rather than to States, counties, and municipalities only, (2) by permitting the disposal thereof for “public” purposes, rather than merely for “recreational” purposes as theretofore, (3) by striking out “nonmineral” in describing the lands which may be so disposed of, (4) by inserting limitation provisions set out in subsecs. (b) and (c) of this section, (5) by amending and transferring to section 2 of that act (section 869–1 of this title) provisions governing methods of, and conditions with respect to the, disposing of the lands for those purposes (see Prior Provisions note set out under section 869–1 of this title), including provision for the reservation of mineral deposits, (6) by amending and transferring to section 3 of that act (section 869–2 of this title) provisions with respect to reversion of the lands to the United States in certain cases (see Prior Provisions note set out under section 869–2 of this title), (7) by enacting, as section 4 of that act, provisions set out as section 869–3 of this title, and (8) by inserting provision in this section that disposals should be made “upon application by a duly qualified applicant” under section 869–1 of this title.
Act June 14, 1926, ch. 578, 44 Stat. 741, which enacted sections 869 to 869–4 of this title, is popularly known as the “Recreation and Public Purposes Act”.