STATEMENT from Jessica Goad, Advocacy Director at the Center for Western Priorities, on the American Legislative Exchange Council’s new report advocating for the state seizure of America’s public lands:

“Once again, the American Legislative Exchange Council is trying to lead state legislatures down a futile path by promoting the costly idea of giving away our American lands. The notion was extremely unpopular when ALEC first issued its ‘model legislation’ on the subject in 2012, and it is even more unpopular today. Americans see through ALEC’s privatization agenda, and know that our national forests and public lands are one of our country’s greatest assets.”

For more information, please see:

  • A debunking of ALEC’s erroneous claim that states are better land managers.
  • An explanation of how land seizure bills failed in state capitols this year.
  • An analysis of how state management of public lands would have negative impacts on access for users including ranchers, sportsmen, skiers, and oil and gas drillers.
  • Polling demonstrating that 52 percent of voters in the West oppose transferring American public lands to the states and 68 percent of voters view public lands within their states as belonging to all Americans, not just residents of the state.
  • The American Constitution Society’s analysis of the constitutionality of land transfers determining that “states have no constitutional power to force federal land transfers.”
  • A description of how proponents of land transfers—including some highlighted in the ALEC report—have connections to extremist groups like the Oath Keepers militia and county supremacy activists.
Written by on Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015