Vol. VII, Laws     (Compiled from February 10, 1939 to January 13, 1971)

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Title 30.—Mineral Lands and Mining

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Chapter 7


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§ 351. Definitions.

As used in this chapter "United States" includes Alaska. "Acquired lands" or "lands acquired by the United States" include all lands heretofore or hereafter acquired by the United States to which the "mineral leasing laws" have not been extended, including such lands acquired under the provisions of sections 480, 500, 513 to 519, 521, 552, and 563 of Title 16. "Secretary" means the Secretary of the Interior. "Mineral leasing laws" shall mean the Act of October 20, 1914; the Act of February 25, 1920; the Act of April 17, 1926; the Act of February 7, 1927, and all Acts heretofore or hereafter enacted which are amendatory of or supplementary to any of the foregoing Acts. "Lease" includes "prospecting permit" unless the context otherwise requires. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 2, 61 Stat. 913.)

§ 352. Deposits subject to lease; consent of department heads; lands excluded.

Except where lands have been acquired by the United States for the development of the mineral deposits, by foreclosure or otherwise for resale, or reported as surplus pursuant to the provisions of

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the Surplus Property Act of 1944, all deposits of coal, phosphate, oil, oil shale, gas, sodium, potassium, and sulfur which are owned or may hereafter be acquired by the United States and which are within the lands acquired by the United States (exclusive of such deposits in such acquired lands as are (a) situated within incorporated cities, towns and villages, national parks or monuments, (b) set apart for military or naval purposes, or (c) tidelands or submerged lands) may be leased by the Secretary under the same conditions as contained in the leasing provisions of the mineral leasing laws, subject to the provisions hereof. The provisions of sections 271 to 276 of this title shall apply to deposits of sulfur covered by this chapter wherever situated. No mineral deposit covered by this section shall be leased except with the consent of the head of the executive department, independent establishment, or instrumentality having jurisdiction over the lands containing such deposit, or holding a mortgage or deed of trust secured by such lands which is unsatisfied of record, and subject to such conditions as that official may prescribe to insure the adequate utilization of the lands for the primary purposes for which they have been acquired or are being administered: Provided, That nothing in this chapter is intended, or shall be construed, to apply to or in any manner affect any mineral rights, exploration permits, leases or conveyances nor minerals that are or may be in any tidelands; or submerged lands; or in lands underlying the three mile zone or belt involved in the case of the United States of America against the State of California now pending on application for rehearing in the Supreme Court of the United States; or in lands underlying such three mile zone or belt, or the continental shelf, adjacent or littoral to any part of the land within the jurisdiction of the United States of America. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 3, 61 Stat. 914.)

§ 353. Sale of lands unaffected; reservation of mineral rights; sale subject to prior lease; naval petroleum reserves unaffected.

Nothing herein contained shall be deemed or construed to (a) amend, modify, or change any existing law authorizing or requiring the sale of acquired lands, or (b) empower any commission, bureau, or agency of the Government to make a reservation of the minerals in the sale of any acquired land: Provided, That any such sale or conveyance of lands shall be made by the agency having jurisdiction thereof, subject to any lease theretofore made, covering the mineral deposits underlying such lands: Provided further, That nothing in this chapter is intended, or shall be construed to affect in any manner any provision of the Act of June 30, 1938 (32 Stat. 1252), amending the Act of June 4, 1920 (41 Stat. 813). (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 4, 61 Stat. 914.)

§ 354. Lease of partial or future interests in deposits.

Where the United States does not own all of the mineral deposits under any lands sought to be leased and which are affected by this chapter, the Secretary is authorized to lease the interest of the United States in any such mineral deposits when, in the judgment of the Secretary, the public interest will be best served thereby; subject, however, to the provisions of section 352 of this title. Where the United States does not own any interest or owns less than a full interest in the minerals that may be produced from any lands sought to be leased, and which are or will be affected by this chapter and where, under the provisions of its acquisition, the United States is to acquire all or any part of such mineral deposits in the future, the Secretary may lease any interest of the United States then owned or to be acquired in the future in the same manner as provided in the preceding sentence. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 5, 61 Stat. 914.)

§ 355. Disposition of receipts.

All receipts derived from leases issued under the authority of this chapter shall be paid into the same funds or accounts in the Treasury and shall be distributed in the same manner as prescribed for other receipts from the lands affected by the lease, the intention of this provision being that this chapter shall not affect the distribution of receipts pursuant to legislation applicable to such lands: Provided, however, That receipts from leases or permits for minerals in lands set apart for Indian use, including lands the jurisdiction of which has been transferred to the Department of the Interior by the Executive order for Indian use, shall be deposited in a special fund in the Treasury until final disposition thereof by the Congress. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 6, 61 Stat. 915.)

§ 356. Furnishing description of lands and title documents; recordation of documents; authenticated copies.

Upon request by the Secretary, the heads of all executive departments, independent establishments, or instrumentalities having jurisdiction over any of the lands referred to in section 351 of this title shall furnish to the Secretary the legal description of all of such lands, and all pertinent abstracts, title papers, and other documents in the possession of such agencies concerning the status of the title of the United States to the mineral deposits that may be found in such lands.

Abstracts, title papers, and other documents furnished to the Secretary under this section shall be recorded promptly in the Bureau of Land Management in such form as the Secretary shall deem adequate for their preservation and use in the administration of this chapter, whereupon the originals shall be returned promptly to the agency from which they were received. Duly authenticated copies of any such abstracts, title papers, or other documents may, however, be furnished to the Secretary, in lieu of the originals, in the discretion of the agency concerned. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 7, 61 Stat. 915.)

§ 357. State or local government rights; taxation.

Nothing contained in this chapter shall be construed to affect the rights of the State or other local authorities to exercise any right which they may have with respect to properties covered by leases issued under this chapter, including the right to levy and collect taxes upon improvements, output of mines, or other rights, property, or assets of any lessee of the United States. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 8, 61 Stat. 915.)

§ 358. Rights under prior leases; priority of pending applications; exchange of leases.

Nothing in this chapter shall affect any rights acquired by any lessee of lands subject to this chapter under the law as it existed prior to August 7, 1947, and such rights shall be governed by the law in effect at the time of their acquisition; but any person qualified to hold a lease who, on August 7, 1947, had pending an application for an oil and gas lease for any lands subject to this chapter which on the date the application was filed was not situated within the known geologic

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structure of a producing oil or gas field, shall have a preference right over others to a lease of such lands without competitive bidding. Any person holding a lease on lands subject hereto, which lease was issued prior to August 7, 1947, shall be entitled to exchange such lease for a new lease issued under the provisions of this chapter, at any time prior to the expiration of such existing lease. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 9, 61 Stat. 915.)

§ 359. Rules and regulations.

The Secretary of the Interior is authorized to prescribe such rules and regulations as are necessary and appropriate to carry out the purposes of this chapter, which rules and regulations shall be the same as those prescribed under the mineral leasing laws to the extent that they are applicable. (Aug. 7, 1947, ch. 513, § 10, 61 Stat. 915.)

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