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

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Public Law 91-550
December 15, 1970 | [H. R. 471] 84 Stat. 1437

To amend section 4 of the Act of May 31, 1933 (48 Stat. 108).

Margin Notes
Public Law 91-550 Indians. Pueblo de Taos Tribe, N. Mex. Lands in trust.
Public Law 91-550 1438
Public Law 91-550 78 Stat. 891.
16 U. S. C. 1132.
Public Law 91-550 Land usage, limitation.
Public Law 91-550 Wilderness.
Public Law 91-550 16 U. S. C. 1131.
Public Law 91-550 1439 Conservation responsibility of Interior Secretary.
Public Law 91-550 Leases or permits, renewal, relinquishment. 48 Stat. 108.
Public Law 91-550 25 U. S. C. 70a.
Public Law 91-550 Water rights.

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Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That section 4 of the Act of May 31, 1933 (48 Stat. 108), providing for the protection of the watershed within the Carson National Forest for the Pueblo de Taos Indians in New Mexico, be and hereby is amended to read as follows:

"SEC. 4. (a) That, for the purpose of safeguarding the interests and welfare of the tribe of Indians known as the Pueblo de Taos of New Mexico, the following described lands and improvements thereon, upon which said Indians depend and have depended since time immemorial for water supply, forage for their domestic livestock, wood and timber for their personal use, and as the scene of certain religious ceremonials, are hereby declared to be held by the United States in trust for the Pueblo de Taos:

"Beginning at the southeast corner of the Tenorio tract on the north boundary of the Taos Pueblo grant in section 22, township 26 north, range 13 east;

"thence northwesterly and northeasterly along the east boundary of the Tenorio tract to the point where it intersects the boundary of the Lucero de Godoi or Antonio Martinez Grant;

"thence following the boundary of the Lucero de Godoi Grant northeasterly, southeasterly and northerly to station 76 on the east boundary of the survey of the Lucero de Godoi Grant according to the March 1894 survey by United States Deputy Surveyor John H. Walker as approved by the United States Surveyor's Office, Santa Fe, New Mexico, on November 23, 1894;

"thence east 0.85 mile along the south boundary of the Wheeler Peak Wilderness, according to the description dated July 1, 1965, and reported to Congress pursuant to section 3 (a) (1) of the Wilderness Act (Public Law 88-577);

"thence northeast approximately 0.25 mile to the top of an unnamed peak (which is approximately 0.38 mile southeasterly from Lew Wallace Peak);

"thence northwesterly 1.63 miles along the ridgetop through Lew Wallace Peak to Old Mike Peak;

"thence easterly and northeasterly along the ridgetop of the divide between the Red River and the Rio Pueblo de Taos to station numbered 109 of said 1894 survey, at the juncture of the divide with the west boundary of the Beaubien and Miranda Grant, New Mexico (commonly known as the Maxwell Grant), according to the official resurvey of said grant executed during July and August 1923 by United States Surveyor Glen Haste and approved by the General Land Office, Washington, District of Columbia, on April 28, 1926;

"thence southeasterly, southwesterly, and southerly along the west boundary of the Maxwell grant to the north line of unsurveyed section 33, township 26 north, range 15 east;

"thence southerly to the north boundary of fractional township 25 north, range 15 east;

"thence southerly and southwesterly through sections 4, 9, 8, and 7, township 25 north, range 15 east to the southwest corner of said section 7;

"thence westerly along the divide between the Rio Pueblo de

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Taos and Rio Fernando de Taos to the east boundary of the Taos Pueblo grant;

"thence north to the northeast corner of the Taos Pueblo grant;

"thence west to the point of beginning; containing approximately 48,000 acres, more or less.

"(b) The lands held in trust pursuant to this section shall be a part of the Pueblo de Taos Reservation, and shall be administered under the laws and regulations applicable to other trust Indian lands: Provided, That the Pueblo de Taos Indians shall use the lands for traditional purposes only, such as religious ceremonials, hunting and fishing, a source of water, forage for their domestic livestock, and wood, timber, and other natural resources for their personal use, all subject to such regulations for conservation purposes as the Secretary of the Interior may prescribe. Except for such uses, the lands shall remain forever wild and shall be maintained as a wilderness as defined in section 2 (c) of the Act of September 3, 1964 (78 Stat. 890). With the consent of the tribe, but not otherwise, nonmembers of the tribe may be permitted to enter the lands for purposes compatible with their preservation as a wilderness. The Secretary of the Interior shall be responsible for the establishment and maintenance of conservation measures for these lands, including, without limitation, protection of forests from fire, disease, insects or trespass; prevention or elimination of erosion, damaging land use, or stream pollution; and maintenance of streamflow and sanitary conditions; and the Secretary is authorized to contract with the Secretary of Agriculture for any services or materials deemed necessary to institute or carry out any of such measures.

"(c) Lessees or permittees of lands described in subsection (a) which are not included in the lands described in the Act of May 31, 1933, shall be given the opportunity to renew their leases or permits under rules and regulations of the Secretary of the Interior to the same extent and in the same manner that such leases or permits could have been renewed if this Act had not been enacted; but the Pueblo de Taos may obtain the relinquishment of any or all of such leases or permits from the lessees or permittees under such terms and conditions as may be mutually agreeable. The Secretary of the Interior is authorized to disburse, from the tribal funds in the Treasury of the United States to the credit of said tribe, so much thereof as may be necessary to pay for such relinquishments and for the purchase of any rights or improvements on said lands owned by non-Indians. The authority to pay for the relinquishment of a permit pursuant to this subsection shall not be regarded as a recognition of any property right of the permittee in the land or its resources.

"(d) The Indian Claims Commission is directed to determine in accordance with the provisions of section 2 of the Act of August 13, 1946 (60 Stat. 1049, 1050), the extent to which the value of the interest in land conveyed by this Act should be credited to the United States or should be set off against any claim of the Taos Indians against the United States.

"(e) Nothing in this section shall impair any vested water rights."

Approved, December 15, 1970.

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