< Back to S. 537 (104th Congress, 1995–1996)

Text of the A bill to amend the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, and for other purposes.

This bill was introduced on March 10, 1995, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Mar 10, 1995 (Introduced).

Source: GPO

S 537 IS

104th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 537

To amend the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, and for other purposes.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 10 (legislative day, MARCH 6), 1995

Mr. MURKOWSKI (for himself and Mr. STEVENS) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources


A BILL

To amend the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. RATIFICATION OF CERTAIN CASWELL AND MONTANA CREEK NATIVE ASSOCIATIONS CONVEYANCES.

    The conveyance of approximately 11,520 acres to Montana Creek Native Association, Inc., and the conveyance of approximately 11,520 acres to Caswell Native Association, Inc., by Cook Inlet Region, Inc. in fulfillment of the agreement of February 3, 1976, and subsequent letter agreement of March 26, 1982, among the 3 parties are hereby adopted and ratified as a matter of Federal law. The conveyances shall be deemed to be conveyances pursuant to section 14(h)(2) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1613(h)(2)). The group corporations for Montana Creek and Caswell are hereby declared to have received their full entitlement and shall not be entitled to receive any additional lands under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act. The ratification of these conveyances shall not have any effect on section 14(h) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1613(h)) or upon the duties and obligations of the United States to any Alaska Native Corporation. This ratification shall not be for any claim to land or money by the Caswell or Montana Creek group corporations or any other Alaska Native Corporation against the State of Alaska, the United States, or Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated.

SEC. 2. MINING CLAIMS ON LANDS CONVEYED TO ALASKA REGIONAL CORPORATIONS.

    Section 22(c) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1621(c)) is amended by adding at the end the following:

      ‘(3) This section shall apply to lands conveyed by interim conveyance or patent to a regional corporation pursuant to this Act which are made subject to a mining claim or claims located under the general mining laws, including lands conveyed prior to enactment of this paragraph. Effective upon the date of enactment of this paragraph, the Secretary, acting through the Bureau of Land Management and in a manner consistent with section 14(g), shall transfer to the regional corporation administration of all mining claims determined to be entirely within lands conveyed to that corporation. Any person holding such mining claim or claims shall meet such requirements of the general mining laws and section 314 of the Federal Land Management and Policy Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1744), except that any filings that would have been made with the Bureau of Land Management if the lands were within Federal ownership shall be timely made with the appropriate regional corporation. The validity of any such mining claim or claims may be contested by the regional corporation, in place of the United States. All contest proceedings and appeals by the mining claimants of adverse decision made by the regional corporation shall be brought in Federal District Court for the District of Alaska. Neither the United States nor any Federal agency or official shall be named or joined as a party in such proceedings or appeals. All revenues from such mining claims received after passage of this paragraph shall be remitted to the regional corporation subject to distribution pursuant to section 7(i) of this Act, except that in the event that the mining claim or claims are not totally within the lands conveyed to the regional corporation, the regional corporation shall be entitled only to that proportion of revenues, other than administrative fees, reasonably allocated to the portion of the mining claim so conveyed.’.

SEC. 3. SETTLEMENT OF CLAIMS ARISING FROM HAZARDOUS SUBSTANCE CONTAMINATION OF TRANSFERRED LANDS.

    The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following:

‘CLAIMS ARISING FROM CONTAMINATION OF TRANSFERRED LANDS

    ‘SEC. 40. (a) As used in this section--

      ‘(1) the term ‘contaminant’ means hazardous substance harmful to public health or the environment, including asbestos; and

      ‘(2) the term ‘land’ means real property transferred to an Alaska Native Corporation pursuant to this Act.

    ‘(b) Within 18 months of enactment of this section, and after consultation with the Secretary of Agriculture, State of Alaska, and appropriate Alaska Native corporations and organizations, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate, a report addressing issues presented by the presence of hazardous substances on lands conveyed or prioritized for conveyance to such corporations pursuant to this Act. Such report shall consist of--

      ‘(1) existing information concerning the nature and types of contaminants present on such lands prior to conveyance to Alaska Native corporations;

      ‘(2) existing information identifying the existence and availability of potentially responsible parties for the

removal or amelioration of the effects of such contaminants;

      ‘(3) identification of existing remedies; and

      ‘(4) recommendations for any additional legislation that the Secretary concludes is necessary to remedy the problem of contaminants on the lands.’.

SEC. 4. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE PURPOSES OF IMPLEMENTING REQUIRED RECONVEYANCES.

    Section 14(c) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1613(c)) is amended by adding at the end the following:

    ‘There is authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary for the purpose of providing technical assistance to Village Corporations established pursuant to this Act in order that they may fulfill the reconveyance requirements of section 14(c) of this Act. The Secretary may make funds available as grants to ANCSA or nonprofit corporations that maintain in-house land planning and management capabilities.’.

SEC. 5. NATIVE ALLOTMENTS.

    Section 1431(o) of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (94 Stat. 2542) is amended by adding at the end the following:

      ‘(5) Following the exercise by Arctic Slope Regional Corporation of its option under paragraph (1) to acquire the subsurface estate beneath lands within the National Petroleum Reserve--Alaska selected by Kuukpik Corporation, where such subsurface estate entirely surrounds lands subject to a Native allotment application approved under 905 of this Act, and the oil and gas in such lands have been reserved to the United States, Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, at its further option and subject to the concurrence of Kuukpik Corporation, shall be entitled to receive a conveyance of the reserved oil and gas, including all rights and privileges therein reserved to the United States, in such lands. Upon the receipt of a conveyance of such oil and gas interests, the entitlement of Arctic Slope Regional Corporation to in-lieu subsurface lands under section 12(a)(1) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (43 U.S.C. 1611(a)(1)) shall be reduced by the amount of acreage determined by the Secretary to be conveyed to Arctic Slope Regional Corporation pursuant to this paragraph.’.

SEC. 6. REPORT CONCERNING OPEN SEASON FOR CERTAIN NATIVE ALASKA VETERANS FOR ALLOTMENTS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- No later than 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of the Interior, in consultation with the Secretary of Agriculture, the State of Alaska and appropriate Native corporations and organizations, shall submit to the Committee on Resources of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources of the Senate a report which shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

      (1) The number of Vietnam era veterans, as defined in section 101 of title 38, United States Code, who were eligible for but did not apply for an allotment of not to exceed 160 acres under the Act of May 17, 1906 (chapter 2469, 34 Stat. 197), as the Act was in effect before December 18, 1971.

      (2) An assessment of the potential impacts of additional allotments on conservation system units as that term is defined in section 102(4) of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (94 Stat. 2375).

      (3) Recommendations for any additional legislation that the Secretary concludes is necessary.

    (b) REQUIREMENT- The Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall release to the Secretary of the Interior information relevant to the report required under subsection (a).

SEC. 7. TRANSFER OF WRANGELL INSTITUTE.

    (a) PROPERTY TRANSFER- Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated, is authorized to transfer to the United States and the General Services Administration shall accept an approximately 10-acre site of the Wrangell Institute in Wrangell, Alaska, and the

structures contained thereon.

    (b) RESTORATION OF PROPERTY CREDITS-

      (1) IN GENERAL- In exchange for the land and structures transferred under subsection (a), property bidding credits in the total amount of $382,305, shall be restored to the Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated, property account in the Treasury established under section 12(b) of the Act of January 2, 1976 (Public Law 94-204; 43 U.S.C. 1611 note), referred to in such section as the ‘Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated, property account’. Such property bidding credits shall be used in the same fiscal year as they are received by Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated.

      (2) HOLD HARMLESS- The United States shall defend and hold harmless Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated, and its subsidiaries in any and all claims arising from Federal or Cook Inlet Region, Incorporated, ownership of the land and structures prior to their return to the United States.

SEC. 8. SHISHMAREF AIRPORT AMENDMENT.

    The Shishmaref Airport, conveyed to the State of Alaska on January 5, 1967, in Patent No. 1240529, is subject to reversion to the United States, pursuant to the terms of that patent for nonuse as an airport. The Secretary is authorized to reacquire the interests originally conveyed pursuant to Patent No. 1240529, and, notwithstanding any other provision of law, shall immediately thereafter transfer all right, title, and interest of the United States in the subject lands to the Shishmaref Native Corporation. Nothing in this section shall relieve the State, the United States, or any other potentially responsible party of liability, if any, under existing law for the cleanup of hazardous or solid wastes on the property, nor shall the United States or Shishmaref Native Corporation become liable for the cleanup of the property solely by virtue of acquiring title from the State of Alaska or from the United States.