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H.R. 1177: Removing Outdated Restrictions to Allow for Job Growth Act

H.R. 1177 directs the Secretary of Agriculture to remove a deed restriction on land that was conveyed from the federal government to the city of Old Town, Maine so that the city can move forward with economic development plans that would, purportedly, create 175 new jobs.

The Bankhead-Jones Farm Tenant Act authorizes the federal government to acquire damaged lands for the purpose of rehabilitating the space for various programs, mostly related to farming. Some of the land purchased was in Old Town, Maine. In the early 1980’s, this land in Old Town was sold to be used as part of the Old Town Airport with the stipulation that it be used strictly for that purpose, due to requirements in law under the Farm Tenant Act.

Recently, officials in Old Town expressed interest in developing portions of the land adjacent to the airport for commercial use to attract businesses. However, antiquated restrictions on the deed would prevent the site from being used for these businesses. H.R. 1177 would effectively remove such restrictions.

Last updated May 18, 2017. Source: Republican Policy Committee

The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on May 17, 2017.


(This measure has not been amended since it was introduced. The expanded summary of the House reported version is repeated here.)

Removing Outdated Restrictions to Allow for Job Growth Act

(Sec. 2) This bill directs the Department of Agriculture, if requested in writing by the city of Old Town, Maine, to release, convey, and quitclaim to the city, without monetary consideration, all rights, title, and interest of the United States in and to lands that: (1) were conveyed by the federal government to the city under the Bankhead-Jones Farm Tenant Act by the deed dated June 5, 1941, and (2) are proposed for conveyance by the city for the purpose of economic development.