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H.R. 2181 (116th): Chaco Cultural Heritage Area Protection Act of 2019

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Oct 30, 2019.

Chaco Cultural Heritage Area Protection Act of 2019

This bill withdraws any federal lands and interests that are within the boundaries of the Chaco Cultural Heritage Withdrawal Area and any land or interest located in such area which is acquired by the United States after enactment of this bill from

entry, appropriation, and disposal under the public land laws; location, entry, and patent under the mining laws; and operation of the mineral leasing, mineral materials, and geothermal leasing laws. The Department of the Interior may convey the federal lands to, or exchange such lands with, an Indian tribe in accordance with an approved resource management plan.

Certain oil and gas leases for federal lands on which drilling options have not started before the end of the primary term of the applicable lease and that are not producing oil or gas in paying quantities

must terminate by operation of law pursuant to the Mineral Leasing Act and federal regulations, and may not be extended by Interior. Any portion of federal land subject to such a lease that has been terminated, relinquished, or acquired by the United States shall also be withdrawn as described above.