Bill description: This bill prohibits the government from increasing its percentage of land ownership in the state.
Analyst’s note: The proposed Section 67-8401(1) says: “The federal government administers approximately sixty-three percent (63%) of the land in Idaho, while state, county, municipal and other governments own or administer approximately seven percent (7%) of Idaho land. Therefore, it is incumbent that Idaho preserves and protects the remaining thirty percent (30%) of land that is in private ownership. To this end, it is hereby declared the policy of the state of Idaho that there shall be no net loss of private property within the state.”
Does it transfer a function of the private sector to the government? Examples include government ownership or control of any providers of goods or services such as the Land Board’s purchase of a self-storage facility, mandatory emissions testing, or pre-kindergarten. Conversely, does it eliminate a function of government or return a function of government to the private sector?
Preventing the state from purchasing additional land would prevent the government from expanding its role as government land manager. The state could still take on new projects that might limit land usage by the private sector, but only if the state returns the function of an equal amount of state-owned land to Idahoans. This would limit the ability of the state to take away private functions for its own purpose. (+1)
Does it in any way restrict public access to information related to government activity or otherwise compromise government transparency or accountability? Conversely, does it increase public access to information related to government activity or increase government transparency or accountability?
Subsection (3) of the proposed text would require any agency to get the permission of county commissions for any large land purchase. This would prevent the state from upholding other regulations in this bill by selling large swaths of land in one county and buying in another. County commissioners ought to hold the state accountable for the impacts of these land purchases. (+1)