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GAO scrutinizes BLM land purchases

PUBLIC LANDS  This initial brief report, which just moved on the Associated Press wire, may be of particular interest in Washington, where BLM has consolidated its land holdings into several large acreages popular with sportsmen on the East Side of the state.

Here's all there is to the story so far:

LOS ANGELES -- Government officials say the U.S. Bureau of Land Management has mishandled a mandate to exchange land with the states of California and Washington.

The Government Accountability Office report released Monday says the BLM has been selling some properties and purchasing others, rather than completing the straightforward trades they’re permitted to perform.

It says that doing so circumvented the U.S. Congress’ authority, since it bought land outside of Congress’ appropriations process.

The GAO also says the agency may have missed out on revenue by directly selling land to interested buyers instead of putting it out to competitive bid.

A BLM spokesman did not immediately return a phone call from The Associated Press seeking comment.




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Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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