2001 US Code
Title 40 - PUBLIC BUILDINGS, PROPERTY, AND WORKS
CHAPTER 3 - PUBLIC BUILDINGS AND WORKS GENERALLY
Sec. 255 - Approval of title prior to Federal land purchases; payment of title expenses; application to Tennessee Valley Authority; Federal jurisdiction over acquisitions

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Publication TitleUnited States Code, 2000 Edition, Supplement 1, Title 40 - PUBLIC BUILDINGS, PROPERTY, AND WORKS
CategoryBills and Statutes
CollectionUnited States Code
SuDoc Class NumberY 1.2/5:
Contained WithinTitle 40 - PUBLIC BUILDINGS, PROPERTY, AND WORKS
CHAPTER 3 - PUBLIC BUILDINGS AND WORKS GENERALLY
Sec. 255 - Approval of title prior to Federal land purchases; payment of title expenses; application to Tennessee Valley Authority; Federal jurisdiction over acquisitions
Containssection 255
Date2001
Laws in Effect as of DateJanuary 22, 2002
Positive LawNo
Dispositionstandard
Source CreditR.S. §355; June 28, 1930, ch. 710, 46 Stat. 828; Feb. 1, 1940, ch. 18, 54 Stat. 19; Oct. 9, 1940, ch. 793, 54 Stat. 1083; Pub. L. 91-393, §1, Sept. 1, 1970, 84 Stat. 835.
Statutes at Large References5 Stat. 468
46 Stat. 828
54 Stat. 19, 1083
84 Stat. 835
Public Law ReferencesPublic Law 91-393


§255. Approval of title prior to Federal land purchases; payment of title expenses; application to Tennessee Valley Authority; Federal jurisdiction over acquisitions

Unless the Attorney General gives prior written approval of the sufficiency of the title to land for the purpose for which the property is being acquired by the United States, public money may not be expended for the purchase of the land or any interest therein.

The Attorney General may delegate his responsibility under this section to other departments and agencies, subject to his general supervision and in accordance with regulations promulgated by him.

Any Federal department or agency which has been delegated the responsibility to approve land titles under this section may request the Attorney General to render his opinion as to the validity of the title to any real property or interest therein, or may request the advice or assistance of the Attorney General in connection with determinations as to the sufficiency of titles.

Except where otherwise authorized by law or provided by contract, the expenses of procuring certificates of titles or other evidences of title as the Attorney General may require may be paid out of the appropriations for the acquisition of land or out of the appropriations made for the contingencies of the acquiring department or agency.

The foregoing provisions of this section shall not be construed to affect in any manner any existing provisions of law which are applicable to the acquisition of lands or interests in land by the Tennessee Valley Authority.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the obtaining of exclusive jurisdiction in the United States over lands or interests therein which have been or shall hereafter be acquired by it shall not be required; but the head or other authorized officer of any department or independent establishment or agency of the Government may, in such cases and at such times as he may deem desirable, accept or secure from the State in which any lands or interests therein under his immediate jurisdiction, custody, or control are situated, consent to or cession of such jurisdiction, exclusive or partial, not theretofore obtained, over any such lands or interests as he may deem desirable and indicate acceptance of such jurisdiction on behalf of the United States by filing a notice of such acceptance with the Governor of such State or in such other manner as may be prescribed by the laws of the State where such lands are situated. Unless and until the United States has accepted jurisdiction over lands hereafter to be acquired as aforesaid, it shall be conclusively presumed that no such jurisdiction has been accepted.

(R.S. §355; June 28, 1930, ch. 710, 46 Stat. 828; Feb. 1, 1940, ch. 18, 54 Stat. 19; Oct. 9, 1940, ch. 793, 54 Stat. 1083; Pub. L. 91–393, §1, Sept. 1, 1970, 84 Stat. 835.)

Codification

R.S. §355 derived from Res. Sept. 11, 1841, No. 6, 5 Stat. 468.

The first four and sixth paragraphs of this section are based on R.S. §355, as amended. The fifth paragraph of this section is based on the last paragraph of section 1 of Pub. L. 91–393. For amendment of this section by the remainder of section 1 of Pub. L. 91–393, see 1970 Amendment note below.

Amendments

1970—Pub. L. 91–393 substituted first four paragraphs of this section, requiring the Attorney General to give written approval of the sufficiency of title prior to the purchase of lands or interests therein, empowering the Attorney General to delegate his responsibilities, authorizing Federal departments and agencies which have been delegated the responsibility to approve land titles to request opinions, advice or assistance of the Attorney General, and permitting the payment from appropriations of the expenses of procuring certificates or other evidences of title, for the former first seven paragraphs of this section which prohibited expenditures of public money upon any site or land purchased by the United States until the Attorney General gave his written opinion in favor of the validity of title, permitted acceptance of title subject to infirmities if the Attorney General approved, authorized the Attorney General to approve title to easements or rights-of-way, and which made certain exceptions from the provisions of this section.

1940—Act Oct. 9, 1940, among other changes, divided section into paragraphs, struck out provision requiring United States attorneys, upon application of Attorney General, to furnish assistance in relation to titles, and inserted provisions contained in second, third, fourth and seventh paragraphs.

Act Feb. 1, 1940, struck out provision requiring consent of State legislature to the purchase, and inserted provisions now set out as eighth paragraph.

1930—Act June 28, 1930, inserted reference to armories, arsenals, forts, fortifications, navy yards and lighthouses, and provision that the Attorney General may base his opinion as to title upon certificate of title of a title company.

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 356 of this title; title 7 section 2250a; title 10 sections 2852, 18239; title 16 sections 343b, 430a, 441i, 571c; title 22 section 1471; title 36 section 2103; title 38 section 115; title 42 sections 1502, 1594a, 2224, 5196; title 50 App. section 460.


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