AV, Barstow, Victorville & 29 Palms In For A Land Windfall Under Federal Bill

U.S. Congressman Jay Obernolte (R-Hesperia) introduced House Resolution 5355, the Desert Community Lands Act, on September 23, which if passed into law would convey approximately 8,200 surface acres of land owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to the Town of Apple Valley and the cities of Twentynine Palms, Barstow, and Victorville. The conveyances would be at no cost and will give these communities at present landlocked by federal land increased space and control over their surroundings.
“Currently, over 90 percent of the land mass in California’s 8th District is owned by government agencies,” said Obernolte. “As a result, many of our small communities face problems ranging from a lack of control over recreational opportunities to growing pains resulting from a lack of space, including housing, traffic congestion, insufficient wastewater treatment, and lagging development. This bill would bring control of local lands back to our communities so the needs of our citizens can be met.”
Under House Resolution 5355, the Bureau of Land Management is to convey approximately 3,200 acres to Victorville, land located either within the city limits or its sphere of influence within one year of enactment.
Apple Valley would receive roughly 4,630 surface acres of BLM-managed land located north and east of the town center to be managed as the Apple Valley Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area. This conveyance would occur within five years of the bill’s enactment.
Within one year of enactment, Barstow would be given approximately 320 surface acres of BLM-managed land located entirely within the incorporated city limits and adjacent to the I-15 Freeway..
Twentynine Palms is to receive approximately 80 surface acres east of the city within one year to allow for more publicly accessible race events at the Twentynine Palms Motorsports Arena, host to the annual Hilltoppers Motorcycle Club Grand Prix and its 6,200 attendees.

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