|Committee||Energy and Natural Resources|
|Date||September 10, 2013 (113th Congress, 1st Session)|
|Staff Contact||David Smentek|
On Tuesday, September 10, 2013, the House will consider S. 304, the Natchez Trace Parkway Land Conveyance Act of 2013, under a suspension of the rules. The bill was introduced in the Senate on February 13, 2013 by Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS). The bill was passed in the Senate by unanimous consent. S. 304 was referred to the House Committee on Natural Resources, which ordered the bill reported by unanimous consent.
S. 304 requires the Secretary of the Interior to convey back to the State of Mississippi, by quitclaim deed and without consideration, all right, title, and interest of the United States in two parcels of land, which total approximately 67 acres. S. 304 would authorize the transfer of 67 acres of identified unused Federal land back to the State, and adjust the boundary of the Natchez Trace Parkway to exclude the conveyed land and include 10 acres of lands already managed by the National Park Service.
The Natchez Trace Parkway is a National Park Service (NPS) unit, which stretches 444 miles from Nashville, Tennessee to Natchez, Mississippi. The Parkway commemorates the Old Natchez Trace, a path created and used by Native Americans for centuries. The construction of the Parkway was authorized in 1938 and began in 1939 as a project of the Civilian Conservation Corps. The route has been overseen by the National Park Service since its inception.
The Parkway’s southern terminus in Natchez, Mississippi, was the final section of the Parkway constructed and completed in 2005. For years prior to its completion, it was uncertain where the Parkway would terminate. The State of Mississippi acquired and donated two different parcels of land to the NPS to accommodate a variety of possible construction alternatives. After the Parkway's completion, the land acquired for those alternate termination points remained unused by NPS. The unused property includes two parcels: the Bean field and the Feltus property, 38 and 29 acres respectively. The City of Natchez wishes to develop the Bean field parcel as a recreational complex, and NPS seeks to return the unused parcels back to the State.
The CBO estimates that this legislation would have no significant impact on the federal budget.
For questions or further information contact the GOP Conference at 5-5107.