H.R. 473: HALE Scouts Act

H.R. 473

HALE Scouts Act

Sen. Bernard Sanders

October 3, 2011 (112th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact

Floor Situation

On Monday, October 3, 2011, the House is scheduled to consider H.R. 473 under a suspension of the rules requiring a two-thirds majority vote for approval.  H.R. 473 was introduced by Rep. Dan Boren (D-OK) on January 26, 2011, and was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources, which reported the bill as amended on July 20, 2011, by unanimous consent.

Bill Summary

H.R. 473 would require the Secretary of Agriculture to convey (for fair market value) approximately 140 acres of land in the Ouachita National Forest in Oklahoma to the Indian Nations Council, Inc., of the Boy Scouts of America.  The bill would require the Council to pay fair market value for the land, as determined by an appraisal approved by the Secretary.  In addition, the Boy Scouts will pay for appraisals, surveys and other administrative costs occurred during the transaction.


According to House Report 112-218, “The Indian Nations Council Boy Scout Camp Tom Hale is currently on 480 acres located within the Ouachita National Forest. Since 1963, hundreds of thousands of Boy Scouts have camped at this site. H.R. 473 would direct the Agriculture Secretary to sell 140 acres of federal land adjacent to Camp Hale to the Council. The legislation also requires that the land be appraised in conformity with the Uniform Appraisal Standards for Federal Land Acquisitions and shall be sold for market value. These additional acres will allow the Boy Scouts to accommodate more campers and allow a larger array of activities at the camp.” 


CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 473 “would have no significant impact on the federal budget.”  CBO estimates that the proceeds from the sale would be less than $300,000, which would be deposited into the Treasury as an offsetting receipt.