Chief Sponsor: Rebecca P. Edwards

Senate Sponsor: Ann Millner


9     General Description:
10          This joint resolution supports the retention of public educators by directing revenue
11     generated from public lands towards a fund to increase educator salaries.
12     Highlighted Provisions:
13          This resolution:
14          ▸     recognizes the shortage of credentialed public educators in the state of Utah;
15          ▸     acknowledges that public education is a critical component of Utah's prosperity; and
16          ▸     directs that net revenue generated from the management of public lands that have
17     been transferred to the state of Utah be deposited into a new fund for the purpose of
18     increasing public educator salaries.
19     Special Clauses:
20          None

22     Be it resolved by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
23          WHEREAS, in all states east of the state of Colorado, the federal government controls
24     4% of the land;
25          WHEREAS, the federal government still controls nearly 50% of the land in the states of
26     Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah,
27     Washington, and Wyoming;

28          WHEREAS, the federal government still controls 66.5% of Utah's 54.3 million acres of
29     land;
30          WHEREAS, the scarcity of state and private land in Utah severely constrains the size
31     and diversity of the state's economy and educational opportunities, including options for
32     funding education;
33          WHEREAS, in 2012 the Legislature passed H.B. 148, Transfer of Public Lands Act and
34     Related Study, which seeks the transfer to the state of Utah the title of ordinary public lands in
35     the state currently managed by the federal government;
36          WHEREAS, in Section 63L-6-102, the Transfer of Public Lands Act defines ordinary
37     "public lands" to exclude certain federally controlled lands, such as national parks, national
38     monuments, national historic sites, and federal wilderness areas, as well as tribal lands;
39          WHEREAS, the movement to assert control and ownership over public lands within the
40     state's borders is, therefore, focused on ordinary public lands;
41          WHEREAS, a team of nationally renowned constitutional scholars and legal experts
42     completed an extensive legal analysis in 2015, concluding that federal retention of ordinary
43     public lands in Utah would have been rejected by the Founders, and should be rejected by the
44     United States Supreme Court, as "unfair and unacceptable";
45          WHEREAS, the legal analysis concluded that "Utah has been treated as decidedly less
46     than an equal sovereign, a result... the Constitution does not allow";
47          WHEREAS, in the event that these federally controlled lands are transferred to the state
48     of Utah, the state would be the recipient of any revenue generated from the lands;
49          WHEREAS, public education is a critical component of Utah's prosperity, and state
50     revenue invested in public schools is an investment in Utah's children and future economic
51     success; and
52          WHEREAS, the state of Utah is experiencing a growing shortage of credentialed
53     educators while the population of students in the public education system continues to grow:
54          NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that 50% of any new, recurring net revenue
55     derived from the management of transferred public lands shall be deposited into a new fund
56     and disbursed for the purpose of increasing public primary and secondary educator salaries.
57          BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the revenue described above continue to be
58     deposited into the fund and disbursed until educators' starting salaries have increased by a

59     minimum of 25% from the average starting salary in the year in which the state receives control
60     of at least 50% of the ordinary public lands in the state.

Legislative Review Note
Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel