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Bishop Pushes Bill To Give Mantua Some Growing Room

October 24, 2007
Press Release
Congressman Rob Bishop (R-Utah) has introduced legislation to help Mantua City obtain more land within city limits, by conveying to the city land currently owned by the federal government. The conveyed land could be used to develop a new city cemetery, construct a new town hall and fire station, and even serve as the home of a future elementary school.

"Mantua City has some challenges and needs, and they need just a little more space to meet some of those," Congressman Bishop said. "The parcels of land we're talking about are pretty small, but they would make a big difference for the town."

The Bishop bill, the Box Elder Utah Land Conveyance Act of 2007, would transfer to Mantua three parcels of existing Forest Service land, for a total of 31 acres. "These lands have sat vacant for decades, and no one can see a legitimate reason why they should be in federal control," the Northern Utah lawmaker noted, "so we should help Mantua out by letting the city make good use of these areas."

The parcels of land identified by the legislation are located on the south end of town below 100 South and west of Main Street and Willard Peak Road. They are bounded on three sides by privately held land, roads and other development. The land was originally owned by Box Elder County and was deeded to the U.S. Forest Service in 1941 for $1.00.

Representative Bishop, whose district encompasses all of Box Elder County, continued, "This land was basically given to the feds by the county in 1941, and now all we're saying is local government needs the land back for justifiable governmental purposes."

Since the land was given to the federal government by what is known as a quitclaim deed, the legislation directs the land be conveyed back "without consideration," which means that the City of Mantua would not have to pay for the acquired land. The bill does require, though, that the city bear some of the costs associated with the land survey and actual conveyance which would be accrued by the Forest Service.

The Bishop legislation, H.R. 3849, was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives this week, where the Congressman began immediately to push for legislative hearings on the issue.